October 11, 2008

Kazakh Leader Urges Action to Develop Chemical Industry

Excerpt from report by state-owned Kazakh TV on 9 October

[Presenter] Kazakh chemical industry is underdeveloped despite a vast amount of natural resources in the country, the [Kazakh] president said this during his visit to Taraz [the administrative centre of southern Zhambyl Region] today.

[Passage omitted: President Nursultan Nazarbayev visited the Zhambyl Phosphor plant and held a meeting for government officials responsible for the development of the chemical industry]

[Nursultan Nazarbayev, captioned, in Russian with Kazakh translation overlaid] I do not see any state agency that supports this industry. All projects in this sphere are being implemented without participation of the state, though the chemical industry is not something new for our country. We do not have to invent anything new since both necessary resources and industrial facilities are at our disposal.

[Correspondent] Phosphorus is needed for production of fertilizers. Kazakhstan, thanks to its vast territory, could become the top first grain producer if it produced more fertilizers. Currently Kazakhstan exports various fertilizers worth 2bn dollars. Yet this is not a very large figure - chemical products comprise only 4 per cent of total Kazakh exports. Kazakh businessmen are ready to invest 5bn dollars in the industry in the next 3-4 years.

[Nursultan Nazarbayev, in Russian with Kazakh translation overlaid] If we manage to increase annual production of mineral fertilizers to 3m tonnes by 2014, it will create additional 15,000 jobs. On the other hand, this will require more of skilled workers. Thus, apart from increasing production, we must deal with the issue of bringing up skilled labour force because there is a shortage of specialists in the chemical industry.

[Correspondent] President Nazarbayev has ordered the government to provide the chemical industry with electricity and natural gas in full volume and support projects being implemented by the KazPhosphat plant.

[Passage omitted: the president also visited the Zhambyl metallurgical plant and some other facilities in the region]

Originally published by Kazakh Television first channel, Astana, in Kazakh 1400 9 Oct 08.

(c) 2008 BBC Monitoring Central Asia. Provided by ProQuest LLC. All rights Reserved.