Kazakhstan Chamber of Commerce in the USA


Archive for the ‘Kazakhstan President’

Hate-filled extremism from beyond our borders will not divide Kazakhstan, by Erlan Idrissov, Foreign Minister of Kazakhstan 0

Posted on June 28, 2016 by KazCham

Financial Times

Sir, No country, as we have seen again tragically over the past few days, is immune from violence fuelled by hate and extremism. The terrorist attacks that took place in Aktobe (“Kazakh leader needs to address real grievances”, editorial, June 13) brought this home to Kazakhstan earlier this month.

Extremist violence is extremely rare in Kazakhstan. We are proud that, from a population made up of people from many different backgrounds, we have built a peaceful and stable society that lives in harmony together. It is why these attacks have shocked our country. While the attackers were local, it is now very clear that they were motivated by hate-filled extremism from beyond our borders. It is why Kazakhstan has been urging the international community to step up its collective efforts to counter both the threat from violent extremism and the distorted ideology on which it feeds.

This must include a renewed focus on intelligence co-operation and education. We must increase as well our efforts to tackle global poverty, promote development and find solutions to ongoing conflicts around the world. If the attackers had hoped to divide our country or undermine our progress, they have failed.

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Kazakh Land Code Commission to Continue Work as Changes Spark Unauthorised Rallies 0

Posted on June 03, 2016 by KazCham

Astana Times

A second meeting of the special Land Reform Commission took place in Astana on May 21 in a continued effort to calm public sentiment over recent land code changes that have sparked sporadic rallies.

The changes, which involve agricultural lands, were put on hold by Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev on May 5 until next year and until they can be better explained to the public or until further amendments can be introduced better satisfying the national interests. However, some citizens concerned about the changes and apparently unaware of the ongoing work of a representative commission sought to organize rallies around the country on May 21. Those rallies involved the detentions of some citizens and journalists.

While more than 70 commission members from business, NGOs, academia, media, government and parliament were debating the land issue and building a national consensus on it, some planned rallies in different regions of the country.

The second meeting of the commission, set up earlier in May, focused on the whole range of issues related to the sale and lease of land. The commission plans to have several meetings in Astana, held every Saturday. Commission members are then to discuss the changes with public councils and public organizations around the country before a final decision will be submitted for the consideration of the Kazakh Parliament.

The government says the controversial land code changes were not intended to allow foreign ownership of the Kazakh land, but only to extend the current limit of renting agricultural land from 10 years to 25 years to help encourage investment and innovation.

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Kazakhstan is a country with a promising future – IMF Chief Christine Lagarde 0

Posted on June 01, 2016 by KazCham


Kazinform offers its readers an exclusive interview with IMF Chief Christine Lagarde taken ahead her trip to Kazakhstan, for the Astana Economic Forum 2016.

Welcome to Kazakhstan! Madame Lagarde, this is your first visit to Kazakhstan and Central Asia. What is the objective of your trip and what are your expectations from meeting with Kazakhstan’s officials?

It is indeed my first trip to Kazakhstan and to the region. It is a momentous time for Central Asia, with the 25th anniversary of independence, and it is also a challenging time. The prices of oil and other commodities have declined sharply; growth paces in key trading partners, such as Russia and China, has slowed; and global financial conditions have tightened.

These developments can be long-lasting, and that’s why the regional round table meeting that we are organizing together with the Kazakh authorities comes at the right time. We will be discussing how to address the economic challenges and put Kazakhstan and the region on the right track towards growth and prosperity. And this will have to involve national policies as well as regional cooperation.

What are your views on the perspectives of Kazakhstan’s economy?

Kazakhstan has achieved a lot since its independence. The past 15 years in particular have been a time of growing prosperity and rising living standards, mostly as a result of increased production and high prices of commodities. Kazakhstan wisely saved some of the earnings from this period, placing them in a national fund. This helped the country navigate effectively through the aftermath of the 2008-09 global financial crisis.

Now the challenges are different. Similar to other oil exporters the decline in oil prices has had a major impact on Kazakhstan. The country is projected to grow by only 0.1 percent this year, much lower than the average growth rate of 7½ percent during the last 15 years, which was quite impressive. And we don’t expect growth to pick up very quickly over the next few years, so this is really a big change.

Now, it was important that the authorities allowed the tenge to float and strengthened the monetary and exchange rate policy framework, all measures that we think were appropriate. We think the fiscal framework can also be improved to bring more clarity and sustainability. We are suggesting to consolidate the accounts of the state budget, the local government budgets, as well as the so-called “extra-budgetary” funds into one presentation. This will help give a clear position of the authorities’ policy objectives and operations.

Read full article at Forum-Astana

The Speech by Christine Lagarde at AEF is available at International Monetary Fund.

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Kazakhstan Pledges Shift to 50 Percent Renewable Energy by 2050 0

Posted on May 25, 2016 by KazCham


The Paris Climate Accord has many countries excited about actually reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Even nations with rich fossil fuel reserves are carrying the banner of green energy, a powerful sign that the shifting climate landscape is radically altering how countries are calculating their interests.

Fossil fuel production constitutes 17 percent of Kazakhstan’s GDP, yet the Foreign Minister Erlan Idrissov just announced the country is planning to shift to 50 percent renewable energy by 2050. For some perspective, in 2015, the United States generated just 13 percent of its energy from green sources, like wind, solar, and hyrdo.

In an address to the United Nations General Assembly, Idrissov promised that Kazakhstan would sign the Paris Climate deal and make the necessary changes to fulfill its obligations.

“Although our country is rightly known for its abundance of conventional energy resources, we are absolutely committed to developing green economy,” Idrissov said. “We have set ourselves ambitious goals, for example, to generate 50 percent of our electricity from non-fossil fuel sources by 2050.”

That famous Kazakhstan snark is perfectly appropriate in this instance. It is pretty incredible how some nations are bearing the brunt of shifting to green energy, while others seem to be coasting on their backs. The United States produces the second most emissions in the world, behind only China, and the third most emissions per capita, behind only Saudi Arabia and Australia respectively. And we could be doing way more to shift to renewables, we’re just not doing it.

In a recent Twitter chat, Bill Nye talked about how quickly the United States could convert its entire economy to 100 percent renewable energy, and the answer is far less daunting than one would imagine.

“We could certainly do almost all of it, here in the United States, by 2050,” Nye said, adding ominously: “If we wanted to.”

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Kazakhstan: from the center of the nuclear threat to a center for security and safety 0

Posted on May 23, 2016 by KazCham

EU Today

In the golden years of detente that followed the breakup of the USSR and the end of the Cold War, humanity aspired towards the total denuclearisation of the planet. But events were to take a different turn, and today we can say with regret that the drive towards disarmament is largely over, due to the actions of both NATO and Russia.

Now we have sufficient nuclear weapons to destroy the entire planet, several times over. A single warhead is capable of destroying a million-strong city in a matter of moments – Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) – to use Cold War parlance.

The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons is no longer fulfilling its purpose.

Nuclear weapons, along with the technology and expertise required to produce them, have spread all over the world, largely due to double standards of the main powers. It may be just a matter of time before they fall into the hands of terrorists, a real fear that is understood by all. This is why the Nuclear Security Summit in Washington last month gathered leaders of nearly fifty countries of the world.

First to take the floor and address the Summit was President Nursultan Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan.

During the last 25 years, Astana has taken a lead in this issue, and has demonstrated real commitment towards disarmament, and the restoration of the non-proliferation process. The country has, historically, held nuclear weapons. Indeed, following the collapse of the Soviet Union, Kazakhstan inherited the fourth-largest nuclear arsenal in the world.

Although the country possessed the experts, and all the necessary infrastructure for the realisation of a nuclear weapons program, Kazakhstan voluntarily refused to do so.

Read full article at EU Today

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Kazakh Secretary State Shares Country’s Gender-Sensitive Policies with UN Commission on Women 0

Posted on March 30, 2016 by KazCham

Astana Times

Kazakhstan’s Secretary of State Gulshara Abdykalikova told the March 14-15 60th session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women that her country’s women-oriented and gender-sensitive policies enable women to succeed at the national level.

Abdykalikova said during the session, dedicated to “Women’s empowerment and its link to sustainable development,” that President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev pays great attention to the political leadership of women, their contribution to the economic growth and prevention of gender violence.

Kazakhstan, as a member of the UN, advocates for gender equality and empowerment of women throughout almost all of the issues and processes on the agenda of the organisation. Kazakhstan has been a member of the Commission on the Status of Women several times and is a member until 2018.

Abdykalikova addressed the commission in her capacity as Chairperson of the National Commission for Women, Family and Demographic Policy under the President, focusing on the structural causes of gender inequality and discrimination, putting forward gender-responsive state policies and programmes. In light of the newly adopted 2030 development agenda, Abdykalikova shared the goals of the country’s gender-sensitive policies.

The Kazakh delegation also met with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and Under-Secretary-Generals, Executive Director of the UN Women Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka and Administrator of the UN Development Programme Helen Clark. The delegation also met with Executive Secretary of Inter-American Commission on the Status of Women Ambassador Carmen Moreno, as well as Ban Soon-taek, spouse of Ban Ki-moon, who is an advocate for the protection of women’s rights and their empowerment. The sides expressed a desire to expand cooperation.

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Posted on March 29, 2016 by KazCham

Six Kazakh Parties Meet in Electoral Debate Broadcast Nationwide

Astana Times

Representatives of the six parties running for seats in Kazakhstan’s lower chamber of Parliament took part in an electoral debate March 16 shown on one of the country’s national TV channels.

Led by two hosts, the debates had three rounds. During the first round, each speaker had two minutes to share his party’s view on the theme “the new reality of the world economy: problems and perspectives.”

In terms of the new reality, it is necessary to support employment, continue the quality transformation of the economy and lower its dependence on the external factors, noted Nur Otan Party First Deputy Chairman Askar Myrzakhmetov.

During his speech, Ak Zhol (Bright Path) Democratic Party Chairman Azat Peruashev noted the importance for Kazakhstan not to rely on natural resources and raw materials, but to make its own products. The pro-business party’s leader indicated the necessity to support domestic producers.

Auyl People’s Democratic Patriotic Party Chairman Ali Bektayev talked about the country’s agricultural sector and the significance of developing export potential.

Vladislav Kosarev, honorary secretary the Communist People’s Party of Kazakhstan (CPPK), said the economy should be restored on the principles of “social justice, truth and humanity.”

Nationwide Social Democratic Party (NSDP) representative Zauresh Battalova insisted Kazakhstan is in the midst of a crisis due to internal rather than external factors. She called for ensuring a decent standard of living and the total eradication of poverty.

Birlik (Unity) Party member Roza Kuanyshbayeva talked about the country’s environmental problems and deficit of water resources. Her speech was based on implementing the principles of a green economy, stressing the rational use of natural resources and greening of industrial production.

The first round was completed with a series of questions posed by the representatives to one another. Each could ask only one opponent and answer only one query. They had 20 seconds to ask and one minute to answer. The questions included the electoral programmes, measures to overcome world crises, steps to support the country’s people and the green economy.

The second round was dedicated to the topic “infrastructure, transport, logistics and modernisation in modern conditions.” Party representatives shared their views on the topic and answered the hosts’ questions about the innovative solutions the parties proposed in order to develop the infrastructure.

During the third round, the participants had the opportunity to once again appeal to voters and reiterate the main reasons why they should cast ballots for their particular party. Most asked people to follow their hearts and make the decision they feel is right.

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Treaty between the United States of America and the Republic of Kazakhstan on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters 0

Posted on March 28, 2016 by KazCham

White House


With a view to receiving the advice and consent of the Senate to ratification, I transmit herewith the Treaty between the United States of America and the Republic of Kazakhstan on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters, signed at Washington on February 20, 2015.  I also transmit, for the information of the Senate, the report of the Department of State with respect to the Treaty.

The Treaty is one of a series of modern mutual legal assistance treaties negotiated by the United States to more effectively counter criminal activities.  The Treaty should enhance our ability to investigate and prosecute a wide variety of crimes.

The Treaty provides for a broad range of cooperation in criminal matters.  Under the Treaty, the Parties agree to assist each other by, among other things:  producing evidence (such as testimony, documents, or items) obtained voluntarily or, where necessary, by compulsion; arranging for persons, including persons in custody, to travel to another country to provide evidence; serving documents; executing searches and seizures; locating and identifying persons or items; and freezing and forfeiting assets or property that may be the proceeds or instrumentalities of crime.

I recommend that the Senate give early and favorable consideration to the Treaty, and give its advice and consent to ratification.


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Women Run About 700,000 Kazakh Enterprises 0

Posted on March 20, 2016 by KazCham

Astana times

Atameken Council of Business Women of Kazakhstan Chairperson Lyazzat Ramazanova recently spoke about women’s entrepreneurship in the nation, as well as the possible financing of women’s business projects through various financial institutions, during a Central Communication Service press conference.

“There are several financial channels for development of female entrepreneurship, including the EBRD (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development), the Asian Development Bank and the Damu Fund. To date, the total sum forwarded to support business women in the country is 1.5 billion tenge (US$4.4 million),” she said.

Ramazanova added the majority of business women choose small and medium-sized companies.

“According to official statistics, the population of Kazakhstan today is composed of over 17 million people and more than a half of them (52 percent) are women. Four million women have reached working age and in the previous year, 1,656,493 citizens were registered as small and medium-sized entrepreneurs. Women run 697,355 enterprises and, in general, there are 1.44 million women engaged in business. Therefore, we must help women to establish and develop their businesses,” she said.

The council was founded in July and the positive results of its work were noted.

“The active involvement of women in the sphere of small and medium-sized businesses is needed to improve the economic status of women and to reduce the female unemployment rate, as well as to create a stable middle class society,” said the speaker.

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Russia and Kazakhstan to sign nuclear power agreement this year 0

Posted on March 19, 2016 by KazCham

Colibri Law Firm BI@colibrilaw.com

Russia and Kazakhstan are preparing to sign an intergovernmental agreement on research and development cooperation in the nuclear energy sector. Vyacheslav Pershukov, the Russian state nuclear corporation’s head of design and innovation, led a delegation to Kazakhstan last week to discuss potential joint projects in the sector.

The two sides have also agreed to include in the agreement the possibility of Kazakhstan’s participation in the international research centre for the MBIR complex, which is under construction in Dimitrovgrad, Russia. MBIR is the Russian acronym for multipurpose sodium-cooled fast neutron research reactor.

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