Mechanical engineering of Kazakhstan is a driving force of industrialization
Experts say that neither the nationwide state of emergency nor the quarantine measures prevented the development of the mechanical engineering sector in Kazakhstan. Unlike other sectors of the national economy that were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, mechanical engineering observed an increase in production. From January to March 2020, the output in the industry reached 378.6 billion tenge (US$941.7 million). This is 51.8 percent more than the last year. The industrial production index compared to the same period in 2019 amounted to 130.4 percent.
The enterprises that manufacture agricultural machinery performed well. In the first quarter of 2020, two tractor plants in Kostanai sold five times more units of machinery compared to 2019. In total, manufacturers plan to produce more than 500 tractors. The enterprises switched to an enhanced mode of operation in order to fully cover the demand of the farmers. New tractors go directly to the farmers on the fields.
“A part of the staff was transferred to the two shifts of operation. Shipments to the regions of Kazakhstan are carried out on a daily basis. During the quarantine regime effective in the regions of the country, our company keeps abreast and does its best in order to ensure the farmers receive the equipment in due time. Soon, many parts and components for tractors will be produced in Kazakhstan. For these purposes, the localization center is being prepared for launch in Kostanai. The list of products will include plastic parts, cabs, wire harnesses and more,” said Nikolai Parkhomenko, Commercial Director of a machine building plant.
Director of another plant located in Kostanai Dinara Shukizhanova said that ‘the production of components at the localization center will be conducted in cooperation with the leading manufacturers of the tractor parts and components, and, importantly, with the involvement of the small and medium-sized businesses within the country.”
Tractor plant in Petropavl also has big plans. The plant was launched under the Industrial-Innovative Development of Kazakhstan state program. Currently, the enterprise is modernizing its production. The plant in Petropavl intends to produce equipment for applying liquid fertilizers to the soil.
“We produce a tractor using 52 percent of the domestic production materials. We completely manufacture frames, cabs and hydraulic tanks. All of these tractor parts we make ourselves. We also plan to launch the production of the liquid fertilizers’ diffuser. We have received a preliminary order already. The global agricultural trend is moving towards this. If liquid fertilizers are applied, crop yields will increase by 50 percent,” said Yerlan Zhagparov, Acting Director of the tractor plant.
The enterprise is included in the list of the Industrialization Map of Kazakhstan projects. Though it was launched in 2016, the plant is expected to start operating at full capacity by 2021. It is aimed at providing the Kazakh farmers with the equipment of the domestic assembly, which will be not inferior to the foreign production in terms of the quality but will be more affordable.