Heads of Ministries Appointed

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On September 2, the Mazhilis Committee on Economic Reform and Regional Development approved five candidates for the posts of ministers and two deputy Prime Ministers of Kazakhstan at once. Qasym-Jomart Toqayev has already signed the appointments.

Toqayev made the main appointments early on Saturday morning - September 2. He signed decrees appointing his assistant and adviser. Asset Irgaliyev, who had previously been chairman of the Agency for Strategic Planning and Reforms, became assistant to the President on economic issues. Meanwhile, Ernar Baspayev has been appointed advisor to the president. He had previously worked as Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration.


On September 2, the Interior Minister, Marat Akhmetzhanov, was also removed from office by a presidential decree. He worked at this post for about two years. Kazakhstanis will recall that he personally negotiated with the man who took hostages in a Kaspi Bank branch in Astana. He was even accused of trying improve his image, but Akhmetzhanov denied these rumors.

His replacement is a man who is no stranger to this structure. The former deputy of Akhmetzhanov, Yerzhan Sadenov, became the Minister of Internal Affairs. He has worked as a deputy since January 2022. And before that, he headed the police departments in the capital and in the Akmola region. Incidentally, Toqayev has already held a meeting with the new head, where he outlined priorities and directions. 

On September 2, the Majilis also approved two candidates for the posts of deputy prime ministers. Serik Zhumangarin and Tamara Duissenova became the deputies of Kazakhstan's acting Prime Minister, Alikhan Smailov. Zhumangarin, like Duissenova, previously held two posts at once. The former has worked as the Minister of Trade and Integration, while the latter - the Minister of Labor and Social Protection. According to experts, both will now be able to direct their forces in the same direction.

Interesting and no less expected appointments took place on the same day in a number of ministries all at once. The Majilis announced the names of the heads of five departments. Three of them were established on the day before Toqayev's decree.

To sum up:

The Ministry of Tourism and Sports' head will be the akim of Akmola region – Ermek Marzhikpayev. Toqayev signed a decree on the appointment, relieving the official from the authority of his previously held position.

It should be noted that Marzhikpayev has worked as the regional akim since March 2019. He has gained attention because of serious, sometimes senseless spending of the state budget, in particular, in an image struggle.

The Ministry of Culture and Information will now be headed by Aida Balayeva. She had served as Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration since January 2022. But after the AP's reorganization, she was removed from office. Note that Balayeva is not a novice in this field. She was already the Minister of Information and Public Development. And active steps are expected from her, including on the new law on mass media, which has several controversial issues and is in need of a professional approach.   

The Ministry of Transport's head will be Marat Karabayev. He had previously served as Minister of Industry and Infrastructure Development.


The new ministries of Water Resources and Irrigation, as well as industry and construction are still without leaders. However, new heads have received appointments to existing departments.

Arman Shakkaliyev has been appointed to the post of Minister of Trade and Integration. Prior to this appointment, Shakkaliyev served as the First Vice Minister of Trade and Integration of the Republic of Kazakhstan. Svetlana Zhakupova, who for about three months was the Commissioner for the rights of socially vulnerable categories of the population under the President, received the post of Minister of Labor and Social Protection of the Population. It should be noted that earlier, for almost three years, she worked as a senior UN expert. 

Alikhan Smailov has already introduced the new ministers to the government. He wished all the newly appointed ministers and the teams of the relevant departments fruitful work. And a few hours before that, Smailov held a regular meeting of the government, where he outlined which areas the ministries should focus on and gave a number of instructions.

Original Author: Victoria Ilyina

DISCLAIMER: This is a translated piece. The text has been modified, the content is the same. Please refer to the original piece in Russian for accuracy.

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