Local Employment and Economic Development (LEED Programme)

Capacity building seminar: Strengthening agricultural co-operatives in Kazakhstan (Trento, Italy)


13-17 October 2014, Trento, Italy
Vicolo San Marco 1

A capacity building seminar organised by the
OECD LEED Trento Centre and the OECD Eurasia Competitiveness programme


Objective / Context / WhatWho / Format / Contact



The aim of this seminar was to build institutional capacities and transfer methodologies to Kazakh policy makers in areas that will help improve the country’s agricultural competitiveness and support the development of small-scale production. It drew upon on OECD know-how and the Trento experience in agricultural cooperatives.

This event was part of a series of seminars designed to:

  • Showcase OECD international good practices.

  • Raise awareness of the importance of public-private dialogue in the reform process.

  • Highlight the role played by small-scale farmers in Kazakhstan’s agricultural sector.

  • Strengthen institutional capacities to embed a policy reform process in Kazakhstan.

  • Transfer methodologies and build analytical and decision making capacities of Kazakh policy makers.



The Kazakhstan Regional Competitiveness Project was launched in 2011 to support the government in designing reforms to promote regional competitiveness and inclusive growth in Kazakhstan’s regions. The core objectives of the project are to strengthen the potential of regions to attract foreign direct investment (FDI), to improve competitiveness in non-extractive sectors, and to foster linkages between FDI and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The project works with sub-national administrations and regional stakeholders to diversify sources of investment and increase private sector competitiveness, through the design and implementation of reforms to improve the business climate. These objectives are achieved through a comprehensive approach that includes strategy development, consultations with stakeholders, public-private dialogue, reform implementation and capacity building.

The initiative is co-financed by the European Union and the Republic of Kazakhstan, and will last until May 2015.



Participants were invited to exchange experiences and discuss common challenges in developing and implementing strategies, programmes and actions in line with the OECD recommendations stemming from the project. The seminar gave particular attention to the role of agricultural cooperatives in supporting the development of small-scale producers in Kazakhstan. Participants had the opportunity to present their own programmes and policies, and to discuss with international experts and practitioners the approaches and policy options adopted to tackle similar challenges.




This seminar targeted a selected group of Kazakh policy makers, including representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture, KazAgro, Ministry of National Economy and regional administrations. Representatives of industry associations such as the Union of Farmers and other relevant stakeholders were also invited to take part in the event. Participants were invited to actively engage in the sessions by preparing case studies from their own experience and sharing their knowledge with the experts.



The four-day capacity building seminar was structured around discussions in working groups based on input from case studies presented by the Kazakh participants and OECD expert presentations on the policy strategies that governments have used in this field. Inputs from international experts and OECD staff provided a framework for discussion, and all sessions were facilitated in order to bring out common conclusions.

The seminar served as a platform for knowledge and experience exchange among participants rather than a traditional “vertical capacity building” event. By sharing the unique experience and knowledge of each participant, the seminar aimed to generate new and fresh approaches to successful policy implementation in the Kazakh context.

Simultaneous interpretation was provided in English and Russian.



For further information on the seminar, please contact  Alessandra Proto at the OECD LEED Trento Centre, Italy or Jean-François Lengellé at the OECD Eurasia Competitiveness programme, Paris, France.


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