2012-11-14 23:33:56 - Kazakhstan and Central Asia Business Forecast Report Q4 2012 - a new country guide report on companiesandmarkets.com
Kazakhstan will continue to enjoy robust economic growth through 2012 and 2013, underpinned by ongoing development of the nation´s vast natural resource base. We forecast real economic growth of 5.8% in 2012 and 6.3% in 2013. While we acknowledge its vast economic potential and the concurrent opportunities for investors, we remain concerned about Kazakhstan´s long-term political stability. Political power is concentrated in the hands of the 72-year-old President Nursultan Nazarbayev and the country´s investment appeal could be undermined if no clear process for his succession materialises.
Major Forecast Changes
We forecast Kazakhstan´s real GDP growth to slow to 5.8% in 2012, a slight downward revision from our previous forecast for 6.1% growth previously. Relatively high oil prices will continue to boost
domestic demand and public investment, somewhat counteracting the continued slowdown in global demand. However, we caution that risks to this outlook are firmly to the downside, with macroeconomic headwinds prevailing from the slowdown in China and the persistent eurozone sovereign debt crisis.
Key Risks To Outlook
Commodity Prices: Our growth forecasts would face downside risks if there were a marked drop in commodity prices, as Kazakhstan is economically dependent upon its extractive industries. We expect gradual moderation in oil prices through 2012, and this is reflected in our current growth and inflation forecasts. However, if a dramatic drop in oil prices were to materialise (most likely as a result of a negative macroeconomic shock to the global economy), our forecasts would probably prove too optimistic.
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