Kazakh-Georgian Presidents Discuss Bilateral Cooperation

ASTANA – President Nursultan Nazarbayev and Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili discussed bilateral cooperation during the Georgian leader’s official visit to Kazakhstan June 13.

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Greeting Margvelashvili at the Akorda presidential residence, Nazarbayev noted that Margvelashvili’s visit marked the 25th anniversary of relations and opening of EXPO 2017 in Astana.

“We are grateful for your visit and Georgia’s participation in the exhibition. Our relations have always been good. Since the first years of independence, our countries provided comprehensive assistance to each other. Kazakhstan is one of the main investors in the Georgian economy. I do not see any obstacles to further improving bilateral relations. In this regard, your visit is very important,” Nazarbayev said.

Margvelashvili said he had wished to visit Kazakhstan for a long time, noting the interesting dynamics of the country’s development.

“Now I personally see the results of your and Kazakhs’ efforts during these very difficult years. The people of Georgia appreciate the support provided by Kazakhstan and you personally. I think Georgia’s participation in EXPO 2017 is very important. It gives us an opportunity to demonstrate our achievements in economy and support our traditional good-neighborly relations,” Margvelashvili said.

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He also stressed that Georgia participates in economic cooperation and dialogue between nations.

“I know that you are doing a great job in this direction. This is the way our countries developed from the moment of gaining independence,” Margvelashvili said.

Margvelashvili thanked Nazarbayev for many years of support, as well as stressed that he has a pleasant impression from staying in Astana.

Speaking to media representatives after the meeting, Nazarbayev noted stable relations between Kazakhstan and Georgia and that Margvelashvili’s visit is connected to opening of EXPO 2017 and the ceremony of opening the Georgian pavilion.

The leaders discussed a wide range of issues, including cooperation on the Chinese One Belt, One Road initiative.

“There is an opportunity to make Georgia a transit state like Kazakhstan, as well as provide access to Europe through the Black Sea. In addition, there are transport corridors of gas and oil that also pass through Georgia. In this regard, we talked about the capabilities of the Batumi oil terminal and port, which belong to Kazakh companies,” Nazarbayev said.

He noted that this path would be beneficial for all interested countries and would increase the transit potential of Kazakhstan. Nazarbayev also stressed the need for trade cooperation.

The Kazakh President also mentioned humanitarian and educational cooperation.

“Our cultural and humanitarian relations have always been at a high level. We need to continue this trend. We discussed the possibility of exchanging students between our universities so that young people would continue the traditions and develop our relations in the future. I believe that the visit of President Margvelashvili to Kazakhstan will give impetus to the two governments’ cooperation in solving important issues of bilateral relations,” Nazarbayev said.