The Deputy Prime Minister Sums up the Results


ASTANA, Jan 20


On Thursday at a press conference held in Astana the government Prime Utembaev announced that in 1999 the national budget had been fulfilled by 94%, according to the preliminary data.

According to Utembaev, the final results in 1999 will be announced at the press conference of the Finance Minister Mazhit Yesenbaev that is to be held soon.

If we refer to the government�s press release, in the last year the Kazakhstani national budget gained taxes and other obligatory payments in the amount of 394 billion 772 million 658 thousand tenge, when it was expected to earn 427 billion 706 million 176 thousand tenge.

The difference in the budget revenues was observed in the following articles: the leasing fee for the Baikonur space-vehicle launching site that was not paid by Russia and privatization of the state property, Utembaev said.

The projected plan was overfulfiled due to tax and non-tax deductions that are in the competence of the Ministry of State Revenues (MSR).

We remind you that for the previous year the national budget earned 344 billion 161 million tenge (i.e. 101.3% of the projected figure) of tax and non-tax payments (except the leasing fee for Baikonur, which is out of the MSR competence).

The deputy of the Minister empathized �a very high� level of tax and non-tax collections by the MSR. In December the daily collection came to US$ 13 to 14 million. This was three times more than the budget daily gained in February and March, Utembaev stated.

The deputy also said that in 1999 the growth of GNP of Kazakhstan was 1.7%, of the industrial production � 2.2%, of the agriculture � over 27%. The annual inflation was 17.8%. In 2000 they plan to keep the annual inflation within 9%.

Besides, according to Utembaev, for 20 days of this year, the inflation was 1.4 to 1.5%.

The deputy of the Minister expects to achieve �high economic indices� in the first quarter 2000, if positive trends of the last quarter of 1999 are the same. He refers to the fact that at present they fulfill 130 to 160% of the plan by some kinds of taxes.

Non-state Accumulating Pension Funds Lose their Depositors

Whose Position does Nikolai Radostovets Present?



ALMATY, Jan 19


�Due to the attacks by the Minister of Labor and Social Protection against the non-state accumulating pension funds we receive the messages from Kazakhstani different enterprises about stormy reaction of workers,� Aidar Alibaev, the chairman of the Board of Directors of the Pension Funds Association, announced on Wednesday, January 19. Alibaev showed a letter of the chairman of the Ispat-Karmet trade union, which states that the Minister�s speech was perceived as the change of the government�� course regarding the pension reform. In the result, recently about 80 people submitted applications with the request to transmit their money to the State Pension Fund.

Alibaev asks the question: why after the two years of the pension reform the Minister creates an artificial negative opinion, and why the Minister has not yet answered to the question, whose position he presents � his own or of the government?

�The non-state pension funds are incurring losses and losing their depositors and their positive image is being destroyed. This does harm to the entire accumulating pension system,� Aidar Alibaev added.

At the press conference held in Astana on January 7 Radostovets said regarding the mechanism of the investment of the pension assets to the economy, that projects should not be financed directly, but through second-level banks. This is necessary for the banks to be responsible for projects ton which money from the non-state funds is invested, according to the Minister. Alibaev said that the above-mentioned facts prove that the Minister does not know how the investment process is realized today.

Aidar Alibaev emphasized that the Minister has not understood yet either the mechanism or the essence of the pension reform and continues to act rather by his intuition than professionally, rather by emotions than taking into consideration the real situation.

In conclusion Alibaev offered Radostovets to meet to discuss seriously further ways of development of the accumulating pension reform, the Minister�s perception of the pension reform, and to ask questions to each other.

The Worse, the Better,

Or an Issue of the 21st Century Newspaper


ALMATY, Jan 19


The issue of the 21st Century dated January 13, 2000 contained the article by Simus Martin from Irish Times. Foreign press often writes about Kazakhstan, but the common feature of many materials is a superficial analysis without any desire to understand what is happening in the republic.

Simus Martin followed this tradition. In the beginning of the article the author gives a very interesting idea that Nazarbaev was against the collapse of the USSR, as he expected himself to become the Russian President after Gorbachov.

According to Martin, President of Kazakhstan announcing that it is impossible to transport up to 28 million tons of oil to the Turkish port Ceykhan, took off chains of his dependence on Moscow. Probably, the author does not know that the priority is the CPC project that is being built today. The rest facts given in the article are alike, Martin reasons of Chechnya, and states that Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan belong to the Turkish group, but he considers Turkey separately.

Taking into consideration the name, the newspaper is published in Ireland, which is faraway from Kazakhstan. All above-mentioned nuances are hardly important for the population of this country.

But we wonder why editors of the periodical edition 21st Century published this article, but did not comment on obvious delusions of Martin?

If you read the whole issue of the newspaper, it will seem that its staff criticizing the Kazakhstani authorities are governed by the principle �the worse, the better.� So, the 21st Century republished the advertisement of cellular phones from the French magazine Challenges that contains the phrase �record to the equipped dictaphone: never fly by planes of the Azakhstan Airlines.� �Keen-witted� journalists understood at once that authors of the advertisement feared the claim by Air Kazakhstan and missed the first letter. But the most interesting invention of the 21st century staff is that while choosing a negative example for the advertisement the West�s ironic attitude to Kazakhstan that was the reaction to the efforts of the Nazarbaev�s regime to seem democratically respectful.

We have another question � did they need to make up this nonsense, when there is a lot of subjects to criticism. Even the Kazakhstani government said at the meeting that it was dangerous to fly by Air Kazakhstan planes. Why did they invent this about ironic attitude of the West toward Kazakhstan? Moreover, apart from President Nursultan Nazarbaev 15 million people live in the republic.

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