Regionalization vs. Globalization

Regionalization vs. GlobalizationKIMEP Conference to discuss Customs Union, Islamic revival, other Central Asian issues

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

For more information contact Elmira Rayeva, kirc2012@kimep.kz

ALMATY, KAZAKHSTAN, 12 April 2012 – With the creation of the Customs Union and possibly an EU-like economic and political union between former Soviet republics, observers are wondering if Russia-led regionalization is replacing globalization as the primary impetus for Central Asia. What are the drivers behind Eurasian integration? What benefits can these projects bring to regional economies? What are the prospects and implications for the political systems and foreign policy orientations of Central Asian states?

The Islamic revival is becoming an increasingly important factor in social and political life of the region. Is it a feature of globalization? Can it contribute to strengthening of regional identity? Or will it breed intolerance and fragmentation of societies?

The security situation in Central Asia is becoming more and more complex. The looming withdrawal of NATO troops from Afghanistan, the unresolved water management problems, the growing socio-economic tensions and uncertainties with political succession and power transition create a considerable potential for instability in the region. Will Central Asian states be able to cooperate and generate a regional response to these challenges. Who can help them and how?

These and other issues relating to regionalization and globalization will be addressed by scholars, business leaders, journalists, NGOs, government leaders and others participating at the KIMEP International Research Conference on Thursday through Saturday, April 19-21.

This year’s Conference includes a round table, to be held on Friday late in the morning, on combating major-size economic and financial crime in the process of regional integration between former Soviet republics. The round table will be conducted by Dana Stevens, lecturer and instructor at KIMEP on transnational funding and finance, and Charles van der Leeuw, journalist, news analyst and author of the new book “Fugitive long-fingered gentry from the plains: banking fraud’s impact on economics and financials in Kazakhstan and beyond – the affair of BTA’s former management and affiliated cases”, which will be presented on the occasion.

Speakers will include one of the top Western experts on Central Asia and the Soviet republics, Dr. Martha Brill Olcott, who will speak at a banquet Thursday night. Dr. Olcott, a senior associate with the Carnegie Endowment, has written such works as Kazakhstan: Unfulfilled Promise (originally published in 2002 but rewritten in 2010), Central Asia’s Second Chance (2005), Getting It Wrong: Regional Cooperation and the Commonwealth of Independent States (1999), Russia After Communism (1999) and Preventing New Afghanistans: A Regional Strategy for Reconstruction (2001).

Participants at the free conference can attend any of over 250 speeches, panel discussions, professional reports, and academic research papers in the fields of communications, business and taxation, law, social science, humanities, education, literature and linguistics.

Other featured speakers include Lan Wu, Asian Development Bank; Jose Luiz Gaviao, Visor Capital; Dr. Nicholas Baigent, London School of Economics; and Dr. Tyrone Adams, academic vice president of KIMEP.

Presenters and panelists will also include Vlastimil Samek, UN Information Office; Yegor Volovik, UNDP BRC; Simon Sargsyan, UNESCO; Tristram Perry, U.S. Consulate; Erzhan Suleimenov, Khabar; Marianna Gurina, KTK; Shokan Muratuly, entertainer; and Assel Karaulova, Kazakhstan Press Club.

All sessions will be held at KIMEP University. For more information contact kirc2012@kimep.kz.

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