"Establishing an effective system of the regional and global relations ensuring security and peace in the world is one of the key conditions for successful development of Kazakhstan in the long term."
President of Kazakhstan
N. A. Nazarbayev
"G-Global - Twenty-First-Century Peace"
In his book "G-Global - Twenty-First-Century Peace", the Head of State defines a prospect of development of Astana as a new center for international dialogue, an inclusive bridge in the emerging multipolar world. The total objective prerequisites and the opportunities to do so were shared with us by the Head of the International Secretariat of G-Global Mr. Serik Nugerbekov.
- Serik Nugerbekovich, the prospects for development of any city as a major international center were at all times dependent on the ability to attract the major vectors of global and regional developments. It is believed that Astana in this sense has a chance to become an ocean into which all the rivers flow. What factors, in your opinion, reinforce this trend?
- Defining the strategic vectors for development of the Republic and its new capital at the start stage, the Head of State noted that "our goal is not simply to survive in new circumstances of a changing world, but also to continue development by strengthening the previous achievements and extending the opportunities to influence on creating a new world". This thesis is of great creative significance, given that we are at the epicenter of global changes related to the shifting of poles of economic activity from the West to the East and placing more and more issues on the full-fledged development on agenda. In fact, the world today deals with an unprecedented challenge, the kaleidoscopic change of events, when one situation overlaps another. It is clear that, under these conditions, the institutions of the old system of relations, including the world's dialogue platforms, are no longer able to respond adequately to what is happening, to determine the nature of crises and to elaborate the stabilization and development measures for the future. Today, in order to find solutions for the most of global problems, such as environmental, nuclear or cyber security, there is a need for knowledge and experience in a variety of areas of development, which involves joint participation of the representatives of States and non-governmental organizations that pool their considerable capacity of scientists and practitioners on the platforms. This is a key circumstance that predominates a place and a role of Astana in today's geopolitical transformation conditions. But 20 years ago, when the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan N.A. Nazarbaev was creating a foundation for modern capital of Kazakhstan and building the prospects for its establishment as a new center of international dialogue, it was clearly that no one had thought about it apart from the author himself, who could look beyond the "event horizon" and define the main trends of the future.
- Let's try to throw eye on a pass of time, because the 20th anniversary of Astana is around the corner. What is the Secretariat's proposal as an institution of the G-Global platform in this regard?
- It should be noted that the program block of the anniversary-related events will consist of both cultural and political contents — forums, conferences and actions. In general, all of this will be a telling illustration of the modern development of Astana. But that's not enough. This must be a demonstration of the capacity and a place of our capital in the global mainstream. Given the increased role of Astana in ensuring an effective exchange of views among countries on today's relevant topics, there is a need to institutionalize all the projects of the Head of State and to formally recognize Astana as the center of dialogue between developed and developing countries. In this regard, the Secretariat proposes during celebrating the 20th anniversary of Astana to present broadly all international projects of the President of Kazakhstan under the common name "G-Global Platform" with demonstrating main stages of their progress, from an idea to the global practice. To do this, we believe it is reasonable to use capabilities of the G-Global Communications Platform, the XI Astana Economic Forum and the EXPO-2017 infrastructure. Within the framework of the 20th anniversary of Astana, the International Scientific and Practical Symposium could be held that would summarize and synthesize the years of experience of the consolidated efforts of the world public, global development institutions, scientists and practitioners, representatives of business and financial institutions to support and promote the international initiatives of the President of Kazakhstan Mr. Nazarbaev. The main task of the Symposium is a simultaneous presentation of all international projects of the Head of State so as to institutionalize and further promote through the joint efforts of the world community. Many projects of the President of Kazakhstan today have become brands, synonymous with regional and global security, and ensure stability and sustainability in specific geopolitical coordinates. In other words, the question is a significant value asset that requires scientific assessment and, of course, international recognition. The scales of the implemented ideas of the President of Kazakhstan N.A. Nazarbayev fascinate imagination of any today's reformer. It includes Eurasian Economic Union, ATOM project, IAEA Nuclear Fuel Bank, OSCE Summit, Conference on Interaction and Confidence-building Measures in Asia (CICMA), Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, Astana Economic Forum, Green Bridge Partnership Programme and many other projects. All of this, in general, is clearly incompatible with that what the politicians of entire regions manage to do today even with the joint efforts. Moreover, as a result of the systemic efforts of the Head of State, Astana, in terms of peacemaking, attracts attention of the whole world no less frequently as Geneva does.
The synergy of these projects in context of modern times greatly enhances the chances of humankind to successfully overcome the systemic problems of the present time and to tackle a trajectory of sustainable development. Only the EXPO-2017 world's first green exhibition held in Astana has become a symbol of triumph of the human mind and a call for global cooperation in the field of climate and future energy. But the uniqueness of EXPO in Astana is that this is the first time in history when the significant capacity of this exhibition platform has been revealed in updating and promoting of the global development trends rather than local ones. Moving the global dialogue on future energy to the EXPO-2017 platform, the President of Kazakhstan has thus brought the format of this exhibition to a new performance level as a world demonstration platform of green innovations. This key conclusion needs to be fully explained, justified and replicated as part of the planned "G-Global Platform" International Scientific and Practical Symposium.
- Serik Nugerbekovich, there is a growing mutual influence of the public and social forces of development in promotion of one or another policy. And we see it in many countries, including USA, EU, Japan and other states. How effectively is this capacity used in implementation of the G-Global Platform projects?
- Initiating the international projects, including the activities of the Eurasian Economic Club of Scientists, the Head of State, from the very beginning, counted on the effect of interaction of the state and public institutions of development in the course of their implementation. Today, a specific state body is assigned to each of these projects. For example, an arrangement and a conduct of the Astana Economic Forum is a responsibility of the Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan, the promotion of anti-nuclear movement and CICMA projects is performed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions is within the responsibility of the Senate of the Parliament of Kazakhstan. Obviously, they all do a lot of work, but the governments have limited possibilities as there is a broad field of competition among countries in the area of priorities. Social organizations in this sense have infinite possibilities. As the Head of State has emphasized, a wide range of progressive public plays an important role in implementation of the tasks of the G-Global Platform, the power of which is in consolidation. And we, as representatives of the social institutions that bring together a large part of the international scientific and practical community on our platform, also contribute to promotion and implementation of Kazakhstan's key initiatives and projects. For example, only as part of preparation and implementation of the EXPO-2017, we have conducted about 4,000 activities in total, including an interactive format, involving over 500 thousand people. About 200 activities among them were carried out in the foreign countries. Notably, all of this was performed without the budgetary resources, solely through the mechanisms of international partnership and cooperation.
- Well, the East is tricky. And here, as we know, if the mountain does not come to Mohammed, Mohammed will come to the mountain. I mean a capacity of the Silk Way, how can it be used to strengthen the international status of Astana?
- Next year is exactly five years from the date of the launch of the One Road, One Belt project. Therefore, the International Secretariat of G-Global proposes to hold, within the framework of the AEF, the International Conference "Global Silk Way" to present and discuss the Global Silk Way International Project, which would eventually unite the peoples living in the countries along the Silk Way. It will consist of several blocs, the first is the digital Silk Way, the second is a cultural space, the third is a science and an education, the fourth is sports, and the fifth and sixth blocks are women and youth. It is also a business that shall join in within a single platform and complete its tasks. From these thematic blocks, it is possible to develop the whole areas of productive cooperation, and implement specific projects. For example, in the field of cultural interaction there is the idea of creating a Silk Way International Theater in Astana, with the active use of sponsorship mechanisms. In doing so, the major private sponsors of the partner countries will be perpetuated in a theatrical gallery of honor, as is the practice throughout the world. In this theater, the partner countries will conduct their theatrical performances, arrange meetings and other cultural events during the year. But cultural interaction is not just theater. Therefore, the representatives of many other cultural spheres can find their points of interaction here.
- But is a content of the Silk Way project of not more economy than humanitarian?
- The point is that the notion itself of people's interaction in any area of development, whether economy, energy or finance, is, above all, a culture of relations. And our idea here is to start an active cross-cultural interchange in Astana, across the entire perimeter of cooperation of the countries within the framework of the One Road, One Belt project. In doing so, the important thing will be done - filling the One Road, One Belt international project with the cultural, human, scientific, educational, innovative and other contents necessary to bring peoples together in this initiative. Astana can take over the role of provider, agitator and popularizer of the Silk Way ideas, and become a platform for international, cultural and other diplomacy of the Silk Way countries.
- How are the Silk Way countries interested in it, particularly, China, India, Pakistan and Russia?
- There is a very large field of attraction for all countries here. For example, with the establishment of the Silk Way International Park in Astana, the digital leaders — India and China — could promote their cultural, historical and technological achievements in 3D format. The same could be done in this park by the innovative companies of other states. The Global Silk Way international project will bring together half of the world, and this is a global scale, taking into account the remaining half of the world integrated in other projects. In short, the Global Silk Way project is an enormous opportunity to advance the integration initiatives of business, social organizations, science, culture, etc., which are of benefit to all peoples and countries. Today, one such initiative is at a stage of implementation, this is the International Silk Road Academy of Sciences. As soon as we declared an idea of its establishment, the Chinese partners immediately supported us, and held several major thematic conferences on this subject in China within the framework of the Eurasian Economic Forum. Today, they are ready to finance the activities for its establishment and operation, as well as to provide annual grants to the scientific institutions of 25 countries that founded the Silk Road Academy of Sciences, working on efficient implementation of the One Road, One Belt project. Other integration institutions may also be established in the same way. In Astana, during the year, the forums, festivals, fairs, competitions and other events can be held to provide a powerful driver for development of the tourism industry, as well as to enhance investment, innovation, science and education capacity not only of our country but of all partner countries.
- In terms of economic synergy, can the Global Silk Way international project help to promote the newly established international centers of Astana - financial and technological ones?
- Undoubtedly, the Global Silk Way international project will enhance the capacity and a level of all the above projects.
For example, on the basis of the International Center for Development of Green Technologies, the International IT Park and the Astana Free Economic Zone, it is possible to create a Silk Way International Technology Park with a demonstration of the latest innovations of these countries on a permanent basis. But here we must not forget about the international funds for sustainable development with huge sums of money, more than 100 billion dollars, designed to promote green economy in the world, fight against poverty, social inequality, the problems of youth and women, technological and economic outsidering. Today, as we know, a large proportion of these funds supports the European and American projects. But why not to attract some of these funds to such international projects as the Global Silk Way and the G-Global Platform? In this process, we could rest on the first place of our country in the world where the Green-EXPO (Astana EXPO-2017) was held.
- Thank you for your answers.
Interviewed by Doszhan Nurgaliyev
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