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. © 2021 Euromoney, a part of the Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC.
Capital Markets

Controlled explosion as banking booms

The Kazakh banking sector, which has leapt forward at a remarkable rate for the past four years under the strict supervision of the central bank, is about to get a new supervisor. What next for this success story? Chris Pala reports.

KAKAKHSTAN'S BANKING ASSETS may be equivalent to only a third of GDP, but the sector has been growing at a rate of 50% a year for the past four years. "The place is booming," says Ray Webber, CEO of HSBC Kazakhstan, one of the three western banks operating in the country. While foreign investors complain of a difficult business climate, Kazakh paper is routinely oversubscribed and retail assets grow at a dizzying rate.

Tight supervision has been the secret of Kazakhstan's banking success. The central bank, the National Bank of Kazakhstan, played the key role in cleaning up the sector in the mid-1990s.

Today, it is a measure of its confidence that it relinquished control over the supervision of the country's financial sector as of January 1 to the Agency for Financial Supervision, under the leadership of Balat Zhamishev, who was appointed to head the body during his second stint as deputy governor.

"Local banks are well managed and well capitalized," says Douglas Kennedy, manager of the Kazakh subsidiary of ABN Amro. "They don't yet have the entire product range that a western bank would have, but they are using conservative practices to deliver."

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.

SUBSCRIBE ONLINE TODAY

Unlimited access to Euromoney.com and Asiamoney.com

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

FREE 7 DAY TRIAL

Unlimited access to Euromoney.com and Asiamoney.com, 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

LOGIN NOW

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