Kazakhstan’s president Nursultan Nazarbayev has attended the Fourth Summit of the Cooperation Council of Turkic Speaking States in the Turkish city of Bodrum, Tengrinews reports citing the official website of the president.
The Turkic Council (short for the Cooperation Council of Turkic Speaking States) is an intergovernmental organization composed of four countries: Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Turkey. The primary goal of the organization is to promote political and economic cooperation among the Turkic-speaking countries, which share a common history and cultural ties.
During his speech Nazarbayev outlined four priorities, which he believes would help the Turkic world develop. First of all, he stressed the importance of economic development. “The total GDP of the six independent states [he meant four member states and two observer states of the organization - Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan] exceeds $1 trillion 200 billion. In the meanwhile, the share of the five countries makes only 6% in Kazakhstan’s foreign trade. This is why we need to strengthen our shared economic potential,” Nazarbayev said.
In this respect Nazarbayev turned the attention of his colleges to the new opportunities provided by the Eurasian Economic Union. He said that Kazakhstan's joining the Union opens up a market of 170 million people to producers from the Turkic space.
Transport was another priority area outlined by Nazarbayev who said that the Turkic world needs to put newly created transportation projects to efficient use. "Kazakhstan's section of the Western Europe-Western China highway is close to completion. By the end of this year construction of the railway [from Kazakhstan] to Turkmenistan and Iran will be completed, which will provide access to the Persian Gulf. The railway that starts in China and stretches to the Caspian Sea across the territory of our country is expected to be completed next year. We are also planning to increase the capacity of the Aktau sea port [at the Caspian Sea]. In this respect, it is important to develop cooperation between the ports in Aktau, Baku [Azerbaijan] and Samsun [Turkey]," the Kazakhstan president said.
The next point Nazarbayev turned his attention to was tourism. The president asserted that attracting foreign tourists will benefit the socio-economic development of the Turkic world. “There are enough natural sights and historically significant places, which are of great importance to the world community. We should unite and modernize the tourism infrastructure together,” he said.
The president suggested using the “Silk Road” brand name to develop a shared tourist product of a distinctively Turkic nature.
He also invited his colleges to consider the possibility of creating a new TV channel that would focus on presenting the Turkic culture to the international community. The president even proposed dedicating the next summit of the Council to the common information and media market as well as its competitive advantages.
The last point in Nazarbayev’s address was a call to strengthen the traditional cultural and humanitarian relations. He noted the importance of such structures as TURKSOI, the Turkic academy, and the Turkic Cultural Heritage Fund. All of these are organizations specifically designed to preserve the historical heritage of the Turkic world, promote its culture and enhance the mutual exchange between the Turkic speaking countries. The Turkic academy in particular can lead the way in finding paths towards a greater Turkic integration, he said. Nazarbayev also said that more young desprofessionals should be trained to and hired to work of these organizations.
In his speech, the President of Kazakhstan firmly stated that the Turkic Council had reached concrete results as an international organization and needed to continue working for benefit of all the member countries.