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A call for enhanced co-operation between the Council of Europe and Kazakhstan

“The Council of Europe must enhance co-operation with Kazakhstan to assist it on the path of transformation towards democratic governance,” said the PACE Standing Committee, meeting today in Copenhagen. While considering Kazakhstan as “one of the pillars of stability in the Euro-Asian region”, the parliamentarians felt that the pace of reform in the country had been slow and the political system remained highly centralised.

In adopting a resolution based on a report by Axel Fischer (Germany, EPP/CD), PACE encouraged the Kazakhstan authorities to make greater use of the expertise of the Council of Europe – particularly that of the Venice Commission – in the reform process and to accede to the Council of Europe conventions that are open to non-member States.

The parliamentarians added that the current co-operation under the “Neighbourhood Co-operation priorities for Kazakhstan” – focusing on reform of the justice system – should be extended to other key areas where the Council of Europe can make a meaningful contribution.

Lastly, the Standing Committee called on the Kazakh Parliament to make full use of the 2004 co-operation agreement with PACE and to participate more actively in the activities organised by the Assembly and its committees.