30 December 2011, 10:35
YEARENDER: Top 20 memorable Kazakhstan's events of 2011
ASTANA. December 28. KAZINFORM This year has been very important for Kazakhstan. It marked the 20th anniversary of independence and summed up the work over this period. Our country achieved great success in economic, political, cultural, humanitarian and sports spheres. Kazakhstan has carried out a lot of significant events. Kazinform Agency offers its readers a chronicle of major events of 2011.
The year has started with the most significant event in the sports sphere. After the groundbreaking OSCE Summit in December, 2010, Kazakhstan was set to showcase its organizational ability and world famous hospitality at the 7th Winter Asian Games that was being held in Astana and Almaty on January 30-February 6, 2011. It was the first time that Kazakhstan hosted such a large event since independence from the Soviet Union.
With the Winter Asian Games, Kazakhstan has begun events as part of celebrations of the 20 anniversary of independence of Kazakhstan. The Games became a success for Kazakhstan. On the threshold of this sports event 10 sports venues were built in the country and they were highly appraised by foreign specialists and sportsmen.
The main record of the Games is 32 gold medals won by one country. Kazakhstan set record for the most gold medals won in the 7th Asian Games. 9 Asian records were broken at 'Alau' speed skating center.
In March, on the threshold of the International Women's Day the I Congress of Women of Kazakhstan has been held in Astana. President Nursultan Nazarbayev attended it. The President also reminded that there were a lot of women in our history who became the "pride of our nation" and noted that women were the beginning of human life. He emphasized that the contribution of women to the population growth in Kazakhstan is priceless.
Definitely, the most important event in the political life of Kazakhstan in 2011 was early presidential elections held in April 3 after N.Nazarbayev rejected to hold a nationwide referendum to prolong his term in office until 2020.
On this day, 9 million 180 thousand Kazakhstani voters chose one of the four candidates: chairman of the Party of Patriots of Kazakhstan Gani Kassymov, secretary of the Communist People's Party of Kazakhstan Zhambyl Akhmetbekov, head of "Tabigat" Environmental Union Mels Yeleussizov or incumbent president of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev.
Voter turnout of the presidential elections in Kazakhstan made 89.9 percent. According to the results of the elections, Nursultan Nazarbayev gained 95.5% of votes, Zhambyl Akhmetbekov - 1.4%, Mels Yeleussizov - 1.2% and Gani Kassymov - 1.9%.
According to the results of a social research, 63.4% of Kazakhstanis are fully satisfied with the results of early presidential elections held April 3, 2011, and 80.1% considers them objective. The personal trust rating of Nursultan Nazarbayev makes today 88.8%. The rating of the Prime Minister and his Cabinet is 65.5% and 61.1% correspondingly.
May started with the People's Unity Day of Kazakhstan. Mass marches and patriotic actions were organized across the country. People celebrated the holiday which symbolizes peace, people's unity, diversity of cultures and their mutual enrichment.
Another highlight of this spring was the IV Astana Economic Forum. Its plenary session titled "New Decade: Challenges and Prospects' with the participation of President of Kazakhstan N. Nazarbayev took place at the Palace of Independence in Astana. The heads of international organizations, scientists, Nobel Prize laureates in economics and representatives of business communities took part in the Forum. The world economy development issues were on the agenda. President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev proposed there to sign a pact on global regulation of world economy. According to the President, this pact is going to become a real document to coordinate key elements of the international economic policy.
On May 18 the 24th plenary meeting of the Foreign Investors' Council chaired by the President of Kazakhstan on "Modernization and renovation of Kazakhstan's enterprises" started its work in Astana at the Nazarbayev University.
The members of the Council, including President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development Thomas Mirow, ArcelorMittal CEO Lakshmi Mittal, stockholder of the Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation Alexander Mashkevich, LUKOIL President Vagit Alekperov and others gathered to share their practice in the sphere of modernization of their companies, and tell about foreign companies' contribution to Kazakhstan's modernization under "Productivity 2020" programme.
May ended with the first sitting of the working group for the bill "On amnesty in connection with the 20th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence". About 2, 200 prisoners and 10, 600 persons sentenced to punishment without isolation from society would undergo the amnesty.
June started with the VII World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF) themed "Globalizing Growth: Connect, Compete, Collaborate". It brought together more than 150 well-known Kazakh and foreign speakers to discuss Islamic banking, development of financial infrastructure, halal industry, and development of small and medium business.
On June 15 the SCO Summit Astana summed up achievements and opened up the future. President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev opened the sitting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization commemorating the 10th anniversary of the SCO founding.
The parties brought to the light the results of the SCO activity over the 10 years and prospects for its further development. Besides, those attending debated a wide range of issues concerning the situation in the world and region.
The Summit ended with the adoption of the Astana Declaration. Upon completion of the Astana Summit China assumed the SCO rotating chairmanship.
President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev, President of China Hu Jintao, President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov, President of Kyrgyzstan Roza Otunbayeva, President of Tajikistan Emomali Rakhmon, President of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai, President of Pakistan Asif Ali Zardari arrived in Astana.
Another breakthrough of Kazakhstan's space activities was Proton-M/Breeze-M launch vehicle with Kazsat-2 and SES-3 (OS-2) satellites that successfully lifted off on July at 05.16 by Astana time from Baikonur space centre.
August started with the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan. The main precepts in the period of fasting are manifestation of mercy and compassion, charitable assistance to the needy and good deeds. It is encouraging that the Muslims of our multinational state follow these requirements and live in peace and harmony with other religions.
On August 12 Heads of State of the Collective Security Treaty Organization come to Astana to attend the informal summit of the organization. CSTO leaders discussed the situation in the CSTO's area of responsibility, the Middle East and Northern Africa.
The autumn 2011 began with a joint session of the Parliament of Kazakhstan on September 1. According to Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev, the 5th session of the Parliament of the fourth convocation was the most crucial, since it fell on the 20th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence. The Kazakh President outlined the tasks to improve the criminal and criminal procedure legislation in the field of countering organized crime, enhance the role of local courts and expand the supervisory role of the Supreme Court, simplify the proceedings and remove unnecessary red tape from the system of justice.
On September 21 Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev attended the 66th session of the UN General Assembly in New York, where he proposed initiatives in the field of security. In particular, Nazarbayev offered to adopt a collective appeal of the international community to de facto nuclear weapons states to renounce their ambitions and join the comprehensive treaties. In addition, he proposed to set up a United Nations Peacekeeping Fund. On the same days the President of Kazakhstan participated in the High-level Meeting on Nuclear Safety and Security in New York.
In October the VI Eurasian Forum KAZENERGY-2011 was held in Astana. For two days, heads of state agencies of various countries and multinational energy corporations, along with world-renowned and reputable experts exchanged views and experience on topical issues of the future development of oil and gas industry in the Eurasian and global space. The forum was timed to the 20th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence. Kazakh Prime Minister Karim Massimov, KAZENERGY Association Chairman, Chairman of "SamrukKazyna" National Welfare Fund Tumir Kulibayev, EU Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger gave speeches at the opening ceremony. Larry King, former host of CNN's talk show Larry King Live, moderated the forum.
In November President Nursultan Nazarbayev paid a working visit to Moscow for participation in the negotiations of heads of state of the Customs Union countries. The leaders of Kazakhstan, Russia and Belarus discussed topical issues of integration in the Eurasian space. Special attention was paid to a joint work on transfer to the next stage of integration - Eurasian Economic Union. Nursultan Nazarbayev, Dmitry Medvedev and Alexander Lukashenko adopted a declaration on the Eurasian Economic Integration, treaty on the Eurasian Economic Commission. They decided that Eurasian Economic Commission will be headquartered in Moscow for the next four years. Viktor Khristenko, Russian Minister of Industry and Trade, was appointed head of the Commission.
The main theme for December was industrial and innovative development of Kazakhstan. The most remarkable events were a forum "Innovative Kazakhstan - a look into the future after 20 years of independence", an exhibition of innovative projects in Astana, and a nationwide teleconference for inauguration of the Industrialization Map projects.
During the national teleconference President Nursultan Nazarbayev launched a score of industrial facilities in the regions. A total of 389 industrial projects have been implemented, which created 90,000 jobs, and investments into the country reached KZT 1.8 trillion, contributing two percent to GDP growth. It is expected that the launch of all the projects at full capacity will have a huge impact on the economy and the social well-being of the people.
Later during the celebratory meeting on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence President Nursultan Nazarbayev urged the Government to develop a strategy of social modernization. According to the President, the strategy must have three priorities. The first is a nationwide program of life quality till 2030, which should cover such aspects as employment, housing, healthcare and education. The second is a nationwide program "Healthy Nation-2030" aimed at developing medical technologies, health infrastructure, increasing life expectancy. And the third key priority is the development of information society through the program "Information Kazakhstan-2030". Its main objectives will be general computerization of society, digitalization of information space.
On the whole, the year of 2011 was full of foreign and internal political events. Most of them were dedicated to the 20th anniversary of Kazakhstan's independence, which culminated in the adoption of the Declaration of the 20th anniversary of independence of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
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