Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program
Silk Road Paper
The COVID-19 crisis represents not only an unprecedented economic disruption but also an opportunity for Central Asia. A specific economic policy response may trigger either game-changing reforms that can facilitate the development of full-fledged market institutions or lead to a protracted crisis that would jeopardize almost 30-year long market economy transition progress. As it is rather unclear where the recovery pendulum will make its final swing, the current situation provides fruitful soil for various assumptions. This paper proposes and examines four scenarios of economic response strategies for the region as a whole, and for Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan in particular, that result in unique development trajectories. The paper employs the foresight methodology to build four scenarios related to the situation after the lockdown is fully lifted. The scenarios serve the purpose of helping decision makers to embark on informed decisions while shaping anti-crisis measures and better understand causality mechanisms behind their policy choices.
Scenario 1 (Protectionist Autarky): Stability upheld, limited reforms, increased role of the state and protectionism.
Scenario 2 (Impactful Diversification): Increased social support, augmented role of the private sector, comprehensive diversification and enhanced regionalization.
Scenario 3 (Inertial Asymmetry): Selective support measures, inequality-conducive, restricted diversification and limited reforms, “business-as-usual” commodity market, growing regionalization.
Scenario 4 (Unleashed Bazaar): Major institutional reforms, FDI-oriented economic openness, leapfrogging from stagnant to advanced emerging markets.
H.E. Yerzhan Ashikbayev, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan
Ambassador Bolat Nurgaliyev, Deputy Chairman of Foreign Policy Research Institute
S. Frederick Starr, Chairman, Central Asia-Caucasus Institute at AFPC
Svante Cornell, Director, Central Asia-Caucasus Institute
When: Wednesday, July 8, 2020 at 10am EDT
In lieu of our in-person annual gathering, the CAMCA Regional Forum organizers are hosting a virtual e-CAMCA Week.
The June 2020 CAMCA Forum, to be held in Almaty, Kazakhstan, was postponed until June 2021. In its place, CACI and the Rumsfeld Foundation organized the e-CAMCA week of online events and publication. Find recordings of the e-CAMCA Week virtual events held over June 15th-19th at the CAMCA Forum YouTube Channel, as well a variety of original #CAMCAweek publications and resources for our CAMCA Forum community at www.camcaforum.org,.
E-CAMCA WEEK PUBLICATIONS
Meet CAMCA Entrepreneurs
"Caucasus & Central Asia Post COVID-19" Series- Volume I
The Strasbourg Policy Centre's Series brings together statesmen and scholars that reflect on how the current pandemic affects the economy and power distribution in the region bridging the Atlantic and the Pacific economies
Digital Transformation in the CAMCA Region
A jointly authored article by two CAMCA Network members - Mariam Lashkhi, Deputy Chairperson of Georgia’s Innovation & Technology Agency, and Talant Sultanov, Co-Founder of the Internet Society-Kyrgyz Chapter
Post COVID-19: Challeges & Opportunities for the Region
A comprehensive collection of brief commentaries on the short and long-term impacts – economic, political and social – of the COVID-19 pandemic on the CAMCA region. Contributors to this unique publication include more than 20 experts and professionals from over 10 countries representing think tanks, business, academia, government and more. Read these wide-ranging perspectives, including insights directly from the region, curated for our CAMCA Forum community.
This event marked the publication of two Silk Road Papers on the state-religion relationships in Central Asia, a study of Kyrgyzstan by Johan Engvall and one on Turkmenistan by Victoria Clement. This forms part of the ongoing research effort on secular governance, religion and politics at the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program Joint Center, and follows the publication of studies on Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.
Johan Engvall’s study of Kyrgyzstan’s experience is timely given that country’s experience, starting with a more permissive atmosphere that subsequently aligned itself with policies in the rest of the region. Victoria Clement’s study of Turkmenistan is the first treatment of the subject to appear in print, and sheds light on the similarities of Turkmenistan’s approach with the rest of Central Asia as well as its specificities.
Victoria Clement, Eurasia Regional Analyst, Center For Advanced Operational Culture Learning, Marine Corps University
Johan Engvall, Senior Research Fellow, Foreign Policy Research Institute
Moderator: Svante E. Cornell, Director, Central Asia-Caucasus Institute at AFPC
When: Monday, June 15, 2020 at 10am EDT
The Event was live-streamed on our Facebook page and is available on our YouTube page and here.
On June 26, CACI Director, Dr. Svante E. Cornell discussed the recent e-CAMCA (Central Asia, Mongolia, Caucasus, Afghanistan) regional conference organized by CACI and the Rumsfeld Foundation, the region's response to COVID-19, progress with political and economic reforms, risks and opportunities for regional states with regard to China-U.S.-Russia competition in the region.
Listen to the extended interview with a q&a session: https://bit.ly/3g0nqk5
Watch the recording of the interview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yPBMeP0yZGA