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A central banking success story

Grigori Marchenko, governor of the National Bank of Kazakhstan, talks to Euromoney’s Guy Norton about how the Kazakh banking sector became a model for its neighbours and his plans for the future.

Grigori Marchenko: banking success
was not a magic formula.

The Kazakh banking sector is widely regarded as  the best in the Commonwealth of Independent States. How has this reputation been established?

There was no magic formula, it was simply a case of following international best practice as laid down by the Basle Committee of the Bank for International Settlements. That was the best thing to do for a small, open economy like Kazakhstan's - we're not a China or a Brazil which can produce its own economic model. We're a huge country size-wise, but with a small population. As a transit economy it's important to be open to stick to international standards.

Since independence the governors of the National Bank of Kazakhstan may have changed but the policy of the bank has remained consistent - namely ensuring that the necessary legislation has been put in place to ensure a strong, robust financial services sector.

We haven't reinvented the wheel, just insisted on the highest possible international standards. We've been able to implement these thanks to the strong backing of the president.

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