ASTANA – Top government officials have cast their vote early in the morning in the March 19 parliamentary election to the Mazhilis and the maslikhats, including Senate Chairman Maulen Ashimbayev, Prime Minister Alikhan Smailov, and State Counselor Erlan Karin.
Maulen Ashimbayev, chairman of the Senate, the upper house of the Parliament, also commented on the ongoing reforms after he cast his vote in the capital.
“This confirms the reforms carried out in our country are relevant, essential and meet the needs of our citizens. In these conditions, it is vital to hold these elections openly, transparently and fairly following the legislation of our country and international standards,” he said.
After voting at a polling station located at the National Library in Astana, Smailov said despite the tense geopolitical situation, Kazakhstan’s real sector economy maintained sustainable growth of 3.2 percent last year.
International rating agencies confirmed the country’s sovereign credit rating, having improved their outlook, he said, referring the the S&P rating published earlier in March.
Last year, investment in fixed assets increased by eight percent. Entrepreneurship is booming, with the number of employed by the small and medium-sized businesses growing by 9.3 percent and the number of such companied growing by 20 percent.
“At the same time, there were some inflation processes. We will work on this year’s target to reduce the inflation rate by more than twofold,” Smailov added. Inflation last year, impacted by the inflationary pressure from abroad, primarily, Russia, reached 20.3 percent in Kazakhstan, the highest number in ten years.
State Counselor Erlan Karin voted at the same polling station. He said the election should lead to the practical and successful implementation of the reforms outlined by the President.
“The reforms resonated with the society. Such a large number of people running today in single-mandate constituencies who participated in the campaign of various political parties demonstrates that the President’s reforms have received great interest and support in society, and these reforms are rather encouraging. I hope this election gives a new impetus to the planned reforms,” Karin noted.