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Potential of tourism industry and agricultural exports: How did Almaty region develop in 2018

07 February 2019, 18:30

President’s Address to the people of Kazakhstan states that the well-being of citizens depends primarily on the steady growth of income and quality of life. The government is taking comprehensive measures to ensure further socio-economic development. Read the review of on the implementation of the Head of State’s instructions in the Almaty region.

Almaty region is located in the southeast of Kazakhstan. The area of ​​the territory is 223.9 thousand km², where 777 settlements are located. The population of the region is 2,037,393 people (as of Dec. 1, 2018). The regional center is the city of Taldykorgan.

According to the regional akimat, the development of the regional economy in 2018 is characterized by positive dynamics in all sectors. Growth of gross regional product is within 3.5%.


Expanding exports and building trade and logistics hub: Development of agriculture

Traditionally, the Almaty region is famous for its high level of development of agriculture, in the context of the republic the region leads in the provision of its own agricultural products. Moreover, the agro-industrial complex is the driver of the regional economy. Today, the region provides 16% of the national gross output of agriculture.

Crop growing is actively developed, the sugar production has been restored and expanded, close attention is paid to horticulture and the processing of products. All this attracts additional investment and creates additional jobs for residents of the region. Moreover, in the development of agriculture it is planned to intensify the mechanism of public-private partnership, especially in the dairy farming and potato industries.

The implementation of all planned measures will make it possible by 2021 to increase the volume of gross agricultural output by almost 200 billion tenge, that is, an increase of 1.3 times will be achieved.

To use the full potential of the agro-industrial complex, a regional program has been developed, which identifies nine priority areas (meat and dairy cattle, sheep, sugar beet, oil and fat, horticulture, potato, greenhouse and water management).

As part of crop diversification, areas of sugar beet (by 2,000 hectares), corn (1,453 hectares), forage crops (1,215 hectares) and vegetables (707 hectares) were increased.

Gross yield of sugar beet increased by 32% and amounted to 440 thousand tons. Individual farms received more than 700-800 centners per hectare, an average of 400 centners per region. The two sugar factories plan to produce 42 thousand tons of sugar, with a regional demand of 30 thousand tons. In the future, it is planned to introduce two more sugar factories, negotiations are underway with potential investors.

After introducing advanced technologies, a record harvest of corn in the last 27 years of 532 thousand tons has been obtained.

Thus, farmers of the Panfilov district using drip irrigation from one hectare receive up to 120 centners, which is two times higher than the average yield in the region. After modernization, the capacity of the Zharkent starch mill increased from 10 to 135 thousand tons, a cycle of waste-free processing of corn was ensured, and production of 27 types of products was adjusted.

In 2018, the first crop was harvested from intensive gardens, the area of ​​which reached 2.4 thousand hectares (the total area of ​​the gardens is 24.2 thousand hectares). In general, the gross harvest of fruits is 126 thousand tons, of which 65 thousand tons are apples.

The region began to develop a new direction — industrial potato. In the Kegen and Rayymbek districts, 100 hectares of elite varieties of potatoes were sown, two service and procurement centers were created with the acquisition of 21 units of equipment. By 2020, the area of ​​sowing will be 4.5 thousand hectares, 135 thousand tons of seed material of high-yielding varieties of potatoes will be harvested, which will be sown all other areas. In general, the gross harvest of potatoes is planned to increase from 722 thousand to 800 thousand tons, which will provide raw materials for the Farmfritz potato processing plant that is planned to be launched (70 thousand tons of products per year).

The number of livestock and its products increased by an average of 3.7%. There are 97 functioning feedlots, beef production has increased by 7%, 1 thousand tons have been exported. Construction of five meat-processing plants with a total capacity of 91 thousand tons is underway (Empire Food for 8 thousand tons, Lunyuan Zhetysu and Kaiynda for 16 thousand tons, Inalca for 21 thousand tons and Bauman for 30 thousand tons).

For the development of dairy farming seven family dairy farms were created in 2018, in total there are 70 that produce 20% of milk in the region. By 2021, due to the creation of family dairy farms, it is planned to ensure a full load of milk plants with quality milk.

Exports of agricultural products grew by 37% ($57 million) due to the growth in exports of soybean, sunflower, malt, starch products, fish and fish products. Honey has been exported to China under the brand "Lepsinsk Onimderi," greenhouse vegetables of Green Land Alatau LLP are delivered to Russian markets.

A meeting was held with the French company Rungis on the construction of a trade and logistics hub with a capacity of 1,000 trucks a day with an investment of 32.3 billion tenge. They will buy products from commodity producers of the Almaty region without intermediaries and recycle. The project will begin in 2019.

In general, the implementation of the program of the agro-industrial complex will allow fulfilling the instructions of the President to increase labor productivity and export of processed agricultural products by 2.5 times by 2022 (labor productivity: 2017 — 1,534 thousand tenge, 2022 — 3,834 thousand tenge).


Food industry: Enterprises of Almaty region meet the needs of whole country

Industrial production reached 884 billion tenge with a growth of 1.1%. This is more than in 2018 by 88 billion tenge.

In the manufacturing industry, almost half is the production of food and beverages. Thus, the dairy products of the companies Foodmaster, Adal, Raimbek Agro, Danone, JLC Sut are in demand in all regions of the republic. Six major manufacturers produce about 1 billion liters of natural juices and soft drinks per year, which allows to fully meet the needs of Almaty and the republic as a whole.

In 2017, 40 enterprises modernized production, which made it possible to increase export trade by 23.5% ($274.2 million). In total, 21 enterprises are engaged in export, but their number is increasing. Thus, in the top 10 imported goods of the manufacturing industry of the republic, enterprises of the Almaty region can produce seven types. The additional funds announced in the Address to support the manufacturing industry and non-primary exports of 1 trillion rubles will enable enterprises to increase exports and import substitution further.

It should be noted that attracting investment gives a powerful impetus to the development of industry in the region. According to the akimat of the Almaty region, today the region has a portfolio of 306 investment projects for 5.7 trillion rubles with the creation of more than 32 thousand jobs. There are nine projects with the participation of transnational companies, 44 — with foreign participation, which directly meets the tasks set by the Head of State.

So, in August 2018, the first in Kazakhstan complex for the production of pumping equipment of the German company WILO was opened. In addition, on the Industrialization Day, the MarevenFood plant was launched to manufacture products under the Rollton and BiGBON brand with its own logistic and warehouse infrastructure. The annual volume will be 21 billion tenge. They will export up to 80% of their products to the countries of Central Asia.

Among investment projects there is also a plant for the production of lubricants of the Russian company Lukoil. A feature of the project is a fully automated system of smart warehouse and production line. Pre-commissioning work has already begun.

Most industrial enterprises are located in six industrial zones, which are fully provided with engineering infrastructure. Forty-nine projects worth 341 billion tenge are being implemented here with the creation of 4.6 thousand jobs.

A separate role in the development of the regional economy is assigned to the Khorgos-Eastern Gate Special Economic Zone, which is a major transport and logistics hub at the crossroads of commodity flows between China, Central Asia and the countries of the Eurasian Union. Twelve projects worth 470 billion tenge are being implemented on the territory of the economic zone with the creation of about four thousand jobs.

By the end of 2018, the volume of investments amounted to 574.3 billion tenge, of which 80% — non-budgetary funds (460 billion tenge).


Productive employment: Creation of 31 thousand jobs and higher wages for low-paid workers

Today every fourth citizen of the region works in the small and medium business. They produce almost a third of the gross regional product, the amount of tax revenues increased 1.5 times (from 66 to 97 billion).

In 2018, the regional administration made a commitment to open 100 new facilities of various capacities in the field of trade, services and processing of agricultural products. All 100 planned facilities are open and 2034 jobs created.

The state provides great support to entrepreneurs and creates all conditions for successful business. As part of the Business Road Map 2020, 4.4 billion tenge was allocated, 228 subjects received support.

In addition, as part of the program of productive employment and mass entrepreneurship, 1,339 people received microcredits for 6.2 billion tenge.

In general, in 2018 over 31 thousand jobs were created in the region. In the framework of the implementation of the Head of State’s Address with all enterprises of the region, work was done to increase the wages of low-paid workers.

About 79.4 thousand workers at 43,503 enterprises receive a minimum wage. More than 14 thousand employers have already expressed willingness to increase wages to 32 thousand employees. The salary of 41 thousand employees of budgetary organizations will grow by an average of 35%.

From Jan. 1, 2019, 133.5 thousand people receive an increased salary, which is a manifestation of business support for the initiative to reduce the tax burden voiced by the President.

From the early 2019, the average monthly salary in the region increased by 5%. Real incomes of the population increased by 0.8%.


Tourism Potential

Special attention is paid to the development of the tourism industry in the Almaty region. In the end of 2018, the number of tourists reached 2 million, of which 1 million were in Alakol. This was made possible thanks to the targeted development of the coast of lake Alakol with the provision of transport accessibility and recreation areas, not inferior to foreign counterparts.

Following the working visit of the Head of State in May 2018, a plan for the further development of the coast was developed. Planned reconstruction of the runway, shore protection work, as well as the construction of water supply and sewerage networks.

Akimat of the region notes: an example of lake Alakol shows that ensuring transport accessibility is the key to attracting tourists. In this regard, the roads to lakes Kolsay, Charyn canyon have been built and a large project on the reconstruction of 140 km of roads to lake Balkhash was launched.


Infrastructure development: Affordable housing and high-quality roads

Within the framework of the Nurly Zhol program, the roads of the region that meet world standards were built: Western Europe – Western China (304 km), Almaty – Taldykorgan (260 km). Up to 30 billion tenge is annually allocated for the construction and repair of local roads.


According to the Nurly Zher program, in 2018, 72 residential buildings were commissioned (with a total area of ​​34.3 thousand m² and 468 apartments). In total, 713.2 thousand square meters of housing was commissioned in the region.

To implement the new mortgage program 7-20-25, 26 land plots where it is planned to build 2,509 residential houses with a total area of ​​3.8 million m² (103.7 thousand apartments) were chosen.

To reduce the down payment, it is planned to allocate annually 1 billion tenge for housing certificates to health workers, teachers and police officers.

Extending the implementation of the Nurly Zhol and Nurly Zher state programs until 2025 will provide 100% coverage with centralized water supply, raise the level of roads in good condition from 77% to 90%, and increase the housing capacity per person to 26 m².

One of the important directions of the Address is the improvement of settlements, yards for comfortable living of citizens.

For these purposes, the region allocates annually up to 11 billion tenge, this work is already underway and will be continued. Thus, in the cities of Taldykorgan and Kapshagay, in two years, 89 yards were equipped.


Gas supply: 142 settlements have natural gas

According to the regional akimat, the construction of intracity networks in Taldykorgan continues, a gas pipeline to Tekeli has been commissioned, and construction of three automated gas distribution stations (Bakanas, Ushtobe, Saryozek) is being completed.

In general, gas supply works in the region are carried out in 14 districts. Distribution gas networks are built through private investment. In 2018, 13.9 billion tenge was allocated from the budget and 36 billion tenge of private investment was attracted, i.e., about 1 tenge of private funds accounted for 1 tenge of budget funds.

142 settlements have natural gas, the level of gas supply is 30%.


Accessible education: Solving the issue of three-shift education

The Head of State set the task of improving the quality and accessibility of education, health care, and comfortable and safe living for each family.

The key task in education for the Almaty region is to eliminate the three-shift training. In 2018 nine schools were commissioned, of which two are for 1,200 places in the city of Taldykorgan, including the IT school-lyceum. Also in the regional center a new building for a children's music school with 300 places with a separate concert hall was built.

The region is successfully fulfilling the task of 100% coverage of children with preschool education. In 2018, 139 private kindergartens were opened and the level of coverage reached 98%. In total, out of 730 kindergartens, 547 are private (75%).

Considering the importance of child safety, today in 1,092 or 69% of educational institutions video surveillance cameras are installed, in 2019 coverage will be increased to 100%.

As part of the President's initiative on the construction of seven college dormitories, land plots have been identified, design estimates are being developed.


Healthcare system goes digital

In the health sector, the focus is on increasing the availability of primary health care, especially in rural areas.

This question is critical since 80% of the population lives in rural areas.

Fifteen facilities have been built and five — overhauled. In December 2018, the first situational center for early detection of cancer in the republic was opened in Taldykorgan. A project on the reconstruction and operation of the Positron Emission Tomography Center is planned for 2020.

The introduction of a medical information system is being completed, 1.5 million electronic health passports have been registered, the population coverage is 83%. Since 2018, the Komek 103 system has been launched, which reduced the time of arrival of ambulance in rural areas to 15 minutes, and in cities — to seven.

Within the framework of the Address, it is entrusted to build at least 100 sports and recreation centers throughout in the country. Six sports centers have already been built In the region in 2018, seven more were under construction, two of them were commissioned, the design estimate documentation is being developed on five centers.

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