Academic journal article Journal of Sustainable Development

Russian-Kazakh Cooperation as a Factor in the Implementation of the Eurasian Idea

Academic journal article Journal of Sustainable Development

Russian-Kazakh Cooperation as a Factor in the Implementation of the Eurasian Idea

Article excerpt

Abstract

Conducted research is relevant due to the rapid development of integration processes at the post-Soviet space at the beginning of XXI century. The aim of the article is to analyze Russian and Kazakh collaboration as the driving force of Eurasian integration processes. The main method of the research of this issue is Eurasianism, through the prism of which Russian and Kazakh collaboration is under consideration. The results of the research prove the fact that Russia and Kazakhstan have lots of similar features and converging factors of geographic, historical, ethnic and confessional nature. The economics of the countries are inter-supplementary; their political approaches to the most global and regional issues are alike. In general Russia and Kazakhstan have not only good neighbourly and collaborating, but also inter-allied bilateral relations. This marks joint and active advance of Eurasian integration processes and the development of Eurasian idea in general. The materials of the article may be useful in conducting scientific research on the issues of external policies of Russia and Kazakhstan, providing lectures and seminars in training and planning specific measures on further advance of integration processes at the post-Soviet space.

Keywords: Eurasian idea, Russian Federation, Republic of Kazakhstan, integration processes, Collective Security Treaty Organization, Eurasian Economic Community, Customs Union, Common Economic Space, Eurasian Union

1. Introduction

21st century has brought new threats and challenges, as well as very high rates of political, economic and social processes. Now, under the conditions of the aggravation of economic competition and political pressure, only integration into larger international organizations allows individual states to improve their competitiveness and preserve the sovereignty, as well as to influence the decisions of the international community. For the countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), the integration with the neighboring states of the former Soviet Union is the most natural. The matter of such integration is not only about historical, economic, political, cultural and humanitarian background. CIS countries share common territory - Eurasia - in the terms expressed in the Eurasian idea.

Globally speaking, Eurasia is a huge continent, comprising about three-quarters of all human resources - demographic, energy, mineral, biological. At large, there are dozens of states and hundreds of peoples and cultures. However, from the perspective of Eurasian idea, Eurasia is approached as a part of the continent called the Heartland or Geographical Pivot of History by geopolitics, classical authors and scholars, starting with Halford Mackinder (Mackinder, 1996). In general, it coincides with the territory of the Russian Empire in the early 20th century.

Ii is interesting that the Eurasian idea is more popular among all the post-Soviet states, especially in Russia and Kazakhstan, which drive the development of Eurasian integration. Why is this happening?

Number of western researchers, mainly Americans, explains Kazakhstan's commitment to the idea of Eurasianism as a least-evil solution aimed at securing themselves from Russia. For instance, John Lepingwell explained one of the reasons of the Eurasian Union idea turned up in the administration of President N.A.Nazarbayev with the presence of Russian speaking majority in Kazakhstan and its geographic proximity to Russia. According to him, these factors left Kazakhstan president in a very difficult situation, forcing him on the one hand to seek closer ties with the northern neighbour and offer Eurasian Union, and on the other hand made him in every way avoid the issues of dual citizenship not to have his power eroded in the republic (Lepingwell, 1994).

Frederic Starr also concluded that Kazakhstan is burdened with ethnic and territorial issues with Russia (Starr, 1996). …

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