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REVIEW: 25 years of Kazakhstan's independence

3 Июля 2016 00:00 9598

ASTANA. KAZINFORM  This year Kazakhstan is celebrating its 25th anniversary as an independent nation. Over the years, Kazakhstan has demonstrated its commitment to multilateralism, global peace-building, security and development, as well as its efficiency as an impartial honest broker working for the common benefit. At the initiative of its founding President, Nursultan Nazarbayev, the country has launched meaningful international processes, including the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA) and the triennial Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions. It has also chaired key organisations such as the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), and has been busy promoting valuable global and regional initiatives such as the establishment of a world free from nuclear weapons and the Eurasian Economic Union.In just over two decades, Kazakhstan has managed to become an economic and geopolitical success story.

The National Academic Library in Astana became the first to mark the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan's Independence with an exposition "Kazakhstan in New Global Reality: Growth, Reforms, Development."The exposition consists of four sections which include books and electronic resources from the Library's fund.The first section entitled "25th Anniversary of Kazakhstan's Independence" provides in-depth information about the history of formation of independent Kazakhstan and development of its statehood. The second section "The Land of the Great Steppe - Eternal Country" reveals the national and patriotic idea of President Nursultan Nazarbayev "Mangilik El - Eternal Country". This section provides also literature about the activities of the People's Assembly of Kazakhstan. The third section familiarizes the visitors with the activity of the First President of Kazakhstan. Called "The Leader's Way is the Country's Way", it displays the books by the President and about the President. The fourth section is devoted to the EXPO-2017 and provides books about the history of Astana as well as information about the oncoming EXPO-2017 exhibition.More than 400 books are displayed at the exposition which will be open for visitors throughout the year. According to organizers of the event, the exposition is a part of cultural and historical activities of the National Academic Library dedicated to celebration of the 25th jubilee of the country's independence.

One more exhibition dated to the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence "Founder of the state: 25 years of making" opened at a museum in Pavlodar. The exposition consists of archive materials about the development of Pavlodar region over the past 25 years," Gulnar Nurakhmetova, director of the museum, said."It is mainly dedicated to the years of Kazakhstan's independence, its core values and principles - "One country, one fate, one leader"," she added. "Of course, the exhibition focuses on the leader and founder of the state - Nursultan Nazarbayev. His works, speeches, books and photos depicting his meetings with workers, students and residents of Pavlodar region are on display at the museum," Ms Nurakhmetova concluded.

The extended meeting of the board of the  Ministry of Foreign Affairs, chaired by President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev, was an opportunity to take stock of the Foreign Ministry's work over 25 years of independence, and to form the basis for further activities on the protection and promotion of Kazakhstan's national interests in the international arena. Obviously, recent economic developments in the world demand improved methods and an extension of the toolbox of "economic diplomacy." Currently, the key direction of the Foreign Service's activity is aimed at attracting foreign investment and technologies. This is part of the implementation of industrial and innovative projects, the Nurly Zhol programme and the Kazakhstan 2050 Strategy, as well as the promotion of Kazakh exports in foreign markets. In this regard, the main topic of the meeting was "Economisation of foreign policy of the Republic of Kazakhstan. "Plans for the country's socio-economic development and modernisation, announced by the President, are priority tasks for us in terms of building up and strengthening "economic diplomacy." The work of our foreign missions is improving. They have so far been charged with the facilitation and goal orientation of activities in host countries depending on economic, investment and technological potential, as well as the interests, needs and priorities of Kazakhstan's economic development.  would like to emphasise that all basic institutions and conditions needed to attract investments to the country are in place. The legal framework necessary to undertake large-scale works on the attraction of investments has been established. Favourable investment in our business environment has been acknowledged by experts and foreign business partners. However, it is vital to make adjustments to improve the inter-institutional coordination in Kazakhstan and the follow-up process of agreements, particularly at the highest level. With this in mind we have worked with the economic ministries of the Government to create a concrete cooperation mechanism on the attraction of foreign investments to the priority areas of the Kazakh economy. In looking at Kazakhstan's trade and investment, we note that 453 events were carried out abroad and 642 visits were made to the country by representatives from the business and economic community in 2015.With the assistance of the MFA, large bilateral business forums with leading representatives from the USA, the United Kingdom, France, Austria, Germany, Hungary, India, Italy, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey, Croatia, Japan and other business communities were carried out.As a result, about 260 bilateral business documents to the tune of 23.8 trillion tenge ($73.4 billion) were signed last year with direct assistance from the Foreign Ministry. Our diplomats pay particular attention to the implementation of agreements with foreign partners, reached within the visits of the head of state to China, the USA, the United Kingdom, France and Italy in 2015, during which more than 80 bilateral agreements worth 12 trillion tenge ($37.3 bln.) were signed. I would like to emphasise the fact that heads of some of the biggest transnational corporations have acknowledged the outstanding role of our President in ensuring Kazakhstan is an investment-attractive country, as well as his commitment to making effective managerial decisions in a challenging environment. For this reason, major foreign companies continue to operate in our country, and even in this difficult period they are considering new investment proposals.The "pilot project" of a visa-free regime (up to 15 days) for citizens of politically and economically stable countries was extended until December 31, 2017 and expanded to 20 countries. Foreign investors welcomed visa preferences, which provided opportunities for short-term business visits to Kazakhstan aimed at making timely solutions on the investment projects issues.  We have made great progress in preparing for Astana's EXPO 2017. Currently, more than 70 countries and 13 international organizations have officially confirmed their participation. Participation agreements have been signed with 26 countries, and 47 countries and international organizations have appointed their EXPO commissioners. Work continues to be carried out on this event. The upcoming Second Meeting of international participants of the exhibition, to be held in Astana on February 24-25 and to be attended by more than 200 representatives from participating countries, is an opportunity to evaluate our preparation and harmonize joint actions of the MFA and JSC "NC" Astana EXPO 2017" before the exhibition. In promoting domestic products for export, the MFA pays special attention to the development of transit and transport potential, as well as marketing Kazakhstan as a convenient international logistics hub. With the KTZ, we organised an opportunity for diplomatic corps to visit the SEZ "Khorgos - Eastern Gate" and the International Centre for Boundary Cooperation. During this visit, the new transport and logistics hub bordering China and detailed information about the conditions of its operation and business partnership with foreign businesses and investors were presented. As for the OECD, a milestone event was the signing of the Country Programme of Cooperation with Kazakhstan for 2015-2016 in Davos on January 22, 2015. It's important to note that the only other countries to sign this Programme were Thailand, Peru and Morocco. Against the background of crisis in neighbouring countries and their falling ratings, the leadership of the OECD commends the economic reforms of Kazakhstan.The 2016 Doing Business report, published October 2015, ranked Kazakhstan 41st among 189 countries, Kazakhstan's strongest result yet. Provisional results of the Ministry's activities show that work in foreign policy and foreign economic directions was effective, and we will continue these efforts. To do so, we have necessary human capacity.Since independence, the MFA has formed a well-established professional staff with a good command of foreign languages, with knowledge of the peculiarities of specific regions and countries, and with rich experience of diplomatic work.The MFA's central administrative office, and foreign missions, currently employ 85 doctors and candidates of sciences, 198 masters graduates, 55 graduates of the Bolashak programme, and 376 officers with two and more higher educational qualifications.. More than 70 percent of employees at the MFA have a good command of two and more foreign languages, including rare languages.A major HR policy in the MFA is to improve training, retraining and professional development systems for officers of the diplomatic service.A number of our foreign missions have successfully implemented the practice of joint work of not only diplomats, but also representatives from the Ministry for Investments and Development, State Revenue Committee of the Ministry of Finance, etc. Partnerships between the MFA and other concerned agencies of Kazakhstan are aimed at enhancing tools and channels for attracting foreign investment to our country.The MFA will take all efforts to successfully accomplish new tasks set by the President, effectively implement foreign policy, and ultimately safeguard the priorities of the leadership's economic policy.

The president's press service  announced a photocompetition "Independence through the eyes of Kazakhstanis" dated to the 25 years of Kazakhstan's independence.Amateur and professional photographers are welcome to submit their photos taken during the period of Kazakhstan's independence. Winner will take home KZT 1 million prize. Runners-up will get a photo camera or a tablet, the Akorda's press service announced via its Facebook page.Press secretary of the President Dauren Abayev, well-known Kazakhstani photographer Valeriy Korenchuk, producer Bayan Yessentayeva, head of "Miloserdiye" (Mercy) charity fund Aruzhan Sain, photographers Elmar Akhmetov and Damir Otegen will be on the jury panel. The photo competition will run from February 18 till April 18. Winners will be announced on April 29, 2016.

Later, the press service of Akorda published   first photos of a photo competition themed 'Independence as viewed by Kazakhstanis'.It bears to remind that the President's press service announced on February 18 of the current year. Amateurs and professional photographers took part in the competition. Winner of the contest will receive KZT 1 million, second prize winner - a camera and a third prize winner - a tablet.Chairman of the board of the jury is the press secretary of the President Dauren Abayev. Members of the jury are: one of the most well-known and experienced photographers of Kazakhstan Valeriy Korenchuk, producer Bayan Yessentayeva, director of "Charity" fund Aruzhan Sain, photographers Elmar Akhmetov and Damir Otegen.

To celebrate the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence schoolchildren in Shymkent made a huge globe.The 3.5-m tall globe was made by the schoolchildren from school №90. It took them a month to finish the globe made of plasterboard.The schoolchildren admitted that the hardest part was actually to make the map. They still haven't found the right-sized map. Deputy principal of the school Guisen Gassanov says that now Geography lessons are delivered not in a classroom but around the giant globe that eventually was installed in a hall. "It makes the lessons so much more interesting," he explained.

The National Commission for Women's Affairs and Demographic Policy under the President of Kazakhstan has announced the start of 25 good deeds campaign dated to the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence."Today the National Commission for Women's Affairs and Demographic Policy gives a green light to a wonderful campaign - 25 good deeds. Dated to the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence, the campaign will be held in all regions of the country," Raushan Sarsembayeva, President of the Kazakhstan Businesswomen Association, said at a press conference at the Central Communications Service. According to her, Kazakhstani women will do a lot of charity-related things within the framework of the campaign."Those include surgeries for kids from low-income families, discussions on enhancing the role of fathers in families and Women say 'no' to corruption campaign," she added.

Uralsk city is a pearl of the country, President N. Nazarbayev told at the forum of the People's Assembly of Kazakhstan called "Our power is in unity!" and dedicated to the 25th anniversary of independence of the country."West Kazakhstan region has always been playing an important role in our economy. I see that the anti-crisis work is going well here like everywhere else in the country. Under the unstable condition of in world markets West Kazakhstan region produces 24 out of 33 types of socially important products. 32 projects have been implemented within the first stage of the Industrialization Program, which allowed to create two thousand jobs. Another 40 projects will be implemented in the region within the Nurly Zhol Program. They will allow to create over two thousand jobs more for the people of the region," The Head of State said.The President also stressed that the embracement of children with pre-school education reached 98% in the region. The housing is being built, and almost all the locations of the region are supplied with gas.

Authorities of Astana city are planning to earmark 100 million tenge on the construction of a monument to the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence this year.Deputy akim (mayor) of the Kazakh capital Andrey Lukin announced the news at a session of the maslikhat of the 5th convocation in Astana. He also briefed participants of the session on other projects that are to be developed at the expense of the city budget. For instance, a round square next to the Triumphal arch will be redeveloped.Additionally, participants of the session approved amendments to the local budget.

Since attaining independence, Kazakhstan has made a huge step forward in terms of democracy, believes Austrian observer Walter Schwimmer."Development of democracy, democratic processes and observance of human rights in Kazakhstan are of paramount importance. I see that Kazakhstan has made a huge step forward in terms of democracy since gaining independence. And I truly hope that the [snap parliamentary] elections will contribute to further democratic development of Kazakhstan," Mr. Schwimmer said while answering journalists' questions. "I've been to a number of polling stations. And I would like to praise good organization of the election process. As an international observer I was pleasantly surprised by the number of young voters," he added.

According to independent observer from Estonia Deniss Boroditš, stability and development became the main reasons for Kazakhstanis' participation in the elections. He said it today at a briefing in Almaty."This is the second time I came to Kazakhstan for observing the elections. To my mind, people were more active at the last [presidential - editor] elections, that is natural. When the voters were asked about the reasons of coming to elections, they noted such factors as stability and further economic development," Deniss Boroditš noted.According to him, no violations of law were observed at 10 voting stations which he visited."The voters were aware of the program of the party and candidates [to maslikhats - editor] for which they voted," he concluded.

A concert of Ensemble of Folk Instruments of the Kazakh National University of Arts dedicated to the celebration of the 25th anniversary of Independence of the Republic of Kazakhstan and the celebration of Nauryz took place in Belgrade with the assistance of the Kazakh Embassy on April 1, 2016.Opening the concert, a member of the Serb-Kazakh parliamentary group of friendship Dragomir Karich noted the importance of holding such events which give opportunity to Belgrade residents to get acquainted with the national musical art, works of the great Kazakh composers and poets, Kazinform has learnt from the press service of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.The works of Abay, Kurmangazy, Ykylas Dukenuly, Birzhan Kozhagululy, Dayrabay Nurgozhauly, Sarah Tastanbekkyzy, Dina Nurpeisova, Latif Hamidi, Nurgisa Tlendiev and foreign classics were performed.The performance of the ensemble awakened great interest of Serbian audience to Kazakhstan as well as to the history, culture and identity of the Kazakh nation.

Secretary of State Gulshara Abdykalikova has chaired the first session of the state commission on holding of the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence in Astana."Throughout the years of independence we've made an incredible breakthrough in terms of historical development. Kazakhstan is our greatest pride," Secretary Abdykalikova said in her opening remarks.At the session she especially stressed that celebration of the 25th anniversary of independence will further solidify statehood, unity and bring together all people of Kazakhstan.The Kazakh Secretary of State drew attention to the fact that celebrations of that historical milestone will be based on such values as freedom, unity, stability, creation and prosperity.Participants discussed how government bodies, public and mass media will cooperate to hold and celebrate the events dedicated to the 25th anniversary.The state commission on holding of the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence was established in accordance with the presidential decree as of March 28, 2016.

The history of Kazakhstan's independence is a chronicle of accord and stability, peace and unbreakable unity. Head of State Nursultan Nazarbayev has said at the XXIV session of the People's Assembly of Kazakhstan in Astana."Our meeting is held in the year of 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence. The history our independence is a chronicle of accord and stability, peace and unbreakable unity. "Both wealth and happiness are based on unity", a proverb says. The People's Assembly of Kazakhstan greatly contributes to our country's international weight, its formation as a prospering state. The Assembly is a pledge of our harmony. I express my sincere gratitude to the representatives of various ethnic groups fruitfully working in all spheres of our life," N.Nazarbayev said.The President noted that this session of the Assembly gives a start to a nationwide event dedicated to the 25th anniversary of the country's independence. The Assembly is one of the greatest domains of independence. It is symbolic that the institute was established by the President in 1992, on the eve of the first jubilee of independence. According to the Head of State, Kazakhstan could preserve friendship - the main value of all generations of Kazakhstanis. The nation chose its own unique way towards equality, unity and accord. Kazakhstan People's Assembly is a product of independence, which has always been at its best despite any challenges. Its history reflects all the stages and certain outcomes of nation's development. More than 1500 people are taking part in the work of the session. Among them are the members and veterans of the Assembly representing all the regions of the country, chairpersons of the republican and regional ethno-cultural associations, deputies of the Parliament, heads of central executive authorities, political parties, religious associations, NGOs, rectors of universities, heads of diplomatic missions, representatives of research and creative intelligentsia and mass media.

People's Assembly of Kazakhstan appointed Friendship Ambassadors, such a proposal was made at the 24th session of the People's Assembly of Kazakhstan titled "Independence. Accord. Nation of common future" by president of the International Federation of Street Workout Denis Minin. His proposal was immediately approved by the Head of State Nursultan Nazarbayev. Denis Minin said that Kazakhstan building hundreds of sports facilities across the country. The world champion in street workout, Kazakh athlete Diaz Bidjiyev, reported that currently 500 thousand Kazakhstanis are fond of street workout.

Speaking at the celebration of the People's Unity Day in Almaty's square "Astana" the Head of State has named the main achievement of the country for 25 years of Independence.He said that for 25 years of independence lifespan of Kazakhstani people has grown from 64 to 72 years. Mr. President said that it is the main achievement of our country. Nursultan Nazarbayev.In conclusion, the President wished Kazakhstanis good health, success and well-being.

People of Kazakhstan celebrated the Fatherland Defender's Day. Festivities are held countrywide within the framework of the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence."The Fatherland Defender's Day is a glorious anniversary of the birth of Kazakhstan's Armed Forces. Creation of the national army is one of the most important pages in the biography of sovereign Kazakhstan. We've come a long way from forming the first military units to current modernly-equipped system of national defense and security," Head of State and Supreme Commander-in-Chief Nursultan Nazarbayev said at the festive concert dedicated to celebration of the holiday at the Kazakhstan Concert Hall on May 6.The Head of State stressed that Kazakhstan makes every effort to ensure that the defense potential of the country is at the highest level. "Despite the difficulties, we earmark money for this sphere on a regular basis. In the nearest future we will renew 70 percent of our military fleet and army equipment. Some sectors will be renewed for 100%," Nursultan Nazarbayev added.President Nazarbayev also noted that our country constantly develops military and technical cooperation with foreign countries and that our servicemen hone their skills in joint exercises with CSTO and SCO member countries as well as in partnership with NATO.The Kazakhstani army was formed on May 7, 1992 based on the Decree of President Nursultan Nazarbayev.According to international experts, the Armed Forces of Kazakhstan are among top 3 armies in the post-Soviet territory and the best in the Central Asian region

In the year of the 25th anniversary of our independence, Kazakhstanis must demonstrate to the world their ability to solve the problems in a constructive dialogue. Head of State Nursultan Nazarbayev said it at the meeting in Akorda devoted to discussion of the country's development in Jan-Apr 2016, Akorda press service reports via Twitter."This year we will mark the 25th anniversary of independence. We must demonstrate to the world our ability to solve the problems in a constructive dialogue," said the President."There are so many countries in the world which lost their wealth and prosperity because of lack of unity. We must not repeat their mistakes,"N. Nazarbayev stressed.

The relations between the UN and Kazakhstan go to a higher level every year, Secretary of State Gulshara Abdykalikova told at the meeting with Director of UNDP's Regional Bureau for Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States Cihan Sultanoglu."The relations between the UN and Kazakhstan go to a higher level every year. We really appreciate the visit of Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moonthat he paid to Astana in 2015. We are grateful to the UN and its bodies for supporting the Astana Economic Forum and for participating in the event, which makes it even more significant," G. Abdykalikova said.She also reminded that the Head of State took part in the 70th session of the UN General Assembly last year and put forward a number of proposals. The plan of strategic initiatives for 2045 was among them. Recently, President of Kazakhstan N. Nazarbayev also put forward the Manifesto "The World. The 21st century", which was adopted by the UN General Assembly as an official document. The plan of strategic initiatives and the Manifesto are interrelated, they are aimed at eradication of conflict situations and building of peace around the world.During the meeting the interlocutors discussed the prospects of cooperation between Kazakhstan and the UNDP within the implementation of the partnership program for 2020. G. Abdykalikova also expressed interest of Kazakhstan in extending partnership with the UNDP in all spheres within the framework of jointly financed projects on future promotion of the regional hub for civil services in Astana.

Kazakhstan is celebrating its 25th anniversary as an independent nation. Over the years, Kazakhstan has demonstrated its commitment to multilateralism, global peace-building, security and development, as well as its efficiency as an impartial honest broker working for the common benefit. At the initiative of its founding President, Nursultan Nazarbayev, the country has launched meaningful international processes, including the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA) and the triennial Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions. It has also chaired key organisations such as the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), and has been busy promoting valuable global and regional initiatives such as the establishment of a world free from nuclear weapons and the Eurasian Economic Union.In just over two decades, Kazakhstan has managed to become an economic and geopolitical success story. The country has also illustrated its willingness to be a trustworthy partner in a region that faces many challenges.1. Kazakhstan's contribution to global peace and securityKazakhstan's contribution to nuclear security• Kazakhstan is a world leader in the movement to ban nuclear weapons and ensure nuclear security. Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, the country renounced and decommissioned its nuclear arsenal, the world's fourth largest at that time, and shut down the Semipalatinsk nuclear test site. It became a steadfast champion for nuclear non-proliferation - a role it plays to this day.• In 2009, Kazakhstan and its four neighbours in the region established, by the Treaty of Semipalatinsk, the Central Asian Nuclear Weapons Free Zone (CANWFZ) and has worked to strengthen it ever since. Kazakhstan has urged progress on launching a similar zone in the Middle East.• In 2012, Kazakhstan launched The ATOM (Abolish Testing. Our Mission) Project, an international education and advocacy campaign seeking to galvanise global public opinion against nuclear weapon testing and, ultimately, nuclear weapons. Already, more than 200,000 people from 100 countries supported its call.• In 2015, the Government of Kazakhstan signed a host country agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to establish a low-enriched uranium bank in the country to provide the world with a guaranteed supply of the fuel for civic nuclear energy, thus making an important contribution to strengthening the non-proliferation regime.• In 2015, Kazakhstan and Japan assumed co-chairmanship in the Article XIV Conference of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, seeking to bring this important international instrument closer to entry into force.Kazakhstan's contribution to achieving the Iranian nuclear deal• Kazakhstan's neutral and balanced approach in the international arena has resulted in the country gaining a reputation as an honest and impartial arbitrator in conflict resolution. Kazakhstan played an important role in the success of the Iranian nuclear deal by hosting two rounds of negotiations between Iran and P5+1 in 2013, as well as directly participating in the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). In particular, Kazakhstan delivered natural uranium to Iran in exchange for the country giving up its enriched uranium.Kazakhstan's contribution to finding solutions to global crises• In 1992, Kazakhstan launched the process of convening the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA), a structure for promoting security in Asia that has never existed before. By 2015, it has become an increasingly influential forum bringing together 26 countries (from Egypt, Iran, and Israel in the west to Russia, China, India and Pakistan, as well as Vietnam and others in the east). By working to promote better understanding among its members, CICA has contributed to reducing tensions among its members such as India and Pakistan.• Kazakhstan has made a contribution to the settlement of the Syrian crisis, providing a platform for the two rounds of Syrian opposition talks on in May and October 2015.• In 2014 and early 2015 President Nazarbayev held a series of talks with the international parties involved in the Ukrainian crisis, and assisted significantly with the convening and eventual success of the two Minsk summits on the issue in August 2014 and February 2015.• Kazakhstan deployed its observers to the UN peacekeeping missions to maintain peace in Western Sahara and Cote d'Ivoire.• Kazakhstan's partnership with the global community has also been fundamental to the smooth operation of the Northern Distribution Network to supply the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan.• In 2015, Kazakhstan supported global efforts to counter terrorism and extremism by hosting in Astana the Regional Conference on Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) for Central and South Asia and participated in two CVE summits in Washington, D.C. and New York. At the U.N. General Assembly in 2015, President Nazarbayev urged world leaders to reinforce their anti-terrorism efforts and proposed establishing a UN-led world-wide network against terrorism.Kazakhstan's contribution to stronger international dialogue, inter-ethnic and inter-religious harmony• As a nation that has many ethnic groups and a multicultural identity, Kazakhstan has promoted its belief in the importance of inter-ethnic, inter-cultural, and inter-religious dialogue, understanding and non-discrimination.• Since 2003, Kazakhstan has hosted the triennial Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, initiated by President Nazarbayev. The 5thCongress in June 2015 brought together leaders and high representatives of more than ten religions, as well as the UN Secretary General, the King of Jordan and the President of Finland.• Kazakhstan was the main initiator of the proclamation by the United Nations of the International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2013-2022), aimed at promoting solidarity among all the peoples of the world, equality, inclusiveness, as well as cultural diversity.• In 2010, Kazakhstan chaired the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), becoming the first country from the CIS, Asia and the first predominantly Muslim country to do so. Under the motto of Four Ts - Trust, Tolerance, Transparency and Tradition - Kazakhstan was able to give a new impetus to the organisation and to convene its first summit in 11 years in Astana, which reaffirmed the principles on which it is based, with particular emphasis on the vision of a common and indivisible Euro-Atlantic and Eurasian security community. During the chairmanship, Astana also hosted a high level conference on tolerance which provided a good basis for common work on promoting tolerance towards all in the OSCE participating states.• In 2011-12 Kazakhstan headed the OIC and made significant efforts to creating better understanding between predominantly Muslim nations and the rest of the world, also helping to launch, among others, OIC Human Rights Commission. It was at our initiative and during our chairmanship that the Organisation of Islamic Conference changed its name to the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation to reflect its broader goals of promoting cooperation among its 57 member states. And it was our initiative and during our chairmanship that the OIC decided to establish the Islamic Organisation for Food Security. 2.Kazakhstan's contribution to global developmentKazakhstan's contribution to global sustainable development• Kazakhstan is determined to play its role in the efforts of the global community to build a more environmentally-friendly world which is energy, food and water secure.• Kazakhstan has initiated the creation of the Islamic Organisation on Food Security of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.• Kazakhstan is working on the implementation of the Global Energy-Ecological Strategy, as well as Astana's "Green Bridge" initiative, aimed at encouraging easier transfer of "green" technologies among countries.• Kazakhstan will host the EXPO-2017 International Specialized Exhibition, with the theme of Future Energy, which will focus on the environmental challenges facing humanity and how to overcome them. Kazakhstan now works with its partners to establish an international center for the transfer of green technologies under the UN auspices.• Kazakhstan fully supports the facilitation of the Agenda for sustainable development for the period after 2015, taking active part in the negotiations on the Post 2015 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals.• As part of the preparations for the Rio+20 Summit, Kazakhstan proposed the Green Bridge Initiative aimed at developing partnerships among European, Asian and Pacific countries in order to transform the current conventional development models into 'green growth' concepts.Recent Focus: Helping Those in Need• Kazakhstan has transitioned in a short period of slightly more than 20 years from a recipient of aid to a donor. This is illustrated by the ongoing creation of Almaty Sub-regional Hub of Multilateral Diplomacy, consisting of 19 representative offices of UN organisations and programmes, as well as the country's intensive preparations to launch its own system of international development aid, provisionally branded as KazAID.• Kazakhstan has already provided various forms of assistance to the UN member states in the amount of more than $100 million.• Significant support has been given to Afghanistan, including the provision of 1,000 scholarships for Afghan students in Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan also provided aid to Afghanistan in the form of food, education and financial assistance for infrastructure projects, intended for building schools, hospitals and the rebuilding of roads. Support was also provided to Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan during their humanitarian crises.• Kazakhstan donated to the "African Union Support to the Ebola Outbreak in West Africa" (ASEOWA) aid programme to fight the epidemic.• In 2015, Kazakhstan and the UNDP launched a project called "Updating Professional Skills to Improve Productivity, Employment and Development" to support the delivery of development assistance to countries in Africa through capacity-building training. The project, in which more than 70 specialists participated from African states, took place in 2015 and focused on oil & gas exploration, public health and agriculture.• During the 70thSession of the UN General Assembly, Kazakhstan and the UNDP signed a $2 million cost-sharing agreement for a new project - "Africa-Kazakhstan Partnership for the SDGs". This agreement focuses on technical support to the ministries of foreign affairs and other relevant institutions in 45 African countries. The project will promote the sharing of institutional experiences and best practices, as governments prepare to take forward the new 2030 Global Agenda for Sustainable Development.• The government of Kazakhstan has funded 12 countries in support of bio-gas projects for the Pacific Small Island Developing States (PSIDS) in cooperation with ESCAP (Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu and the Republic of Vanuatu).• In September 2015, Kazakhstan announced that it will provide additional assistance to PSIDS countries, together with ESCAP, to support their development in the framework of the "Supporting Inclusive and Sustainable Development in the Small Islands Developing States in the Pacific region" project.• Kazakhstan is increasing cooperation with the largest integration associations of America (OAS, CARICOM and the Union of South American Nations). Kazakhstan has funded 3 OAS programs in 2014-2015:"Virtual education courses, Ensuring gender equality for observance of rights of women", "Strengthening of the system facilitating decision-making for managing risks of natural disasters in Central America and the Caribbean Basin" and "Promoting Circular economies in OAS Member States through Closed Looped Cycle Design and Production Methods". Kazakhstan is also engaged in the work of the CARICOM Community. Kazakhstan has launched the second phase of assistance to Small Island Developing States by allocating funds through the CARICOM Secretariat as a means of institutional development in the framework of the "Supporting Inclusive and Sustainable Development in Small Islands Developing States in Caribbean, the press service of the Kazakhstan Embassy in the U.S. reports.

$ 255 billion of foreign direct investment attracted Kazakhstan within the years of independence, informed the President Nursultan Nazarbayev speaking at the plenary session of AEF-2016 themed "The new economic reality: diversification, innovation and knowledge economy"."We were able to establish effective cooperation with the leading transnational cooperation. During the years of independence $255 billion of direct foreign investments have been attracted to Kazakhstan. I thank all the companies who gave credit to Kazakhstan, invested in our country," N. Nazarbayev said."I think it is a direct indicator of confidence in our country and its reforms," added the Head of State."Kazakhstan is a young state. This year we celebrate 25th anniversary of our independence. For a quarter of the century we have entered the Top 50 most competitive countries of the world," concluded the President.

The 29th plenary sitting of the Foreign Investors Council under the President of Kazakhstan was held in the Palace of Independence in Astana . The theme of the sitting is "Astana - International Financial Center". 30 foreign investors will launch new productions in Kazakhstan in 2016, Minister of Investment and Development of Kazakhstan Asset Issekeshev told. "The Ministry of Investment and Development has been working on the principle of one-stop window since January 2016. An investor can have about 300 state services in one place. Now we are providing assistance to investors since the moment they enter the market of Kazakhstan to the moment of the final stage of project implementation. Over 500 investors have used this service over the last four months. Despite all emerging challenges we can see that the interest of investors in Kazakhstan as a center of investments in the region remains strong," A. Issekeshev said delivering a report on fulfilling the instructions given at the 28th plenary sitting of the Council.According to him, more than 200 initiatives of foreign investors in the processing sector are being implemented with the total volume of investments exceeding USD 40 bln. Besides, 30 foreign investors will launch new productions this year. Special attention is also paid to international companies that submitted over 40 initiatives. According to Minister of Investments and Development, a center for advanced materials and additive technologies and a center for financial technologies FinTech will be opened in Kazakhstan in 2016. "We have begun cooperation with the leading global players for introduction of the technology Industry 4.0 and incubation of some new directions from advanced materials, additive technologies and others taken into account the growing influence of new technologies on traditional sectors. A joint center of technological competences in the ore-mining sector was established this year too. It was established jointly with American companies McKinsey and Google with the use of cloud technologies and automation," A. Issekeshev said.Besides, the minister informed that a center for advanced materials and additive technologies established jointly with Materia Company from American, and a center for financial technologies called FinTech established jointly with IBM company.

The Minister added that over 60 of 200 active projects are in the agro-industrial complex. "I would like to note that more than 60 of 200 active projects all at the agro-industrial complex. We are currently working with such companies as Korean Lotte, French Lactalisand German Meggleand others companies on implementation of projects in 9 regions of Kazakhstan in the agro-industrial complex," A. Issekeshev said.The Minister also noted that Italian Cremonini Companyrecently informed about the beginning of construction of the modern factory on production of meat products. This work held jointly with the Ministry of Agriculture will continue.A. Issekeshev also noted that over 200 initiatives of foreign invers are now implemented in the processing industry, and they account for the total amount of potential investments over USD 40 bln.

Independence is the greatest value of Kazakhstan. However, it would be impossible to reach sovereignty without unity and harmony of the people. As the Head of the State stressed, "the history of Kazakhstan's independence is a chronicle of accord and stability, peace and unbreakable unity."  

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Касымова Эльмира
Касымова Эльмира