Interview with H.E. Mr. Talgat Kaliyev, Charge d’Affairs, Embassy of Kazakhstan.
Your Excellency, what is the significance of December 16 for Kazakhstan?
This year we are entering in a third decade of our independence. During this period, the young state has achieved impressive results in economic and political spheres.Today Kazakhstan is a free-market economy with GDP more than $11 000 per capita. The country holds 51st position in the Annual World Economic Rating of competiveness of national economies. The volume of foreign investments to Kazakhstan amount to almost $ 150 bln. Kazakhstan is committed to democratic principles and values based on fundamental freedoms and human rights.What we have today – wealth, economic growth, social harmony – is due to century-long pursuit of Kazakh people to freedom and sovereignty. That’s why Independence Day for people of Kazakhstan means realization of their dreams and intentions, a freedom to choose their own life.
What can you tell us about the place and role that Kazakhstan is playing today in the world?
Over 21 years of independence Kazakhstan became economically sustainable democratic state, a respectful member of the international community. In the past two decades, Kazakhstan has established diplomatic relations with 145 states worldwide. Kazakhstan now has 84 overseas diplomatic missions. We have accredited diplomats in Astana from 109 foreign countries, regional and international organizations.The cornerstone of Kazakhstan’s foreign policy aimed to further strengthening international peace and security. As a result Kazakhstan chaired a number of international organizations like the OSCE, Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Shanghai Cooperation Organization. Kazakhstan has become a player on the global stage. It is actively engaged in solving pressing global issues and in the formation of a new world order. The result of active cooperation in various fields has been the signing of more than three thousand treaties at the interstate, intergovernmental and interdepartmental level with foreign states and international organizations.Acting on the world political arena as a unique international mediator and a reliable, long-term partner, Kazakhstan received a new global platform for dialogue and promotion of its initiatives. The results confirm that our state has successfully coped with a new level of tasks and responsibilities.
How do you assess the bilateral relations between Kazakhstan and Romania?
This is a very significant year to our nations – we celebrate the 20th anniversary of establishment diplomatic relations between Kazakhstan and Romania.During this short period, our states have achieved significant progress in political, trade, cultural and humanitarian areas, as well as a cooperation in multilateral forums. We will always remember with deep gratitude that Romania was among first countries that recognized the independence of Kazakhstan.It should be mentioned that the volume of bilateral trade last year reached almost 2.5 bln. US dollars which exceeds almost for 2 times level of 2010. Kazakhstan’s investments in Romania currently amount to about 4 billion U.S. dollars. The one of the largest investment of Kazakhstan abroad is here in Romania. From 1993 to 2011 the Romanian investments into Kazakhstan exceeded 750 mln. US dollars.The main directions of our economic cooperation are the energy sector, mechanical engineering, metallurgy, transport and light industry. 13 Romanian-Kazakhstan joint enterprises work in Romania. There are 38 joint Kazakhstan-Romanian ventures registered in Kazakhstan.It has been largely made possible due to the acquisition by national energy company KazMunayGas of Rompetrol company. As a result of this project, Romania has become the economic gateway for Kazakhstan to the European market.We support the expansion of Romanian business in Kazakhstan, especially in agriculture, energy, infrastructure and communications spheres. Another priority remains strengthening cultural and humanitarian ties between our states. I would like to emphasize that Astana has created all conditions for the development of the Romanian Diaspora in Kazakhstan. More than 20 thousands of citizens of Romanian origin live in our country. They make a worthy contribution to the prosperity of their homeland – Kazakhstan, and to the strengthening of the Kazakh-Romanian friendship.
What are the most interesting experiences you have lived during your term here in Romania?
First of all I would like hail a hospitality of the Romanian people. I was also impressed by the richness of Romanian traditional culture. I admire the beauty of Romanian countryside.