Astana-Magdeburg: Enge Freundschaft!

Date of event: 
Tuesday, 21. October 2014

On October 21, Magdeburg, the capital of Saxony-Anhalt (Germany), hosted the Day of the Republic of Kazakhstan’s Economy, dedicated to ‘Kazakhstan-2050’ Strategy: state and prospects of bilateral cooperation in the field of innovation and new technologies in industrialization of the Kazakhstan’s economy.

The Forum was organized by the Embassy of Kazakhstan in Germany together with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Magdeburg, with the support of the Fraunhofer Institute for Automation and Machinery Manufacturing.

The event was attended by a delegation from the Ministry of Investment and Development of Kazakhstan, headed by the Executive Secretary Beibut Atamkulov, as well as over a hundred representatives of German companies, research institutes and organizations involved in the field of innovation and high technology.

The Minister of Science and Economy of Saxony-Anhalt Hartmut Melring, Mayor of Magdeburg Rüdiger, and President of Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the region Klaus Olbricht delivered welcoming addresses on the part of Germany. Notes for their statements can be shortened down to one thing: “Astana-Magdeburg: Enge Freundschaft!” (Close Friendship!). This statement is not a coincidence: last year, the head of the German economy in Central Asia, Jörg Hatch stated that Germany's bilateral trade with Kazakhstan is about 85% of the Germany’s total turnover with the Central Asian countries.

In their speeches the Kazakh speakers presented policies and promising areas of cooperation in the field of innovation and new technologies in the context of priorities identified by the head of the State in his Address to the nation in January, and the country's development strategy ‘Kazakhstan-2050’. In particular, it was noted that in recent years Kazakhstan has implemented a series of comprehensive measures to form a complete innovation system and support initiatives in this area, as well as introduced a system of technological development planning in the country.

The German party, in turn, stressed that the Kazakhstan Government's measures to improve the investment climate in the country have created favorable conditions for the development of innovations and new technologies.

According to German participants, practical contribution to the process is designed to bring Kazakh-German innovative dialogue, which is implemented by the German Society for International Cooperation together with their Kazakhstan partners.

During the following panel discussions a number of promising joint projects were discussed, in which the parties confirmed their readiness to enhance cooperation on development of scientific research centres and modernization of several industrial enterprises in Kazakhstan.

Quick info

Saxony-Anhalt is a landlocked federal state of Germany, one of new states entering in the Federal Republic of Germany after the accession of the East Germany.

Its important sectors of the economy are agriculture and chemical industry. Soils of Magdeburg Plain are among the most fertile ones in Germany. Generally, grain, sugar beet, potatoes and vegetables are cultivated here. Also, Saxony-Anhalt is known outside Germany as a centre of seed production. In addition, there are many food industry enterprises including sugar factories in Saxony-Anhalt. In Magdeburg and Dessau a key role is played by heavy transport engineering industry.

After the reunification of Germany Saxony-Anhalt attracted the majority of foreign investments. Today, Total ensures the oil refining operations in Leuna, Dow Chemical has the production facilities in Schkopau and a chemical giant Bayer has its enterprise in Bitterfeld. The nature enthusiasts are also attracted by Mount Brocken 1,141 metres in height. Its peak is steeped in myths: on Walpurgisnacht on May 1, it becomes a place of witches' Sabbath. Many historical figures as Russian Empress Catherine the Great, Martin Luther, Kurt Weill, George Frideric Handel, Otto von Bismark, Friedrich Nietzsche are the natives of this land. 

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