The world has recently been experiencing considerable turmoil. The COVID-19 pandemic, which has had an enormous impact on the world, is still present, along with various other geopolitical challenges. Multilateralism has also been blurred, and the global order has nearly collapsed. In terms of supply chain disruptions, food shortages, economic slowdown, and fractured globalisation, these issues have significantly impacted low- and middle-income economies worldwide. It should be noted that conflicts between big powers throughout the world are currently causing greater problems for several different countries than they do for the ones directly engaged.
Given their involvement in the global geopolitical conflict, the great nations cannot be trusted to address these challenges successfully since their geopolitical interests overshadow the progress of mankind and the global community. Therefore, it becomes crucial to consider how nations dealing with the consequences of these problems play a role. It is important to acknowledge Kazakhstan’s contribution in this regard. Kazakhstan has played an essential role in regional and international conflict settlement efforts. One of the most notable examples of Kazakhstan’s commitment to conflict resolution is its participation in the 1990s negotiations to end Tajikistan’s civil war. Kazakhstan sponsored a series of discussions between the warring parties, and its efforts were critical in ending the conflict.
Kazakhstan has a multi-religious, multi-ethnic, and multi-cultural society living peacefully. It organizes the Congress of the Leaders of the World and Traditional Religions, which is held regularly on an interval of three years. As a culturally diverse state, Kazakhstan has become a focal point for inter-religious, inter-cultural, and inter-civilizational discussion and interaction. It has provided a critical forum for conflict avoidance through the Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions.
Kazakhstan has also actively promoted peace and stability through its membership in regional organisations like the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) and the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA). Noting the importance of CICA, Kazakh President Tokayev at a high-level CICA summit in Astana in 2022 said that CICA has the appropriate potential to consolidate the collective will and wisdom of Asian states in the interests of peace, cooperation, and development. Kazakhstan has also sent its forces to the peacekeeping mission in Lebanon as part of the United Nations (UN) Interim Force in Lebanon. Overall, Kazakhstan’s attempts to resolve disputes show its dedication to fostering peace and stability regionally and globally.
As a commitment to promote security and peace in the region via dialogue and discussion, the Government of Kazakhstan organized the Astana International on June 8-9, 2023. The Astana International Forum brought participants from different regions and sectors together to address the challenges the world is facing now. These issues include regional cooperation, global economy, energy, climate change, and growth. A number of meetings were held at various levels in this forum. These meeting addressed some critical global concerns, including climate change, energy security, and food shortages.
The need for investment and cooperation to develop new infrastructure and expand current infrastructure, as well as changes in global and regional trade, trade regulations and agreements along the route, were all discussed in this event. It was stated that because of shifting trade flows and the global geopolitical environment, countries are being forced to diversify their existing trade routes and chase new markets. In this context, the Middle Corridor, which connects Asia and Europe and passes through Kazakhstan, has become essential for boosting the connectivity of the Eurasian continent. In return, Kazakhstan might provide its own infrastructure and the capacity of the Astana International Financial Centre to facilitate agreements, attract investors, and facilitate cross-border trade.
Significant contributions have been made by Kazakhstan to regional and global discussions for conflict resolution and development of the region. This Central Asian state has once more endeavoured to bridge the deficiencies in international relations through the Astana International Forum, which is crucial for the holistic development of the world.
Dr. Pravesh Kumar Gupta