Politics

The Richest Get Richer in Kazakhstan – The Diplomat


The Nazarbayev household was prominently featured on this 12 months’s Forbes listing of Kazakhstan’s richest folks, however the nation’s First President himself didn’t seem within the rating, displaying the bounds of the system’s transparency.

Nursultan Nazarbayev, who left the presidency in 2019 after three many years in energy, has at the least 4 foundations underneath his identify and these management one of many nation’s largest banks in addition to the crown jewel schooling establishment Nazarbayev University, and interact in a number of different profitable actions. 

Until not too long ago the one member of the household that was constantly in Forbes’ yearly rating was Nazarbayev’s center daughter, Dinara Kulibayeva, the spouse of Timur Kulibayev. Through companies shared together with her husband, she controls the biggest financial institution and several other industrial and monetary holdings. At $3.9 billion every, they’re the richest pair in Kazakhstan. 

Mining magnate Vladimir Kim claims Forbes’ primary spot for the fifth 12 months in a row, with a fortune of $5 billion. The prime three have develop into considerably richer up to now two years alone, regardless of the sluggish restoration of the financial system because the begin of the pandemic.

The remainder of the listing options bankers, amongst whom are the homeowners of Kaspi, which listed its shares within the London Stock Exchange in 2020, actual property tycoons, and homeowners of extractive firms.

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Two notable businessmen have been absent from the listing due to their latest run-ins with the regulation. In 2021, Kairat Boranbayev was the 14th richest particular person in Kazakhstan, by his holding Almaly, by which he managed actual property, extractive, and pharmaceutical companies, alongside the McDonald’s franchise and the soccer membership Kairat. In March 2022, he was arrested, accused of embezzlement. 

The identical week, Kairat Satybaldy, additionally a member of the Nazarbayev household, was arrested on fees of embezzlement in opposition to Kazakhtelecom, the nation’s largest telecoms supplier, wherein he owned a 24 % share.

Importantly, with a fortune estimated at $584 million, Nazarbayev’s eldest daughter Dariga made her return into the rating claiming the thirteenth place together with her participation in holding firms that management telecoms and media teams. Until February, she served as a member of parliament. Her son, Nurali Aliyev, is listed because the twenty sixth richest particular person within the nation. 

Last 12 months, an investigation by Radio Azattyq unveiled an unofficial enterprise community established by Kairat Sharipbayev, the previous head of pipeline monopolist KazTransGas and allegedly Dariga’s husband. Sharipbayev left his submit in January after violent unrest and an alleged tried coup resulted in 240 killed throughout the nation.

The shake-up of the January occasions led different public officers linked to the Nazarbayev household to retreat. Almost in unison, regulation enforcement launched an investigation into the waste administration enterprise of Aliya, Nazarbayev’s youngest daughter, and her husband left his submit as prime supervisor at pipeline operator KazTransOil.

Nurbol Nazarbayev, the previous president’s nephew, appeared on Forbes’ listing (forty first within the rating) with a fortune of $160 million, by his participation in funding firms tied to actual property and equipment industries. His father, Bolat, is claimed to have managed a number of companies and authorities companies, each formally and informally.

Public servants typically give their stakes in firms and holdings to belief funds whereas they serve in workplace, dropping off the listing. Such is the case of Almaty mayor Yerbolat Dossayev, ex-head of the Central Bank and co-owner of the Lancaster Group, a big funding firm.

Interviewed by information outlet Orda.kz, the Forbes journalist who compiled the rating mentioned that Nazarbayev couldn’t be included within the listing of the nation’s richest as a result of he doesn’t formally personal enterprise property.

“As far as I know, Nursultan Nazarbayev has never been involved in any business […] Should he be stripped of the title of Elbasy [Leader of the Nation], we might consider him, but for now he is a statesman, not a businessman,” Forbes’ Ardak Bukeyeva mentioned.

In January, citing a report by auditing firm KPMG, President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev mentioned that half of Kazakhstan’s wealth is within the arms of “just 162 people.” Inequality and social injustice have been the catalyst of a nationwide protest in January that was formally labeled as an tried coup and violently repressed.

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While it can’t be deemed complete as a result of it fails to account for the belief funds finally owned by public officers, the Forbes listing however offers a transparent thought of who has a agency grip within the nation’s key financial sectors and what are their mutual ties.

Be it by household relations or by long-term enterprise partnerships, Kazakhstan’s richest have develop into richer up to now years. The latest reshuffling of the property managed by the Nazarbayev household might be seen as a drop within the bucket, contemplating how marginal these companies are compared with the household’s largest property, each at house and overseas.



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