“Mr Minnikhanov is lucky with the predecessor. Mr Shaimiyev, you’re lucky with the successor”

KazanSummit 2019: how Shaimiyev remembered the epoch of atheism, Minnikhanov congratulated on the OIC anniversary, while Abdulatipov claimed about the “Kazan standard”

“Mr Minnikhanov is lucky with the predecessor. Mr Shaimiyev, you’re lucky with the successor” Photo: Rinat Nazmetdinov

During the KazanSummit plenary session on 25 April, Tatarstan President Rustam Minnikhanov announced the presentation of the group Russia – Islamic World, which is chaired by him, in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, State Advisor of the Republic of Tatarstan Mintimer Shaimiyev remembered the state’s attempts to build an atheistic society, while ex-head of Dagestan Ramazan Abdulatipov said how lucky residents of Tatarstan were. More is in Realnoe Vremya’s correspondent’s report who worked at the summit.

“Give a round of applause! It’s a jubilee, 50 years!”

The second day of the 11th Russia – Islamic World: KazanSummit 2019 International Economic Summit was marked by the participation of Tatarstan President Rustam Minnikhanov, State Advisor of the Republic of Tatarstan, special envoy of UNESCO on intercultural dialogue Mintimer Shaimiyev in the plenary session. The panel also included Russia’s permanent representative to the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Ramazan Abdulatipov, Vice-Speaker of the Federation Council Ilyas Umakhanov, special representative of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in cooperation with organisations of Muslim states Konstantin Shuvalov and foreign guests.

The conference began with reading the Quran, as Muslim events should do. Tatarstan Mufti Kamil Samigullin read ayats from the surah An-Nur (Light), then a bright presentation of the forum started. A star from Australia Andrew Bryant, the author of books on leadership, was invited to moderate the plenary session. Rustam Minnikhanov approached the rostrum, began with the traditional Basmala and welcomed people in the hall: “As-salamu alaykum.” Then he read President of Russia Vladimir Putin’s welcome.

‘‘Muslim countries are traditional partners of Russia in promoting the dialogue between civilisations and religions, in efforts to provide security and stability at the regional and global level,’’ reads Putin’s address.

“Give a round of applause!’’ the Tatarstan president asked. “It’s a jubilee, 50 years!”

Minnikhanov noted that the head of the country pays a lot of attention to the cooperation with Muslim countries. So at his initiative, Russia became an observer in the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation in 2005. In 2019, the organisation celebrates the 50th anniversary since its foundation.

“It’s a jubilee, 50 years!” And the people obediently clapped their hands.

‘‘Islamic economy is today an indispensable part of the world economy. The total volume of assets of the Islamic economy is evaluated at more than $4,5 trillion. It is expected to reach almost $7 trillion in five years. Islamic finance, different halal sectors dynamically develop – food, tourism, fashion, multimedia, medicine, cosmetics and other areas. Islamic financial mechanisms, markets and sectors attract more business circles in Europe, North America, Asia. We actively work to expand economic links with the Islamic world,’’ he stressed.

In expectation of presentation in Foreign Ministry

According to the head of the Republic of Tatarstan, international certification must be obtained to enter the external market. This, in turn, requires cooperation with federal authorities. And halal exports must become an important component of external supplies of Tatarstan.

It should be noted that Minnikhanov chairs Russia – Islamic World Strategic Vision Group. Its task is to help further convergence of Russia with the Islamic world focusing on wider economic cooperation.

“Meeting at the top level create good opportunities to form a real picture of the state of Islam and Muslims in Russia in Muslim world countries, strengthen the cooperation between our country and the Islamic words,” he said. “The presentation of our Group in the Russian Foreign Ministry is scheduled in June.”

The attraction of investments from Muslim countries to Russian regions, staff training in Islamic finance and learning of foreign experience in Islamic economy are among the tasks he gave to himself and his subordinates.

Ramazan Abdulatipov burst into thanking Minnikhanov and Shaimiyev

“Lucky with the successor and the predecessor”

Ramazan Abdulatipov read a welcome speech on behalf of the OIC chairman to the participants of the meeting. However, he personally burst into thanking Minnikhanov and Shaimiyev.

“I’ve been in Kazan in different times, even the hardest ones,’’ the ex-head of Dagestan said. “It became possible to stabilise interethnic and federative relations under Mr Shaimiyev. Tatarstan managed to build a highly efficient and successful republic. This was possible due to continuity law. Mr Minnikhanov is lucky with the predecessor. Mr Shaimiyev, you’re lucky with the successor. The people of Tatarstan and Russia altogether are lucky. If earlier it was said about European standards, now it’s being said about the ‘Kazan standard’,”.

The first Tatarstan president, in turn, reminded that there was just recently made an attempt to build an atheistic society in the country.

‘‘And we witnessed these events. 23 acting mosques had remained in Tatarstan by the 1990s. Now there are 1,500 mosques, which were restored. It means that faith is eternal, ineradicable. And we should try to speak the same language with its help. Islam was adopted in Tatarstan in 922. The Bolgarian Islamic Academy opened a year ago. Isn’t it an achievement?’’ Shaimiyev asked.

At the same time, he complemented Minnikhanov’s words about Russia – Islamic World Strategic Vision Group. According to him, Yevgeny Primakov’s merit is great in its creation.

“Constant work gives results. Well-being is in movement. We can oppose any negative effect together. We’re strong together!” the republic’s state advisor finished his speech.

The first Tatarstan president, in turn, reminded that there was just recently made an attempt to build an atheistic society in the country

“You, journalists, give an opinion”

After the plenary session, there was a press conference with speakers. So the first question was for Minnikhanov, about his opinion of the new site for KazanSummit – Kazan Expo exhibition centre. During the previous years, all forums were in Korston hotel.

“Not I but you, journalists, give an opinion,” he replied. “Next time we will probably have to use the second complex too. And I am not joking. Today we have 38 Russian regions, 72 countries. 3,800 people have visited this site. We have over 20 million Muslims. We are the biggest producer of goods.

If we learn to make a big amount of useful halal products, it will open huge opportunities for us. We have huge potential. The huge niche needs it.”

However, he called the choice of site correct and added that a hotel would be built nearby.

On the last day of the forum, 26 April, the summit’s participants were going to have an entertaining programme. They were to visit Bolgar, Sviyazhsk and see Kazan highlights.

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By Timur Rakhmatullin. Photo: Rinat Nazmetdinov
Tatarstan

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