Kazakh Regulator Urges Pension Funds to Sell Shares on Exchange

Nov 24. Bloomberg

By Nariman Gizitdinov

Kazakh Regulator Urges Pension Funds to Sell Shares on ExchangePension fund companies in Kazakhstan should sell shares on public stock markets to allow them to meet new requirements that take effect in the coming years, the head of the country’s market watchdog said.

A new law restricting a single shareholder from possessing more than 25 percent in a pension fund from 2012 is “quite ambitious and pension funds will need time to find new shareholders,” Yelena Bakhmutova, head of the Agency for Financial Supervision, told reporters in Almaty today.

Kazakhstan, the biggest energy producer in central Asia, had 13 pension funds as of Nov. 1, most of them owned by Kazakh banks, according to the agency’s website. Assets at pension funds rose to 86.7 billion tenge ($588 million) in October from 85.6 billion tenge a year earlier, according to the agency’s data.

The growth of assets at pension funds also will lead to a need to increase equity, which may be done via the stock market, Bakhmutova said.