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  • 07 April, 2021

  • 6 Min Read

Kazakhstan and India- Defence Minister Bilateral Talks

Kazakhstan and India- Defence Minister Bilateral Talks

Defence Minister of Kazakhstan visited India recently with a focus on boosting bilateral defence cooperation. Both countries share common interests of actively combating the threat of global terrorism and maintaining peace.

The meet will enable greater military to military contact and cooperation between Kazakhstan and India.

India – Kazakhstan Relations:

Relations between India and Kazakhstan are ancient and historical going back to more than 2000 years.

  • There has been a constant and regular flow of trade in goods and, more importantly, exchange of ideas and cultural influences.
  • The flow of Buddhism from India to Central Asia and Sufi ideas from Central Asia to India are two such examples.

Political Relations

  • India was one of the first countries to recognize the independence of Kazakhstan.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi participated in the 17th SCO Summit in Astana in 2017. India was admitted as a full member of the SCO during the Summit.
  • India and Kazakhstan actively cooperate under the aegis of Multilateral Fora including CICA, SCO and the UN organizations.
  • India has been a consistent supporter of Kazakhstan’s initiative on Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA) and is actively participating in the process.
  • Kazakhstan supports India’s permanent membership in an expanded UNSC and has extended its support for India’s non-permanent membership in 2021-22.
  • India supported Kazakhstan’s successful candidature for non-permanent membership of UNSC in 2017-18.

Defense cooperation

  • India and Kazakhstan have developed close collaboration in fighting religious terrorism an extremism, as well as in promoting regional security.
  • A joint memorandum signed in December 2002 enabled joint projects such as training military officers, developing joint military-industrial projects and establishing a partnership between the defense industries of India and Kazakhstan.
  • The Indo-Kazakh Defense Cooperation is carried out under the framework of an agreement on ‘Defense and Military Technical Cooperation’ signed in July 2015.
  • India has also provided support and emerged as a partner in Kazakhstan’s bid to develop a naval fleet in the Caspian Sea, despite opposition from Kazakhstan’s northern neighbor, Russia.
  • The two countries held the Prabal Dostyk joint military exercises in Kazakhstan in 2016 and the Himachal Pradesh region in 2017.

Trade And Economy Cooperation

  • Several Joint Working Groups have been established in the areas of Counter Terrorism, Trade & Economic Cooperation, Defense & Military Technical Cooperation, Information Technology, Hydrocarbons, Textiles, Tea Debt and Space Cooperation, Health and Transport, Connectivity & Logistics to take forward bilateral relations in the respective spheres.
  • The India-Kazakhstan Inter-Governmental Commission (IGC) established in 1993 is the apex bilateral institutional mechanism for developing trade, economic, scientific, technological, industrial and cultural cooperation between the two countries.
  • Kazakhstan is India’s largest trade and investment partner in Central Asia.

Space Cooperation

  • Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) launched “Al-Farabi-1”, a 1.7 kg Technology Demonstrator Nano Satellite.

Civil Nuclear Cooperation

  • Kazakhstan supported India in obtaining India-specific exemption to allow civil nuclear cooperation with Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) countries in 2008.

Significance of Kazakhstan to India

  • There are three factors which make Kazakhstan important for India.
    • First, its geo-strategic location;
    • Second, its economic potential, especially in terms of energy resources; and
    • Third, its multi-ethnic and secular structure.
  • Kazakhstan’s geo-political existence between Russia and Asia, along with long borders with China, makes it a country of great strategic importance.
  • Kazakhstan can also help India achieve a geostrategic rebalancing with China.
  • India’s foremost objective is countering the rapid economic inroads China is making in the region through the One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative.
  • Kazakhstan has become one of the key activists in the field of global nuclear security, and has achieved a number of results in peacekeeping policies and the resolution of conflicts around Nagorno-Karabakh, Iran, Ukraine and Syria.

Source: TH

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