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Kazakhstan: Free Economic Zone Intended To Improve Economy

Almaty, 29 August 1996 (RFE/RL) -- Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev has issued a decree granting Free-Economic-Zone Status to the Lissakovsk Region of Kostanay Oblast of North Kazakhstan.

Reports quote yesterday's decree as saying officials of the region are given special responsibility to improve the region's economy over the next 15 years.

The region borders the Russian Federation, and has a large ethnic-Russian population.

Moscow recently cut electric power supplies to part of northern Kazakhstan because of non-payment of energy debts. Kazakhstan responded by barring supplies of coal. Factories in the region are reported at a standstill.

Kazakhstan to hold children's festival

The "BOBEK" Foundation of Kazakhstan, led by President Nursultan Nazarbayev's wife, Sara Nazarbayeva, has announced it plans to hold the first Children's Festival in Almaty November 1 to 3. Talented children from Kazakhstan provinces, Central Asian States and other CIS members are expected to take part in the event.

Ministries to begin moving to new national capital before end of year

Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev has held a cabinet meeting on preparations for moving some ministries and other state organizations to Aqmola City.

Aqmola has been chosen to replace Almaty as Kazakhstan's capital. According to a plan adopted yesterday, some ministries are to being moving to Aqmola in northern Kazakhstan before the end of the year.