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Astana hosts ministerial meeting of landlocked countries

16 May 2018 14:01
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Astana hosts ministerial meeting of landlocked countries

ASTANA. KAZINFORM - The Ministerial Meeting of Landlocked Developing Countries (LLDCs) on Trade and Transport has kicked off in Astana today, Kazinform reports.

Themed Achieving the SDGs in Landlocked Developing Countries through Connectivity and Trade Facilitation, the two-day meeting brought together transport and trade ministers of 32 landlocked developing countries, UN officials, reps of regional and sub-regional organizations and financial institutions, NGOs, and more.

During the meeting, participants mainly focused on challenges, opportunities and best practices in improving transport connectivity for the LLDCs including both the hard and soft infrastructure since the adoption of the Vienna Program of Action.

While addressing the gathering, Zhenis Kassymbek, Minister for Investment and Development of Kazakhstan, noted presently there are 48 landlocked countries in the world. They have no opportunity to develop sea trade like the sea-faring nations.

He also stressed that lion's share of global trade turnover - some 90% accounts for the seaborne trade.

According to the minister, the work carried out by Kazakhstan in this direction fully corresponds to the 2030 Agenda since the SDGs directly influence the progress and the future of developing countries.

"We do realize that sustainable transport is the key factor and that is why it is crucial to take into account the recommendations of the high-level meetings of landlocked developing countries on transport and trade held over the past two years," Minister Kassymbek added.

Participants of the meeting also debated promotion of international trade in LLDCs and enhancing the implementation of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement.

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