Paris and Astana, 20 June 2017
On 20 June 2017, Kazakhstan became the 48th country to adhere to the OECD Declaration on International Investment and Multinational Enterprises. Adherence signals Kazakhstan's commitment to provide a fair and transparent environment for international investment and willingness to encourage the positive contribution investment can make to economic, environmental and social progress.
The OECD Investment Policy Review of Kazakhstan, which was undertaken to accompany the adherence to the Declaration, provides an overview of reforms undertaken to improve the investment environment and future commitments to increase the benefits of investment, bringing Kazakhstan closer to international good practice.
Kazakhstan has reduced bureaucratic barriers, streamlined licensing procedures, established agencies to facilitate new business formation and an investment ombudsman to tackle concrete problems faced by investors. Tax reform is also under way, which may result in better tax efficiency and transparency. Kazakhstan has also committed to promoting and enabling responsible business conduct and implementing the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, including by establishing a National Contact Point mandated with helping resolve practical issues with the implementation of the Guidelines.
The Review also highlights there is much to be done in order to fulfil Kazakhstan's ambition of joining the top 30 most advanced economies by 2050. Kazakhstan's plan to attract more investment must be complemented by efforts to build stronger institutions and ensure better policy coherence and transparency. Implementing clearer strategies for attracting investments; reinforcing linkages between foreign and domestic businesses; ensuring a fair level playing field among firms; and effective promotion and enabling of responsible business conduct should all contribute to the government's goal of economic diversification, sustainable development and broader social progress. The government will also need to prove to investors that institutions are accountable. Continued efforts to strengthen judicial independence and to fight corruption, which remain among the main concerns for businesses operating in Kazakhstan, should be pursued.
"Working with the OECD has helped us to prioritise our strategy for improving the investment policy framework with the objective of making Kazakhstan a better place to invest and live. I appreciate the opportunity to leverage OECD expertise and align our policies with international best practices for the benefit of our country“, said Yerlan Khairov, Vice-Minister for Investments and Development.
As an adherent, Kazakhstan will participate in the work of the OECD Investment Committee, a leading government forum for co-operation on international investment issues, and engage in active policy dialogue with peers. OECD and Kazakhstan will continue to work together to design, develop and deliver better policies for better lives in Kazakhstan.
Kazakhstan will report on progress in improving its regime for FDI pursuant to the National Treatment instrument and in improving the overall business environment to the Investment Committee in October 2017. On this occasion, Kazakhstan will also report on progress in tackling bribery, providing for an independent judiciary, and ensuring the respect for human and labour rights. It will also report on action taken to establish and build capacity of its National Contact Point.
The review and adherence to the Declaration were conducted within the framework of a two-year programme to help Kazakhstan adopt OECD standards and thus provide an anchor for its policy reforms.
For more information, journalists are invited to contact:
Markhabat Kissanova, Head of Investment Policy Division, Investment Committee, Ministry for Investments and Development of the Republic of Kazakhstan
Tel: + 7 7172 754541; email: email@example.com)
Frédéric Wehrlé, Senior Policy Analyst, Investment Division, OECD Directorate for Financial and Enterprise Affairs
Tel: +(33-1) 45 24 17 87; email: Frederic.WEHRLE@oecd.org