Kazakhstan’s total foreign trade decreased by 30.4% year on year to $28.03bn in the first half of 2016. In particular, trade with the EEU member states contracted by 31.2% to $5.82bn.
The country’s foreign trade continues to be significantly impacted by a number of unfavourable circumstances, including low contract prices of oil and other export commodities, falling production and export indicators for oil, reduced demand from the Russian and Chinese markets and so on. Foreign trade is also continuing to suffer from high volatility in exchange rates.
In the given period Kazakh exports did not show any recovery because of the lack of objective fundamental conditions for this. The annual rate of their decline reached 31.7% and exports did not exceed $16.79bn. Out of this amount, energy and fuel resources accounted for 60.1%, ie $10.08bn in monetary terms. In monthly terms, the deepest fall was in January – by 42.6% year on year ($1.75bn). In June the decrease was the smallest – by 30.5% year on year to $3.03bn. The main destinations for Kazakh exports were in the first half of the year were the EU (47.1% of total exports), China (12.4%), Switzerland (10.5%) and Russia (9.8%). The EEU accounted for 10.7% of Kazakh exports.
Under the pressure of a weak tenge, as well as weak investment and domestic consumption, Kazakh imports also recorded a considerable fall – by 28.4% to $11.25bn. The sharpest decreased was in January – by 41.7% year on year to $1.57bn, while in June the decrease was the smallest – by 30.9% to $1.97bn. Kazakhstan’s main suppliers were Russia (34.2% of total), the EU (24.5%), China (14%) and the US (5%). The EEU’s share in domestic imports was 35.7%.