President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev: Mr President,
I sincerely welcome you in Kazakhstan on this state visit on my invitation. Your previous such visit was 4 years ago. Despite the official nature of our meetings, we meet rather frequently to compare notes and resolve the issues that come up. Therefore, I believe this state visit of yours will help further deepen our relations in these difficult times.
Tomorrow you and I will meet at Borovoye to discuss matters of the CIS, of our Eurasian Economic Union, and, I believe it is very important that we are prepared for these discussions. Despite the fact that our Eurasian Economic Union is going through trials, despite the fact that some partners do not want to accept it, it is expanding and gaining respect and authority.
Those who have the desire are building up free trade with us, joining us, and their number is growing. Therefore, I believe that we are on the right track. We had the opportunity to discuss everything pertaining to our relations in Sochi, therefore today the documents for our meeting and talks have already been prepared.
Yesterday we started with an exchange of opinions. Today we will cover regional and international cooperation and our economic contacts.
Welcome to Kazakhstan!
President of Russian Vladimir Putin: Mr President, thank you very much for your invitation.
We do meet and talk regularly, and our teams are in constant contact. There is no need for me to characterise Russian-Kazakhstani relations: this is not only a relationship of trust, this is an alliance in every sense of the word. Kazakhstan is one of our major trade and economic partners.
You are right – both the global economy and our relations are going through hard times, and unfortunately, this involves both objective and subjective factors. However, I have to say that despite a slight reduction in trade in terms of volume, we have registered a 23 percent growth in ruble equivalent in the first 7 months of the year.
However, this is not the point. The thing is that we have almost 6,000 Russian companies operating in Kazakhstan. We have accumulated a large investment in dollar terms. Besides, your brainchild, as I would call it without any exaggeration, our Eurasian Economic Union is developing and creating conditions for the efficient development of our economies.
You said that some do not wish to recognise it, but even that is almost a thing of the past. We can see proposals from many of our partners to develop relations between economic unions. And we know that many countries are voicing their desire to cooperate with the Eurasian Union in various formats, including within free economic trade zones.
All this will be the subject of our talks today. The state visit format only serves to highlight the level and nature of our relations. Thank you very much for your invitation.
Nursultan Nazarbayev: I would like to add that our relations are developing on the basis of the Framework Agreement on Friendship and Cooperation, an alliance directed into the 21st century. The alliance is formalised in the Collective Security Treaty Organisation, while its economic manifestation is the EAEU.
Kazakhstan has always been and will remain Russia’s closest and most reliable neighbour in all life situations. I would like everyone to know this, because it meets the vital interests of the people of Kazakhstan. I hope it is the same for Russia. In this way, we shall develop and build our relations.
Vladimir Putin: Thank you.