Gross National Product (GNP): Estimated 1993
at US$26.5 billion, or US$1,530 per capita. In 1994 estimated
growth rate -25.4 percent. In early 1990s, growth hindered by
Soviet-era specialization and centralization, slow privatization.
Agriculture: Large-scale misallocation of land
in Soviet Virgin Lands program, emphasizing cultivation over livestock,
con-tinues to distort land use. Main crops wheat, cotton, and
rice; main livestock products meat and milk. State farms continue
to dominate, 1996; land privatization minimal.
Industry and Mining: Outmoded heavy industry
infrastructure inherited from Soviet era, specializing in chemicals,
machinery, oil refining, and metallurgy; coal, iron ore, manganese,
phosphates, and various other minerals mined. Some light industry.
Industrial productivity hampered by lost markets and enterprise
Energy: Plentiful reserves of oil, coal, and
natural gas make energy production dominant industrial sector.
Offshore Caspian Sea fields, in early production stages, have
huge capacity; extraction expanding with Western investment and
new pipeline project. Natural gas fields, notably Karachaganak,
will expand output in later 1990s. Thermoelectric power plants,
main source of power, fueled by lignite mines. Kazakstan remains
net importer of energy and fuel, 1995.
Exports: Mainly raw materials: metals, oil and
petroleum products, chemicals, worth US$3.08 billion in 1994;
share of bartered goods, substantial in early 1990s, smaller in
1995 and mainly with Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS)
partners. Cash sales to CIS partners increased substantially in
1995, partially replacing barter. Export structure shifting steadily
to non-CIS partners, mid-1990s, as Western oil sales increase;
non-CIS expansion needed to balance imports for industrial restructuring.
Imports: In 1994, worth US$3.49 billion, mainly
energy products, machinery, vehicles, chemicals, and food. Industrial
machinery and technology imports will increase, energy products
decrease, in late 1990s. Trade deficits with both CIS and non-CIS
groups, 1994. Main trading partners Russia, Ukraine, Germany,
Netherlands, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Italy, and China.
Balance of Payments: In 1994, deficit of US$2.5
Exchange Rate: Tenge introduced November 1993
when Kazakstan left ruble zone. Exchange rate sixty-four to US$1,
Inflation: Hyperinflation, 1993 and 1994, brought
under better control with tightened loan policy; estimated 1995
annual rate 190 percent.
Fiscal Year: Calendar year.
Fiscal Policy: Centralized system; fundamental
streamlining of tax code, 1995, emphasizing taxation of individuals
over taxation of enterprises. Targeted 1995 budget shortfall 3.5
percent of gross domestic product (GDP).
Data as of March 1996