Anti-Corruption Programme Seeks to Make Kazakhstan among World’s Least Corrupt Countries within 10 Years

ASTANA – “The government must be accountable to the public and operate both transparently and effectively,” Bauyrzhan Baibek, the first deputy chairman of the Nur Otan party said during a recent international round table titled “Prospects for the Expansion of the Right to Access Information, Forms of Social Control and Anti-Corruption in Kazakhstan.”

corruptionHe also stated that the country’s citizenry must be given the appropriate legislative infrastructure needed to monitor local executive bodies. In order to make this possible, the ruling party had developed an anti-corruption programme for 2015-2025, Baibek said.

He emphasised that Kazakhstan, which is seeking to enter the top 30 most-developed countries by 2050, is implementing anti-corruption reforms. According to Baibek, civil society and nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) should be actively involved in this process.

“The state is implementing major public service reforms. The number of political officials, or political appointees who have not passed state merit based exams due to lack of testing criteria has decreased by eight times. There is now the professional “A” corps [of civil servants]. These officials are those who passed the test on the [Kazakh Constitution] and seven or eight laws; i.e. we are looking to increase the legal culture of those making the decisions. They must be able to communicate with the public and speak Kazakh and Russian perfectly, so that they can  properly and fully handle citizen requests,” Baibek said.

He also said that by 2020, 13 bills pertaining to the implementation of Nur Otan’s 2015-2025 anti-corruption programme should be adopted.

Baibek noted that today, corruption can be found in many leading European countries.

“We see that no country has completely overcome corruption, as corruption is changing its face, it is like rust. Even the United Nations (UN) sees corruption as a key obstacle to achieving its Millennium Development Goals,” he said.

“Every year, the global economy suffers losses of $2.6 trillion, or 5 percent of its GDP due to corruption. The 2014 European Anti-Corruption Commission report stated that corruption affects all 28 EU nations. This comes with an annual price tag estimated at about 120 billion euros,” he said.

“The [Nur Otan] party has set itself the ambitious goal of ensuring that Kazakhstan enters the 30 least-corrupt countries on the Global Competitiveness Index of the World Economic Forum within 10 years of implementing the programme. We have published the party’s financial statements. We have shown everyone that there must be openness,” Baibek concluded.

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