During the meeting, vital issues and prospects for the development of the capital, as well as organizational aspects of the international exhibition, were discussed. 48 days left until the exhibition. To date, 115 countries, 21 international organizations expressed a desire to participate in the exhibition, 2.5 million tourists are expected to arrive.
Opening the meeting, the Head of State noted the importance of the upcoming exhibition EXPO-2017 for the country and the people, drawing attention to the need for thorough preparation for the reception of foreign guests and tourists from all regions of Kazakhstan.
"We have reached the final stage of preparation, a lot of work has been done. The capital must be ready to meet a large number of guests. It is necessary to prepare infrastructure, hotels, cultural facilities, city services," the President of Kazakhstan said.
Nursultan Nazarbayev stressed that Astana should become one of the best cities in the world and comfortable for people's lives. In this regard, the President of Kazakhstan gave a number of instructions for the further development of the capital.
"We need to introduce modern digital technologies in all areas of urban management. The government should define Astana as the main platform for the introduction of digital technologies. According to my instructions, the International Technopark of IT Startups will be created on the territory of the Expo," the Head of State said.
The President of Kazakhstan also instructed to develop the city following the example of Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore and create on its base a financial and business hub on the scale of the Eurasian space.
"2700 foreign companies work in Astana for today. They invested about 3.2 billion dollars in the economy of the city. At the same time, the existing opportunities are not fully used. The potential of the special economic zone of Astana is weakly involved. The further development of the capital must take into account the urbanization processes. By 2030, its population could grow by another one million people. The task of the city is to ensure productive employment through the creation of new permanent jobs," Nursultan Nazarbayev instructed.
The head of state separately dwelt on the issue of housing sector development and instructed the Government to deal with queues for housing from the state housing fund.
"The city should keep the volume of annual housing commissioning at a level of at least 2 million square meters per year. It is necessary to intensify the work on the demolition of illegal buildings, the development of existing 15 thousand garden plots, which should not be under the General Plan. It is necessary to free the central districts of the city from ramshackle housing construction. I instruct the mayor of Astana to make proposals on the compact development of the capital," the President of Kazakhstan said.
In addition, Nursultan Nazarbayev noted the growth of the "shadow" market rental housing, the problem of co-investors and drew attention to the need for modern transport infrastructure.
"Astana has a significant potential for becoming a tourist center. I instruct the Government together with mayors to take measures to develop tourism in the capital," the President of Kazakhstan said.
The head of state pointed to the insufficient work to provide the capital with food.
"The vegetable stores, the communal market, a network of shopping pavilions are not loaded enough. Thus, two out of eight vegetable stores do not work and the rest are loaded by a quarter. At the same time, over the past two years, imported foodstuffs worth more than 42 billion tenge were imported to Astana. In many ways, this is a product that we can produce ourselves. All this shows that work to develop the food belt around Astana, in fact, failed," Nursultan Nazarbayev said.
The head of state drew attention to the issues of preparation of the city for the international exhibition "EXPO-2017" and determined the priority tasks for the national company and the Government.
"The construction of most of the facilities is completed and ready for operation. At the same time, construction work continues on the Congress Center and the hotel. It is necessary to ensure their timely delivery. The impression of the guests will be formed from the moment they arrive at the airport and train stations. The complete readiness of the entire infrastructure is important. The airports of Almaty, Karaganda and Kokshetau, as reserve, should also be ready to meet the guests," the President of Kazakhstan said.
Nursultan Nazarbayev noted the need to organize a roadside service for tourists who arrive by car.