Key projects of Almaty

Nov 02. Kazpravda

By Kulpash KONYROVA, Doszhan NURGALIEV

Key projects of AlmatyMayor of Almaty Akhmetzhan Yesimov told the media briefing in the Central Communications Service under RK President about prospects of the city’s development.

Almaty is known as a major cultural, sport and tourism, financial, scientific and educational center not only in Kazakhstan but also in the region as a whole. The lion’s share of public and private universities of the country, largest business enterprises, financial institutions and other institutes of development are concentrated there.

This year Kazakhstan nominated Almaty as a regional hub of multilateral international diplomacy and the host of the Olympic Winter Games and Universiade -2017. At the recent CIS summit in Minsk the heads of state took a decision to declare Almaty the cultural capital of the CIS in 2014.

Thereby the southern metropolis continues to play a key role in the economic, educational and cultural life of the region, remaining in this respect the epicenter of attraction of knowledge, innovations, resources and attention of the world community.

Business in metropolis

At present, according to official statistics, the population of the city is 1million 489.1 thousand that is about 10% of the total population of the Republic of Kazakhstan. At the same time Almaty accounts for about 18% of GDP, 25% of the total state budget revenues, 40 % of the total wholesale turnover. Another significant factor of economic growth of the city is the fact that its budget — 359 billion tenge is comparable to the economy of Armenia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Mongolia. At that the GRP per capita is 25 thousand dollars. This exceeds the average rate of such countries as CzechRepublic, Poland and other European countries.

Almost 60 % of the total financial revenues in the city’s budget is provided by small and medium business. Each third able-bodied citizen of Almaty is involved in this sphere. Due to high activity of business life of the metropolis, including measures of state support, the unemployment rate in 2013 is 0.2% of the economically active population. 16 thousand new jobs have been created since early-2013 in the framework of the state employment program.  All these measures provided increase in tax revenues. By the end of this year, their volume in the city’s budget is expected to reach more than 1.3 trillion tenge.

According to statistics, in January — September 2013, the enterprises of the city produced industrial products at KZT 457.9 billion. The index of physical volume of industrial production in relation to the same period of 2012 amounted to 104.4 %. The number of active small and medium-sized businesses today is 103 455, the number of employees — 374 750.

Business entities from the beginning of the year produced output at 1 448,8 billion tenge and paid taxes in the amount of 399 billion 969 million tenge.

Regional Coordinating Council in the frames of the program Business Road Map 2020 approved 188 SMSE projects the total amount of 55 billion 651 million tenge. The sum of paid subsidies made up 3 billion 373 million tenge.

The points of growth

The industrialization Map of Almaty today consists of 30 projects designed to manufacture high-tech products and create more than 5 thousand jobs, the lion’s share of which is high-tech specialty. From 2010 up to date, 19 projects were implemented and about 3 thousand jobs opened.

In the first half of 2013 two important projects worth KZT 15.5 billion were commissioned. In the second half of the year three industrial- innovation projects totaling KZT 67 757.55mln were submitted to the Ministry of industry and new technologies for consideration.

As Akhmetzhan Yesimov said at the meeting, they plan to concentrate new industrial enterprises in a special industrial zone. The list of 169 potential investors with the creation of 20 thousand jobs has been already prepared. The project provides opportunities for intensive industrial development of the city. At that, the creation of the specialized industrial zone will solve such strategic problems as withdrawal of existing businesses from the center of the city, increase of total production by 1.5 times, attracting investment resources and the implementation of transfer of innovative technologies, as well as the formation of system for training and use of qualified personnel in the industrial sector.

The total area of the industrial zone is 490 hectares, said the mayor, and priorities at placement of facilities on its territory will be given to ecologically clean productions.  More than 180 industrial enterprises are willing to become participants of the project. In the current year about 4 billion was allotted for the construction of engineering infrastructure. In 2014 it is planned to allocate for this purpose the same amount.

By the way, the new zones and new neighborhoods led to the expansion of the city’s boundaries which now are 23 thousand hectares.

Tourist prospects

As known, the President instructed to create around Almaty world-class ski resorts. The southern metropolis has all necessary conditions for that, in particular, unique natural landscape of the foothills of ZailiAlatauMountains.

– At the multiplier effect, about 30,000 jobs can be created only at the planned ski resort Kok Zhaylau, — said the Mayor.

He cited the example of the reconstruction of the Shymbulak ski resort, which resulted in significantly increased attendance. Thus, the number of tourists-hikers grew from 196,400 in 2010/11 to 313,300 in 2012/13. The number of skiers during the same period increased from 43,300 to 97,500.

Recently Almaty hosted the I Eurasian conference “Development of new tourist destinations for winter tourism”. Leading international experts recognized the prospects of development of ski tourism in the Almaty region. This involves the creation of a whole complex of resorts, which will unite in a single system such unique areas as Akbulak Tabagan, Shymbulak, Kok Zhaylau and Aksai gorge.

Akhmetzhan Yesimov said that together with representatives of the World Tourism Organization they discussed prospects of development of this industry in Almaty and decided to open their regional office.

– The decision was made when a large delegation of the World Tourism Organization, headed by Secretary General visited our sights, saw the beauty of our mountains and estimated the potential of already built infrastructure, -he said.

He also recalled that in developing countries, tourism in the last year gave the growth of 4% of GDP, in developed countries this figure was 10-15%, while in Kazakhstan it is less than 1%.

Transport and infrastructure

Almaty continues to improve the road infrastructure. Over the last 5 years 20 of the planned 26 interchanges were constructed. During this time more than 140 km of new roads were put into operation and about 1 thousand km of urban roads were repaired. In 2013 224 city streets with the total length of 158.2 km, including 21 main streets have been repaired. New roads were built in the residential districts Shanyrak -5 and Algabas with the total length of 11.9 km. The second stage of Almaty subway is under construction.

Answering the journalists’ questions, Akhmetzhan Yesimov spoke about the prospects of this form of public transport.

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