ASTANA — President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev held talks with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in Ankara as part of his working visit to Türkiye on March 16, the Akorda press service reported.
Tokayev also took part in an extraordinary summit of the Organization of Turkic States (OTS).
Tokayev extended his condolences to the families and friends of the Feb. 6 earthquake victims and the Turkish people.
“Türkiye has always effectively resisted various challenges. I am confident that your rich experience and unity will help you overcome the current difficulties,” he said.
President Tokayev underlined the importance of developing cooperation in the emergency field and ensuring constant readiness for possible threats. He emphasized the relevance of the summit’s agenda on emergency management and humanitarian aid agenda.
According to Tokayev, it is imperative for countries to help one another during natural disasters, as the tragic earthquake in Türkiye illustrated.
“When the brotherly nation was in peril, the Turkic peoples demonstrated admirable unity and participation. Kazakhstan stepped in immediately to assist our Turkish brothers,” Tokayev said.
Erdoğan expressed gratitude to the President of Kazakhstan for accepting the invitation to visit Ankara.
“The earthquake claimed the lives of 49,000 people. You were one of the first world leaders to call at this difficult time. Kazakh rescuers took part in providing assistance to injured citizens. We felt a genuine brotherly attitude,” Erdoğan said.
The presidents discussed regional and international issues on the agenda. They also drew attention to the prospects for strengthening bilateral cooperation in trade, economics, investment, transport, logistics, and energy sectors.
According to President Tokayev, Türkiye is one of the country’s top five trade partners, with the bilateral trade between the states reaching 33 percent or $6.3 billion in 2022. Kazakhstan, Tokayev noted, is ready to support the projects of Turkish investors in the country.
Erdoğan stressed this figure should be increased to $10 billion by the end of this year, given the trade growth observed in all sectors due to recent bilateral visits.
The importance of the Trans-Caspian international transit corridor, known as the Middle Corridor, was also highlighted during the meeting. Tokayev said the country is willing to implement joint infrastructure projects to capitalize on the enormous potential of this transport and logistics corridor.
Erdoğan echoed his counterpart, saying that the Middle Corridor’s potential must be effectively utilized to improve transportation ties.