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Why Kazakhstan is attractive for foreign investors

6 December 2017 15:00 1122
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Why Kazakhstan is attractive for foreign investors

ASTANA. KAZINFORM - Prime Minister of Kazakhstan Bakytzhan Sagintayev told participants of the 1st Kazakhstan Global Investment Roundtable in Astana on Tuesday why Kazakhstan is attractive for investors and what specific benefits and opportunities foreign investors will gain by developing their business in Kazakhstan, Kazinform reports. 

The Premier stressed that Kazakhstan's economy started to stabilize after a difficult period of global changes between 2014-2016. "Thanks to the adopted measures the GDP growth in the 10 months of 2017 reached 4%. Private investments and the population's consumer activity are recovering. Thus the country as a whole has adjusted itself to new global realities. We are starting on the path of economic growth," he said.

Secondly, according to Mr. Sagintayev, our country is entering a new stage of its development. In the beginning of 2017, the President announced the Kazakhstan's Modernization 3.0. Its objective is to support the implementation of the Strategy "Kazakhstan - 2050" and five institutional reforms of President Nursultan Nazarbayev as well as to facilitate the country's accession to the top 30 most developed nations of the world in the new environment.

"Thirdly, great opportunities to investors are offered by our policy of developing state-of-the-art knowledge-intensive manufacturing and upgrading basic sectors of economy and agro-industry, which will all become recipients of large-scale investments under the umbrella of Kazakhstan's Modernization 3.0," Bakytzhan Sagintayev emphasized. "We continue diversifying the economy and invite investors in the sectors of metallurgy, oil processing, chemicals and machine building. There are a lot of projects in Kazakhstan in the field of design and development of production of copper, gold, rare metals and rare-earth elements, including lithium and vanadium, phosphate raw material, and many others".

The Prime Minister reminded that being one of the global leaders in the production of wheat flour, Kazakhstan started a large-scale modernization of the agro-industrial complex and introduction of the latest advances in the field of fertilizers, bioadditives and selection.

"All of these unleash great opportunities for investment in the food industry," he said.

According to the Prime Minister, Kazakhstan has become an investment attractive country for infrastructure development, logistics, transport and related services. He cited as an example the construction of almost 3 thousand kilometers of the Kazakhstan section of the ‘Western Europe - Western China" International Transit Corridor, the second railroad track of the Almaty-Shu section, the Khorgos - Eastern Gate" dry port on the border with China, the Aktau Sea Port and the launch of the 900km long "Kazakhstan-Turkmenistan-Iran" railroad corridor.

These steps, Sagintayev believes, will remove infrastructure constraints, shorten cargo transportation time in all directions and are profitable for business.

"Our strategic goal is to make Kazakhstan a major transport and logistics hub in Central Asia. All transport and logistics infrastructure of Kazakhstan and the Nurly Zhol Program are associated with the Chinese mega projects on creating the Silk Road Economic Belt and One Belt, One Road initiative, covering the greater part of Eurasia," the Prime Minister highlighted.

He said that the fifth reason why Kazakhstan has become the investment attractive country for foreign investors is that local industrial enterprises have the opportunity to introduce advanced technologies, elements of Industry 4.0, automation and robotic production and that Kazakhstan has embarked on the path of digitalization with its ambitious Digital Kazakhstan program.

Kazakhstan's location at the crossroads of Europe and Asia and the fact the it has access to the largest markets - the EAEU, Russia, China, and Central Asia is another reason why it may attract foreign investors.

Sagintayev also took time to talk about a brand new tool that Kazakhstan will offer foreign investors starting in 2018 - the Astana International Financial Center. In his words, the Center will stimulate innovative activities and create favorable conditions for investors.

"[AIFC] will offer concessional tax, visa and labor regimes to foreign investors. It will operate in accordance with principles and norms of British law and with the court procedures carried out in English. The International Arbitration Center will operate on its territory in order to settle disputes. The Arbitration Center will operate under the extraterritoriality principle. Any investor can apply there regardless of the place of implementation of a project in the territory of the country," said the Kazakh Premier, adding that only few countries in the can offer such financial services.

Sagintayev drew attention of those present to the fact that according to the reports of PriceWaterhouseCoopers and the World Bank Kazakhstan takes 18th place among 189 countries on the tax climate level. In addition, Kazakhstan takes 36th place on a strong note among 190 countries in the World Bank's Doing Business. We have progressed on all 10 indicators of the rating. We are the first on "Protection of minority investors" indicator and sixth place on "Enforcing contracts". Currently the Government is working on further promotion within the Doing Business rating.

After listing all the reasons, Prime Minister Sagintayev urged foreign investors to seize the opportunity and come to work in Kazakhstan.




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