EY’s attractiveness survey: Kazakhstan 2013 – Unlocking value

Between 2000 and 2010, Kazakhstan was one of the fastest-growing economies in the world.

However, a combination of factors, including subdued external demand, weaker metal prices and a decline in agricultural output, have resulted in slower growth of 5% in 2012.

Nevertheless, the global economic uncertainty has led investors to look at Kazakhstan as a safer place to grow. In 2012, the country attracted US$14b in FDI inflows, making it the second most attractive investment destination in the CIS region.

Kazakhstan’s macroeconomic, social and political stability became the key driver of investment in 2012. Over the next two years, Kazakhstan’s economy is expected to grow to 7.1% in 2015, becoming one of the world’s top three fastest-growing economies.

The country’s other strategic strengths include its:

  • Telecommunications infrastructure
  • Corporate taxation
  • Natural resources
  • Competitive geographical location
  • Performance in sustainable development

However, challenges remain. According to 59% of our respondents who are already established in Kazakhstan, the level of legal and regulatory transparency and stability remains questionable.

Also, there is a wide perception gap between foreign investors already established in Kazakhstan and those who are not. While 83% of current investors are happy with their decision to enter the market, only 6% of respondents with no presence in Kazakhstan are considering setting up activities in the country.

In order to reach its potential as an investment destination, Kazakhstan is called to:

  • Spread the word about its opportunities and potential
  • Move up the value chain
  • Remove regional disparities
  • Enhance the business environment
  • Foster innovation

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