Though the sector has been shaken up in the past two years with the collapse of the tenge, a combination of resilience, government activism, and belt-tightening has helped Kazakhstan's players weather the storm.

Victoria Gorobtsova

CEO, Kagazy Recycling

In 2013 Kagazy founded the Association of Packagers of Kazakhstan, the first of its kind in the country. Its goal is to bring together businesses that use various types of packaging in their operations such as big bottlers, which need plastic and metal packaging. At that time, we determined that we all needed to speak up about our problems and go to the government to make ourselves heard. Later, we joined the Association of Recyclers of Kazakhstan. We try to promote the needs of recyclers because the oil business has plenty of support. The sector generates the tax budget but we wanted to make ourselves heard, which has finally happened. There are now many supportive tax regimes for producers; the government helps with land for recyclers and provides tax exemptions and we work to promote our policy with other businesses. We do not just collect waste and recycle it; we try to instill this philosophy within our clients.

Amangeldy Yelgonov

Director, Wirtgen Kazakhstan

Business is growing, and if we compare turnovers there is not much of a difference; however, in terms of market share there has been a large increase since 2014. We have gradually grown—we have between 50 and 100% of the market depending on the type of machines. We are the market leader, not only in Kazakhstan but worldwide. We represent a specific sector; we do not produce machines for companies like Caterpillar or Komatsu. These companies are much bigger than us. However, in our sector—asphalt and concrete—we are first. The clients purchasing machines from us are local—and make up the majority—as well as international. We serve Chinese, Italian, and Iranian companies operating in Kazakhstan, selling them new machines as well as spare parts. We provide a service. The first international companies came to Kazakhstan 20 years ago. Until five or seven years ago, they would buy machinery from their own companies. Now, however, they come to us, and Todini, for example, is one of our international clients.

Yerkebulan Ilyasov

Chairman, Alageum Electric

The last two years have been a period of crisis; due to rapid devaluation there were a large amount of imports for electric equipment that caused a decrease in sales. In 2016 we expected a 10% fall; yet due to great support from the government, we actually grew. The money was invested into the stations. The government formulated new programs for investing. One of them is a national level project for innovative industrial development in six sectors: agricultural mechanics, mining, and electromechanical construction, to name but a few, where Alageum Electric is the national champion. The government developed a special finance investment program that comes from Baiterek Holding and includes export development. As Alageum already has 30-40% of exports it was timely to receive this further boost. To support exports, the Development Bank gave Alageum KZT1.5 million to purchase raw materials. Russian suppliers used to increase prices annually and now that we buy 100% of our materials we have saved money for the government as well.

Efe Parker

Managing Director, Aksa Kazakhstan

We first established our foreign office in Kyrgyzstan in 1997 but later saw great potential in Kazakhstan. Our management subsequently decided to open an additional office in Almaty in 1998 and we have been doing business in Kazakhstan for almost 19 years, bringing our goods and doing marketing, sales, and providing after-sales service. In the oil and gas industry there are refineries around the country where it is hard to provide electricity as they are remote. This is one of our main targets, as every building needs power generators. Elsewhere, our focus is on hospitals, hotels, and factories. The government provides great opportunities for companies that want to open a production area in different areas of the country; yet sometimes these places have electricity problems. Kazakhstan has great potential, which is the reason there are many investments here. One of our main targets is construction. Kazakhstan is getting bigger and we also try to grow in line with its market.

Batyrzhan Tergeussizov

Managing Director, Linde Gas Kazakhstan

Our approach at Linde Group has always been to support our customers with onsite operations and plants. We signed a contract with our global partner ArcelorMittal for an air separation unit (ASU) construction to supply the customer's steel production with industrial gases. As a supply schema we used a worldwide popular on-site supply mode that allows customers to release internal resources for their main production needs. This on-site supply mode has already proven its effectiveness through many worldwide projects. Thanks to ArcelorMittal's large volume of gas consumption, we have one of the biggest ASU in Kazakhstan among CIS and Central Asian countries. For example, the ASU capacity is comparable to a couple of Linde plants in Russia. Our goal is to provide the market with the required amount of industrial gases constructing more on-site facilities. We offer our customers turnkey plants: we invest, build, and operate the plant and a customer gets the necessary gas products.