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17 May 2018
Meeting with leading foreign experts participating in the XI Astana Economic Forum

During the meeting in the format of a round table, global trends in economic development and trade relations, issues of transition to the "green economy", use of alternative energy sources, development of Kazakhstan’s transit and transport potential and the digitization of the economy were discussed.

The experience of the national economy digitalization was shared by former Estonian President Toomas Ilves, who pointed to the need for political will to successfully transfer to the digital economy. Tomas Ilves focused on the importance of digital services development, digital literacy and information security for users.

Alan Wolf, Deputy Director General of the World Trade Organization, spoke about the current situation and prospects for developing the system of international electronic commerce.

Jurgen Rigterink, the EBRD First Vice President, noted the growth and transformation of Kazakhstan's economy, pointing out the importance of using the country's transit and transport potential, the capabilities of the agro-industrial complex and Astana International Financial Centre.

In turn, Mukhisa Kituyi, Secretary-General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, described the positive results achieved by simplifying customs declarations in Kazakhstan.

Rajendra K. Pachauri, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, dwelled on the problems that have arisen because of climate change, highlighting the importance of developing and expanding use of "green technologies". Rajendra K. Pachauri drew attention to the relevance of the topic and the practical results of the international specialized exhibition EXPO-2017 held in Astana.

Rae Kwon Chung, the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, also pointed to the need for a transition to a "green economy", noting the positive aspects of using alternative energy sources.

Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, the Group Chairman and CEO of DP World, expressed interest in further deepening of cooperation in the field of implementing logistics projects. He spoke about the efficiency of using the port of Aktau and Khorgos cross-border cooperation centre.

Dr. Anthony Townsend shared his vision of smart cities development and utilizing artificial intelligence technologies in managing urban processes.

Having heard reports of leading world experts, the Head of State thanked all those present for participating in the Astana Economic Forum and the ideas voiced during the round table.

- In Europe there is the Davos forum, we have the Astana Economic Forum and the Boao Forum for Asia on the Pacific coast. They pursue one goal, i.e. finding a way out of the situation. We would like to cooperate with all world forums and work for the benefit of states and nations. This is an opportunity for progress, promotion and understanding, the President of Kazakhstan said.

Nursultan Nazarbayev noted the contribution of all expert participants to the development and strengthening of the authority of the Astana Economic Forum.

The Head of State dwelled on the history of Kazakhstan's development, and also spoke about the experience of working to preserve and strengthen interethnic and interethnic harmony in the country.

- In the Constitution, at the legislative level and in practice, we have ensured the equality of rights of all citizens. Representatives of all religious faiths live in Kazakhstan and they are given freedom of religion. World leaders of traditional religions decided to hold their congresses in Astana. This year the next VI Congress will take place, the President of Kazakhstan said.

Nursultan Nazarbayev has stressed that Kazakhstan has friendly and collaborative relations with all neighbouring countries.

The Head of State pointed out that stability and harmony had been achieved in our society through measures aimed at improving the well-being of all the citizens.

- Over the years of independence, our economy has grown 25 times. GDP per capita reached 12 thousand US dollars. Now, thanks to the accumulated funds of the National Fund, we are implementing programs in infrastructure and industrial development, as well as in education and healthcare. Life expectancy in the country has grown by 7 years. We have a young educated generation and ambitiously looking forward, the President of Kazakhstan noted.

In conclusion, Nursultan Nazarbayev once again expressed his gratitude to the AEF participants, stressing the importance of their proposals and ideas for the country’s further development.

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