Economic Developments - March 2018

Industrial production in Kazakhstan in January 2018 increased by 5.2% compared to corresponding month of 2017. Foreign direct investments into Kazakhstan in first nine months of 2017 amounted to US$15.8 billion. Kazakhstan exported non-primary products worth more than US$14 billion in 2017. Total volume of exports increased by 31.6% to US$43.1 billion.

Kazakhstan ranks 53rd among largest exporting countries. Its manufactured products are exported to 122 countries – 50% to European Union, 12% to China, 5% to Central Asia. Kazakhstan is world leader in supply of uranium, copper, titanium, ferroalloys, yellow phosphorus, flour, wheat etc.

Kazakhstan's foreign trade turnover in January-December 2017 amounted to US$69.4 billion, representing an increase of 25.1% over 2016. Exports during this period were US$43.06 billion, a rise of 31.6%. Imports were US$26.3 billion, a 15.8% increase compared to 2016.

Trade between Kazakhstan and countries of Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) in 2017 amounted to US$17.4 billion, which is 25.9% more than in 2016. Exports were US$5.1 billion (+30.2%) and imports US$12.2 billion (+24.1%). 

Kazakhstan will allocate around US$60mn for development of recently launched Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC) over next three years. AIFC is a financial services hub to be run as a free economic zone. Some planned projects include an international IT start-up hub as well as a “green” technologies centre developed in partnership with UN. The two projects are expected to attract investments worth US$40bn into the country.

Tajikistan will supply 1.5 billion kWh of electricity to Afghanistan in 2018 which is 15% more compared to previous year. Price will increase by 3%.

Asian Development Bank (ADB) has pledged US$70 million to fund transmission of 1,000 MW electricity from Uzbekistan to Afghanistan.

It is reported that Central Asian cargo will have access to Gwadar Port of Pakistan through Kashgar while bypassing Afghanistan. Uzbekistan sent its first cargo shipment loaded on trucks to China through Kyrgyzstan on the route "Tashkent – Andijan – Osh – Irkeshtam – Kashgar."

The largest glass manufacturing enterprise in Central Asia was opened in Turkmenistan. At the initial stage, 15 types of products will be produced including float glass (polished, sheet glass) and containers for food and medical industry. Investment in the project amounted to US$375 million and created over 800 new jobs.

Kashagan oil field in Kazakhstan is expected to see output rise to 370,000 bpd (barrels per day) in 2018, up from 270,000 bpd in last quarter of 2017, and to 450,000 bpd within two years. 

 

March 30, 2018

 

 

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About the Author

Ambassador Ashok Sajjanhar

Former Ambassador of India to Kazakhstan, Sweden and Latvia; President, Institute of Global Studies and Distinguished Fellow, Ananta Centre

Ambassador Ashok Sajjanhar belongs to the Indian Foreign Service and has acquitted his responsibilities in the diplomatic service for 34 years. He was Ambassador of India to Kazakhstan, Sweden and Latvia and has worked in senior diplomatic positions in Indian Embassies/Missions in Washington DC, Brussels, Moscow, Geneva, Tehran, Dhaka and Bangkok and also at Headquarters in India. He negotiated for India in the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations and in negotiations for India-EU, India-ASEAN and India-Thailand Free Trade Agreements.

He contributed significantly to strengthening strategic ties and promoting cultural cooperation between India and USA, EU, Russia and other countries.Ambassador Sajjanhar worked as head of National Foundation for Communal Harmony to promote amity and understanding between different religions, faiths and beliefs. Ambassador Sajjanhar has been decorated by Governments of Kazakhstan and Latvia with their National Awards and by Universal Peace Federation with Title of ''Ambassador of Peace.'' Currently Ambassador Sajjanhar is President of Institute of Global Studies, New Delhi. He writes, travels and speaks extensively on issues relating to international relations, foreign policy and themes of contemporary relevance and significance. He appears widely on TV panel discussions. Ambassador Sajjanhar is interested in reading, music and travelling. His wife Madhu is an economist and an educationist. They have a son and a daughter both of who are accomplished singers. Their son passed out of Yale University and their daughter is pursuing her PhD at University of Minnesota.