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Kazakh Senate Ratifies Amendments to IMF Articles of Agreement

Friday 6 March 2015

ASTANA – Upper house of Kazakhstan’s parliament, the Senate, has ratified today the amendments to the Articles of Agreement of the International Monetary Fund. Board of Governors of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved a package of reforms of the Fund’s quotas and governance.

These reforms represent a major realignment in the ranking of quota shares that better reflects global economic realities, and a strengthening in the Fund’s legitimacy and effectiveness. The reforms protect the quota shares and voting power of the poorest members.

In addition, Board of Governors of IMF adopted the Articles of Agreement to Expand the Investment Authority of IMF. The amendment expands the authority of the Fund regarding the use of currencies and investments. The amendments to the IMF Articles of the Agreement on Fourteenth General Review of Quotas and Reform of the executive board was approved.

Reforms should aim at improving the business climate, promoting job creation, bolstering human capital and institutions, and reducing state intervention in the economy. These efforts should also make the implementation of the announced fiscal stimulus measures more effective. In the context of regional and global economic integration, Kazakhstan is joining the Eurasian Economic Union, launched in January 2015, while extending cooperation with the OECD and the European Union, and finalizing WTO accession.

Growth is slowing down from 6.0% in 2013 to 4.3% in 2014, driven by weaker domestic and external demand (especially from Russia, China, and Europe), continued regional uncertainty, as well as falling oil prices. Despite the recently announced fiscal stimulus measures, sustained weakness in global outlook, including lower oil prices, as well as production delays in the Kashagan oil field are expected to keep growth at around 4½ -5½ percent in 2015-16. Risks to the outlook are predominantly on the downside, mostly related to oil prices and regional uncertainty.

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