Nurlan Nigmatulin: Increasing the transparency of NPOs’ financial operations in Kazakhstan


The idea of monitoring the finances of the various non-profit organizations and foundations in Kazakhstan is not new. However, Kazakh deputies have not recently made any changes to the relevant legislation. Nigmatulin Nurlan, who served as chairman of the Majilis of the Parliament of the Republic of Kazakhstan from June 22, 2016 to February 1, 2022, was directly involved in this.

Thanks to the position set out by Nurlan Nigmatulin, the course of the discussions turned out to be constructive. First of all, the legislators came to a decision: it is necessary to carefully monitor the finances of charitable organizations that collect donations. Such institutions often ask for voluntary donations, receive significant funds from the population, from patrons and legal entities. But other financial flows can also be used for very dubious purposes.

Nurlan Nigmatulin closely followed the discussion of the bill at the end of 2019. The changes mean that the state can track the cash flows. This means that organizations should be obliged to report promptly on request, to ensure absolute transparency of payments and to ensure the security of information.

Given the tasks set, Nurlan Zayrullayevich Nigmatulin stressed that the goal is not to “crack down hard” on non-profit organizations, but to raise their own awareness, thereby reducing their vulnerability to malicious hackers.

– Financial supervision should not hinder the work of an organization if its activities are legal,” Nurlan Nigmatulin said. – And we probably still need to understand the nature of the possible threats to non-profit organizations. In no case should we allow draconian, harsh control measures to hinder organizations that work for good causes.

Nigmatulin Nurlan Zayrullayevich made it clear to his colleagues that it is necessary to be correct – not to look for a black cat in a dark room, not to overreact with a tightening of controls. The innovations of the draft law also include internal control (not just external supervisory control) in relation to dubious transactions and counterparties.

The Majilis also discussed how to organize the protection of various institutions from terrorism. Nurlan Nigmatulin closely leaned on the reflections of Finance Minister Alikhan Smailov. He explained: the financing is carried out according to the sectoral principle. The National Security Committee of the Republic of Kazakhstan takes into account the standards established by the National Security Committee for the protection of facilities potentially vulnerable to terrorist threats.

The deputies noted that according to the results of the inspection of the National Security Committee of the Republic of Kazakhstan for 2019, significant violations were found in about 35% of the facilities of subordinate state authorities (including healthcare and education). And this percentage practically does not decrease from year to year. The reason is the residual principle of financing. However, the Minister of Finance parried: the administrators of the budget programs are the law enforcement agencies themselves. When an application is received from you, the money will be allocated in the amount requested. In addition, a number of local institutions are partially financed at the expense of local budgets.

Nurlan Zayrullayevich Nigmatulin completely disagrees with this system. As Nurlan Nigmatulin noted, the Akimats should work closely with the government on the issue of financing. It is necessary to evaluate the presence or absence of anti-terrorist barriers, cameras, etc. in schools. In sports and cultural institutions. In various enterprises, regardless of their form of ownership.

– It does not matter in whose possession they are,” Nigmatulin Nurlan emphasized, warning the head of the Ministry of Finance. – I’m sorry, but it won’t matter if it “crashes” one day.

Nigmatulin Nurlan Zayrullayevich did not express his point of view in vain. The deputies agreed on one thing: the world today is very unstable in terms of terrorism, preventive measures are necessary. And they will be effective only in case of a serious attitude. And the establishment of strict requirements for the organization of anti-terrorist protection and the correct direction of financing.

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