1) The insurance industry has been vigorously developed
According to Kazakstan Capital Net, according to the news released by Kazakstan Financial Industry Association, Kazakstan’s insurance industry will maintain a strong growth momentum in 2020, with the total assets of the insurance industry increasing by 23%, despite the great difficulties in economic development. Life insurance was a major growth area for the industry, with Kazakh National Life Insurance Company’s assets up 38 percent. Securities assets in the insurance industry assets accounted for as high as 69 percent. In 2020, the securities assets of Harbin insurance industry will increase by 33%. Combined with currency revaluation, the investment income of insurance industry will increase by 67%.
2) The market for takeout services has grown substantially
The head of Chocofood, the largest food delivery service platform in Harbin, said that despite the general growth of the food delivery market, the revenue growth was limited, with the average customer unit price increasing by only 5 percent. The need to purchase personal protective equipment such as masks, gloves and disinfectant for food delivery workers has led to an increase in business expenses, but the overall impact is modest. Before the outbreak, Chocofood spent a lot of money on marketing, causing it to lose money. With marketing budgets slashed, Chocofood has been profitable for two months in a row in April-May 2020.
According to data released by food delivery platform Glovo, demand for food delivery services has increased significantly since the quarantine was put in place. From the beginning of 2020 to the peak of the epidemic, takeout orders increased 30 percent year on year. Orders have risen by an average of about 20 per cent a month since the quarantine was lifted. Compared to 2019, Glovo’s operating expenses, the number of deliverymen and the number of corporate employees increased significantly, but the company remained profitable.
Yandex, an e-commerce giant, has tripled its orders for takeout services in Almaty and Noor Sultan since 2020. Yandex officials say customer orders have changed as quarantine measures have been tightened. Orders surged in the early days of the outbreak. Orders surged again in late September after the platform launched a free meal delivery service.
3) Poverty rate increased to 12 to 14 percent
The World Bank said in a report released Monday that the COVID-19 epidemic is increasing poverty in Kazakhstan, with the poverty rate likely to rise to 12 to 14 percent, Interfax reported.
According to the report, the economic downturn caused by the epidemic has hit a number of industries in Kazakhstan. “The industries most affected by the outbreak are retail and wholesale, hotels, and transportation, which together account for about 30 percent of the urban employment population in Kazakhstan. According to the World Bank’s assessment, the poverty rate in Kazakhstan is likely to increase from 6 per cent before the outbreak to 12-14 per cent in 2020.”
According to the World Bank, 2020 will be the most complex economic year for Kazakhstan in nearly two decades, with “COVID-19 hitting the economy harder than the economic crises of 2008 and 2015”. The World Bank also forecasts growth of 2.5 per cent in 2021. The government forecast earlier this week that the economy would grow by no less than 3% this year.