Open Central Asia #10 (spring.2012)
It’s hard to imagine that spring and Navruz approach, given the bouts of freezing cold, almost Siberian, weather that we have had thrust upon the UK. But the thoughts of Christmas celebrations here are now well and truly buried for another year as the days get longer and the countryside wakes from its winter hibernation and returns to bloom. A new year of course always brings new hopes and goals for people both personally and professionally. On January 16th, Kazakhstan passed a historic milestone – holding elections that brought about a pluralistic Parliament in which at least three parties are now represented. Despite deadly riots and protests in the run up to the elections, they passed calmly and orderly. Although some international observers criticized the elections the nascent beginnings of a promising democracy are being formed in Kazakhstan. Until these elections only one party has been represented in parliament, but for first time the second-place party was guaranteed seats in the chamber. The Central Election Commission announced in January that three parties met the 7 percent threshold required to enter the Majilis, Lower House of Parliament: The ruling Nur Otan gained nearly 81% of the votes followed by pro-business Ak Zhol and the Communist People’s Party with just over 7% of the vote each. We now wait eagerly to see the development of this new government in Kazakhstan. Away from the politics of Kazakhstan, this issue, the 10th of Open Central Asia, focuses on Navruz in the other countries of Central Asia as well as the welcome news of a ratings boost for Azerbaijan’s credit status. We also follow some of the countries’ preparations for London’s Olympic games – an important time for Central Asian countries to show their progress on sport’s world stage. Finally we have a few more personal impressions from visits to Tajikistan and Turkmenistan and catch up with all the events that have been happening here in the UK.
Open Central Asia #9 (winter.2012)
I had the pleasure of spending two weeks of my hard-earned holiday back in Central Asia as I completed a trip that I have been dreaming of for the last six years since I first set foot in the region. This time my challenge was the Pamir Highway (an account of which is contained within this issue) and if my account of the splendours of the region and the wondrous people doesn’t get your travel taste buds tingling for a trip, then I’ve failed to convey just how special the region is. Every time I visit Central Asia it is the people who truly amaze me with their kindness, knowledge and optimism.
Open Central Asia #8 (summer.2011)
CATBIG (Central Asia & Transcaucasus Business Information Group) was itself established just 5 years after independence, when the newly established British Embassies in the region saw the need for a forum whereby UK companies could exchange experiences of working in the region and also be briefed on the political, economic and commercial opportunities by our Embassies.
Open Central Asia #6 (fall.2010)
Open Central Asia is a quarterly magazine, published in the UK, which connects and highlight the links between Europe and Central Asia. It promotes the cultures, politics, events and communities of both regions and open a discussion and exchange of ideas between them to promote both business co-operation and tourist relations.
Open Central Asia #5 (summer.2010)
Interview with the Ambassador of Azerbaijan, H.E. Fakhraddin Gurbanov; Revolution in Kyrgyzstan: Postcard from Bishkek; Amudarya and Syrdarya- a source of life for all Central Asian countries; Expedition to the Tian Shan/
Open Central Asia.oca4 (spring.2010)
Water scarcity: A disaster in the making? Kazakhstan assume 2010 OSCE Chairmanship Interview with Lord Waverley
Open Central Asia.oca3 (winter.2009)
Exclusive Interview with Tajik Ambassador Central Asia Economic Outlook: Triumph of hope over reality? Student Life in the UK Revealed
Open Central Asia.oca2 (summer.2009)
Caspian Oil and Gas Industry Report. Central Asian Student Life in the UK. Interview: Hamid Ismailov. Life on the Jailoo
Open Central Asia.oca1 (spring.2009)
Realizing Central Asia’s strategic position.
Exploring Expat Life in Kyrgyzstan.
Building bridges: Samarkand and Oxford