Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan's working visit to the Republic of Kazakhstan
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan arrived in the Republic of Kazakhstan on a working visit.
The Prime Minister was met at the Nur Sultan Nazarbayev International Airport by the Deputy Prime Minister of Kazakhstan, Minister of Trade and Integration Bakhyt Sultanov.
The Prime Minister will take part in the sitting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council in the capital Nur-Sultan. The narrow format meeting will be held on February 24, and the expanded format meeting will be helf on February 25.
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan participated in the regular sitting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council in Nur Sultan.
The narrow-format sitting of the Intergovernmental Council took place today. Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin, Prime Minister of Belarus Roman Golovchenko, Prime Minister of Kazakhstan Alikhan Smailov, Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan Akylbek Japarov and Chairman of the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission Mikhail Myasnikovich participated in the sitting.
A number of issues related to the development of integration mechanisms in various spheres in the Eurasian space were discussed at the sitting, in particular, related to industry, customs procedures, information systems, e-commerce, transport and other topics.
The expanded-format sitting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council is scheduled for February 25.
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and the Heads of Government of the EEU member states met with the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev.
The President of Kazakhstan welcomed the heads of delegations of the EEU countries and expressed hope that the sitting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council in Nur-Sultan will be fruitful.
In his speech, Prime Minister Pashinyan, in particular, noted that the President of Kazakhstan was right in noting that today's sitting coincides with the drastic aggravation of the geopolitical situation. "It is obvious that we are in a sensitive period, in sensitive geopolitical tectonic processes, and in this context, of course, the Eurasian Economic Union is an important format to develop the economies of our countries.
Of course, it is obvious that sanctions will have a clear impact on the economic climate in the Eurasian region, and in this regard, we need to discuss what operative decisions we should make to minimize these negative consequences and if possible, bypass them by taking appropriate steps.
You are right. The results of 2021 are quite positive for the Eurasian Economic Union, because, in fact, last year was already a crisis year, but the total volume of trade and economic ties within the EEU, trade turnover has increased, which is quite a positive signal for all of us," the Prime Minister of Armenia said.
Nikol Pashinyan stressed that there is a potential for expansion of the Eurasian economic region. "There are observer states with which we cooperate quite effectively. There is also some interest from other countries to strengthen ties with the Eurasian Economic Union. I think this is a generally positive process, and I hope that the Eurasian Economic Union, we all will succeed in implementing a policy that in the current situation will strengthen the EEU as an economic platform, will continue to give impetus to the development of the economies of our countries," PM Pashinyan said.
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, who is on a working visit in Nur Sultan, met with President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev.
Welcoming Prime Minister Pashinyan, the President of Kazakhstan, in particular, noted, “Dear Nikol Vovaevich, I am very glad to see you, the relations between Kazakhstan and Armenia are developing steadily. This year we mark the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, a very important year. An open political dialogue has been established between us at the top and high levels, parliamentary, cultural and humanitarian ties are developing. You know that we have the warmest feelings for Armenia and the Armenian people, I personally have great respect for you and the Armenian people. I think I know the history of your people quite well, I appreciate the achievements in culture and other spheres.
In practice, we are allies in the Collective Security Treaty Organization, the Eurasian Economic Union, so I think that just these relations between our countries are considered the most optimal. As for Kazakhstan, we will continue to work in that direction."
In turn, Prime Minister Pashinyan noted. "Dear Kassym-Jomart Kemelovich, I am glad to meet you. This is our first face-to-face meeting this year, but we have talked on the phone many times. I am very glad that after the events that took place in Kazakhstan, normal life has been fully restored, and we are already discussing our further economic cooperation in the Eurasian Economic Union, further development of the Eurasian Economic Area.
I would like to emphasize that I am glad that the crisis management mechanisms of the Collective Security Treaty Organization have finally worked. You know that this was the priority of the presidency of the Republic of Armenia. We have always believed that the CSTO rapid crisis response mechanisms should work properly. Unfortunately, Armenia was in a situation when we thought that the mechanism should work, but, unfortunately, that did not happen. After that, we became the CSTO chairing country and announced that this is one of our priorities. I am very glad that we were able to launch that mechanism when it was necessary. I would like to thank you once again for your warm words and hospitality."
During the meeting the interlocutors discussed various issues on the agenda of the Armenian-Kazakh relations, touched upon a number of topics related to the integration processes.
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan attended the regular sitting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council in Nur Sultan, which was attended by Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin, Prime Minister of Belarus Roman Golovchenko, Prime Minister of Kazakhstan Alikhan Smailov, Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan Akylbek Japarov, Chairman of the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission Mikhail Myasnikovich, and Prime Minister of Uzbekistan Abdulla Aripov, an observer state in the EEU.
In his speech PM Pashinyan particularly said,
“Honorable members of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council,
Dear participants of the meeting,
First of all, let me thank our Kazakh partners for hosting today's meeting at a high level.
Taking this opportunity, dear Alikhan Askhan, I would like to congratulate you once again on your appointment as Prime Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan. I am confident that your rich experience will make a significant contribution to both the development of Kazakhstan and the deepening of our integration union.
I sincerely welcome the Prime Minister of the Republic of Uzbekistan Abdulla Nigmatovich Aripov and reaffirm my readiness to develop cooperation within the framework of joint programs with observer countries, including in terms of separate initiatives of the Eurasian Economic Union.
I would like to note with satisfaction the positive results and trends registered in 2021 in the sphere of bilateral trade between our countries. It is important that in the face of epidemiological limitations and global economic shocks, work within the Union continue in a coordinated manner.
Moreover, in 2020, due to external factors such as the slowdown in the growth of global trade and industrial production, in the light of decline in bilateral trade, the Armenian economy ensured a significant increase in mutual trade with the EEU countries. The trade turnover in 2021 increased by 20.6% as compared to the previous year, amounting to 2.7 billion US dollars. The volume of exports from Armenia to EEU countries increased by 25.2% in the same period. At the same time, the growth rates of exports in bilateral trade are higher than the growth rates of exports of Armenian products to third countries. Fresh and processed agricultural products, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, textile and footwear products, as well as products of a number of other industries in demand in the EEU member states ensured the highest growth rates.
Along with the growth of export volumes, the imports from the Union countries to Armenia have also increased. Thus, imports by country of origin increased by 18.5%.
We hope that this year the cooperation will be no less effective, including due to the progress in the main spheres of the Union's integration and implementation of new initiatives.
It would not be an exaggeration to say that such results have been made possible thanks to the coordinated efforts of national governments and Union bodies. We have all reformatted our work in favor of more practical action, quick decision-making for the benefit of our citizens and business. At this stage, it is very important to maintain the exisiting pace, to continue developing mechanisms for jointly responding to economic challenges.
Today, the level of development of digital technologies plays a decisive role in the competitiveness of countries and economic unions. The Republic of Armenia considers the transition to a digital economy as a key driver of economic growth, actively participates in and supports the formation and implementation of the Union's digital agenda.
In this context, I would like to emphasize the importance of implementing the Eurasian network project of industrial cooperation, subcontracting and technology transfer. Industrial cooperation between the countries of the Union should be aimed at deepening cooperation in priority areas, eliminating trade barriers, developing import substitution, introducing innovations, and creating new high-tech industries.
I would like to note that Armenia has capabilities in the field of microelectronics, which allow to produce complex electronic products, which can also be an important step in the development of cooperation between microelectronics enterprises within our Union.
In addition, we attach importance to the expansion of industrial cooperation in the field of civil aviation.The development of this direction will allow manufacturers to focus their efforts on their own production of the most demanded products.
In this regard, it is necessary to expand the tools of state support for industry in the countries of the Union, and the possible directions of their progressive convergence.
Discovering the digital potential of the Union, I cannot fail to mention the signing of the agreements "On the use of navigation seals on the cargo track in the EEU" and "On the mechanism of traceability of goods". The application of the provisions of the agreements is aimed at providing long-distance digital escort for cross-border transportation of goods, simplification of the procedure for their customs clearance at the border, and ultimately aimed at increasing the transparency of transportation, which will also have a positive impact on the development of transport services. The diversification of transport infrastructure will stimulate the growth of trade within the Union, the export of goods to foreign markets, as well as the development of transit transport corridors.
No less important is the development of e-commerce, which not only is rapidly gaining momentum, changing the consumer behavior of the world market, but also expands its cross-border capabilities. At the same time, it is necessary to accelerate the work on improving the e-commerce taxation mechanism within the Union, in accordance with the best global experience of tax administration.
Finally, taking into account the fact that Kyrgyzstan took over the presidency of the Eurasian Economic Union in 2022, I would like to wish success to our partners and reaffirm the readiness of the Republic of Armenia to cooperate with the presiding country and the member states in favor of further Eurasian integration.
I am confident that our joint efforts will be successful both within the Union and at the national level for the benefit of our citizens.
Thanks for attention".
Issues related to Uzbekistan's participation in separate initiatives within the EEU, macroeconomic situation of the EEU countries, proposals for economic development, traceability of goods within the Union, further cooperation in the field of industry were discussed during the sitting.
It was decided to hold the next meeting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council in Belarus in June this year.
The Prime Minister’s working visit to Kazakhstan is over.