Alikhan Smailov talks about new technology mode formation in Kazakhstan

Prime Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan Alikhan Smailov spoke at the main plenary session "Industrial Strategies of New Times" within the framework of the INNOPROM. Kazakhstan", held these days in Astana.

The event was also attended by Prime Minister of Belarus Roman Golovchenko, Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers and Head of the Presidential Administration of Kyrgyzstan Akylbek Japarov and Chairman of the Government of Russia Mikhail Mishustin.

In general, the main plenary session gathered about 700 participants, including high-ranking representatives of the public sector, heads of regions, heads of manufacturing enterprises, members of industrial unions and associations of the EAEU countries.

In his speech, Alikhan Smailov noted that as part of the work to form a strong industrial framework for Kazakhstan and ensure economic self-sufficiency, the Government is emphasizing the accelerated development of the manufacturing sector. In particular, measures are being taken to implement projects aimed at creating clusters of high processing. First of all, in oil, gas and carbon chemistry, metallurgy, heavy engineering, production of auto components and fertilizers, uranium industry and other segments.

"For this purpose, Kazakhstan is carrying out systemic reforms, improving state support measures, introducing a proactive approach to attracting investment," Alikhan Smailov said. 

According to him, over the past 5 years, the volume of production of the manufacturing industry has grown 2.2 times, and the volume of gross value added of the industry has grown 2.3 times. Labor productivity at the same time grew to $49 thousand, which is more than 2 times higher than the average indicator in the economy.

"If we speak in the industry context, the mining and metallurgical complex is the backbone of the domestic manufacturing industry. Last year it exported $19.3 billion worth of products, which is about 23% of the country's total exports. We have envisioned a mechanism to provide domestic enterprises with affordable raw materials. Agreements on the supply of primary aluminum and copper have been signed with major suppliers of raw materials," Prime Minister said.

He added that machine building continues to develop dynamically. Thus, in 2022 a record half a billion dollars of direct investments were attracted in the industry. In the first quarter of this year direct investments have already exceeded $208 million.

In the automotive industry, the volume of production last year amounted to 113 thousand units. For 8 months of this year, almost 100 thousand units were produced with growth of 41%. In value terms, it is more than 1 trillion tenge. Along with this, the production of construction materials in the RK also exceeded the trillion mark for the first time.

"All these indicators are reflected in the Concept of development of the manufacturing industry adopted this year. By 2030 we plan to ensure the growth of gross value added in 2.8 times, labor productivity in 1.8 times, export products worth $225 billion," Prime Minister said.

As Alikhan Smailov noted, a wide range of support tools was strengthened by the creation of the Industrial Development Fund, which has already financed investment projects worth more than 200 billion tenge. Projects for another 150 billion tenge are in the works. 

"Currently, the pool has more than 1 thousand projects in the mining and metallurgical complex, machine building, oil and gas chemical, chemical, pharmaceutical industries and other sectors. At the same time, the main priorities of cooperation are defined as deep processing, maximum localization, production of new products and export potential," the Prime Minister said.

At the same time, he emphasized that the formation of a new technological mode, including the transition from basic to complex production, requires legislative strengthening. For this purpose, the Government is improving approaches in terms of tax, budgetary and regulatory stimulation of economic activity of business.

For example, last year new approaches to the functioning of free economic zones were enshrined in legislation. The main emphasis in their activities is placed on the manufacturing sector with a combined regime. Among other things, investors have been given the right to buy out the leased land plot ahead of schedule, without looking back at the terms of the FEZ itself. 

In order to develop small and medium-sized businesses, small industrial zones are being created in the regions. Here, ready-made industrial premises will be leased for entrepreneurs. 

According to Alikhan Smailov, an important component of the industrial breakthrough should also be the widespread introduction of innovations and advanced technologies. According to UNCTAD (UN Conference on Trade and Development), the volume of the global market of new technologies in 2025 will amount to more than $3 trillion.

"Already today, artificial intelligence is being applied in all industries, helping to optimize the production cycle, fully automate processes, and manage control and safety. Therefore, flexibility and adaptation are required in such conditions," the Prime Minister emphasized. 

As Alikhan Smailov noted, against the background of the breakdown of global production chains, new benchmarks for investment flows are emerging, so it is necessary to effectively develop its competitive advantages. 

"In this regard, in our opinion, special attention should be paid to the development of regional value chains," he said.

Head of the Government added that another global trend remains digital transformation, which should be considered as a priority area for cooperation of the EAEU countries.

"Today, Kazakhstan has implemented large-scale projects in such areas as FinTech and GovTech. We have achieved a high level of penetration of digital solutions into everyday life. Now our task is to reach the same level in the real sector. The Autonomous Cluster Fund "Park of Innovative Technologies", IT-technopark "Astana Hub" and research centers at higher educational institutions are already actively involved here," Alikhan Smailov said. 

According to him, the most important factor in achieving the set goals is staffing. In this regard, work is being carried out in the republic to open branches of leading technological universities of near and far abroad.

"This will make it possible to train specialists with new views on the management of innovative projects and development of competencies, engineers of the future," the Prime Minister emphasized.

In conclusion, he noted that along with addressing the issues of industrial growth, the relevance of the environmental agenda should not be forgotten: emission control, introduction of clean technologies at production facilities, utilization and recycling of waste should be priorities in the activities of enterprises.

#Alikhan Smailov #The Prime Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan #Industry #International Cooperation

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