Economy news in brief

Some 8.1 million square metres of affordable housing will be introduced in Kazakhstan by 2020, Deputy Finance Minister Ardak Tengebaev said at a recent international conference “10 years of the Housing Construction Savings System in Kazakhstan: Results and Further Prospects.” The deputy finance minister also said the funds from the budget for provision of preferential loans were used for the implementation of “Affordable Housing – 2020” state programme. “The Kazakh government granted a 12.2 billion tenge loan to Zhilstroysberbank to provide loans to the participants of Affordable Housing state programme,” he said. The rates of housing construction in the last 10 years have increased sixfold, but the shortage of housing in the country remains, estimated at 23 million square metres. This leads to increase in house prices, which on the average increases by 1.2 percent annually.

A $60 million waste recycling plant will be built in the city of Pavlodar. The capacity of the plant will reach 70,000 tons of waste per year. The plant will be built within five years and its construction will be funded by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. In 2010, the Kazakhstan Ministry of Environmental Protection proposed to build waste recycling plants in Kazakhstan cities. Currently, cities in Kazakhstan lack modern integrated system for residue recycling.

It is too early to speak about the location of the fourth oil refinery in Kazakhstan, Minister of Oil and Gas Uzakbay Karabalin said at the Central Communications Service (CCS) Sept. 18 briefing. “Presently, three oil refinery plants are being renovated. Almost all of them are reequipped with the required systems necessary for producing products within EURO-4 and EURO-5 standards. Therefore, in future, these plants will be able to provide fuel of the modern quality. Moreover, these plants are really capable of meeting the needs of our country. Kazakhstan has really big plants regarding industrial and innovative projects and it is also forecast that the capacity of these plants might become insufficient along with the course of development of our economy in the future. Currently, the issues of construction of a new oil refinery are actively discussed, but it is too early to talk about any definite location for it. The selection of a place for construction of the plant is not easy because all the aspects such as the concentration of the consumption and transportation expenditures must be taken into account,” Karabalin said.

At the same CCS media briefing, Minister of Oil and Gas Uzakbay Karabalin spoke about the process of provision of gas to the central regions of Kazakhstan. “The process of designing the pipeline for gas supplies to Astana was completed in December last year. Presently, the negotiations on supply of gas from Russia are underway. The intergovernmental commission of Russia and Kazakhstan currently considers this issue. Besides, Gazprom, Kaztransgas and Kazmunaygas companies were charged to jointly discuss the issues of gas supplies, including the volumes, conditions and terms,” the Minister said.

Introduction of commercial invoices in the electronic format in Kazakhstan is planned to begin on July 1, 2014. However, the programme will be launched in a pilot mode on October 1, 2013. Samruk Kazyna companies and tax payers willing to take part in the pilot stage of the programme will participate in this phase of the programme, head of the Tax Committee of the Ministry of Finance of Kazakhstan Anuar Dzhumadildayev said at the CCS briefing in Astana. “We also study a method of a special deposit account of the value added tax. This method will allow to prevent using of fraudulent schemes in returning the value added taxes. Besides, we plan to introduce a principle of a required level of the ownership capital. One of the key moments will be general declaring of income and property of the citizens of Kazakhstan,” he said.