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Kazakhstan ( kk, Қазақстан, Qazaqstan; russian: Казахстан, Kazakhstan), officially the Republic of Kazakhstan,; russian: Республика Казахстан, Respublika Kazakhstan, link=no) is a country located mainly in
Central Asia Central Asia is a region in Asia Asia () is 's largest and most populous , located primarily in the and . It shares the continental of with the continent of and the continental landmass of with both Europe and . Asia covers an area ...

Central Asia
. It borders
Russia Russia ( rus, link=no, Россия, Rossiya, ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of . There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because th ...

Russia
in the north and west,
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in . It is the world's , with a of more than 1.4 billion. China spans five geographical and 14 different countries, the in the world after . Covering an area of ap ...

China
in the east, and
Kyrgyzstan russian: Киргизская Республика, Kirgizskaya Respublika , image_flag = Flag of Kyrgyzstan.svg , image_coat = Emblem of Kyrgyzstan.svg , symbol_type = Emblem , motto = " ...

Kyrgyzstan
,
Uzbekistan Uzbekistan (, ; uz, Ozbekiston, ), officially the Republic of Uzbekistan ( uz, Ozbekiston Respublikasi), is a landlocked country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It is often referred to as the land ...

Uzbekistan
, and
Turkmenistan Turkmenistan ( or ; tk, Türkmenistan, ), also known as Turkmenia, is a Landlocked country, landlocked country in Central Asia, bordered by Kazakhstan to the Kazakhstan-Turkmenistan border, northwest, Uzbekistan to the Turkmenistan–Uzbekista ...

Turkmenistan
in the south. The capital is
Nur-Sultan Nur-Sultan (; ; kz, Нұр-Сұлтан, Nūr-Sūltan; russian: Нур-Султан), formerly known as Akmolinsk (russian: Акмолинск, Akmolinsk), Tselinograd (russian: Целиногра́д), and Astana (, cyrl, Астана), is t ...
, formerly known as Astana. It was moved from
Almaty Almaty (; ; cyrl, Алматы), formerly known as Alma-Ata and Verny (russian: Верный), is the largest city in Kazakhstan, with a population of about 2,000,000 people, about 11% of the country's total population, and more than 2.7 milli ...

Almaty
, the country's largest city, in 1997. Kazakhstan is the world's largest
landlocked country A landlocked country is a country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It is often referred to as the land of an individual's birth, residence or citizenship. A country may be an independent sovereign s ...
, the world's largest Muslim-majority country by land area, and the ninth-largest country in the world. It has a population of 18.8 million, and one of the lowest population densities in the world, at fewer than 6 people per square kilometre (15 people per sq mi). The territory of Kazakhstan has historically been inhabited by nomadic groups and empires. In antiquity, the nomadic
Scythians The Scythians (from grc, Σκύθης , ) or Scyths, also known as Saka and Sakae ( ; egy, 𓋴𓎝𓎡𓈉 The ancient Egyptian Hill-country or "Foreign land" hieroglyph (𓈉) is a member of the sky, earth, and water hieroglyphs. A ...
inhabited the land and the Persian
Achaemenid Empire The Achaemenid Empire (; peo, 𐎧𐏁𐏂, translit=Xšāça, translation=The Empire), also called the First Persian Empire, was an ancient Iranian Iranian may refer to: * Iran Iran ( fa, ایران ), also called Persia and offi ...

Achaemenid Empire
expanded towards the southern territory of the modern country.
Turkic Turkic may refer to: * anything related to the country of Turkey * Turkic languages, a language family of at least thirty-five documented languages ** Turkic alphabets (disambiguation) ** Turkish language, the most widely spoken Turkic language * T ...
nomads A nomad ( frm, nomade "people without fixed habitation") is a member of a community without fixed habitation who regularly moves to and from the same areas. Such groups include hunter-gatherers, Nomadic pastoralism, pastoral nomads (owning lives ...

nomads
, who trace their ancestry to many Turkic states such as the
First First or 1st is the ordinal form of the number one (#1). First or 1st may also refer to: *World record A world record is usually the best global and most important performance that is ever recorded and officially verified in a specific skill ...
and
Second Turkic Khaganate , conventional_long_name = Second Turkic Khaganate , image_coat = Tamga of Ashina.png , symbol_type = Tamga of Ashina tribe , government_type = Hereditary monarchy , image_map = Map of Second Turkic Khaganate.png , image_map_alt = Loca ...
s, have inhabited the country throughout its history. In the 13th century, the territory was subjugated by the
Mongol Empire The Mongol Empire of the 13th and 14th centuries was the List of largest empires, largest contiguous land empire in history and the second largest empire by landmass, second only to the British Empire. Originating in Mongolia in East Asia, the ...
under
Genghis Khan Genghis Khan (August 18, 1227), born Temüjin, was the founder and first () of the , which became the in history after his death. He came to power by uniting many of the s of , and, after being proclaimed the universal , or ''Genghis Khan'', he ...

Genghis Khan
. By the 16th century, the
Kazakhs The Kazakhs (also spelled Qazaqs; Kazakh: , , , , , ; the English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medi ...

Kazakhs
emerged as a distinct group, divided into three '' jüz''. The
Russians , native_name_lang = ru , image = , caption = Wedding ceremony in the national Russian tradition. , population = 134 million , popplace = 117,319,000 , region1 = , pop1 = 7,170,00 ...

Russians
began advancing into the
Kazakh steppe The Kazakh Steppe ( kk, Qazaq dalasy, ''Қазақ даласы'', also Uly dala, ''Ұлы дала'' "Great Steppe"), also called the Great Dala, ecoregion An ecoregion (ecological region) or ecozone (ecological zone) is an ecology, ecological ...
in the 18th century, and by the mid-19th century, they nominally ruled all of Kazakhstan as part of the
Russian Empire The Russian Empire, . commonly referred to as Imperial Russia, was a historical that extended across and from 1721, succeeding the following the that ended the . The Empire lasted until the was proclaimed by the that took power after the ...
. Following the 1917
Russian Revolution The Russian Revolution was a period of political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, or other forms of Power (social and political), power relatio ...
, and subsequent
civil war A civil war, also known as an intrastate war in polemology, is a war between organized groups within the same Sovereign state, state (or country). The aim of one side may be to take control of the country or a region, to achieve independen ...
, the territory of Kazakhstan was reorganised several times. In 1936, it was made the
Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic ; kk, Қазақ Кеңестік Социалистік Республикасы, ''Qazaq Keńestik Sosıalıstik Respýblıkasy'') *1991: Republic of Kazakhstan (russian: Республика Казахстан; kk, Қазақстан Респу ...
, part of the
Soviet Union The Soviet Union,. officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. (USSR),. was a that spanned during its existence from 1922 to 1991. It was nominally a of multiple national ; in practice and were highly until its final years. The ...
. Kazakhstan was the last of the
Soviet republics The Republics of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics or the Union Republics ( rus, Сою́зные Респу́блики, r=Soyúznye Respúbliki) were ethnically based administrative units of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (US ...
to declare independence during the
dissolution of the Soviet Union The dissolution of the Soviet Union, also negatively connoted as rus, Разва́л Сове́тского Сою́за, r=Razvál Sovétskovo Sojúza, ''Ruining of the Soviet Union''. (1988–1991) was the process of internal political, ...
in 1991. Human rights organisations have described the Kazakh government as authoritarian, and regularly describe Kazakhstan's human rights situation as poor. Kazakhstan is the most dominant nation of Central Asia economically and politically, generating 60% of the region's GDP, primarily through its oil and gas industry. It also has vast mineral resources, and is officially a democratic, secular, unitary, constitutional republic with a diverse cultural heritage. Kazakhstan is a member of the
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization An intergovernmental organization (IGO) is an organization composed primarily of sovereign states (referred to as ''member states''), or of other organizations through formal ...

United Nations
(UN),
WTO The World Trade Organization (WTO) is an intergovernmental organization An intergovernmental organization (IGO) or international organization is an organization composed primarily of sovereign states (referred to as ''member states''), or of ...
,
CIS Cis or cis- may refer to: Places * Cis, Trentino, in Italy * In Poland: ** Cis, Świętokrzyskie Voivodeship, south-central ** Cis, Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship, north Math, science and biology * cis (mathematics) is a mathematical not ...

CIS
, the
Shanghai Cooperation Organization russian: Шанхайская организация сотрудничества , image = , caption = , logo = SCO logo.svg , map = SCO MAP 10 July 2015 - Including two new permanent me ...

Shanghai Cooperation Organization
(SCO), the
Eurasian Economic Union The Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU)EAEU is the acronym is used in thorganisation’s website However, many media outlets use the acronym EEU. is an economic union of states located in Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the region of the Europea ...

Eurasian Economic Union
, CSTO,
OSCE The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) is the world's largest security-oriented intergovernmental organization An intergovernmental organization (IGO) or international organization is an organization composed primarily o ...
,
OIC The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC; ar, منظمة التعاون الإسلامي, Munaẓẓama at-Taʿāwun al-ʾIslāmiyy; french: Organisation de la coopération islamique), formerly the Organisation of the Islamic Conference ...
,
CCTS
CCTS
, and TURKSOY.


Etymology

The name "Kazakh" comes from the ancient Turkic word , "to wander", reflecting the Kazakhs'
nomadic A nomad ( frm, nomade "people without fixed habitation") is a member of a community without fixed habitation who regularly moves to and from the same areas. Such groups include hunter-gatherer A hunter-gatherer is a human Humans (''Homo ...
culture. The term "
Cossack The Cossacks * russian: казаки́ or * be, казакi * pl, Kozacy * cs, kozáci * sk, kozáci * hu, kozákok, cazacii * fi, Kasakat, cazacii * et, Kasakad, cazacii are a group of predominantly East Slavic East Slavic may refer ...

Cossack
" is of the same origin. The
Persian Persian may refer to: * People and things from Iran, historically called ''Persia'' in the English language ** Persians, Persian people, the majority ethnic group in Iran, not to be conflated with the Iranian peoples ** Persian language, an Iranian ...
suffix means "land" or "place of", so ''Kazakhstan'' can be literally translated as "land of the wanderers". Though the term traditionally referred to only , including those living in China, Russia, Turkey, Uzbekistan and other neighbouring countries, the term ''Kazakh'' is increasingly being used to refer to any inhabitant of Kazakhstan, including non-Kazakhs.


History

Kazakhstan has been inhabited since the
Paleolithic The Paleolithic or Palaeolithic or Palæolithic (), also called the Old Stone Age (from Greek wikt:παλαιός, palaios - old, lithos - stone), is a period in prehistory Prehistory, also known as pre-literary history, is the period of ...
era. Pastoralism developed during the
Neolithic The Neolithic period is the final division of the Stone Age The Stone Age was a broad prehistoric Prehistory, also known as pre-literary history, is the period of human history Human history, also known as world history, is t ...
, as the region's climate and terrain are best suited for a nomadic lifestyle. The Kazakh territory was a key constituent of the Eurasian trading Steppe Route, the ancestor of the terrestrial Silk Roads. Archaeologists believe that humans first domesticated the horse (i.e., ponies) in the region's vast steppes. During recent prehistoric times, Central Asia was inhabited by groups such as the possibly Proto-Indo-European
Afanasievo culture The Afanasievo culture, or Afanasevo culture (Russian Russian refers to anything related to Russia, including: *Russians (русские, ''russkiye''), an ethnic group of the East Slavic peoples, primarily living in Russia and neighboring countr ...

Afanasievo culture
, later early Indo-Iranians cultures such as
Andronovo The Andronovo culture is a collection of similar local Bronze Age The Bronze Age is a prehistoric Periodization, period that was characterized by the use of bronze, in some areas proto-writing, and other early features of urban civilizat ...

Andronovo
,: "Archaeologists are now generally agreed that the Andronovo culture of the Central Steppe region in the second millennium BC is to be equated with the Indo-Iranians." and later Indo-Iranians such as the
Saka The Saka, Śaka, Shaka, Śāka or Sacae ( ; Kharosthi The Kharosthi script, also spelled Kharoshthi or Kharoṣṭhī (Kharosthi: 𐨑𐨪𐨆𐨯𐨠𐨁) was an ancient Indian script used in Gandhara (now Pakistan and north-eastern Afg ...

Saka
and
Massagetae The Massagetae, or Massageteans, (Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its popul ...
. "Modern scholars have mostly used the name Saka to refer to Iranians of the Eastern Steppe and Tarim Basin" "In modern scholarship the name 'Sakas' is reserved for the ancient tribes of northern and eastern Central Asia and Eastern Turkestan to distinguish them from the related Massagetae of the Aral region and the Scythians of the Pontic steppes. These tribes spoke Iranian languages, and their chief occupation was nomadic pastoralism." Other groups included the nomadic
Scythians The Scythians (from grc, Σκύθης , ) or Scyths, also known as Saka and Sakae ( ; egy, 𓋴𓎝𓎡𓈉 The ancient Egyptian Hill-country or "Foreign land" hieroglyph (𓈉) is a member of the sky, earth, and water hieroglyphs. A ...
and the Persian
Achaemenid Empire The Achaemenid Empire (; peo, 𐎧𐏁𐏂, translit=Xšāça, translation=The Empire), also called the First Persian Empire, was an ancient Iranian Iranian may refer to: * Iran Iran ( fa, ایران ), also called Persia and offi ...

Achaemenid Empire
in the southern territory of the modern country. In 329 BC,
Alexander the Great Alexander III of Macedon ( grc-gre, Αλέξανδρος}, ; 20/21 July 356 BC – 10/11 June 323 BC), commonly known as Alexander the Great, was a king (') of the kingdom of and a member of the . He was born in in 356 BC and succeeded his ...

Alexander the Great
and his
Macedonian Macedonian most often refers to someone or something from or related to Macedonia (disambiguation), Macedonia. Macedonian may specifically refer to: People Modern * Macedonians (ethnic group), the South Slavic ethnic group primarily associated w ...
army fought in the Battle of Jaxartes against the
Scythians The Scythians (from grc, Σκύθης , ) or Scyths, also known as Saka and Sakae ( ; egy, 𓋴𓎝𓎡𓈉 The ancient Egyptian Hill-country or "Foreign land" hieroglyph (𓈉) is a member of the sky, earth, and water hieroglyphs. A ...
along the Jaxartes River, now known as the
Syr Darya uz, Sirdaryo, Сирдарё tg, Сирдарё , name_native_lang = , name_other = Jaxartes, Seyhun , name_etymology = unknown , image = Syr Darya.jpg , image_size = 290px , image_caption = Syr Dary ...

Syr Darya
along the southern border of modern Kazakhstan.


Cuman-Kipchak and Golden Horde

The
Cuman The Cumans (or Kumans), also known as Polovtsians or Polovtsy (plural only, from the Russian exonym An endonym (from Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the ...
entered the steppes of modern-day Kazakhstan around the early 11th century, where they later joined with the Kipchak and established the vast Cuman-Kipchak confederation. While ancient cities
Taraz Taraz ( kz, Тараз, translit=Taraz ; known to Europeans as Talas) is a city and the administrative centerAn administrative centre is a seat of regional administration or local government, or a county town, or the place where the central admin ...
(Aulie-Ata) and Hazrat-e Turkestan had long served as important way-stations along the
Silk Road The Silk Road () was and is a network of trade routes connecting the Eastern world, East and Western culture, West, from the 2nd century BCE to the 18th century CE. It was central to the economic, cultural, political, and religious interactions ...

Silk Road
connecting Asia and Europe, true political consolidation began only with the Mongol rule of the early 13th century. Under the
Mongol Empire The Mongol Empire of the 13th and 14th centuries was the List of largest empires, largest contiguous land empire in history and the second largest empire by landmass, second only to the British Empire. Originating in Mongolia in East Asia, the ...
, first strictly structured administrative districts (Ulus) were established.
Further, during
Golden Horde The Golden Horde, self-designated as Ulug Ulus, 'Great State' in Turkic, was originally a Mongol The Mongols ( mn, Монголчууд, , ''Mongolchuud'', ; russian: Монголы, ) are an ethnic group to the , and the of Russia. ...
(Ulus of Jochi) period
Turco-Mongol tradition Turco-Mongol or the Turko-Mongol tradition was an ethnocultural synthesis that arose in Asia during the 14th century, among the ruling elites of the Golden Horde The Golden Horde ( tt, , , ), self-designated as Ulug Ulus, 'Great State' in T ...
emerged, where turkicized descendants would accept
Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see interjection An interjection is a word or ex ...
and continue to reign over the lands.


Kazakh Khanate

In 1465,
Kazakh Khanate The Kazakh Khanate ( kk, Қазақ Хандығы, , ) was a successor of the Golden Horde The Golden Horde ( tt, , , ), self-designated as Ulug Ulus, 'Great State' in Turkic, was originally a Mongols, Mongol and later Turkicized khan ...

Kazakh Khanate
emerged as a result of dissolution of
Golden Horde The Golden Horde, self-designated as Ulug Ulus, 'Great State' in Turkic, was originally a Mongol The Mongols ( mn, Монголчууд, , ''Mongolchuud'', ; russian: Монголы, ) are an ethnic group to the , and the of Russia. ...
. Established by
Janibek Khan Janibek Khan (, , ) was a co-founder and the second Khan (title), Khan of Kazakh Khanate from 1473-1480. He was a son of Barak Khan, Barak, Khan of the Golden Horde from 1422 to 1427. Barak Khan's father was Koirichak, grandson of Urus Khan who wa ...
and
Kerei Khan Kerei Khan (, ) was a co-founder and the first Khan (title), Khan of the Kazakh Khanate from c. 1465 to 1473. History There are currently two versions how the first dynasty of the Kazakh khans originated. According to one of them is that they were ...
, it continued to be ruled by to
Turco-Mongol The Turko-Mongol tradition was an ethnocultural An ethnoreligious group (or ethno-religious group) is an ethnic group An ethnic group or ethnicity is a grouping of people who identify with each other on the basis of shared attributes that dis ...
clan of Tore (
Jochi Jochi ( mn, Зүчи, ; kk, Joşı, Жошы, جوشى; ; crh, Cuçi, Джучи, جوچى; also spelled Djochi, Jöchi and Juchi; c. 1182– February 1227) was a Mongol army commander who was the eldest son of Genghis Khan ''Chinggis Kh ...
d dynasty).
Throughout this period, traditional
nomad A nomad ( frm, nomade "people without fixed habitation") is a member of a community without fixed habitation who regularly moves to and from the same areas. Such groups include hunter-gatherer A hunter-gatherer is a human Humans (''Homo ...

nomad
ic life and a livestock-based economy continued to dominate the
steppe In physical geography, a steppe () is an ecoregion characterized by grassland plains without trees apart from those near rivers and lakes. Steppe biomes may include: * the montane grasslands and shrublands biome * the temperate grassland ...

steppe
. In the 15th century, a distinct identity began to emerge among the
Turkic Turkic may refer to: * anything related to the country of Turkey * Turkic languages, a language family of at least thirty-five documented languages ** Turkic alphabets (disambiguation) ** Turkish language, the most widely spoken Turkic language * T ...
tribes. This was followed by the Kazakh War of Independence where the khanate gained its sovereignty from the
Shaybanids The Shaybanids ( fa, سلسله شیبانیان) were a Persianized Persianization (), or Persification (), is a sociological Sociology is the study of society A society is a Social group, group of individuals involved in persiste ...
. The process was consolidated by the mid-16th century with the appearance of the
Kazakh language File:WIKITONGUES- Mereinur speaking Kazakh.webm, A Kazakh speaker, recorded in Kazakhstan Kazakh or Qazaq (Kazakh alphabets, Latin: or , Kazakh alphabets, Cyrillic: or , Kazakh alphabets, Arabic: or , , ), is a Turkic languages, Turkic langua ...
, culture, and economy. Nevertheless, the region was the focus of ever-increasing disputes between the native Kazakh
emir Emir (; ar, أمير ' ), sometimes Romanization of Arabic, transliterated amir, amier, or ameer, is a word of Arabic language, Arabic origin that can refer to a male monarch, aristocratic, aristocrat, holder of high-ranking military or politic ...

emir
s and the neighbouring Persian-speaking peoples to the south. At its height, the Khanate would rule parts of Central Asia and control
Cumania The name Cumania originated as the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through ...
. By the early 17th century, the Kazakh Khanate was struggling with the impact of tribal rivalries, which had effectively divided the population into the Great, Middle and Little (or Small) hordes ('' jüz''). Political disunion, tribal rivalries, and the diminishing importance of overland trade routes between east and west weakened the Kazakh Khanate. Khiva Khanate used this opportunity and annexed
Mangyshlak Peninsula Mangyshlak or Mangghyshlaq Peninsula ( kk, Mańǵystaý túbegi; russian: Полуостров Мангышла́к, translit=Poluostrov Mangyshlák) is a large peninsula located in western Kazakhstan Kazakhstan,, * russian: Казахста ...
. Uzbek rule there lasted two centuries until the Russian arrival. During the 17th century, the Kazakhs fought
Oirats Oirats ( mn, Ойрад, ''Oirad'', or , Oird; ; xal-RU, Өөрд; in the past, also Eleuths) are the westernmost group of the Mongols The Mongols ( mn, Монголчууд, , ''Mongolchuud'', ; russian: Монголы, ) are an East ...
, a federation of western
Mongol The Mongols ( mn, Монголчууд, , ''Mongolchuud'', ; russian: Монголы, ) are an East Asian East Asia is the eastern region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") ...

Mongol
tribes, including the Dzungar. The beginning of the 18th century marked the zenith of the Kazakh Khanate. During this period the Little Horde participated in the 1723–1730 war against the Dzungar Khanate, following their "Great Disaster"
invasion An invasion is a military offensive An offensive is a military operation A military operation is the coordinated military action War is an intense armed conflict between State (polity), states, governments, Society, societies, or par ...
of Kazakh territories. Under the leadership of
Abul Khair Khan Image:Abulkhair khan.jpg, 200px, Postage stamp, Stamp of Kazakhstan devoted to Abul Khair Khan, 2001 (Michel 316) Abulhair Khan, Abul Khair Khan ( kz, Әбілқайыр хан, Ábilqaıyr han) (1693–1748) was leader of the Kazakhs, Kazakh Littl ...
, the Kazakhs won major victories over the Dzungar at the Bulanty River in 1726, and at the Battle of Anrakay in 1729.
Ablai Khan Wali-ullah Abul-Mansur Khan better known as Abylai Khan ( kk, Абылай (Әбілмансұр) хан, Abylaı (Ábilmansur) han) (May 23, 1711 — May 23, 1781) was a Kazakhs, Kazakh Khan (title), khan of the Middle Kazakh jüz of Kazakhstan K ...
participated in the most significant battles against the Dzungar from the 1720s to the 1750s, for which he was declared a "''batyr''" ("hero") by the people. The Kazakhs suffered from the frequent raids against them by the Volga
Kalmyks The Kalmyks (Kalmyk Oirat, Kalmyk: Хальмгуд, ''Xaľmgud'', Mongolian language, Mongolian: Халимагууд, ''Halimaguud''; russian: Калмыки, translit=Kalmyki, archaism, archaically anglicism, anglicised as ''Calmucks'') are ...
. The
Kokand Khanate The Khanate of Kokand ( fa, ; ''Khānneshin-e Khoqand'', chg, ''Khoqand Khānligi'') was a Central Asia, Central Asian polity in Fergana Valley, Central Asia that existed from 1709–1876 within the territory of eastern Uzbekistan, modern Kyrg ...
used the weakness of Kazakh jüzs after Dzungar and Kalmyk raids and conquered present Southeastern Kazakhstan, including
Almaty Almaty (; ; cyrl, Алматы), formerly known as Alma-Ata and Verny (russian: Верный), is the largest city in Kazakhstan, with a population of about 2,000,000 people, about 11% of the country's total population, and more than 2.7 milli ...

Almaty
, the formal capital in the first quarter of the 19th century. Also, the
Emirate of Bukhara The Emirate of Bukhara ( uz, Buxoro amirligi) was a Central Asian polity that existed from 1785 to 1920 in what is now modern-day Uzbekistan Uzbekistan (, ; uz, Ozbekiston, ), officially the Republic of Uzbekistan ( uz, Ozbekiston Respublikas ...
ruled
Shymkent Şymkent (; Шымкент, شىمكەنت; Yañalif: Şьmkent), known until 1993 as Chimkent ( uz, Chimkent, Чимкент, چىمكېنت; Yañalif: Çimkent ()); russian: Чимкент, translit=Čimkent ()), is a city in Kazakhstan ...

Shymkent
before the Russians gained dominance.


Russian Kazakhstan

In the first half of the 18th century, the Russian Empire constructed the Irtysh line, a series of forty-six forts and ninety-six redoubts, including
Omsk Omsk (; rus, Омск, p=omsk) is the administrative centerAn administrative centre is a seat of regional administration or local government, or a county town, or the place where the central administration of a Township, commune is located. In ...
(1716),
Semipalatinsk Semey ( kk, Semeı; cyrl, Семей), until 2007 known as Semipalatinsk (russian: Семипалатинск) and in 1917–1920 as Alash-kala ( kz, Алаш-қала, ''Alaş-qala''), is a city in Kazakhstan Kazakhstan,, * russian: К ...
(1718),
Pavlodar Pavlodar ( ; ) is a city in northeastern Kazakhstan and the capital of Pavlodar Region. It is located 450 km northeast of the national capital Nur-Sultan and 405 km southeast of the Russian city of Omsk along the Irtysh River. , the ...
(1720),
Orenburg Orenburg (russian: Оренбург, p=ərʲɪnˈburk) is the administrative center of Orenburg Oblast, Russia. It lies on the Ural River, southeast of Moscow. Orenburg is also very close to the Kazakhstan-Russia border, border with Kazakhstan. ...

Orenburg
(1743) and
Petropavl Petropavl ( kk, Петропавл, Petropavl) or Petropavlovsk ( rus, Петропавловск, r=Petropavlovsk), is a city on the Ishim River in northern Kazakhstan Kazakhstan,, * russian: Казахстан, Kazakhstan, officially th ...
ovsk (1752), to prevent Kazakh and Oirat raids into Russian territory. In the late 18th century the Kazakhs took advantage of
Pugachev's Rebellion Pugachev's Rebellion (, ''Vosstaniye Pugachyova''; also called the Peasants' War 1773–75 or Cossack Rebellion) of 1773-75 was the principal revolt in a series of popular rebellions that took place in the Russian Empire The Russian Empire, ...
, which was centred on the Volga area, to raid Russian and
Volga German , Germany, early 1920's The Volga Germans (german: Wolgadeutsche or ''Russlanddeutsche'' (a more generic term for all Russian Germans The German minority population in Russia, Ukraine and the Soviet Union stemmed from several sources and arrived ...
settlements. In the 19th century, the
Russian Empire The Russian Empire, . commonly referred to as Imperial Russia, was a historical that extended across and from 1721, succeeding the following the that ended the . The Empire lasted until the was proclaimed by the that took power after the ...
began to expand its influence into Central Asia. The "
Great Game "The Great Game" was a political and diplomatic confrontation that existed for most of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century between the British Empire and the Russian Empire, over Afghanistan and neighbouring territories in Central ...
" period is generally regarded as running from approximately 1813 to the
Anglo-Russian Convention of 1907 The Anglo-Russian Convention of 1907 (russian: Англо-Русская Конвенция 1907 г., translit=Anglo-Russkaya Konventsiya 1907 g.), or Convention between the United Kingdom and Russia relating to Persia, Afghanistan, and Tibet (К ...
. The
tsar Tsar ( or ), also spelled ''czar'', ''tzar'', or ''csar'', is a Royal and noble ranks, title used to designate Orthodox Slavs, East and South Slavic monarchs. In this last capacity it lends its name to a system of government, tsarist autocra ...

tsar
s effectively ruled over most of the territory belonging to what is now the Republic of Kazakhstan. The Russian Empire introduced a system of administration and built military garrisons and barracks in its effort to establish a presence in Central Asia in the so-called "Great Game" for dominance in the area against the
British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other Dependent territory, territories ruled or administered by the United Kingdom and its predecessor states. ...

British Empire
, which was extending its influence from the south in India and Southeast Asia. Russia built its first outpost,
Orsk Orsk (russian: Орск) is the second largest city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2 ...

Orsk
, in 1735. Russia introduced the Russian language in all schools and governmental organisations. Russian efforts to impose its system aroused the resentment by the
Kazakh people The Kazakhs (also spelled Kazaks, Qazaqs; Kazakh language, Kazakh: , , , ; the English language, English name is transliteration, transliterated from Russian language, Russian; russian: Казахи) are a Turkic peoples, Turkic ethnic group ...
, and, by the 1860s, some Kazakhs resisted Russia's rule. It had disrupted the traditional nomadic lifestyle and livestock-based economy, and people were suffering from hunger and starvation, with some Kazakh tribes being decimated. The Kazakh national movement, which began in the late 19th century, sought to preserve the native language and identity by resisting the attempts of the Russian Empire to assimilate and stifle them. From the 1890s onward, ever-larger numbers of settlers from the Russian Empire began colonising the territory of present-day Kazakhstan, in particular, the province of
Semirechye Zhetysu or Jeti-Suu ( kk, , Жетісу, pronounced ; ky, ''Jeti-Suu'', (), meaning "seven rivers"; also transcribed ''Zhetisu'', ''Jetisuw'', ''Jetysu'', ''Jeti-su'', ''Jity-su'', ''Жетысу'',, United States National Geospatial-Inte ...

Semirechye
. The number of settlers rose still further once the
Trans-Aral Railway The broad gauge A broad-gauge railway is a railway Rail transport (also known as train transport) is a means of transferring passengers and goods on wheeled vehicles running on rails, which are located on tracks. In contrast to road ...
from
Orenburg Orenburg (russian: Оренбург, p=ərʲɪnˈburk) is the administrative center of Orenburg Oblast, Russia. It lies on the Ural River, southeast of Moscow. Orenburg is also very close to the Kazakhstan-Russia border, border with Kazakhstan. ...

Orenburg
to
Tashkent russian: Ташкент , other_name = , settlement_type = Capital city, Capital , image_skyline = , image_caption = Clockwise from top: Skyline of Tashkent, Hilton ...
was completed in 1906. A specially created Migration Department (Переселенческое Управление) in
St. Petersburg Saint Petersburg ( rus, links=no, Санкт-Петербург, a=Ru-Sankt Peterburg Leningrad Petrograd Piter.ogg, r=Sankt-Peterburg, p=ˈsankt pʲɪtʲɪrˈburk), formerly known as Petrograd (1914–1924) and later Leningrad (1924–1991), ...

St. Petersburg
oversaw and encouraged the migration to expand Russian influence in the area. During the 19th century about 400,000 Russians immigrated to Kazakhstan, and about one million Slavs, Germans, Jews, and others immigrated to the region during the first third of the 20th century. Vasile Balabanov was the administrator responsible for the resettlement during much of this time. The competition for land and water that ensued between the Kazakhs and the newcomers caused great resentment against colonial rule during the final years of the
Russian Empire The Russian Empire, . commonly referred to as Imperial Russia, was a historical that extended across and from 1721, succeeding the following the that ended the . The Empire lasted until the was proclaimed by the that took power after the ...
. The most serious uprising, the Central Asian Revolt, occurred in 1916. The Kazakhs attacked Russian and
Cossack The Cossacks * russian: казаки́ or * be, казакi * pl, Kozacy * cs, kozáci * sk, kozáci * hu, kozákok, cazacii * fi, Kasakat, cazacii * et, Kasakad, cazacii are a group of predominantly East Slavic languages, East Slav ...
settlers and military garrisons. The revolt resulted in a series of clashes and in brutal massacres committed by both sides. Both sides resisted the communist government until late 1919.


Kazakh SSR

Following the in
Petrograd Saint Petersburg ( rus, links=no, Санкт-Петербург, a=Ru-Sankt Peterburg Leningrad Petrograd Piter.ogg, r=Sankt-Peterburg, p=ˈsankt pʲɪtʲɪrˈburk), formerly known as Petrograd (1914–1924) and later Leningrad (1924–1991), ...

Petrograd
in November 1917, the Kazakhs (then in Russia officially referred to as "Kirghiz") experienced a brief period of
autonomy In developmental psychology Developmental psychology is the scientific Science () is a systematic enterprise that Scientific method, builds and organizes knowledge in the form of Testability, testable explanations and predictions ...
(the Alash Autonomy) before eventually succumbing to the
Bolshevik The Bolsheviks (Russian Russian refers to anything related to Russia, including: *Russians (русские, ''russkiye''), an ethnic group of the East Slavic peoples, primarily living in Russia and neighboring countries *Rossiyane (росс ...

Bolshevik
s′ rule. On 26 August 1920, the Kirghiz Autonomous Socialist Soviet Republic within the
Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic The Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (Russian SFSR or RSFSR; rus, links=1, Росси́йская Сове́тская Федерати́вная Социалисти́ческая Респу́блика, Rossíyskaya Sovétskaya ...
(RSFSR) was established. The Kirghiz ASSR included the territory of present-day Kazakhstan, but its administrative centre was a mainly Russian-populated town of
Orenburg Orenburg (russian: Оренбург, p=ərʲɪnˈburk) is the administrative center of Orenburg Oblast, Russia. It lies on the Ural River, southeast of Moscow. Orenburg is also very close to the Kazakhstan-Russia border, border with Kazakhstan. ...

Orenburg
. In June 1925, the Kirghiz ASSR was renamed the
Kazak ASSR The Kazakh Autonomous Socialist Soviet Republic (russian: Казахская Автономная Социалистическая Советская Республика; kk, Qazaq Aptonom Sotsijalijstik Sobettik Respuvblijkasь), abbreviated as ...
and its administrative centre was transferred to the town of
Kyzylorda Kyzylorda ( kz, Қызылорда, translit=Qyzylorda, ), formerly known as Kzyl-Orda (russian: Кзыл-Орда), Ak-Mechet (Ак-Мечеть), Perovsk (Перовск), and Fort-Perovsky (Форт-Перовский), is a city in south-cent ...
, and in April 1927 to
Alma-Ata Almaty (; ; cyrl, Алматы), formerly known as Alma-Ata and Verny (russian: Верный), is the largest city in Kazakhstan, with a population of about 2,000,000 people, about 11% of the country's total population, and more than 2.7 milli ...

Alma-Ata
. Soviet repression of the traditional elite, along with forced collectivisation in the late 1920s and 1930s, brought
famine A famine is a widespread scarcity of food Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for an organism In biology, an organism (from Ancient Greek, Greek: ὀργανισμός, ''organismos'') is any individual con ...

famine
and high fatalities, leading to unrest (see also: Famine in Kazakhstan of 1932–33). During the 1930s, some members of the Kazakh intelligentsia were executed – as part of the Political repression in the Soviet Union, policies of political reprisals pursued by the Soviet government in Moscow. On 5 December 1936, the Kazakh Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic (whose territory by then corresponded to that of modern Kazakhstan) was detached from the
Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic The Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (Russian SFSR or RSFSR; rus, links=1, Росси́йская Сове́тская Федерати́вная Социалисти́ческая Респу́блика, Rossíyskaya Sovétskaya ...
(RSFSR) and made the
Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic ; kk, Қазақ Кеңестік Социалистік Республикасы, ''Qazaq Keńestik Sosıalıstik Respýblıkasy'') *1991: Republic of Kazakhstan (russian: Республика Казахстан; kk, Қазақстан Респу ...
, a full Republics of the Soviet Union, union republic of the USSR, one of eleven such republics at the time, along with the Kirghiz Soviet Socialist Republic. The republic was one of the destinations for exiled and convicted persons, as well as for mass resettlements, or deportations affected by the central USSR authorities during the 1930s and 1940s, such as approximately 400,000 Volga Germans deported from the Volga German Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic in September–October 1941, and then later the Greeks in Kazakhstan, Greeks and Deportation of the Crimean Tatars, Crimean Tatars. Deportees and prisoners were interned in some of the biggest Gulag, Soviet labour camps (the Gulag), including Akmol, ALZhIR camp outside Astana, which was reserved for the wives of men considered "enemies of the people". Many moved due to the policy of population transfer in the Soviet Union and others were forced into involuntary settlements in the Soviet Union. The Eastern Front (World War II), Soviet-German War (1941–1945) led to an increase in industrialisation and mineral extraction in support of the war effort. At the time of the USSR's leader Joseph Stalin's death in 1953, however, Kazakhstan still had an overwhelmingly agricultural economy. In 1953, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev initiated the Virgin Lands Campaign designed to turn the traditional pasturelands of Kazakhstan into a major grain-producing region for the Soviet Union. The Virgin Lands policy brought mixed results. However, along with later modernisations under Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev (in power 1964–1982), it accelerated the development of the agricultural sector, which remains the source of livelihood for a large percentage of Kazakhstan's population. Because of the decades of privation, war and resettlement, by 1959 the
Kazakhs The Kazakhs (also spelled Qazaqs; Kazakh: , , , , , ; the English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medi ...

Kazakhs
had become a minority in the country, making up 30% of the population. Ethnic
Russians , native_name_lang = ru , image = , caption = Wedding ceremony in the national Russian tradition. , population = 134 million , popplace = 117,319,000 , region1 = , pop1 = 7,170,00 ...

Russians
accounted for 43%. In 1947, the USSR government, as part of its Soviet atomic bomb project, atomic bomb project, founded an Semipalatinsk Test Site, atomic bomb test site near the north-eastern town of
Semipalatinsk Semey ( kk, Semeı; cyrl, Семей), until 2007 known as Semipalatinsk (russian: Семипалатинск) and in 1917–1920 as Alash-kala ( kz, Алаш-қала, ''Alaş-qala''), is a city in Kazakhstan Kazakhstan,, * russian: К ...
, where the RDS-1, first Soviet nuclear bomb test was conducted in 1949. Hundreds of nuclear tests were conducted until 1989 with adverse consequences for the nation's environment and population. The Anti-nuclear movement in Kazakhstan became a major political force in the late 1980s. In December 1986, mass demonstrations by young ethnic Kazakhs, later called the Jeltoqsan riot, took place in Almaty to protest the replacement of the General Secretary, First Secretary of the Communist Party of Kazakhstan, Communist Party of the Kazakh SSR Dinmukhamed Konayev with Gennady Kolbin from the Russian SFSR. Governmental troops suppressed the unrest, several people were killed, and many demonstrators were jailed. In the waning days of Soviet rule, discontent continued to grow and found expression under Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev's policy of ''glasnost''.


Independence

On 25 October 1990, Kazakhstan declared its sovereignty on its territory as a republic within the Soviet Union. Following the August 1991 aborted 1991 Soviet coup d'état attempt, coup attempt in Moscow, Kazakhstan declared Kazakhstani Independence Day, independence on 16 December 1991, thus becoming the last Soviet republic to declare independence. Ten days later, the Soviet Union itself dissolution of the Soviet Union, ceased to exist. Kazakhstan's communist-era leader, Nursultan Nazarbayev, became the country's first President. Nazarbayev ruled in an authoritarian manner. An emphasis was placed on converting the country's economy to a market economy while political reforms lagged behind economic advances. By 2006, Kazakhstan was generating 60% of the GDP of Central Asia, primarily through its oil industry. In 1997, the government moved the capital to Astana, renamed Nur-Sultan on 23 March 2019, from
Almaty Almaty (; ; cyrl, Алматы), formerly known as Alma-Ata and Verny (russian: Верный), is the largest city in Kazakhstan, with a population of about 2,000,000 people, about 11% of the country's total population, and more than 2.7 milli ...

Almaty
, Kazakhstan's largest city, where it had been established under the Soviet Union.


Geography

As it extends across both sides of the Ural River, considered the dividing line separating Europe and Asia, Kazakhstan is one of only two Landlocked country, landlocked countries in the world that transcontinental countries, has territory in two continents (the other is Azerbaijan). With an area of equivalent in size to Western EuropeKazakhstan is the ninth-largest country and largest landlocked country in the world. While it was part of the
Russian Empire The Russian Empire, . commonly referred to as Imperial Russia, was a historical that extended across and from 1721, succeeding the following the that ended the . The Empire lasted until the was proclaimed by the that took power after the ...
, Kazakhstan lost some of its territory to China's Xinjiang province, and some to Uzbekistan's Karakalpakstan autonomous republic during Soviet years. It shares borders of with Russia, with
Uzbekistan Uzbekistan (, ; uz, Ozbekiston, ), officially the Republic of Uzbekistan ( uz, Ozbekiston Respublikasi), is a landlocked country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It is often referred to as the land ...

Uzbekistan
, with China, with
Kyrgyzstan russian: Киргизская Республика, Kirgizskaya Respublika , image_flag = Flag of Kyrgyzstan.svg , image_coat = Emblem of Kyrgyzstan.svg , symbol_type = Emblem , motto = " ...

Kyrgyzstan
, and with
Turkmenistan Turkmenistan ( or ; tk, Türkmenistan, ), also known as Turkmenia, is a Landlocked country, landlocked country in Central Asia, bordered by Kazakhstan to the Kazakhstan-Turkmenistan border, northwest, Uzbekistan to the Turkmenistan–Uzbekista ...

Turkmenistan
. Major cities include
Nur-Sultan Nur-Sultan (; ; kz, Нұр-Сұлтан, Nūr-Sūltan; russian: Нур-Султан), formerly known as Akmolinsk (russian: Акмолинск, Akmolinsk), Tselinograd (russian: Целиногра́д), and Astana (, cyrl, Астана), is t ...
,
Almaty Almaty (; ; cyrl, Алматы), formerly known as Alma-Ata and Verny (russian: Верный), is the largest city in Kazakhstan, with a population of about 2,000,000 people, about 11% of the country's total population, and more than 2.7 milli ...

Almaty
, Karagandy,
Shymkent Şymkent (; Шымкент, شىمكەنت; Yañalif: Şьmkent), known until 1993 as Chimkent ( uz, Chimkent, Чимкент, چىمكېنت; Yañalif: Çimkent ()); russian: Чимкент, translit=Čimkent ()), is a city in Kazakhstan ...

Shymkent
, Atyrau, and Oskemen. It lies between latitudes 40th parallel north, 40° and 56th parallel north, 56° N, and longitudes 46th meridian east, 46° and 88th meridian east, 88° E. While located primarily in Asia, a small portion of Kazakhstan is also located west of the Urals in Eastern Europe. Kazakhstan's terrain extends west to east from the Caspian Sea to the Altay Mountains and north to south from the plains of Siberia, Western Siberia to the oases and deserts of Central Asia. The Kazakh Steppe (plain), with an area of around , occupies one-third of the country and is the world's largest dry
steppe In physical geography, a steppe () is an ecoregion characterized by grassland plains without trees apart from those near rivers and lakes. Steppe biomes may include: * the montane grasslands and shrublands biome * the temperate grassland ...

steppe
region. The steppe is characterised by large areas of grasslands and sandy regions. Major seas, lakes and rivers include Lake Balkhash, Lake Zaysan, the Charyn Canyon, Charyn River and gorge, the Ili River, Ili, Irtysh River, Irtysh, Ishim River, Ishim, Ural River, Ural and
Syr Darya uz, Sirdaryo, Сирдарё tg, Сирдарё , name_native_lang = , name_other = Jaxartes, Seyhun , name_etymology = unknown , image = Syr Darya.jpg , image_size = 290px , image_caption = Syr Dary ...

Syr Darya
rivers, and the Aral Sea until it largely dried up in one of the world's worst environmental disasters. The Charyn Canyon is long, cutting through a red sandstone plateau and stretching along the Charyn River gorge in northern Tian Shan ("Heavenly Mountains", east of Almaty) at . The steep canyon slopes, columns and arches rise to heights of between . The inaccessibility of the canyon provided a safe haven for a rare ash tree, ''Fraxinus sogdiana'', which survived the Ice Age there and has now also grown in some other areas. Bigach crater, at , is a Pliocene or Miocene asteroid impact crater, in diameter and estimated to be 5±3 million years old.


Natural resources

Kazakhstan has an abundant supply of accessible mineral and fossil fuel resources. Development of petroleum, natural gas, and mineral extractions has attracted most of the over $40 billion in foreign investment in Kazakhstan since 1993 and accounts for some 57% of the nation's industrial output (or approximately 13% of gross domestic product). According to some estimates,Mineral Wealth
homestead.com
Kazakhstan has the second largest uranium, chromium, lead, and zinc reserves; the third largest manganese reserves; the fifth largest copper reserves; and ranks in the top ten for coal, iron, and gold. It is also an exporter of diamonds. Perhaps most significant for economic development, Kazakhstan also currently has the 11th largest proven reserves of both petroleum and natural gas. In total, there are 160 deposits with over of petroleum. Oil explorations have shown that the deposits on the Caspian sea, Caspian shore are only a small part of a much larger deposit. It is said that of oil and of gas could be found in that area. Overall the estimate of Kazakhstan's oil deposits is . However, there are only three Oil refinery, refineries within the country, situated in Atirau, Atyrau,
Pavlodar Pavlodar ( ; ) is a city in northeastern Kazakhstan and the capital of Pavlodar Region. It is located 450 km northeast of the national capital Nur-Sultan and 405 km southeast of the Russian city of Omsk along the Irtysh River. , the ...
, and
Shymkent Şymkent (; Шымкент, شىمكەنت; Yañalif: Şьmkent), known until 1993 as Chimkent ( uz, Chimkent, Чимкент, چىمكېنت; Yañalif: Çimkent ()); russian: Чимкент, translit=Čimkent ()), is a city in Kazakhstan ...

Shymkent
. These are not capable of processing the total crude output, so much of it is exported to Russia. According to the US Energy Information Administration Kazakhstan was producing approximately of oil per day in 2009. Kazakhstan also possesses large deposits of phosphorite. Two of the largest deposits include the Karatau basin with 650 million tonnes of P2O5 and the Chilisai deposit of the :ru:Актобинский фосфоритоносный бассейн, Aqtobe phosphorite basin located in northwestern Kazakhstan, with resources of 500–800 million tonnes of 9% ore. On 17 October 2013, the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) accepted Kazakhstan as "EITI Compliant", meaning that the country has a basic and functional process to ensure the regular disclosure of natural resource revenues.


Climate

Kazakhstan has an "extreme" continental climate, with warm summers and very cold winters. Indeed, Nursultan is the second coldest capital city in the world after Ulaanbaatar. Precipitation (meteorology), Precipitation varies between arid and semi-arid conditions, the winter being particularly dry.


Wildlife

There are ten List of protected areas of Kazakhstan, nature reserves and ten List of national parks of Kazakhstan, national parks in Kazakhstan that provide safe haven for many rare and endangered plants and animals. Common plants are ''Astragalus'', ''Gagea'', ''Allium'', ''Carex'' and ''Oxytropis''; endangered plant species include native wild apple (''Malus sieversii''), wild grape (''Vitis vinifera'') and several wild tulip species (e.g., ''Tulipa greigii'') and rare onion species ''Allium karataviense'', also ''Iris willmottiana'' and ''Tulipa kaufmanniana''. Kazakhstan had a 2019 Forest Landscape Integrity Index mean score of 8.23/10, ranking it 26th globally out of 172 countries. Common mammals include the wolf, red fox, corsac fox, moose, argali (the largest species of sheep), Eurasian lynx, Pallas's cat, and snow leopards, several of which are protected. Kazakhstan's Red Book of Protected Species lists 125 vertebrates including many birds and mammals, and 404 plants including fungi, algae and lichens.


Government and politics


Political system

Officially, Kazakhstan is a democratic, secular, constitutional unitary republic; Nursultan Nazarbayev led the country from 1991 to 2019. He was succeeded by Kassym-Jomart Tokayev. The president may veto legislation that has been passed by the Parliament of Kazakhstan, parliament and is also the commander in chief of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Kazakhstan, armed forces. The prime minister chairs the cabinet of ministers and serves as Kazakhstan's head of government. There are three deputy prime ministers and sixteen ministers in the cabinet. Kazakhstan has a bicameral parliament composed of the ''Majilis'' (the lower house) and Senate of Kazakhstan, senate (the upper house). Single-mandate districts popularly elect 107 seats in the ''Majilis''; there also are ten members elected by party-list vote. The senate has 48 members. Two senators are selected by each of the elected assemblies (mäslihats) of Kazakhstan's sixteen principal Administrative divisions of Kazakhstan, administrative divisions (fourteen regions plus the cities of Nur-Sultan, Almaty, and Shymkent). The president appoints the remaining fifteen senators. ''Majilis'' deputies and the government both have the right of legislative initiative, though the government proposes most legislation considered by the parliament. In 2020, Freedom House rated Kazakhstan as a "consolidated authoritarian regime", stating that freedom of speech is not respected and "Kazakhstan’s electoral laws do not provide for free and fair elections."


Political reforms

Reforms have begun to be implemented after the election of Kassym-Jomart Tokayev in June 2019. Tokayev supports a culture of opposition, public assembly, and loosening rules on forming political parties. In June 2019, on the initiative of the President of Kazakhstan, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev the National Council of Public Trust have been established as a platform in which wider society can discuss different views and strengthen the national conversation regarding government policies and reforms. Text was copied from this source, which is available under
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
In July 2019, the President of Kazakhstan announced a concept of a ‘listening state’ that quickly and efficiently responds to all constructive requests of the country's citizens. A law will be passed to allow representatives from other parties to hold Chair positions on some Parliamentary committees, to foster alternative views and opinions. The minimum membership threshold needed to register a political party will be reduced from 40,000 to 20,000 members. Special places for peaceful rallies in central areas will be allocated and a new draft law outlining the rights and obligations of organisers, participants and observers will be passed. In an effort to increase public safety, President Tokayev has strengthened the penalties for those who commit crimes against individuals.


Elections

Elections in Kazakhstan, Elections to the Majilis in September 2004, yielded a lower house dominated by the pro-government Nur-Otan, Otan Party, headed by President Nazarbayev. Two other parties considered sympathetic to the president, including the agrarian-industrial bloc AIST and the Asar Party, founded by President Nazarbayev's daughter, won most of the remaining seats. The opposition parties which were officially registered and competed in the elections won a single seat. The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe was monitoring the election, which it said fell short of international standards. On 4 December 2005, Nursultan Nazarbayev was re-elected in an apparent landslide victory. The electoral commission announced that he had won over 90% of the vote. The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) concluded the election did not meet international standards despite some improvements in the administration of the election. On 17 August 2007, elections to the lower house of parliament were held and a coalition led by the ruling Nur-Otan party, which included the Asar Party, the Civil Party of Kazakhstan, and the Agrarian Party of Kazakhstan, Agrarian Party, won every seat with 88% of the vote. None of the opposition parties has reached the benchmark 7% level of the seats. Opposition parties made accusations of serious irregularities in the election. In 2010, president Nazarbayev rejected a call from supporters to hold a referendum to keep him in office until 2020. He insisted on presidential elections for a five-year term. In a vote held on 3 April 2011, president Nazarbayev received 95.54% of the vote with 89.9% of registered voters participating. In March 2011, Nazarbayev outlined the progress made toward democracy by Kazakhstan. , Kazakhstan was reported on the Democracy Index by ''The Economist'' as an authoritarian regime. On 26 April 2015, the fifth presidential election was held in Kazakhstan. Nursultan Nazarbayev was re-elected with 97.7% of votes. On 19 March 2019, Nazarbayev announced his resignation from the presidency. Kazakhstan's senate speaker Kassym-Jomart Tokayev became acting president after Nursultan Nazarbayev's resignation. Later, Tokayev won the 2019 Kazakh presidential election, 2019 presidential election that was held on 9 June.


Administrative divisions

Kazakhstan is divided into fourteen Regions of Kazakhstan, regions ( kk, облыстар, ; russian: link=no, области, ). The regions are subdivided into 177 Districts of Kazakhstan, districts ( kz, аудандар, ; russian: link=no, районы, ). The districts are further subdivided into rural districts at the lowest level of administration, which include all rural settlements and villages without an associated municipal government. The cities of
Almaty Almaty (; ; cyrl, Алматы), formerly known as Alma-Ata and Verny (russian: Верный), is the largest city in Kazakhstan, with a population of about 2,000,000 people, about 11% of the country's total population, and more than 2.7 milli ...

Almaty
and
Nur-Sultan Nur-Sultan (; ; kz, Нұр-Сұлтан, Nūr-Sūltan; russian: Нур-Султан), formerly known as Akmolinsk (russian: Акмолинск, Akmolinsk), Tselinograd (russian: Целиногра́д), and Astana (, cyrl, Астана), is t ...
have status "state importance" and do not belong to any region. The city of Baikonur has a special status because it is being leased until 2050 to Russia for the Baikonur cosmodrome. In June 2018 the city of
Shymkent Şymkent (; Шымкент, شىمكەنت; Yañalif: Şьmkent), known until 1993 as Chimkent ( uz, Chimkent, Чимкент, چىمكېنت; Yañalif: Çimkent ()); russian: Чимкент, translit=Čimkent ()), is a city in Kazakhstan ...

Shymkent
became a "city of republican significance". Each region is headed by an Akim, äkim (regional governor) appointed by the president. District ''äkimi'' are appointed by regional ''akim''s. Kazakhstan's government relocated its capital from Almaty, established under the Soviet Union, to Astana on 10 December 1997.


Municipal divisions

Municipalities exist at each level of administrative division in Kazakhstan. Cities of republican, regional, and district significance are designated as urban inhabited localities; all others are designated rural. At the highest level are the cities of Almaty and Nur-Sultan, which are classified as ''cities of republican significance'' on the administrative level equal to that of a region. At the intermediate level are ''cities of regional significance'' on the administrative level equal to that of a district. Cities of these two levels may be divided into city districts. At the lowest level are ''cities of district significance'', and over two-thousand ''villages and rural settlements'' () on the administrative level equal to that of rural districts.


Urban centres


Foreign relations

Kazakhstan is a member of the Commonwealth of Independent States, the Economic Cooperation Organization and the
Shanghai Cooperation Organization russian: Шанхайская организация сотрудничества , image = , caption = , logo = SCO logo.svg , map = SCO MAP 10 July 2015 - Including two new permanent me ...

Shanghai Cooperation Organization
. The nations of Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan established the Eurasian Economic Community in 2000, to revive earlier efforts to harmonise trade tariffs and to create a free trade zone under a customs union. On 1 December 2007, it was announced that Kazakhstan had been chosen to chair the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe for the year 2010. Kazakhstan was elected a member of the UN Human Rights Council for the first time on 12 November 2012. Kazakhstan is also a member of the United Nations, Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council, Turkic Council, and Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). It is an active participant in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, North Atlantic Treaty Organisation Partnership for Peace program. In 1999, Kazakhstan had applied for observer status at the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly. The official response of the Assembly was that because Kazakhstan is partially located in Europe, it could apply for full membership, but that it would not be granted any status whatsoever at the council until its democracy and human rights records improved. Since independence in 1991, Kazakhstan has pursued what is known as the "multivector foreign policy" ( kz, көпвекторлы сыртқы саясат), seeking equally good relations with its two large neighbours, Russia and China, as well as with the United States and the rest of the Western world. Russia currently leases approximately of territory enclosing the Baikonur Cosmodrome space launch site in south central Kazakhstan, where the first man was launched into space as well as Soviet space shuttle Buran (spacecraft), Buran and the well-known space station Mir. On 11 April 2010, presidents Nazarbayev and Barack Obama, Obama met at the Nuclear Security Summit in Washington, D.C., and discussed strengthening the strategic partnership between the United States and Kazakhstan. They pledged to intensify bilateral co-operation to promote nuclear safety and non-proliferation, regional stability in Central Asia, economic prosperity, and universal values. In April 2011, president Obama called president Nazarbayev and discussed many cooperative efforts regarding nuclear security, including securing nuclear material from the BN-350 reactor. They reviewed progress on meeting goals that the two presidents established during their bilateral meeting at the Nuclear Security Summit in 2010. Since 2014 the Kazakhstani government has been bidding for a non-permanent member seat on the UN Security Council for 2017–2018. On 28 June 2016 Kazakhstan was elected as a non-permanent member to serve on the UN Security Council for a two-year term. Kazakhstan actively supports UN peacekeeping missions in Haiti, the Western Sahara, and Côte d'Ivoire. In March 2014, the Ministry of Defense chose 20 Kazakhstani military men as observers for the UN peacekeeping missions. The military personnel, ranking from captain to colonel, had to go through a specialised UN training; they had to be fluent in English and skilled in using specialised military vehicles. In 2014, Kazakhstan gave Ukraine humanitarian aid during the conflict with Russian-backed rebels. In October 2014, Kazakhstan donated $30,000 to the International Committee of the Red Cross's humanitarian effort in Ukraine. In January 2015, to help the humanitarian crisis, Kazakhstan sent $400,000 of aid to Novorossiya (confederation), Ukraine's southeastern regions. President Nazarbayev said of the war in Ukraine, "The fratricidal war has brought true devastation to eastern Ukraine, and it is a common task to stop the war there, strengthen Ukraine’s independence and secure territorial integrity of Ukraine." Experts believe that no matter how the Ukraine crisis develops, Kazakhstan's relations with the European Union will remain normal. It is believed that Nazarbayev's mediation is positively received by both Russia and Ukraine. Kazakhstan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs released a statement on 26 January 2015: "We are firmly convinced that there is no alternative to peace negotiations as a way to resolve the crisis in south-eastern Ukraine." In 2018, Kazakhstan signed the UN treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. The Concept of the Foreign Policy of Kazakhstan for 2020–2023 On 6 March 2020, the Concept of the Foreign Policy of Kazakhstan for 2020–2030 was announced. The document outlines the following main points: – An open, predictable and consistent foreign policy of the country, which is progressive in nature and maintains its endurance by continuing the course of the First President – the country at a new stage of development; – Protection of human rights, development of humanitarian diplomacy and environmental protection; – Promotion of the country's economic interests in the international arena, including the implementation of state policy to attract investment; – Maintaining international peace and security; – Development of regional and multilateral diplomacy, which primarily involves strengthening mutually beneficial ties with key partners – Russia, China, the United States, Central Asian states and the EU countries, as well as through multilateral structures – the United Nations, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, the Commonwealth of Independent States, and others. Kazakhstan's membership of international organisations includes: * Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) * Shanghai Cooperation Organisation * Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council * Individual Partnership Action Plan, with NATO, Ukraine, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Moldova, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro * Turkic Council and the TÜRKSOY community. (The national language, Kazakh language, Kazakh, is related to the other Turkic languages, with which it shares cultural and Turkic peoples, historical ties) * United Nations * Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) * UNESCO, where Kazakhstan is a member of its World Heritage Committee * Nuclear Suppliers Group as a participating government * World Trade Organization * Organization of Islamic Cooperation


Military

Most of Kazakhstan's military was inherited from the Soviet Armed Forces' Turkestan Military District. These units became the core of Kazakhstan's new military. It acquired all the units of the 40th Army (Soviet Union), 40th Army (the former 32nd Army) and part of the 17th Army Corps, including six land-force divisions, storage bases, the 14th and 35th air-landing brigades, two rocket brigades, two artillery regiments, and a large amount of equipment that had been withdrawn from over the Urals after the signing of the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe. Since the late 20th century, the Kazakhstan Army has focused on expanding the number of its armoured units. Since 1990, armoured units have expanded from 500 to 1,613 in 2005. The Kazakh air force is composed mostly of Soviet-era planes, including 41 MiG-29s, 44 MiG-31s, 37 Su-24s and 60 Su-27s. A small naval force is maintained on the Caspian Sea. Kazakhstan sent 29 military engineers to Iraq to assist the History of Iraq (2003–2011), US post-invasion mission in Iraq. During the second Iraq War, Kazakhstani troops dismantled 4 million mines and other explosives, helped provide medical care to more than 5,000 coalition members and civilians, and purified of water. Kazakhstan's National Security Committee of the Republic of Kazakhstan, National Security Committee (UQK) was established on 13 June 1992. It includes the Service of Internal Security, Military Counterintelligence, Border Guard, several Commando units, and Foreign Intelligence (Barlau). The latter is considered as the most important part of KNB. Its director is Nurtai Abykayev. Since 2002, the joint tactical peacekeeping exercise "Steppe Eagle" has been hosted by the Kazakhstan government. "Steppe Eagle" focuses on building coalitions and gives participating nations the opportunity to work together. During the Steppe Eagle exercises, the KAZBAT peacekeeping battalion operates within a multinational force under a unified command within multidisciplinary peacekeeping operations, with NATO and the US Military. In December 2013, Kazakhstan announced it will send officers to support United Nations Peacekeeping forces in Haiti, Western Sahara, Ivory Coast and Liberia.


Human rights

The Economist Intelligence Unit has consistently ranked Kazakhstan as an "authoritarian regime" in its Democracy Index, ranking it 128th out of 167 countries for 2020. Kazakhstan was ranked 157th out of 180 countries in Reporters Without Borders' Press Freedom Index for 2020. Kazakhstan's human rights situation is described as poor by independent observers. In its 2015 report of human rights in the country, Human Rights Watch said that "Kazakhstan heavily restricts freedom of assembly, speech, and religion."Human Rights Watch
World Report 2015: Kazakhstan
, accessed October 2015.
It has also described the government as authoritarian. In 2014, authorities closed newspapers, jailed or fined dozens of people after peaceful but unsanctioned protests, and fined or detained worshipers for practising religion outside state controls. Government critics, including opposition leader Vladimir Kozlov (politician), Vladimir Kozlov, remained in detention after unfair trials. In mid-2014, Kazakhstan adopted new criminal, criminal executive, criminal procedural, and administrative codes, and a new law on trade unions, which contain articles restricting fundamental freedoms and are incompatible with international standards. Torture remains common in places of detention." However, Kazakhstan has achieved significant progress in reducing prison population. The 2016 Human Rights Watch report commented that Kazakhstan "took few meaningful steps to tackle a worsening human rights record in 2015, maintaining a focus on economic development over political reform." Some critics of the government have been COVID-19 misinformation#Efforts to combat misinformation, arrested for allegedly spreading false information about the COVID-19 pandemic in Kazakhstan. Various police reforms, like creation of local police service and zero-tolerance policing, aimed at bringing police closer to local communities have not improved cooperation between police and ordinary citizens. According to a US government report released in 2014, in Kazakhstan:
"The law does not require police to inform detainees that they have the right to an attorney, and police did not do so. Human rights observers alleged that law enforcement officials dissuaded detainees from seeing an attorney, gathered evidence through preliminary questioning before a detainee’s attorney arrived, and in some cases used corrupt defense attorneys to gather evidence. [...]" "The law does not adequately provide for an independent judiciary. The executive branch sharply limited judicial independence. Prosecutors enjoyed a quasi-judicial role and had the authority to suspend court decisions. Corruption was evident at every stage of the judicial process. Although judges were among the most highly paid government employees, lawyers and human rights monitors alleged that judges, prosecutors, and other officials solicited bribes in exchange for favorable rulings in the majority of criminal cases.""Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2013: Kazakhstan"
released by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor. Retrieved 1 November 2015.
Kazakhstan's global rank in the World Justice Project's 2015 Rule of Law Index was 65 out of 102; the country scored well on "Order and Security" (global rank 32/102), and poorly on "Constraints on Government Powers" (global rank 93/102), "Open Government" (85/102) and "Fundamental Rights" (84/102, with a downward trend marking a deterioration in conditions). The ABA Rule of Law Initiative of the American Bar Association has programs to train justice sector professionals in Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan's Supreme Court has taken recent steps to modernise and to increase transparency and oversight over the country's legal system. With funding from the US Agency for International Development, the ABA Rule of Law Initiative began a new program in April 2012 to strengthen the independence and accountability of Kazakhstan's judiciary. In an effort to increase transparency in the criminal justice and court system, and improve human rights, Kazakhstan intends to digitise all investigative, prosecutorial and court records by 2018. Many criminal cases are closed before trial on the basis of reconciliation between the defendant and the victim because they simplify the work of the law-enforcement officers, release the defendant from punishment, and pay little regard to the victim's rights. Homosexuality has been legal in Kazakhstan since 1997; though it is still socially unacceptable in most areas. Discrimination against LGBT rights in Kazakhstan, LGBT people in Kazakhstan is widespread.


Economy

Kazakhstan has the largest and strongest performing economy in Central Asia. Supported by rising oil output and prices, Kazakhstan's economy grew at an average of 8% per year until 2013, before suffering a slowdown in 2014 and 2015. Kazakhstan was the first former Soviet Republic to repay all of its debt to the International Monetary Fund, 7 years ahead of schedule. Kazakhstan has a GDP of $179.332 billion and an annual growth rate of 4.5%. Per capita, Kazakhstan's GDP stands at $9,686. Kazakhstan's increased role in global trade and central positioning on the new Silk Road has given the country the potential to open its markets to billions of people. Kazakhstan joined the World Trade Organisation in 2015. Buoyed by high world crude oil prices, GDP growth figures were between 8.9% and 13.5% from 2000 to 2007 before decreasing to 1–3% in 2008 and 2009, and then rising again from 2010. Other major exports of Kazakhstan include wheat, textiles, and livestock. Kazakhstan is a leading exporter of uranium. Kazakhstan's economy grew by 4.6% in 2014. The country experienced a slowdown in economic growth from 2014 sparked by falling oil prices and the effects of the Ukrainian crisis. The country devalued its currency by 19% in February 2014. Another 22% devaluation occurred in August 2015. Kazakhstan's fiscal situation is stable. The government has continued to follow a conservative fiscal policy by controlling budget spending and accumulating oil revenue savings in its Oil Fund – Samruk-Kazyna. The global financial crisis forced Kazakhstan to increase its public borrowing to support the economy. Public debt increased to 13.4 per cent in 2013 from 8.7 per cent in 2008. Between 2012 and 2013, the government achieved an overall fiscal surplus of 4.5 per cent. Since 2002, Kazakhstan has sought to manage strong inflows of foreign currency without sparking inflation. Inflation has not been under strict control, however, registering 6.6% in 2002, 6.8% in 2003, and 6.4% in 2004. In March 2002, the US Department of Commerce granted Kazakhstan market economy status under Trade Act of 2002, US trade law. This change in status recognised substantive market economy reforms in the areas of currency convertibility, wage rate determination, openness to foreign investment, and government control over the means of production and allocation of resources. Kazakhstan weathered the global financial crisis well, by combining fiscal relaxation with monetary stabilisation. In 2009, the government introduced large-scale support measures such as the recapitalisation of banks and support for the real estate and agricultural sectors, as well as for small and medium enterprises (SMEs). The total value of the stimulus programs amounted to $21 billion, or 20 per cent of the country's GDP, with $4 billion going to stabilise the financial sector. During the global economic crisis, Kazakhstan's economy contracted by 1.2% in 2009, while the annual growth rate subsequently increased to 7.5% and 5% in 2011 and 2012, respectively. In September 2002, Kazakhstan became the first country in the
CIS Cis or cis- may refer to: Places * Cis, Trentino, in Italy * In Poland: ** Cis, Świętokrzyskie Voivodeship, south-central ** Cis, Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship, north Math, science and biology * cis (mathematics) is a mathematical not ...

CIS
to receive an investment grade credit rating from a major international credit rating agency. As of late December 2003, Kazakhstan's gross foreign debt was about $22.9 billion. Total governmental debt was $4.2 billion, 14% of GDP. There has been a reduction in the ratio of debt to GDP. The ratio of total governmental debt to GDP in 2000, was 21.7%; in 2001, it was 17.5%, and in 2002, it was 15.4%. It has risen to 19.2% in 2019. Economic growth, combined with earlier tax reform, tax and financial sector reforms, has dramatically improved government finance from the 1999 budget deficit level of 3.5% of GDP to a deficit of 1.2% of GDP in 2003. Government revenues grew from 19.8% of GDP in 1999 to 22.6% of GDP in 2001, but decreased to 16.2% of GDP in 2003. In 2000, Kazakhstan adopted a new tax code in an effort to consolidate these gains. On 29 November 2003, the Law on Changes to Tax Code which reduced Tax rates around the world, tax rates was adopted. The value added tax fell from 16% to 15%, the social tax, payable by all employers, from 21% to 20%, and the personal income tax, from 30% to 20%. On 7 July 2006, the personal income tax was reduced even further to a flat rate of 5% for personal income in the form of dividends and 10% for other personal income. Kazakhstan furthered its reforms by adopting a new land code on 20 June 2003, and a new customs code on 5 April 2003. Energy is the leading economic sector. Production of crude oil and natural gas condensate from the oil and gas basins of Kazakhstan amounted to in 2012 up from in 2003. Kazakhstan raised oil and gas condensate exports to 44.3 million tons in 2003, 13% higher than in 2002. Gas production in Kazakhstan in 2003, amounted to , up 22.7% compared to 2002, including natural gas production of . Kazakhstan holds about of proven recoverable oil reserves and of gas. Kazakhstan is the 19th largest oil-producing nation in the world. Kazakhstan's oil exports in 2003, were valued at more than $7 billion, representing 65% of overall exports and 24% of the GDP. Major oil and gas fields and recoverable oil reserves are Tengiz Field, Tengiz with ; Karachaganak Field, Karachaganak with and of natural gas; and Kashagan Field, Kashagan with 7 to . Kazakhstan instituted an ambitious pension reform program in 1998. As of 1 January 2012, the pension assets were about $17 billion (KZT 2.5 trillion). There are 11 saving pension funds in the country. The State Accumulating Pension Fund, the only state-owned fund, was Privatization, privatised in 2006. The country's unified financial regulatory agency oversees and regulates the pension funds. The growing demand of the pension funds for quality investment outlets triggered rapid development of the debt Security (finance), securities market. Pension fund capital is being invested almost exclusively in corporate and government Bond (finance), bonds, including government of Kazakhstan Eurobonds. The government of Kazakhstan is studying a project to create a unified national pension fund and transfer all the accounts from the private pension funds into it. The banking system of Kazakhstan is developing rapidly and the system's capitalisation now exceeds $1 billion. The National Bank of Kazakhstan, National Bank has introduced deposit insurance in its campaign to strengthen the banking sector. Due to troubling and non-performing bad assets the bank sector yet is at risk to lose stability. Several major foreign banks have branches in Kazakhstan, including Royal Bank of Scotland, RBS, Citibank, and HSBC. Kookmin and UniCredit have both recently entered the Kazakhstan's financial services market through acquisitions and Equity (finance), stake-building. According to the 2010–11 World Economic Forum in Global Competitiveness Report, Kazakhstan was ranked 72nd in the world in economic competitiveness. One year later, the Global Competitiveness Report ranked Kazakhstan 50th in most competitive markets. In 2012, Kazakhstan attracted $14 billion of foreign direct investment inflows into the country at a 7% growth rate making it the most attractive place to invest out of
CIS Cis or cis- may refer to: Places * Cis, Trentino, in Italy * In Poland: ** Cis, Świętokrzyskie Voivodeship, south-central ** Cis, Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship, north Math, science and biology * cis (mathematics) is a mathematical not ...

CIS
nations. In 2018, $24 billion of FDI was directed into Kazakhstan, a significant increase since 2012. In 2013, ''Aftenposten'' quoted the human-rights activist and lawyer Denis Jivaga as saying that there is an "oil fund in Kazakhstan, but nobody knows how the income is spent". Kazakhstan climbed to 41st on the 2018 Economic Freedom Index published by the Wall Street Journal and The Heritage Foundation. Kazakhstan's economy grew at an average of 8% per year over the past decade on the back of hydrocarbon exports. Despite the lingering uncertainty of the global economy, Kazakhstan's economy has been stable. GDP growth in January–September 2013 was 5.7%, according to preliminary calculations of the Ministry Economy and Budget Planning. From January to September 2014 Kazakhstan's GDP grew at 4%. According to the results from the first half of the year, the current account surplus is $6.6 billion, a figure two times higher than that of the first half of 2013. According to the Chairman of the National Bank of Kazakhstan, Kairat Kelimbetov, the increase was caused by a trade surplus of 17.4 percent, or approximately US$22.6 billion. The overall inflation rate for 2014 is forecasted at 7.4 percent. China is one of the main economic and trade partners of Kazakhstan. In 2013, China launched the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) where Kazakhstan is given an important role as a transit hub.


Foreign trade

Kazakhstan's foreign trade turnover in 2018 was $93.5 billion, which is 19.7% more compared to 2017. Export in 2018 reached $67 billion (+25.7% vs 2017) and import was $32.5 billion (+9.9% vs 2017). Exports accounted for 40.1% of Kazakhstan's gross domestic product (GDP) in 2018. Kazakhstan exports 800 products to 120 countries.


Agriculture

Agriculture in Kazakhstan, Agriculture accounts for approximately 5% of Kazakhstan's GDP. Grain, potatoes, grapes, vegetables, melons and livestock are the most important agricultural commodities. Agricultural land occupies more than . The available agricultural land consists of of arable land and of pasture and hay land. Over 80% of the country's total area is classified as agricultural land, including almost 70% occupied by pasture. Its arable land has the second highest availability per inhabitant (1.5 hectares). Chief livestock products are dairy products, leather, meat, and wool. The country's major crops include wheat, barley, cotton, and rice. Wheat exports, a major source of hard currency, rank among the leading commodities in Kazakhstan's export trade. In 2003 Kazakhstan harvested 17.6 million tons of grain in gross, 2.8% higher compared to 2002. Kazakhstani agriculture still has many environmental problems from mismanagement during its years in the Soviet Union. Some Kazakh wine is produced in the mountains to the east of Almaty. Kazakhstan is thought to be one of the places that the apple originated, particularly the wild ancestor of ''Malus domestica'', ''Malus sieversii''. It has no common name in English, but is known in its native Kazakhstan as ''alma''. The region where it is thought to originate is called ''Almaty'': "rich with apple". This tree is still found wild in the mountains of Central Asia, in southern Kazakhstan,
Kyrgyzstan russian: Киргизская Республика, Kirgizskaya Respublika , image_flag = Flag of Kyrgyzstan.svg , image_coat = Emblem of Kyrgyzstan.svg , symbol_type = Emblem , motto = " ...

Kyrgyzstan
, Tajikistan and Xinjiang in China.


Infrastructure

Railways provide 68% of all cargo and passenger traffic to over 57% of the country. There are in common carrier service, excluding industrial lines. of gauge, electrified, in 2012. Most cities are connected by railroad; high-speed trains go from
Almaty Almaty (; ; cyrl, Алматы), formerly known as Alma-Ata and Verny (russian: Верный), is the largest city in Kazakhstan, with a population of about 2,000,000 people, about 11% of the country's total population, and more than 2.7 milli ...

Almaty
(the southernmost city) to
Petropavl Petropavl ( kk, Петропавл, Petropavl) or Petropavlovsk ( rus, Петропавловск, r=Petropavlovsk), is a city on the Ishim River in northern Kazakhstan Kazakhstan,, * russian: Казахстан, Kazakhstan, officially th ...
(the northernmost city) in about 18 hours. Kazakhstan Temir Zholy (KTZ) is the national railway company. KTZ cooperates with French loco manufacturer Alstom in developing Kazakhstan's railway infrastructure. Alstom has more than 600 staff and two joint ventures with KTZ and its subsidiary in Kazakhstan. In July 2017, Alstom opened its first locomotive repairing center in Kazakhstan. It is the only repairing center in Central Asia and the Caucasus. As the Kazakhstani rail system was designed during the Soviet era, rail routes were designed ignoring intersoviet borders and to the needs of Soviet planning. This has caused anomalies such as the route from Oral, Kazakhstan, Oral to Aktobe now passes briefly through Russian territory. Astana Nurly Zhol railway station, the most modern railway station in Kazakhstan, was opened in Nur-Sultan on 31 May 2017. The opening of the station coincided with the start of the Expo 2017 international exhibition. According to Kazakhstan Railways (KTZ), the 120,000m2 station is expected to be used by 54 trains a day and has capacity to handle 35,000 passengers a day. The strategy of transport development in Kazakhstan until 2015 is to build of new electrified and of existing railway stations. There is a small rapid transit, metro system in
Almaty Almaty (; ; cyrl, Алматы), formerly known as Alma-Ata and Verny (russian: Верный), is the largest city in Kazakhstan, with a population of about 2,000,000 people, about 11% of the country's total population, and more than 2.7 milli ...

Almaty
. A second and third metro lines are planned in the future. The second line would intersect with the first line at Alatau (Almaty Metro), Alatau and Zhibek Zholy (Almaty Metro), Zhibek Zholy stations. In May 2011, the construction of the second phase of the Almaty Metro line 1 began. The general contractor is Almatymetrokurylys. Currently more than of tunnels on the extension project have been excavated. The extension includes five new stations, and will connect the downtown area of Almaty with Kalkaman in the suburbs. Its length will be . The construction is divided into 3 phases. The first phase (the current phase) will be the addition of two stations: Sairan and Moscow, a length of . For more details see: Almaty Metro.There was a tram system of 10 lines which operated from 1937 to 2015. The Astana Metro system is under construction. It's been a long time coming and the project was abandoned at one point in 2013, but an agreement was signed on 7 May 2015 for the project to go ahead. The system was opened between 1959 and 1978, and the tram was a popular form of transport in Oskemen/Ust-Kamenogorsk until its closure in 2018. At its peak it had six routes, but in the end it had four routes in operation. It had a fleet of 50 working tram cars. There is an tram network, which began service in 1965 with, , 20 regular and three special routes. The network has a 60% share of the local public transport market. Its fleet of 115 trams are due to be replaced and in 2012, the city announced plans to purchase 100 new trams.
Pavlodar Pavlodar ( ; ) is a city in northeastern Kazakhstan and the capital of Pavlodar Region. It is located 450 km northeast of the national capital Nur-Sultan and 405 km southeast of the Russian city of Omsk along the Irtysh River. , the ...
There are two tram lines in this city. The Khorgos Gateway dry port is one of Kazakhstan's primary dry ports for handling trans-Eurasian trains, which travel more than between China and Europe. The Khorgos Gateway dry port is surrounded by Khorgos Eastern Gate SEZ that officially commenced operations in December 2016. In 2009 the European Commission blacklisted all Kazakh air carriers with a sole exception of Air Astana. Since then, Kazakhstan has consistently taken measures to modernise and revamp its air safety oversight. In 2016 the European air safety authorities removed all Kazakh airlines from the blacklist and there was "sufficient evidence of compliance" with international standards by Kazakh Airlines and the Civil Aviation Committee.


Mining and metallurgy

Kazakhstan has vast deposits of uranium, precious metals, metals, ores, alloys, ferroalloys and minerals.


Tourism

Kazakhstan is the List of countries and dependencies by area, ninth-largest country by area and the largest landlocked country. Today, tourism is not a major component of the economy. As of 2014, tourism has accounted for 0.3% of Kazakhstan's GDP, but the government has plans to increase it to 3% by 2020. According to the World Economic Forum's Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report 2017, travel and tourism industry GDP in Kazakhstan is $3.08 billion or 1.6 percent of total GDP. The WEF ranks Kazakhstan 80th in its 2019 report. Kazakhstan received 6.5 million tourists in 2016. In 2017, Kazakhstan ranked 43rd in the world in terms of number of tourist arrivals. In 2000 total 1.47 million international tourists visited Kazakhstan, which was increased to 4.81 million in 2012. The Guardian describes tourism in Kazakhstan as, "hugely underdeveloped", despite the attractions of the country's dramatic mountain, lake and desert landscapes. Factors hampering an increase in tourist visits are said to include high prices, "shabby infrastructure", "poor service" and the logistical difficulties of travel in a geographically enormous, underdeveloped country. Even for locals, going for holiday abroad may cost only half the price of taking a holiday in Kazakhstan. The Kazakh Government, long characterised as authoritarian with a history of human rights abuses and suppression of political opposition, has started an initiative named the "Tourism Industry Development Plan 2020". This initiative aims to establish five tourism clusters in Kazakhstan:
Nur-Sultan Nur-Sultan (; ; kz, Нұр-Сұлтан, Nūr-Sūltan; russian: Нур-Султан), formerly known as Akmolinsk (russian: Акмолинск, Akmolinsk), Tselinograd (russian: Целиногра́д), and Astana (, cyrl, Астана), is t ...
city,
Almaty Almaty (; ; cyrl, Алматы), formerly known as Alma-Ata and Verny (russian: Верный), is the largest city in Kazakhstan, with a population of about 2,000,000 people, about 11% of the country's total population, and more than 2.7 milli ...

Almaty
city, East Kazakhstan Region, East Kazakhstan, South Kazakhstan Region, South Kazakhstan, and West Kazakhstan Region, West Kazakhstan Oblasts. It also seeks investment of $4 billion and the creation of 300,000 new jobs in the tourism industry by 2020. Kazakhstan offers a permanent visa-free regime for up to 90 days to citizens of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova,
Kyrgyzstan russian: Киргизская Республика, Kirgizskaya Respublika , image_flag = Flag of Kyrgyzstan.svg , image_coat = Emblem of Kyrgyzstan.svg , symbol_type = Emblem , motto = " ...

Kyrgyzstan
, Mongolia, Russia and Ukraine and for up to 30 days to citizens of Argentina, Brazil, Ecuador, Serbia, South Korea, Tajikistan, Turkey, UAE and
Uzbekistan Uzbekistan (, ; uz, Ozbekiston, ), officially the Republic of Uzbekistan ( uz, Ozbekiston Respublikasi), is a landlocked country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It is often referred to as the land ...

Uzbekistan
. Kazakhstan established a visa-free regime for citizens of 54 countries, including European Union and OECD member states, the US, Japan, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand.


Green economy

Kazakhstan launched the Green Economy Plan in 2013. According to the Green Economy Plan, Kazakhstan committed to meet 50% of its energy needs from alternative and renewable sources by 2050. The government has set the goals that a transition to the Green Economy in Kazakhstan occur by 2050. The green economy is projected to increase GDP by 3% and create more than 500,000 new jobs. The government of Kazakhstan has set prices for energy produced from renewable sources. The price of 1 kilowatt-hour for energy produced by wind power plants was set at 22.68 tenge ($0.12). The price for 1 kilowatt-hour produced by small hydro-power plants is 16.71 tenge ($0.09), and from biogas plants 32.23 tenge ($0.18).


Foreign direct investment

Kazakhstan has attracted $330 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI) from more than 120 countries since its independence. According to the US State Department, Kazakhstan is widely considered to have the best investment climate in the region. In 2002 the country became the first sovereign in the former Soviet Union to receive an investment-grade credit rating from an international credit rating agency. Foreign direct investment (FDI) plays a more significant role in the national economy than in most other former Soviet republics. President Nazarbayev signed into law tax concessions to promote foreign direct investment which include a ten-year exemption from corporation tax, an eight-year exemption from property tax, and a ten-year freeze on most other taxes. Other incentives include a refund on capital investments of up to 30 percent once a production facility is in operation. Sir Suma Chakrabarti, the president of the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), cochaired the Kazakhstan Foreign Investors’ Council with President Nursultan Nazarbayev. In May 2014, the EBRD and government of Kazakhstan created the Partnership for Re-Energizing the Reform Process in Kazakhstan to work with international financial institutions to channel US$2.7 billion provided by the Kazakh government into important sectors of Kazakhstan's economy. The partnership will boost investment and drive forward reforms in the country. As of May 2014, Kazakhstan attracted $190 billion in gross foreign investments since its independence in 1991 and it leads the CIS countries in terms of FDI attracted per capita. One of the factors that attract foreign direct investments is country's political stability. According to the World Bank's report, Kazakhstan is among the top 40% of countries in the world that are considered the most politically stable and free of violence. Kazakhstan also received high ratings in a survey conducted by Ernst & Young in 2014. According to EY's 2014 Kazakhstan Attractiveness Survey, "Investor confidence in Kazakhstan’s potential is also at an all-time high with 47.3% of respondents expecting Kazakhstan to become increasingly attractive over the next three years." The high level of economic, political and social stability and Kazakhstan's competitive corporate tax rate were the primary reasons mentioned for its attractiveness. The OECD 2017 Investment Policy Review noted that "great strides" have been made to open up opportunities to foreign investors and improving policy to attract FDI.


Banking

The banking industry of the Republic of Kazakhstan experienced a pronounced boom and bust cycle over 2000s decade. After several years of rapid expansion in the mid-2000s, the banking industry collapsed in 2008. Several large banking groups, including BTA Bank J.S.C. and Alliance Bank, defaulted soon after. Since then, the industry has shrunk and been restructured, with system-wide loans dropping to 39% of GDP in 2011 from 59% in 2007. Although the Russian and Kazakhstani banking systems share several common features, there are also some fundamental differences. Banks in Kazakhstan have experienced a lengthy period of political stability and economic growth. Together with a rational approach to banking and finance policy, this has helped push Kazakhstan's banking system to a higher level of development. Banking technology and personnel qualifications alike are stronger in Kazakhstan than in Russia. On the negative side, past stability in Kazakhstan arose from the concentration of virtually all political power in the hands of a single individual – the key factor in any assessment of system or country risk. The potential is there for serious disturbances if and when authority passes into new hands.


Bond market

In October 2014, Kazakhstan introduced its first overseas dollar bonds in 14 years. Kazakhstan issued $2.5 billion of 10- and 30-year bonds on 5 October 2014, in what was the nation's first dollar-denominated overseas sale since 2000. Kazakhstan sold $1.5 billion of 10-year dollar bonds to yield 1.5 percentage points above midswaps and $1 billion of 30-year debt at two percentage points over midswaps. The country drew bids for $11 billion.


Housing market

The housing market of Kazakhstan has grown since 2010. In 2013, the total housing area in Kazakhstan amounted to . The housing stock rose over the year to 32.7 million Square (unit), squares, which is nearly an 11% increase. Between 2012 and 2013, the living area per Kazakh citizen rose from . The urban areas concentrate 62.5 percent of the country's housing stock. The UN's recommended standard for housing stands at per person. Kazakhstan will be able to reach the UN standards by 2019 or 2020, if in the medium term the housing growth rate remains within 7 percent.


"Nurly Jol" economic policy

On 11 November 2014, President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev delivered an unexpected state-of-the-nation address in Nur-Sultan at an extended session of the Political Council of the Nur Otan party, introducing a "Nurly Jol" (Bright Path), a new economic policy that implies massive state investment in infrastructure over the next several years. The "Nurly Zhol" policy is accepted as preventive measures needed to help steer the economy towards sustainable growth in the context of the modern global economic and geopolitical challenges, such as the 25%-reduction in the oil price, reciprocal sanctions between the West and Russia over Ukraine, etc. The policy embraces all aspects of economic growth, including finances, industry and social welfare, but especially emphasises investments into the development of infrastructure and construction works. Given recent decreases in revenues from the export of raw materials, funds will be used from Kazakhstan's National Fund.


Economic competitiveness

In the 2020 Doing Business Report by the World Bank, Kazakhstan ranked 25th globally and as the number one best country globally for protecting minority investors’ rights. Kazakhstan achieved its goal of entering the top 50 most competitive countries in 2013, and has maintained its position in the 2014–2015 World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Report that was published at the beginning of September 2014. Kazakhstan is ahead of other states in the
CIS Cis or cis- may refer to: Places * Cis, Trentino, in Italy * In Poland: ** Cis, Świętokrzyskie Voivodeship, south-central ** Cis, Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship, north Math, science and biology * cis (mathematics) is a mathematical not ...

CIS
in almost all of the report's pillars of competitiveness, including institutions, infrastructure, macroeconomic environment, higher education and training, goods market efficiency, labour market development, financial market development, technological readiness, market size, business sophistication and innovation, lagging behind only in the category of health and primary education. The Global Competitiveness Index gives a score from 1 to 7 in each of these pillars, and Kazakhstan earned an overall score of 4.4.


Corruption

In 2005, the World Bank listed Kazakhstan as a corruption hotspot, on a par with Angola, Bolivia, Kenya, Libya and Pakistan. In 2012, Kazakhstan ranked low in an index of the least corrupt countriesOECD Investment Policy Reviews
, P112, OECD, 2012
and the World Economic Forum listed corruption as the biggest problem in doing business in the country. A 2017 OECD report on Kazakhstan indicated that Kazakhstan has reformed laws with regard to the civil service, judiciary, instruments to prevent corruption, access to information, and prosecuting corruption. Kazakhstan has implemented anticorruption reforms that have been recognized by organizations like Transparency International. In 2011 Switzerland confiscated US$48 million in Kazakhstani assets from Swiss bank accounts, as a result of a bribery investigation in the United States. US officials believed the funds represented bribes paid by American officials to Kazakhstani officials in exchange for oil or prospecting rights in Kazakhstan. Proceedings eventually involved US$84 million in the US and another US$60 million in Switzerland The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Kazakh Anti-Corruption Agency signed a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty in February 2015.


Science and technology

Research remains largely concentrated in Kazakhstan's largest city and former capital, Almaty, home to 52% of research personnel. Public research is largely confined to institutes, with universities making only a token contribution. Research institutes receive their funding from national research councils under the umbrella of the Ministry of Education and Science. Their output, however, tends to be disconnected from market needs. In the business sector, few industrial enterprises conduct research themselves. One of the most ambitious targets of the State Programme for Accelerated Industrial and Innovative Development adopted in 2010 is to raise the country's level of expenditure on research and development to 1% of GDP by 2015. By 2013, this ratio stood at 0.18% of GDP. It will be difficult to reach the target as long as economic growth remains strong. Since 2005, the economy has grown faster (by 6% in 2013) than gross domestic expenditure on research and development, which only progressed from PPP$598 million to PPP$714 million between 2005 and 2013. Innovation expenditure more than doubled in Kazakhstan between 2010 and 2011, representing KZT 235 billion (''circa'' US$1.6 billion), or around 1.1% of GDP. Some 11% of the total was spent on research and development. This compares with about 40–70% of innovation expenditure in developed countries. This augmentation was due to a sharp rise in product design and the introduction of new services and production methods over this period, to the detriment of the acquisition of machinery and equipment, which has traditionally made up the bulk of Kazakhstan's innovation expenditure. Training costs represented just 2% of innovation expenditure, a much lower share than in developed countries. Kazakhstan was ranked 77th in the Global Innovation Index in 2020, up from 79th in 2019. In December 2012, President Nursultan Nazarbayev announced the ''Kazakhstan 2050 Strategy'' with the slogan "Strong Business, Strong State." This pragmatic strategy proposes sweeping socio-economic and political reforms to hoist Kazakhstan among the top 30 economies by 2050. In this document, Kazakhstan gives itself 15 years to evolve into a knowledge economy. New sectors are to be created during each five-year plan. The first of these, covering the years 2010–2014, focused on developing industrial capacity in car manufacturing, aircraft engineering and the production of locomotives, passenger and cargo railroad cars. During the second five-year plan to 2019, the goal is to develop export markets for these products. To enable Kazakhstan to enter the world market of geological exploration, the country intends to increase the efficiency of traditional extractive sectors such as oil and gas. It also intends to develop rare earth metals, given their importance for electronics, laser technology, communication and medical equipment. The second five-year plan coincides with the development of the ''Business 2020'' roadmap for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which makes provision for the allocation of grants to SMEs in the regions and for microcredit. The government and the National Chamber of Entrepreneurs also plan to develop an effective mechanism to help start-ups. During subsequent five-year plans to 2050, new industries will be established in fields such as mobile, multi-media, nano- and space technologies, robotics, genetic engineering and alternative energy. Food processing enterprises will be developed with an eye to turning the country into a major regional exporter of beef, dairy and other agricultural products. Low-return, water-intensive crop varieties will be replaced with vegetable, oil and fodder products. As part of the shift to a "green economy" by 2030, 15% of acreage will be cultivated with water-saving technologies. Experimental agrarian and innovational clusters will be established and drought-resistant genetically modified crops developed. The Kazakhstan 2050 Strategy fixes a target of devoting 3% of GDP to research and development by 2050 to allow for the development of new high-tech sectors. The Digital Kazakhstan program was launched in 2018 to boost the country's economic growth through the implementation of digital technologies. Kazakhstan's digitization efforts generated 800 billion tenge (US$1.97 billion) in two years. The program helped create 120,000 jobs and attracted 32.8 billion tenge (US$80.7 million) of investment into the country. 82% of all public services became automated as part of the Digital Kazakhstan program.


Demographics

The US Census Bureau International Database lists the population of Kazakhstan as 18.9 million (May 2019), while United Nations sources such as give an estimate of . Official estimates put the population of Kazakhstan at 18.711 million as of May 2020. In 2013, Kazakhstan's population rose to 17,280,000 with a 1.7% growth rate over the past year according to the Kazakhstan Statistics Agency. The 2009 population estimate is 6.8% higher than the population reported in the last census from January 1999. The decline in population that began after 1989 has been arrested and possibly reversed. Men and women make up 48.3% and 51.7% of the population, respectively.


Ethnic groups

As of 2018, ethnic
Kazakhs The Kazakhs (also spelled Qazaqs; Kazakh: , , , , , ; the English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medi ...

Kazakhs
are 67.5% of the population and ethnic Russians in Kazakhstan are 19.8%. Other groups include Tatars (1.3%), Ukrainians (2.1%), Uzbeks (2.8%), Belarusians, Uyghur people, Uyghurs (1.4%), Azerbaijanis, Dungans, Kalmyks, Chuvashes, Poles in the former Soviet Union, Poles, and Lithuanians. Some minorities such as Ukrainians, Koreans, Volga Germans (1.1%), Chechens, Meskhetian Turks, and Russian political opponents of the regime, had been Population transfer in the Soviet Union, deported to Kazakhstan in the 1930s and 1940s by Stalin. Some of the largest Soviet labour camps (Gulag) existed in the country. Significant Russian immigration was also connected with the Virgin Lands Campaign and Soviet space program during the Nikita Khrushchev, Khrushchev era. In 1989, ethnic Russians were 37.8% of the population and Kazakhs held a majority in only 7 of the 20 regions of the country. Before 1991 there were about 1 million Germans of Kazakhstan, Germans in Kazakhstan, mostly descendants of the Volga Germans deported to Kazakhstan during World War II. After the break-up of the Soviet Union, most of them emigrated to Germany. Most members of the smaller Pontian Greek minority have emigrated to Greece. In the late 1930s thousands of Koreans in the Soviet Union were Deportation of Koreans in the Soviet Union, deported to Central Asia. These people are now known as Koryo-saram. The 1990s were marked by the emigration of many of the country's
Russians , native_name_lang = ru , image = , caption = Wedding ceremony in the national Russian tradition. , population = 134 million , popplace = 117,319,000 , region1 = , pop1 = 7,170,00 ...

Russians
and Volga Germans, a process that began in the 1970s. This has made indigenous Kazakhs the largest ethnic group. Additional factors in the increase in the Kazakhstani population are higher birthrates and Oralman, immigration of ethnic Kazakhs from China, Mongolia, and Russia.


Languages

Kazakhstan is officially a bilingual country. Kazakh language, Kazakh, (part of the Kipchak family of Turkic languages) spoken natively by 64.4% of the population, has the status of "state" language, whereas Russian, which is spoken by most Kazakhs, is declared an "official" language, and is used routinely in business, government, and inter-ethnic communication, although Kazakh is slowly replacing it. The government announced in January 2015 that the Latin alphabet will replace Cyrillic as the writing system for the Kazakh language by 2025.Kazakh language to be converted to Latin alphabet – MCS RK
. Inform.kz (30 January 2015). Retrieved 28 September 2015.
Other minority languages spoken in Kazakhstan include Uzbek language, Uzbek, Ukrainian language, Ukrainian, Uyghur language, Uyghur, Kyrgyz language, Kyrgyz, and Tatar language, Tatar. English, as well as Turkish, have gained popularity among younger people since the collapse of the Soviet Union. Education across Kazakhstan is conducted in either Kazakh, Russian, or both. In Nazarbayev's resignation speech of 2019, he projected that the people of Kazakhstan in the future will speak three languages (Kazakh, Russian and English).


Religion

According to the 2009 Census, 70% of the population is Islam in Kazakhstan, Muslim, 26% Christianity in Kazakhstan, Christian, 0.2% Buddhism in Central Asia, Buddhist, 0.1% Religion in Kazakhstan, other religions (mostly History of the Jews in Kazakhstan, Jewish), and 3% Irreligion, irreligious, while 0.5% chose not to answer. According to its Constitution, Kazakhstan is a secular state. Religious freedoms are guaranteed by Article 39 of Kazakhstan's Constitution. Article 39 states: "Human rights and freedoms shall not be restricted in any way." Article 14 prohibits "discrimination on religious basis" and Article 19 ensures that everyone has the "right to determine and indicate or not to indicate his/her ethnic, party and religious affiliation." The Constitutional Council affirmed these rights in a 2009 declaration, which stated that a proposed law limiting the rights of certain individuals to practice their religion was declared unconstitutional. Islam in Kazakhstan, Islam is the largest religion in Kazakhstan, followed by Eastern Orthodoxy in Kazakhstan, Eastern Orthodox Christianity. After decades of Religion in the Soviet Union, religious suppression by the Soviet Union, the coming of independence witnessed a surge in expression of ethnic identity, partly through religion. The free practice of Religion, religious beliefs and the establishment of full freedom of religion led to an increase of religious activity. Hundreds of mosques, churches, and other religious structures were built in the span of a few years, with the number of religious associations rising from 670 in 1990 to 4,170 today. Some figures show that non-denominational Muslims form the majority, while others indicate that most Muslims in the country are Sunni Islam, Sunnis following the Hanafi school. These include ethnic
Kazakhs The Kazakhs (also spelled Qazaqs; Kazakh: , , , , , ; the English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medi ...

Kazakhs
, who constitute about 60% of the population, as well as ethnic Uzbeks, Uighurs, and Tatars.Kazakhstan – International Religious Freedom Report 2008
U.S. Department of State. Retrieved 7 September 2009.
Less than 1% are part of the Sunni Shafi`i school (primarily Chechens). There are also some Ahmadiyya, Ahmadi Muslims. There are a total of 2,300 mosques,Religious Situation Review in Kazakhstan
Congress of World Religions. Retrieved 7 September 2009.
all of them are affiliated with the "Spiritual Association of Muslims of Kazakhstan", headed by a supreme mufti. Unaffiliated mosques are forcefully closed. Eid al-Adha is recognised as a national holiday. One quarter of the population is Russian Orthodox, including ethnic Russians, Ukrainians and Belarusians. Other Christian groups include Catholic Church in Kazakhstan, Roman Catholics, Greek Catholics, and Protestants. There are a total of 258 Orthodox churches, 93 Catholic churches (9 Greek Catholic), and over 500 Protestant churches and prayer houses. The Russian Orthodox Christmas is recognised as a national holiday in Kazakhstan. Other religious groups include Judaism, the Baháʼí Faith in Kazakhstan, Baháʼí Faith, Hinduism in Kazakhstan, Hinduism, Buddhism in Central Asia, Buddhism, and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. According to the 2009 Census data, there are very few Christians outside the Slavic and Germanic ethnic groups.


Education

Education is universal and mandatory through to the Secondary education, secondary level and the List of countries by literacy rate, adult literacy rate is 99.5%. On average, these statistics are equal to both women and men in Kazakhstan. Education consists of three main phases: primary education (forms 1–4), basic general education (forms 5–9) and senior level education (forms 10–11 or 12) divided into continued general education and vocational education. Vocational Education usually lasts three or four years. (Primary education is preceded by one year of pre-school education.) These levels can be followed in one institution or in different ones (e.g., primary school, then secondary school). Recently, several secondary schools, specialised schools, magnet schools, Gymnasium (school), gymnasiums, Lyceum#Lyceums in today's education, lyceums and linguistic and technical gymnasiums have been founded. Secondary professional education is offered in special professional or technical schools, lyceums or colleges and vocational schools. At present, there are List of universities in Kazakhstan, universities, Academy, academies and institutes, College or university school of music, conservatories, higher schools and higher colleges. There are three main levels: basic higher education that provides the fundamentals of the chosen field of study and leads to the award of the Bachelor's degree; specialised higher education after which students are awarded the Specialist's Diploma; and scientific-pedagogical higher education which leads to the master's degree. Postgraduate education leads to the ''Kandidat Nauk'' ("Candidate of Sciences") and the Doctor of Sciences (PhD). With the adoption of the Laws on Education and on Higher Education, a private sector has been established and several private institutions have been licensed. Over 2,500 students in Kazakhstan have applied for student loans totalling about $9 million. The largest number of student loans come from Almaty, Nur-Sultan and Kyzylorda. The training and skills development programs in Kazakhstan are also supported by international organisations. For example, on 30 March 2015, the World Banks' Group of Executive Directors approved a $100 million loan for the Skills and Job project in Kazakhstan. The project aims to provide relevant training to unemployed, unproductively self-employed, and current employees in need of training.


Culture

Before the Russian colonisation, the Kazakhs had a highly developed culture based on their nomadic pastoral economy.
Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see interjection An interjection is a word or ex ...
was introduced into the region with the arrival of the Arabs in the 8th century. It initially took hold in the southern parts of Turkestan and spread northward. The Samanids helped the religion take root through zealous missionary work. The
Golden Horde The Golden Horde, self-designated as Ulug Ulus, 'Great State' in Turkic, was originally a Mongol The Mongols ( mn, Монголчууд, , ''Mongolchuud'', ; russian: Монголы, ) are an ethnic group to the , and the of Russia. ...
further propagated Islam amongst the tribes in the region during the 14th century. Kazakhstan is home to a large number of prominent contributors to literature, science and philosophy: Abay Qunanbayuli, Mukhtar Auezov, Gabit Musirepov, Kanysh Satpayev, Mukhtar Shakhanov, Saken Seyfullin, Jambyl Jabayev, among many others. Tourism is a rapidly growing industry in Kazakhstan and it is joining the international tourism networking. In 2010, Kazakhstan joined The Region Initiative (TRI) which is a Tri-regional Umbrella of Tourism related organisations. TRI is functioning as a link between three regions: South Asia, Central Asia, and Eastern Europe. Armenia, Bangladesh, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Turkey, and Ukraine are now partners, and Kazakhstan is linked with other South Asian, Eastern European, and Central Asian countries in the tourism market.


Literature

Kazakh literature is defined as "the body of literature, both oral literature, oral and written, produced in the
Kazakh language File:WIKITONGUES- Mereinur speaking Kazakh.webm, A Kazakh speaker, recorded in Kazakhstan Kazakh or Qazaq (Kazakh alphabets, Latin: or , Kazakh alphabets, Cyrillic: or , Kazakh alphabets, Arabic: or , , ), is a Turkic languages, Turkic langua ...
by the
Kazakh people The Kazakhs (also spelled Kazaks, Qazaqs; Kazakh language, Kazakh: , , , ; the English language, English name is transliteration, transliterated from Russian language, Russian; russian: Казахи) are a Turkic peoples, Turkic ethnic group ...
of Central Asia". Kazakh literature expands from the current territory of Kazakhstan, also including the era of
Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic ; kk, Қазақ Кеңестік Социалистік Республикасы, ''Qazaq Keńestik Sosıalıstik Respýblıkasy'') *1991: Republic of Kazakhstan (russian: Республика Казахстан; kk, Қазақстан Респу ...
, Kazakh recognised territory under the
Russian Empire The Russian Empire, . commonly referred to as Imperial Russia, was a historical that extended across and from 1721, succeeding the following the that ended the . The Empire lasted until the was proclaimed by the that took power after the ...
and the
Kazakh Khanate The Kazakh Khanate ( kk, Қазақ Хандығы, , ) was a successor of the Golden Horde The Golden Horde ( tt, , , ), self-designated as Ulug Ulus, 'Great State' in Turkic, was originally a Mongols, Mongol and later Turkicized khan ...

Kazakh Khanate
. There is some overlap with several complementary themes, including the literature of Turkic tribes that inhabited Kazakhstan over the course of the history and literature written by ethnic Kazakhs. According to Chinese written sources of 6th–8th centuries CE, Turkic tribes of Kazakhstan had oral poetry tradition. These came from earlier periods, and were primarily transmitted by bards: professional storytellers and musical performers. Traces of this tradition are shown on Old Turkic alphabet, Orkhon script stone carvings dated 5th–7th centuries CE that describe rule of Kultegin and Bilge, two early Turkic rulers ("kagans"). Amongst the Kazakhs, the bard was a primarily, though not exclusively, male profession. Since at least the 17th century, Kazakh bards could be divided in two main categories: the zhıraws (zhiraus, žyraus), who passed on the works of others, usually not creating and adding their own original work; and the aqyns (akyns), who improvised or created their own poems, stories or songs. There were several types of works, such as didactic ''termes'', elegiac ''tolgaws'', and epic (genre), epic ''zhırs''. Although the origins of such tales are often unknown, most of them were associated with bards of the recent or more distant past, who supposedly created them or passed them on, by the time most Kazakh poetry and prose was first written down in the second half of the 19th century. There are clear stylistic differences between works first created in the 19th century, and works dating from earlier periods but not documented before the 19th century, such as those attributed to such 16th- and 17th-century bards as Er Shoban and Dosmombet Zhıraw (also known as Dospambet Žyrau; he appeared to have been literate, and reportedly visited Constantinople), and even to such 15th-century bards as Shalkiz and Asan Qayghı. Other notable bards include Kaztugan Žyrau, Žiembet Žyrau, Axtamberdy Žyrau, and Buxar Žyrau Kalkamanuly, who was an advisor to
Ablai Khan Wali-ullah Abul-Mansur Khan better known as Abylai Khan ( kk, Абылай (Әбілмансұр) хан, Abylaı (Ábilmansur) han) (May 23, 1711 — May 23, 1781) was a Kazakhs, Kazakh Khan (title), khan of the Middle Kazakh jüz of Kazakhstan K ...
, and whose works have been preserved by Mäšhür Žüsip Köpeev. ''Er Targhın'' and ''Alpamysh, Alpamıs'' are two of the most famous examples of Kazakh literature to be recorded in the 19th century. The ''Book of Dede Korkut'' and Oguz Name (a story of ancient Turkic king Oghuz Khan) are the most well-known Turkic heroic legends. Initially created around 9th century CE, they were passed on through generations in oral form. The legendary tales were recorded by Turkish authors in 14–16th centuries C.E. The preeminent role in the development of modern literary Kazakh belongs to Abai Qunanbaiuly ( kz, Абай Құнанбайұлы, sometimes russified to Abay Kunanbayev, Абай Кунанбаев) (1845–1904), whose writings did much to preserve Kazakh folk culture. Abai's major work is ''The Book of Words'' ( kz, қара сөздері, Qara sözderi), a philosophical treatise and collection of poems where he criticises Russian colonial policies and encourages other Kazakhs to embrace education and literacy. The literary magazines ''Ay Qap'' (published between 1911 and 1915 in Arabic script) and ''Qazaq'' (published between 1913 and 1918) played an important role in the development of the intellectual and political life among early 20th-century Kazakhs.


Music

The modern state of Kazakhstan is home to the Kazakh State Kurmangazy Orchestra of Folk Instruments, the Kazakh State Philharmonic Orchestra, the Kazakh National Opera and the Kazakh State Chamber Orchestra. The folk instrument orchestra was named after Kurmangazy Sagyrbayuly, a famous composer and dombra player from the 19th century. The Musical-Dramatic Training College, founded in 1931, was the first institute of higher education for music. Two years later, the Orchestra of Kazakh Folk Musical Instruments was formed. The Foundation Asyl Mura is archiving and publishing historical recordings of great samples of Kazakh music both traditional and classical. The leading conservatoire is in Almaty, the Qurmanghazy Conservatoire. It currently competes with the national conservatoire in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan's capital. When referring to traditional Kazakh music, authentic folklore must be separated from "folklorism". The latter denotes music executed by academically trained performers who aim at preserving the traditional music for coming generations. As far as can be reconstructed, the music of Kazakhstan from the period before a strong Russian influence consists of instrumental music and vocal music. Instrumental music, with the pieces ("Küy") being performed by soloists. Text is often seen in the background (or "program") for the music, as a lot of Küy titles refer to stories. Vocal music, either as part of a ceremony such as a wedding (mainly performed by women), or as part of a feast. Here we might divide into subgenres: epic singing, containing not only historical facts, but as well the tribe's genealogy, love songs, didactic verses; and as a special form the composition of two or more singers in public (Aitys), of dialogue character and usually unexpectedly frankly in content. The Russian influence on the music life in Kazakhstan can be seen in two spheres: first, the introduction of musical academic institutions such as concert houses with opera stages, conservatories, where the European music was performed and taught, and second, by trying to incorporate Kazakh traditional music into these academic structures. Controlled first by the
Russian Empire The Russian Empire, . commonly referred to as Imperial Russia, was a historical that extended across and from 1721, succeeding the following the that ended the . The Empire lasted until the was proclaimed by the that took power after the ...
and then the
Soviet Union The Soviet Union,. officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. (USSR),. was a that spanned during its existence from 1922 to 1991. It was nominally a of multiple national ; in practice and were highly until its final years. The ...
, Kazakhstan's folk and classical traditions became connected with ethnic Russian music and Western European music. Prior to the 20th century, Kazakh folk music was collected and studied by ethnography, ethnographic research teams including composers, music critics and musicology, musicologists. In the first part of the 19th century, Kazakh music was transcribed in linear musical notation, notation. Some composers of this era set Kazakh folk songs to Russian-style European classical music. The Kazakhs themselves, however, did not write their own music in notation until 1931. Later, as part of the Soviet Union, Kazakh folk culture was encouraged in a sanitised manner designed to avoid political and social unrest. The result was a bland derivative of real Kazakh folk music. In 1920, Aleksandr Zatayevich, a Russian official, created major works of art music with melodies and other elements of Kazakh folk music. Beginning in 1928 and accelerating in the 1930s, he also adapted traditional Kazakh instruments for use in Russian-style ensembles, such as by increasing the number of frets and strings (music), strings. Soon, these styles of modern orchestral playing became the only way for musicians to officially play; Kazakh folk was turned into patriotic, professional and socialist endeavours. The current situation could be described as the effort to rediscover the traditional music as it had been practised before the heavy influence of European musical styles. Contemporary musicians performing among traditional folk music are trained professionals (Rauchan Orazbaeva, Ramazan Stamgazi). Another very challenging aspect arises from the young composers generation, and the rock and jazz musicians, as they aim to incorporate their traditional heritage into the music they learned from the western cultures, thus forming a new stage of "ethnic contemporary classics", respectively ethnic rock or jazz music that sounds distinctly Kazakh. For the classical sector outstanding: Aqtoty Raimkulova, Turan ensemble; for jazz: "Magic of Nomads"; for rock: Roksonaki, Urker, Ulytau, Alda span.


Fine arts

In Kazakhstan, the fine arts in the classical sense has its origins in the second half of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century. It was largely influenced by Russian artists, such as Vasily Vereshchagin and Nikolai Khludov, who internsively travelled in Central Asia. Khludov had a particular influence on the development of the local school of painting, becoming the teacher of many local artists. The most famous of these is Abilkhan Kasteyev, after whom the State Museum of Art of Kazakhstan was renamed in 1984. The Kazakh school of fine arts was fully formed by the 1940s, and flourished in the 1950s. Local painters, graphic artists and sculptors, trained under the unified Soviet system of artist education, began active work, often using national motifs in their art. The painters O. Tansykbaev, J. Shardenov, K. Telzhanov, and S. Aitbaev, graphic artists E. Sidorkina and A. Duzelkhanov, and sculptors H. Nauryzbaeva and E. Sergebaeva are today counted among the key figures of Kazakhstani art.


Cuisine

In the national cuisine, livestock meat, like horse meat and beef can be cooked in a variety of ways and is usually served with a wide assortment of traditional bread products. Refreshments include black tea, often served with milk and dry fruits (such as dry apricots) and nuts. In southern provinces, people often prefer green tea. Traditional milk-derived drinks such as ayran, shubat and kymyz. A traditional Kazakh dinner involves a multitude of appetisers on the table, followed by a soup and one or two main courses such as pilaf and beshbarmak. They also drink their national beverage, which consists of fermented mare's milk.


Sport

Kazakhstan consistently performs in Olympic competitions. It is especially successful in boxing. This has brought some attention to the Central Asian nation and increased world awareness of its athletes. Dmitry Karpov and Olga Rypakova are among the most notable Kazakhstani athletics. Dmitry Karpov is a distinguished decathlete, taking bronze in both the 2004 Summer Olympics, and the 2003 World Championships in Athletics, 2003 and 2007 World Athletics Championships. Olga Rypakova is an athlete, specialised in triple jump (women's), taking silver in the 2011 World Championships in Athletics and Gold in the 2012 Summer Olympics. Kazakhstan's city of
Almaty Almaty (; ; cyrl, Алматы), formerly known as Alma-Ata and Verny (russian: Верный), is the largest city in Kazakhstan, with a population of about 2,000,000 people, about 11% of the country's total population, and more than 2.7 milli ...

Almaty
submitted twice bid for the Winter Olympics: in Almaty bid for the 2014 Winter Olympics, 2014 and again for the 2022 Winter Olympics.
Nur-Sultan Nur-Sultan (; ; kz, Нұр-Сұлтан, Nūr-Sūltan; russian: Нур-Султан), formerly known as Akmolinsk (russian: Акмолинск, Akmolinsk), Tselinograd (russian: Целиногра́д), and Astana (, cyrl, Астана), is t ...
and
Almaty Almaty (; ; cyrl, Алматы), formerly known as Alma-Ata and Verny (russian: Верный), is the largest city in Kazakhstan, with a population of about 2,000,000 people, about 11% of the country's total population, and more than 2.7 milli ...

Almaty
hosted the 2011 Asian Winter Games. Popular sports in Kazakhstan include football, basketball, ice hockey, bandy, and boxing. Association football, Football is the most popular sport in Kazakhstan. The Football Federation of Kazakhstan is the sport's national governing body. The FFK organises the Kazakhstan national football team, men's, Kazakhstan women's national football team, women's, and futsal national teams. Kazakhstan's most famous basketball player was Alzhan Zharmukhamedov, who played for PBC CSKA Moscow, CSKA Moscow and the Soviet Union's national basketball team in the 1960s and 1970s. Throughout his career, he won multiple titles and medals at some of the world's most prestigious basketball competitions, including the Basketball at the Summer Olympics, Summer Olympics, the Basketball World Cup, the EuroBasket (the European Basketball Championship), and the EuroLeague. In 1971 he earned the title Unified Sports Classification System of the USSR, Master of Sports of the USSR, International Class and a year later he was awarded the Order of the Badge of Honor. Kazakhstan's national basketball team was established in 1992, after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Since its foundation, it has been competitive at the continental level. Its greatest accomplishment was at the Basketball at the 2002 Asian Games – Men, 2002 Asian Games, where it defeated the Philippines men's national basketball team, Philippines in its last game to win the bronze medal. At the official Asian Basketball Championship, now called ''FIBA Asia Cup'', the Kazakhs' best finish was 4th place in 2007. The Kazakhstan national bandy team is among the best in the world, and has many times won the bronze medal at the Bandy World Championship, including the 2012 Bandy World Championship, 2012 edition when Kazakhstan hosted the tournament on home ice. In the 2011 Bandy World Championship, 2011 tournament, they were an extra-time in the semi-final from reaching the final for the first time. In 2012, they were even closer when they took it to a penalty shootout. The team won the first Bandy at the 2011 Asian Winter Games, bandy tournament at the Asian Winter Games. During the Soviet time, Dynamo Alma-Ata won the List of Russian bandy champions, Soviet Union national championships in 1977 and 1990 and the European Cup (bandy), European Cup in 1978. Bandy is developed in ten of the country's seventeen administrative divisions (eight of the fourteen regions and two of the three cities which are situated inside of but are not part of regions). Akzhaiyk from Oral, Kazakhstan, Oral, however, is the only professional club. The Kazakhstan men's national ice hockey team, Kazakh national ice hockey team have competed in ice hockey in the 1998 and 2006 Winter Olympics, as well as in the 2006 Men's World Ice Hockey Championships. The Kazakhstan Hockey Championship is held since 1992. Barys Astana is the main domestic Kazakhstani ice hockey professional team, and having played in the Kazakhstani national league until the 2008–09 season, when they were transferred to play in the Kontinental Hockey League. Meanwhile, the Kazzinc-Torpedo and play in the Supreme Hockey League since 1996 and the Saryarka Karagandy since 2012. Top Kazakhstani ice hockey players include Nik Antropov, Ivan Kulshov and Evgeni Nabokov. Kazakhstan national amateur boxing athletes, Kazakh boxers are generally well known in the world. In the last three Olympic Games, their performance was assessed as one of the best and they had more medals than any country in the world, except Cuba and Russia (in all three games). In 1996 and 2004, three Kazakhstani boxers (Vassiliy Jirov in 1996, Bakhtiyar Artayev in 2004 and Serik Sapiyev in 2012) were recognised as the best boxers for their techniques with the Val Barker Trophy, awarded to the best boxer of the tournament. In boxing, Kazakhstan performed well in the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney. Two boxers, Bekzat Sattarkhanov and Yermakhan Ibraimov, earned gold medals. Another two boxers, Bulat Zhumadilov and Mukhtarkhan Dildabekov, earned silver medals. Oleg Maskaev, born in Taraz, Zhambyl, representing Russia, was the World Boxing Council, WBC Heavyweight Champion after knocking out Hasim Rahman on 12 August 2006. The reigning World Boxing Association, WBA, WBC, IBF and International Boxing Organisation, IBO list of middleweight boxing champions, middleweight champion is Kazakh boxer Gennady Golovkin. Natascha Ragosina, representing Russia, but from Karaganda held seven versions of the women's super middleweight title, and two heavyweight titles during her boxing career. She holds the record as the longest-reigning WBA female super middleweight champion, and the longest-reigning WBC female super middleweight champion.


Film

Kazakhstan's film industry is run through the state-owned Kazakhfilm studios based in Almaty. The studio has produced award-winning movies such as ''Myn Bala'', ''Harmony Lessons'', and ''Shal''. Kazakhstan is host of the International Astana Action Film Festival and the Eurasia International Film Festival held annually. Hollywood director Timur Bekmambetov is from Kazakhstan and has become active in bridging Hollywood to the Kazakhstan film industry. Kazakhstan journalist Artur Platonov won Best Script for his documentary "Sold Souls" about Kazakhstan's contribution to the struggle against terrorism at the 2013 Cannes Corporate Media and TV Awards. Serik Aprymov's ''Little Brother'' (''Bauyr'') won at the Central and Eastern Europe Film Festival goEast from the German Federal Foreign Office.


Media

Kazakhstan is ranked 161 out of 180 countries on the World Press Freedom Index, compiled by Reporters Without Borders. A mid-March 2002 court order, with the government as a plaintiff, stated that ''Respublika (Kazakh newspaper), Respublika'' were to stop printing for three months. The order was evaded by printing under other titles, such as ''Not That Respublika''. In early 2014, a court also issued a cease publication order to the small-circulation Assandi-Times newspaper, saying it was a part of the Respublika group. Human Rights Watch said: "this absurd case displays the lengths to which Kazakh authorities are willing to go to bully critical media into silence." With support from the US Department of State's Bureau for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor (DRL), the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative opened a media support centre in Almaty to bolster free expression and journalistic rights in Kazakhstan.


UNESCO World Heritage sites

Kazakhstan has three cultural and two natural sites on the UNESCO World Heritage list. The cultural sites are: * Mausoleum of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi, Mausoleum of Khoja Ahmed Yassaui, added in 2003 * Petroglyphs within the Archaeological Landscape of Tamgaly, added in 2004 * Silk Roads: the Routes Network of Chang'an-Tianshan Corridor, added in 2014 The natural sites are: * Saryarka - Steppe and Lakes of Northern Kazakhstan, added in 2008 * Western Tien Shan, added in 2016.


Public holidays


See also

* Outline of Kazakhstan * Index of Kazakhstan-related articles


Notes


References


Further reading

* * Cameron, Sarah. (2018) ''The Hungry Steppe: Famine, Violence, and the Making of Soviet Kazakhstan'' (Cornell University Press, 2018
online review
* * * * * * * Nahaylo, Bohdan and Victor Swoboda. ''Soviet Disunion: A History of the Nationalities problem in the USSR'' (1990
excerpt
* * * * * Rashid, Ahmed. ''The Resurgence of Central Asia: Islam or Nationalism?'' (2017) * * * Smith, Graham, ed. ''The Nationalities Question in the Soviet Union'' (2nd ed. 1995) *


External links

General
Caspian Pipeline Controversy
from th
Dean Peter Krogh Foreign Affairs Digital Archives

Country Profile
from BBC News.
Kazakhstan
''The World Factbook''. Central Intelligence Agency.
Kazakhstan
information from the United States Department of State
Portals to the World
from the United States Library of Congress.
Kazakhstan
at ''UCB Libraries GovPubs''.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan



Kazakhstan Internet Encyclopedia

Kazakhstan at 20 years of independence, The Economist, 17 December 2011

"Blowing the lid off" – Unrest in Kazakhstan, The Economist, 20 December 2011

The Region Initiative (TRI)
* * *

fro
Kazakhstan Discovery


* [http://www.ifs.du.edu/ifs/frm_CountryProfile.aspx?Country=KZ Key Development Forecasts for Kazakhstan] from International Futures. Government
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan

E-Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan

Government of Kazakhstan


Trade
World Bank Summary Trade Statistics Kazakhstan
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