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Kazakh Senate Speaker says forums in Astana should not be a drain to state budget

03 october 2014, 17:30
0
Kassym-Jomart Tokayev ©REUTERS
Kassym-Jomart Tokayev ©REUTERS

Senate Speaker Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has called onto organizers of forums in Astana to economize and spend money prudently, Tengrinews correspondent reports.

The members of Kazakhstan's upper house were debating yesterday, October 2, whether they should adopt a law ratifying the Agreement between the Government of Kazakhstan and the UN about a Trust Fund for Technical Cooperation.

This document will allow holding “2014 UN Global Forum on Electronic Government” in Astana. Majority of the senators, including the Speaker of the House, agreed that holding various forums bore a heavy price tag.

"Our call and my plea to the government as the Chair of the Senate is that we must be selective in conducting international forums. In the end, it is necessary to save budget money,” Tokayev said.

“The relevance of the forum is not in doubt, but again, not for the triumphant reports but to really see where we have problems and what can be done about it," Tokayev stressed.

He said that cooperation with the UN was “necessary” but he knew "exactly how the decisions were made there: they are interested in having more forums in various countries, including developing and emerging countries”.

“This is why I think that generally we need, and I am not specifically talking about this particular forum but about all our forums, we need to keep this in mind. There are many forums," the Speaker said.

Vice-Minister for Investment and Development of Kazakhstan Askar Zhumagaliyev who presented the document made it clear that he shared the concerns of the deputies.

"I would like to say that holding this forum was declared upon just two years ago. The first forum had taken place in South Korea, a country where the e-government is most developed. The fact that we are holding the third forum is but a proof that our e-government is developing,” he said.

“This forum would not have been planned in Kazakhstan, had we not occupied the 28th place in United Nationas e-gov development ranking, had we not been able to provide annually more than 30 million e-government services. This year we have already provided 40 million services,” Zhumagaliyev claimed.

“The idea of this forum is to show the best practices for all countries and encourage developing countries to use them,” the Vice-Minister concluded.

The agreement was ratified after a long discussion. This means that “2014 UN Global Forum on Electronic Government” will be held in Astana on October 6-8. The outcome of the Forum is expected to popularize Kazakhstan’s experience in the development of e-government among developed and developing countries.

Reporting by Assel Satayeva, writing by Dinara Urazova


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