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Important indicator of work of executive bodies is prevention of growth in prices for socially significant goods — Bakhyt Sultanov

Monday, 12 April 2021, 12:46:35

At the government session chaired by Prime Minister Askar Mamin, the results of the country's socio-economic development and implementation of the republican budget for January-March 2021 were considered. First Deputy Prime Minister Alikhan Smailov and Minister of Trade and Integration Bakhyt Sultanov made reports on the growth rate of state budget revenues and issues of containing prices for socially significant goods.

According to the minister, since the beginning of this year, prices for socially significant food products have increased by 3.2%.

"At the same time, over the same period last year, prices increased by 4.8%, of which 4.1 percentage points were in March due to the quarantine rush," Sultanov said.

Prices have been stabilized for today. Over the past three weeks, the growth was only 0.2%.

The minister recalled that in order to prevent further price increases at the meeting of the Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan dated March 11, 2021, the Roadmap for price stabilization was approved, which consists of 45 measures.

As part of the implementation of the Roadmap, urgent operational measures were taken in March. Among them:

  • anti-monopoly response measures;
  • introduction of price caps;
  • conclusion of memorandums on the stabilization of prices for socially important goods;
  • holding agricultural fairs;
  • establishment of social shelves in retail outlets;
  • daily monitoring and active media coverage of this work.

“Revolving scheme’’ has been increased by 30% since the beginning of the year and amounted to 24 billion tenge. Additionally, it is planned to allocate 8 billion tenge. At the same time, according to the minister, in some regions there is still a high rise in prices. As of April 6, prices increased the most in the Zhambyl region by 4.2% and in the Atyrau region by 3.8%. The smallest growth of 2.9% was recorded in the East Kazakhstan and Akmola regions.

“On behalf of the Head of State, an important indicator of the executive bodies is the prevention of price increases. The high rise in prices reflects the inadequacy of the measures taken,” said Sultanov.

In this regard, the minister proposed to fix a number of tasks and instructions in the minutes of today's meeting. Among them:

- application of disciplinary measures to supervising deputy akims who allowed the maximum price increase;

- Instructions to the Agency for the Protection and Regulation of Competition to keep under constant control the issue of preventing price collusion of dominant business entities;

- the need to strengthen central and local executive bodies, taking into account quarantine control measures and taking appropriate actions to prevent price increases for socially significant goods, especially import-dependent and export-oriented products.

“Considering that the most effective mechanism for keeping prices down is a ‘revolving scheme,’ it is necessary to bring its financing to 50 billion tenge,” Sultanov noted.

As Smailov noted, the results of the first quarter of this year reflect the trend of economic activity in the country. The production of goods increased by 1.8%, showing a positive result. Annual inflation has slowed to 7%.

“However, the central and local executive bodies must pick up the pace. Interested state bodies, together with akims, need to effectively implement measures to attract high-quality investments, support small and medium-sized businesses,” Smailov noted.

The First Deputy Prime Minister drew special attention to the importance of the issue of preventing the rise in prices for socially significant food products.

The highest growth rate of socially significant food products in the first quarter was in Atyrau and Zhambyl regions. In this regard, Smailov expressed an opinion on the need for the akims of these regions to severely reprimand the Deputy Akim of the Atyrau region Kairat Nurlybayev and the Akim of the Zhambyl region Berik Nygmashev, who are responsible for this work.

On the issue of the state budget revenues, Smailov noted that according to the results of the 1st quarter, growth rates are observed and the indicators are mainly influenced by the growth of local budget revenues (114.2%).

The reporting data, as noted by Smailov, show that the cash balances of local budgets are increasing from month to month.

Local executive bodies need to close problematic issues, first of all, at the expense of the local budget.

“Improvement of the situation in the development of budgetary funds should not relax either the central bodies or local government bodies,” Smailov noted.

In addition, the First Deputy Prime Minister drew attention to the relevance of issues related to public procurement procedures and the implementation of anti-crisis measures to support the economy.

“It is necessary to take timely measures on a comprehensive privatization plan for 2021-2025 and intensify work in this direction,” Smailov summed up.

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