PM Irakli Garibashvili, who started a two-day visit to Kazakhstan on November 12, met Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev in Astana.
“Kazakhstan has always had good relations with Georgia,” the Kazakh President said, according to his office. “Our bilateral relations have been developing dynamically. We are ready to further strengthen cooperation with Georgia in all directions, both in political and economic [ties].”
The Georgian PM, according to his office, reiterated that Georgia considers Kazakhstan as its “friendly state and important partner.”
“PM Garibashvili thanked President Nazarbayev for supporting Georgia’s territorial integrity and sovereignty,” the Georgian PM’s office said.
Also on November 12 PM Garibashvili met his Kazakh counterpart Karim Massimov.
The Kazakh PM said after the meeting that there is a potential to boost bilateral trade between Georgia and Kazakhstan. Bilateral trade turnover stood at USD 66.3 million in the first nine months of 2014, which was 7.3% y/y decline, according to the Georgian state statistics agency.
“We are interested in broadening of our ties in transport, communication, agriculture sector, tourism and in other sectors,” the Kazakh PM said.
PM Massimov stressed that Kazakhstan is “interested in speedy completion of construction” of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, connecting Azerbaijan to Turkey via Georgia. This railway link, PM Massimov said, will provide for an additional route for Kazakhstan to reach European markets through Caspian Sea and then Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey. According to the Georgian officials the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway is expected to be put into operation before the end of 2015.
“In overall, I think that the visit of the Georgian PM will help to elevate Kazakh-Georgian relations to a more qualitative level of alliance and strategic partnership,” Kazakh PM Massimov said.
The Georgian delegation also includes Economy Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili; Energy Minister Kakha Kaladze; Agriculture Minister Otar Danelia, and Finance Minister Nodar Khaduri.
Energy Minister, Kakha Kaladze, said that relations between the two countries are “friendly, but much more can be done” in bilateral cooperation.
He said that management of the Kazakh-owned gas distributor company in Georgia’s capital Tbilisi will be handed over back to the Kazakh state-owned KazTransGas in the “nearest future”; a “temporary administrator” was appointed by the Georgian state energy regulator in the Tbilisi gas distributor company in 2009.