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EEU and multi-vector policy were key in 2014, says Foreign Minister

Posted on January 17, 2015 by KazCham

The Astana Times

At a press conference, Minister of Foreign Affairs Erlan Idrissov summarized the country’s foreign policy achievements for 2014 while stressing the importance of a multi-vector foreign policy.

Idrissov noted that President Nazarbayev made 8 foreign visits and received 16 heads of state, while Kazakhstan’s senior most officials  participated in over 59 events at the highest level and 70 bilateral visits.

The country adopted a new Concept of Foreign Policy until 2020 as per President Nazarbayev’s Jan. 29 decree, wherein the EEU was given top priority.

Kazakhstan also successfully negotiated an expanded Partnership and Cooperation Agreement with the EU, and furthered in its path to join the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

Ukraine featured strongly as a major political concern in Kazakhstan, and Astana continually expressed its support for a peaceful de-escalation of the armed conflict and mutual cooperation between countries as per internationally recognized agreements.

Kazakhstan has also been making a strong case for its candidacy as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council in 2017-2018, by focusing on basic necessities like energy, food, water security, as well as non-proliferation.

President Nazarbayev focused intensely on regional security in 2014. At the fourth summit of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA) on May 21 in Shanghai, President Nazarbayev introduced an initiative to transform CICA into an Organisation for Security and Development in Asia. He also led Kazakhstan’s joining of ASEM at the 10th ASEM (Asia-Europe Meeting) summit in Milan.

Nazarbayev held talks with President Barack Obama during the Nuclear Security Summit and emphasized strong relations with the U.S. Kazakhstan maintained strong relations with Russia, with Nazarbayev and Putin holding 10 meetings in 2014. Nazarbayev also made a state visit to China in May, where he signed 16 agreements for furthering bilateral cooperation.

Kazakhstan worked towards harmony in Central Asia by extending humanitarian and economic aid to Afghanistan for rebuilding efforts.

Idrissov also noted that “special attention was paid to attracting further foreign direct investment, promoting Kazakhstan’s export to foreign markets, developing transit-transport cooperation and elaborating on projects in the energy sector, as well as implementing preparations for EXPO 2017.”

A visa-free regime with 10 countries, the creation of Kazakhstan’s own regional aid agency KazAID, and the new Nurly Zhol economic policy were all remarkable achievements of 2014 as well, according to Idrissov.

 

 

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