NUR-SULTAN – Kazakh Foreign Minister Mukhtar Tileuberdi participated July 16 in the first Central Asia – China high-level meeting that gathered foreign ministers of China, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, reported the Kazakh Foreign Ministry press service.
All sides agreed to launch a Central Asia – China format in an effort to “promote mutually beneficial cooperation in new conditions and together address global challenges for the sake of common interests” and meet once a year.
The foreign ministers also discussed the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and ways to curb its negative impact and restart economic growth in the region. They also explored the prospects for cooperation in digitization, financial technologies, e-commerce, smart cities development, high tech and partnership in pharmaceuticals.
“During the meeting, the ministers shared their views on international and regional issues. The participants agreed to step up multifaceted cooperation between Central Asian countries and China based on friendship, good neighborliness and mutual benefit agreements that promote common interests and which are an important factor for economic growth and security in the region,” said the Kazakh ministry in a press release.
On behalf of Kazakhstan, Tileuberdi expressed gratitude to the Chinese side for their humanitarian assistance and support in the fight against the pandemic.
The meeting participants noted the сompulsory measures the countries had to take to stop the spread of COVID-19 infection that resulted in declining regional mobility and economic activity and stressed the need to join efforts to propel regional economic integration, trade and investments.
China also expressed readiness to launch ‘green corridors’ for the Central Asian countries to ensure a nonstop transborder cargo flow.
“China is ready to support its Central Asian partners in increasing agricultural productivity and increasing the added value of products. China welcomes and supports the increase in supply of high-quality, environmentally friendly and organic agricultural products from Central Asian countries to the Chinese market,” read the joint statement.