Business News in Brief

  • The export potential of Kazakhstan in the 2014-2015 marketing years is estimated at nine million tonnes of grain, Chairman of the Committee of the State Inspection in the Agricultural Sector of the Kazakh Ministry of Agriculture Saktash Khassenov announced Aug. 8 at a briefing on the issues of harvest. “The expected gross grain harvest is about 17 million tonnes and carryover, four million tonnes; that is, we have 8-9 million tonnes of grain for export,” he said. Khassenov noted that the markets for Kazakh grain remain the same —the countries of Central Asia, Azerbaijan and Iran. In addition, there is an agreement on enhancing exports to China and transit to Southeast Asia. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, 759,000 tonnes of grain have already been harvested in Kazakhstan this year.
  • Funds allocated under the first tranche of the National Fund of Kazakhstan to support small and medium enterprises (SMEs) will be disbursed before Sept. 1, Chairman of the Board of the Kazakh National Chamber of Entrepreneurs Ablai Myrzakhmetov said at an Aug. 7 media briefing in the Central Communications Service (CCS). “One hundred billion tenge (US$549.6 million) or roughly about half of the amount has been granted and 76 projects have been approved, almost all of which have been implemented. The first tranche will be disbursed in full in September. This is a major help for SMEs at 6 percent per annum for ten years,” he said. According to Myrzakhmetov, part of the allocated funds will be spent on infrastructure of special economic zones. On the instruction of Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev, one trillion tenge (US$5.5 billion) will be allocated in 2014-2015 in the form of long-term loans for the Kazakh economy. In May, Kazakh second-tier banks started to use funds allocated from the National Fund within the framework of the joint action plan of the government and National Bank to financeprojects of small and medium-sized businesses in the manufacturing industry.
  • The state duty is to create conditions for business development, not to compete with business and the key reasoning   of the second wave of privatisation is to support private business through reduction of the number of state enterprises, Deputy Minister of Economy and Budget Planning Marat Kussainov said at the Aug. 4 Central Communications Service (CCS) media briefing. “The government approved the complex privatisation plan for 2014-2016 on March 31. This plan contains measures on the reduction of the state participation in business operations,” he said. Besides, according to the deputy minister, the list of companies subjected to privatisation, including community property companies, was approved as well. According to Kussainov, the analysis of people’s questions regarding the second wave of privatisation shows that people can be divided into two categories. The first category is skeptics who do not believe in the transparency and fairness of the bidding. The second category consists of potential auction participants who ask such questions as “what is sold,” “how much does it cost,” “how to buy,” etc. Speaking at the media briefing, representatives of the ministry said that the unified bidding platform is running on the web-portal of the state property register More than 3,000 auctions have been held on the platform since its launch in May 2013. “The procedure of electronic tender and bidding is now available as well. The electronic bidding procedure meets the needs of holdings,” the deputy minister said. According to him, it will make the tenders transparent and provide business with access to information in a one-stop shop way.

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