Kazakhstan became a member of the Organization of Islamic Conference in 1995. Cooperation with the Islamic world is one of the priorities of Kazakhstan’s foreign policy. Our country is considered by the Islamic World as the integral part of the Muslim community.

Since entering the OIC, Kazakhstan has gradually developed its interaction with the General Secretariat, subsidiary bodies and institutes of the Organization.

Kazakh delegations have participated in the biggest OIC events such as Summits (8th OIC Summit in December 1997 in Tehran, 9th OIC Summit in November 2000 in Doha, 10th OIC Summit in October 2003 in Putradjaya), Islamic Conferences of Foreign Ministers (since 24th ICFM in December1996 in Jakarta, until 33rd ICFM in June 2006 in Baku) as well as Annual Coordination Meetings of Foreign Ministers within frameworks of the UN General Assembly.

Further intensification of Kazakhstan’s relations with the Muslim countries meets long-term interests of our country mentioned in the Address of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan N.Nazarbayev to the People of Kazakhstan on March 1, 2006.

Kazakhstan as an multiethnic and multiconfessional state, fully supports the global process aimed at developing dialogue among civilizations and religions. Active participation of our country within the OIC as well as in the frameworks of other large regional and global organizations is becoming more important.

With regard to the increased importance of cultural and civilization dialogue, participants of the 32nd Islamic Conference of Foreign Ministers in Sanaa, Yemen in June 2005 supported Kazakhstan’s initiative on promoting inter-faith dialogue by convening the Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions.

Special importance is attached to cooperation with the Islamic Development Bank and other financial and consulting institutions and companies.

Implementation process of agreements earlier signed is under development. At present a number of projects either are implemented or to be implemented within the IDB frameworks. The IDB Program which includes several economic and infrastructure projects in Kazakhstan was developed for the period of 2003-2006:

  • Syzganov Institute – USD 10 mln;
  • Highway Gulshat – Karaganda – USD 10 mln;
  • Segment of the Osakarovka – Vishnevka Highway – USD 20 mln;
  • Assistance to Small and Medium Enterprises Development – USD 15 mln.

Development of cooperation with the OIC in educational, cultural-humanitarian, science and technology fields is also of importance. Close interaction with the Islamic Education, Science and Culture Organization (ISESCO) gives Kazakhstan opportunity for successful implementation of national projects such as preservation of cultural heritage monuments, exchange in language training and study of history, culture of Islamic Countries.

On September 9-11 2005 in Mekkah (Saudi Arabia) the Conference of Muslim Scholars and Thinkers was held with the participation of the Chairman of the Committee for Foreign Affairs, Defense and Security of the Senate of the Parliament of the Republic of Kazakhstan Zhabaikhan Abdildin. This activity was aimed at elaboration of recommendations and preparation of documents to be submitted to the Third Extraordinary Conference held in Mekkah on December 7-8 2005. Representatives of all 57 Member-States participated in this event convoked on the initiative of the King of Saudi Arabia Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

A ten-year Action Plan of the OIC was adopted during the Extraordinary Summit. Based on the proposals of the Kazakh delegation provisions on political, economic and financial assistance to countries affected by environmental disasters as well as on encouragement and stirring up of religious dialogue in the frameworks of dialogue among civilizations were included in the Action Plan. These issues provides the opportunity for effective promotion of the initiative of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan on facilitation of religious dialogue and rendering assistance to the regions of Kazakhstan affected by environmental disasters (the basin of the Aral Sea and Region Semipalatinsk Nuclear Testing site).

The 33rd Islamic Conference of Foreign Ministers held in June 2006 in Baku reiterated its support to the Resolution initiated by Kazakhstan “On the situation in the Regions of the Islamic world Affected by Environmental Disasters, in particularly in the basin of the Aral Sea and the Region of Semipalatinsk Region”. Participants unanimously supported the initiative of the President of Kazakhstan on convocation of the Second Congress of World and Traditional Religions.

Kazakhstan actively works in the field of development of inter-parliamentary cooperation within the OIC framework by participating in the activities of the OIC Parliamentary Union such as Conferences and Councils on a regular basis.

With the aim of enhancing and intensifying its cooperation with the OIC, Kazakhstan becomes more integrated in OIC inter-parliamentary relations. This demonstrates our aspiration to develop favourable and mutually beneficial relations with the Islamic countries. Kazakh parliamentarians took part in the 6th Conference of the Parliamentary Union of OIC on April 12-13, 2006 in Turkey.