Kazakh Delegation Proposes Cooperation at Arab-Central Asian Forum in Doha

The Arab-Central Asian Economic Forum in Doha explores cooperation in tech, tourism, and addressing regional challenges, with strong support for Somalia's sovereignty against the Ethiopia-Somaliland port deal.

Salman Akhtar
New Update
Kazakh Delegation Proposes Cooperation at Arab-Central Asian Forum in Doha

Kazakh Delegation Proposes Cooperation at Arab-Central Asian Forum in Doha

A Kazakh delegation led by Deputy Foreign Minister Alibek Bakayev attended the third Arab Economy and Cooperation Forum with Central Asian states and Azerbaijan in Doha, Qatar on April 30, 2024. The forum, which brought together representatives from the Arab region, Central Asia, and Azerbaijan, aimed to strengthen economic cooperation and address global challenges.

During the forum, the Kazakh delegation proposed cooperation in various sectors and reiterated Kazakhstan's stance on the Middle East conflict. The UAE delegation, represented by the Minister of Energy and the Minister of Economy, emphasized their commitment to strengthening economic ties between Arab countries and Central Asian states, particularly in areas such as technology, artificial intelligence, digital transformation, tourism, and the circular economy.

The forum also highlighted the importance of supporting agricultural cooperation, cultural and scientific exchange, and addressing water scarcity challenges. The first session of this forum was held in 2014 based on a Memorandum of Understanding signed between the foreign ministers of the Central Asian countries, Azerbaijan, and the Secretary General of the League of Arab States.

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Secretary General emphasized the potential for the two regions to form an effective economic bloc, highlighting the promising investment opportunities and large consumer markets. The Turkmen delegation stressed the importance of joint efforts to achieve sustainable economic development, identifying key areas for strengthening cooperation such as trade, industry, transportation, energy, and environmental protection.

On the sidelines of the forum, the Turkmen delegation met with the Qatari Ministry of Foreign Affairs to discuss fostering bilateral relations in various spheres, including political, diplomatic, trade, economic, cultural, and humanitarian areas. The parties highlighted the importance of high-level visits, cultural exchanges, and the work of the Intergovernmental Turkmen-Qatari Commission in strengthening their partnership.

Why this matters: The Arab Economy and Cooperation Forum with Central Asian states and Azerbaijan serves as a platform to enhance economic ties and address shared challenges between the two regions. Strengthening cooperation in various sectors can lead to increased trade, investment, and sustainable development for the participating countries.

The forum participants, including ministers from Arab countries, Azerbaijan, and Central Asian states, strongly supported the Somali government's efforts to preserve its sovereignty over land, sea, and air. They affirmed Somalia's right to defend its lands under the UN Charter and rejected the 'Memorandum of Understanding' signed between Ethiopia and the Somaliland region, considering it a violation of international law and Somalia's sovereignty. The ministers expressed their rejection of any legal, political, commercial, or military implications arising from the memorandum and urged all countries to condemn and reject it, viewing it as a menace to Arab national security and navigation in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden.

Key Takeaways

  • Kazakh, Arab, and Central Asian officials met in Doha to strengthen economic cooperation.
  • UAE emphasized ties in tech, AI, tourism, and circular economy with Central Asia.
  • Forum highlighted agricultural, cultural, and water cooperation between regions.
  • GCC sees potential for an effective economic bloc between Arab and Central Asian states.
  • Forum participants rejected Ethiopia-Somaliland port deal as a threat to Somalia's sovereignty.