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Kazakh-Chinese Bilateral Trade Reached $41 Billion in 2023

There are significant discrepancies in trade turnover statistics registered by Kazakhstan and China, with China reporting higher figures.Atameken, the National Chamber of Entrepreneurs (NCE) of Kazakhstan, has signed a memorandum of cooperation with China's Committee for the Promotion of International Trade. The two sides agreed to exchange information that creates "a basis for strengthening compliance with government laws and regulations on both sides."

The signing ceremony occurred on the sidelines of a 'China-Kazakhstan Trade and Economic Forum, held in the Kazakh capital Astana. An NCE statement said the organization has developed an "interactive investment map" to streamline the ability of Kazakh entrepreneurs to make connections with their Chinese counterparts.

"The forum is a platform where the business communities of Kazakhstan and China find new ways to create a favorable environment for entrepreneurship, closer trade relations and the implementation of investment projects," the NCE statement said.

Amid efforts to bolster bilateral commerce, Eldos Saudabayev, head of the Customs Control Department of the State Revenue Committee, acknowledged some challenges in tracking trade. Saudabeyev pointed to significant differences in trade turnover statistics registered by Kazakhstan and China. Kazakhstan's data tends to show significantly lower figures than those published by Beijing. "As for foreign trade statistics, we had big complaints from China," Saudabayev told journalists.

The discrepancies in turnover value can by no means be attributed to rounding error. For example, China was Kazakhstan's largest trade partner in 2023, with bilateral trade turnover reaching $41 billion, a 32 percent increase over the previous year's total, according to Chinese figures. Kazakhstan, meanwhile, reported total bilateral trade in 2023 as totaling $31.5 billion.

It's worth noting that the NCE, in its statement about the China-Kazakstan forum, cited the Chinese trade turnover totals.


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