New Reporting Requirements for Foreign Non-Commercial Organizations in Kazakhstan

8 July 2005

By the Law “On introduction of amendments and addenda into several legislative acts on matters assuring national security” of July 8, 2005 all rep offices of foreign non-commercial organizations in Kazakhstan have a new statutory duty: to publish annual reports on their operation in Kazakhstan.

The text of the new amendment, Paragraph 3 of Article 41 of the Law on Non-commercial Organizations, establishing the new reporting requirement is given below:

"Branches and representations (separate subdivisions) of foreign and international non-commercial organizations, conducting activity in the territory of the Republic of Kazakhstan, shall annually publish in printed media the information on their activities, including information on their founders, composition/structure of their property, sources of formation of and directions of funds’ spending."

The first year to report under the new Law shall be 2005. There are no other requirements or procedures established for such duty. In the absence of strict regulations one can expect that the concept of “reasonable time” will be most likely applied by government auditors authorized to enforce this new requirement. The body responsible to control and punish for non-compliance with the new requirement is the General Prosecutor’s Office (old friends of foreign NGOs in Kazakhstan, as it become obvious in 2005). The sanction applicable is the suspension of a representative office’s operation for the period from 3 to 6 months. All offices have a legitimate excuse for not-publishing their report until March 31, 2006 – the deadline for annual taxation reports to be filed.

USAID expects to provide specific recommendations for US organizations operating in Kazakhstan after consulting with Government of Kazakhstan counterparts.