KAZAKHSTAN AND CHINA: THE PROBLEM OF TRANSBOUNDARY RIVERS

Malik AUGAN Tolganay ORMYSHEVA, Fatima KUKEEVA, Duman ZHEKENOV


Malik Augan, D.Sc. (Hist.), Professor, Department of International Relations and World Economy, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (Almaty, Republic of Kazakhstan)

Tolganay Ormysheva, MA (International Relations), Department of International Relations and World Economy, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (Almaty, Republic of Kazakhstan)

Fatima Kukeeva, D.Sc. (Hist.), Professor, Department of International Relations and World Economy, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (Almaty, Republic of Kazakhstan)

Duman Zhekenov, Ph.D., Department of International Relations and World Economy, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (Almaty, Republic of Kazakhstan)


ABSTRACT

About twenty rivers cross the Sino-Kazakh border, the biggest of them being the Ili and the Irtysh. For several years running, China has been steadily increasing water withdrawal, pushing Kazakhstan and the Russian part of Siberia towards an ecological disaster. This makes negotiations a must for both countries, yet Beijing prefers to talk separately to Moscow and Astana. In recent years, Kazakhstan and China have added more vigor to their cooperation on water-related issues: they have already signed a great number of agreements and set up workgroups and commissions, yet mutually acceptable solutions are nowhere in sight. In this paper we have assessed what has been done to move closer to water-related agreements and in which way the joint structures bring the sides closer to relatively rational use of water resources.


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