Kazakhstan Sets to Implement Ambitious Projects With China, Iran

ASTANA—The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Summit on July 4 proved highly productive. It facilitated bilateral meetings that led to significant projects for Kazakhstan. Alongside adopting pivotal documents, the summit saw Kazakhstan forge promising partnerships with Iran and China, resulting in agreements on various collaborative initiatives.

Photo credit: freepik

Iranian companies plan to build major hydraulic structures

Kazakh Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation Nurzhan Nurzhigitov met with Iranian Energy Minister Ali Akbar Mehrabian to discuss constructing new hydraulic structures and reducing irrigation water costs, reported the Kazinform.

According to Mehrabian, Iranian companies intend to implement large-scale projects in Central Asia and, notably, in Kazakhstan, to construct hydraulic structures similar to the Bakhtiari dam and hydroelectric power station. Iran is ready to provide Kazakhstan with modern technologies for transporting irrigation water, which would significantly reduce losses from its evaporation. This problem is relevant mainly to the southern regions of the country.

According to Nurzhigitov, the country needs to create the necessary regulatory framework, restore existing reservoirs and irrigation systems and build new reservoirs.

“The floods showed that the country needs new reservoirs to effectively transport flood water and store it for further use. Iranian companies are implementing very successful projects in their homeland. Seeing the effectiveness of the work being carried out, we are interested in close and long-term cooperation with our Iranian colleagues,” said Nurzhigitov.

Kazakhstan, China to strengthen education cooperation 

Kazakh Minister of Education Gani Beisembayev and Chinese Minister of Education Huai Jinpeng agreed to cooperate in technical and vocational education. According to the Khabar TV channel, Kazakhstan’s college students and teachers can intern in China.

Today, more than 500,000 students study at Kazakh colleges, 70% of them free of charge. Now, they will have the opportunity to obtain a double-diploma education. Also, the countries will implement exchange programs and a number of projects for the innovative development of colleges.

“Kazakhstan introduces many innovations in technical and vocational education. This, in turn, will improve the qualifications of domestic specialists, create a pool of strong personnel and ensure employment. Also, we have reached specific agreements to create competency centers to enhance the qualifications of our teaching staff,” Beisembayev said.

Also, China is ready to provide SCO member states with some 1,000 grants for Chinese language teachers in the next three years and 3,000 quotas for summer camps of the Chinese language competition.

According to Kazakh Minister of Science and Higher Education Sayasat Nurbek, special departments for teaching the Chinese language will be created at the leading state universities of Kazakhstan. Chinese will be recommended as a second language.

Kazakhstan, China agree to develop the space industry

The Kazakh Ministry of Digital Development, Innovation and Aerospace Industry and Chinese partners signed several documents on the sidelines of the SCO summit, according to a July 4 Facebook post by the Kazakh Minister of Digital Development, Innovation and Aerospace Industry Zhaslan Madiyev.

According to the agreement on technical and economic cooperation, Kazakhstan will receive a 100 million yuan (US$13.7 million) grant from China to develop the space industry. The projects are currently in the discussion stage.

Notably, it is planned to develop computational astronomy and modeling, strengthen scientific and technical infrastructure, and organize training and internships at production sites in China.

Another signed memorandum provides for cooperation in creating and operating the International Lunar Research Station (ILRS). Kazakh specialists will gain experience in using high technologies for deep space exploration. Thus, Ghalam LLP and Fesenkov Astrophysical Institute plan to develop a domestic lunar telescope.

“The research results will contribute to the growth of the educational level of young specialists in mathematical modeling, engineering analysis, precision mechanics, materials science, space instrumentation and astrophysics,” said Kazakh Minister Zhaslan Madiyev. 

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