Billions In Bailouts Still Can’t Heal Kazakhstan’s ‘Sick’ Banks

After a decade of efforts and $18 billion in state bailouts, Kazakhstan’s banking sector is still in a mess. Just ask the country’s president, Bloomberg News reported. “The financial system is sick,” President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev told a government meeting last month as he railed against declines in business lending and an increase in loans to consumers with little chance of repaying the money. “The role of the banking sector in the development of the economy is declining every year.” His gloomy assessment came as the Kazakh central bank prepares to issue asset-quality assessments of individual lenders on Feb. 28 after it gave the country’s overall banking sector a clean bill of health in December. Read more