All Posts (94)

Uzbekistan and China signed around 100 contracts worth a total of US$23 billion during the 5-day visit from 11th-15th May, 2017 of Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev to Beijing at the invitation of Chinese President Xi Jinping. Sectors encompassing energy to oil refining, electricity to agriculture, chemicals to transport and communications were covered. This was Mirziyaev’s first visit to China since his election in December, 2016 after the death of Islam…

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Economic Developments - May 2017

In his statement at BRF, Mitziyoyev expressed hope that China-Kyrgyzstan-Uzbekistan railway network (including Afghanistan), could be integrated into the Belt and Road, via connections to ports in Pakistan and Iran. 

Speaking at the Summit, Nazarbayev stressed that Central Asia has regained its strategic importance and has become the main bridge between the world’s largest markets.

Xi Jinping said China is…

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Economic Developments - April 2017

On April 10, 2017, Areva and Kazatomprom signed a major agreement to strengthen their long-standing cooperation in the uranium mining sector in Kazakhstan. The agreement will open up new opportunities for further development and enhancement of the joint-venture Katco (Areva (51%) and Kazatomprom(49%)).

Moscow-based Expert Center for Eurasian Development has studied Central Asian and Caucasian countries in terms of their attractiveness for investment,…

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Political Developments - April 2017

President Shavkat Mirziyoyev of Uzbekistan paid his first visit to Russia after being elected to this position, on 4-5 April, 2017. 16 bilateral agreements, contracts and other documents including a US$12-billion package of deals on implementation of major investment projects and US$3.8 billion in trade and economic spheres were signed during the visit. Documents signed included a framework agreement on joint financing of investment projects, joint manufacturing of…

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Shri M.J. Akbar, Minister of State for External Affairs visited Kyrgyzstan on 16-17 April, 2017. During his visit he called on Kyrgyz President Atambayev, met with Foreign Minister and interacted with State Commission on Religious Affairs and National Institute of Strategic Studies.

Second India-Kyrgyzstan Business Forum was held in New Delhi on 29 March. 18 entrepreneurs from Kyrgyzstan and more than 100 from India attended the forum which was hosted…

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Jaypee Group, the Uttar Pradesh-based infrastructure and energy conglomerate has signed an MoU with Kazakhstan's national agency for export and investment (KAZNEX INVEST) for collaboration in several areas of mutual interest. MoU was signed during visit of a delegation of Jaypee Group to Kazakhstan in end-February, 2017.

The delegation met with several Ministers, Kazakhstan state bodies, national and private companies in Almaty and Astana. Discussions were held on several projects…

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Political Developments - March 2017

Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan on 27th-28th February, 2017. The visit took place against background of escalation of problems in the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO), the two Eurasian integration programs. Aim of the visit was to mitigate tensions in Eurasian area and promote new guarantees of stability.

Putin met Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev in Almaty and…

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Economic Developments - March 2017

Real incomes of Kazakhstan’s population fell by 4.5% in 2016, the largest decrease in living standards over the past 16 years. This is on account of international economic slowdown, decline in global prices of energy and sluggish performance of Russian and Chinese economies, its main trading partners.  

Kyrgyzstan has temporarily suspended meat imports from China pending a joint inspection by EAEU countries to determine whether the imports will be allowed into…

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Political Developments - February 2017

Turkmenistan’s incumbent President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov was convincingly re-elected as President for a third term of seven years, securing 98% of the votes polled in a heavily one-sided election on 12th February, 2017. He demolished eight other token candidates that included subordinate regional officials and director of a government-owned oil refinery. Turkmenistan's official news organization reported that international observers found only minor voting problems,…

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Economic Developments - February 2017

Pipeline construction and gas-field development on the 1,680 km Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline commenced in Turkmenistan in 2015. Commissioning of the project is likely to be delayed by one year from 2019 to 2020 because of inability of Turkmenistan to achieve financial closure on the project. It was earlier scheduled to attain this by December 2016, but now it has been moved forward to June 2017. The four countries have signed a…

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Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) successfully launched "Al-Farabi-1", a 1.7 kg Technology Demonstrator nano satellite built by Al-Farabi Kazakh National University, Almaty along with 103 other satellites using Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C37) from Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota on 15th February, 2017.  The successful launch of Kazakhstan's nano satellite is expected to pave the way for further bilateral cooperation in the field of…

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Political Developments - January 2017

Kazakhstan started its term as non-permanent member of UN Security Council (UNSC) for 2017-18 on 1st January, 2017. Kazakhstan stated that promoting global nuclear disarmament will be its top priority. It called on all member states to rid the world of nuclear weapons by 100th anniversary of United Nations in 2045. On global extremism and terrorism, Kazakhstan called for establishment of a global anti-terrorist coalition under UN auspices. Singling out…

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President Emomali Rahmon of Tajikistan paid a five day visit to India from 14th to 18th December, 2016. This was his sixth visit to India. Tajikistan is one of the three countries out of the five in Central Asia with which India has enhanced its engagement to strategic partnership level. President Rahmon extended support to India's membership of UN Security Council and also to its forthcoming membership of Shanghai Cooperation Organization. He warmly welcomed…

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Economic Developments - January 2017

Travel to Kazakhstan has been made visa-free for nationals of 45 countries including those from Europe, UAE and Western countries. India is not included in this list. This has been done to improve the investment climate and also to promote tourism to the country. Kazakhstan will host several major international events during the current year including EXPO 2017 in Astana and Winter Universiade in Almaty.
According to Global Passport Power Rank published by Montreal…

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About the Author

Ambassador Ashok Sajjanhar

Former Ambassador of India to Kazakhstan, Sweden and Latvia; President, Institute of Global Studies and Distinguished Fellow, Ananta Centre

Ambassador Ashok Sajjanhar belongs to the Indian Foreign Service and has acquitted his responsibilities in the diplomatic service for 34 years. He was Ambassador of India to Kazakhstan, Sweden and Latvia and has worked in senior diplomatic positions in Indian Embassies/Missions in Washington DC, Brussels, Moscow, Geneva, Tehran, Dhaka and Bangkok and also at Headquarters in India. He negotiated for India in the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations and in negotiations for India-EU, India-ASEAN and India-Thailand Free Trade Agreements.

He contributed significantly to strengthening strategic ties and promoting cultural cooperation between India and USA, EU, Russia and other countries.Ambassador Sajjanhar worked as head of National Foundation for Communal Harmony to promote amity and understanding between different religions, faiths and beliefs. Ambassador Sajjanhar has been decorated by Governments of Kazakhstan and Latvia with their National Awards and by Universal Peace Federation with Title of ''Ambassador of Peace.'' Currently Ambassador Sajjanhar is President of Institute of Global Studies, New Delhi. He writes, travels and speaks extensively on issues relating to international relations, foreign policy and themes of contemporary relevance and significance. He appears widely on TV panel discussions. Ambassador Sajjanhar is interested in reading, music and travelling. His wife Madhu is an economist and an educationist. They have a son and a daughter both of who are accomplished singers. Their son passed out of Yale University and their daughter is pursuing her PhD at University of Minnesota.