DUBAI — The UAE and Kazakhstan have enjoyed fruitful bilateral ties in recent years, and the Turkic state is keen to continue this with more investments and cooperation between the two nations.
Kazakhstan recognises the UAE as one of the key Gulf countries in the Middle East, citing the latter’s balanced and peaceful policy as key to strengthening the region, according to an e-mailed statement from Arman Tynybek, counselor of the permanent mission of Kazakhstan to the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, or OIC.
The two countries have engaged in several agreements, particularly in the sectors of banking, commerce, industry and transport. Several delegations have been sent to each other’s country – including a number of visits by the President, His Highness Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan to the Kazakh capital Astana — successfully forging agreements on cooperation and development.
The UAE has expressed its support to Kazakhstan, particularly in the need to develop more technologies for the oil and gas industry.
“Kazakhstan’s robust growth for the past decade has been based on exporting raw materials, notably oil, gas, and metals, including uranium. But making the transition to industrial diversity is a major development goal for the country,” the statement said. It also revealed that Kazakhstan produced 374 billion cubic metres of natural gas in 2010, with exports reaching 9.1 billion cubic metres. Through 2011, it is expected that the country will increase gas production up to 42 billion cubic metres.
Kazakhstan also produced 80 million tonnes of oil and gas condensate in 2010, expected to be surpassed this year. The country’s ultimate goal is to be among the top 10 world oil and gas producers by 2015.
“The Kazakh government has also outlined a developmental strategy for its hydrocarbon resources, an abundant resource that the country views as a key to its future growth. It intends to double its GDP by 2015, while cutting energy use per unit of GDP in half,” the statement said.
The potential of Kazakhstan’s agro-industry is of interest to the UAE’s public and private sector companies.
The recent meeting of the OIC in Astana also provided a platform for further cooperation between the UAE and Kazakhstan, particularly to tackle the issues faced by the Muslim community. The OIC — the second-largest international organisation after the United Nations — is currently chaired by Kazakhstan.
The meeting was well-represented by the UAE, with a delegation from the UAE Foreign Ministry, the Administration of the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and the UAE Agency for Religious Affairs in attendance.
The event produced 110 resolutions in political, socio-economic, scientific and humanitarian fields adopted by the participants.
It was also during this event that the new Charta of the group was adopted, the OIC Ten-Year Programme of Action was established, the present OIC name was changed from the Organisation of the Islamic Conference, and the creation of the long-awaited OIC Permanent Commission on Human Rights.
At the event, representatives from the UAE attended a high-level meeting on cooperation in Central Asia and the OIF, and in an interactive session entitled “Strengthening of Political Stability and Economic Development in the Muslim World.”