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Known as world’s largest landlocked country, Kazakhstan has a population of 17.5 million inhabitants with the per capita income $10,510 (World Bank). It is a middle income country with the Committee Administrative Police of the Interior Ministry as its lead Road Safety agency. 

WHO reports an annual number of 3,983 road traffic fatalities and according to the Statistics Agency of the Republic of Kazakhstan, 61% of deaths are suffered by four-wheeled vehicles drivers. Although Kazakhstan is known to have the highest road traffic fatality rate in the region, a downward trend has been reported by Committee Administrative Police since 2008. Kazakhstan is a contracting party to all six UN Road Safety Conventions, however implementation of the conventions needs to be strengthened.  According to the WHO data, strong seat-belt law is in effect, yet laws addressing other top risk factors (drink driving, speed, child seats, and helmets) need further improvement, especially drink-driving. 

On 14-16 September, the Special Envoy met with the following stakeholders in Almaty and Astana: 

Mr. Bauyrzhan Baibek, Mayor of Almaty

The Special Envoy provided an overview of his mandate and the global efforts to improve road safety, including the five pillars of the Decade of Action for Road Safety and targets 3.6 and 11.2 of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. He noted significant improvement in the city and country and applauded Mayor’s vision of a truly sustainable transport and mobility system in the city. The Special Envoy encouraged the Mayor to connect with his peers globally, specifically regarding the Vision Zero campaign which has been implemented in cities around the world– from Mexico City to New York City to Stockholm. The Special Envoy also recognized the Mayor’s efforts to address the top risk factors for road traffic injuries and fatalities, including child restraints, speeding and drink-driving.  

Mr. Zhanibek Kassymbek, Minister for Investment and Development of Kazakhstan 

The Special Envoy presented his role and mandate as Special Envoy and introduced the objectives of the Decade of Action for Road Safety plan with its five pillars.  The Special Envoy highlighted Kazakhstan’s strong road safety foundation with its public transport system in the major cities, new infrastructure, and policies that would enable the country to reach a new level of safe transport and mobility.  The Minister and the Special Envoy agreed that implementation of the Conventions and enforcement of laws transposing their contents will be critical to curbing the high number of fatalities in the country. Post-crash response and care as well as road safety data management are also opportunities that were discussed to improve road safety.

Mr. Asset Issekeshev, Mayor of Astana

The Special Envoy provided an overview of his mandate and the global efforts to improve road safety, including the five pillars of the Decade of Action for Road Safety and targets 3.6 and 11.2 of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. He applauded improvements in the city and encouraged the Mayor to connect with his peers globally, specifically regarding the Vision Zero campaign that has been implemented in cities around the world – from Mexico City to New York City to Stockholm. 

Mr. Askar Mamin, First Deputy Prime Minister

The Special Envoy presented his role and mandate as Special Envoy and introduced the objectives of the Decade of Action for Road Safety plan with its five pillars. He noted that the country suffers from the highest road traffic fatality in the region and encouraged implementation of the Conventions and enforcement of laws transposing their contents. Strong legislative and enforcement framework will be critical to curbing the high number of fatalities.   

United Nations Country Team of Kazakhstan

The Special Envoy provided an overview of his mandate and global efforts to improve road safety, including the five pillars of the Decade of Action for Road Safety and targets 3.6 and 11.2 of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. The UN country team provided overview of its efforts and issues in the country. The following members of the Kazakhstan UN Country Team participated in the meeting:

•   Mr. Yuri Oksamitniy, RC a.i., UNICEF Representative in Kazakhstan

•   Mr. Valstimil Samek, DPI Representative

•   Ms. Bakhit Abdildina, UNRCCA Representative in Kazakhstan 

•   Ms. Elvira Mynbayeva, UNESCAP, Head of Office a.i.

•   Mr. Abdurahim Muhidov, UNOCHA Humanitarian Affairs Officer

•   Ms. Damelya Aitkhozhina, UN Women Programme Officer

•   Mr. Marat Zarifov, UNHCR Snr. Regional Programme Officer

•   Ms. Tatiana Ten, UNICEF Emergency/DRR Specialist, Regional Office for Central and Eastern Europe and CIS (CEE/CIS), Almaty Bureau

•   Ms. Tuya Altangerel, UNDP Deputy Representative 

•   Ms. Saltanat Yegeubayeva, WHO Senior National Programme Officer

•   Ms. Leila Duisekova, OHCHR Programme Officer