China-kaza­khstan En­ergy Co­op­er­a­tion Ush­ers in Great Op­por­tu­ni­ties

— An in­ter­view with Timur Ma­likov, the Di­rec­tor of the Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Of­fice to the PRC of the SAMRUK-KAZYNA

China's Foreign Trade (English) - - Special Report - By Chen Lu

“The ‘Belt and Road’ ini­tia­tive is a timely so­lu­tion to the global po­lit­i­cal, eco­nomic and hu­man­i­tar­ian crises of this cen­tury, and its suc­cess­ful im­ple­men­ta­tion will bring tan­gi­ble ben­e­fits to the world,” said Nazarbayev, Pres­i­dent of Kaza­khstan, in May 2017 when he at­tended the Round- Ta­ble lead­ers’ sum­mit of the “Belt and Road” Fo­rum for In­ter­na­tional Co­op­er­a­tion in Bei­jing.

As an im­por­tant gate­way con­nect­ing Asia and Europe, Kaza­khstan has also ben­e­fited from the “Belt and Road” ini­tia­tive. Joint-stock Com­pany Na­tional Wel­fare Fund SAMRUK-KAZYNA Di­rec­tor in China, Timur Ma­likov, in­tro­duced a se­ries of projects dur­ing a re­cent in­ter­view with China’s For­eign Trade, which wit­nessed achieve­ments by eco­nomic and trade co­op­er­a­tion be­tween the two coun­tries. Pow­er­ful play­ers en­cour­age co­op­er­a­tive projects be­tween China and Kaza­khstan

It is re­ported that the SAMRUKKAZYNA man­ages th­ese large state-owned en­ter­prises and fi­nan­cial de­vel­op­ment agen­cies, co­or­di­nates na­tional key projects and in­vest­ment projects, and ac­cu­mu­lates rev­enue to deal with the in­ter­na­tional fi­nan­cial cri­sis. In fact, it con­trols the real econ­omy of Kaza­khstan.

Timur Ma­likov said, the “Belt and Road” ini­tia­tive con­trib­utes greatly t o t he SAMRUK- KAZYNA. Un­der the frame­work of the “Belt and Road” ini­tia­tive, the China Na­tional De­vel­op­ment and Re­form Com­mis­sion and the Kaza­khstan In­vest­ment and De­vel­op­ment Min­istry jointly pre­pared the “China- Kaza­khstan Pro­duc­tion Ca­pac­ity Co­op­er­a­tion and In­vest­ment Plan­ning”, and con­cluded agree­ments for 54 projects. Most of th­ese projects are lo­cated in Kaza­khstan and 20 of them are owned by the SAMRUK-KAZYNA, in­clud­ing power sta­tions, chem­i­cal fiber plants, min­ing and so on. In ad­di­tion, the SAMRUK-KAZYNA works in co­op­er­a­tion with the Silk Road Fund, the China Na­tional De­vel­op­ment Bank, the China Ex­port-im­port Bank and the Asian In­fra­struc­ture In­vest­ment Bank, to fund Chi­nese com­pa­nies that in­vest in Kaza­khstan, since most of whom make in­vest­ments through loans. Last year, the SAMRUK-KAZYNA and the Silk Road Fund reached projects of USD 8 bil­lion.

“We look for­ward to di­ver­si­fied in­vest­ments and eco­nomic and trade co­op­er­a­tion be­tween the two coun­tries, es­pe­cially in the fields of in­tel­li­gence, min­ing, chem­i­cal in­dus­try and raw ma­te­rial pro­cess­ing.” Timur Marikov said, “China has a great de­mand gap in elec­tric power, and Kaza­khstan in­tends to ex­port elec­tric­ity to China, but the co­op­er­a­tion in this sec­tor is lim­ited, since such projects are com­plex and there is a lack of in­vest­ment. As for now, the Kaza­khstan Na­tional Fund is ac­tively boost­ing co­op­er­a­tion with the China Na­tional En­ergy Ad­min­is­tra­tion.”

The theme for the China Pav­il­ion at the As­tana Expo 2017 is “Fu­ture En­ergy, Green Silk Road”. Timur Ma­likov men­tioned although rich in nat­u­ral re­sources, Kaza­khstan is not a strong player in new en­ergy, so it needs ad­vanced tech­nol­ogy from China for fur­ther de­vel­op­ment by co­op­er­at­ing on green power gen­er­at­ing projects. Now, the SAMRUK-KAZYNA is work­ing to­gether with the China Three Gorges Cor­po­ra­tion pro­mot­ing co­op­er­a­tion on hy­dropower and wind power. Lo­cal­iza­tion is a con­sid­er­a­tion when in­vest­ing in Kaza­khstan

Ac­cord­ing to Timur Ma­likov, Kaza­khstan be­gan the pri­va­ti­za­tion of its state- owned en­ter­prises in 2016, in hopes of re­duc­ing the pro­por­tion of state-owned en­ter­prises ac­count­ing for 20% in 2019 from 40%. The SAMRUK-KAZYNA owns more than 600 af­fil­i­ated state-owned en­ter­prises. It is cur­rently try­ing to sell some out and it wel­comes for­eign in­vestors to take part in the pri­va­ti­za­tion process, in­clud­ing Chi­nese en­ter­prises.

“Kaza­khstan im­ple­ments many pref­er­en­tial poli­cies for for­eign-funded en­ter­prises. As to chem­i­cal projects, we have con­structed two eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment zones with com­pre­hen­sive wa­ter and elec­tric­ity, heat­ing and other in­fra­struc­ture, and Chi­nese com­pa­nies op­er­at­ing there will be free of taxes for 20 years.” Timur Marikov said.

In ad­di­tion, Timur Marikov also ad­vises Chi­nese com­pa­nies in­ter­ested in in­vest­ing in Kaza­khstan to pay at­ten­tion to “lo­cal­iza­tion”, namely strictly fol­low­ing lo­cal stan­dards, em­ploy­ing lo­cal peo­ple, and in­te­grat­ing with the lo­cal com­mu­nity. Th­ese mea­sures can play an im­por­tant role in pro­mot­ing the de­vel­op­ment of en­ter­prises there.

Timur Ma­likov re­vealed that a num­ber of state-owned un­der SAMRUKKAZYNA com­pany would at­tend the en­ergy fo­rum held on July 5 dur­ing As­tana Expo 2017, look­ing for­ward to ex­pand­ing and deep­en­ing the com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween China and Kaza­khstan, and pro­mot­ing bi­lat­eral eco­nomic and trade co­op­er­a­tion.

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