Economic News in Brief

The process of Kazakhstan joining the World Trade Organisation (WTO) will be completed in a few months, said Director of the WTO office of accession Chiedu Osakwe in a May 3 statement. “Despite the uncertain global economic situation, the future of Kazakhstan is very bright, because President Nursultan Nazarbayev, as a strategic reformer, set a high standard level of internal modernisation and integration into the global economy,” he stressed. He also said that he followed the presidential elections in Kazakhstan with excitement and heard Nazarbayev’s first performance immediately after the election. “I congratulate the people of Kazakhstan and the President on a well-deserved victory! This election result is for the benefit for the people and for its President – for the implementation of its plans to support the existing stability in the country and the process of integration into the global economy. We expect that in a few weeks, negotiations on Kazakhstan joining the WTO will be completed and in a few months all work on this process will be finished and Kazakhstan will become a full member of our organisation. It will be a well-deserved result of the work of the government and of reformist Nazarbayev,” said Osakwe.

“As part of the second wave of privatisation, the largest number of objects was realised in the services sector,” said Deputy Finance Minister Ruslan Dalenov at an April 30 briefing in the Central Communications Service (CCS). “The service sector leads in the number of objects.” According to Dalenov, the amount of proceeds from the privatisation funds was 43 billion tenge (US$231.6 million), 25 billion tenge (US$134.6 million) of which was bailed out due to the implementation of industrial projects. “The bulk of the proceeds from the privatisation of the assets entered in the holdings mostly belonging to Samruk Kazyna,” he stressed. Dalenov said the most expensive object was KEGOC; its shares were sold for 13.1 billion tenge (US$70.5 million) as part of the People’s IPO programme. This was followed by the five companies sold off by Kazakhstan Temir Zholy, including Temir Zhol Energo, Kamkor Locomotive and Temir Zhol Zhondeu Transport Service Centre. The highest purchasing activity was observed in the Almaty and the Aktobe regions. According to Dalenov, 122 objects are now on sale.

“Within the long-term financing of the processing industry, seven second-tier banks approved 11 projects worth 10.6 billion tenge (US$57.1 million) due to the second tranche of the National Fund of Kazakhstan,” the Development Bank of Kazakhstan (DBK) reported on April 30. According to the DBK, two projects – production of beverages in the Almaty region and production of food in the Kyzylorda region – have already been financed. Approximately $155 billion tenge (US$8.1 million) in funds were allocated for refinancing; thus, 3 percent of the 50 billion tenge (US$269.3 million) allocated has already been used. According to the statement, the DBK has been using funds of the second tranche since March for financing projects in the mining industry within Nurly Zhol, the new economic policy. In accordance with the approved conditions, financing of new projects should not exceed 50 percent of the second tranche, refinancing of early issued credits, 25 percent, and refilling current assets, 25 percent. The credit conditions approved by the government for loans are as follows. The nominal rate of return should be no more than 6 percent per year. The loan term is ten years for new projects and refinancing of investment loans, five years for refilling working capital and refinancing loans. The loan currency is tenge, with the financing limit per loan from 200 million (US$1.1 million) to 5 billion tenge (US$26.9 million). The term of spending credit resources will be 18 months on credit issued for investment purposes, six months for refilling working assets and refinancing early-issue DBK loans. The DBK, created in 2001 is now part of the Baiterek National Managing Holding and is the national institute for development of the modernisation and non-recourse and infrastructure sector of Kazakhstan. 

Get The Astana Times stories sent directly to you! Sign up via the website or subscribe to our Twitter and Telegram!