Tokayev, Macron attend opening of Kazakhstan-France business forum

Tokayev, Macron attend opening of Kazakhstan-France business forum

Astana, The Gulf Observer: Kazakh and French Presidents Kassym-Jomart Tokayev and Emmanuel Macron attended the opening of the Kazakh-French business forum, according to the reports of the Akorda press service.

Addressing the event, Kazakh President Tokayev pointed out that this year Kazakhstan’s economic growth is estimated at 4.7%, with non-oil sectors demonstrating the most progress. It was noted that the country’s strategic goal is to increase the volume of national economy two times by 2029.

Kazakhstan, the amount of total foreign investments of which surpass the overall investments in other CA countries, places great attention to productive development of economic cooperation with France.

Despite the geopolitical turmoil, last year’s bilateral trade turnover rose 30% to reach $4bn. This positive trend continues this year. Frane is one of the major international investors in our economy with a total of almost $19bn worth of investments. In the first six months of this year, there was a 50% rise in direct foreign investments in Kazakhstan from French partners, demonstrating the high trust in our country, said the Kazakh President.

The President of Kazakhstan stated a number of promising areas if mutual cooperation, including energy sector. The country is among major crude oil supplier to the French market and ready to increase its export. According to Tokayev, there is huge potential in the geological exploration of oil and gas, uranium export, realization of major projects in wind, solar, and hydro energy sectors.

Kazakhstan is the top producer of uranium, providing more than a quarter of nuclear fuel consumed by Europe. As the nuclear energy accounts for 63% of France’s energy sector, there is huge potential for further cooperation. We also share the similar interests with regard to the achievement of zero carbon emissions in the future. France and Kazakhstan are regional pioneers in this sphere, said Tokayev.

Kazakh leader Tokayev also drew attention to the competitive advantages of the Astana International Financial Center (AIFC) regarding investment attraction.

Noting that over 2,100 companies based in 78 countries around the world work in the AIFC, attracting investment capital to Kazakhstan as well as the entire region, the Kazakh President welcomed more French companies in the Center and the idea of opening the first French bank in Kazakhstan.

For his part, French President Macron noted that Kazakhstan is a connecting bridge between Europe and Asia. The French President thanked Tokayev for the readiness to cooperate in many spheres of mutual interest.