Τρίτη, 8 Νοεμβρίου 2016

FOREIGN POLITICAL PRIORITIES OF KAZAKHSTAN AND THE RELEVANCE OF CHINA

Notice:My friend and colleague Gulnar Mukhametkaliyeva, an academic at Almata, Kazakhstan, sent me her article knowing that I am particularly interested in what is happening in her country. I had the opportunity to visit Kazakhstan on three occasions, on teaching assignments at the University of Kainar as part of a scientific collaboration program with France. I have decided to post it on my blog and to spread it as widely as possible, because I think that its content is particularly interesting for Greece, in many aspects. As may be seen, the article offers valuable insights as to the objectives of this wealthy, peaceful and rapidly developing Asian country, and I believe that a collaboraion of the latter with Greece would have a lot of benefits for our country.

Maria Negreponti-Delivanis
former Rector and Professor at the University of Macedonia                        

Thessaloniki, 08.11.2016





FOREIGN POLITICAL PRIORITIES OF KAZAKHSTAN AND THE RELEVANCE OF CHINA
K.K. Smagulova
G.O. Mukhametkaliyeva
Kazakh National University named after Al-Farabi
Almaty city, Republic of Kazakhstan


Аннотация
paполитики Казахстана и роль Китая во внешней политике нашей республики 
Ключевые слова: Казахстан, Китай, внешняя политика, сотрудничество, стратегическое партнерство

Summary
In article the priority directions of foreign policy of Kazakhstan and a role of China in foreign policy of our republic are considered
Keywords: Kazakhstan, China, foreign policy, cooperation, strategic partnership

       Since Kazakhstan declared independence, our country has been playing a significant role in the international community, worldwide economic and political space. Having presented many international initiatives, Kazakhstan has been leading a multi-vector policy. Our country became an active actor of foreign relations nowadays and is a dynamic participant in solving global and regional problems collectively.
Our leader N. Nazarbayev has once again determined key directions of Kazakhstan’s foreign policy in his message to Kazakh people called “Kazakhstan-2015” strategy – new political direction of a formed state”: “Our priorities will not change – development of the cooperation with our neighbors – Russia, China, Central Asian states, as well as the USA, European Union and Asian countries. We will improve the Customs Union and Common economic space. Our short-term goal is to establish the Eurasian economic union. Thus, we state that any issues will be solved by consensus” [1].
As we see, as the main priorities of Kazakhstani foreign policy were, first of all, mentioned our neighbors – Russia and China. This priority has never changed and will stay as so. Because, the relations with international community are always realized through neighboring countries. And it’s essential that in the sphere of regional security the security built with neighboring states is the most important part. That’s why our Northern neighbor Russia and our Eastern friend China are the key actors in Kazakh foreign politics. Also, in his message our President emphasized the importance of renovating the foreign policy as well as the domestic policy to make them suitable for countering new threats to national security in Central Asia. In this regard, leader of the nation mentioned the following as the priorities of renovating our foreign policy:
·        Strengthening regional and national security;
·        Active development of economic and trade diplomacy;
·        Increasing international partnerships in cultural-humanitarian, scientific-educational and other spheres;
·        Reinforcing the protection of citizens by law, protecting their individual, family and professional interests abroad.
It's the prudent and farsighted politics of our leader that made our country a competent and famous participant of international community. The proof of that could be examples of Kazakhstan’s heading OSCE in 2010, OIC in 2011-2012, SCO in 2010-2011, launching of the 7 winter Asian games in Kazakhstan and our country’s selection as a host for “EXPO-2017” international specialized exhibition.
People’s Republic of China is one of the most rapidly developing countries of our time. It’s the first worldwide by population (more than 1 billion 300 million people) and third by territory (9.6 million square kilometers).
       It’s been more than 20 years since Kazakhstan established diplomatic relations with its Eastern neighbor – China. PRC was in the list of countries which recognized the independence of our country immediately from the first days. It is absolutely reasonable to say that the bilateral relations, based on peaceful neighborhood and mutual benefit principles, has nowadays reached a significantly high level. A sustainable law basis was founded and issues that seemed hard to solve at first were resolved through peaceful negotiations. The cooperation that has started as a simple trade partnership has transformed into a strategic partnership of a highest importance.
Chinese foreign policy also appoints the relations on various fields with Central Asian republics, and most importantly our country, as a priority direction. Chinese Ambassador to Kazakhstan on the foreign political concepts of China: “Since the very establishment, People’s Republic of China has never started any wars first, has never struggled for military expansion, moreover, it follows the five principles of peaceful co-existence in developing the connections with other countries. Chinese development not only never destructed and never threatened in any way the development of Central Asian states, but also has always been trying to form a sustainable external environment and huge possibilities for helping it. We aren’t evolving the cooperation to make an influence sphere in Central Asia. We aren’t developing the SCO to form a military bloc; we aren’t going to transform SCO to any kind of unity of NATO or the Warsaw Pact organization. We are improving our relations in order to ensure the peace, security and economic development together with the countries of our region. China will keep on developing its economic relations with Central Asia, and especially with Kazakhstan. In 2011 the goods turnover between China and Kazakhstan amounted 24.7 billion USD. Parties have pointed a target to risen this category to 40 billion USD until 2015. The geographic location is very convenient and the level of cooperation is strong enough for that” [2].
       The rapid development of Chinese-Kazakh strategic partnership was influenced by political dialogue of the highest level, effective business relations and personal friendship of two countries’ leaders. Head of China Hu Jintao has visited Kazakhstan 7 times and N.Nazarbayev has been to China with official visits and as a participant of international conferences for 17 times. That kind of an often meetings is a rare thing in international experience, and it also emphasizes the importance of the heads of states in the development of bilateral relations [3].
As a result of the President Nazarbayev’s state visit to PRC in February 2011 a mutual communique was signed. This document once again pointed outthat Kazakhstani-Chinese relations are developing rapidly and effectively: “Parties agree that during latest years Kazakh-Chinese strategic partnership connections have been undergoing a stable development. Bilateral relations at highest and high level are becoming closer, the level of mutual understanding and trust is rising non-stop, trade-economic, energy, humanitarian, security spheres, also cooperation on international and regional problems are deepening”. According to the fourth article of the document, parties were satisfied with the measures undertaken right on time to tackle the world financial crisis together [4].
The relevant issue of today –regional security has never been replaced from the agenda of the heads of states’ meetings. Drugs and weapons trafficking, illegal migration, as well as the international terrorism, religious extremism and national separatism problems keep worried not only Kazakhstan and China, but almost all members of international community. For the solution of these problems, parties have been improving their relationships in the framework of Shanghai Cooperation Organization that was established in 2001. Apart from Kazakhstan and China, Russia, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan are the members of the SCO. The arising interest of other countries in SCO demonstrates its importance and effectiveness, the relevance of its principles. Nowadays SCO consists of 6 member-states, 4 observers (India, Pakistan, Iran, Mongolia) and 2 dialogue-partners (Belarus, Sri-Lanka). Kazakhstan and China shares the cooperation in the SCO not only in political sphere, but also trade-economic and cultural-humanitarian.
The stable periodic visits of Kazakhstan’s and Chinese presidents, the signing of agreements on strategically important objects for both, but especially Kazakhstan, have been a push towards the development of bilateral relations to the level of the strategic partnership. In particular, realization of such infrastructure projects like building the modern types of railways, automobile roads, oil and gas tubes, big amounts of credits for the construction of energetic infrastructure have deepened the mutual cooperation. Equally distributing the rights to procession of its oil production sites between Western, Chinese and Russian investors, Kazakhstan tried to balance its interests. But the world financial crisis gave China the opportunity not only to process its oil sector, but also to strengthen its influence on other spheres of economy. Apparently, the rapid activeness of Chinese companies in Kazakhstan is a good thing to help diversifying our economy, but Kazakh people view the rising influence of Chinese in our country with suspicion.
During the SCO summit held on 6 June 2012 Chinese Head of state Hu Jintao and President N. Nazarbayev had a conversation. Hu Jintao made some proposals for deepening their diverse strategic partnership: “Firstly, strengthening mutual political trust, improving connections on different levels, securing both countries’ strategic security and development interests. Secondly, widening business cooperation, motivating bilateral production relations, opening new directions of partnership, deepening energy cooperation, developing the atomic energy, solar energy, wind energy spheres, renew bordering points, updating their infrastructure, widening mutual investment. Thirdly, widening humanitarian connections, improving cooperation in culture, education, travelling and medicine. Fourth - deepening security cooperation, effectively countering drug trafficking, organized transnational crime, improving systematic and information security. Fifth – developing multilateral cooperation, strengthening relations in the frameworks of UN, SCO, CICA, forming a convenient environment for two countries’ development according to the concept based on mutual trust, mutual efficiency, equality and partnership [5].
One of the latest and most important occasions in China was the decision of XVIII meeting of Chinese Communist party, held on 8 November 2012, about replacement of the leadership and transferring of it to the fifth generation representatives. The post of the Head of PRC and Secretary General of Chinese Communist Party which changes each 10 years was given to former deputy Head of China – Xi Jinping. According to Russian scholar S.G. Luzyanin, the great importance of Chinese leadership will continue to exist. It’s essential that despite many changes in development of “socialism with Chinese features” model, the main direction of the Party will remain. Those include: powerful state; leadership role of Chinese ComParty; binds between successors of the leadership in realization of reforms and development strategy [6].
It is quite confirmed that the new Chinese leadership will continue the position which was held until today in the foreign policy. Even though main issues are resolved, there are still many problems that haven’t been regulated. The most outstanding one of them – is transboundary rivers question. There were some declarative documents generally coordinating this issue, but there was no concrete decision on it. But it’s vital to mention that last few years this problem’s regulation process has moved forward quite far. That was caused by the work of mutual Kazakhstani-Chinese commission on usage and defense of transboundary rivers, formed on the basis of bilateral agreement. Though the basic agreement defining the normative status of those rivers hasn’t been reached yet.
In conclusion, it is essential that People’s Republic of China will remain one of the main priorities of our foreign political concept. Both sides are interested in that. Kazakhstani-Chinese relations haven’t lost their development rapidity even in the conditions of latest financial crisis. We can divide the 20 years of cooperation into first ten years of building the normative basis, defining main priorities and basic directions of bilateral partnership and last ten years of raising the cooperation to the higher quality level, solving urgent issues and transforming the economic spheres of strategic importance into the main object of cooperation. Nowadays, huge economic projects started up, the development of non-resource economic spheres is coming up; all of that shows us the sustainability of Kazakhstani-Chinese relations future development. Mutual trust and interest will always remain as the strongest foundation for bilateral connections.

References:
1. Message of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan N.A.Nazarbayev to the nation of Kazakhstan (2014.14.12) // http://www.mod.gov.kz
2. From Marx to Confucius // Express K. 6 November 2012.
3. Evening Astana. 4 December 2012.
4. Mutual communique of the Republic of Kazakhstan and People’s Republic of China http://www.inform.kz/rus/article/2354461
5. HuJintao tong hasakesitan zongtong Nazaerbayefu juxing huitan // http://kz.chineseembassy.org/chn/zhgx/t938702.htm
6. Foreign policy of China in global and regional dimensions // http://www.ras.ru/news/shownews.aspx?id=4c408f27-e0a2-4b39-a08c-018156e18392




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