Kazakhstan optimistic on economy
ASTANA. May 19. KAZINFORM. Kazakhstan's economy will continue to grow even as the global economic crisis hits its banks, the governor of the nation's central bank has said; Kazinform refers to BBC News. The collapse in oil and gas, along with a declining appetite for investment in developing economies has hurt the central Asian republic. But Grigoriy Marchenko told the BBC that while economic growth would "be limited", it would not be negative. And the bank's governor forecast growth of between 2% and 3% in 2010. Over-borrowing Since 2000, the economy of Kazakhstan has grown by nearly 10% every year on rising oil, cotton and wheat prices, but has hit difficulties. The oil boom also encouraged Kazakh banks to borrow heavily from international sources. They had $45bn (£29.5bn) of foreign debt when the US subprime crisis erupted - a situation made even less tenable by the 18% devaluation of the country's currency, the tenge, in February. Mr Marchenko said measures would be taken to minimise future problems of over-borrowing - including moving to a model which would only allow companies and individuals whose cashflow was in dollars to borrow in the US currency; Kazinform cites BBC News. See www.bbc.co.uk for full version.