Central Asian Economic Forum held in Uzbekistan

TASHKENT (TCA) — The First Central Asian Economic Forum was held on March 15 in Uzbekistan’s capital Tashkent with the participation of the region’s Government representatives. The forum’s topic was “Central Asian Cooperation: Prospects for Mutually Beneficial Development”. Kazakhstan’s delegation was headed by Deputy Prime Minister Zhenis Kassymbek, the official website of the Prime Minister of Kazakhstan reported.

Kassymbek said in his speech that today the countries of the Central Asian region demonstrate great potential for cooperation in all areas based on the principles of good neighborliness and mutual interest. New dynamics of cooperation in the region are already bearing fruit. Commodity turnover has increased significantly, new air, road and rail links, checkpoints are opening, and new infrastructure projects are being implemented.

The work is currently underway to expand the range of goods of mutual trade between countries. To date, about 45 commodity items have been identified that are in demand in the market of the Central Asian region and the delivery of which Kazakhstan plans to increase.

“There are great opportunities for investment cooperation in the mining industry, in the field of water and agriculture, engineering, energy, food industry, transport and communications. To improve the trade and investment cooperation of the Central Asian countries, we propose to fully use the potential of the existing railway lines connecting our countries. For more efficient and intensive cooperation, we should use the optimal tariff policy in the organization of railway transit traffic. I am sure that the simplification of administrative procedures in the implementation of transport between the countries would allow obtaining a positive multiplicative effect for all our countries,” the Kazakh Deputy Prime Minister said.

A number of logistics centers have been established in Kazakhstan, such as the seaports of Aktau, Kuryk, Bautino, as well as the dry port of Khorgos-Eastern Gate on the Kazakh-Chinese border. One of the measures to increase the economic and transport potential of the region is the formation and development of the Central Asian Transport and Transit Corridor “North-South,” connecting it with Europe, Russia, the countries of the Persian Gulf and South Asia.

Taking into account the dynamically developing and capacious markets of Europe and Asia, Central Asian countries should maximize the potential of historically connected transport arteries through coordinated policies. In this regard, in the course of the forum Kazakhstan initiated the creation of the Interstate Advisory and Coordinating Body “Council for the Development of Transport and Transit Corridors of Central and South Asia” with the participation of representatives from all countries of Central and South Asia, including Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India.

At the forum it was also proposed to consider the possibility of creating a Business Council of Central Asian countries, with the participation of the region’s business communities.

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