Advancing the interaction potential. President Nursultan Nazarbayev took part in the informal meeting of the CIS Heads of State Council

May 17. Kazpravda. Moscow

By Rysty Alibekova

Advancing the interaction potential. President Nursultan Nazarbayev took part in the informal meeting of the CIS Heads of State CouncilThe meeting of the CIS leaders is a first major international event since the election of the Russian Federation President, and another evidence of close economic, inter-regional, cultural and humanitarian ties and shared goals of the member-nations. The informal meeting discussed most topical aspects of the multilateral cooperation.

The informal CIS summit was precluded by bilateral talks of the Kazakh and Russian leaders. Opening the meeting, Vladimir Putin underscored the role of President Nursultan Nazarbayev in the creation of regional associations in Eurasia, who advances integration processes on the post-Soviet space and is an author of the Eurasian Economic Community, Customs Union and the would-be Eurasian Union.

He is pleased that the joint ideas have materialized and are a good footing for us to go on, – said Vladimir Putin.

In turn, Nursultan Nazarbayev congratulated Vladimir Putin on his victory in the presidential election and wished him success in his work for the benefit of Russia and Russians.

– We are strategic allies, close neighbors and partners, – said the Kazakh President. – Kazakhstan-Russian relations serve as an example of cooperation in the former USSR, and the fruits of it are there – creation of the Customs Union and Common Economic Space. Russia is our major trading partner with a turnover of USD 25 billion. Cooperation between our regions is actively developing.

Nursultan Nazarbayev supported our nearest neighbor’s initiations in development of Siberian regions.

Alongside the prospects of regional integration the meeting addressed bilateral relations aspects, particularly related to the joint action plan.

Kazakh President reminded of the need of amending and prolonging the base Agreement on friendship, cooperation and mutual assistance between Kazakhstan and Russia, which on May 25 turns 20 years. Some of its articles are outdated now that the Customs Union is launched.

Nursultan Nazarbayev invited Putin to pay an official visit to Kazakhstan. The Russian President accepted the invitation.

Significant shifts are traceable of late in the CIS economic cooperation. A major event was the signing in October last year of a new agreement on free trade zone, designed to replace a number of multilateral and bilateral agreements. Taking into account the norms and rules of the WTO it is to become a real tool for enhancing trade and economic cooperation between CIS members, basing of uniform and transparent rules.

Humanitarian ties are growing too. Kazakhstan is holding a set of international events within the project “Astana – cultural capital of the CIS in 2012.” Branch councils were set up in education, science, culture, healthcare; common educational and cultural space is under formation. 2012 in CIS is declared the Year of sport and healthy lifestyle. The chief economic cooperation constituent in 2012 is development of relationships in communication and informatization. Partnership in science, technology and innovations is prioritized as well.

First steps in this direction have already been taken – the interstate program for innovation cooperation throughout the year 2020, adopted in October last year, is being implemented consistently.

Of particular importance is the interaction in strengthening stability and security, efforts to jointly counter global challenges and threats, the relevant agreements and joint programs for which were adopted.

Welcoming the participants of the informal CIS summit, V.Putin stressed that the CIS countries are the closest in the truest sense of the word strategic partners with a shared historical background, tackling the same tasks of economic modernization, new challenges and threats. The Commonwealth faces many practical goals concerning, in particular, development of a common economic and humanitarian space, improvement of regional security system, bolstering the international prestige.

Turkmen leader Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov, presiding this year in the CIS, offered to consider the prospects for development on CIS space of new multivariate transport routes towards large sectors of the global market.

Turkmenistan, he offered, could become an important link on such routes, taking into account the ample potential of ongoing projects in development of North – South and East-West routes, as well as the prospects of access to the markets of the Middle East, South and Southeast Asia.

The Turkmen President also supported the idea of making 2013 the Year of ecological awareness and environmental protection, and he is willing to share his own country’s experience in this area.

Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov invited the CIS PMs to Ashgabat on May 30 to the meeting of the Council of Heads of Government, and the CIS leaders – to the summit on November 2.

President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovich reminded of the slated meeting of the CIS Heads of Governments in Yalta in the end of September, and Business Forum “Yalta business meetings”.