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China, Kazakhstan ink deals
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China and Kazakhstan will jointly develop more than 40 projects in sectors such as natural resources, and otherwise expand bilateral economic cooperation, the countries' premiers agreed yesterday.

Premier Wen Jiabao exchanges documents with Kazakh Prime Minister Karim Masimov yesterday in Beijing. 

The agreements were inked by Premier Wen Jiabao and visiting Kazakh Prime Minister Karim Masimov, as well as other officials and business leaders at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

The documents also covered wheat trade, electricity and preferential loans from the Export-Import Bank of China to the Development Bank of Kazakhstan.

The $300 million in loans will finance projects between the two countries, Export-Import Bank of China governor Li Ruogu said on the sidelines of a China-Kazakhstan commercial forum that coincided with the prime minister's visit.

Kazakhstan resolutely adheres to the one-China policy, supports Beijing's hosting of the Olympics and wishes to contribute to the Games, Masimov said.

Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev, who inaugurated the Olympic torch relay last Wednesday as Kazakhstan's first torchbearer, will attend the Games' opening ceremony, he said.

Chen Yurong, a Central Asian studies professor with the China Institute of International Studies, said the agreements in areas other than natural resources will "greatly boost bilateral trade, help reduce the Kazakh economy's reliance on energy and minerals and make its economy more balanced".

(China Daily April 10, 2008)

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