President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, Mr Tokayev. I am very glad to see you. Thank you for accepting the invitation and for your visit.
Our bilateral contacts are ongoing at the highest level and in all areas – parliamentary as well as governmental: our Prime Minister has recently visited Nur-Sultan and had an extensive programme there. He reported to me in detail on all the meetings that took place.
Despite the pandemic, which resulted in last year’s slump of around 4 percent in our mutual trade, we have already seen a surge of over 33 percent during this year’s first six months.
We take active efforts to cooperate in international organisations, including our associations such as the SCO and Eurasian Economic Council.
Our cooperation is advancing in all areas and our allied relations are gaining strength and acquiring a new quality.
One of today’s most pressing issues is security, particularly in the context of the current developments in Afghanistan.
I expect that we will exchange views at our CSTO meeting via videoconference on Monday, and then will work within the SCO and CSTO framework on a regular basis in mid-September. I also hope that you and I will meet later, via videoconference, and work together. I am very thankful to you for accepting the invitation to take part in the Eastern Economic Forum events.
So we have a very extensive agenda, and today we have a great deal to discuss, particularly all those security-related developments.
President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev: Mr President, thank you for your invitation to visit Moscow.
Our contacts have indeed been constant; even amidst the pandemic, we have worked in the online mode and spoken by telephone. Yet, as the saying goes, seeing once is better than hearing twice.
As allies, Kazakhstan and Russia take consistent efforts on all items on the agenda, be it international problems, security issues, or particularly, bilateral cooperation. I am pleased to say that relations between our countries are successfully and dynamically advancing in the atmosphere of strategic partnership.
You have just mentioned the most recent figures that indicate the growth in our mutual trade. It should be noted that our border regions account for 70 percent of trade.
We have planned the meeting of the Interregional Cooperation Forum; I hope it will take place in October – at least via videoconference, as people are looking forward to this event, which is essential for giving an additional impetus to our allied relations.
Indeed, we take consistent efforts to coordinate our work as regards security issues. This problem is becoming increasingly urgent in the context of the current developments in Afghanistan. Today, I would like to hear your opinion on the events occurring in that troubled country in order to coordinate and pursue a joint policy.