Kazakhstan Institute for Strategic Studies

under the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan

The President's Address to the People of Kazakhstan

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KazISS Expert Speaks on Positive Implications of Political Reform in Kazakhstan

Chief Research Fellow at the KazISS under the President of Kazakhstan, Irina Chernykh shares her analysis of the political reform with the Kazinform, in particular the redistribution of the powers of the branches of government. Dr. Chernykh emphasized that the constitutional reforms in Kazakhstan are being undergone within the broader framework of the five institutional reforms and had been set up in the “100 Precise Steps” program launched by the President Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan in 2015.

"Today, Kazakhstan faces the task of comprehensive improvement of the governance system at all levels since the further development of the country depends on the quality of political decisions-making that would include conducting through preliminary analyses, pursuing competent information policy and securing effective implementation. In fact, the reforms are a logical continuation of a broader strategy of modernization of the entire political system and are aimed at further democratization and good governance of Kazakhstan”,  - said Dr. Chernykh.

"The main topic on the current agenda is the redistribution of powers between the legislative and executive branches and the transfer of some Presidential powers of to the Parliament and the Cabinet. Naturally, all these require appropriate amendments to the Constitution and a number of the other legislative acts”.

When analyzing the proposed amendments relating to the redistribution of powers, it is clear that there are in the light of the first and the fifth institutional reforms, which deal with the establishment of a modern, professional, transparent, and accountable state apparatus who would assume the responsibility for the implementation of a number of the state development programs. In this regard, the key is to transfer some of the Presidential powers to the Cabinet so that they would be able to tackle socio-economic processes in Kazakhstan, i. e. the power to adopt national development programs and supervise the work of certain executive bodies that are not part of the Cabinet. All these shall make the Cabinet directly involved in the full cycle of socio-economic management on the national scale: designing and adoption of state programs, their implementation and, finally the evaluation upon their completion.

Dr. Chernykh stressed that Constitutional reforms strengthen of the role of the Parliament of Kazakhstan in relation to the executive branch: now the Prime Minister and the Cabinet of Ministers are accountable not only to the President,but also to the Majilis. "The Parliament is increasingly powerful in terms of influencing the composition of the Cabinet. The Parliament is given the power to appoint the ministers except for those on the so-called strategic directions such as foreign policy, national security, and defense where the President retains the power of appointment. Moreover, “the role of Parliament in scrutiny the work of the regional executive bodies is also increasing”, - said Dr. Chernykh.

The KazISS expert emphasized the dynamism of the debate on the current constitutional reforms among the analytical and expert community; “not only Kazakhstan’s experts vigorously discuss the amendments, but in the neighboring countries the recent developments received a rather intensive coverage”.

The next task of vital importance – according to Dr. Chernykh – shall be an effective information campaign on the essence of the political changes and good feedback. “This is quite a difficult task to fulfill, but the goal is to receive and consider the maximum possible number of propositions from the ordinary citizen who would be involved into the process with their possible implementation as constitutional amendments. Kazakhstan prospects to "breakthrough" towards comprehensive modernization of its political system will, to a great extent, depend on how successfully and effectively the public debate will be conducted” - concluded Dr. Chernykh.

All rights reserved. For the full interview, please see the Inform.kz at http://www.inform.kz/ru/ekspert-kisi-rasskazala-o-preimuschestvah-provedeniya-politreformy-v-kazahstane_a2994204