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Kazakhstan ready to supply grain to Sri Lanka

21 november 2012, 15:42
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Kazakhstan Prime-Minister Serik Akhmetov. Photo by Danial Okassov©
Kazakhstan Prime-Minister Serik Akhmetov. Photo by Danial Okassov©
Kazakhstan is ready to export grain to Sri Lanka, Tengrinews.kz reports citing Kazakhstan Prime-Minister Serik Akhmetov as saying at Kazakhstan-Sri Lankan business forum in Astana.

“Speaking of agriculture, Kazakhstan is one of the top 10 grain exporters. We are ready to consider exporting grain to your country,” Serik Akhmetov said.

According to him, Kazakhstan grain is currently supplied to over 70 countries. Kazakhstan exports up to 12 million tons of grain, including flour, during a the marketing year.

According to Kazakhstan Prime-Minister, economic cooperation of the two countries “is not at the level our countries would like it to be”. He noted that it was necessary to jointly unleash the potential and the capacities of Kazakhstan and Sri Lanka to make the cooperation more successful.

The Prime-Minister suggested that Sri Lankan entrepreneurs and government study prospects of launching joint projects.

“For example, we have a good experience in mining, while Sri Lanka has a need for establishment of connections with partners in this area,” Serik Akhmetov said.

Speaking of tourism, Kazakhstan head of the government mentioned that Kazakhstan had many unique sights that could be of interest to visitors and investors. He also noted that “our tourists are ready to go to Ceylon to find out more about the far but spiritually close country”.

Kazakhstan Prime-Minister also noted that Kazakhstan was actively working to attract investments. According to him, Kazakhstan is ranked first in Central Asia and second in CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) by the volume of direct foreign investments.

“Over the past 20 years Kazakhstan has attracted around $160 billion. We are ranked 47th out of 183 countries in the World Bank’s business rating of 2012, being far ahead of CIS countries and Europe,” Serik Akhmetov said.

According to him, there are around 10 thousand companies with foreign participation operating in Kazakhstan and the country is one of the top 10 with best conditions protecting its investors’ interests.

“Kazakhstan is actively diversifying and modernizing its economy. The State Program of Accelerated Industrial-Innovative Development has been implemented for last 3 years. Sri Lankan companies can take part in it as well,” Serik Akhmetov emphasized.

He added that the existing Customs Union of Kazakhstan, Russia and Belarus is a major market with the agregate gross domestic product of over $2 trillion that creates many opportunities for Sri Lanka.

“The common trade rules and common customs territories created by the CU member-countries will be a good advantage for potential investors. I hope that businessmen of our countries will find and open the doors to each other, find the possibilities for communication and cooperation. I think that the visit of Mister President of Sri Lanka will boost this cooperation,” Serik Akhmetov said.

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