The loan for energy deal with Kazakhstan we said late last week that we expected shortly has been announced by the Kazakh state news agency Kazinform. Eximbank has lent the state-owned Development Bank of Kazakhstan $5 billion while CNPC (PetroChina’s parent) is lending a further $5 billion to the Kazakh state energy company KazMuniGas. In return, CNPC and KazMuniGas are jointly taking control of Kazakh oil producer MangistauMunaiGas. CNPC already has a controlling interest in PetroKazakhstan.
The latest deal is similar in concept to ones China has struck with Brazil (also $10 billion), Venezuela ($4 billion) and most recently Russia ($25 billion) as it taps its foreign exchange reserves to buy energy assets.
The Kazakhstan deal is one of several agreements struck between the two countries during a visit to Beijing by Kazakhstan’s president Nursultan Nazarbayev. This Bystander’s eye is caught by the one to build a road bridge between China and Europe via the former Soviet Central Asian republic, but there is scant detail.