Kazakhstan records increase in foreign investments

ASTANA: The Prime Minister of Kazakhstan Bakytzhan Sagintayev has told investors of the Kazakhstan government’s pledge to make the central Asian nation a country for business to settle and invest.

Speaking at the World Investment conference in Astana, Sagintayev said, the policy is in line with the Kazakh president Nursultan Nazarbayev’s 2017 pronouncement when he announced the Third Wave of Modernization of Kazakhstan aimed at ensuring qualitative economic growth and determining the model of industrial and technological modernization in conditions of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

“At the end of 2017, economic growth was 4%. At the same time, the contribution of non-energy sectors provided almost 2/3 of growth. This means that the Kazakh economy is increasingly beginning to rely on non-energy sectors. Kazakhstan was ranked 36th in 2017 according to the international ranking Doing Business. Positions improved in 6 indicators. In total, about 50% of all foreign investments were directed into non-commodity sectors,” Sagintayev said.

“Positive dynamics are maintained this year too. In just 5 months of 2018, agreements were reached to implement 69 new projects with major investors, including the United States, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, 10 TNCs from China, Turkey, the EU and other countries.

The Kazakh-Chinese Industrial and Investment Cooperation Program is successfully implemented, which includes 51 projects to the tune of $27.7 billion. Combined, in 2018 54 projects will be completed for a total of $3.9 billion, and, total of 63 projects worth $6.8 billion will also be launched,” Sagintayev added.

Sagintayev said that the Kazakh government will strengthen the coherence of national legislation with international economic and trade rules; increase transparency, improve the protection of property rights, ensure the rule of law and encourage competition and limit monopoly based on the OECD standards.

It was noted that Kazakhstan already has the status of an associated member of the OECD Investment Committee, which confirms that our country’s investment climate is in line with the Organization’s standards.

“The Government carried out a decisive reform on deregulation and drastically reduced administrative pressure on business. Our President publicly signed the largest legislative package on improving the business climate, which includes more than 1000 amendments to 14 codes and 109 laws that came into effect. Control and supervisory functions have been reduced by 30% and the number of claims— by 56%,” he said.

In 2018-2020, Kazakhstan plans to privatize nine of the largest assets of Sovereign Wealth Fund “Samruk-Kazyna,” including oil and gas, mining companies, a railway operator and an air carrier.

Sagintayev said the Kazakh government is ready for an open dialogue on the whole range of issues and suggests not just investing, but building a new Kazakhstan, implementing the dream of prosperity in the broadest sense of the word – the prosperity of the country and its citizens, business and every investor.