Chaired by Maulen Ashimbayev, the final meeting of the Senate of the first session of the seventh convocation of the Parliament was held. It addressed the election of judges of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan. Senators unanimously supported the nomination of the President on the election of German Nurbayev, Yerbol Umraliyev, and Dana Tokmurzina to the posts of judges of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
Also, upon the proposal of the Chairman of the House, the candidacy of Nurlan Nurzhanov as a member of the Accounts Committee for Control over Execution of the Republican Budget was approved.
Along with this, in the course of the meeting, senators considered and passed some Laws aimed at further modernization of the national legislation and improving the lives of the people of Kazakhstan.
Specifically, the autonomy of rural, district, and city authorities will now be expanded. To this end, several types of taxes and payments, such as the single land tax, charges for land property use, proceeds from the sale of land plots, payments for the leasehold right to land plots, will be transferred to the fourth level of the budget. All these novelties are spelled out in the Law “On Making Amendments and Additions to Some Legislative Acts of the Republic of Kazakhstan on the Expansion of the Autonomy and Responsibility of the District, City and Rural Levels of Authorities”.
“The adopted Law grants new opportunities to the rural, district and city authorities for the prompt solution of challenges of local significance. It also expands the rights of deputies of newly elected maslikhats and improves the work of maslikhats as a whole. We hope that later on, these changes will give a new impetus to the development of the regions,” Maulen Ashimbayev said.
The moratorium on the sale of agricultural lands will be extended until December 31, 2026. Leases will remain valid only for citizens of Kazakhstan and legal entities without foreign participation, whereas agricultural lands are forbidden for subleasing. These and some other norms are prescribed in the Law “On Making Amendments and Additions to Some Legislative Acts of the Republic of Kazakhstan on the Development of Land Relations”, which has been adopted by senators today. The Law was drafted to fulfill the order of the Head of State and based on the results of the Land Reform Commission.
“This Law envisages new norms on the sustainable and proper use of land. The moratorium on the application of the Land Code provisions for the transfer of agricultural land to the private ownership of citizens of Kazakhstan will be continued. The document also includes new norms regulating the use of grasslands and ensuring accessibility and transparency of information on land plots. All this is in full accordance with the national interests of the country,” the Senate Chairman emphasized.
With their decision, senators also raised the level of protection of the rights of those Kazakhstanis who work in a remote mode. The Law “On Making Amendments and Additions to the Labor Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan on the Improvement of the Legal Regulation of Remote Work”, which has been adopted today, provides the most essential nuances of this work mode. Now, employees are allowed to switch to remote work mode by agreement with the employer. In this case, the employer must provide its remote-working employees with the necessary equipment, information facilities, communication services, and other means. If the employee carries out the amount of work, as specified in the employment contract, the salary for the remote work should be paid in full. The remarkable thing is that that this Law was initiated by the Parliament deputies, given its high social importance.
“Remote work has become a global trend. Certainly, the pandemic has influenced it as well. The lack of adequate legislative regulation when citizens switch to remote work has led to some problems in the employment relationship area. This Law aims to regulate these issues and expand the legal framework of remote work,” Maulen Ashimbayev noted.
Also, another Law was adopted today, which was earlier initiated by deputies, to enhance the protection of the rights of Kazakhstan citizens. Its primary objectives are to protect the rights of citizens and entrepreneurs against illegal actions of government agencies. So, under the bill, criminal liability for the facts of raiding against entrepreneurs is toughened, and the period for consideration of complaints of businesses and citizens for unsanctioned inspections, searches, etc. is reduced to three days. Furthermore, the Law “On Making Amendments and Additions to Some Legislative Acts of the Republic of Kazakhstan on Strengthening the Fight against Raiding, Protection of Business from Illegal Interference by Government Agencies and Officials and Intensifying Measures to Prevent Illegal Traffic in Precious Metals” sets forth norms to strengthen measures against illegal trafficking in precious metals.
To protect the labor rights of citizens, there is also the Law “On Making Amendments and Additions to the Code of the Republic of Kazakhstan on Administrative Offenses”, initiated by deputies of the Parliament and adopted by senators. The innovations in the Law include the introduction of administrative liability for the employer’s discrimination in the field of labor. Additionally, liability for failure to execute the prosecutor’s orders is envisaged. This provision is crucial to protect entrepreneurs against possible illegal actions on the part of government agencies.
Thereby, during today’s session of the House, senators adopted five important laws, three of which were initiated by deputies themselves.
Summing up the results of the Senate for the session, Maulen Ashimbayev stressed that, over the past period, deputies initiated and adopted a number of critical laws.
“Over the first session, deputies have accomplished much work on the legislative support of the modernization agenda of the Head of State. The Parliament passed 63 laws. Fifteen of them were initiated by the deputy corps. Besides, at the initiative of deputies of the Senate, the work on 14 more bills is underway,” the Senate speaker said.
Due to the lawmaking activity of deputies during the first session of the seventh convocation, a big bundle of laws was adopted, aimed at improving the welfare of citizens, settling land issues, upgrading the electoral process, developing local self-government, and the judicial and law enforcement system, supporting SMEs, social entrepreneurship and inclusive education.
“As part of the trips of senators to the regions, they held about three hundred meetings with the population and labor collectives. As well, in the framework of 3 Government Hours, 5 retreat sessions, 40 round tables, and meetings held by the Standing Committees of the Senate, the progress of execution of instructions of the state leadership, laws, and government programs were reviewed in detail. The recommendations adopted at these events were forwarded to the appropriate government agencies, and the progress of their implementation is constantly monitored by deputies of the Senate,” the Chairman of the House noted.
Beyond that, Maulen Ashimbayev pointed out that during the session, deputies of the Senate made a lot of work to promote national values. They held a series of parliamentary hearings and roundtables dedicated to these topics. Also, under the instruction of the President, a unique collection of documents “Asharshylyk. Hunger. 1928-1934. Documentary chronicle” was prepared and presented. The three-volume edition was sent to the stocks of archives and libraries of the country, higher education institutions, and educational organizations.
In closing the session, Maulen Ashimbayev mentioned that the activity of the House in the session was aimed at quality legislative support of comprehensive reforms of the President. The Senate Speaker commended all the deputies for their proactive efforts in implementing the constitutional powers of the House, and also wished them a successful and effective work during the parliamentary recess when senators will travel to the regions for meetings with the population, explore the problems occurring at the local level, as well as prepare suggestions that will be the basis for further activities of senators.
(Press Office of the Senate, 74-72-27. Photo by E. Ukibayev, N. Baibulin)