U.S. and Central Asia Further Trade, Economic and Investment Cooperation

photo: Kazakhstan Ministry of Trade & Integration

The 15th meeting of the U.S.-Central Asia Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) Council was held in Astana on 13 June.

TIFA was signed in Washington in June 2004 by the United States, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan to expand international trade, attract foreign investment, and establish trade relations between Central Asian countries and Afghanistan. The US-Central Asian Trade and Investment Council was established within its framework.

Reporting from Astana, the Kazakh Ministry of Trade and Integration, said that the agenda had covered prospects for diversifying trade and expanding investment cooperation. Representatives of the six countries also discussed the development of new trade routes to improve supply chain resilience and diversify the economy.

During the event, Kazakh Deputy Prime Minister Serik Zhumangarin remarked, “As one of the major economies in the region and a WTO member, Kazakhstan recognizes the high potential offered by TIFA to strengthen not only bilateral but also regional trade relations. This year’s meeting of the TIFA Central Asia Regional Council is further proof of the progressive development of regional cooperation and sustainability, which in turn, plays an important role in stabilizing world economy by connecting the global markets of both the West and the East.”

U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai, emphasizing the need to coordinate joint efforts to ensure sustainable growth of TIFA economies, stated:

“Central Asia remains a very important economic and strategic partner for the United States. We are also experiencing climate change and facing the consequences of technological and industrial progress. It is necessary to jointly develop traditional supply chains, the stability of which will ensure sustainable economic growth. The US is interested in improving the quality of trade, supplying critical metals for the production of cars and semiconductors.”