COMRADE NURSULTAN (Il compagno Nursultan)

The Kazakh leader has negotiated to his colleague Giorgio Napolitano. The Presidents have discussed a wide range of issues. In particular, they have talked about the energy security of Europe and the special role of our republic in this issue. In addition, the heads of states have identified key directions of bilateral cooperation both in economic and political spheres. Italy is the third largest trading partner of Kazakhstan and the principal in the European Union. The Presidents have reported they are to sign an agreement on strategic partnership between Kazakhstan and Italy. This is a landmark event in the history of bilateral relations.

Giorgio Napolitano, President of the Italian Republic:
- Kazakhstan is a key state in Central Asia. Your republic is of exceptional importance for Europe, especially in matters of energy security. You will lead the OSCE the next year and it is a very important factor and a new stage in the development and strengthening of OSCE. I think that the status of the OSCE will rise from now on. I completely support the initiative of Nursultan Nazarbayev to convene, the OSCE heads of states for the big summit the next year. This is an excellent idea, because Kazakhstan is an example for the whole world. You have renounced nuclear weapons and you managed to create a tolerant society. It is very important in our time.

Nursultan Nazarbayev, President of the Republic of Kazakhstan:
- The Italian state is a major economic partner in the EU. One third of our trade turnover with Europe accounted for Italy. This is more than 14 billion dollars. Over the years, investments of Italian companies amounted to $4.5 billions, but the Kazakh companies have invested $1,5 billion.


Eni SpA (E, ENI.MI) Thursday said it signed a cooperation deal with KazMunaiGas for activities in Kazakhstan, as Italy's biggest energy company by revenue aims to boost its presence in the hydrocarbon-rich Caspian country.

The two companies signed a deal to jointly study the Isatay and Shagala exploration areas in the Caspian Sea, as well as industrial activities in Kazakhstan including a natural-gas sweetening plant, a gas-turbine power plant and the upgrading of the Pavlodar refinery.

Final investment decisions on these projects are expected within two years after the completion of detailed studies, Eni said.

The cooperation accord was signed in Rome in the presence of Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev.

Eni is present in Kazakhstan with the large Kashagan oil field, which has been hit by delays and cost overruns. The company is also a cooperator in the Karachaganak field.