- Bilateral cooperation
- Press center
- Consular issues
The lifeblood of any developing economy is foreign direct investment (FDI). Nations need to attract outside capital to develop infrastructure and human resources, to spur economic growth in order to create better living conditions for their people. The process can be tricky, as governments grapple with legacy issues, like heavy state asset ownership, poor rule of law, corruption and misallocation of capital.
Central Asia is a part of the world where there is a lot of economic upside to be harvested, as China develops the new Silk Road, and natural resources production is on the rise. However, the region’s “soft infrastructure,” including regulatory institutions, capital markets, courts and regulatory frameworks can be improved.
As an anchor nation in the region, Kazakhstan is working hard to secure FDI through the launch of the Astana International Financial Center (AIFC), and the use of this innovative business hub to coordinate the effort to bring in foreign capital to raise revenue and improve the living standards of the Kazakh people.
This year and next, Air Astana, the oil and gas giant Kazmunaigaz and the national railroad all will see at least some of their shares float in this emerging capital market, with more companies from Kazakhstanand the region considering IPOs.
AIFC also boasts the first English law-based court and arbitration center in Eurasia. AIFC will deploy English common law for dispute resolution and has actually hired top-flight English judicial professionals to preside over the process, including Lord Harry Woolf, the former chief justice of England and Wales.
“Kazakhstan decided it would put its commercial legal system above reproach. In 2015, it imported a whole legal system from England, along with English common law, to deal with commercial issues. It also imported some English judges to sit on the bench,” wrote Norway News.
The arbitration facility based on English common law should give overseas investors more comfort when dealing with the Kazakh investment culture.
The AIFC is a unique undertaking to raise the attractiveness of investing in Kazakh projects by improving the rule of law, the financial sector infrastructure, the legislative base, and support for foreign investment.
“We must clearly understand that attracting foreign investment will develop the economy and allow us to solve the issue of the quality of life of the population, create new jobs and solve social issues,” said Prime Minister Askar Mamin in a note on April 22, as the government set up the Coordinating Council for Investment Attraction and appointed Mr. Mamin investment ombudsman, reported FDI Intelligence.