Mikhail Mishustin's meeting with first President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev

The meeting was held as part of the Prime Minister’s working visit to the Republic of Kazakhstan.

Mikhail Mishustin's meeting with first President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev

Excerpts from the transcript:

Nursultan Nazarbayev: Mr Mishustin, it is a pleasure to welcome you. I will join in the congratulations on your appointment to this position, which is important not only for Russia but for the entire region and the world. You have taken office at a time that is very difficult both for Russia and globally. The situation is not simple, but your experience and achievements prove that you are the right person for this job.

In Almaty, you discussed digitisation. Mr Medvedev and I discussed artificial intelligence several years ago and agreed that it was time to start working together in this area. We even initiated a group back then, but the work eventually died out. Now, upon my instruction, we hold this conference every year, and it has proved useful. Russia and Kazakhstan should cooperate closely in all areas.

Mr Mishustin, my career spanned a long period of time: I served as Prime Minister of Kazakhstan during the Soviet Union's final years and witnessed its collapse. I met with many prime ministers, starting with [Ivan] Silayev, then [Yevgeny] Primakov, Viktor Chernomyrdin and all successive prime ministers of Russia. We cooperated with all of them. We made prompt joint efforts to conduct reforms and develop programmes, and our communication was successful. I hope we will continue this tradition.  Over the years of my work, I made every effort to strengthen relations between the Russian Federation and Kazakhstan, and I see our current relations as an example to neighbouring countries. I would very much like it to always remain the way it is.  

Mikhail Mishustin: Thank you, Mr Nazarbayev. It will definitely remain like this.

First, let me thank you for this meeting. We worked in Almaty for two days in wonderful conditions and a hospitable atmosphere. My first foreign visit is symbolically taking place in Kazakhstan.

Nursultan Nazarbayev: It has been two weeks since you took office, and Kazakhstan is the first country you are visiting.

Mikhail Mishustin: Absolutely. We always had warm relations with our colleagues prior to my appointment.

I would also like to take the opportunity to convey best wishes from President of Russia Vladimir Putin to you.

Yesterday, Mr Mamin and I talked about a wide range of issues, and today Mr Tokayev and I discussed bilateral relations and relations in the Eurasian Economic Union.

I should note that I was very impressed with how your capital, Nur-Sultan, looks today. We arrived late at night, and in the morning I saw a wonderful and modern city out of my window.

Nursultan Nazarbayev: Despite my objections, the new President made this decision to rename the capital. Frankly, I don’t feel completely comfortable about it.

Mikhail Mishustin: You built this city, Mr Nazarbayev. I think it was the right thing to do.