* Economy minister says global markets unpredictable
* National grid KEGOC float postponed until 2013
* KazTransOil may float in October 2012
By Raushan Nurshayeva
ASTANA, March 13 Kazakhstan has postponed
plans to float shares in several state-run enterprises,
including an oil transport company and its national grid, due to
volatile global market conditions, economy minister Bakytzhan
Sagintayev said on Tuesday.
The oil-producing Central Asian country had planned to
launch the first phase of its "People's IPO" in the second or
third quarter of this year, part of a programme aimed at giving
ordinary Kazakhs the chance to own shares in major companies.
Sagintayev told a government meeting the proposed listing of
national grid company KEGOC would be postponed until next year.
State oil transportation company KazTransOil could still be
floated by the end of this year, the minister added.
"KazTransOil and KEGOC are ready to offer their shares to
the public," Sagintayev said.
"At the same time, due to unpredictable developments in the
world economy, we suggest it would be expedient to carry out the
KazTransOil IPO this year ... and to postpone the KEGOC IPO
Kuandyk Bishimbayev, deputy head of sovereign wealth fund
Samruk-Kazyna, told the same meeting that the KazTransOil
listing was planned for October 2012.
The government plans to invigorate the small local stock
market and to raise around $500 million from the first round of
IPOs, which will see company stakes of 5-15 percent sold to
retail investors and local pension funds.
The IPO programme envisages that the jewels in Kazakhstan's
crown - state oil and gas firm KazMunaiGas and uranium miner
Kazatomprom - will go public after 2015, potentially raising
billions of dollars via sales to local and foreign investors.
Kazakhstan is the second-largest oil producer in the former
Soviet Union after Russia. It is also the world's largest
uranium producer and a major exporter of grain and industrial
Kairat Kelimbetov, then economy minister and now a deputy
prime minister, told Reuters last October that the share floats
might be postponed if global markets remained volatile.
(Writing by Robin Paxton; Editing by Mark Potter)