SPEECH BY THE PRESIDENT OF KAZAKHSTAN
AT THE OPENING OF
III SESSION OF THE FOURTH CONVOCATION OF THE PARLIAMENT
OF KAZAKHSTAN (SEPT. 1 ST )
The second session of Parliament was dedicated to the construction of a legislative framework to find rapid solutions to socio-economic problems and overcome the negative effects of the global financial crisis.
During the past period, US $19 billion were spent by the State for stabilization measures which corresponds to 14% of GDP. Today we see the positive results of the measures taken.
First, the social sphere was strengthened. We maintained all the Government's social obligations to our people. The implementation of the Regional Employment Strategy played an important role in this through the allocation of 191 billion tenge.
Currently, over 5000 investment projects are under way in the country regions, with 393 000 new jobs created. As a result, in the first half of this year, the real monetary income of the population increased. The volume of pension savings has reached 1680 billion tenge . Across the country, projects such as ‘100 Schools / 100 Hospitals' or ‘20 Smart Schools ' were implemented.
Secondly, we managed to reverse the negative trend of economic decline and to improve the situation in individual sectors of the economy. In particular, industrial production output grew by 3.1% in the second quarter of 2009, as compared to the first quarter. Thanks to the support of the State, more than 40,000 real estate investors addressed the issues at stake.
We have taken unprecedented steps on this issue.
The support we provided to the agricultural sector is also unprecedented. From January to July, the gross agricultural produce grew by 2.8% against the same period in 2008. Farmers have received over KZT 63 billion in State subventions. These subsidies enabled those working in the agricultural sector to succeed in their sowing campaigns and increase areas under crops by 1.6 million hectares.
Thirdly, the financial system of Kazakhstan has been stabilized. For the first seven months of this year, investments into the Kazakh economy grew by 7% on 2008.
Lending to the economy is stable and inflation is reduced.
On August 1st, 2009, total assets of banks exceeded 12 trillion tenge, having increased by 2% compared to last year. For the six past months, banks' loan portfolios increased by 10.6%. Our country's international reserves have stabilized at US $42.5 billion - and are still growing. The necessary work is being done regarding the refinancing of mortgage loans.
Fourthly, entrepreneurs received a significant support. S&MBs have been granted 134 billion tenge. The total programme benefited 2,500 small businesses. These enterprises have created 4,700 new jobs.
S&MB's production output grew by 19% in the first quarter of 2009 as compared to the first quarter of 2008.
According to international experts, Kazakhstan is leading the efficiency index of anti-crisis policies among CIS countries. The progressive development of Kazakhstan is also visible in the results of the population census that was conducted in February-March of this year.
The final results are still being analyzed, but preliminary results show that great changes have taken place in our society. The standard of living has increased. The monetary income of Kazakhstan 's citizens was multiplied by an average of almost five over the last ten years. We were able to reverse the negative demographic trend and ensure marked demographic growth.
In the last ten years, the population grew from 14.9 million to 16.3 million inhabitants.
We reached these results because of an increase in fertility and a decrease in mortality.
The census provided us with valuable data. This information allows us to plan the country's development well in advance.
Now, let us address the tasks of the forthcoming Parliament session…
We must not just overcome the period of difficulties but also prepare ourselves thoroughly to the post-crisis stage of development. This demands serious and complex renewal and modernization of our legislative system
Firstly, the Government must complete the elaboration of the programme for the development of the State until 2020 – and by that I mean for the next 10 years, divided into two five-year plans. This will be the next step of implementation of the ‘Kazakhstan- 2030' Development Strategy.
Global trends and changes should also be taken into consideration
In the decade to come, the efforts of the State and society must be focused on five principal directions:
- post-crisis rehabilitation of the economy;
- ensuring its stability;
- development of a competitive human capital;
- guaranteeing the population basic social housing and communal services;
- preservation of interethnic accord, security and stability of our foreign policy.
Secondly, we must strengthen the stability and competitiveness of the country's financial sector. The crisis has demonstrated the disadvantages of the existing financial systems for our country as well as on a global scale.
Today, following my directive, the concept of a national finance structure is under elaboration. It will reflect all of the issues related to the complex legislative improvement in banks activity, currency regulation and control. We have to reinforce the role of financial supervision, to change the insurance legislation and to higher the efficiency of the budget legislation. It is important that the budget becomes the main source of economic development. As a whole, our country's financial system must be directed towards the diversification of the economy and innovative industry growth.
It will be the main criteria for the appraisal of the financial system.
Thirdly, we must improve the investment and entrepreneurial climate in Kazakhstan . New systematic measures aimed at improving the business climate and supporting domestic producers are needed as never before. The system of business inspections should be optimized in the framework of the draft law on control and supervision of activity.
Fourthly, we need to develop the social sector field. MPs must introduce amendments relating to the social support to specific categories of citizens and to the law on education. Starting this year, young experts moving to rural areas will be paid a traveling allowance. In the next three years, KZT 14.3 billion will be allocated for this from the State budget.
Fifthly, administrative and legal reforms as well as further democratization of Kazakhstan 's society should become one of the key priorities of the Parliament's activity. I believe it is important to continue working on the consolidation of the legislation ensuring a real equality of rights for Kazakhstan 's citizens independent from their racial, national and religious origins. Human rights and freedom protection are another priority.
The elaboration and adoption of the legislation on gender equality, legislation on equal rights and equal opportunities, about the prevention and preclusion of domestic crimes – all of these will have great importance for our society.
Following my request, a new legal policy concept was elaborated. Based on this, the Republic of Kazakhstan 's legislation should be renewed, the lawmaking process strengthened and the process quality improved.
Dear members of Parliament,
Next year is very special for our country. It will be marked by an important historical event – Kazakhstan 's chairmanship of the OSCE. This honorary mission gives us a great responsibility as well as wide opportunities. Kazakhstani MPs will play an active part by working with their foreign colleagues and participating in the work of various OSCE groups, commissions and its Parliamentary Assembly.
We should use this opportunity to study the work experience of the Parliaments of the OSCE member-states to apply it practically in Kazakhstan .
It's our common duty to do everything possible to strengthen Kazakhstan 's authority and influence in international matters.
Dear members of Parliament,
This Parliamentary session will be intense…
The legislative preparation of a new stage in our country's development is our common task.
The Nur Otan party should lead this work.
Every Nur Otan MP must realize his/her own responsibility for the success of the cause.
I wish you harmonious work, the adoption of significant new laws, strengthening of our State, the confidence of each and every citizen of the Republic of Kazakhstan and a great future for its children!