Kazak President Nazarbayev arrives in India to boost bilateral ties

January 23rd, 2009 - 11:23 pm ICT by ANI  

Manmohan Singh

By Ashok Dixit

New Delhi, Jan.23 (ANI): The President of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev, arrived here on Friday on a four-day official visit.

Minister of State for Industry, Ashwini Kumar, received the Kazakhstan President, who will be the chief guest at the Republic Day ceremony this year.

The Kazakh President during this visit will also hold delegation-level talks with External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee on behalf of the Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, who is to undergo coronary artery bypass surgery on Saturday.

The two leaders are scheduled to sign agreements in the presence of President Pratibha Devisingh Patil.

The Government of India s expected to sign a civil nuclear agreement with Kazakhstan, which is known to have the world’’s second largest reserves of uranium.

Kazakhstan will be the fourth country after the US, France and Russia with which India will have civil nuclear cooperation since the US deal was signed during the George W.Bush regime in the United States of America.

On Jan.10, the visiting Zhanar S. Aitzhanova, Kazakhstans Vice Minister of Industry and Trade and her countrys chief negotiator at World Trade Organisation (WTO) accession negotiations in an exclusive interview to Asian News International (ANI) had revealed that in the wake of India getting clearance from the 45-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) to conduct civilian nuclear commerce with other countries, Kazakhstan, which possesses the second largest uranium reserves in the world after Australia, was actively considering a proposal to offer uranium to India.

India has been very positive and fully supports our endeavor for accession to the WTO. We are very much looking forward to bilateral relations between India and Kazakhstan being further strengthened during the forthcoming visit of our President Nursultan Nazarbayev (between January 23 and 26), Minister Zhanar S. Aitzhanova had stated.

The Kazhak minister had stated that during the forthcoming visit of President Nazarbayev, India and Kazakstan would be signing three Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs), including one on bilateral cooperation on technical standards and services, an agreement for the protection of intellectual property rights and geographical indications (GI) for products such as Basmati Rice, Alphonso Mangoes and Darjeeling Tea.

We have agreed on future cooperation in various fields like textile products, textile companies to visit India. We also have talked about cooperation in the IT sector, and we have agreed to an Indian proposal to set up an IT training school in Kazakstan, as we believe that foundations and skills have to be taught first before they can applied to larger schemes. We will also be signing an agreement on concession on services, where we will be stipulating very clearly terms under which Indian companies can provide their services, particularly in interesting spheres like IT, construction and architecture. We hope and look forward to concrete outcomes of these negotiations, and they are taking place these days, and will continue during the visit, Aitzhanova had stated.

She had also stated that Kazakhstan was keen to give Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status to India, as it viewed New Delhi as a close ally and an emerging economic giant. (ANI)

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