The state visit of the President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev to Uzbekistan will take place on December 21-22.
The visit will be one of the first foreign visits of the leader of Kazakhstan after his re-election as President of the country, which indicates a high level of interaction and commitment to further strengthen the allied relations of the two states.
It should be noted that the Central Asian region has recently become a center of international diplomacy and political activity. Only recently, a number of multilateral high-level meetings have been held in the capitals of Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, as well as the ancient city of Samarkand. Among them are the summits of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (Samarkand, September) and the Organization of Turkic States (Samarkand, November), Meetings on Interaction and Confidence-building Measures in Asia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (Astana, October), summit meetings in the formats “Central Asia–Russia” and “Central Asia–EU” (Astana, October).
The leaders of Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan are steadily promoting the agenda of good neighborliness and regional partnership, realizing that the long-term and sustainable development of each country is inextricably linked with the stability and well-being of the entire region. As a result of joint efforts, a completely new political atmosphere has been formed in Central Asia. Regular Consultative meetings of the heads of Central Asian states, the initiative to hold which was put forward by the President of Uzbekistan in 2017 during the 72nd session of the UN General Assembly, have become an effective mechanism.
Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan are good neighbors with historical, spiritual and cultural affinity, as well as reliable strategic partners who contribute to strengthening the potential of Central Asia, ensuring peace and prosperity throughout the region.
Diplomatic relations between the two States were established on November 23, 1992. Throughout the history of Uzbek-Kazakh cooperation, the parties have demonstrated an exemplary model of bilateral and multilateral cooperation in the socio-political, trade, economic, cultural and humanitarian spheres.
A powerful impetus to cooperation at a new stage was given by the state visit of President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev to Kazakhstan on March 22-23, 2017 and the state visit of President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev to Uzbekistan, held on April 14-15, 2019. As a result of these visits, over 20 intergovernmental and interdepartmental documents were signed, as well as packages of agreements in the field of trade and economic cooperation.
Strengthening friendship and good-neighborliness with Kazakhstan is one of the most important priorities of Uzbekistan’s foreign policy. The two countries support each other in matters of international politics, fruitfully cooperate within the framework of such international organizations as the UN, SCO, CIS, Economic Cooperation Organization, Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Organization of Turkic States, International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea, and others. The positions of the parties on many issues of regional and international importance are similar or close.
Kazakhstan is one of the important trade and economic partners of Uzbekistan. Over the past five years, the trade turnover between our countries has been steadily growing, despite the consequences of the pandemic. In January-November 2022, this figure amounted to 4.2 billion US dollars. Following the results of the state visit of President Shavkat Mirziyoyev to Kazakhstan in 2021, a practical Action Plan was signed to bring the trade turnover between the two countries to $ 10 billion in the next five years.
Today there are more than 1100 Kazakhstani enterprises operating in Uzbekistan, and more than 1400 enterprises with Uzbek capital in Kazakhstan.
The sphere of transport communications is one of the priority areas for the development of the Uzbek–Kazakh partnership. The highways and railways of our countries are mutually integrated. This important communication network also performs a transit function for third States. Among the promising projects in this area, it should be noted the construction of a new corridor on the Uchkuduk – Kyzyl-Orda section.
Other points of growth of bilateral trade and economic cooperation in various sectors of the economy are investments, industrial cooperation, cooperation in the agricultural industry, energy, pharmaceuticals and construction.
To give additional impetus to these efforts, it was decided to create a joint International center for industrial Cooperation.
Interregional contacts are becoming the driver of increasing interaction. Since 2018, a new mechanism of bilateral cooperation has been launched – the Forum of Interregional Cooperation. To date, three such forums have been held, the last of them was held on November 25-26, 2021 in Turkestan (Kazakhstan). The heads of the border regions of the two countries closely cooperate in the issues of mutual supplies of products and the development of new cooperation projects.
Cultural and humanitarian cooperation between Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan is carried out on the basis of the intergovernmental Agreement on deepening cooperation in the fields of culture, health, science, education, tourism and sports dated January 10, 1994. Direct contacts are maintained between scientific and educational institutions of the two countries in the field of exchange of teachers and students, educational and methodological materials. Universities in Uzbekistan have existing cooperation agreements with more than 50 universities in Kazakhstan.
Fruitful cooperation between the Academies of Sciences of the two countries is traditionally carried out at the level of specialized institutes. Representatives of Kazakhstan regularly take part in the international music festival “Shark Taronalari” in Samarkand.
The dialogue of the heads of State invariably emphasizes the commitment to further intensification of cooperation in the fields of science, education, culture, art, tourism, sports and other fields.
It should be noted that today more than 800 thousand Kazakhs live in Uzbekistan, and the Uzbek community in Kazakhstan has about 500 thousand people. They make a significant contribution to the development and prosperity of the two states, as well as the strengthening of friendly and fraternal ties between our peoples. Thus, more than 600 Uzbek citizens of Kazakh nationality and more than 20 citizens of Kazakhstan – Uzbeks were awarded state awards of the two countries.
Since 1992, the Kazakh Cultural Center has been operating in Uzbekistan, which has about 30 regional and regional branches. All conditions have been created for representatives of the Kazakh nationality in our country to preserve their original culture, traditions and language. Thus, 400 schools conduct classes in the Kazakh language, there are 162 schools with only the Kazakh language of instruction. Faculties and departments of Kazakh language and literature have been established at Tashkent State Pedagogical University named after Nizami, Karakalpak State University, Gulistan State University, Nukus, Jizzakh and Navoi State pedagogical institutes to receive higher and professional education in the Kazakh language.
In November 2022, the Days of Culture of Uzbekistan were successfully held in Astana, which once again demonstrated the cultural and spiritual closeness of the two peoples, the fortress of good-neighborly and friendly ties formed by history itself.
On December 19, on the eve of the visit, the exhibition “Abai. Heritage of Fraternal Peoples”, dedicated to the life and work of Kazakh writer and thinker Abai Kunanbayev, who preserved the humanistic traditions of the great thinker Alisher Navoi. The opening of the exhibition was a vivid confirmation of the attention paid by the leadership of our country to the preservation and restoration of the Turkic cultural heritage. This event also symbolizes the fortress of friendship between the peoples of our countries.
And today Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan are determined to further strengthen centuries-old friendship, good-neighborliness, mutual trust and full-scale partnership. There is no doubt that the upcoming state visit of President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev to Uzbekistan will enrich the multifaceted cooperation of the two fraternal countries with concrete content and bring bilateral relations to a qualitatively new level.
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