Kazakhstan and EU mark 30 years of diplomatic relations
On February 2, Kazakhstan and the European Union are marking the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations. Over the years, the EU has taken a solid leadership position as Kazakhstan’s largest trade and investment partner. The amount of European capital investments into the country’s economy over the three decades has exceeded US$160 billion, while the indicators of the bilateral trade turnover increased 180-fold. Thus, to date, the EU accounts for one third of the total volume of Kazakhstan’s foreign trade.
“Our relations started after the establishment of diplomatic ties with the signing of the partnership and cooperation agreement. That was in 1995. It was the main framework agreement, which paved the way for European investment, and for the establishment of our relations and mutual trade. The decade later, we signed the first enhanced partnership and cooperation agreement with Kazakhstan. It is now in full force and covers 29 different areas of economy and social life, almost all of them. It provides a foundation and support for the development of further cooperation,” said Kestutis Jankauskas, EU Ambassador to Kazakhstan.
There are about 3,000 companies with the participation of the European capital operating in Kazakhstan. They are represented in all types of sectors. Most of all – in trade and car repair, then in professional, scientific and technical spheres, as well as in financial and insurance activities.
“Just in 30 years of our cooperation the countries of the European Union have invested almost US$77 billion, which accounts for about a half, or 50 percent, of all investment in Kazakhstan. Last year alone, the EU states invested about 800 million. I believe that these figures will continue to grow dramatically in the next few years as part of the agreement on critical minerals, hydrogen, green hydrogen, and investments into ‘green’ energy,” Jankauskas added.
It is worth noting that relations between Kazakhstan and the EU are based not only on trade and investment partnership. They are also being strengthened day by day owing to cultural and humanitarian cooperation. A number of events are planned to mark the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the parties.