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Key events in Kazakhstan 2014: Overview

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Photo courtesy of senateshj.com.au Photo courtesy of senateshj.com.au

BNews.kz suggests looking at the key events in 2014.

One of the highlights of the political life of Kazakhstan was the agreement to create the Eurasian Economic Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan that was later joined by Armenia and is about to be joined by Kyrgyzstan. The EEU agreement came into force on January 1, 2015.

Nur Otan political party, the ruling party in Kazakhstan, adopted the Anticorruption Program for the 2015-2025 period.

In August, 2014, the Kazakhstani government underwent a massive reorganization. 17 ministries and 9 agencies were reorganized into 12 ministries and around 30 committees. In particular, the Financial Police was abolished. All the responsibilities the Financial Police were passed down to the Agency on Civil Service Affairs and Fight against Corruption. Also, the Ministry of Internal Affairs was made responsible for the area of work of the abolished Ministry of Emergency Situations. New Ministries such as the Ministry of Energy, the Ministry of Culture and Sports, the Ministry of Investments and Development and the Ministry of National Economy were established.

The February devaluation of the national currency - the tenge became one of the most important events in the economy of Kazakhstan in 2014. On February 11 the central bank of Kazakhstan pegged the new currency exchange rate to the milestone of 185 tenge per $1.

On November 11, President Nazarbayev delivered his Nurly Zhol – The Path to the Future speech. It was his second major address that year. It came as a response to the global challenges such as the global economic crisis and the fall of prices on raw materials - oil and metals in particular -  that had been decreasing revenues in the state budget. Measures that Nazarbayev emphasized in his address came into force on January 1, 2015.

Also, a new Law on Road Traffic was adopted in Kazakhstan in 2014. The law came into force on October 20, 2014. And in 2015, the new traffic rules that were revise along with the law will take effect.

As for the cultural life of Kazakhstan, a Kazakh singer Zhanar Dugalova won Turkvizyon in Kazan, Russia on November 21. Dugalova earned 225 points with her Izin Koren song.

In sports, after hosting the Universiade in 2017, Kazakhstan aims to be the host of the Winter Olympics in Almaty. It has spend the year 2014 moving forward with the bid. Almaty now has only one competitor left – Beijing. Stockholm, Krakow, Lvov and Oslo dropped their bids for the Winter Olympics in 2022. The host of the Olympic Games will be decided during the International Olympic Committee meeting in Kuala-Lumpur this summer.

2014 was fruitful for Kazakhstani athletes during the Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea. Kazakhstani national team showed the best results in the country’s history with the total of 84 medals (28 gold, 23 silver and 33 bronze). Young and no doubted extremely gifted swimmer Dmitry Balandin won three gold medals in 50, 100 and 200 meters. Olga Rypakova once again proved that she is the best in the track and field.

In November, Almaty hosted the World Weightlifting Championship where Kazakhstan won the third place in the overall medal count. Kazakhstani weightlifters got three gold and two silver medals. Ilya Iliyn, a world famous weightlifter from Kazakhstan, became the World Champion for the 4th time. This time he won in the -105 kg weight category. The Kyzylorda native snatched 190 kg and lifted 242 kg in the clean and jerk. Iliyn set the new world record in weightlifting.

Overall we had some ups and downs in the past year. Either way 2014 was a year that we can be happy we lived in or lived through.

By Gyuzel Kamalova

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