The material on this site is for financial institutions, professional investors and their professional advisers. It is for information only. Please read our Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy and Cookies before using this site. Please see our Subscription Terms and Conditions.

All material subject to strictly enforced copyright laws. © 2022 Euromoney, a part of the Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC.

Central Asia: Second BTA default shakes Kazakh banking sector

Support sought from Samruk-Kazyna; Upheaval after Kulibayev sacking

Kazakhstan’s third-biggest lender, BTA, formally defaulted on its debt for the second time last month, derailing what was the biggest-ever emerging market corporate debt restructuring. A grace period ended on January 18 after the bank missed a $160 million interest payment on its $2 billion Eurobond due 2018. The default comes just 18 months after creditors signed up to an initial restructuring, with a 70% haircut on $16.6 billion in debt after its first default, in 2009.

BTA has so far failed to win up-front shareholder approval for another restructuring: holders of the bank’s global depositary receipts voted against such a resolution in Almaty on January 26. But BTA, whose chief executive, Marat Zairov, resigned last month, says it is still pursuing a restructuring.

As Euromoney went to press the bank was setting up a formal steering committee, advised by Lazard and law firm White & Case.

The new default is a harsh blow for creditors. In a press release on January 12 an ad hoc creditors’ group said that the National Bank of Kazakhstan and the $90 billion sovereign wealth fund Samruk-Kazyna were both responsible for what the group called an inexcusable situation.

You have reached premium content. Please log in to continue reading.

Read beyond the headlines with Euromoney

For over 50 years, our readers have looked to Euromoney to stay informed about the issues that matter in the international banking and financial markets. Find out more about our different levels of access below.


Unlimited access to and

Expert comment, long reads and in-depth analysis interviews with senior finance professionals

Access the results of our market-leading annual surveys across core financial services

Access the results of our annual awards, including the world-renowned Awards for Excellence

Your print copy of Euromoney magazine delivered monthly

£73.75 per month

Billed Annually


Unlimited access to and, including our top stories, long reads, expert analysis, and the results of our annual surveys and awards

Sign up to any of our newsletters, curated by our editors


Already a user?

We use cookies to provide a personalized site experience.
By continuing to use & browse the site you agree to our Privacy Policy.
I agree