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Kazakhstan president pushes for growth of creative economy in State of the Nation Address

04 October 2023

Kazakhstan president pushes for growth of creative economy in State of the Nation Address

In his State of the Nation Address on September 1, 2023, Kazakhstan’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev pushed for the growth of the country’s creative economy, which includes the media, cinema, music, design, education and IT industries.

In Kazakhstan, the creative industry is concentrated in merely three cities: Almaty, Astana and Shymkent.

Saule Akhmetova, Partner and Branch Director, GRATA International, Almaty

“The president emphasized the importance of developing this industry to increase jobs and popularize the Kazakh people,” said Saule Akhmetova, partner and branch director at GRATA International in Almaty.

According to Tokayev, several Kazakh individuals have reaped international recognition for their creative skills, yet the creative sector accounts for less than 1 percent of Kazakhstan’s GDP. Its contribution to employment is even smaller.

Among others, Tokayev instructed the Kazakhstan government to increase the export of IT services to one billion dollars by 2026. IT, including software and computer games, generate the most profits in Kazakhstan’s creative industry. “For this reason, it is worth scaling up the experience of Astana Hub, the largest international technopark of IT startups in Central Asia,” said Akhmetova.

Timur Berekmoinov, Counsel and Department Head of IP, GRATA International, Almaty

Tokayev also said special attention should be given to AI. “With full use of the capabilities of AI, it is possible to make a qualitative leap towards the knowledge economy. In this regard, it is necessary to establish cooperation with leading international companies. In addition, it is essential to focus on training qualified specialists, conducting research in this area at Kazakh universities and building a holistic innovation ecosystem in all regional centres,” noted Timur Berekmoinov, counsel and department head of IP at GRATA International in Almaty.

“The president also called for creating the most attractive conditions, including preferences to attract investment in constructing large data centres and promote Kazakh interests in data storage and processing,” added Akhmetova.

In terms of IP protection, Berekmoinov said that efforts are now underway to improve IP legislation.

“Public associations of patent attorneys of the Republic of Kazakhstan sent over 200 proposals to amend regulatory legal acts in IP. The proposals address problematic issues in practice related to parallel imports, compensation for violation of exclusive rights to trademarks, the use of trademarks in domain names and the regulation of generics in Kazakhstan,” he said.

- Espie Angelica A. de Leon

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