Joining the World Trade Organization (WTO) will affect the telecommunication services rates in Kazakhstan and later on it will lift restrictions from foreign capital in the country's telecommunication companies, reports Tengrinews citing Kazakhstan's Minister of Economic Integration Zhanar Aitzhanova.
“Liberalization of the telecommunication and financial services markets will advance the quality of these services and reduce the prices for the consumers,” said Aitzhanova at the Majilis (the lower chamber of the Parliament) meeting.
According to Aitzhanova, 2.5 years after Kazakhstan joins the WTO, the 49% ceiling restricting the presence of foreign capital in the country's telecommunication companies will be lifted.
“This will open the access for foreign intercommunication companies to invest into Kazakhstan. However, the 49% ceiling will be retained for KazakhTelecom (Kazakhstan national telecommunication company) ever after the accession into the WTO,” said the Minister.
Furthermore, Ms. Aitzhanova said that after 5 years in the WTO, Kazakhstan would allow foreign banks and organization to open direct branch offices. “However, to ensure stability of its financial market, Kazakhstan has established express requirements for the foreign companies, including minimum asset requirements for parent banks and insurance companies, as well as the floor of private deposits,” said the Minister.
By Renat Tashkinbayev