In terms of international relationships, the next decade may turn out to be for Kazakhstan more complex and unpredictable then the first thirty years of its existence as an independent state. The reason lies in the sharply growing animosity not just between the US/the West and Russia but between the West and China as well.
In our opinion, these relationships are nothing but a war albeit without a direct use of weaponry. And at the time of a war, as we all know, all means of tactical activity can be employed.
Under these circumstances, Kazakhstan as the biggest (territory-wise) state located in the centre of the Eurasian space right between Russia, China and Iran (in other words, the three states that openly oppose the US and are not going to succumb to the threats of Donald Trump and his Administration) is doomed to have issues with the White House.
There can be no doubt that the US will continue its policy under any administration, the Democratic and the Republican one as well. Of course, the range of the means and the severity of their usage will be different depending on who wins the next US presidential election, and not just in 2020 but further on.
In our opinion, to Akorda and the Library, it is of vital importance that Democrat Joe Biden wins the election in the fall.
Why do we think so?
We are certain that Mr. Biden and his Administration will act against their external political enemies with the same kind of perseverance and passion as Trump and his team, but they will definitely have no desire to pull the rug from under the former US Democratic Presidents.
The thing is that these former Presidents and Kazakhstan are tied together by certain operations of more than a sensitive nature. We are not saying that the Presidents participated in them directly and received profits from them but they did, at the very least, close their eyes to the dealings of the closest relatives of the First President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev.
As an example of such operations, one can recall the Uranium One case or the sale of the Kazakh oil producing companies to big Chinese oil and gas corporations listed at the US stock exchanges. In the course of these operations, Timur Kulibayev had received several billions of dollars as a commission fee from the buyers (this is a topic of a different conversation — kz.expert).
It is these cases that Donald Trump and his Administration may use to exert the direct and indirect pressure on Akorda, the Library bad Kazakhstan’s several key oligarchs as well. For the White House is already using the Ukrainian case in its internal political fight against Joe Biden and its external political fight against Russia. And it does use the Uighur case in the war against China. So nothing proclaims the White House from imposing sanctions against Kazakh legal and physical bodies as well as against the offshore structures controlled by Kazakh citizens around the globe.
Obviously, on the geopolitical and regional level, the effectiveness of the political pressure and the sanctions will be balanced out by the counter-pressure on the part of China and Russia. However, several people may fall (and we believe will fall) a victim of these interstate fightings. The question is who these people will be.
In theory, practically all the Kazakh oligarchs may get in the White House’s line of fire. Simply because all the large-scale embezzlements of Kazakhstan’s state resources and assets conducted as part of all kinds of privatisation and investment transactions were done in US dollars, in other words, via the US system of interbank payments.
Therefore, the US authorities, provided they have certain desire and the will to act as well as the clues what to look for and where to look for it (and the number of those involved in the case is growing), may collect enough compromising materials in order to whip Akorda and the Library into shape the way they see fit.
With that, let us repeat, the likelihood of such development is much higher if Republican Donald Trump wins the fall election and lower if Democrat Joe Biden wins it.