• KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00225 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00225 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00225 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00225 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00225 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00225 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00225 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00225 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%

Viewing results 1 - 6 of 90

Money of Kazakhstan’s National Fund to Be Invested in New Format

The National Bank of Kazakhstan has revealed its strategy for investing the National Fund's money in alternative instruments, emphasizing the gradual increase in money committed to that tranche of investments to $2.5 billion by 2025. This portfolio, launched in 2023, represents 3% of the total allocation of the savings portfolio and will be a key element of asset diversification. National Bank officials note that this decision came as part of a drive to balance the National Fund's assets and improve returns. This, in turn, contributes to additional diversification and mitigation of risks. The National Fund Management Concept to 2030, developed by the country's main bank and approved by president Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, defines strategic principles and approaches aimed at maximizing returns. It includes the use of defensive strategies, factor investing, and also pays attention to ESG (Environmental, Social & Governance) principles. The structure of the National Fund consists of a stabilization portfolio and a savings portfolio. While the former is invested in short-term government securities issued in developed economies, the latter is more diversified and includes a wide range of assets, including alternative instruments and a gold portfolio. The National Fund's assets currently stand at $60.7 billion, despite the withdrawal of 35.5 trillion tenge (~$77 million) over the past ten years, mostly during the pandemic.

Market Capitalization of the Kyrgyz Stock Exchange Reaches Record Level

In a short period of time, the Kyrgyz Stock Exchange (KSE) has launched various financial instruments: a government securities market, a precious metals market, other commodities instruments, and a sustainable development sector, KSE President Medet Nazaraliev explained at a meeting with representatives of the business community. The head of the exchange said that businesses registered in Kyrgyzstan have begun to show interest in the opportunities of the KSE, and with increasing financial literacy, more and more companies are interested in issuing securities to raise funds. KSE's market capitalization, according to official data, reached a record high of $1.25 million in the first quarter of 2024. "In recent years, the country's stock market has seen growth in all indicators. For sustainable development, companies need to expand the sources of attracting investments, and today the stock market [helps] to attract investments by issuing shares, bonds, creating a public [market] history and increasing the reputation and recognizability of the company," said Nazaraliev. At the meeting with participants of the Kyrgyz Chamber of Commerce and Industry, representatives of the exchange emphasized that it is important to develop not only the securities sector, but also the commodities sector. "One of the important tasks of the stock market is to ensure a high level of liquidity of investments in securities, [and] guarantees of execution of transactions. I hope that in the future the stock exchange will become a place for mass transactions in the commodities sector, as well. All over the world, commodity exchanges help to quickly raise money to increase production of high-demand goods and realize the tasks of creating transparent pricing mechanisms, including for commodities. Exchange mechanisms prove to be effective in terms of developing competition and ensuring equal access to goods," said KSE Vice President, Aida Chodulova. Officials are preparing to launch a digital project which will allow citizens to invest in securities online. There are also plans to attract international investments. International ratings agency, S&P Global Ratings is scheduled to evaluate the activities of the KSE, and the Kyrgyz government and business community hope that this will help the Republic multiply its chances of attracting foreign capital through the exchange.

Kazakhstan’s Foreign Debt Increases by $4 Billion in Five Years With Russia Growing as Creditor

According to the National Bank of Kazakhstan, at the beginning of 2024 the external financial obligations of the republic reached almost $163 billion, whilst in 2019 this figure stood at $158.8 billion. The Netherlands are Kazakhstan's largest creditor with $42.6 billion owed, followed by the U.K. with $13.8 billion, and then Russia at $12.95 billion. Over five years, Kazakhstan's debt to Russia (+47.1%) and multilateral organizations (+28.5%) increased significantly. At the same time, the amount of debt held by legacy creditors decreased, including that held by the Netherlands (-12.9%), the U.K. (-37%), the U.S. (-7.4%), France (-4.3%), China (-20.7%) and Japan (-17%). Last December, the Asian Development Bank approved a $350 million loan to Kazakhstan. This was allocated to reform the country's financial management and increase the economy's resilience against external shocks. In February of this year, the World Health Organization, with the support of the World Bank, launched a Pandemic Fund project in Kazakhstan. For this purpose, the republic was allocated a grant totaling $19 million, as well as a multilateral grant of $27 million for three years. Earlier, former chief auditor of Kazakhstan, Natalia Godunova, criticized the use of international funds by government agencies, saying that the procedure is inefficient.

Over 90% of Economically Active Kazakhstanis Have Loans

Lyazzat Usenbekova, director of consumer protection at the Association of Financiers of Kazakhstan, conducted calculations to find out what percentage of Kazakh citizens have debt obligations, concluding that "more than 90% of those who actively participate in the economic life of the country bear the burden of credit obligations on their shoulders." Usenbekova specified that this percentage applies to those who are indebted to credit organizations. At the same time, the structure of loans reveals interesting details: according to her data, almost a third of citizens take out loans for relatively small amounts, meaning no more than 500,000 tenge ($1,115). However, they account for only 1.7% of the total loan portfolio of individuals. Meanwhile, 5% of Kazakhs have debts over 10 million tenge ($22,290), and their share in the total volume of loans accounts for 42.3%. "It may seem that loans for large sums are a cause for concern, but before issuing such loans, clients are carefully checked for their ability to pay, their debt load and other aspects," Usenbekova emphasized. Usenbekova also looked at the category of loans under 300,000 tenge, suggesting they are probably for consumer needs. "Such loans are often interest-free and, with proper borrower discipline, should not cause serious difficulties with repayment," she explained. But there is no perfect picture yet, Usenbekova stated, stressing the need to improve people's financial literacy and their responsibility to their debts. Majilis (lower chamber of parliament) representative, Tatyana Savelyeva assessed the prospects of enacting changes envisaged by the draft law on minimizing risks in lending and protecting borrowers' rights. "We are likely to see real results in a few years, when these innovations begin to operate. For example, in debt regulation. By then we will be able to objectively assess their effectiveness," Savelyeva opined. The proposed bill to protect the rights of borrowers provides for a ban on the transfer of debts to collection agencies within 24 months of the start of delinquency and for debt settlement procedures that exclude fines, penalties and commissions.

Kazakhstan to Spend 500 Billion Tenge to Buy Domestic Bank Bonds

According to a document on asset management from the Unified National Pension Fund (EPPF), the Times of Central of Asia has learned that the National Bank of Kazakhstan is ready to invest 500 billion tenge ($1.1 billion) of pension funds in bonds issued by Kazakhstan's second-tier banks (BVU). According to the EPPF, this step is necessary to support entrepreneurship and give businesses the opportunity to obtain loans. However, as always, there are conditions. The funds will be directed to financial institutions that meet certain requirements. For example, the bank's credit rating should be no lower than "B," and its equity capital no less than 60 billion tenge ($134 million). Also, loans will not be issued to replenish working capital or refinance current loans. And that's not all; wholesale and retail trade, construction, real estate operations and even financial consultations are also not eligible for lending. And the National Bank is not going to stop there. In 2024, it will continue work on improving the management of pension assets. Last year, the same idea was raised by the head of the Association of Financiers of Kazakhstan, Elena Bakhmutova, who about the need to provide access to longer-term funding through BVU.

ADB Forecasts Faltering Economic Growth

The People's Republic of China (PRC) will remain the engine of growth for the world economy, even despite some slowdown. That forecast has been made by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) specialists in their report, Asian Development Outlook. Inflation is expected to decline in 2024 and 2025 after the increase in food prices in many countries over the past two years - and developing economies in the Asia-Pacific region will grow by an average of 4.9%, according to the ADB. Experts predict the highest economic growth for India: where the economy will grow by 7% this year and 7.2% next year. As for China, experts are more reserved in their forecasts: China's growth will slow to 4.8% this year and 4.5% next year. "Obviously, China will play an important role for some time to come. It still accounts for almost half of the GDP [gross domestic product] in the Asia-Pacific region," said ADB chief economist ,Albert Park. At the same time, economists also warned of possible risks: supply chain disruptions, uncertainty over U.S. monetary policy, the effects of extreme weather, and volatility in the PRC's real estate market. Inflation in developing Asia-Pacific economies is expected to fall to 3.2% this year and 3% next year as global price pressures ease and monetary policy remains tight in many countries. However, inflation in the region, with the exception of China, is still higher than before the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the bank's forecasts, economic growth in Uzbekistan will slow this year and grow slightly next year. This is because higher state-regulated prices will limit the growth of real household incomes, thus reducing demand. Economists expect a lower growth in services and agriculture. Lower remittances, fiscal space constraints, and lower global demand for Tajikistan's main exports will cause Tajikistan's economic growth to slow slightly in 2024 and 2025, the ADB said. "Tajikistan faces serious climate challenges and risks that could lead to irreversible economic, social, and environmental damage," said the ADB 's resident representative in Tajikistan, Shanny Campbell. The ADB says developing a green economy is key to the country's sustainable growth. As for its nearest neighbor, Kazakhstan, the ADB has lowered its GDP growth forecast for 2024 to 3.8%, down from 4.3% in the previous review. In 2025, the figure is expected to be 5.3%. Actual GDP growth at the end of 2023 was at 5.1%. "The growth rate of Kazakhstan's economy in 2024 will decrease against the background of slowdown in industrial growth due to stagnation in oil production and then recover in 2025 due to the growth of resource extraction at the Tengiz field and investments. Prospects for Kazakhstan's economic growth in the medium term look positive," ADB analysts said. As for developed economies globally, their growth will slow down this year: GDP growth in the U.S. will fall to 1.9% from last year's 2.5%, and in Japan, GDP will grow by 0.6% compared to 1.9% in 2023.

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