ASTANA – President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev visited the Zhambyl Region in southern Kazakhstan on Feb. 3, touring the region’s agricultural facilities and highlighting its enormous yet untapped potential, according to the presidential press service.
One of the first sites in his program was the Aulie-Ata Phoenix poultry farm, located in the Myrzatai village of the Baizak district. Farida Junussova, head of the poultry farm, told the President about the farm’s activities.
The poultry farm employs around 250 villagers, who raise one million baby chickens using Dutch technology. Annual production reaches 8,000 tons of broiler meat, which is supplied to the domestic market and exported to Russia and Kyrgyzstan.
This year, the farm plans to build six production facilities worth 1.4 billion tenge (US$3 million) to increase the production capacity by 12,000 tons.
The next stop on Tokayev’s itinerary was a Kostobe-2019 agricultural production cooperative in the village of Talas in the Baizak district, one of the participants of the Auyl Amanaty (heritage of the village in Kazakh) program’s pilot project aimed at supporting agricultural producers and increasing the population’s income.
The cooperative received a preferential loan and purchased agricultural machinery through leasing. The cooperative, which brings together 175 members, now has 12 agricultural machinery units and 401 hectares of land.
In the Kostobe district alone, 256 residents received 886 million tenge (US$1.9 million) in loans for business development within five directions of the pilot project. The program will be expanded to other regions with at least 11,606 microloans worth 52.4 billion tenge (US$114.4 millon) in 2023, including 3,600 microloans worth 11.5 billion tenge (US$25.1 million) in the Zhambyl Region.
Speaking to local agricultural producers, Tokayev promised them greater support.
“We pay great attention to the development of agriculture. The first document I signed after my election as President was a decree on rural development. We will allocate 1 trillion tenge (US$2.2 billion) over the next three years for developing [agricultural] cooperatives. This is a lot of money, and it must be used effectively. The state will always support rural hard workers,” said Tokayev.
Visits to social facilities were also part of Tokayev’s program. The President visited the House of Students at Sherkhan Murtaza Innovative International Institute in Taraz. He emphasized that education is a particular focus of the state.
“You are the youth, the future of Kazakhstan. The time is coming for the new generation. It is imperative to receive a good education. As Abai said, the ‘perfect person’ must first and foremost possess a clear and sharp mind, perspicacity, and a thirst for knowledge. In everything, he must strive to achieve results. But it is in the world of knowledge that one must never rest on his laurels. One must always be on the lookout. Our country’s progress and prosperity depend on you,” Tokayev told the students.
He also visited a new school in the Koktal village of the Baizak district, meeting schoolchildren in their classrooms. Opened in 2022, 1,207 children now study in the school.
At least 13 schools designed with 9,500 seats are expected to be built in the region by 2025 as part of the Comfortable School national project. Eight of them will be commissioned in 2024.
During his visit, Tokayev visited a new hospital in the village of Sarykemer in the Baizak district to check the quality of medical services provided to rural residents, one of the key tenets of Tokayev’s election program.
The hospital provides daily preventive, emergency, urgent and scheduled medical care, and employs more than 260 doctors, nurses and medical assistants.
As part of a broader effort to enhance medical care in rural areas nationwide, 309 primary healthcare facilities and a major reconstruction of 12 central district hospitals are planned for 2023, which will affect more than 2.4 million rural residents.