KAZINFORM: What’s behind Kazakhstan chairing six international organizations in 2024

Country: Kazakhstan
KAZINFORM: What’s behind Kazakhstan chairing six international organizations in 2024
07 February 2024

In 2024, Kazakhstan is chairing six international organizations. It includes the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), the Organization of Turkic States (OTS), the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA), the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), the Islamic Organization for Food Security (IOFS) and International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea (IFAS). In this article, Kazinform News Agency explains Kazakhstan's priorities in these organizations and what it means for the country's foreign policy.

Food security - a growing concern

Kazakhstan initiated the establishment of the Islamic Organization for Food Security (IOFS).

Founded in 2013, IOFS is a 41-member international organization established to address food security challenges among member states of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

It aims to enhance agricultural productivity, improve food distribution systems, and promote cooperation in agricultural research and technology transfer among member countries. The organization also works to strengthen resilience to food crises, combat hunger, and provide assistance. For instance, in February 2023, under the IOFS, Kazakhstan sent 50 tons of humanitarian aid to Syria, which was hit hard by the powerful earthquake.

Addressing the sixth General Assembly of IOFS in Doha in October 2023, the Kazakh delegation has outlined proposals, including the development of transportation and logistics infrastructure and the formation of new routes for the delivery of food products, increasing investment cooperation, efficient use of water resources in agriculture, and active humanitarian assistance to those in need.

Strong diplomacy is key in geopolitical turmoil

Maintaining strong diplomacy remains crucial in geopolitical turmoil. It becomes even more important taking into account the fact that 2024 will be the year of elections in many countries.

The launch of the global electoral cycle in 2024 will become a central element of world politics and in such circumstances, the importance of diplomatic efforts to “build bridges” increases, said chief expert at the Kazakhstan Institute for Strategic Studies (KazISS) Miras Zhienbayev in a comment for this article.

"Kazakhstan assumes the chairmanship simultaneously in several fundamentally important international organizations, which will become a feature of Kazakh diplomacy. The history of our diplomacy demonstrates our practical commitment to the norms of international law and the institutionalization of multilateral cooperation," said Zhienbayev.

According to the expert, Astana has created a “space for equal dialogue and constructive interaction” on the widest range of topics, from cultural and humanitarian cooperation to security issues.

"Today, Kazakhstan is not just a member of a significant complex of international organizations, which form the backbone of the global governance system, but also an initiator of many regional and international initiatives. Today, our country maintains exceptional dynamics in its foreign policy activity, thereby creating important impulses and conditions for dialogue on strategically important issues," he said.

He believes Kazakhstan, as one of the middle powers, can make a significant contribution to laying the groundwork for more effective international cooperation aimed at preserving stability. He said the nation seeks to "ensure synergy in the potential of Kazakhstan's chairmanship in international organizations, the success of which will have systemic importance for transitioning from dialogue to rational actions on issues of common agendas and the future."

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