“President Klaus Iohannis considers it necessary to take all measures to enhance bilateral Kazakh-Romanian relations,” said Ambassador Nurbakh Rustemov during a briefing at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on December 19, when commenting on the ceremony for the presentation of credentials to the newly elected President of Romania. Mr. Rustemov emphasized that this opens a new stage in the development of relations between the two countries.
Diplomatic relations between Kazakhstan and Romania were established 27 years ago. Since this time, a solid foundation of political, economic, cultural and humanitarian cooperation has been laid. The continued mutual support of the international initiatives of the two countries is particularly gratifying. The Ambassador noted that the new EU Strategy for Central Asia was adopted in the first half of 2019 during Romania's presidency of the EU Council. The strategy is designed to revitalize cooperation across the entire spectrum of the EU-CA agenda.
Romania is an important trade partner for Kazakhstan in South-Eastern Europe. The 9-month trade turnover of 2019 between the countries amounted to $1.337 billion, much of which was due to crude oil exports from Kazakhstan. KazMunayGas International (The Rompetrol Group N.V.) makes a significant contribution to the development of the bilateral energy partnership. Mr. Rustemov highlighted that the intention of the Romanian side to enhance friendly relations with Kazakhstan has been confirmed by the decision made by the Romanian authorities on December 5 concerning the debt remaining from the former owners of the Rompetrol Group.
At the same time, Kazakhstan intends to boost the diversification of trade and economic cooperation. In particular, Grampet Group, the largest private rail company in South-Eastern Europe, is interested in investing in the construction of a joint enterprise for the production and repair of freight railway wagons in Kazakhstan. In September 2018, Grampet Group became the first European company to join the Trans-Caspian International Transport Route.
In addition, following negotiations with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Bucharest, an agreement was reached to establish joint enterprises in Kazakhstan concerning engineering and the production of spare rail parts.
Additionally, the Kazakh company NAC Kazatomprom JSC and Romania’s Nuclearelectrica agreed to establish long-term cooperation.
With a view to developing bilateral relations, including tourism, negotiations with Romanian Blue Air on opening direct flights have begun. The Romanian side proposed carrying out test flights between Nur-Sultan and Bucharest in 2020.
Cultural and humanitarian ties between Kazakhstan and Romania are also positive and rapidly developing. Since 2016, Romania has provided annual grants for the training of Kazakh students in its leading universities for natural sciences, humanities, and science and technology. A significant contribution to these relations has also been made by ethnic and cultural societies and communities: "Stefan the Great" (Almaty), "Dacia" (Karaganda), and "Bucovina" (Pavlodar).
A tradition has been established to hold annual ‘Days of Kazakh cinema’ in the cities of Bucharest, Constanta and Cluj. This year, Romanian viewers saw works by Kazakh filmmakers such as “Kazakh Khanate: The Golden Throne” and “Shynyrau”.
In July-August 2019, the Karaganda Academic Orchestra of Folk Instruments, named after Tattimbet, conducted a concert tour covering the major cities of Romania - Bucharest, Constanta and Vaslui. Famous cultural figures of Kazakhstan, composer Tolegen Mukhamedzhanov, opera singer Nurzhamal Usenbayeva, and tenor Nurzhan Bazhekenov, together with the Romanian tenor Calin Bratescu performed in Bucharest on the Independence Day of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
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