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OECD Territorial Reviews: Kazakhstan

image of OECD Territorial Reviews: Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan has experienced a long period of high and sustained economic growth, largely driven by oil and gas exports. However, the drop in 2014 of the international price of oil highlighted the risks of dependence on natural resource activities. Kazakhstan must diversify its economic base to ensure that it can continue to “catch up” and move into higher value-added goods and services. This review looks at how a modern approach to regional development can help Kazakhstan by mobilising the growth potential of different parts of the economy and territory, supporting economic diversification and reducing regional inequalities.

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Executive summary

The Republic of Kazakhstan, home of 17.5 million inhabitants has experienced a long period of high and sustained economic growth with a steady increase in GDP per capita and, in turn, improving overall socio-economic conditions. The exports of oil and gas resources have been a key driver of these positive trends. The share of growth generated by regions specialised in extractive activities and financial and insurance services contribute 72% of the total, while the remaining regions contribute 28%. Against this backdrop the decline in 2014 of the international price of oil highlighted the risks of dependence on natural resource activities. Furthermore, regions specialised in extractive industries have performed well, but benefits have not accrued to other sectors and regions.

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