WEEKLY REVIEW. Economic Policy in Kazakhstan to be oriented to macroeconomic stability

ASTANA. February 8. KAZINFORM The Government of Kazakhstan intends to boost economy no less than six per cent. A significant attention will be paid to the cultural sphere. The country is improving the business climate, especially for small and medium businesses.

On Monday, February 4, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev has held a sitting on the issues of Kazakhstan's development, the Presidential press service reports.

The sitting was attended by Prime Minister Serik Akhmetov, Head of the Presidential Administration Karim Massimov, Deputy Prime Minister Kairat Kelimbetov, Chairman of the Board of Samruk-Kazyna National Welfare Fund Umirzak Shukeyev, Minister of Oil and Gas Sauat Mynbayev.

The status of the banking sector, pension reform, development of oil and gas industry, and implementation of the President's instructions outlined at the Government's session and in the Strategy "Kazakhstan-2050" were on agenda.

Nursultan Nazarbayev emphasized the need to continue efforts on reducing the country's external debt, improving the efficiency of the pension system, shaping further steps to address current issues in the oil and gas sector.

At a briefing after the meeting U.Shukeyev noted that as a result of restructuring and other activities external debt of JSC "BTA Bank" has been reduced from USD 9 billion to 750 million. There was built a new system of management of the financial institution.

At the end of the meeting the Head of State gave a number of specific tasks on the discussed areas of ??work.

Besides, Minster of Culture Mukhtar Kul-Mukhammed announced the Kazakh Ministry of Culture and Information has designed minimum standards in the cultural filed.

In connection with the adoption of the new Law "On Culture" as well as making changes to a number of legislative acts due the initiative of the deputies, and our ministry, we are to take a lot of regulations, " M. Kul-Muhammed said. .

According to him, drafts of documents have been developed and will be adopted in the first half of this year.

"Strategic goals of our country need modernization of culture and information spheres for improving information security, further strengthening the common Kazakh identity and unity," Mukhtar Kul-Mukhammed said at the enlarged board meeting of the ministry.

According to the head of the Ministry of Culture, the main priorities of modernization should be: improving strategic planning for the medium term in the framework developed at the request of the Head of State national concept of social modernization and social modernization plan by 2016.

In addition,the same day Prime Minister of Kazakhstan S. Akhmetov charged Minister of Agriculture Assylzhan Mamytbekov to complete identification of the livestock in 2013 during an enlarged session of the board of the Agriculture Ministry of Kazakhstan.

"I put emphasis on this issue. Until we have the right records we will have no development in the sphere of livestock production. We need the exact numbers so we could check the updated information any time ," S. Akhmetov said.

He also added addressing the Minister of Agriculture of Kazakhstan that the Ministry had to complete the identification of the livestock of the country this year.

Besides, the Prime Minister emphasized a necessity for development of a veterinary service in the country.

"We will not achieve anything without forming security basics, food safety. Therefore, no meat has to be left without veterinary inspection," S. Akhmetov added.

Besides, Kazakh Prime Minister Serik Akhmetov urged to provide EXPO-2017 exhibition with energy from renewable energy sources.

"I believe that by 2017 we will have plenty of interesting projects not only around the city, but inside Astana as well," Akhmetov said at the Government's sitting on Tuesday.

The Prime Minister noted that program on renewable energy sources is not allowed to develop in the regions

On February 5 , Deputy Prime Minister -Minister of Industry and New Technologies Asset Issekeshev stated by 2020, we expect 1040 megawatts of renewable energy .

"This is the most conservative indicator, conservative figures because now on behalf of the President the Government is considering three documents on the basis of which will be a balanced solution," Issekeshev said.

The Minister said the three documents are the concept of electric energy development until 2030, the concept of development of the fuel and energy sector, the strategy of the "green economy."

On Wednesday, February 6, Deputy Prime Minister Kairat Kelimbetov announced speaking about the details of establishing a single pension fund, the press service of the Government said all pension savings of the citizens of Kazakhstan should be consolidated in the Single National Pension Fund by July 1, 2013.

Kelimbetov said that as part of the President's instructions, given at the enlarged meeting of the Government of Kazakhstan on January 23, 2013, on the transfer of all individual pension accounts of contributors (recipients) of the State National Pension Fund to the single pension fund it is proposed to establish a Single National Pension Fund on the basis of the State National Pension Fund, 100% of which is now owned by the National Bank.

Owner of the Single National Pension Fund will be the Government of Kazakhstan.

On February 7 at the extended session of the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection, Deputy Prime Minister Erbol Orynbaev stated that at present, social support is provided to almost a quarter of the population, which is over 4 million people,

This figure includes 1.8 million pensioners, 610,000 people with disabilities, 380,000 women, who received allowance for the birth of a child, 607,000 people, who received child allowance for children under 18 years of age. Targeted social assistance was provided to 97,000 people, targeted housing assistance cover more than 124,000 people. More than KZT 75 billion is allocated for special state benefits to 1.3 million people.

"Funding for this sector grows from year to year, being one of the largest budget expenditures - more than KZT 1.3 trillion. A 12% increase is expected this year", Orynbayev concluded.

In addition, ," Prime Minister of Kazakhstan Serik Akhmetov announced "30 best architects will take part in competition of ideas of "green" quarter for EXPO-2017

According to him, a big designing work will be started following the competition.

"This year, we have to announce tenders for contract work", he said.

On February 8, during Finance Ministry's extended board meeting Minister of Finance Bolat Zhamishev announced upon the results of 2012 the republican budget expenditures amounted to KZT 5 trillion 795 billion, or performed at 99.3%,

According to him, the unutilized balance was 0.7% or KZT 41.6 billion of the total expenditures, which is 0.1 percent lower compared to the same period last year.

According to preliminary data from budget program administrators, the funding of KZT 12.2 billion of unpaid obligations registered in 2012 of underutilized 41.6 billion is planned to be carried forward to 2013 due to the postponement of the execution of contracts. KZT 25.1 billion of the remaining amount has not been utilized.

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