News Digest: Foreign Media on Kazakhstan-EU Relations, Upcoming Astana International Forum, Tokayev’s Visit to China and More

ASTANA – The Astana Times has picked a selection of articles on Kazakhstan featured in international media across the world this week. This week’s foreign media digest covers the Kazakhstan-European Union partnership, Kazakh-Chinese cooperation within the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), the Astana International Forum, President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev’s visit to China, and an interview with the chief expert at the Kazakhstan Institute for Strategic Studies.

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EU High Representative and European Commission Vice President Josep Borrell meets with Kazakh Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Murat Nurtleu

The official website of the European Union released an article on May 15 on the meeting of EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice President of the European Commission Josep Borrell with Kazakh Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Murat Nurtleu.

“Borrell recalled that EU-Kazakhstan partnership is strong and built on mutual trust, and confirmed the EU’s commitment to develop further the mutually beneficial cooperation on the basis of the EU-Kazakhstan Enhanced Partnership and Cooperation Agreement. Priority areas of cooperation include sustainable connectivity, green transition, and critical raw materials. The EU is the biggest investor and Kazakhstan’s key trading partner. Enhanced cooperation will aim to improve the investment climate to attract even more European investors to Kazakhstan,” reads the article.

BRI helps landlocked Kazakhstan open door to global markets

Xinhua Global Service published an article on May 16 on the Kazakh-Chinese cooperation within the Belt and Road Initiative proposed by China in 2013.

“The China-Europe freight trains through Central Asia, the China-Kazakhstan Khorgos International Frontier Cooperation Center, and the China-Kazakhstan International Logistics Base in the eastern Chinese port of Lianyungang have all helped open the door to global markets for the Central Asian country. The enhanced interconnectivity has also encouraged many Chinese companies to invest in the country,” according to the article.

Better connectivity will unlock Central Asia’s economic potential

Nikkei Asia, a leading business media outlet in Asia, released an article on May 15 by Kazakh Minister of National Economy Alibek Kuantyrov on Central Asian economic cooperation and connectivity and the Astana International Forum.

According to Kuantyrov, Kazakhstan aims to become a key logistics center and transit hub that can provide landlocked Central Asian countries access to global markets. Efforts are also being made to improve border crossing procedures and reduce transit times and costs.

“In the spirit of creating a new regional political environment prioritizing cooperation and prosperity, Kazakhstan will launch the Astana International Forum next month to bring together politicians, business leaders, scholars and experts from around the world to discuss key issues, including economic development, trade and investment. Within the forum, we will exchange ideas, share best practices, and develop concrete proposals to promote greater integration, not only in Central Asia but also worldwide,” the article notes.

Xi holds talks with Kazakh President

Xinhua news agency published an article on May 17 on Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev’s visit to China.

“Chinese President Xi Jinping warmly welcomed Tokayev to China for the [China-Central Asia] summit and the state visit. Xi expressed his pleasure at hosting Tokayev in Xian and once again wished him a happy birthday as he turned 70 on this very day. Xi pointed out that Tokayev’s state visit to China on this special occasion speaks volumes about the strength of the bilateral ties and once again attests to his unique bond with China. China and Kazakhstan are trustworthy good friends, good brothers and good partners, he said,” the article reads.

The two sides should vigorously carry forward the traditional friendship, firmly support each other, deepen cooperation, pursue development and rejuvenation, and build a Kazakhstan-China community with a shared future featuring everlasting friendship, strong mutual trust and solidarity, Xi said.

Key issues of strengthening political and economic cooperation discussed with EU ambassador

EU Reporter, a Brussels-based European news platform, published an article on May 17 about a meeting between Kazakh Foreign Minister Murat Nurtleu and EU Ambassador to Kazakhstan Kestutis Jankauskas.

“The parties discussed preparation works for the Central Asia – EU Economic Forum that will be held on May 18-19 in Almaty. Special attention was given to the deepening of cooperation in the fields of transport, logistics and infrastructure that have become especially important in the light of the EU Global Gateway strategy. During the meeting, the parties exchanged views on relevant issues of the international and regional agenda, as well as outlined priority spheres of cooperation in the short, medium and long term,” notes the article.

Interview: China-Central Asia Summit to boost cooperation, people-to-people ties, says Kazakh expert

Xinhua news agency published an exclusive interview with Adil Kaukenov, the chief expert at the Kazakhstan Institute for Strategic Studies, on May 15. Kaukenov spoke about the China-Central Asia Summit, which is taking place on May 18-19 in the Chinese city of Xian. The forum brings together the leaders of the five Central Asian countries and China.

In recent years, China and Central Asian countries have made substantial progress in Belt and Road cooperation. Kaukenov voiced confidence that this summit will offer opportunities to further promote trade and economic ties between all sides as part of this cooperation, according to Xinhua.

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