The meeting took place after the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council session.
Excerpts from the transcript:
Mikhail Mishustin: Mr Mamin, I am happy to see you again at our meeting in Minsk during this Eurasian Intergovernmental Council session. Using this opportunity, I would like to ask you to convey my best regards and wishes to President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev and first President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev. I would like to wish good health to both of them.
I would like to emphasise that we greatly appreciate our friendship and partnership with Kazakhstan. Our joint efforts to counter the coronavirus infection have reaffirmed the special character of our relations, which I would call brotherly relations.
Following our telephone conversation on June 30, we decided to support measures on fighting the coronavirus in Kazakhstan. We urgently dispatched a consignment of personal protective equipment, medications and test systems. In addition, we sent a group of Russian specialists to Kazakhstan, which includes epidemiologists and virologists. We will continue cooperating with Kazakhstan and supporting your country in countering the pandemic.
Speaking about the economy, Kazakhstan is our important trade partner. Of course, the pace of our economic cooperation slowed down in the first half of 2020 due to objective reasons – it is connected with the coronavirus infection – and the volumes decreased compared to the same period of 2019 by about 7.5 percent to $6.9 billion. However, I am sure that we will stop this trend and see confident growth by the end of 2020. In this respect, I think we need to resume regular consultations with our Kazakhstani partners on coordinating the macroeconomic policy.
Practical issues of our interaction are being solved by the intergovernmental commission on cooperation headed on our part by Deputy Prime Minister Alexei Overchuk. Its 22th meeting is scheduled to take place in Russia shortly, in the autumn. Also, the intergovernmental commission on Baikonur is working separately, with Deputy Prime Minister Yury Borisov.
We suggest drafting and signing a new programme of long-term economic cooperation between the governments of Russia and Kazakhstan with a roadmap until 2025. The annual interregional forum, attended by the heads of state, is the key venue for discussing promising areas of interaction between Russia and Kazakhstan. Our humanitarian, cultural and educational ties are growing stronger. We generally have a broad agenda. Thus, Mr Mamin, I am passing the floor to you.
Askar Mamin: Mr Mishustin, colleagues,
I am very happy to meet with you and, first of all, to express gratitude for the help which was rendered as part of our joint efforts on combating the pandemic. Following your instructions, Mr Mishustin, the Healthcare Ministry of the Russian Federation provided significant methodological assistance. We received medicines and personal protective equipment. The key is that we gained expertise from the Russian doctors who arrived, have worked and keep working in different regions of Kazakhstan, rendering considerable help to Kazakhstan’s healthcare system. Thank you very much.
Today, we are talking about the slowdown in trade volumes between our countries during the pandemic. Yet I am as confident as you are that we will be able to recover the lost volumes by the year’s end and reach the pre-pandemic rates.
The big issue of our concern is the coronavirus vaccine. We hope the vaccine trials underway in Russia are successful. We know that the first groups of volunteers have been vaccinated and showed very good results. In this connection, Mr Mishustin, we expect Kazakhstan to be among the first countries to acquire the vaccine once it moves into industrial production. This is crucial for the safety and health of our country’s citizens.
Russia is a major supplier of vaccines against other diseases for Kazakhstan. I am sure that our healthcare ministries will continue cooperating.