After a face-to-face meeting, Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev and President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev held negotiations in an expanded format with the participation of delegations.
President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev saluted members of the Azerbaijani delegation and said:
Ilham Heydarovich, I am pleased to welcome you and members of your delegation to Kazakhstan. You have accepted my invitation to pay an official visit. This is our tradition. You come to Kazakhstan every year and I pay regular visits to your country. This is evidence of the relations between the two countries, between Presidents.
We have discussed the entire spectrum of relations between our countries and touched upon economic, transport, agricultural matters and international cooperation.
Azerbaijan has recently celebrated the 20th anniversary of its independence. We too are preparing to celebrate a similar date in December of this year. On the one hand, these 20 years have been difficult for both our countries, but on the other it was a period when the dreams of our ancestors came true. I think that Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan have passed this period with honor. Despite the known difficulties in your country, the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, Azerbaijan has made great strides over these years, and we congratulate you on that.
Our economy has grown 14 times since 1994. As I mentioned earlier, we have reached a level of $10,000 per capita. We hope to finish this year with an economic growth of 7 per cent and $12,000 per capita. This is a very high indicator. In 2015, it will reach a further $15,000 per capita. In other words, we will be among medium developed countries of the Eastern and Central Europe. We have all the opportunities to do that. I have informed you of the directions of our activities.
We consider Azerbaijan a brotherly and friendly country, our main partner in the Caucasus. I believe that members of our delegations have carried out work in all the directions specified in the documents prepared. If there are any outstanding issues, they will inform us.
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Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev expressed his gratitude for the cordial welcome and said:
Dear Nursultan Abishevich, thank you very much for your congratulations on the 20th anniversary of our independence. I would also like to congratulate you and the fraternal people of Kazakhstan on the forthcoming holiday in advance. You are absolutely right that our countries have demonstrated what they are capable of over these years, achieved impressive results, rapid economic growth and political stability. I would like to congratulate you on the successes your country has achieved under your leadership over these years. These successes are evident in the creative work, a new appearance of cities and beautiful Astana which fascinates everyone.
We are very pleased that Kazakhstan is developing dynamically and effectively under your leadership. Your country has a great potential and the reforms we discussed today are oriented for the future. The existing potential already enables your country to effectively resolve social issues and matters pertaining to the economic reform.
As for our relations, Kazakhstan has always been a friendly and brotherly state for us. This relationship has further strengthened over the years of independence. The economic, transport and agricultural projects we have discussed today will open up opportunities for an even more effective use of the economic cooperation potential between our countries.