ASTANA, October 10, 2018 – The Minister of Foreign Affairs Kairat Abdrakhmanov has met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary Péter Szijjártóand Under Secretary-General of the United Nations, Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Europe, Olga Algayerova. The honored guests arrived in Kazakhstan to attend the Eighth Session of the Meeting of the Parties to the Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes.
Kazakhstan and Hungary were key participants of this momentous international event, as Kazakhstan takes over the chairmanship from Hungary for the next 3 years (2019 - 2021).
Minister Abdrakhmanov stated that the Astana meeting is the first meeting of the Parties to the Water Convention in the Asian region. He added: “Transboundary cooperation has critical relevance for our country and is vital. It requires a comprehensive, integrated and strategic approach”.
In addition, the parties discussed the core aspects of interaction between the two countries, both in bilateral and multilateral formats, given that such interaction has the nature of a strategic partnership. The ministers commended the advancement of trade and economic collaboration, which, according to mutual opinion, has unconditional priority. The Intergovernmental Commission on Economic Cooperation, the Business Council and the Strategic Council are successfully functioning, and the Hungarian Trading House has opened in Astana, while the necessary contractual framework has been created in the economic field, and direct flights between the capitals have been launched. Hungary annually allocates 200 educational grants for Kazakh citizens and intends to increase the number to 250. The Hungarian government is eager to undertake a set of measures for deepening ties with the Turkic Council that welcomed the country as an observer last month at its summit in Cholpon-Ata.
In the course of the meeting with Ms Algayerova, issues of water, environmental, energy and food security were discussed, and the importance of implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals was emphasized.
From this perspective, the Foreign Minister underlined that Kazakhstan is actively working to implement the Convention based on international law. Kazakhstan attaches great value to fostering relations with the UNECE and highly evaluates its role and contribution to establishing and boosting cooperation in areas such as energy, transport, trade, environmental protection, standards, and the use of green technologies. The parties agreed that deepening and enhancing multi-faceted cooperation in Central Asia is of particular significance.