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 Cookiesbefore 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.

Capital markets: Technicalities hamper Kazakhstan

The prospect of progress in Azerbaijan’s equity markets throws into sharp relief the recent lack of it in those of its Caspian neighbour Kazakhstan.

Long the local leader in debt capital markets development, in 2011 Kazakhstan looked set to become a regional equity powerhouse following the announcement by the country’s autocratic president, Nursultan Nazarbayev, of plans for extensive privatization.

Initial proposals for the People’s IPOs, as the programme became known, envisaged the sale of minority stakes in a dozen state-owned companies to local retail investors at a rate of two or three a year. Yet three years on, the only offering to make it to market has been a 10% stake in KazTransOil, which was sold by Kazakh sovereign wealth fund Samruk-Kazynafor KT27 billion ($179.5 million) in December 2012.

A second IPO, of national power grid operator Kegoc, was scheduled for May 2013, but never materialized. Plans for an offering of national carrier Air Astana similarly seem to have stalled.

The reasons for the delay are unclear. Reports suggest Kegoc’s listing ran into legal difficulties, but local market participants say the continuing merger of Kazakhstan’s 11 second-pillar pension funds into one might be equally to blame.

The drastic reduction in the country’s institutional investor base has already put a severe dampener on liquidity in the domestic bond market, according to Jean-Christophe Lermusiaux, head of research at leading local investment bank Visor Capital, and might also be acting as a deterrent to equity listings.

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