*30TH Anniversary of Independence of The Republic of Kazakhstan and Relations with Pakistan
*MoU signed between Foreign Policy Research Institute of Kazakhstan and Islamabad Policy Research Institute
ISLAMABAD: While celebrating three-decades of congenial and cooperative relations between the Republic of Kazakhstan and Pakistan, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed on Thursday (December 2) in Islamabad between the Foreign Policy Research Institute under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan and the Islamabad Policy Research Institute.
This will bring together five think tanks in both the countries, kick-starting an era of research and academics in various fields of commonalities.
The elaborate roundtable spread over five sessions was graced by His Excellency Kazakhstan’s Ambassador to Pakistan Mr Yerzhan Kistafin and Pakistan’s Ambassador to Kazakhstan Mr Sajjad Ahmed Seehar.
The Kazakh envoy said that his country looks forward to deepening of relations in years to come, and the format of geo-economics has furthered bilateralism. He was referring to a cobweb of regional integration and connectivity underway under the banner of Belt and Road Initiative. He underscored the need for peace and stability in Afghanistan, and termed it as a must to realize a new era in commerce and communications.
Ambassador Kistafin termed the MOU signed on Thursday with think tanks as a step in the right direction, and complemented IPRI for taking the initiative. He said while Kazakhstan is one of the biggest landlocked states in the world, it understands the indispensability of transit and regional amalgamation.
The issues of nuclear security, proliferation, trade protocols, climate change and the necessity of furthering people to people contacts were highlighting in the sessions. The need was stressed for introducing direct flights between the two countries to especially promote interaction between businessmen and academicians.
Relaxing of visa regime and enabling more interaction between the commerce circles of both the countries was underlined — so that Pakistan could especially benefit from economic wonders that the young central Asian state has achieved.
Acting President IPRI Brig (retd) Raashid Wali Janjua brought to fore his personal experiences with the Central Asian State, as an army officer in yesteryears, and eulogized the aspect of foreign policy evolution in the breakaway republic of former Soviet Union.
Janjua said the initiative to form a conclave of think tank is a leap forward, and will cement relations in research and socio-economic development. He highlighted the magnitude of defence cooperation that is evolving between the two countries, in the backdrop of Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa’s visit to Astana, and pointed out the potential in bilateral trade, too.
The sessions were also addressed by Timur Shaimergony, Deputy Director the Library of the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan – Elbasy; Dr Talat Shabbir, Director of China-Pakistan Study Centre, Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI); Ambassador Bolat Nurgaliyev, Chairman of the Board, Foreign Policy Research Institute under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan; Dr. Murat Laumulin, Chief Research Fellow Kazakhstan Institute of Strategic Studies under the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan; Lt. Col. Khalid Taimur Akram (retd), Executive Director Center for Global and Strategic Studies (CGSS); Mr. Beysengazin Kuanysh, Director of the Center for Macroeconomic Research & Forecasting, Kazakhstan Economic Research Institute; Raja Rafuillah, Research Fellow Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (PIDE); Yerzhan Saltybayev, Director Institute of World Economics and Politics (IWEP) and Dr. Tanweer Khalid, Honorary Secretary Pakistan Institute of International Affairs (PIIA). Ambassador (retd) Asif Durrani, Senior Research Fellow IPRI, was also present on the occasion.