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Meeting of Prime Ministers of Lithuania and Kazakhstan: new stimulus for closer cooperation

Date

2015 05 19

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On Tuesday, in the city of Astana, during his official visit to Kazakhstan, the Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius met with the Head of the Kazakhstan Government, Karim Masimov.

“In recent years, Lithuania and Kazakhstan have discovered a number of common interests in numerous areas of bilateral cooperation, notably transport, trade relations and education. However, this is only a small share of the potential that could be fully realized,” said the Head of Lithuanian Government and emphasized that Kazakhstan is Lithuania’s main partner in Central Asia.

The Prime Ministers agreed that the two countries share good political relations, and the visit will boost their economic relations and promote investment as well as create new opportunities for cooperation.

“I hope that the visit of our governmental delegation will serve as an additional stimulus in important areas such as logistics, education, science, culture and tourism,” said the Prime Minister A. Butkevičius and expressed delight about the large number of business representatives in the delegation as well as the two business forums that will be held during the visit in Astana and Almaty.

During the meeting officials noted that this year bears significance for both countries: on the 11th of March Lithuania celebrated the 25th anniversary of the Restoration of Independence, while Kazakhstan celebrates the 20th anniversary of its Constitution, the 550th anniversary of Kazakhstan’s statehood and the 20th anniversary of the Assembly of the People of Kazakhstan this year. Both parties exchanged congratulations on the occasions.

Prime Ministers and their delegations touched upon the topic of the Intergovernmental Commission for Trade and Economic Cooperation between Lithuania and Kazakhstan and noted that the Commission is functioning more efficiently each year and that is plays an increasingly important role in the economic cooperation of the two countries.

Considerable attention was given to the issues of education, transport, logistics and freight transit. It was also noted that the growing official and business ties provide a positive stimulus for new initiatives in the field of transport, and contribute to the potential volumes of the bilateral trade.

“Freight transit to Kazakhstan via the territory of the Russian Federation currently raises concerns. On numerous occasions, the Russian Federation veterinary officers withheld or returned Lithuanian transit freight destined to the Republic of Kazakhstan. We believe that it would be appropriate to make a concerted effort to raise the issue at all levels of the European Union, the Customs Union, Kazakhstan and at the level of bilateral relations between the Russian Federation and the Republic of Kazakhstan”, said the Lithuanian Head of Government.

“We would also welcome closer ties between Kazakhstan and the European Union, therefore we very much hope that the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement between Kazakhstan and the European Union will be signed and enacted in the near future”, said the Lithuanian Prime Minister.

The Head of Government greeted Kazakhstan on winning the right to host the international exhibition EXPO-2017 and noted Lithuania’s readiness to participate in it. The Lithuanian Prime Minister invited the Kazakh colleague to visit Lithuania at the time of his convenience.

Prime Minister K. Masimov thanked for the invitation and expressed delight about the tangible results brought by the bilateral cooperation, particularly in the fields of transport and logistics. Kazakhstan’s Head of Government noted the need to learn from Lithuania as regards the development of small and medium-sized businesses, therefore a visit of Kazakhstan business delegation to Lithuania has been in the plans.

The meeting was followed by the signature of the three Lithuanian-Kazakh intergovernmental agreements: on mutual protection of classified information, the cooperation in the fight against money laundering, and cooperation in the veterinary field.