Ambassador Kairat Sarybay was appointed as Executive Director of the Secretariat of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measure in Asia (CICA) at the Special Meeting of the CICA Ministers of Foreign Affairs on September 24, 2020, and assumed his duties from the beginning of October of the same year. By the decision of the Sixth CICA Summit held on 12-13 October 2022 in Astana, the position of the Executive Director of the CICA Secretariat was renamed “Secretary General”.
Kairat Sarybay entered into the diplomatic service at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan in August 1991 and was appointed to various positions in the structural divisions of the central office and diplomatic missions abroad.
K.Sarybay as Head of Protocol Service of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan in 1996-1997 developed the new edition of the Presidential Decree "On State Protocol", later he served as the Press Secretary and Head of the Press Service of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan (1997-1998).
For the first time, Kairat Sarybay was appointed as Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan in 1998-1999.
From 1999 to 2003 K.Sarybay served as the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the Republic of Turkey, the youngest Kazakh Ambassador appointed abroad.
Serving as the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the Federal Republic of Germany in 2003-2007, Kairat Sarybay initiated the process which resulted in the adoption of the EU Strategy on Central Asia (2007).
Ambassador K.Sarybay as Deputy Foreign Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan in 2007-2008 was appointed as the National Coordinator for Interaction with the European Union and headed the government task force to develop "The Path to Europe" State Programme, approved by the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan – the key strategic document for priorities of Kazakhstan in the framework of the Chairmanship in the OSCE (2010).
Ambassador K.Sarybay served as Assistant to the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan on foreign policy issues in 2008-2010.
Ambassador K.Sarybay was the third time appointed as Deputy Foreign Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan from September 2010 to February 2014, and the main milestones of his activities are as follows:
- leading the task force in the development of the concept and implementation of it during the Chairmanship of Kazakhstan in the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in 2011-2012. It was during the 38th meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers in Astana (currently Nur-Sultan), Kazakhstan, in June 2011, that the historic decision to rename the Organization of the Islamic Conference to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation was reached;
- active participation in the efforts in the establishment of the Islamic Organization for Food Security headquartered in Astana (currently Nur-Sultan), Kazakhstan;
- preparation and convening of a Commemorative Session and 4th Ministerial Meeting of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) in Astana, Kazakhstan, in September 2012;
- leading the task force in preparation of the third meeting of the Ministerial Conference of the Istanbul Process on Afghanistan (Heart of Asia), which convened in Almaty, Kazakhstan, in April 2013;
- leading the delegation of Kazakhstan within the negotiation process on the legal status of the Caspian Sea in 2011-2013 resulting in a breakthrough between summits of "Caspian Five" in Baku (2010) and Astrakhan (2014);
- development of the "African dimension" of Kazakhstan's foreign policy in 2011-2013, resulting in the opening of the Embassies of Kazakhstan in Pretoria and Addis Ababa.
Before he was appointed the Executive Director of the CICA Secretariat, Kairat Sarybay served as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the Republic of Austria and Permanent Representative of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the International Organizations in Vienna since February 2014. He was also appointed as the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the Republic of Slovenia concurrently in August 2014.
At the position as the Ambassador of Kazakhstan to Austria K.Sarybay contributed to the development of effective inter-parliamentary dialogue, strengthening bilateral political and economic cooperation, and establishing network diplomacy. He successfully established an extensive network of Honorary Consuls of the Republic of Kazakhstan all over the federal states of Austria, except the capital city of Vienna.
As the Ambassador of Kazakhstan to Slovenia, K. Sarybay used to be one of the most active non-resident Ambassadors. During his tenure, Friendship Groups were established in both Parliaments of Kazakhstan and Slovenia, two Honorary Consulates of Kazakhstan were opened (in Maribor and Nova Gorica), and cooperation with Kazakh-Slovenian Business Club enhanced opportunities in building trade and economic relations. The story of Kazakh hero "Kasse Sebero", who fought and fell in a battle with fascism on the territory of modern Slovenia, reached a wide audience.
K.Sarybay acting as a Permanent Representative of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the International Organizations in Vienna was elected as a Co-Coordinator of the CTBT Article XIV in 2015-2017 (together with Japan), served as a Chair of the Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation in 2016-2017, Chairperson of the OSCE Economic and Environmental Committee in 2017-2019, Chair of the Nuclear Suppliers Group in 2019-2020. During his tenure, the project on the establishment of the IAEA Low-Enriched Uranium Bank in Kazakhstan was successfully completed.
Along with classical diplomatic methods, K.Sarybay introduces some art- and sport-related innovative approaches: around 50 musical concerts and cultural events were held in all regions of Austria and Slovenia within the framework of the "Pearls of Kazakhstan – Melodies of the Great Steppe" in 2015-2020, a continuation based on his experience of the same endeavor in Germany 2003-2007. “The Art Embassy of Kazakhstan” was inaugurated in Goriska Brda region/Slovenia, in 2017, within the framework of the Art Circle Project. The first Vienna Ball was organized in the capital of Kazakhstan in 2018. The Permanent Mission of Kazakhstan in Vienna has successfully organized “The OSCE Connectivity Bicycle Tour” three years in a row (in 2018-2020).
Ambassador Kairat Sarybay acts as an advocate for women's empowerment and raises awareness of the important influence men can have in ending gender-based violence and standing up against all kinds of inequality.
For his outstanding services K.Sarybay is awarded Orders of the Republic of Kazakhstan – “Parasat” (‘Nobility’), II degree “Dostyq” (‘Friendship’) and “Qurmet” (‘Honour’) and several state medals, as well as with the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany and the Karel Kramer Commemorative Medal of the Czech Republic and numerous awards of international organizations.
Mr. Sarybay has scientific and research background in Oriental Studies and linguistics. He is an author of books "Nursultan Nazarbayev, President of the Republic of Kazakhstan" (compiler), "Astana – The Music of Life" (editor-in-chief), "Kazakhstan: the Heart of Eurasia" (compiler and member of the editorial board), scientific and popular science articles on ancient Turkic languages, articles on relevant international policy issues, lectured as the visiting professor of Diplomatic Institute of the Academy of Civil Service of Kazakhstan.
Kairat Sarybay graduated from the Faculty of the Oriental Studies of the Leningrad State University (1988). His mother tongue is Kazakh and is also fluent in Russian, Turkish, English, and German.
Kairat Sarybay was born on 8 June 1966 in a family of scientist and music expert in Almaty/Kazakhstan.
Spouse – Dr. Leyla Makhat, Doctor of Art Science.
Four children and two grandchildren.