Economic news in brief

The assets of Kazakh second-tier banks increased 1.5 percent in June and 6 percent over the year to 24.9 trillion tenge (US$64.66 billion). June produced a noticeable change in bank relocation by assets. ForteBank climbed two positions, moving from fourth to second and overtaking Kaspi Bank and Sberbank. The bank’s assets grew 7.2 percent in May and 33.5 percent in a year. Jýsan Bank (formerly Tsesnabank) also rose two positions from ninth to seventh, increasing its assets 12.4 percent; its assets in a year, however, dropped 44.1 percent. Although Kaspi Bank and Sberbank were downgraded in the ranking, they had a 1.5 percent (31.7 percent annual growth rate) and 1.6 percent (14.6 percent annual growth) increase in their assets, respectively.

Investments in health and social services decreased 15.1 percent to 25.2 billion tenge (US$65.44 million) from January-May year-on-year (yoy). The biggest share, 37.8 percent or 9.5 billion tenge (US$24.67 million), came from the national budget, a 32.7 percent increase yoy. The investment share from local budgets and the businesses’ own funds significantly decreased. Local budget investments in healthcare decreased 51.4 percent to 5.2 billion tenge (US$13.50 million) and its share fell from 36.2 percent to 20.8 percent. Investments from the businesses’ own funds decreased 24.2 percent to 8.7 billion tenge (US$22.59 million). At the same time, investments from borrowed funds and bank loans increased noticeably, more than 5.6 times a year. Their cumulative sum increased to 1.8 billion tenge (US$4.67 million).

By the end of May, the number of private enterprises operating with state participation had decreased 5 percent during the year to 651 companies, a figure that has been reducing since 2016. At the same time, the number of public-private partnerships (PPP) has been growing; 302 PPP contracts were signed by the end of 2018, a 61.5 percent increase year-on-year (yoy), and 546 units were in place at the end of May. The largest share of PPP projects, 26.6 percent, are concentrated in the East Kazakhstan Region, followed by the Pavlodar Region and Almaty with a combined 19 percent. The vast majority, or 80.8 percent, of all PPPs are in education (49.6 percent), healthcare (20.5 percent) and energy and utilities (10.6 percent).

Capital investments in arts, entertainment and recreation increased 30.6 percent to 35.5 billion tenge (US$92.19 million) from January-May. The East Kazakhstan Region received the largest investment, 12.1 billion tenge (US$31.42 million), to promote tourism, followed by art and leisure investments in the Almaty and Kostanai regions of 7.7 billion tenge (US$20 million) and 6.3 billion tenge (US$16.36 million), respectively. The investments came mainly from local budgets representing 61.8 percent (22 billion tenge or US$57.13 million) of the total capital expenditure, a 32.1-percent increase per year.

Kazakh money transfer systems sent 227.6 billion tenge (US$591.06 million) remittances abroad from January-May, a 7.4-percent increase year-on-year (yoy). The largest share, 36 percent or 82 billion tenge (US$212.95 million), was sent to Russia, an 8.3-percent decrease compared to last year. The second largest transfers, 40.3 billion tenge (US$104.66 million), were sent to Uzbekistan, a 28.9-percent increase yoy, followed by 33.4 billion tenge (US$86.74 million) sent to Turkey, a 33.6-percent increase yoy. Golden Crown has the largest margin of money transfers abroad with 162.7 billion tenge (US$422.52 million), 71.5 percent of the total and a 28.3-percent increase yoy. It was followed by Western Union (28.8 billion tenge or US$74.79 million, an 11.6-percent decrease yoy) and Unistream (10.1 billion tenge or US$26.23 million, a 45.4-percent decrease yoy).