Kazakh, British companies sign several agreements in London

Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 5

By Rashid Shirinov – Trend:

A number of agreements between Kazakh and British companies in various fields were signed at the Kazakhstan Global Investment Forum 2018 held in London, the official website of the Prime Minister of Kazakhstan said in a statement.

The forum, attended by more than 150 business representatives, was devoted to new opportunities in the field of business and investment, as well as the prospects of Kazakh-British projects in the fastest growing sectors of the economy of Kazakhstan.

The main topics discussed current innovations in improving the country's investment climate and tax and customs benefits, the State Property Privatization Program, the favorable geographical position of Kazakhstan at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, its participation in the Chinese initiative “One Belt, One Way” and the Eurasian Economic Union, as well as the functioning of the Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC), which applies the norms of English law on its territory.

Senior executives from the manufacturing, agricultural, chemical, mining and financial sectors, as well as metallurgy, alternative energy, logistics and digital technologies, including representatives of such large international corporations as Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, JP Morgan Bank, Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley, Ernst & Young, PricewaterhouseCoopers, the London Stock Exchange, participated in the forum.

The Kazakh delegation at the event was led by the Deputy Prime Minister of Kazakhstan Askar Zhumagaliyev.

“Kazakhstan is interested in attracting British investors who will bring with them finance, technology and best business practice necessary for successful diversification of our economy and its integration into the global system,” he said in his speech.

The deputy PM added that the UK is one of the largest investors in the economy of Kazakhstan – it accounts for $13 billion out of the $300 billion raised over the 27 years of Kazakhstan’s independence.

The Vice Minister for Investments and Development Arystan Kabikenov, in turn, spoke about the development of investment climate.

“Today, Kazakhstan holds 36th position across 190 countries in the World Bank's Doing Business 2018 ranking. By 2050 Kazakhstan must join the world’s 30 most developed countries. To ensure further economic growth, the Government continues to pursue a policy of attracting investments,” he noted.

Speaking at the forum, the British Trade Envoy Baroness Emma Nicholson noted that the interests of the UK are not limited to the mining industry of Kazakhstan, the privatization program and the development of Astana as a Eurasian financial hub.

“We also want to participate in the diversification of Kazakhstan’s economy,” she stressed.

The Head of the EBRD Suma Chakrabarti, in turn, noted that Kazakhstan has the necessary potential to become a vivid example for other countries seeking to build a sustainable market economy that works in the interests of the whole society and is open to the rest of the world.

The outcome of the Kazakhstan Global Investment Forum 2018 was the conclusion of a number of agreements with British companies in the fields of transport and logistics, metallurgy, energy, agriculture, engineering, and in the field of developing the healthcare system infrastructure.

In particular, the Samruk-Kazyna Sovereign Wealth Fund and the EBRD signed an agreement on the provision of a guarantee to the loan agreement between ShalkiyaZinc LTD and the EBRD. The Fund acted as a guarantor of obligations for financing the construction of a concentrator at the Shalkiya deposit in the Kyzylorda region.

It is worth noting that the UK is among the top 10 trading partners and the six largest investors in Kazakhstan, which accounts for almost 5 percent of the total volume of attracted foreign investment.

Presently, more than 800 legal entities, branches and representative offices with British participation are registered in Kazakhstan.

Last year, the bilateral trade between the two countries increased by 1.5 percent and amounted to $1.28 billion, while Kazakhstan’s exports to the UK rose to $926.7 million.

In the first quarter of 2018, the total turnover amounted to $252.6 million. Kazakhstan’s exports to the UK reached $158.8 million and the imports stood at $93.8 million.

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