National news in brief

Alstom has started producing Prima M4 KZ4AT passenger electric locomotives at the Nur-Sultan-based EKZ joint venture. The company plans to hire 35 additional workers for the new line, which includes Prima T8 freight locomotives, KZ8A for Kazakhstan and AZ8A for export to Azerbaijan, and on-board transformers. “We are proud to widen our activities by launching the new production line for passenger locomotives in Kazakhstan, which diversifies the country’s industrialisation programme. The first passenger locomotive should be ready by the end of 2019 and then certified as a new and premiere product ‘Made in Kazakhstan’ and we have a strong will to become an export platform in Central Asia. The same 20 Prima M4 passenger locomotives are already in commercial operation on Kazakh railways and have run more than 15 million kilometres, which demonstrates their outstanding rail system availability and reliability,” said Alstom Managing Director for Kazakhstan Guillaume Tritter.

The Pavlodar Region plans to increase meat exports two-fold using the preferential loan programme. The region is building a sectoral pyramidal structure including a network of family farms, large feedlots and deep meat processing. Pavlodar, which last year exceeded its export plan by one third, shipping 135,000 tonnes worth more than $3.8 million, has entered the top three regions for meat export. “Ten feedlots with a total capacity of 13,400 head operate in the region. This year, we will launch two investment projects to cover the need for industrial feedlots. In 2018, the region produced 96,500 tonnes of meat and 382,100 tonnes of milk. The growth in raw material production leads to an increase in the network of meat processing and milk processing enterprises,” said regional Akim (Governor) Bulat Bakauov.

Approximately 1,250 projects worth 7.9 trillion tenge (US$20 billion) were launched and 120,000 jobs created during the years to implement the state industrial-innovative development programme, reported Kazinform. “Kazakhstan exports to 120 countries. In recent years, we started to produce more than 80 new types of goods that have not previously been manufactured in the country. We exported approximately 50 new product items in 2018. The production has doubled over the years,” said Vice Minister of Industry and Infrastructure Development Amaniyaz Yerzhanov on May 30.

Almaty hosted the first Almaty Nordic Walking Fest 2019. The June 2 event provided an opportunity for every participant and corporate team to achieve results based on a fixed time and judges’ evaluation. Plans are underway to organise the event in Nur-Sultan and Shymkent. “Nordic walking is great fitness for all ages. It allows you to stay fit and healthy while enjoying [the activity]. We introduced the first individual competitions with time measurement for all participants and distances for experienced and beginner athletes. We feel that the Nordic Walking Fest will win the hearts of our people,” said Olympic athlete and event initiator Elena Khrustaleva.

Bike lanes in Nur-Sultan will occupy at least 20 percent of the capital’s existing road network, according to Elorda Info. “We built 150 kilometres of bicycle paths last year. If the projects on the construction of new bicycle paths are approved at the town planning council, it will take at least a year to build 180 kilometres. Further development depends on how much the existing bicycle infrastructure will be in demand,” said Architecture, Urban Planning and Land Relations Department head Anton Maximov.

The Akmola Region Chamber of Entrepreneurs, Employment Centre and HoReCa Academy of Service and Tourism will launch short-term training. The first academy, which opened in the region in 2018, aims to develop quality standards in the tourism industry and improve hotel and restaurant service. The training, lasting up to three months, will be available for waitstaff, bartenders, hotel and restaurant administrators and hotel staff. “Students of the short-term courses receive a scholarship of 17,000 tenge (US$45). Upon graduation, a certificate is issued and further employment is offered. We will also offer an internship in five-star hotels in Turkey in the future,” said human capital development department expert Leila Zhanspaeva.