ALMATY, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) -- Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said Chinese President Xi Jinping's upcoming first state visit to Kazakhstan bears very important political significance for both countries.
"In many ways, this (importance) is due to the fact that it takes place in a special period - for both China and Kazakhstan," Nazarbayev said in a recent joint interview with Chinese media.
Following the success of the 18th Congress of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the election of the fifth generation of leadership of the country, China had set a new strategic goal for its national development, Nazarbayev said.
Given the weighty role of China in the international arena, the sweeping changes in China would affect not only the lives of the Chinese people, but also influence the general direction of international politics, he told Chinese reporters.
The "Chinese Dream" will bring new opportunities for China's neighboring countries, the Eurasian region as well as the whole world, he said.
The Kazakh president said Kazakhstan was implementing its state development strategy towards 2050 and had set a goal of becoming one of the 30 most developed countries in the world.
The mutually beneficial partnership between Kazakhstan and China would make an important contribution to the sustainable development of both countries, he said.
Nazarbayev believed Xi's visit would generate new impetus for Kazakhstan-China cooperation and determine the substantive priorities of that cooperation.
Nazarbayev said deepening cooperation with China was one of Kazakhstan's foreign policy priorities.
Bilateral trade between Kazakhstan and China approached 25 billion U.S. dollars last year, and the two countries planned to increase it to 40 billion dollars by 2015, he said.
Meanwhile, the two countries not only planned to expand the scope of their cooperation, but also to enhance its quality, he said.
Currently, Kazakhstan-China cooperation mainly focused on the energy sector, but a shift to the non-energy sector would be the future direction, Nazarbayev said.
The two countries were working on a blueprint for their medium- and long-term economic and trade cooperation towards 2020, he said.
Nazarbayev stressed that relations between Kazakhstan and China were established on the basis of equality and dialogue and the fundamental principles of the friendly relations would remain unchanged for many years.
Nazarbayev said Kazakhstan and China enjoyed diversified and effective cooperation not only at bilateral level but also within international and regional frameworks, such as the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia.
With agreement on strategic principles for cooperation, the two countries now could cooperate on specific projects, Nazarbayev said.