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Kazakhstan: Latest Analysis KMG Streamlines Corporate Structure

Last week KMG CEO Sauat Mynbayev announced that the company is transforming its subsidiaries in order to reduce red tape. These reforms have been discussed for over two years but concrete details are only now emerging. Mynbayev said the company is planning to convert some of its subsidiaries to limited liability partnerships (LLPs) and pass

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Kazakhstan: Astana Expo: Initial Assessment

With much fanfare, on 9 June President Nursultan Nazarbayev opened the long-awaited Astana Expo 2017, which features the theme of “future energy.” The international exposition is the 25-year-old country’s most important public event, and arguably Nazarbayev’s as well. Kazakhstan has previously hosted large events, like the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) summit

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Kazakhstan: KMG-CNPC Gas Export MOU: Rationale and Outlook

On 7 June, Chinese President Xi Jinping started a four-day state visit to Kazakhstan, his third trip to the country. He is set to advance bilateral ties and attend the 17th meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Council and the opening ceremony of the World Expo in Astana. However, as this year marks the

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Kazakhstan: Outlook for KMG Privatization and Reform

On 10 May Kazakh Finance Minister Bakhyt Sultanov said that Air Astana, KazAtomProm and KMG remain on short list of state-controlled companies to be privatized, with 2019 as the latest possible completion date. This echoes the upbeat rhetoric of Umirzak Shukeyev, the head of the Samruk-Kazyna Welfare Fund (SK Fund), who since late 2016 has

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Kazakhstan: Challenges in the Refining Sector: Delays Ahead

This week the Kazakh Ministry of Energy released statistics showing that overall output of all fuels in Q1 2017 grew 17.5% year-on-year. However, even though imported fuels remained at about 30% of the total supply, rising demand caused imports to grow in absolute numbers.

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Kazakhstan: Buy High, Sell Low: Gas Distribution Company Hobbled by Regulations

Kazakhstan’s gas distribution sector is in need of significant reforms, as it is incurring increasingly severe losses. The main victim is KTGA, which controls 95% of the market in 10 gasified regions of the country and supplies gas to roughly 8mn consumers. (KTGA is the most important and most problematic asset of KTG.) Indeed, over

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Kazakhstan: Disagreements Over KTG’s Reform: The Growing Political Role of Gas Pipelines

At the end of April, KTG’s press service dismissed Kazakh media speculation about the transfer of KTG assets from KMG and the establishment of an independent new company called KazakhGas. In mid-April, mainstream media outlets had cited anonymous sources in KMG and KTG that KTG and its affiliate companies would be merged into a new

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Kazakhstan: Latest Oil Statistics: Flagship IOC Projects Crucial

KazMunayGas Exploration and Production (KMG EP) recently announced that its Q1 output for 2017 had decreased 4.6% year-on-year to 2.9mn tons per annum (mta). The decline was slower at KMG EP’s fields and greater in joint projects, especially those with Chinese partners.

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Kazakhstan: Prime Minister Sagintayev Visits the US

Prime Minister Bakytzhan Sagintayev paid an official visit to the US from 11-14 April at the behest of President Nursultan Nazarbayev, who wants to attract global business leaders to participate in his so-called “Third Modernization” of the Kazakh economy. This term dates to the president’s speech from last year in which he urged a technological

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Kazakhstan: Ministry of Energy Announces Major LPG Market Reform

On 10 April the Ministry of Energy held a briefing about the future of the LPG market in Kazakhstan. Ziyash Kiyakbaev, a director of the Department for Development of the Gas Industry, said that the ministry had introduced amendments that will bring about a gradual cancellation of state regulation of wholesale prices for LPG beginning