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19 January 2019
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Kazakhstan, Switzerland identify agenda for cooperation12.04.2018
International affairs  23:05

During the third round of regular Kazakh-Swiss political consultations in Bern, the sides reaffirmed their commitment to further strengthening of their all-round cooperation, the press service of Kazakh MFA reports.

The Kazakh delegation at the consultations was headed by Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Roman Vassilenko, and the Swiss side was represented by Deputy State Secretary of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of the Swiss Confederation Krystyna Marty Lang.

The meeting in Bern discussed a wide range of issues of bilateral and multilateral cooperation.

The sides praised the level of political and economic cooperation reached over a quarter of a century of diplomatic relations between the two countries, reaffirming their mutual commitment to further development and expansion of the mutually beneficial partnership.

It was noted that the visit of then-President of the (Swiss) Confederation Doris Leuthard to Astana in August 2017 and her negotiations with President Nazarbayev gave a powerful impetus to the development of relations and identified priority areas for cooperation.

The Bern talks paid particular attention to bolstering trade and economic cooperation in finance, pharmaceuticals, and energy, as well as the development of inter-regional partnerships.

Today Switzerland is the third largest investor in Kazakhstan's economy and fourth among the EU members in terms of its trade turnover with Kazakhstan.

Speaking at the meeting, Ms Krystyna Marty Lang noted the effectiveness of the bilateral contractual framework for economic cooperation, the existence of appropriate mechanisms for interaction in the form of an intergovernmental commission and business council, and expressed the desire of Switzerland to intensify work in this direction, in particular, in terms of implementing of international transport and infrastructure projects under the Chinese Belt and Road initiative.

In turn, Roman Vassilenko told the Swiss side about the upcoming 20th anniversary of Astana, within the framework of which the inauguration of the Astana International Financial Center will be held.

Taking into account Switzerland's experience in the sphere of financial and environmentally friendly technologies, the Kazakh side also expressed hope for close cooperation in implementing the projects of the International Technopark of IT Startups and the International Center for the Development of Green Technologies and Innovative Projects that are being established at the former EXPO-2017 site. It should be reminded that the Swiss pavilion at the Astana EXPO-2017 was awarded a gold medal 'For deep revelation of the EXPO-2017 Theme'.

It was stressed that Kazakhstan and Switzerland are making a comprehensive contribution to strengthening of international security, including by providing platforms for negotiations on the most complex issues on the global agenda and are ready to continue to work and cooperate in this direction.

The sides also expressed their intention to continue cooperation on water issues in Central Asia. During the discussion of the situation in the region, the interlocutors welcomed the dynamically developing dialogue between the Central Asian countries, including the results of the recent working (consultative) meeting of the heads of the Central Asian states in Astana.

Speaking about CA issues, Kazakh and Swiss delegations discussed international efforts to assist the stabilization in Afghanistan.

In this regard, Kazakhstan's efforts as a member of the UNSC in 2017-2018, namely the organization of the Security Council delegation's visit to Kabul and the productive ministerial debates on Afghanistan in the UNSC in January during Kazakhstan's chairmanship were noted.

In general, the political consultations allowed the sides to identify the agenda for cooperation between Kazakhstan and Switzerland.

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