Tokayev encourages youth to take innovative approach to government

NUR-SULTAN – Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev said Jan. 15 at a meeting with representatives of the Presidential Youth Personnel Reserve that the country needs civil servants who are not afraid to take responsibility and make innovative and effective decisions.

Photo credit: Akorda.kz.

The initiative to create the presidential personnel reserve was one of the key issues of Tokayev’s election programme. This year, 300 people were selected for the Presidential Youth Personnel Reserve. Overall, 13,000 people applied for the participation in the personnel reserve.

“You demonstrated high-level competencies and a sincere desire to work for the government. I’m ready to listen to your opinion and present my vision of the tasks facing the personnel reserve,” he said.

The President expects from each representative new ideas and productive work that will help the country’s development.

“You will be appointed to the state bodies and national companies in the future. Fifty-five people included in the reserve have already received new positions,” he said.

This year, 100 civil servants will also be appointed.

Tokayev called on young people, regardless of their position, to make their own contribution to governmental work with small changes in a specific industry, region, city and village.

“A new generation of leaders including you will come to power. You should be ready. You should have the necessary competencies and knowledge. Our youth should be ready for a new historical stage in the development of the country. Knowledge and competencies should be above ambitions. And not vice versa, as it often happens,” Tokayev said.

The renewal of the government is one of the priorities of Tokayev’s domestic political course.

He also noted Kazakhstan had managed to build a government system that has proved its effectiveness in the most difficult times under the leadership of First President Nursultan Nazarbayev.

At the same time, new approaches to the work of the government are necessary to meet new challenges.

According to Tokayev, many countries are in search of governance models that ensure balanced development, offset imbalances and social inequality. Inequality is one of the most used terms in the world economic literature. Norway, New Zealand and the United States study the agile principles in governmental activities. Many countries use the United Kingdom’s experience with project management and create project offices under governments.

“We are also making similar efforts. We need to study its effectiveness and we support this practice. The common objective of all new approaches is to be closer to people. We mean the service model of the government. Kazakhstan needs effective and fair model of government,” he said.

The head of state said the number of civil servants would be gradually reduced beginning this year as part of the public administration system reform. The financing will be used to stimulate the best workforce.

A 25-percent reduction in the number of civil servants and national company employees is expected by 2024.

“This reduction will be based on the revision of the functions unusual for government agencies and its further transfer to outsourcing or civil society,” he said.

Openness and transparency, inclusiveness and prompt response to citizens are the main principles of the concept of the listening state.

“People should have the opportunity to participate in the discussions of urgent issues. Every voice must be heard. It is necessary to develop appropriate political mechanisms. A draft budget for public participation will be implemented taking into account the opinions of residents of the region regarding government spending,” he said.

The Open Government Portal will also empower people to discuss important issues.

“People should not see officials as special category of people who make decisions regarding the whole society. Officials should not seem to be untouchable. Civil servants are part of the people, work for the people and among the people,” he said.

New approaches and systems based on blockchain, Big Data and artificial intelligence will help respond to the needs of society and solve pressing social problems, Tokayev stressed.