By the fall of 2016, Kazakhstan appeared to have gained momentum in the international educational arena. For the first time, the country’s students earned an international top-10 by performance in math and science, according to the Trends in Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS). Kazakh eighth-graders demonstrated ability and knowledge comparable to their peers from countries like Russia, Canada, and Ireland, ranking higher than England, the United States, and Australia, with the latter very disappointed by this fact.
Kazakhstan’s tenure in the United Nations Security Council lasted from January 1, 2017 to December 31, 2018. The country was elected in 2016 to represent Asia, defeating Thailand for the spot. Kazakhstan obtained 113 votes and Thailand received 77 during the first round of voting; in the second round, Kazakhstan obtained 138 votes. As part of its tenure in the UNSC, Kazakhstan was president of the Security Council in January 2018, which was marked by a trip by President Nazarbayev to New York.