Anvar Saidenov: Kazakhstan faces up to the down side of rapid growth
Anvar Saidenov oversees one of the fastest-growing economies in the world. But could inflationary pressures hit Kazakhstan’s credit rating?
"Real estate and consumer loans are doubling or tripling each year – the exposure to our banks is big. We should be cautious because in essence this is a bubble" Anvar Galimullaevich Saidenov
Anvar Galimullaevich Saidenov is in an enviable position for a central banker. As governor of Kazakhstan’s National Bank since January 2004, he oversees an economy that grew at 10% in the first quarter of 2007, and 10.6% for the full year 2006. So long as energy and mineral prices remain high, Kazakhstan’s economy should continue to roar ahead. But the 47-year-old official, who studied in London and Moscow and was promoted to replace the highly regarded Grigori Marchenko, faces challenges. Inflation is slowly declining but remains dangerously high. The economy remains worryingly dependent on high oil prices – a succession of officials have failed to diversify the economy into manufacturing, financial services and logistics.