October 5, 2008

USA’s Kazakh Energy Policy Not to Harm Other States’ Interests – Rice

Excerpt from report by privately-owned Interfax-Kazakhstan news agency

Astana, 5 October: The USA's policy in relations with Kazakhstan in the energy of sphere does not involve infringing others' interests, including the neighbours of this country, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has said.

"Economic and political relations with Kazakhstan are based on the principles of tolerance. And one should draw the conclusion from this meeting (with Kazakh Foreign Minister Marat Tazhin - Interfax- Kazakhstan) that we (USA) do not compete with other countries for Kazakhstan's love (in the energy sphere). Kazakhstan has excellent relations with its neighbours, and this is the way how it should be," Condoleezza Rice said. She was answering a relevant question from journalists at a press briefing in Astana today following talks with the Kazakh foreign minister.

She said that Kazakhstan "is building good business relations with American companies". "These relations are based on mutual respect, transparancy and desire to see a more prosperous and open region - Central Asia," the US secretary of state said.

For his part, in reply to the same question, Marat Tazhin said that Kazakh-American relations in the energy sphere "are based on the agreements signed". "These are very transparent relations in the energy sphere. And they will develop in line with the plan drawn up earlier," Tazhin said.

[Passage omitted: Condoleezza Rice arrived in Kazakhstan today on a one-day visit]

Originally published by Interfax-Kazakhstan news agency, Almaty, in Russian 0831 5 Oct 08.

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