Kazakhstan

Polish-Kazakh Business Forum

An interview with Mr. Meirzhan Yussupov, Chairman of the Board of the “National Company” KAZAKH INVEST” JSC - Member of the Board of Directors of the Company

Instytut Boyma 01.11.2021

Warsaw, October 6, 2021

Polish-Kazakh Business Forum

An interview with Mr. Meirzhan Yussupov, Chairman of the Board of the “National Company” KAZAKH INVEST” JSC – Member of the Board of Directors of the Company by Magdalena Sobańska-Cwalina, Ph.D., Boym Institute, Member of the Board, Warsaw, Poland

MSC: Let’s make a quick start. Why Polish entrepreneurs should invest in Kazakhstan?

M.Y.: There are many good reasons. Firstly, the market access. Kazakhstan is the part of the Eurasian Economic Union, so you can consider a 180 million consumer market. Secondly, perfect geographical location. The shortest land connection between Western Europe and China passes through Kazakhstan. We have China on the other side of the border. From Almaty – the former capital of Kazakhstan – there is two to three hours of driveway to the Chinese border. Thirdly, if you conduct a capital investment to Kazakhstan, we have attractive government incentives, such us various tax breaks, subsidies, and plug-and-play infrastructure provided by the government. Fourthly, our population is growing in demographic terms. In terms of UN Human Development Index, we occupy a much higher place compared to our neighbors. We have well educated population which provide quality services at affordable price. Moreover, our country is rich in natural resources and raw materials. Last but not least is political stability. If you take a look at around Kazakhstan, our country is a safe haven for investors.

Magdalena Sobańska-Cwalina (M.S-C): How Poland as a country and Polish products are perceived in your country?

M.Y.: As you can see from the outstanding turnout at the Polish-Kazakh business forum, Polish business is popular in Kazakhstan. And vice versa. Polish goods are regarded very well in Kazakhstan. For example, although we consider Kazakhstan a birthplace of apples, Polish fruits are still exported to Kazakhstan. This shows how well advanced the Polish technology is in terms of agricultural sector. We know also Polcotton very well, an investor to greenhouses in Central Asia. We have also other Polish projects in Kazakhstan like Polpharma which is the pharmaceutical company with a well-established production in our country.

M. S-C.: If a Polish company would like to start a business in Kazakhstan what do they need to know first?

M.Y.: The Kazakh government is putting a lot of efforts to enhance the business climate. We are #25 overall and #22 in terms of easiness of starting a business according to the World Bank’s Doing Business Report. I would advise anyone who is planning to start a business in Kazakhstan to contact KAZAKH INVEST so that we can advise. We also give a hand in finding a local partner in Kazakhstan.

For potential investors we provide comprehensive country information, plus sectoral reviews, and what is important specific investment projects prepared by our team together with international consultants.

Then we organize targeted visits to Kazakhstan. We set up meeting with central government bodies and local authorities. We have representatives in all regions. Important service is business matchmaking, we assist in searching for a strong local partner.

Then we assist in structuring of investment projects providing various options for financing. We guide investors all the way through the project implementation stage. And even after a successful launch, we provide continuous service support on the questions investors may have in doing business in Kazakhstan.

M. S-C.: What are the common mistakes foreign companies make in Kazakhstan?

Many of those mistakes are related to the market. Firstly, all businessmen conduct analysis prior making investments. Sometimes there is a market mismatch: there is not enough market for their products. Secondly, you should carefully think about logistics and local raw materials availability. Therefore, knowledge of the market is essential. If investors come to the KAZAKH INVEST, we help them with market research. It would be also wise to invest in hiring various specialized companies that do real kind of in-depth analysis of that market for their specific products

M.S-C.: What are priority sectors in which you would like to see Polish investors?

M.Y.: There is a large list of priority sectors, including agribusiness, mining, metallurgy, petrochemical industry, infrastructure, renewable energy and others. But personally, I would like to highlight agribusiness given the potential of Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan is among Top 5 countries globally in terms of potential for growth of agriculture sector. The government is putting a lot of emphasis to attract even more investments in agriculture and food processing. More concretely, feed mills for growing the cattle or greenhouse projects are on top the list. The pandemics demonstrates that food security is essential. We see a lot of interest in investing in Kazakhstan, for consumption domestically and for exports to other markets, e.g. China.

MSC: Both Poland and Kazakhstan have problems with the inefficient water use. Isn’t it a platform for future cooperation?

M.Y.: We are very concerned about the amount of water consumed by irrigation systems in Kazakhstan. The government devotes a lot of attention on how to save water using the modern irrigation technologies. Therefore, we are interested in cooperation with Polish companies on this matter.

M.S-C: Aren’t you afraid of the competition from your southern neighbor, Uzbekistan? The reforms started there may make it more attractive for foreign investors than it was before.

M.Y.: Competition is always good. For so many years we have been the leader in terms of foreign direct investment, in absolute numbers. If someone is doing better than before and wants to compete that gives additional impetus for us to become even better. Many entrepreneurs are investing to the southern part of Kazakhstan, which provides direct access to the entire growing market of Central Asia.

M.S-C: What are the main results of today’s business forum?

M.Y.: We have signed seven documents between Poland and Kazakhstan. It is by far the largest business event during the last four years. There is a very high interest from the Polish business community in terms of investing in Kazakhstan, as well as a strong Kazakh demand for meeting Polish business. We have a lot of positive feedback; I am sure we laid strong foundations for future partnerships.

 

On October 5, 2021, the Polish-Kazakh Business Forum was held in Warsaw, during which 7 bilateral documents were signed on the implementation of projects in Kazakhstan worth about $ 445 million.

 

 

 

 

 

Magdalena Sobańska-Cwalina

Central Asia analyst, member of the Board of Directors of the Michal Boym Institute for Asian and Global Studies Foundation, PhD in economics (topic of doctoral dissertation: "Institutional determinants of the activity of Polish companies of the building materials industry in eastern markets"). Privately, she is passionate about classical music.

czytaj więcej

Book review: “North Korean Defectors in a New and Competitive Society”

Book review of "North Korean Defectors in a New and Competitive Society", written by Lee Ahlam - assistant professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Human Resource Development at Xavier University Cincinnati, Ohio.

Workshop – Liberalism vs authoritarianism: political ideas in Singapore and China

We cordially invite you to a workshop session “Liberalism vs authoritarianism: political ideas in Singapore and China”. The workshop is organized by Patrycja Pendrakowska and Maria Kądzielska at the Department of Philosophy, University of Warsaw on ZOOM.

The Boym Institute contribution to the Transcultural Caravan project

We are pleased to announce, that our analysts and contributors are among authors of the newest publication - "European Perspectives on the New Silk Roads – A Transcultural Approach".

Online Course: “Feminism and Democracy: a Deep Dive”

The course will be taught via interactive workshops, employing the Adam Institute’s signature “Betzavta – the Adam Institute’s Facilitation Method“, taught by its creator, Dr. Uki Maroshek-Klarman. The award-winning “Betzavta” method is rooted in an empirical approach to civic education, interpersonal communication and conflict resolution.

Online Course: “Conflict Resolution and Democracy”

The course will be taught via interactive workshops, employing the Adam Institute’s signature “Betzavta – the Adam Institute’s Facilitation Method“, taught by its creator, Dr. Uki Maroshek-Klarman. The award-winning “Betzavta” method is rooted in an empirical approach to civic education, interpersonal communication and conflict resolution.

China’s Social Credit System – How will it affect Polish enterprises in China?

The Social Credit System currently being rolled out in China may pose significant organisational and legal challenges for both foreign and Polish entities operating in China. We invite you to read our report, prepared in cooperation between the Boym Institute and Kochanski & Partners.

Development strategies for Ulaanbaatar according to the conception for the city’s 2040 General Development Plan- part 1

In the first part of this analysis of Ulaanbaatar’s winning 2040 General Development Plan Conception (GDPC) I look into the historical preconditions for the city’s planned development as well as present the legislative climate in which works on Ulaanbaatar’s future development strategies have recently found themselves.

Patrycja Pendrakowska made it to the Top 40 under 40 Europe-India leaders list

#EuropeIndia40, an initiative of EICBI, covers the stories of leaders below the age of 40 and their contributions to promoting EU India / UK India relations.

Globalization of business, education and China: interview with prof. Chiwen Jevons Lee

Interview of Ewelina Horoszkiewicz with prof. Chiwen Jevons Lee on China on globalization of Chinese business education and his thoughts of China’s role in the global marketplace.

Dr Krzysztof Zalewski participates in the Kigali Global Dialogue in Rwanda

A short note and photo gallery from the chairman of the Board of the Boym Institute, who stays in Rwanda at the "Kigali Global Dialogue" conference.

#WomeninBoym Initiative

At the Boym Institute we are coming out with new initiative: #WomeninBoym, which aims to show the activity of this – often less visible – half of society. We will write about what women think, say and do. We will also publicise what women are researching and writing.

Patrycja Pendrakowska as a participant of Women Economic Forum (WEF) in India

The interactive discussion covers recent projects and collaborations which have contributed to a greener economy in India

Are Polish Universities Really Victims of a Chinese Influence Campaign?

The Chinese Influence Campaign can allegedly play a dangerous role at certain Central European universities, as stated in the article ‘Countering China’s Influence Campaigns at European Universities’, (...) However, the text does ignore Poland, the country with the largest number of universities and students in the region. And we argue, the situation is much more complex.

Roman Catholic cemetery in Harbin (1903-1958)

First burials of Catholics, mostly Poles but also other Non-Orthodox believers took place in future Harbin in the so called small „old” or later Pokrovskoe Orthodox cemetery in the future European New Town quarter and small graveyards at the military and civilian hospitals of Chinese Eastern Railway at the turn of XIX and XX century.

Join us for the Adam Institute’s Latest Online Course

Conflict resolution models have been primarily crafted and codified by men. The Adam Institute for Democracy and Peace invites you to be part of that much-needed change through an experiential and innovative Online Course "Conflict Resolution in the Context of Gender".

Book review: “North Korea’s Cities”

Book review of "North Korea’s Cities", written by Rainer Dormels and published byJimoondang Publishing Company in 2014.

“Green growth” may well be more of the same

Witnessing the recent flurry of political activity amid the accelerating environmental emergency, from the Green New Deal to the UN climate summits to European political initiatives, one could be forgiven for thinking that things are finally moving forward.

Patrycja Pendrakowska as a founding member of the WICCI’s India-EU Business Council

By sharing knowledge, business opportunities, and best practices the Council generates awareness of women's contributions in developing the India-EU relations.

Online Course: “Educational tools for addressing the effects of war”

The Adam Institute for Democracy and Peace is offering “Betzavta” facilitators, middle school and high school educators, social activists, communal activists and those assisting refugees an online seminar to explore educational issues related to wartime.

Indian Roundtable – Poland’s Challenges and Opportunities in the Subcontinent

In recent years, India has been the fastest growing among the major countries' economies in the world. (...) In the coming decades, the Subcontinent's largest country may remain one of the pillars of global economic growth. This is one of the reasons why the country is already the most popular destination for Polish foreign investment in the Asian-Pacific region.

Krzysztof Zalewski for Observer Research Foundation – “Luxembourg faces the same dilemma as the EU: become a bridge or a fortress”

We would like to inform, that Observer Research Foundation has published article of Krzysztof Zalewski - the Boym Institute Analyst, Chairman of the Board and Editor of the “Tydzień w Azji” weekly.

Chinese work on the military use of artificial intelligence

Intensive modernization and the desire to catch up with the armed forces of the United States made chinese interest in the military application of futuristic technologies grow bigger.

Dr. Nicolas Levi with a lecture in Seoul

On May 24 Dr. Nicolas Levi gave a lecture on Balcerowicz's plan in the context of North Korea. The speech took place as part of the seminar "Analyzing the Possibility of Reform and its Impact on Human Rights in North Korea". The seminar took place on May 24 at the prestigious Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea.

Online Course: “Conflict Resolution and Democracy”

The course will be taught via interactive workshops, employing the Adam Institute’s signature “Betzavta – the Adam Institute’s Facilitation Method“, taught by its creator, Dr. Uki Maroshek-Klarman. The award-winning “Betzavta” method is rooted in an empirical approach to civic education, interpersonal communication and conflict resolution.