Head of Kazakhstan for selling shares of major companies on the market

07.03.01 00:00
/IRBIS, March 7, 01/ - REUTERS informs that the president of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbaev is for the selling 10-20% of shares of national companies on the stock market, but he did not name which companies would they be. It is said that in Kazakhstan national companies are those where the government has 100% stake, and they are mostly natural monopolies. He said that Kazakhstani citizens should be able to invest their money into the best companies of the country. The interview is published today by the Kazakhstani supplement of the Russian newspaper Izvestiya. The government of Kazakhstan is said to have been developing the blue chips privatization program, which was meant to be initiate the sales of the shares of the most attractive companies on the stock market. However, financial crises made some corrections and officials were saying that it would be better to sell them to strategic, not portfolio investors. Azamat Djoldasbekov, the head of the National Securities Commission was insisting on selling the shares on the stock market and even suggested the country's president to sell non-blocking shares of national companies like Kazatomprom and KazTransGas. The blue chips program is said to have contained such companies as KEGOC (power supply), Kazakhoil, KazTransOil (oil production) and Kazakhstan Temir Joly (railroads). The president said that the country should strengthen its reputation as a serous borrower, and since it has entered an economic growth stage it has to increase the borrowing terms of the government bonds. He said that the possibilities of issuing eurobonds for seven or ten years denominated in U.S. dollars were being considered. Kazakhstan has conducted four issues of government bonds for $1.2 bln, he added. He mentioned that the country was among those with average income per capita level and moderate debt. As of Jan 1, 2001 the country's debt was at $3.89 bln, of which 84.4% is external debt, is said.