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Statement by H.E. Mrs Aurélia Bouchez,

Ambassador, Head of the Delegation of the European Union to the Republic of Kazakhstan

Mister Chairman, Ministers, Excellencies,

On behalf of the European Union, I would like to congratulate the CICA on the occasion of its jubilee. 20 years have elapsed since President Nazarbayev initiated the CICA.

Today the CICA's achievements clearly demonstrate the wisdom of his approach.  

Indeed, CICA's efforts to promote cooperative and comprehensive security in Asia deserve high appreciation.

The EU supports these efforts, as we believe that trust is a prerequisite for lasting peace and enduring security.  

Multilateral conference-building plays a key role in this regard.

Clearly, the CICA's goals bear relevance for many an objective of the EU in Asia.  

This is, in particular, the case when it comes to facilitating dialogue and cooperation between neighbouring countries. The EU is actively engaged in this field, notably in Central Asia, with the "EU Central Asian Strategy" and with the high-level dialogue between Ministers of Foreign Affaires of Central Asia, in the framework of yearly meetings chaired by the HRVP Lady Ashton.

The EU also highly values regional and UN-led efforts to prevent or mediate conflicts as well as the overall UN leadership on the issues we discuss today.

Let me conclude by thanking the host country, Kazakhstan, and the current Chairmanship, Turkey, for their kind invitation and by wishing full success to the Conference.