(Corrects dollar number in third paragraph to billion from
By Raushan Nurshayeva
ASTANA Feb 6 Kazakhstan, keen to deploy
billions of dollars to sustain rapid growth rates, will merge
its private pension fund assets into one state-run fund by July
1, Deputy Prime Minister Kairat Kelimbetov said in a statement.
Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev had last month ordered
the government to create a single pension fund to support the
economy without raiding the $58 billion National Fund,
replenished by windfall oil export revenues.
The combined pension assets accumulated by 10 private, and
one state-run, Kazakh pension funds totaled 3.177 trillion tenge
($20.7 billion) as of Dec. 1, 2012, central bank data show. The
state-run pension fund, GNPF, made up 19.3 percent of that sum.
The single state-run pension fund, to be created under the
umbrella of GNPF, would be owned by the government and managed
by the central bank, Kelimbetov said. The central bank will act
as a custodian, keeping the assets of the new fund.
"Investments of assets of the single pension fund will be
carried out based on the principle of diversification, safety of
investment and moderate yields," Kelimbetov's statement said. It
gave no further detail of future investment strategy.
Central Bank head Grigory Marchenko said on Jan. 25 that the
new fund could eventually invest half its assets abroad.
Marchenko said at the time that the merger of Kazakh private
pension fund assets into a single state-run fun could take just
three months, if there was strong support from all government
bodies and parliament. He said in a worse-case scenario the
process could drag on for up to a year and a half.
(Writing by Dmitry Solovyov; Editing by Hans-Juergen Peters and