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Parliament • 01 February, 2019

Kazakh Parliament ratifies Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea

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The Minister of Foreign Affairs Beibut Atamkulov presented at the Senate plenary session a number of international treaties of the Republic of Kazakhstan, which were reviewed and ratified by the Chamber.

The first document submitted by the foreign minister was the Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea. The document was signed by the presidents of Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Russia and Turkmenistan in Aktau during the Fifth Caspian Summit on August 12, 2018. The purpose of the Convention is to identify and regulate the rights and obligations of the parties with respect to the use of the Caspian Sea, including its waters, seabed, subsoil, natural resources and airspace above the sea. The Convention regulates issues related to the delimitation of national zones, jurisdictions and sovereignty, the rights to subsoil use, transit and transportation, laying of underwater pipelines and cables, environmental protection and biological resources of the Caspian Sea. Special attention is paid to security issues in terms of countering modern challenges and threats, preventing and eliminating emergency situations, and dealing with military activities of the Caspian states.

“The presence in the Caspian sea of ships flying the flags of states not belonging to the Caspian five, as well as armed forces not belonging to the Caspian states, is not permitted. The maritime area is delimited by internal waters, 15 miles wide territorial waters. There are fishing zones of 10 nautical miles width and the common maritime space. The outer limits of the territorial waters have the status of maritime state borders,” the Minister stressed.

The Convention will enter into force on the date of receipt by Kazakhstan, the depositary , of the fifth instrument of ratification.

The Senate also ratified the Protocol amending the Treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union of May 29, 2014. The purpose of the Protocol is to amend paragraph 2 of Article 10 of the Charter Agreement for providing the possibility of joining the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council not only by the head of a member state, but also the head of government of a member state vested with the authority of the state to make decisions on matters within the competence of the SEEC.

The Agreement on international treaties of the EAEU with third states, international organizations or international integration associations has also been ratified. The agreement was signed by the heads of the EAEU member states during the summit in Sochi on May 14, 2018. The document defines the procedure for the conclusion, termination and suspension of international treaties with non-EAEU countries.

The agreement regulates the procedure for negotiating with third countries the powers and obligations of the head of the negotiating delegation, the mandatory coordination with Member States of draft documents containing the negotiating position and transferred to a third party. The Agreement contains mechanisms for monitoring the activities of negotiating teams acting on behalf of the EAEU and its member states in order to prevent the inclusion, in draft international treaties, of regulations beyond the scope of economic integration.

The adoption of this agreement is relevant in connection with the intensification of international cooperation of the EAEU and the negotiation process to conclude trade agreements between the EAEU and particular countries.

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