“Taking into account the current situation in our country and based on the suggestion of the State Commission and experts, I have decided to sign the Decree on the extension of the state of emergency until May 11 this year,” said President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev.
27 April 2020 Statement by Head of State Kasym-Jomart Tokayev
Since March 16, our country has been living in a state of emergency.
This time has proved difficult for many citizens. Some people’s incomes fell, some lost their jobs, some had to change their life plans. I sympathize with everyone as human beings.
I had to make such a difficult but necessary decision to prevent the widespread spread of a dangerous virus in Kazakhstan.
I succeeded to a great extent. The pandemic is not growing exponentially.
Kazakhstan’s actions have received positive feedback from the World Health Organization and international experts.
The country has introduced strict quarantine measures, public transport has been suspended, most organizations and institutions have switched to remote operation, streets and residential facilities are being disinfected, and all infected citizens receive medical care.
Of course, the situation in different parts of the country is not the same.
In some regions, the spike in morbidity seems to have been passed. In others, the dynamics of the virus are still alarming.
We act depending on the specific situation on the ground.
Our main task is to preserve the lives and health of our citizens. We are also taking measures to preserve the population’s income and ensure social and economic stability.
Once again, I want to assure you that in these difficult conditions no one will be left alone with their problems, and the State will not leave anyone in trouble.
During the state of emergency, I have announced two packages of support measures. They are being actively implemented, though not without administrative flaws, which cause fair censures of society.
4 million 250 thousand people received financial assistance.
More than 570,000 people have received food packages. We plan to provide products to more than 1.1 million people in Kazakhstan.
Funds are allocated from the Birgemiz Fund, which was established on the initiative of the First President – Yelbasa. The “Nur Otan” party is actively working.
More than 1.6 million people in April-May will receive the help from the state on payment of municipal services.
Availability and quality of food products is monitored on a permanent basis.
The necessary products are sufficient in the country.
The local authorities monitor the prices of socially important products.
We are trying to financially support our medics, who are on the front line in the fight against the pandemic. The Ministry of Health and Akims are taking measures to support other categories of medical workers.
More than 1.6 million citizens and 11.5 thousand small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have received deferrals on payments of loans and credits worth more than 360 billion tenge.
Small and medium-sized businesses are in a difficult situation today. If we do not help it to survive today, the country’s economic recovery is out of the question.
Tax incentives cover more than 700 thousand companies and individual entrepreneurs, which will save them about 1 trillion KZT.
Funds have been allocated for crediting small and medium businesses at acceptable rates.
In order to avoid reduction of people and their salaries, a Register of systemically important companies is being formed, which will be provided with the relevant support. It should include companies that are really important for our economy.
Despite all the difficulties, agrarians continue to work. Their work deserves sincere respect.
The issues of conducting spring field work have been largely resolved. There should be no obstacles here. This is the task of the Ministry of Agriculture and Akims.
200 billion tenge are directed on financing spring field works and forward purchase, including 70 billion tenge are allocated for development of seed growing, purchase of fertilizers and pesticides.
In general, the amount of funds allocated to support citizens and business amounted to almost 6 trillion tenge.
This, as you understand, is a huge amount. The task of the Government and regulatory bodies is to ensure absolute efficiency of spent funds, transparency of the whole financing process.
One cannot be complacent about the achieved results. The situation is still extremely serious.
The Coronavirus continues to attack the entire world. The number of people falling ill is approaching 3 million, and that number will rise. A second wave of the pandemic is expected.
The peak of morbidity in Kazakhstan has not been finally passed. There is still a threat that the situation will get out of control.
Unfortunately, a large number of doctors and medical personnel have been infected with coronavirus in some regions, primarily in Almaty. Measures are being taken to ensure the safety of medical personnel. The causes must be carefully analysed, the responsibility of officials must be determined, and a recurrence of the situation must be prevented.
Unless further precautions are taken, other pockets of infection may occur. If quarantine measures are removed at once, we will face a new wave of morbidity.
The risk of disease cannot be underestimated. Coronavirus is highly contagious and poses a serious threat to human health. It is recognized by virtually the entire world.
To argue otherwise is to go against common sense or pursue evil intent.
Taking into account the current situation in our country and based on the proposal of the State Commission and experts, I have decided to sign a decree to extend the state of emergency until May 11 this year.
This decision is dictated by the current difficult reality.
In accordance with the law, the emergency regime will be completed on May 11, unless, of course, there is a new mass outbreak of the epidemic. I hope that this will not happen.
Our common task is to prevent a negative scenario in Kazakhstan. For me, there is nothing more important than the life of every compatriot.
At the same time, the State Commission for Ensuring the Emergency Situation is ready to mitigate the quarantine regime, primarily in regions and cities where the situation with the spread of the virus is under control.
The State Commission is tasked with determining the list of organizations that will start their work in all regions of the country, following the example of the capital.
First of all, these are industrial enterprises, construction and road-building companies, transport companies, banks and the Central Election Commission.
But thus it is necessary to provide observance of all sanitary norms, to carry out regular disinfection of workplaces. In everyday life it is necessary to follow the rules of social distance.
Heads of enterprises and local executive bodies are personally responsible for this. The role of akimats at all levels is growing significantly.
The Government will pay assistance to citizens who have lost their income in the amount of 42500 tenge and for the second month.
There is no need to apply again. Payments will be made on the basis of documents submitted earlier.
Needy families will continue to receive food packages.
During the period of isolation, it is difficult for parents with small children, who find it particularly difficult to sit in four walls.
The State Commission together with the akimats should work on opening access to playgrounds and yards.
Naturally, in strict compliance with all sanitary norms and requirements.
Country house residents are very worried, because in the midst of the most important spring time. The State Commission considered this issue, the decision will be made public.
All passenger air transportation is stopped in the country. It was fully justified. But given the relative stabilization of the situation, the Government will open flights between the capital and Almaty from May 1.
This is necessary both for citizens and for the work of many specialists, including those involved in the fight against the virus.
At the same time, it is important to carefully consider all precautions, to develop regulations for the interaction of aviation and sanitary and epidemiological services.
Partial easing of quarantine cannot be considered a return to the normal way of life.
Shopping and entertainment centers, cinemas, restaurants, parks and other places of mass congestion will be closed to the public for the time being. Distance learning in universities, colleges, schools will remain.
I call on the people of Kazakhstan to take these measures with understanding, and we must be patient.
Warm weather and quarantine fatigue should not cause irresponsibility. Violations of the quarantine regime can multiply the number of victims of coronavirus.
The main risk group remains people with chronic diseases, the older generation.
But practice shows that children can also get infected, and their health we have no right to take risks.
There is no vaccine for coronavirus yet. Only strict observance of quarantine measures saves thousands of people from a dangerous virus. I’m asking you not to leave your homes unnecessarily.
This is especially important during the holy month of Ramadan. This year, on the recommendation of the Spiritual Board of Muslims of Kazakhstan, we will have to abandon some traditions, including the gathering of guests on auysashar.
The May holidays are also ahead of us, which we will also have to celebrate at home.
But none of the veterans of the Great Patriotic War will be left without attention. Akims will provide material assistance to war veterans and home front.
The Ministry of Health faces the task of increasing the volume of testing to at least 20-25 thousand studies per day, which corresponds to the leading international standards.
The Government is instructed to bring the production of domestic test systems to an industrial level as soon as possible.
We need to take measures to use existing facilities for the production of immunobiological drugs.
When the recipe for the vaccine is available, Kazakhstan should not depend on its supplies from abroad.
In the post-crisis period, we will give priority to the development of medicine. This area will receive large-scale State support.
The Government should submit practical proposals to the draft of the new Code on Public Health and the health-care system to improve the system of public health protection. I hope that Parliament will adopt the Code by the end of the session.
In general, already now we must prepare for the post-crisis period. Yelbasy made a convincing statement about this at the meeting of the Security Council on April 24.
The Government and the National Bank will prepare a comprehensive plan for the restoration of economic growth, including support for the most affected industries, by 11 May.
My country is entering a qualitatively new phase of its development. In fact, we will live in a new reality.
Therefore, there will be a large-scale, profound transformation of the economy and the system of public administration.
Today, I once again turn to citizens who are on the front line of the fight against the pandemic.
Once again, I express my gratitude to our doctors and all medical personnel, law enforcement officers and military personnel, who steadfastly and selflessly ensure the safety of people.
I thank the volunteers. Despite the risks, they are helping citizens in need on a daily basis.
I want to express my gratitude to the journalists and media workers who continue to provide citizens with prompt and reliable information.
Words of support are also worthy of the employees of the state apparatus, who in the most difficult conditions ensure the vital activity of the state and the implementation of the package of anti-crisis measures.
Kazakhstan is absolutely open before the international community; we publish all data, however sad they may be.
In this regard, I ask some citizens to refrain from conspiracy gossip.
Yes, there are omissions in the work of State bodies, including those of a systemic nature. We see them, learn lessons and take the necessary measures in the postquarantine period. But most government employees work honestly and even selflessly.
The crisis has shown that Kazakhstanis are a nation of true patriots. With your interested participation, we will be able to achieve all our goals. There is no doubt about it.
Together we will cope with all the difficulties and problems!