Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 01/03/2014 -- Private consumption is set to remain the primary driver of Kazakh economic growth, and this will have positive implications for spending on food and drink. Future drivers of growth will be portfolio expansion by major manufacturers and importers, including strong marketing and promotional campaigns targeting younger and more aspirational consumers. The country remains an attractive destination for foreign investment owing to its vast natural resource wealth, significant potential to export to high-growth markets in East and South Asia, and steadily improving business environment.
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Headline Industry Data (local currency):
- 2014 per capita food consumption: +9.8%; compound annual growth rate (CAGR) 2013 to 2017: +10.1%
- 2014 alcoholic drinks value sales: +10.8%; CAGR forecast 2013 to 2017: +11.0%
- 2014 soft drinks value sales: +14.1%; CAGR forecast 2013 to 2017: +14.3%
In summer 2013, South Korea-based Lotte Confectionery reached an agreement to acquire leading Kazakh confectioner Rakhat JSC. The arrangement will see Lotte initially purchase a 76% share of the company for US$156.6mn before buying up the remaining shares. The deal will enable Lotte to expand its presence in the Central Asian market, with Rakhat offering annual sales in the region of just over US $200mn as of 2012.
Exports Below Potential: We maintain our forecast for Kazakh wheat production to rebound by 52.4% year-on-year to reach 15.0mn tonnes in 2013/14. This is slightly lower than official estimates of 16.3mn tonnes. Indeed, we are concerned about potential deterioration to the quality of the crop. We maintain our view that Kazakhstan will struggle to export wheat this season because of strong competitiveness from neighbouring countries, which still dominate the shipping routes to the Middle East and Asia. Ultimately, we believe the development of the country's export sector will come from a shift from the Middle East, where it competes heavily with its neighbours, to Asia.
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