Chinese President Xi Jinping meets with Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, Oct. 17, 2023. Tokayev is in Beijing to attend the third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation. (Xinhua/Yao Dawei)
BEIJING, Oct. 17 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday met with Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, who is in Beijing to attend the third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation.
Xi said he is very happy to meet his old friend again. A sound, stable and vibrant China-Kazakhstan relationship is conducive to the development and revitalization of both countries as well as to regional peace and stability, Xi said.
China supports Kazakhstan in safeguarding its independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, Xi said.
No matter how the international situation changes, China and Kazakhstan should pass on the concept of good-neighborliness and friendship from generation to generation, and promote further development of China-Kazakhstan permanent comprehensive strategic partnership, Xi said.
Xi called on the two sides to strengthen cooperation, promote the Belt and Road cooperation to achieve more results, and deliver more benefits to the people of the two countries.
China is willing to continuously facilitate trade and investment with Kazakhstan, expand imports of high-quality and green agricultural products from Kazakhstan, and broaden green energy cooperation with the country, Xi said.
He noted that China is ready to improve connectivity with Kazakhstan and increase the transport capacity, scale and efficiency of China-Europe freight trains.
The two countries should promote exchanges in digital technology including cross-border e-commerce, artificial intelligence, big data and blockchain, Xi said.
He also called for stronger people-to-people and cultural exchanges and closer cooperation at the local level, noting that a mutual visa exemption agreement between the two countries will take effect and that the Kazakhstan tourism year will be launched in China next year.
China firmly opposes external forces interfering in the internal affairs of Central Asian countries, and supports Kazakhstan in performing its duties as the rotating presidency of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, Xi said.
For his part, Tokayev said from day one, Kazakhstan has firmly supported and actively participated in the Belt and Road Initiative.
Over the past decade, China has become a leading country in the world, and the Belt and Road cooperation has yielded remarkable achievements, Tokayev said.
Noting that China is Kazakhstan's forever trustworthy friend and partner, Tokayev said Kazakhstan speaks highly of China's just position and positive role in international affairs, including its efforts to promote the settlement of the Ukraine crisis, and is willing to strengthen multilateral communication and coordination with China.
The two heads of state witnessed the signing of multiple bilateral documents on cooperation in areas including connectivity and economic development.
Senior Chinese officials including Cai Qi and Wang Yi were present at the events. ■
Chinese President Xi Jinping meets with Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, capital of China, Oct. 17, 2023. Tokayev is in Beijing to attend the third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation. (Xinhua/Ding Lin)