External news in brief

Asian Development Bank (ADB) Vice-President Shixin Chen visited Kazakhstan May 14-18, meeting with Prime Minister Askar Mamin, Minister of National Economy Ruslan Dalenov, Minister of Industry and Infrastructure Development Roman Sklyar and First Deputy Minister of Energy Makhambet Dosmukhambetov. Shixin Chen reaffirmed the organisation’s commitment to strengthening its 25-year partnership with Kazakhstan. “We are glad to assist Kazakhstan in its work to achieve Sustainable Development Goals and we are ready to provide further support to the country through investment projects, technical assistance and work to accumulate and spread knowledge meant to ensure a more diversified and inclusive economy,” he said.

A Kazakh delegation visited Vienna May 20-24 to participate in the annual session of the United Nations Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice that gathered UN experts and law enforcement officials from 80 countries. Among the topics on the agenda were the role of effective, fair, humane and accountable criminal justice systems in preventing and countering crime motivated by intolerance or discrimination of any kind, integrating and coordinating efforts by the Vienna-based United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and member states in crime prevention and criminal justice and world crime trends and emerging issues and responses in the field. Kazakh Deputy Prosecutor General Marat Akhmetzhanov briefed the gathering on his country’s criminal and justice reforms, highlighting the improvement of the country’s ratings to the 95th position in terms of prison population per capita. He also met with UN Deputy Secretary-General and UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov and Austrian Federal Ministry of Constitutional Affairs, Reforms, Deregulation and Justice Secretary-General Christian Pilnacek, who noted Kazakhstan’s recent operation to evacuate its citizens from Syria.

Senate Deputy Speaker Bektas Beknazarov met with Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelenskiy, who took the oath of office May 20 after claiming a landslide victory with more than 70 percent of the vote. Beknazarov conveyed congratulations on behalf of Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev and citizens and wished him success in his term. The sides also discussed prospects for Kazakh and Ukrainian ties.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Beibit Atamkulov joined his Central Asian counterparts in Dushanbe May 18 for the seventh Central Asia plus Japan, a meeting of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Japan and Central Asian countries. The dialogue is a Japanese initiative to engage in the region and promote regional integration first announced by Foreign Minister Yuriko Kawaguchi in 2004. The sides discussed trade and investment, transport, tourism and regional security; released a joint statement and adopted the second action plan on regional cooperation. Atamkulov noted Kazakhstan and Japan have developed an expanded strategic partnership, as Japan is Kazakhstan’s seventh largest investor with a trade turnover reaching $2 billion. During the meeting with Afghan Minister Salahuddin Rabbani, Atamkulov reaffirmed Kazakhstan’s commitment to bringing stability to the country and expressed hope the upcoming elections will be fair and transparent.

Kazakh Export, a subsidiary of Baiterek National Holding, opened a representative office in Dushanbe, Tajikistan. The goal is to establish contacts with the Tajik business community and acquaint businesses and financial organisations with its instruments. “This will significantly ease the work between business people of Kazakhstan and Tajikistan and consequently increase the trade turnover,” said Kazakh Export Chair Ruslan Iskakov. During the ceremony, the company also signed agreements with Bank Eskhata, International Bank of Tajikistan and Orienbank to support Kazakh producers.