Kazakhstan 2011 industrial output seen growing 4.8 pct

Feb 16. Reuters. ASTANA

* Mining, processing to drive industrial output
* Oil output forecast for 2011 steady at 81 mln T

Kazakhstan 2011 industrial output seen growing 4.8 pctKazakhstan, Central Asia’s largest economy, on Wednesday raised its 2011 industrial output growth forecast to 4.8 percent from a previous estimate of 3.6 percent, due to projected growth in mining and processing.

“Industrial output growth will be driven by an estimated 3.5 percent growth in the mining sector and by a forecast 7.3 percent rise in the processing industry,” Economy Minister Zhanar Aitzhanova told a government meeting.

She also revised the ministry’s forecast for 2011 gross domestic product (GDP) growth to 5 percent, the upper end of a previous estimate of between 4 percent and 5 percent.

Kazakhstan, which has attracted around $150 billion in foreign investment since independence in 1991, is the world’s largest uranium producer and a major producer of oil and industrial metals.

Aitzhanova confirmed an earlier forecast for oil production of 81 million tonnes this year and said Kazakhstan expected the average world oil price to fluctuate at around $65 per barrel in 2011.


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Kazakhstan’s intl reserves exceed $63 bln on Feb 14

Feb 16. Reuters. ASTANA

Kazakhstan’s total international reserves grew to more than $63 billion as of Feb. 14 from less than $59 billion at the end of 2010, the central bank said on Wednesday.

As of Feb. 14, the figure included some $32 billion held in the National Fund, replenished by windfall oil export revenues, and another $31 billion of the central bank’s net gold and foreign currency reserves, central bank chairman Grigory Marchenko told members of the ruling Nur-Otan party.