10 new business support measures, announced by the President on 31 March 2020
On March 31st, 2020 President of Kazakhstan, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev announced further measures to support the people of Kazakhstan during COVID-19 pandemic. The following 10 measures were highlighted:
- Extension of social benefits (42,500 tenge) is also granted to self-employed or unofficially employed citizens. For this purpose, it would be sufficient for them to formalize their status, whereupon they would receive a monthly social security payment from the state for the entire period of emergency.
- To involve local SMEs in the production and delivery of groceries and convenience kits for certain categories of citizens (disabled, unemployed, etc.).
- It is necessary to involve domestic IT companies to develop a platform that will provide an effective mechanism for monitoring the targeted spending of social support funds.
- 70 billion tenge will be allocated from the budget for the spring sowing campaign (SSC) and distributed to farmers by means of Agrarian Credit Corporation JSC. The rate for final borrowers will not exceed 5% (this measure was announced earlier and is currently being clarified).
- For the purpose of SSC, an additional 100 billion will be allocated under the Economy of Simple Things programme. The final rate under this program has been unified across all industries and amounts to 6%.
- Reducing the price of diesel fuel for agricultural producers to 165tenge per liter or 15% of the market price. About 390 thousand tons of diesel fuel at a reduced price will be allocated for this purpose.
- The Government and local mayors should immediately launch specific projects within the framework of the Employment Roadmap to provide employment for the able-bodied population, especially young people, around the Capital city, Almaty and Shymkent.
- Resettlement funds at the rate of 2 minimum wages or 85,000 tenge will be provided for such citizens as soon as they arrive at their place of work. Not in replacement, but in addition to the regular salary.
- For SMEs in the most affected economy segments, charging and payment of taxes and other payments from the wage fund is abolished for 6 months (from April 1 till October 1 this year).
- These segments include catering, selected trade sectors, transport services, consulting services, IT, hotel business, tourism, etc.
- The State Committee on the State of Emergency will approve the final list and adjust it as necessary.
- The Government, together with ECE, has been working on reducing import duties on a number of food products for which the country is not self-sufficient. It is necessary to ensure that domestic business requests are taken into account and to accelerate this work. It is also crucial to use the potential of local small and medium businesses.
- The Mayors and the Government (through the "State Food Corporation") should establish a mechanism of guaranteed purchase of products from domestic agricultural and processing companies for at least 6 months in advance, i.e. introduce the so-called "forward purchase" or " crop purchase".Define a clear mechanism for integrating enterprises along the entire process chain from field to counter and provide them with soft loans. Business needs to take on counter commitments to ensure output, preserve prices, maintain employment, etc.