Representatives of more than 70 companies participated in the AIFC event for investors in London

On February 2, the Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC), with the support of the Embassy of Kazakhstan in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, hosted the event “AIFC Connect: London 2024”. The gathering brought together approximately 120 representatives from more than 70 organisations – investment banks, international financial companies, law firms, advisory companies, to exchange views on investment opportunities in Kazakhstan and Central Asia.

Renat Bekturov, AIFC Governor, presented investment opportunities in Kazakhstan to representatives of British companies, stating: “Strategic location between Europe, Asia and Middle East grants Kazakhstan a direct access to the major markets of the Eurasian Economic Union, as well as China and the Caspian countries. The global geopolitical environment is forcing countries to find new outlets to international markets and diversify their traditional trade routes. In this context, the Middle Corridor – which connects Europe and Asia – has become an important route in diversifying and strengthening the connectivity on the Eurasian continent. AIFC is an excellent platform for structuring such large infrastructure projects”.

Among the countries of Central Asia, Kazakhstan is a leader in attracting foreign investment. By the end of 2022, the gross inflow of foreign direct investment in the country reached $28 billion, setting a record for the past decade. In 9 months of 2023 alone, the economy attracted $19,7 billion of FDI. Notably, investors showed strong interest in sectors such as mining, manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade, as well as financial and insurance activities. AIFC plays a crucial role in enhancing the country’s investment attractiveness by providing foreign investors with a familiar jurisdiction, grounded in an independent judicial system based on the common law of England and Wales, reliable legal framework, developed financial infrastructure, innovations, and expertise, including in the field of green finance.

The UK consistently ranks among the top 10 investors in Kazakhstan. From 2005 to Q3 2023, the gross inflow of investments from the UK totaled $17 billion. Currently, 62 companies from UK, including White Hill Capital Ltd., BV Technology Limited, VPE Capital Fund Management Limited and others are registered in the jurisdiction of AIFC. These British companies offer services in various sectors, including finance, consulting, mining and IT.

The AIFC Governor emphasised that over the years, the Astana International Financial Centre has successfully attracted more than $10.9 billion to the Kazakh economy, with approximately 40% of these funds raised on the Astana International Exchange (AIX). Leading global custodian banks, including J.P. Morgan, Bank of New York, State Street, Citi, BNP Paribas and Northern Trust have become depositary clients of AIX, holding securities listed on the exchange. AIFC has achieved the creation of an integrated capital market where both foreign and Kazakh investors actively participate. For instance, in November 2023 foreign investors accounted for 61% of trades on AIX.

The event included three panel sessions in which representatives from major foreign and domestic companies discussed the prospects for the development of Kazakhstan’s capital market and changes in financial services within the rapidly developing region of Central Asia. Among the distinguished speakers were Kiyan Zandieh (CEO, CIO, Sturgeon Capital), Angela Knight (Independent Director, AFSA), Hugh Morris (Senior Research Partner, Z/Yen), Nick Kaufmann (Head of Equity Capital Markets and Syndicate, WOOD&Company), Evgeny Monakhov (Head Of Investor Relations, Polymetal International plc), Marat Dikanbayev (Director of Finance Department, KazMunayGas), Ivan Starcevic (Head of Equity Capital Markets, Citi), Janet Heckman (Independent Director, AIX), Seitzhan Zhanybekov (Managing director, Kazatomprom), Viktor Szabo (Investment Director, Abrdn), Botagoz Abisheva (Deputy CEO, Development Bank of Kazakhstan), Saule Zhakayeva (Country Officer, Citi Kazakhstan), Dan Anghelache (Distressed Debt Coordinator for Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, Debtwire), and other esteemed participants.

During the first session “Financial Services in Kazakhstan and Central Asia: Can AIFC become a game-changer?” participants engaged in discussions about the pivotal role and challenges faced by the financial centre in advancing the financial sector in the region. The second session focused on exploring the prospects for the development of the equity capital market in Kazakhstan. And the third session provided a platform for participants to share their insights on the development of the debt capital market in the country.

Despite challenging market conditions marked by high-interest rates, the AIX achieved remarkable milestones in 2023, setting records in terms of the number of listings, trading volumes and the amount of capital raised by businesses.

Since the launch of the AIFC exchange, the total amount of debt capital raised stands at $4,2 billion, while equity capital reached $365 million. Notably, the most traded securities in 2023 were shares of Polymetal International, constituting 31,1% of the total trading volume. KazMunaiGas held the second position

with 30,7%, followed by Kazatomprom in third place with 18,2%.

Being at the forefront of the financial market, AIFC remains committed to facilitating the attraction of investments into the economy of Kazakhstan, developing the country’s financial industry, including the stock market, and fostering integration with international capital markets.



The Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC) is an independent jurisdiction with a favourable legal and regulatory environment and a developed infrastructure for starting and doing business, attracting investment, creating jobs and developing Kazakhstan’s economy. The number of registered companies – more than 2400 from 78 countries.

In 2023, AIFC maintained its leadership in the Central Asia and Eastern Europe region, as per the Global Financial Centres Index ranking. This reaffirmed the presence of a conducive legal and regulatory environment, along with developed infrastructure, fostering an excellent climate for initiating and conducting businesses, attracting investments and nurturing human capital development. Additionally, the AIFC Green Finance Centre’s efforts resulted in Astana securing the top position in the Global Green Finance Index (GGFI) within the Eastern Europe and Central Asia region.

In 2023 Kazakhstan successfully completed the FATF/EAG mutual evaluation procedure, with the AIFC jurisdiction being deemed compliant with international standards on combating money laundering and terrorist financing (AML/CFT). Furthermore, the tax regime of AIFC received recognition for compliance with the global tax transparency standards set by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Both the AIFC Court and the International Arbitration Centre (IAC) earned recognition as reputable and effective forums for dispute resolution. The Lord Burnett of Maldon holds the position of Chief Justice of the AIFC Court, while Thomas Krümmel chairs the IAC.

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Press Secretary, Ainur Issabayeva, +7 701 777 65 65 58, [email protected]

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