Housing and utilities infrastructure wear and tear planned to be reduced by 20% on average in Kazakhstan

The issues of comprehensive modernization of the infrastructure of housing and communal services were discussed at the Republican headquarters for the implementation of the pre-election program of the Head of State under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Alikhan Smailov.

Minister of National Economy Alibek Kuantyrov reported that through the implementation of the program "Tariff in exchange for investment", developed on behalf of the President, the wear and tear of electricity, heat, water and wastewater networks in the republic is planned to reduce by an average of 20%. This will improve the quality of services provided to citizens and reduce the number of emergency shutdowns.

For this purpose it is required to repair more than 145 thousand km of engineering networks. In this regard, this year there will be a gradual change of tariffs for public utilities, taking into account the socio-economic situation in the regions. Due to which already this year it is planned to repair more than 5 thousand km of engineering networks and increase the salaries of workers of the housing and utilities sector.

As Minister of Industry and Infrastructural Development Marat Karabayev said, to reduce the cost of low-income citizens on public utilities, a partial reimbursement of expenses is provided within the housing assistance rendered by the state. The amendments were introduced late last year to increase the amount of compensation and the range of persons eligible for it. As of the end of the first quarter of 2023, 17,000 families received more than 372 million tenge in housing assistance.

Minister of Energy Almasadam Satkaliyev reported that together with the World Bank and international company KPMG conducted a technical audit of 56 thermal power plants in the country. As a result, a rating reflecting their technical condition and the main technical and economic indicators was compiled. By the end of the current month a comprehensive report with a plan of capital repair measures will be completed.

Akims of Kostanay Region Kumar Aksakalov, Karaganda Region Yermaganbet Bulekpayev, and Akmola Region Yermek Marzhikpayev reported on the work on repair of housing and utilities infrastructure, which is carried out in the regions.

Prime Minister stressed that taking into account the problems of the industry, the Head of State instructed to implement the program "Tariff in exchange for investments" aimed at modernization and overhaul of the entire life-support system of the country.

"To this end, we have adopted legislative amendments and regulations. Earlier we couldn't adjust investment programs and tariffs of natural monopoly entities. Now it is possible," Alikhan Smailov said.

At the same time, he pointed out that utility companies are slowly preparing the necessary documentation to adjust the tariff and start the process of modernization.

"Delaying this process is unacceptable. It is important for us to promptly begin the overhaul of networks and stations. This is a priority task. This is especially important for the northern regions, where the construction season is short and the heating season starts early," Prime Minister said.

Head of the Government stressed that the current situation is an omission on the part of the Ministry of National Economy. In this regard, Alikhan Smailov made a verbal reprimand to the head of the department Alibek Kuantyrov, and also reprimanded the chairman of the Committee for Regulation of Natural Monopolies Assan Darbayev for insufficient coordination work.

"You know that from the President and the population on a regular basis we hear fair criticism about the quality of services provided. We must not allow the emergency situation of last winter in the upcoming heating season. The demand will be tough," Alikhan Smailov said.

In conclusion, the Prime Minister instructed to promptly organize the submission of applications of utility companies to adjust the tariff in order to modernize the infrastructure, by the end of June to complete a technical inspection of heating networks to repair them, as well as to ensure the development of design and estimate documentation for construction and installation work planned for 2024 by the end of the year.

#Alikhan Smailov #The Prime Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan #Housing and Utilities #Presidential election program

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