Retail trade increased by 9% in monetary terms in 2015. Despite the positive indicator, this growth was the slowest in the past five years. In 2014, annual growth stood at 20%. In real terms the sector grew by 11%. This positive growth trend continued until September 2015 when it growth turned negative 0.7%. The fall in real terms lasted until April 2016, reaching the level of April 2015. However, in May the sector recovered and growth reached 2.2% that month and 7.4% in June. In monetary terms the sector grew by 24% year on year in the first half of 2016.
In January-June 2016 the highest share in total retail trade was claimed by the city of Almaty with 29%. The southern capital was followed by Astana with 11%. East Kazakhstan Region, Karaganda Region and South Kazakhstan Region accounted for a combined 24%, while Aktobe Region’s share was 9%. These regions accounted for a combined 73%, while the remaining regions accounted for 27%. Almaty and Astana have not practically changed their shares in the past five years, retaining dominant positions.
Among major regions, the highest growth in January-June was posted in Almaty – 27% in nominal terms. Astana and East Kazakhstan Region were also among the top three.
In real terms the sector showed signs of recovery following contraction in the first quarter of 2016. We consider this situation in the market as an effect of short-term stimulus to the economy by high levels of consumer inflation.