Kazakhstan’s GDP notably improves, climbing 4.2% y/y in H1
Kazakhstan achieved GDP growth of 4.2% y/y in the first half of 2017, the country’s State Statistics Committee said on July 25.
The figure confirmed the preliminary estimate presented by Economy Minister Timur Suleimenov at a government meeting on July 18.
The recorded growth is a notable improvement over the economic expansion rates experienced over six-month periods dating back to 2015.
Astana is substantially reliant on increased oil production coupled with a bet on rising foreign investment to boost growth, while mild economic recoveries of big trading partners such as Russia have helped to deliver more economic activity. The long-awaited relaunch of the giant Kashagan oil project in the Caspian Sea took place in October 2016 and more hydrocarbon projects are due to come online.
The growth was mainly driven by high rates in the mining sector (9.4%), oil output (9.7%) and coal production (16.5%), according to Suleimenov.
Kazakhstan is hoping to raise annual economic growth to 5.5% by 2021.
In 2016, crude oil production in Kazakhstan fell by 1.4% y/y to 65.5mn tonnes, while gas condensate production amounted to 12.4mn tonnes, giving a total of 78mn tonnes. Kashagan oil field’s recommencement should allow Kazakhstan to raise oil output by an additional 4-7mn tonnes in 2017 from 2016’s level.
Suleimenov predicted in a March 2 interview with Reuters that higher-than-expected oil prices may push Kazakh GDP growth to 2.8% this year, above the government’s recently updated forecast of 2.5%.