On July 5, 2018, Wang Yanzhi, President of Silk Road Fund, attended the opening ceremony of the Astana International Financial Center (AIFC) and delivered a keynote speech. Wang also witnessed the exciting moment when Mr. Nursultan Ábishuly Nazarbayev, the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan beat a gong and announced the official opening of AIFC.
Earlier this year, Silk Road Fund and AIFC signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Strategic Partnership. AIFC is a financial free zone established in Astana, capital of Kazakhstan, based on a presidential decree issued in May 2015. During the 2018 SCO Qingdao Summit, China and Kazakhstan signed a joint statement, which highlighted both countries’ willingness to support the launch of AIFC in January 2018, the establishment of strategic partnership between Silk Road Fund and AIFC, and Silk Road Fund to become a shareholder of Astana International Exchange (AIX).
Silk Road Fund’s strategic partnership with AIFC and its status as a shareholder of AIX will help align the Belt and Road Initiative with Nurly Zhol (Bright Path), Kazakhstan's new economic policy, and promote Kazakhstan's capital market development and financial reform. It signifies financial collaboration as the foundation of the China-Kazakhstan cooperation on production capacity, and embodies the mutual benefit and win-win principles advocated by the Belt and Road Initiative.