Opinion: A BRICS Bank to Challenge the Bretton Woods System?

The formal opening of the BRICS Bank in Shanghai on Jul. 21 following the seventh summit of the world’s five leading emerging economies held recently in the Russian city of Ufa, demonstrates the speed with which an alternative global financial architecture is emerging.

Opinion: BRICS for Building a New World Order?

As the leaders of the BRICS five meet in the Russian city of Ufa for their annual summit Jul. 8–10, their agenda is likely to be dominated by economic and security concerns, triggered by the continuing economic crisis in the European Union and the security situation in the Middle East.

Opinion: Building Civil Service Excellence in the Post-2015 Development Agenda

This September, we usher in the post-2015 development agenda with a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agreed upon by Member States, with civil society participation, based on national, regional and global consultations.

Ruble’s Rout Breeds Uncertainty for Central Asian Migrants

Sardor Abdullayev, a construction worker from eastern Uzbekistan, had planned to go to Russia next spring to join relatives working construction sites in the Volga River city of Samara. But now, he says, “I am better off staying at home and driving a taxi.”

Kazakhstan’s Nazarbayev Signals U-Turn on Alternative Energy

From small villages to big cities, wherever you go in Kazakhstan these days, billboards offer reminders that Astana is gearing up to host Expo 2017, the next World’s Fair. Kazakhstan helped secure the right to host the event with a pledge to emphasise green energy alternatives. But now it appears that Kazakhstan is red-lighting its own green transition.

Central Asia Hurting as Russia’s Ruble Sinks

Pensioner Jyparkul Karaseyitova says she cannot afford meat anymore. At her local bazaar in Kyrgyzstan’s capital, Bishkek, the price for beef has jumped nine percent in the last six weeks. And she is not alone feeling the pain of rising inflation.

Karabakh Question Clouds Armenia’s Eurasian Union Accession

Armenia has finalised its accession to the Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union, an intended regional counterweight to the European Union. But while Armenian and Russian officials focus on future prosperity, some Armenian observers believe membership in the bloc could exacerbate Armenia’s security challenges.

Rattled by Russian Expansionism, Tashkent Looks East

Russia’s aggressive actions toward Ukraine are vexing Central Asian states.

OPINION: Why Kazakhstan Dismantled its Nuclear Arsenal

Today is the fifth observance of the International Day against Nuclear Tests.

Russians Blend Loyalty to Nazarbayev with Pro-Kremlin Sentiments

On a hillside in northeastern Kazakhstan, south of the Russian border, a simple and stark slogan looms over the city of Oskemen: “Kazakhstan,” reads the message in giant white letters arrayed across the green slope.

Ukraine Crisis Cements Astana in Russia’s Orbit

The Crimea crisis is putting pressure on Kazakhstan’s long-standing, multi-vectored foreign policy, which has sought to balance the competing interests of Russia, China and the United States in Central Asia.

Domestic Violence Rising on Kazakhstan’s Political Agenda

When banker Darkhan Botabayev tried to book a flight on Kazakhstan’s national airline last September, what started as a routine transaction turned into an assault that shocked the nation: Botabayev lost his temper and punched the young female ticket clerk in the face.

Kazakhstan’s Green Zone on Slippery Slope

A group of flashmobbers took to the slopes in southeastern Kazakhstan on a crisp March morning this year to spell out a heartfelt SOS with their bodies.

Theatre with a Political Edge in Kazakhstan

A group of villagers is held in thrall by omnipotent rulers, who warn that misfortune will befall the inhabitants if they defy authorities. And then, one day, the emperor is revealed to have no clothes.

Widening Social Divide Fuels Protest Mood in Kazakhstan

In the official narrative of Kazakhstan’s post-Soviet history, President Nursultan Nazarbayev is lauded for fostering widespread prosperity while maintaining inter-ethnic harmony.

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