Independence Day of Kazakhstan is the main national holiday of the country
The 16th of December is the Independence Day of Kazakhstan, when the dream of our ancestors came true and our creativity reached a new level. An independence day is considered as an essential holiday that tells the story of the nation and represents its most significant values. This year marks the 29th anniversary of our independence, which began with the Constitutional Law signed by the First President, Elbasy Nursultan Nazarbayev on the 16th of December in 1991.
The date for the Independence Day of Kazakhstan has not been chosen by the chance. If we look back at the history, the USSR was collapsed in 1991, and the countries of the Union became the independent states. Kazakhstan was among them as well. On the 16th of December in 1991, the Supreme Soviet of Kazakhstan had adopted the Law “On Independence and State Sovereignty”. It should be noted that Kazakhstan had been the last country in the USSR to enact the Law on Independence. This Law, along with the Declaration of Independence of Kazakhstan, enacted on the 25th of October in 1990, strengthened the Republic of Kazakhstan.
Turkey has been the first country who officially acknowledged Kazakhstan`s Independence, then China was the second country, and the third one was United Kingdom. And then the countries like Mongolia, France, Japan, South Korea and Iran have acknowledged the independence as well. Iran was the first Muslim country who recognized the independence of Kazakhstan. We should also notice that the statement “A brotherly state of Turkey has been the first country who acknowledged our Independence” is not true. Turkey was the first country who opened an Embassy in Kazakhstan, but was considered as the seventeenth country who recognized our independence. This statement was made by Vyacheslav Gizzatov, one of the authors of the concept of foreign policy of the country, who served as the Deputy Foreign Minister after the independence. The diplomatic documents registered with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan approve the fact that Turkey signed a protocol on the official recognition of Kazakhstan's Independence on the 2nd of March, in 1992. In the early days it was acknowledged by the most important countries of the world, and later by other countries. Thus, the state of Kazakhstan has been slowly gaining ground in the arena of world politics. In just a few weeks, many influential countries of the world recognized the independence of Kazakhstan and began diplomatic relations.
On the Independence Day of Kazakhstan, various events are being held throughout the republic. A tradition to award outstanding citizens such as workers of culture, art, sports, politics has been already developed on the eve of the holiday. It is not unusual that “Holiday amnesties” are announced to people who have violated the law once (mainly for the unintentional and minor crimes, as well as the women and juvenile convicts). The festive events and concerts are held in many regions of the country. Also, the salutes and fireworks have become traditional in honor of gaining the independence.
The Republic of Kazakhstan is dynamically developing independent state. However, the country has underwent the significant large-scale government transformations within this period. A two-chamber Parliament has been established, a judicial system was created, and a new capital was announced as well. The Armed Forces, the Republican Guard, the Border Troops and the Navy have emerged more recently.
Today we live in a country with a developing market economy capable of integrating into the world economic system and the existing system of economy has been radically transformed too. Kazakhstan has become a leading state among the CIS and Eastern European countries in attracting a foreign investment. Also, the important reforms have been carried out in the social and pension spheres. Kazakhstan voluntarily renounced the use of nuclear weapons on its territory and declared itself as a country free of nuclear weapons.
An international policy of Kazakhstan is aimed at achieving international guarantees of the sovereignty and independence of our state. A lot of fruitful work has been done in order to establish friendly relations with foreign countries. Over 120 countries have officially recognized and established diplomatic relations with Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan is a full and active member of the UN, and it also strengthens cooperation with the most influential international organizations such as, the European Union, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the International Monetary Fund, IAEA, Red Cross, UNICEF and UNESCO. Kazakhstan has joined for more than 40 multilateral and 700 bilateral agreements and treaties.
Today we can surely say that Kazakhstan has become famous in the international arena and has taken a worthy place among the world's economic systems. During the years of Independence, Kazakhstan has turned into a state with developing economy and democratic foundations due to the policy of Elbasy – Nursultan Nazarbayev. Now, we would like to explore the most important milestones of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
Kazakhstan is among the safest countries in the nuclear safety rating. This was facilitated by the decree of the First President on the closure of Semipalatinsk nuclear test site on the 29th of August in 1991. The first test was carried out at the site on the 29th of August in 1949. More than 40 years later, on the same day a decree had been issued in order to close the landfill. 500 explosions, that caused damage to the health and lives of thousands of people, were made during this time.
On the initiative of Kazakhstan, the United Nation has declared the 29th of August as the Day of International Action against Nuclear Tests.
On the initiative of Elbasy, Nursultan Nazarbayev, the Assembly of People of Kazakhstan was created in 1995. Its goal is to ensure a social and political harmony in the country.
An idea of organizing had been announced at the forum of the peoples of Kazakhstan in 1992 for the first time. An Assembly was initially a consultative and advisory body under the President, then it was transformed into a constitutional body with a social-political status.
An authority of the organization is acknowledged internationally. A General Secretary of the UN, Kofi Annan, who visited our country, called Kazakhstan “An example of interethnic harmony, stable, sustainable development for other states”. According to him, “The diverse, ethnic, cultural, religious groups that make up a great nation can participate in the process of making important decisions that affect their lives due to the activities of the Assembly of Peoples of Kazakhstan”.
One of the main successes of Kazakhstan is the construction of the capital city – Nur-Sultan. A modern city, that became the hallmark of the country, has appeared in a short time. Already in 1999, the capital of Kazakhstan achieved the world recognition. The city has been awarded by the UNESCO award, in the nomination “City of Peace”. This award is awarded to the new cities of the planet that have achieved great results in social-economic, political and cultural development in a short time.
Today Nur-Sultan is not just an administrative center, but a symbol of the country's independence and development. The city has become a platform for the international, political and cultural events.
During the period of independence, the republic has become a member of the authoritative and influential international organizations. The UN, OSCE, OIC, SCO, CIS, EAEU, CES, CSTO, OECD are among them. Kazakhstan became the first country in the Central Asian region where the OSCE summit was held after a ten-year break. Its holding strengthened the authority of the country and the First President in the international arena. Also, congresses of leaders of world and traditional religions are held annually in the capital of Kazakhstan.
Since the admission of the First President, much attention is paid to sports section as well. Kazakhstani athletes have won over 60 Olympic awards over the 29 years. Gennady Golovkin, Dmitry Balandin, Eldos Smetov, Ilya Ilyin, Olga Rypakova, Alexander Vinokurov, Elizabeth Tursynbaeva and many others are among the successful Kazakhstani athletes. The main sporting event of the country during the period of independence was the holding of the Asian Winter Games in 2011. Representatives of about 30 countries took part in them. In 2012, Kazakhstan achieved unprecedented success at the London Olympics, winning seven gold medals and taking the 12th overall position in final medal standings.
According to the Global Report of the World Economic Forum, Kazakhstan entered the list of 50 competitive countries of the world in 2012. Back in the early 2000s, the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan had assigned a nationwide task to become one of the developed countries of the world. During this time, the volume of Gross Domestic Product increased 18 times, the income of the population increased nine times, and the poverty level was reduced 10 times.
In 2013, Almaty launched bid to host Winter Olympics in 2022. In the same year, Kazakhstan flanged its candidacy to become a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council in 2017-2018. Kazakhstan, Russia and Belarus have worked on a treaty, to be signed in 2014, establishing Eurasian Economic Union by the first of January in 2015.
In 2017, Kazakhstan became the first CIS country that hosted the International Specialized Exhibition “EXPO 2017”. 115 states and 22 international organizations took part in it. The exhibition was attended by about four million people, and half of the million people came from other countries.
In 2018, on the initiative of the First President, Nursultan Nazarbayev, Astana International Financial Centre started its job. English authority is functioned on its territory. The center has been established with the purpose to raise investment to the country.
Investigating the efforts and achievements of Kazakhstan, we can confidently state that the country has strategically chosen a correct path. Currently, Kazakhstan is rightfully considered as a regional leader and strives to take its rightful place among the 30 states with the most competitive economy.