NUR-SULTAN – OSCE Chairperson-in-Office and Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Ann Linde paid an official visit to Kazakhstan.
Nur-Sultan was the first destination in Linde’s four-day visit to the OSCE participating States of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan from April 11 to April 15. She is also expected to hold talks virtually with the Foreign Minister of Turkmenistan.
As part of her visit to Kazakhstan, Linde met with President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, who noted the extreme importance of her visit to the country, both as OSCE Chairperson-in-Office and as Swedish Foreign Minister.
“I would like to emphasize Kazakhstan’s strong commitment to OSCE principles and values. Co-operation with your organisation is one of the priorities of our foreign policy. We are ready for closer cooperation both with your organization and with the member states,” said Tokayev, noting the importance of the OSCE Summit hosted by the Kazakh capital Nur-Sultan (Astana back then) in 2010.
Linde also underlined the importance of the Astana Declaration, adopted at the 2010 summit.
“The declaration is our common achievement, as it highlights adherence to the OSCE’s key commitments. Today, these key commitments, re-enforced in the Astana Summit, remain valid,” she said.
She also outlined the priorities of the Swedish Chairpersonship, including upholding the OSCE concept of comprehensive security that is based on the interrelatedness between political and economic security, human rights, democracy, the rule of law and equality.
During the meeting, Tokayev also reaffirmed his nation’s commitment to strengthening ties with Sweden with a focus on economic and humanitarian cooperation.
Linde expressed her gratitude to Tokayev for a warm welcome and said that the visit was a priority for her as OSCE Chairperson-in-Office.
“I want to note that we attach great importance to the OSCE’s relations with Kazakhstan,” she said.
Linde’s meeting with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Mukhtar Tileuberdi also focused on further strengthening cooperation with the country, across three dimensions – the politico-military, the economic and environmental, and the human dimension.
At a press briefing that followed the meeting, Tileuberdi said the potential for Kazakh and Swedish cooperation is significant.
“We commend Kazakh and Swedish trade and economic cooperation. We expressed interest in greater cooperation in healthcare, information and communication technologies, sustainable development and energy. Kazakhstan is interested in cooperation with Sweden in mechanical engineering, agriculture and environmental protection,” said Tileuberdi addressing the journalists.
After concluding her visit to Nur-Sultan on April 12th, Linde is expected to visit Uzbekistan next.