Kazakh PM Urges Streamlining Investment Procedures, Reducing Barriers

ASTANA – Kazakh Prime Minister Olzhas Bektenov directed state agencies to streamline investment project launch procedures, urging for a swift evaluation of support measures and proposing improvements at a March 5 government session dedicated to the efficacy of investment stimulation, reported the Prime Minister’s press service.

Olzhas Bektenov chairs a government session dedicated to the efficacy of investment stimulation. Photo credit: primeminister.kz

Bektenov instructed to ensure the full-fledged launch of the National Digital Investment Platform, designed to expedite administrative procedures and reduce barriers for investors.

Kazakh Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of National Economy Nurlan Baibazarov outlined plans to attract 22.1 trillion tenge ($49.2 billion) in fixed asset investments this year, marking a 22% increase over the previous year, with 234 projects valued at 2.3 trillion tenge ($5.1 billion) expected to be put in place through the Unified Pool of Investment Projects.

Kazakhstan has several initiatives to entice private capital. The mechanism for concluding an Investment Agreement has been improved, alongside introducing an Investment Obligations Agreement, which guarantees the stability of tax legislation for a decade. Fiscal incentives have been imposed to attract private funds for geological exploration and replenishment of the mineral resource base in the oil and gas sector. Modernizing the Investment Policy Concept until 2029 is underway alongside collaborative efforts with the business community to improve existing support measures.

The Prime Minister underscored the pivotal role of state support tools in global investment competition, emphasizing priorities such as high-value production, technology transfer, and localization. While Kazakhstan offers various preferences, including tax benefits and customs exemptions, Bektenov highlighted concerns regarding the targeted use and effectiveness of these measures.

He cited the underdevelopment of special economic zones compared to most developed countries and stressed the importance of creating a favorable administrative environment and infrastructure to attract investors.

“We spend significant budget funds on the maintenance of management companies, but do not receive proper efficiency and return in the form of investment,” he said.

Acknowledging the need for substantial improvements in local maintenance, the Prime Minister urged investors to reciprocate state support by enhancing productivity, promoting labor safety, and boosting exports.

He advocated for subsidy reforms for the agro-industrial complex to incentivize the adoption of advanced agricultural technologies.

Stressing the negative impact of lengthy land acquisition processes and complex construction regulations on the investment climate, Bektenov called for the involvement of domestic banks and international financial institutions to attract additional sources of financing.

He proposed the establishment of a single digital platform for providing state support measures to enhance investor convenience.

The Prime Minister instructed the Kazakh Foreign Ministry and Kazakh Invest national company to formulate a comprehensive strategy to attract foreign investments, indicating target countries, transnational corporations, and industries.

He also tasked the Baiterek holding company to bolster efforts to secure additional co-financing for investment projects.

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