At the meeting the two leaders discussed the issues on the international agenda, trade, economic, investment, scientific-technological, cultural and humanitarian cooperation, as well as prospects of cooperation in the field of energy, tourism and agriculture.
Following the talks, President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev and President of the Republic of Korea Lee Myung-bak held a joint briefing for the press.
“First of all I welcome the visit of President of the Republic of Korea, Mr. Lee Myung-bak, which took place at my invitation. Kazakhstan and South Korea are traditional partners. This is our seventh meeting in the last four years. Such an intensive dialogue at the highest level positively affected the bilateral economic cooperation and interaction in various fields. Last year, the trade turnover between our countries reached over US$ 900 million. In the first half of the current year it has exceeded US$ 600 million. South Korea’s investment portfolio for joint business projects now exceeds more than US$ 8 billion,” Nursultan Nazarbayev said.
The President of Kazakhstan emphasized that the South Korean companies actively participate in realization of some large projects in various sectors of the economy of Kazakhstan.
“Two years ago, President Lee Myung-bak and I agreed on construction of the Balkhash Thermal Power Plant. And today we are launching its construction. All design work was carried out and the technologies have been chosen. We will apply the best «green» technology with carbon capture harmful impurities. According to the Korean side, the Balkhash TPP will serve as an example in the construction of such power plants in the world," the President of Kazakhstan said.
Nursultan Nazarbayev pointed out that Kazakhstan-based factories assemble Korean cars. We are also currently working on many large joint projects on extraction of mineral resources. They include the construction of a gas-derived chemicals integrated plant in the Atyrau Region, the development of the Zhambyl oil and gas field, exploration of hydrocarbons in the Kulzhan field.
“This is an incomplete list of the projects, on which now the work is being carried out. Together with Korean companies we will produce rare earth metals in return to exchange of technologies. South Korea is one of the leaders in the Asia-Pacific region. The country always supports our initiatives, in particular, on the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia. The Korean side also backs our application to hold «EXPO-2017». In the field of medicine and pharmaceutics South Korea develops advanced technologies. You all know that in Almaty together with South Korean doctors we carried out an operation to transplant the two bodies of one man. Such technologies could bring substantial benefits to the country," the President of Kazakhstan said.
Nursultan Nazarbayev expressed gratitude to Lee Myung-bak for the contribution to the development of bilateral relations and expansion of cooperation between Kazakhstan and South Korea.
In his speech, President Lee Myung-bak thanked for the warm hospitality extended to the Korean delegation.
“President Nursultan Nazarbayev and I annually meet and discuss measures for the development of interstate cooperation, mutual trust and friendly relations. It is a fact of special importance that this year our countries celebrate the 20th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations. I want to thank Kazakhstan for active participation in the Global Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul and the world exhibition EXPO in Yeosu. Your country has played a significant role in the success of the Seoul Summit," Lee Myung-bak said.
The President of the Republic of Korea emphasized that Kazakhstan has a positive impact on the improvement of the economic situation on a global level as a model for many countries in overcoming the crisis.
“Every time when I come to Kazakhstan, I see how the appearance of the capital city Astana is changing. I feel the dynamic development of Kazakhstan. During today's meeting, we discussed the current state of strategic partnership between our countries and discussed measures for the development of future cooperation. Also during this visit we agreed to strengthen the contacts at the level of small and medium-sized businesses. And the representatives of this segment of the economy will soon visit Kazakhstan. I would like to note that the trade turnover between our countries is rapidly increasing. The South Korean investments to Kazakhstan became the largest among the investments of our state to the CIS countries, including Russia and other Central Asian countries," the President of South Korea added.
Lee Myung-bak also pointed out that the parties have agreed to make maximum efforts for the sustainable development of the cooperation.
"President Nursultan Nazarbayev and I assess with satisfaction the pace of implementation of large joint projects. We agreed to demonstrate the example of mutually beneficial cooperation between our countries, having completed the project of Balkhash thermal power plant on coal fuel ahead of schedule. This will be a good example for the international community. We intend to strengthen mutually beneficial cooperation in the production of railways and high-speed trains based on the combined experience gained during the construction of the Almaty subway. Moreover, we agreed to share technologies and cooperate in implementing the project to create a Science and Technology Park at Nazarbayev University. We plan to work together to introduce and expand the «green growth» in Central Asia. This visit has once again proved that our strategic partnership will further deepen and develop based on trust and achievements gained over the past years,” the President of the Republic of Korea said.
Lee Myung-bak has expressed confidence that this visit will become a basis for strengthening further cooperation between the two countries.