Kazakhstan is currently stepping up its efforts to attract foreign direct investment in order to further consolidate this position. To this end, the focus in recent years has been on creating an optimal environment for investors, which is now based on the principles of the rule of law, fairness and justice, transparency, ESG and the green economy.
Priorities have been set for the implementation of the new investment policy. These include the creation of new export-oriented and high-tech production sites through gradual regionalisation in Kazakhstan, and through integrating products into regional and global supply chains, ensuring domestic food security and developing the domestic market. Greater focus will be given to the development of manufacturing, whilst support for the raw materials sector will continue. Projects using innovative technologies in accordance with OECD standards in existing production facilities to develop “green technologies” and alternative energy sources (including hydrogen) will also be pursued.
Foreign investments are protected by the bilateral investment protection treaties. Such agreements provide a legal framework for cooperation by guaranteeing the rights of investors to conduct investment activities and help to improve the investment climate and further expand mutually beneficial trade and economic cooperation between countries. Austria and Kazakhstan concluded a BIT on 12 January 2021, which entered into force on 21 December 2012.
The forecasts for Kazakhstan’s future as a business location are optimistic: investments are expected from 59 multinationals from countries such as the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, France, the USA, the PR China, the Republic of Korea, Japan, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates. Gross foreign direct investment is estimated to reach 25.5 billion USD by 2026.
LGP has been active in Kazakhstan since 2009 and advises both Kazakh and European multinationals. LGP’s areas of expertise in Kazakhstan include corporate law, M&A, antitrust law, tax law, construction law, European and sanctions law, and labour law. In 2013, LGP acquired an Astana-based subsidiary, Lansky, Ganzger & Partner Kazakhstan LLP.