During a working visit to the Kostanay region, Kazakhstan's Minister of Transport Marat Karabayev met with the region’s citizens to address key transportation issues, QazMonitor reports citing the Ministry’s press service.
The meeting drew approximately 70 local entrepreneurs, activists, representatives from industrial sectors, and media, collectively highlighting concerns over the deteriorating state of the region's transportation infrastructure.
Attendees voiced concerns about insufficient bus services within and between cities, substandard roads, and a lackluster railway service. Moreover, the minister fielded inquiries regarding the feasibility of reconstructing the Kostanay airport, especially considering the region's low demand for air transport due to high ticket prices.
"The affordability of flights is a frequently discussed issue among the general public. We acknowledge that tickets are expensive. Currently, we are exploring the potential entry of a new low-cost carrier and an international airline into the Kazakh market. Increased competition is expected to drive down ticket prices. Moreover, the growing prosperity of citizens is evident in the 27% surge in demand for air transportation over the past year. To meet this demand, we have been actively acquiring new aircraft. This year, we are acquiring 11 more aircraft, bringing the total to 100 in Kazakhstan. By 2025, our plan is for domestic passenger airlines to have a fleet of 145 aircraft. We also plan to launch new air routes," said Marat Karabayev.
Citizens have also registered for personal meetings with the minister to discuss issues related to bus transportation and the operations of ride-hailing aggregators such as Yandex Taxi and Indriver. Following these discussions, Minister Karabayev invited citizens to submit proposals for addressing the identified issues and scheduled a follow-up meeting next week for a detailed examination and resolution of challenges faced by carriers.