Dr. Pravesh kumar Gupta
A year has passed since bloody protests erupted in Kazakhstan, bringing out not only people’s frustrations with socioeconomic issues, but also attempts at regime change. Although these protests have caused significant damage to lives and property in Kazakh cities, such as Almaty, on the positive side, the reforms initiated by President Tokayev since his election in 2019 have been accelerated in the aftermath of the January events.
Economic growth and development are critical to a country’s socioeconomic progress. Therefore, economic reforms were initiated in tandem with larger-scale political and constitutional reforms. The Strategic Planning and Reform Agency of the Republic of Kazakhstan was established by the President of Kazakhstan in recognition of the importance of economic growth for the creation of a just and equitable state, a slogan of president Tokayev.
This agency was established to analyse current trends and conditions and to provide useful recommendations for the country’s economic development. The Agency’s mission is to create effective reforms that will improve the country’s competitiveness and people’s well-being. The Agency is the central organisation in charge of creating a new public administration system. It also develops state policy in strategic planning, oversees and evaluates the execution of development plans, and monitors and reports on the implementation of those plans. The Agency includes the National Bureau of Statistics in its organisational structure which helps it develop and execute state policy in the area of statistics.
The chairman of the Strategic Planning and Reform Agency of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Mr Aset Ergaliyev, stressed that the nation has entered a new phase of its development during a briefing to the visiting media from various countries. He informed that the radical changes to the political and economic systems were started by the president of the country and in the presidential elections held in November 2022 and a national referendum in June 2022, the people of Kazakhstan supported these initiatives. Mr Ergaliyev also highlighted that political changes would be accompanied by economic reforms and they will encourage entrepreneurship, diversify the economy, and draw in investment which is essential for the overall development of a nation.
A series of actions are being taken to ensure the rule of law, fair competition, and the growth of economic freedoms to establish the necessary conditions. To ensure equal conditions and opportunities for entrepreneurial services, new budget and tax codes are being signed. Furthermore, the judicial and law enforcement systems are being updated, and work is being done actively on infrastructure and industrial development. Mr Ergaliyev also emphasised that the development of human capital is given considerable attention under new reform measures. The primary objective of the overall political and economic reforms is to ensure sustainable, high-quality, and inclusive development of Kazakhstan while also enhancing the welfare of every Kazakh citizen.
It wouldn’t be incorrect to say that the republic of Kazakhstan is reshaping based on Mr Aset Ergaliyev’s remarks. The socio-economic problems that the country’s citizens were experiencing last year caused protests, which gave disruptive forces a chance to destabilise the nation. However, in the wake of the protests, President Tokayev clearly understood what the people needed, so his reform initiatives are primarily focused on the needs of the people and, if fully implemented, will transform Kazakhstan into a just and fair state.
(DR. Parvesh Kumar Gupta is a well-known Senior Scholar, Analyst and Researcher from India)