Foreign Ministers of Central Asia and Japan adopt the Roadmap for Cooperation
In Ashgabat, the Kazakh delegation headed by Minister of Foreign Affairs Kairat Abdrakhmanov took part in the 6th Meeting of Foreign Ministers of States participating in the Dialogue Central Asia + Japan.
The agenda of the Ashgabat meeting included issues of promoting regional cooperation in the field of achieving goals of sustainable development, trade and investment, security, cultural and humanitarian cooperation. An exchange of views took place on improving the business environment and developing infrastructure.
Kazakhstan welcomes the search for new forms of cooperation aimed at unlocking the business potential of Central Asia. In this regard, I would like to congratulate the Japanese side on the successful holding of the 1st Business-Forum Dialogue in March of this year, – K. Abdrakhmanov said during his speech.
It was proposed to more actively include Japanese economic departments in the work of the business-forum, without participation of which the economic track within the framework of the Dialogue loses its attractiveness. Kazakhstan considers the development of the transit and transport potential of Central Asia as one of the priority directions of cooperation, the continuation of work on the approximation of infrastructure projects implemented within the framework of its own national programs and strategies of countries in the region with large multifaceted transit-transport projects. Time dictates the holding of coordinated transport policy in Central Asia aimed at increasing the transit potential of the region and expanding interregional trade-economic ties.
It is emphasized that within the framework of its activities in the UNSC, Kazakhstan pays special attention to strengthening security in Central Asia and Afghanistan, countering transnational threats, strengthening instruments of preventive diplomacy.
Astana views its further work the main UN political body through the prism of ensuring continuity of the link between security and development.
Dialogue participants were informed that Kazakhstan has implemented the first project of providing official aid to Afghanistan’s development. Together with the UN Development Program Japan, a pilot project was launched on expanding economic independence and rights of Afghani women.
Another important component of the Dialogue, according to the Kazakh side, is the continuation of the successful experience of cooperation with Japan and unification of joint efforts within the Central Asian Regional Information Coordination Center for combating illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and their precursors. In this regard, Kazakhstan welcomes Japan’s intention to jointly with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime launch the Project for the creation of border liaison offices and strengthening cross-border cooperation in in the fight against drugs and crime in Central Asia.
Touching upon the topic of the forthcoming International Specialized Exhibition EXPO-2017, it was noted that this event will become a catalyst for fundamentally new approaches to sustainable development of the countries of the region based on the principle of global interdependence and shared responsibility for the fate of the planet.
Following the meeting of the Foreign Ministers Council held in the year of the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the countries of Central Asia and Japan, a Joint Statement was signed and a “Roadmap for Regional Cooperation in Transport and Logistics” was adopted.
The documents provide for assistance in the training of personnel, including in the field of road control, urban transport, prevention of road traffic disasters, in the railway industry, in the field of air traffic control, and customs administration. Cooperation also covers issues of strengthening border control, development of rail logistics, and transportation of agricultural products.
At the initiative of our country, the text of the statement includes issues of active use of the Dialogue potential on attracting Japanese experience in the field of qualitative management and preservation of water resources.
Participation of the States members of the Dialogue in the first OIC Summit on Science and Technology was unanimously supported, which will contribute to the scientific, technical and innovative development of the Central Asian region, and will be held in Astana on September 10-11.
As is known, the Dialogue “Central Asia + Japan” is a format of cooperation initiated by Japan in 2004 with the aim of increasing efforts to expand and strengthen closer ties with Central Asian countries and develop regional cooperation. The first meeting in such a format took place in August 2004 in Astana. Since its inception, the Dialogue has become an important platform for discussing political, economic and security issues common to Japan and Central Asian countries.
Here in Ashgabat, K. Abdrakhmanov met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Japan, Fumio Kishida. They discussed the course of implementing agreements reached reached during the state visit of President Nursultan Nazarbayev to Japan in November 2016, and discussed the current state and prospective areas of bilateral cooperation, multilateral cooperation, including coordination of efforts within the framework of the UN Security Council’s work.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan acquainted his Japanese counterpart with the priorities of the trade, economic, investment, transit and transport policy of Kazakhstan.
Touching upon the bilateral interaction, the Japanese Minister noted the relevance of President Nursultan Nazarbayev’s State Program Nurly Zhol, noting the attractiveness of transit-transport potential of our country. Japan will present its latest technological developments during the specialized exhibition EXPO-2017 in Astana.
During the meeting, the Japanese side announced the simplification of procedures for issuing entry visas and increasing the duration of stay for Kazakh citizens.
The Kazakh Foreign Minister also met with the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General � Head of the UN Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy in Central Asia (UNRCCA) Petko Draganov.
During the meeting, it was noted that Kazakhstan highly appreciates the efforts of the UNRCCA to modernize the regulatory framework for transboundary water management in the Aral Sea basin and welcomes the cooperation of the Regional Center with the International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea. Along with this, other issues of regional cooperation and joint counteraction to transnational threats were also discussed.
The meeting with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan Rashid Meredow concluded the program of the visit to Ashgabat, during which the Heads of Foreign Ministries of the two countries considered and outlined a plan to implement the agreements reached recently during the State visit of President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow to Astana.
Source: Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan