Persian Gulf’s Qatar Scales Up Investments in Kazakhstan

ASTANA – Kazakhstan remains a key recipient of the gross foreign direct investment (FDI) from the Persian Gulf countries. Qatar’s contributions of $13.1 million constituted an impressive threefold growth in 2022. In the first three quarters of 2023, Qatari investments reached $4.4 million, reported analytical website. 

The Kazakhstan-Qatar business forum in October 2023 in Doha. Photo credit:

Since 2015, FDI inflows from Qatar to Kazakhstan have surpassed $60 million. Energy, agriculture, logistics, and manufacturing are the major areas of economic cooperation. The statistics showcase an escalating interest from Qatar and other Gulf nations in Kazakhstan.

Overall, by the end of 2022, FDI inflows of the region reached $460.7 million, marking a substantial 26.8% increase compared to a year before. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) continues to lead in investments provided to Kazakhstan among all Persian Gulf countries.  

Government measures underscore the commitment to fostering economic ties between Kazakhstan and Qatar. In October 2022, the sides agreed to intensify economic cooperation. The Mazhilis, a lower chamber of the Kazakh Parliament, ratified the document in December last year. 

“The purpose of the agreement is to create favorable conditions for investment activities, stimulate the inflow of foreign direct investment, and improve the economic well-being of the contracting countries,” said Kazakh Deputy Foreign Minister Nazira Nurbayeva. 

The results for the first 11 months of 2023 reveal a record-high trade turnover of $9.7 million between the two countries, which is 2.4 times higher than the previous year. 

As part of the Kazakhstan-Qatar business forum in October 2023 in Doha, over 150 representatives from government entities and the private sectors of both countries addressed new projects in the key sectors, according to the Kazakh Invest national company. The event announced the establishment of the Kazakhstan-Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry. 

Kazakhstan and Qatar are collaborating on investment programs, including a $200 million grain processing plant in the Akmola Region. In addition, Kazakhstan’s Baiterek national management holding, Qatar’s Power International Holding, and China’s International Capital Corporation are considering establishing a direct investment fund to develop a dairy cluster and the entire agro-industrial complex. 

Qatar is a major hub for international air travel and a key exporter of oil, natural gas, petrochemicals, and fertilizers. In 2021, the country was the world’s third-largest exporter of natural gas and the world’s second-largest exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG). Most of Qatar’s natural gas exports went to markets in Asia and Europe, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration 2023 report.

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