Foreign Media on Kazakhstan: Border Agreement With Uzbekistan, Cooperation With Switzerland, Presidency at SCO


From the border demarcation agreement with Uzbekistan, strengthening cooperation with Switzerland to Kazakhstan’s presidency at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, Kazinform presents a review of foreign media coverage about Kazakhstan this week.

Eurasia Review published an opinion column on July 12 written by Sneha Yadav, which discusses Kazakhstan’s presidency at the SCO, which the country has assumed in the beginning of July.

This article analyzes the prospects of Kazakhstan during its tenure at the SCO from July 2023 to July 2024 and emphasizes Kazakhstan’s efforts to tackle regional issues, enhance collaboration among member nations, and advance stability and progress in the region.

«Within the SCO, Kazakhstan places a high value on regional security. To address common challenges such as terrorism, extremism, and separatism, the country actively participates in joint military exercises, intelligence-sharing mechanisms, and counterterrorism efforts. Kazakhstan’s cooperation with other SCO member states aims to improve regional collective security and stability. Kazakhstan is poised to prioritize regional security and stability as the upcoming SCO presidency. The country will collaborate closely with member countries to address common security challenges such as terrorism, extremism, and drug trafficking. Kazakhstan’s experience in counterterrorism efforts, as well as its close collaboration with regional partners, position it well to lead in improving the situation,» reads the article.

Baku-based Trend news agency published an article on July 14, covering Uzbekistan’s plans to establish major assembly plants for agricultural machinery in Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. The article cites Olimkhon Rustamov, Deputy Minister of Investments, Industry, and Trade of Uzbekistan, who said that negotiations with partners are in the final stage.

«In January 2023, the unified project, the cluster of Tashkent Tractor Plant LLC, was launched. The total cost of the project amounted to $65 million. The annual production capacity of the plant is 15,000 units of agricultural machinery, with the total value of the produced goods reaching $165 million. It is expected to generate an annual net profit of $16.5 million,» reads the article.

AKIpress news agency based in Bishkek reported on July 13 about the government meeting chaired by Prime Minister Alikhan Smailov, which, among other topics, discussed water supply for agricultural producers of southern regions of the country.

«According to Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources Zulfia Suleimenova, vegetation in Almaty, Jambyl, Kyzylorda and Turkestan regions affected by dry hydrological cycle. The situation is stable in Almaty and Jetysu regions. The water reservoirs in Turkestan, Kyzylorda and Jambyl regions have insufficient water levels. The Ministry of Ecology works with line agencies of Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan concerning water supply schedules,» reads the article.

The article continues to mention that Smailov tasked the government to «intensify rehabilitation, modernization and digitalization of hydropower facilities for reduction of water losses and introduction of water saving technologies in the agroindustrial sector on the whole.»

Caspian News, a Baku based media outlet, published an article on July 11, referring to the agreement between AzerTelecom and Kazakhtelecom, the telecommunications operators of Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan, to establish a joint venture for the construction and operation of the Trans-Caspian Fiber-Optic Communication Line.

«This agreement marks another significant step forward in the ongoing partnership of the companies for the construction of the fiber-optic line, which will extend across the seabed of the Caspian Sea along the Azerbaijan-Kazakhstan route,» reads the article.

The document, signed by y Vasyl Latsanych, head of Telecom at NEQSOL Holding, a group of companies which includes AzerTelecom, and Kuanyshbek Yessekeyev, Kazakhtelecom Chairman, «outlines the purpose and objectives of the joint venture, focusing on governance, as well as the construction and operation of the Trans-Caspian Fiber-Optic Communication Line along the Azerbaijan-Kazakhstan route.»

EU Reporter published an article on July 13, discussing the meeting between Kazakh Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Murat Nurtleu and Federal Councilor and head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of Switzerland Ignazio Cassis on July 5.

«The parties addressed the state and prospects for the development of cooperation in all fields, as well as interaction in a multilateral format, including important issues on the international and regional agenda. The sides also discussed the bilateral legal framework with plans to expand and enhance the partnership, particularly in areas of confiscation and return of assets obtained by criminal means,» reads the article.

On July 11, Mining Technology, a news website that covers the mining industry, published an article, covering Polymetal International company’s increase of its stake in the Baksy property in Kazakhstan to 75% by buying out one of the project’s shareholders.

«By exercising the option, Polymetal’s stake in the project has been increased from 7.5% to 75%. The remaining 25% stake is held by state-owned JSC Kazgeology,» reads the article.

The news website cites Polymetal International CEO Vitaly Nesis, who said that «Baksy fits the company’s strategy of focusing on copper-gold assets and expanding its presence in Kazakhstan.»

«We plan to continue active exploration and expect the JORC-compliant ore reserve estimate and positive production decision in 2024,» he said.

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