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Nursultan Nazarbayev: First President of Kazakhstan

Biographical background:

Birth date: July 6, 1940

Place of birth: Chemolgan, a rural town near Almaty

Parents: Abish (father) and Alzhan (mother), both worked in agriculture

Clan: Shaprashty, the Middle Zhuz


Working carrier:

1960 - finished Vocational Technical School No.22 in the Ukrainian city of Dniprodzerzhynsk

1967 - graduated from the Highest Technical Educational Institution at the Karaganada Metallurgic Works  

1960 – 1969 - worked at the Karaganda Metallurgical Works


Political path:

1969 – 1973 - the Party and Komsomol work in Temirtau of Karaganda region

1973 – 1977 - a secretary of the Communist Party Committee of the Karaganda Metallurgical Kombinat

1977 – 1979 -  secretary, and then second secretary of the Regional Committee of the Party in Karaganda

1979 – 1984 - secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Kazakhstan

1984 – 1989 - Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Kazakh SSR

1989 – 1991 - first secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Kazakhstan

February to April 1990 - Chairman of the Supreme Council of the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic



April 1990 – President of the Kazakh USSR

On December 1, 1991 the first national presidential elections were held where Nursultan Nazarbayev had been supported by 98.7 percent of electors.

On April 29, 1995 the powers of President Nursultan Nazarbayev have been prolonged till 2000 as a result of the national referendum.

On January 10, 1999 he was elected the President of Kazakhstan on the alternative basis with 79.78 per cent of electors.

On December 4, 2005 he was again elected President of Kazakhstan supported by 91.15 per cent of electors.

On June 14, 2010 the Constitutional Law of Kazakhstan No.289-IV “On Introduction of Amendments and Supplements to Certain Constitutional Laws of the Republic of Kazakhstan on the Issues of Improvement of the Legislation in the Field of Ensuring the Activity of the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan - the Leader of the Nation” came into force.

On April 3, 2011 he was again elected President of Kazakhstan supported by 95.5 per cent of electors.

Nursultan Nazarbayev, Kazakhstan's President in office, won a double-digit victory at the latest early elections of the head of state on April 26, 2015.

Nursultan Nazarbayev ruled the country for 30 consecutive years by winning 6 Presidential elections until his recent announcement to step down as President of Kazakhstan during a TV address to the people.


How world leaders react to the resignation

A day after the resignation, Nursultan Nazarbayev had phone conversations with the leaders of Russia, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and the Armenian PM. During a phone conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin, the two expressed to continue regular contacts in the future.

Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev was saddened by Nursultan Nazarbayev’s decision to step down as President of Kazakhstan.

The Uzbek leader called Nursultan Nazarbayev a “prominent politician” during a phone conversation. The leaders remain committed to continuing regular contacts in the future.

Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov marked the huge contribution of Nursultan Nazarbayev to the strengthening brotherly relations between the two nations, with two leaders expressed to continue regular contacts.

Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko mentioned the long-standing friendship with Nursultan Nazarbayev and good relations established between Kazakhstan and Belarus.

The leaders reaffirmed the commitment to continue regular contacts in the future.

Armenian PM Nikol Pashinyan underlined the crucial role of Nursultan Nazarbayev in developing the successful interaction between the two countries.

Russian PM Dmitry Medvedev expressed his view on the resignation, highlighting Nursultan Nazarbayev’s merits and contribution to the formation of modern Kazakhstan and his role in the international arena.

“Kazakhstan's first President Nursultan Nazarbayev has resigned. As a founder of modern Kazakhstan, he oversaw the creation of a dynamic economy and major reforms in all spheres of the country's life”, Russian PM Dmitry Medvedev’s repost on Twitter reads.

This followed by other two tweets:

“We all know Nursultan Nazarbayev as a pioneer of Eurasian integration. 25 years ago, he advanced the idea of establishing the Eurasian Economic Union, which is making significant progress in the interest of all its member states”, he tweeted.

Current Russian PM Dmitry Medvedev’s tweet outlines Nursultan Nazarbayev’s vision on Eurasian integration, that enhanced cooperation between former USSR countries. The Eurasian Economic Union is believed to be initiated by Nursultan Nazarbayev 25 years ago. The Union includes Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Russia and Kyrgyzstan. Seeking to join more countries, one of the goals is to enhance strong economic relations within the Union by creating an integrated single market, introducing free movement of goods, capital, services and people and providing for common policies in the macroeconomic sphere, transport, industry and agriculture, energy, foreign trade and investment, customs, technical regulation, competition and antitrust regulation.

“I highly value the work Nursultan Nazarbayev and I accomplished together, and it is with gratitude that I recall everything he has done to boost relations between Russia and Kazakhstan and strengthen the friendship between our countries”, he continued tweeting.

Russia and Kazakhstan are believed to be close friends as two countries share the longest land border in the world. The two countries are also connected with common history, with the countries greatly contributing to each other’s economies. 


Nursultan Nazarbayev’s national programs and global initiatives

Being President of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev started Startegy2050 aiming at joining Kazakhstan to the top 30 countries of the world by boosting its economy. A lot of other national programs are under way.

Nursultan Nazarbayev is well-known for the world with his large-scale initiatives: closure of the Semipalatinsk Nuclear Testing Site on August 29, 1991, thus turning down the fourth-large arsenal of nuclear weapons.

Another initiative is a Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions. First held in September 2003, the Congress brings together religious representatives from around the globe once in three years in Astana.

In December 2011 Nursultan Nazarbayev put forward a new communication platform - G-global, announced at a meeting dedicated to the 20th anniversary of independence of Kazakhstan. According to Nursultan Nazarbayev, the G-global platform should ensure fairness of global solutions.

Code of Conduct Towards Achieving World Free of Terrorism was another initiative of Nursultan Nazarbayev announced in September 2015 at the 70th UNGA session. On 29 September 2018 the Code was joined by foreign ministers and high-ranking officials of more than 70 states of the world at the UN Headquarters. The Code is primarily aims at giving impetus to the implementation of a wide range of international obligations on counterterrorism and establishment of a wide global collation for a terrorism-free world by 2045.

Adlet Seilkhanov

Also read:

Nursultan Nazarbayev steps down as President of Kazakhstan

Kassym-Jomart Tokayev is President of Kazakhstan

Statement by Government and National Bank on continuity of Kazakhstan-championed macroeconomic policy

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