Kyrgyz PMs Discusses Energy, Customs Union in Astana
Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan JoomartOtorbayev met with Prime Minister of Kazakhstan Karim Massimov at the fifth session of the Kyrgyz-Kazakh Intergovernmental Council in Astana on Oct. 13. The prime ministers discussed cooperation in the energy sector, transport, cultural and humanitarian ties and border cooperation.
Otorbayev was also received by President of Kazakhstan NursultanNazarbayev on Oct 14 where he briefed his host of the agreements reached, including on the terms of delivery of electricity. Last week Nazarbayev discussed this with his Kyrgyz counterpart AlmazbekAtambayev as the two leaders met on the sidelines of CIS meeting in Minsk.
“Kyrgyz-Kazakh cooperation has become dynamic and practical lately. Active political and economic dialogue is maintained [and] contacts are established at all levels, which make cooperation meaningful,” Otorbayev said.
Kyrgyzstan promised to finalise its position on the implementation of the plan for Kazakhstan’s accession to the Customs Union before the end of 2014.
The parties also agreed to speed up the establishment of a Kazakhstan-Kyrgyzstan private equity fund as well as to prepare a list of promising investment projects consistent with the principles of the investment fund for subsequent transfer to the fund.
At the request of Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan agreed to sell an additional supply of electricity in the amount of 1 billion kilowatt-hours from November 2014 to May 2015.
The council ordered the acceleration of procedures for the signing of an intergovernmental agreement to build a ferro-alloy plant in Kyrgyzstan. The National Centre on Complex Processing of Mineral Resources of Kazakhstan will accelerate the development assessment of the environmental impact of the project and present it by December 2014.
The council also decreed on the quick resolution on the use of an 800-metre stretch of the Bishkek-Naryn-Torugart road passing through the territory of Kazakhstan, near Druzhba Village in Kyrgyzstan’s Chui Oblast.
The council asked the Kyrgyztemirzholu National Railway Company to pay its current debts to the joint-stock railway company Kazakhstan Temir Zholy in the amount of 893,132 Swiss francs (US$945,283) as soon as possible. The parties will also intensify the construction of the Russia-Kazakhstan-Kyrgyzstan-Tajikistan railway line.
Pursuant to prior arrangements, the countries will explore the possibility of using Kazakhstan’s communications and broadcasting KazSat satellites series in the interests of Kyrgyzstan. The council requested the National Centre of Space Research and Technology of Kazakhstan and the Central Asian Institute for Applied Geosciences of Kyrgyzstan to continue to work together on using the existing GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) data network in the seismically active region of Tien Shan to study the geodynamics of the cross-border area.
In the sphere of customs and border protection, the governments agreed to grant the status of multilateral checkpoint at the Auhatty (Kazakhstan) – Ken Bulun (Kyrgyzstan) and Sartobe (Kazakhstan) – Tokmok (Kyrgystan) border crossings.
The status of the Besagash (Kazakhstan) – KichiKapka (Kyrgyzstan) checkpoint will be determined after Kyrgyzstan joins the Customs Union.
Kyrgyzstan’s delegates noted the need to establish cooperation with Kazakhstan to jointly provide an effective mechanism for addressing issues of legal and other protections for labour migrants from Kyrgyzstan to Kazakhstan, particularly in terms of pensions, health and social insurance and other measures.
The parties agreed that when Kyrgyzstan enters the EAEC and submits a draft agreement, Kazakhstan will consider, on a parity basis, an exemption from the registration of incoming Kyrgyz citizens for up to 30 days (similar to agreements it has with Russia and Belarus).
Kyrgyzstan also resolved to undertake measures to protect works on the Chu River bank near Bast Village in the Alamedin district.
Kyrgyzstan will also take steps to complete internal procedures for the ratification of the agreement between the two countries on the establishment of a Centre for Emergency and Disaster Risk Reduction.
The parties agreed to hold the sixth meeting of the Kyrgyz-Kazakh Intergovernmental Council in 2015 in Bishkek.
Central Asia, EU Analyse Steps Taken to Ensure Rule Of Law
Officials of the judicial systems of the EU and Central Asia discussed justice system issues at the fourth Conference of the Ministers of Justice of the Central Asian States and the European Union, which was held on Oct. 14 and 15 in Astana.
“The Conference of Ministers of Justice is traditionally a platform for dialogue established between the Ministries of Justice, academics and practitioners in Central Asia and the European Union on the key issues of modern law,” Minister of Justice of Kazakhstan Berik Imashev said in his opening remarks.
The participants analysed measures taken by states of the EU and Central Asia in order to ensure the implementation of the rule of law of the EU Initiative for Central Asia in constitutional law, criminal law, justice, development and independence.
Interaction between Kazakhstan and the EU is directed towards dialogue and advancement in human rights, education, the rule of law, energy, transport, environmental protection and water resources and trade and economic relations, the Justice Ministry of Kazakhstan reported.
This year alone, Kazakhstan has adopted a new criminal code, along with the new criminal procedures and criminal executive codes to modernise criminal justice in accordance with international standards. The new code of administrative offences provides further reform of administrative and tort law.
The new draft of the civil procedure code, aiming to modernise civil procedural law and provide for the development and integration of the institute of mediation, is being drafted, as is a new project on an entrepreneurial code. New laws aimed at improving enforcement proceedings are also being adopted, the justice ministry reported.
The participants worked in five themed sessions: promoting the rule of law through the development of administrative law in Central Asia; access to justice and alternative methods for the administration of justice; the development of human rights and freedoms under the constitution and criminal justice; contributing to more efficient administration of justice, including mediation; and commercial litigation and secure investment as the necessary conditions for the development of the rule of law.
Further cooperation between Kazakhstan and the EU in the framework of the project will contribute to deepening and improving discussions in this area.
In particular, events such as conferences, seminars and workshops and the development of specialised programmes create favourable conditions for the active exchange of experience among experts in the field of law and the development of specific recommendations to improve the national legal system.
“In the face of new challenges in a globalised world, the main task of the legal policy of each state is on the one hand, to ensure the rule of law; on the other hand, to minimise the security risks of society and the state,” Imashev noted.
The conference was organised by the EU and coordinated by France and Germany under the chairmanship of Italy and the Ministry of Justice of Kazakhstan.
It was attended by representatives of 13 delegations of the Ministries of Justice of the EU and Central Asia, representatives of international and nongovernmental organisations, representatives of state agencies and organisations of Kazakhstan, the academic and business communities, members of the Parliament of Kazakhstan and diplomatic missions of EU member states in Kazakhstan.
Armenia Joins New EEU During Presidents Meeting in Minsk
Armenia officially joined the yet-to-be-launched Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) at a meeting of the presidents of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Russia in Minsk on Oct. 10, while Kyrgyzstan’s progress on implementing a plan for its accession to the group’s predecessor, the Common Economic Space of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia was commended.
The EEU was established on May 29, when the presidents of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia signed the final treaty on the organisation. It will enter into force on Jan. 1, 2015.
Presidents Serzh Sargsyan of Armenia and Almazbek Atambayev of Kyrgyzstan joined President Nursultan Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan, President Vladimir Putin of Russia and President Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus at the Oct. 10 meeting to participate in talks and sign respective documents.
At the gathering, Nazarbayev emphasised the need to better inform the business community and general population of the member states of the real and practical advantages of the EEU. He also called for Kazakhstan’s representation among the personnel of the Eurasian Economic Commission, the permanent ruling body of the EEU, to be increased and for the commission to make quick, correct translations of its documents into member states’ national languages.
The next meeting of the highest level of the Eurasian Economic Union will be held in Moscow in December.
Nazarbayev, Lukashenko, Atambayev, Putin and President Emomali Rahmon of Tajikistan also participated in the last meeting of the Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC) interstate council, signing a treaty terminating the EurAsEC as of Jan.1, 2015. The organisation had been created by those nations in 2000 to build stronger economic connections.
The parties agreed to save the EurAsEC anti-crisis fund and recognised the need to continue intergovernmental programmes for biotechnologies and for reclaiming territories within the member states affected by uranium mining. This session was the final official event of the EurAsEC.
In Minsk on the same day, the heads of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) signed a number of documents intended to foster their increased cooperation in humanitarian issues, security and other areas. Agreements on law enforcement cooperation, including a programme of cooperation in combating illegal migration for 2015 to 2019 and a cooperation concept for combating human trafficking, were signed, and the leaders considered a statement expressing the willingness of the CIS to increase international efforts to combat the flow of drugs, based on strict compliance with international obligations.
Special attention was also paid to humanitarian cooperation, in particular cooperation in education. The participants declared 2016 the Year of Education in the Commonwealth of Independent States and 2015 the Year of the Veteran. They also agreed to hold a joint celebration of the 70th anniversary of the victory in the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945, as proposed by President Putin.
The leaders discussed development activities within the CIS and the execution of the action plan for implementing the CIS development concept in narrow and expanded formats before the document signing ceremony.
Kazakhstan will chair the CIS Heads of State Council in 2015.
“We will continue to work on the development of trade and economic relations, free trade zones, cooperation in transit, agriculture and food security and the humanitarian area,” Nazarbayev said.
“The documents signed at the CIS summit lay a good foundation for further cooperation. Assuming the CIS chairmanship in 2015, Kazakhstan will prepare for the next council of heads of state. It will take place in Astana. Kazakhstan considers the CIS a unique political platform that unites the post-Soviet countries. “There is no other such organisation in our region. It is the best platform for solving arising issues, holding debates and exchanging opinions,” Nazarbayev said.
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