TASHKENT: Participants in ‘The International Conference on Central and South Asia Regional Connectivity, Challenges and Opportunities’ pose for a group picture. – KUNA photos

TASHKENT: There remains huge potential for more cooperation between the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and the wider Asian region, Kuwait’s foreign minister told pan-regional talks in Uzbekistan on Friday. Highlighting Kuwait’s “storied relations” with the Central and South Asia region, Sheikh Dr Ahmad Al-Nasser Al-Sabah said his country has been a major contributor towards development there, citing key projects worth $4 billion in areas ranging from infrastructure to education.

Remarks of Sheikh Dr Ahmad Al-Nasser, who doubles as Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs, came at ‘The International Conference on Central and South Asia Regional Connectivity, Challenges and Opportunities’, held in Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan on July 15-16.

Kuwait’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Dr Ahmad Nasser Al-Mohammad Al-Sabah meets Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Abul Kalam Abdul Momen.

Improving cooperation between Gulf Arab states and Asian countries would yield remarkable “success” for both sides, the Kuwaiti top diplomat noted, pinpointing sectors such as trade and investment as of the most potential for growth. With COVID-induced challenges thrust upon the world, it would behoove both regions to work closer together to keep those hardships at bay, added the minister. Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev has called for the two-day talks as part of efforts to establish more trans-regional cooperation.

In the meantime, Uzbekistan’s President Mirziyoyev received Sheikh Dr Ahmad in Tashkent on the sidelines of the conference. Deep-seated bilateral ties and means to boost them in various fields, in addition to regional and international latest developments were discussed. The Kuwaiti foreign minister held similar talks with Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani in a separate on Friday..

Kuwait’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Dr Ahmad Nasser Al-Mohammad Al-Sabah meets his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi.

Meanwhile, Sheikh Dr Ahmad held separate meetings with Uzbek Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov, Tajik Foreign Minister Sirojiddin Muhriddin, Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Abul Kalam Abdul Momen and Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlut Cavisoglu. The Kuwaiti top diplomat tackled with his counterparts the deep-rooted bilateral ties and means to boost them in various fields, in addition to regional and international latest developments.

Furthermore, Sheikh Dr Ahmad also met with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on the sidelines of the conference. The discussions dealt with the Kuwaiti-Chinese bilateral relations, ways of strengthening and developing them in various fields, and latest developments on the regional and international arenas. – KUNA