President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev hopes that China will lift all the trade restrictions on the Kazakhstani-Chinese border imposed due to the pandemic and the country’s trade volume will rebound, according to the president’s press service.
While delivering a speech at the 4th Chinese International Import Expo via video conference system, President Tokayev highlighted that despite difficulties, the two countries were able to reach 5% growth of $15 billion bilateral turnovers last year.
«We hope all the temporary restrictions which were set on the Kazakhstani-Chinese border will be lifted soon and commodity flows would be restored,» he said.
As Tokayev noted, the COVID-19 pandemic severely affected global trade relations. This has motivated Kazakhstan to intensify its cooperation with other countries interested in the diversification of transport routes and the implementation of new approaches to logistics.
This wasn’t the first time Tokayev touched on the topic of trade with China. In September he said that because the Chinese government decided to close the border, Kazakhstani exporters couldn’t ship their products to China.
In November 2020, at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, China tightened border control over cargo from Kazakhstan, causing delays in shipments because Kazakhstani exporters have also needed to reload their goods from wide-gauge cargo trains to narrow-gauge trains, which are common for China.