Economic news in brief

Chairman (Governor) of the National Bank Kairat Kelimbetov endorses the presence of international banks in Kazakhstan, Tengrinews.kz reported. During the 10th annual PR Forum in Almaty, Kelimbetov stated that the establishment of Almaty as the financial hub in the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) “does not mean domination of Kazakh banks in the former Soviet space. There is nothing wrong that global financial institutions are operating in Kazakhstan. For example, Sberbank in recent years has made a technological revolution. The bank, which is ranked among the top 20 global financial institutions, created a vision of the bank of the future,” Kelimbetov said, noting that the reforms that are now being introduced, primarily aimed at creating such a favourable climate and such unconditional requirements for banks that would ensure public confidence. Kelimbetov also noted that it is important for investment partners to trust each other and trust gradually builds up. “For example, Sberbank, during the recent financial crisis, has provided great support to the financial sector of [our] country. And we are very grateful for it,” said Kelimbetov.

“The openness for cooperation with other countries becomes a global trend these days,” Mazhilis (lower chamber of the Parliament) member Maulen Ashimbayev said at a June 5 media briefing at the Central Communication Service (CCS). If we analyse the current situation, we see that all countries work toward cooperation, development of trade and collaboration at regional and global levels and strive to be open for cooperation. If we carry out a global analysis, we will see that only a few countries in the world pursue the opposite policy and shut down cooperation, trade and the establishment of contacts with other countries. It is safe to say that such a way is a developmental dead end,” he said. Ashimbayev also noted that all the results achieved by Kazakhstan for over 23 years of independence in the economic and political spheres and in the sphere of security were reached thanks to the openness of our country. “We establish the EEU in order to maximise our effective cooperate with the other countries. The EEU is a part of Kazakhstan’s strategy,” Ashimbayev said.

The Samruk Kazyna National Welfare Fund plans to create 18,500 jobs as a result of56 investment projects in 2014-2016. “In 2014, it is planned to complete 16 projects worth $3 billion with the creation of about 9,000 jobs, in 2015-2016, 40 projects worth $23 billion with the creation of about 9,500 jobs,” the fund’s press service reported. Over the years from 2011 to 2013, the Samruk Kazyna group of companies put into service 29 projects worth $4.3 billion and created about 10,000 permanent jobs. Among those projects were the construction of the Moinak Hydro Power Plant, the Zhetygen-Korgas and Uzen-state border with Turkmenistan rail lines, a locomotives assembly plant, an electric locomotives plant, the production of photovoltaic modules and construction of a refinery. Currently, the investment portfolio of Samruk Kazyna includes 163 projects totaling $146 billion.

Speaking at a June 4 Central Communication Service (CCS) media briefing in Astana, member of the Senate (upper chamber of the Parliament) Vladimir Bobrov said that economic unions in the world have proven their efficiency. In the social sphere, according to him, the EEU will improve living standards for Kazakh people, provide limitless access to education and medical services and create new jobs, not only in Kazakhstan, but in any EEU country. Every citizen of Kazakhstan now also has all the necessary elements of freedom for business and personal development in the territories of the three countries. The advantages of the EEU are certain, he stressed.

Chairman of the National Bank of Kazakhstan Kairat Kelimbetov speaking at a June 2 media briefing denied the possibility that a devaluation of the national currency of Kazakhstan is expected. “No devaluation is expected. It is all speculation,” Kelimbetov said, answering questions from journalists. The head of the bank said that such rumours arise frequently in Kazakhstan. “Over the period from 2009 through 2014, such speculations arose 13 times a year,” he noted. Such rumours, according to him, are circulated by people trying to benefit from those rumours.

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