The middle class is the base for growth
February 20. Kazpravda
By Gulaim TULESHEVA
At the public meeting, the mayor of Astana Imangali Tasmagambetov told about the achievements of the main city in 2013 and goals for the future in the light of the President’s Address.
Astana is one of the seven values of the national idea Mәңgіlіk El, voiced by the President in his state of the national address, said the mayor emphasizing the increased role of the capital in dynamic development of the country.
According to Tasmagambetov a solid foundation for further growth was laid last year. Thus, the gross regional product amounted to 2 trillion 700 billion tenge; industrial enterprises produced goods and rendered services worth more than 263 billion tenge. The municipal authorities set the target by 2020 to increase the share of services in the GDP structure to 80%.
– The capital is growing rapidly, but the sphere of services does not always keep up pace with this process. Small and medium sized business should be diversified to meet modern principle of “step by step availability” and expand the net of its branch activities. That’s why the state fully supports business initiatives, lending to entrepreneurs – said Tasmagambetov. According to him, in 2013 alone, more than 6 thousand businessmen received real assistance under the state program Business Road Map -2020.
Continuing the theme of entrepreneurship, Tasmagambetov noted that today small and medium business generates development of the middle class, the formation of which, according to the President of the country has strategic importance.
– Already today, small and medium-sized business accounts for 67 % of tax revenues to the city budget. The volume of their products over the past year made up 1 trillion 200 billion tenge, – added the mayor. – By 2017, we have all opportunities to increase the number of SME subjects to 60 thousand.
An Industrial park with all technical conditions for investors was created in the capital to implement investment projects. Over the past three years it produced goods and services worth more than 120 billion tenge, which is 45% of the city’s volume. If in 2010 the volume of industrial production of the capital was 111 billion tenge, with the launch of the park’s facilities this figure doubled reaching KZT 263 billion in the current year.
As the mayor noted, by 2017 the volume of output released in the Industrial park will be about 250 billion annually and over 8 thousand new jobs are expected to be opened. In addition, the amount of tax revenues to the state budget will increase by 4 times and reach 70 billion tenge; the share of local content in goods and services will approach to 70 %.
Much work is to be done in the sphere of urban infrastructure. The BRT project – high-speed buses, running on specially allocated lanes is a new ambitious project to unload the public transport system and to prepare the capital for hosting EXPO 2017. In June this year, construction of the first line of the BRT will be launched and its completion is scheduled for 2016. In addition to important logistic result, the project will bring such effect as new jobs.
During the meeting the mayor also touched on the social issues. In particular, Tasmagambetov said that the amount of children’s and social benefits and targeted social assistance will be increased from April 1, 2014 not by 12%, but by 16% in the framework of the President’s orders on social support after devaluation of the national currency. Today in the capital there are 3 999 recipients of such help.
The mayor also reminded other system instructions of the President, announced at the government’s meeting on 14 February this year, including an increase by 10% of scholarships to students and increase of pensions by 14% taking into account their growth in the current year.
From April 1, salaries of civil servants employed in the government agencies (now there are more than 24 thousand of such workers in Astana) and employees of national companies engaged in manufacturing will be also raised by 10%.
At the same time Tasmagambetov said that a significant proportion of 1 trillion tenge allocated on the President’s instruction from the National Fund in 2014 and 2015 to provide the real economic sector with credit resources, will be also available to small and medium enterprise of the capital.
The mayor spoke about positive impact of the devaluation of the national currency on the economy. In particular, it will help to curb the growth of import volumes, revive the internal market, support domestic producers and save gold reserves of the country. In addition this measure will increase incomes of exporters and state budget, attract additional financial resources to the Kazakh economy, and the state will be able to re- invest in the domestic market the means earned from exports.