24 May 2023 20:56

Kazakhstan interested in economic aspect of integration in EAEU above all else - Tokayev

ASTANA. May 24 (Interfax) - Kazakhstan is committed to economic integration in the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) above all else, Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev said.

"The main measure of the success of economic integration is not the number of strategies, treaties and decisions, but new production facilities, technologies and jobs. For us, integration in the EAEU is economic above all else as stated in the 2015 treaty [...] Kazakhstan is absolutely committed to integration based on the 2015 treaty," Tokayev said at a meeting of the Eurasian Economic Forum Eurasian Integration in a Multipolar World in Moscow.

It includes the exercise of "four freedoms" and basic principles such as non-discriminatory access to infrastructure, fair competition, equal rights and respect for national interests, he said. "These are basic principles of our joint work, and Kazakhstan will promote these exact principles. I think the prospects are good," Tokayev said.

He said the problem of "mutual barriers and restrictions, which still regularly arise" should be solved. "I am not for dramatizing this situation, but generally, problems that arise need to be solved. The stakes are very high here," the Kazakh president said.

He also said he believes it is extremely important for the countries of the EAEU "to forge effective interaction with the key political and economic partner of the Union, the People's Republic of China." "China is simultaneously a large cargo sender and a large client," Tokayev said.

He spoke about his recent visit to China, during which the construction of a Kazakh logistics center in the Xian dry port was launched. This port is expected to become the main hub for sending direct container trains to Central Asia, Europe, Turkey and Iran, he said.

He also said the launch of railway communication on the Bakhty-Ayagoz section with the construction of a separate border crossing point to China is planned. "Here we hope for fruitful cooperation with Russia as the project considerably reduces the distance and time needed for delivering goods to China not only from Kazakhstan, but also from Western Siberia," the president said.