News Column

Kazakh President Orders Raid On Oil Fund To Support Growth

February 14, 2014



February 14, 2014

Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbaev has ordered the government and central bank to allot 1 trillion tenges ($5.4 billion) from the National Fund to support economic growth after the national currency, the tenge, was devalued by 19 percent earlier this week.

The National Fund collects windfall oil-export revenues.

At a cabinet session on February 14, Nazarbaev also urged the government not to allow price hikes and ordered a 10 percent increase in the salaries of employees of state companies.

Nazarbaev warned the cabinet that it might be replaced unless it "turns Kazakhstan into a paradise for investors."

The tenge's devaluation -- announced on February 11 -- sparked nationwide anxiety.

Dozens of protesters marched in Kazakhstan's business capital, Almaty, on February 12-13, demanding "proper explanations" for the devaluation and the resignation of National Bank Chairman Qairat Kelimbetov.

Based on reporting by Kazinform and Reuters

Copyright (c) 2011. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W.Washington DC 20036. www.rferl.org


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