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Kazakhstan lawmakers see no reason to create Eurasian Parliament

10 december 2013, 16:38

Kazakhstan lawmakers see no sense in creating the Eurasian Parliament. Lawmakers from Nur Otan party, Ak Zhol party and Communist National Party of Kazakhstan have shared their opinions on the prospects of emergence of the Eurasian parliamentary institution with Tengrinews. 

Maulen Ashimbayev, member of Nur Otan party and Chairman of the Majilis Committee for Foreign Affairs, Defense and Security reminded that on numerous occasions Kazakhstan had stressed that the Eurasian Union was only an economic organization and nothing more.   

Maulen Ashimbayev. ©Danial Osakov

Maulen Ashimbayev. ©Danial Okasov

“The CIS (post soviet) space has already already got the mechanisms of inter-parliamentary cooperation that have proven themselves effective, such as the CIS Inter-Parliamentary Assembly, the EurAsEC Inter-Parliamentary Assembly and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Collective Security Treaty Organization. In our opinion, these organizations are sufficient,” said Mr. Ashimbayev.

He noted that Kazakhstan upholds equality, respect, national sovereignty and independence as the foundation principles of the Customs Union and the Common Economic Space. 

“We are against politicization of economic processes or conferring the future economic union with any functions beyond the economic integration,” stressed the lawmaker. He added that there were unresolved issues within the Customs Union and Common Economic Space, such as mutual access to the markets, tariff regulations and cases of limitations and seizure of goods. 

As for the Chairman of the Ak Zhol party Azat Peruashev, he believes that creation of the Eurasian Parliament would contradict Kazakhstan national interests.

“I am dead set against such suggestions, because it means transferring lawmaking functions to a supranational body. We agreed to create the Customs Union and the Common Economic Space wholly for economic reasons and for development of mutual trade. I believe that extending the interaction field and conferring it with political functions is not in our best interests,” said Mr. Peruashev.

Azat Peruashev. ©Marat Abilov

Azat Peruashev. ©Marat Abilov

“Today in the framework of the Customs Union we see many situations where resolution of certain mutual trade problems depends on the negotiators' skills, and it shouldn't be like that. We have our own historical, national, political and economic values, which we cannot compromise no matter what, ” said the lawmaker.

According to Mr. Peruashev, there are instances when the Eurasian Economic Commission “tries to take upon itself certain functions”. “Imagine what it is going to be like when there is a dedicated supranational lawmaking body. That's why I’m against the idea of such a Parliament. I believe it doesn't correspond with our national interests, ” noted Mr. Peruashev.

Chairman of the Parliamentary faction of the People's Communists Vladislav Kosarev supported his counterparts. “I unequivocally declare that we are against creation of any new Parliament, all the more the parliament of the Eurasian Union. After all, until now it was all about economic integration and creation of the Eurasian Economic Union. And now we are suggested a transition to a political integration. I think, no responsible political force in our country will support such proposal,” stated Mr. Kosarev.

Vladislav Kosarev. ©Marat Abilov

Vladislav Kosarev. ©Marat Abilov

Commenting the idea of creation of the Eurasian Economic Union Parliament a well-known Kazakhstan political analyst Yerlan Karin said that he doubted that the issue will be solved any time soon.

“I’m doubtful that such body would ever be created. Opinions and positions of the participating countries differ. Moscow and Astana have different approaches to integration. As far as I remember, Minsk holds a more or less neutral position in this regard. Minsk’s position is closely linked to Astana’s position: if Astana is not against it, they are not against it either; if Astana has doubts, they have doubts as well,” noted the expert.

Yerlan Karin

Yerlan Karin. ©Yaroslav Radlovskiy

The difference lies in the fact that Moscow tries to force integration processes, strives to simultaneously build up the economic cooperation and establish a political infrastructure of the Eurasian Economic Union, such as the Eurasian Parliament. 

While Kazakhstan, according to Mr. Karin, supports phased approach where it starts cooperation, builds up of the economic institutions and creates an economic basis. Only then the country is ready to consider moving to the new stage of political integration. 

“Moscow tries to follow the suit of the European Union and forcibly glue on certain political institutions such as the Eurasian Parliament and others. Naturally, they do not get the desired reaction and the difference in the approaches used remains, ” said the political analyst. He noticed that there were many unresolved issues, such as the absence of balance in trade and economic relations, even in the economic cooperation. 

“The question (of creation of the Eurasian Parliament) was gone from the agenda last year. And today this issue is nowhere high in the political or export agendas,” noted Mr. Karin.

On November 20, Igor Zotov,  Chairman of the Russian Pensioners' Party, addressed President of Russia Vladimir Putin with a suggestion of creating the Eurasian Parliament. Mr. Zotov said that he raised the issue with some of the political parties of Kazakhstan, Belarus and Armenia and they expressed readiness to sign the letter of intent. 

Igor Zotov. ©RIA Novosti

Igor Zotov. ©RIA Novosti

President Putin said that the issue had to be discussed with the provisional partners of the future Eurasian Union. 

“We too support the idea of creation of the Eurasian Parliament, but we have to agree on it with our partner, and it is not so simple. It is widely believed that we are not ready for it and it is a premature decision,” said the President. He added that he personally supports  the idea. “We will be doing it cautiously and coordinating our steps with the partners, ” added Mr. Putin.

Vladimir Putin. © RIA Novosti

Vladimir Putin. © RIA Novosti

The leaders of the Akzhol party and the the People's Communists party said that the Russian Pensioners' Party hadn't contacted them about the issu. Mr. Maulen Ashibayev of Nur Otan also said that as far as he knew, none of the Kazakhstan parliamentary parties had been conducting any negotiations on creation of the Eurasian Parliament. 

In September 2012, the former Advisory of the President of Kazakhstan Yermukhamet Yertysbayev said that discussions of creation of the Eurasian Parliament were premature. 

Yermukhamet Yertysbayev. ©Maxim Popov

Yermukhamet Yertysbayev. ©Maxim Popov

The ex-spokesman of the Senate Kairat Mami said in August 2012 that there was no clear format or outline of the future Eurasian Parliament. 

Kairat Mami. ©Yaroslav Radlovsky

Kairat Mami. ©Yaroslav Radlovsky

The Chairman of the State Duma (lower house) of Russia Sergei Naryshkin was the first person to suggest transforming the EurAsEC Inter-Parliamentary Assembly into the Eurasian Inter-Parliamentary Assembly and later into the Eurasian Parliament. 

Sergei Naryshkin. ©RIA Novosti

Sergei Naryshkin. ©RIA Novosti

By Renat Tashkinbayev



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