A. Kabikenov: In January-February 2018, investments in fixed assets increased 54.4%
Deputy Minister of Investments and Development Arystan Kabikenov presented the results of the investment attraction operations for the past period of 2018 during a press conference in the Government press center and talked about issues to be resolved before the end of this year.
Arystan Kabikenov notes that in January-February of this year, investment in fixed assets increased by 54.4% compared to the same period last year and amounted to 1.2 trillion tenge.
Investment in industry increased 84.8%. At the same time, along with the mining industry, which grew 94.5%, investment in processing increased 72% and in construction by 159.8%.
External investments for the indicated period of this year amounted to 361.5 billion tenge, having increased by 160.3 billion tenge. At the same time, the greatest growth is observed in such regions as Atyrau, Karaganda regions and Almaty city.
As part of the execution of the instruction of the Head of State, attracting investments is a priority task of the Government. In this regard, the National Investment Strategy was adopted and is being implemented, the main focuses of which are attraction of foreign direct investments, public-private partnership and privatization, � Arystan Kabikenov said.
To achieve the main goal of ensuring the planned GDP growth (in 2018 – more than 4%), targets were set up to 2025. The required national rate of investment growth in fixed assets in 2018 is 5.1%.
Implementation of these tasks includes two initiatives: intensification of efforts to attract investments and improvement of the investment climate. In the framework of the first initiative, work on projects is carried out on an ongoing basis. The second initiative includes systemic measures aimed at improving the investment climate in the country.
For 2018, a detailed plan has been developed that provides for the execution of about 14 actions.
After eight years of joint work with OECD, last year Kazakhstan became an associate member of the OECD Investment Committee. This serves as an indicator that the country’s investment climate meets the high standards and requirements of the organization, � the Deputy Minister of Investments and Development said.
Thus, following the OECD recommendations, the list of countries whose citizens may visit Kazakhstan on a visa-free basis has been expanded � 61 since 2018, including all OECD countries. In addition, until the end of 2018, a 72-hour visa-free regime was introduced for Chinese citizens who transit through Astana and Almaty airports. Currently, the issue of implementing a similar visa-free regime for Indian citizens is under consideration.
The conditions for attracting foreign labor have also been revised, and a Specialized Judicial Board for Investment Disputes has been created under the Supreme Court. The work on concluding international agreements on the promotion and mutual protection of investments has been improved.
I would like to note that following the visit of the Head of State to the UAE, an agreement was signed between the Governments of the Republic of Kazakhstan and the United Arab Emirates on the promotion and mutual protection of investments. At present, draft agreements with more than 20 countries are under consideration, � the Deputy Minister said.
This year, a package of legislative initiatives will be formed to further improve the investment climate. In addition, with regards to SEZ’s, a number of legislative amendments on the optimization of tax administration have already entered into force in the framework of the Tax Code since January 1, 2018. In December 2017, the Code “On Subsoil and Subsoil Use” was signed, which will come into force on June 29, 2018.
In order to ensure the accessibility of legislation in the field of investment for foreign investors, the Ministry approved a list of legal acts concerning business and investment activities for translation into English.
The State has a package of measures to support investors, including tax preferences, exemption from payment of customs fees and the provision of land grants, the provision of investment subsidies in support of the agro-industrial complex.
In order for investors to obtain the maximum amount of information about the investment potential of the regions, work is underway to modernize the investment portals of regional Akimats. In particular, an investor will be able to find information about vacant land plots, success stories of current investors, as well as information facilitating a comfortable stay of the investor in the region: hospitals, kindergartens, schools, taxis, and hotels providing services in English.
In general, the Ministry of Investments and Development is systematically working to create a favorable investment climate.
Source: Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan