Kazakhstan’s vision of the future is supported by UNDP and EU

May 26, 2016

25 May 2016 Astana – UN Assistant Secretary-General, UN Development Programme (UNDP) Assistant Administrator and Director of the Regional Bureau for Europe and CIS (RBEC), Cihan Sultanoglu, and the Head of the European Union Delegation to Kazakhstan Ambassador Traian Hristea were the key-note speakers at the conference “Green economy providing social innovation, economic diversification and environmental sustainability”, held during the Astana Economic Forum.

Kazakhstan adopted the concept of transition to the green economy in 2013 to seek the green drivers for economic growth, create more sustainable livelihoods for people and protect the environment. The concept is part of Kazakhstan’s aim to become one of 30 most developed nations by 2050. UNDP has provided support to Kazakhstan’s goals on greening its economy encapsulated in national strategies.

“We applaud Kazakhstan’s leadership’s foresight and vision to establish a sovereign wealth fund from its oil proceeds when the markets were favorable, which can catalyze the green growth initiatives in the country,” said Ms. Cihan Sultanoglu. “It is laudable that Kazakhstan has initiated a series of structural transformations aimed at creating a more diverse and stable economy. More importantly, these transformations could support a deeper integration of the SDGs [Sustainable Development Goals] into the national plans and policy frameworks. With the Presidential “100 concrete steps” programme and an aspiration to elevate the national economy to the OECD’s standards, a strong momentum exists and should be seized upon to deepen the economic diversification processes,” added Ms. Sultanoglu. 

The Sustainable Development Goals, introduced at the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit in September 2015, are aimed at ending poverty, fighting remaining inequalities and injustice, and tackling climate change by 2030. Promoting similar ideas UNDP and EU in Kazakhstan united their efforts in  implementation of the project  “Supporting Kazakhstan’s transition to a Green economy model”. The joint project aims to integrate “green” economy principles into water sector of Kazakhstan.

Meanwhile, the European Commission’s has adopted an ambitious new Circular Economy Package to help European businesses and consumers switch to an economy where the value of products, materials and resources is maintained for as long as possible and where waste generation is minimized. 

 “Of course, the challenge is huge. The circular economy involves a fundamental change. It really means re- thinking the way we design, the way we produce, consume and dispose of products. We want to unlock the potential for more re-use, re-manufacturing and recycling of products, and for that we need new solutions, sometimes unconventional business models, using modern communication tools,” said the Head of the European Union Delegation to Kazakhstan Ambassador Traian Hristea.

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