Kazakhstan is located in the heart of the Eurasian continent, being a transit bridge between Europe and Asia. Major transcontinental routes, linking the Asia-Pacific with the Middle East and Europe pass through our country. Kazakhstan’s advantageous geographical location, macroeconomic and political stability created one of the most attractive investment climates in the region.
Kazakhstan is the 9th largest country in the world with rich natural resources. The Republic is one of the largest producers of oil, coal, copper, zinc, chromium, etc. It ranks first in uranium mining and one of the leading positions in the world in the export of wheat. In addition to that, in the year 2010 the industrialization program was launched in Kazakhstan, that is intended to reduce raw material dependence and to provide diversification of the economy.
Over the past 10 years more than $200 billion of foreign direct investments were put into the economy of our country, the largest part of which occurred during the period of industrialization. Moreover, over 70% of foreign investments in the first five years of the program were invested in manufacturing industry. It indicates that this area becomes more attractive than the commodity sector. Тoday in non-primary sector of the economy about 30 multinational corporations already operate in Kazakhstan, such as Toyota, HeidelbergCement, General Electric, Linde, Danone, Thales, Alstom and others.
In 2015, the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan adopted a Law on the establishment of the Astana International Financial Centre ‘‘Astana’’ (AIFC), which will start functioning in 2018. With a view to attract new investments, unprecedented conditions are created for the participants of the AIFC, taking into account the world’s best practice. The international arbitration centre for the protection of the rights of investors will open on its site, based on the norms of British law. The AIFC courts will be independent and separated from the judiciary system of Kazakhstan. The official language of the AIFC will be English.
From 2014 a large-scale privatization program was launched in the country, in which foreign investors are invited. Thus, 65 of the largest enterprises with Republican and national holdings ownership are offered for the privatization. Furthermore, in order to enhance the investment attractiveness, the State improves production and transport infrastructure. The “Nurly Zhol” Program, which aims to generate high-quality transportation network before 2020, will reduce the distance and increase the export capacity. Altogether more than 7 thousand km of motorways will be built and renovated within the framework of this program. In 2015–2016 alone about $1.8 billion already disbursed. One of the most significant major infrastructural projects is the construction of the Western Europe – Western China motorway, worth about $3.5 billion. The total length of the motorway is more than 8.4 thousand km, 2.8 thousand of which goes through Kazakhstan. By virtue of implementation of this project, the time for transportation of goods from China to Europe will be reduced 4 times compared to sea route, or from 40 to 10 days. Thus, Kazakhstan becomes a regional logistics hub, providing the shortest transit routes in all directions.
One of the most important priorities in the work of the Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan and our Ministry is to create a favourable investment climate, to improve to the level of countries of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. We actively work with the OECD on entering the Investment Committee of the organization in the near future. Due to advantageous geographical location, vicinity to such countries as the Russian Federation, People’s Republic of China, Islamic Republic of Iran and he countries of Central Asia, Kazakhstan is a convenient central platform for entering the nearby growing markets with a total volume of more than 300 million people. Kazakhstan is a part of the integration project – The Eurasian Economic Union, which also includes Russia, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan and Armenia. The advantage of this is the access to the market of 183 million people with a total GDP of more than $2.2 trillion. In addition, in 2015 Kazakhstan joined the World Trade Organization, leading to deeper integration of Kazakhstan into the world trade. Today in the field of investment, rules in force in our country meet all the requirements of the WTO.
In conclusion, I would like to note that Kazakhstan is open for investment, and the Government is doing everything to support partners interested in implementing their projects in our country. We invite you to invest in Kazakhstan!
Minister for Investment and Development
of the Republic of Kazakhstan