Howard Dahl said despite their geographic distance, the Republic of Kazakhstan and North Dakota have a lot in common. Both boast plentiful natural resources, growing oil and gas development and a similar climate.
And if the new Honorary Consul of the Upper Midwest to Kazakhstan has his way, the country will become even more like his home state in the coming years as North Dakota gets more opportunities to trade in the Kazakh markets.
Dahl, a native of Gwinner, will get his new title Tuesday morning during the Big Iron International Visitors Program welcome ceremony at the Red River Valley Fairgrounds in West Fargo. Kazakhstan Ambassador to the U.S. Erlan Idrissov will be on hand to make the appointment.
Concord sold more than 500 air drills to the region before being acquired by Case Corp. in 1996. The Dahls then founded Amity Technology in Fargo, where Howard Dahl continues to serve as president and CEO.
He said he’s traveled to Kazakhstan and the other former Soviet countries 65 times over the past 20 years and has hosted hundreds of guests in Fargo while selling equipment and helping other companies establish trade relations.
Dahl said there’s already a good trade partnership. Many of the cattle now being shipped to Kazakhstan to rebuild the country’s cattle herd come from the Dakotas, Montana and Nebraska, and are flown out of Fargo’s Hector International Airport.
Dahl said that includes helping other companies from the region get involved in the former Soviet Union, as well as building up exchange programs between North Dakota State University and Kazakh research universities.