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Introduction - Kazakhstan:
BackgroundNative Kazakhs, a mix of Turkic and Mongol nomadic tribes who migrated into the region in the 13th century, were rarely united as a single nation. The area was conquered by Russia in the 18th century, and Kazakhstan became a Soviet Republic in 1936. During the 1950s and 1960s agricultural Virgin Lands program, Soviet citizens were encouraged to help cultivate Kazakhstans northern pastures. This influx of immigrants (mostly Russians, but also some other deported nationalities) skewed the ethnic mixture and enabled non-Kazakhs to outnumber natives. Independence in 1991 caused many of these newcomers to emigrate. Kazakhstans economy is larger than those of all the other Central Asian states combined, largely due to the countrys vast natural resources and a recent history of political stability. Current issues include: developing a cohesive national identity; expanding the development of the countrys vast energy resources and exporting them to world markets; achieving a sustainable economic growth; diversifying the economy outside the oil, gas, and mining sectors; enhancing Kazakhstans competitiveness; and strengthening relations with neighboring states and other foreign powers.
Location - Kazakhstan:
LocationCentral Asia, northwest of China; a small portion west of the Ural River in eastern-most Europe
Geographic coordinates48 00 N, 68 00 E
Map referencesAsia
Areatotal: 2,717,300 sq km
land: 2,669,800 sq km
water: 47,500 sq km
Area comparativeslightly less than four times the size of Texas
Land boundariestotal: 12,012 km
border countries: China 1,533 km, Kyrgyzstan 1,051 km, Russia 6,846 km, Turkmenistan 379 km, Uzbekistan 2,203 km
Coastline0 km (landlocked); note - Kazakhstan borders the Aral Sea, now split into two bodies of water (1,070 km), and the Caspian Sea (1,894 km)
Maritime claimsnone (landlocked)
Climatecontinental, cold winters and hot summers, arid and semiarid
Terrainextends from the Volga to the Altai Mountains and from the plains in western Siberia to oases and desert in Central Asia
Elevation extremeslowest point: Vpadina Kaundy -132 m
highest point: Khan Tangiri Shyngy (Pik Khan-Tengri) 6,995 m
Natural resourcesmajor deposits of petroleum, natural gas, coal, iron ore, manganese, chrome ore, nickel, cobalt, copper, molybdenum, lead, zinc, bauxite, gold, uranium
Land usearable land: 8.28%
permanent crops: 0.05%
other: 91.67% (2005)
Irrigated land35,560 sq km (2003)
Natural hazardsearthquakes in the south, mudslides around Almaty
Environment current issuesradioactive or toxic chemical sites associated with former defense industries and test ranges scattered throughout the country pose health risks for humans and animals; industrial pollution is severe in some cities; because the two main rivers which flowed into the Aral Sea have been diverted for irrigation, it is drying up and leaving behind a harmful layer of chemical pesticides and natural salts; these substances are then picked up by the wind and blown into noxious dust storms; pollution in the Caspian Sea; soil pollution from overuse of agricultural chemicals and salination from poor infrastructure and wasteful irrigation practices
Environment international agreementsparty to: Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol
Geography notelandlocked; Russia leases approximately 6,000 sq km of territory enclosing the Baykonur Cosmodrome; in January 2004, Kazakhstan and Russia extended the lease to 2050
People - Kazakhstan:
Population15,284,929 (July 2007 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 22.5% (male 1,758,782/female 1,683,249)
15-64 years: 69.2% (male 5,169,314/female 5,407,661)
65 years and over: 8.3% (male 446,549/female 819,374) (2007 est.)
Median agetotal: 29.1 years
male: 27.5 years
female: 30.8 years (2007 est.)
Population growth rate0.352% (2007 est.)
Birth rate16.23 births/1,000 population (2007 est.)
Death rate9.4 deaths/1,000 population (2007 est.)
Net migration rate-3.32 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2007 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.045 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.956 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.545 male(s)/female
total population: 0.932 male(s)/female (2007 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 27.41 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 31.94 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 22.62 deaths/1,000 live births (2007 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 67.22 years
male: 61.9 years
female: 72.84 years (2007 est.)
Total fertility rate1.89 children born/woman (2007 est.)
Hiv aids adult prevalence rate0.2% (2001 est.)
Hiv aids people living with hiv aids16,500 (2001 est.)
Hiv aids deathsless than 200 (2003 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Kazakhstani(s)
adjective: Kazakhstani
Ethnic groupsKazakh (Qazaq) 53.4%, Russian 30%, Ukrainian 3.7%, Uzbek 2.5%, German 2.4%, Tatar 1.7%, Uygur 1.4%, other 4.9% (1999 census)
ReligionsMuslim 47%, Russian Orthodox 44%, Protestant 2%, other 7%
LanguagesKazakh (Qazaq, state language) 64.4%, Russian (official, used in everyday business, designated the language of interethnic communication) 95% (2001 est.)
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 99.5%
male: 99.8%
female: 99.3% (1999 est.)
Government - Kazakhstan:
Country nameconventional long form: Republic of Kazakhstan
conventional short form: Kazakhstan
local long form: Qazaqstan Respublikasy
local short form: Qazaqstan
former: Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic
Government typerepublic; authoritarian presidential rule, with little power outside the executive branch
Capitalname: Astana
geographic coordinates: 51 10 N, 71 25 E
time difference: UTC+6 (11 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
note: Kazakhstan is divided into three time zones
Administrative divisions14 provinces (oblystar, singular - oblys) and 3 cities* (qala, singular - qalasy); Almaty Oblysy, Almaty Qalasy*, Aqmola Oblysy (Astana), Aqtobe Oblysy, Astana Qalasy*, Atyrau Oblysy, Batys Qazaqstan Oblysy (Oral), Bayqongyr Qalasy*, Mangghystau Oblysy (Aqtau), Ongtustik Qazaqstan Oblysy (Shymkent), Pavlodar Oblysy, Qaraghandy Oblysy, Qostanay Oblysy, Qyzylorda Oblysy, Shyghys Qazaqstan Oblysy (Oskemen), Soltustik Qazaqstan Oblysy (Petropavlovsk), Zhambyl Oblysy (Taraz)
note: administrative divisions have the same names as their administrative centers (exceptions have the administrative center name following in parentheses); in 1995, the Governments of Kazakhstan and Russia entered into an agreement whereby Russia would lease for a period of 20 years an area of 6,000 sq km enclosing the Baykonur space launch facilities and the city of Bayqongyr (Baykonur, formerly Leninsk); in 2004, a new agreement extended the lease to 2050
Independence16 December 1991 (from the Soviet Union)
National holidayIndependence Day, 16 December (1991)
Constitutionfirst post-independence constitution adopted 28 January 1993; new constitution adopted by national referendum 30 August 1995
Legal systembased on Islamic law and Roman law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Suffrage18 years of age; universal
Executive branchchief of state: President Nursultan A. NAZARBAYEV (chairman of the Supreme Soviet from 22 February 1990, elected president 1 December 1991)
head of government: Prime Minister Karim MASIMOV (since 10 January 2007); Deputy Prime Minister Umirzak SHUKEYEV (since 27 August 2007)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president
elections: president elected by popular vote for a seven-year term (no term limits); election last held 4 December 2005 (next to be held in 2012); prime minister and first deputy prime minister appointed by the president
election results: Nursultan A. NAZARBAYEV reelected president; percent of vote - Nursultan A. NAZARBAYEV 91.1%, Zharmakhan A. TUYAKBAI 6.6%, Alikhan M. BAIMENOV 1.6%
note: President NAZARBAYEV arranged a referendum in 1995 that extended his term of office and expanded his presidential powers: only he can initiate constitutional amendments, appoint and dismiss the government, dissolve Parliament, call referenda at his discretion, and appoint administrative heads of regions and cities
Legislative branchbicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (47 seats; 7 members are appointed by the president; other members are elected by local government bodies, 2 from each of the 14 oblasts, the capital of Astana, and the city of Almaty; to serve six-year terms) and the Mazhilis (107 seats; 9 out of the 107 Mazhilis members are elected from the Assembly of the People of Kazakhstan which represents the countrys ethnic minorities; members are popularly elected to serve five-year terms)
elections: Senate - (indirect) last held December 2005; next to be held in 2011; Mazhilis - last held 18 August 2007 (next to be held in 2012)
election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA; candidates nominated by local councils; Mazhilis - percent of vote by party - Nur-Otan 88.1%, NSDP 4.6%, Ak Zhol 3.3%, Auyl 1.6%, Communist Peoples Party 1.3%, Patriots Party .8% Ruhaniyat .4%; seats by party - Nur-Otan 98; note - parties must achieve a threshold of 7% of the electorate to qualify for seats in the Mazhilis
Judicial branchSupreme Court (44 members); Constitutional Council (7 members)
Political parties and leadersAdilet (Justice) [Maksut NARIKBAYEV, Zeynulla ALSHIMBAYEV, Bakhytbek AKHMETZHAN, Yerkin ONGARBAYEV, Tolegan SYDYKOV] (formerly Democratic Party of Kazakhstan); Agrarian and Industrial Union of Workers Block or AIST (Agrarian Party and Civic Party); Ak Zhol Party (Bright Path) [Alikhan BAIMENOV]; Auyl (Village) [Gani KALIYEV]; Communist Party of Kazakhstan or KPK [Serikbolsyn ABDILDIN]; Communist Peoples Party of Kazakhstan [Vladislav KOSAREV]; National Social Democratic Party (NSDP)[Zharmakhan TUYAKBAY]; Nur-Otan [Bakhytzhan ZHUMAGULOV] (the Agrarian, Asar, and Civic parties merged with Otan); Patriots Party [Gani KASYMOV]; Rukhaniyat (Spirituality) [Altynshash ZHAGANOVA]
Political pressure groups and leadersAdil-Soz [Tamara KALEYEVA]; Almaty Helsinki Group [Ninel FOKINA]; Confederation of Free Trade Unions [Sergei BELKIN]; For a Just Kazakhstan [Bolat ABILOV]; For Fair Elections [Yevgeniy ZHOVTIS, Sabit ZHUSUPOV, Sergey DUVANOV, Ibrash NUSUPBAYEV]; Kazakhstan International Bureau on Human Rights [Yevgeniy ZHOVTIS, executive director]; Pan-National Social Democratic Party of Kazakhstan [Zharmakhan TUYAKBAI]; Pensioners Movement or Pokoleniye [Irina SAVOSTINA, chairwoman]; Republican Network of International Monitors [Dos KUSHIM]; Transparency International [Sergei ZLOTNIKOV]
International organization participationAsDB, CIS, CSTO, EAEC, EAPC, EBRD, ECO, FAO, GCTU, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, MIGA, NAM (observer), NSG, OAS (observer), OIC, OPCW, OSCE, PFP, SCO, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO (observer)
Diplomatic representation in the uschief of mission: Ambassador Yerlan IDRISOV
chancery: 1401 16th Street NW, Washington, DC 20036
telephone: [1] (202) 232-5488
FAX: [1] (202) 232-5845
consulate(s): New York
Diplomatic representation from the uschief of mission: Ambassador John M. ORDWAY
embassy: Ak Bulak 4, Str. 23-22, Building #3, Astana 010010
mailing address: use embassy street address
telephone: [7] (3172) 70-21-00
FAX: [7] (3172) 34-08-90
Flag descriptionsky blue background representing the endless sky and a gold sun with 32 rays soaring above a golden steppe eagle in the center; on the hoist side is a national ornamentation in gold
Economy - Kazakhstan:
Economy overviewKazakhstan, the largest of the former Soviet republics in territory, excluding Russia, possesses enormous fossil fuel reserves and plentiful supplies of other minerals and metals. It also has a large agricultural sector featuring livestock and grain. Kazakhstans industrial sector rests on the extraction and processing of these natural resources and also on a growing machine-building sector specializing in construction equipment, tractors, agricultural machinery, and some defense items. The breakup of the USSR in December 1991 and the collapse in demand for Kazakhstans traditional heavy industry products resulted in a short-term contraction of the economy, with the steepest annual decline occurring in 1994. In 1995-97, the pace of the government program of economic reform and privatization quickened, resulting in a substantial shifting of assets into the private sector. Kazakhstan enjoyed double-digit growth in 2000-01 - 8% or more per year in 2002-06 - thanks largely to its booming energy sector, but also to economic reform, good harvests, and foreign investment. The opening of the Caspian Consortium pipeline in 2001, from western Kazakhstans Tengiz oilfield to the Black Sea, substantially raised export capacity. Kazakhstan in 2006 completed the Atasu-Alashankou portion of an oil pipeline to China that is planned to extend from the countrys Caspian coast eastward to the Chinese border in future construction. The country has embarked upon an industrial policy designed to diversify the economy away from overdependence on the oil sector by developing light industry. The policy aims to reduce the influence of foreign investment and foreign personnel. The government has engaged in several disputes with foreign oil companies over the terms of production agreements; tensions continue. Upward pressure on the local currency continued in 2006 due to massive oil-related foreign-exchange inflows. Aided by strong growth and foreign exchange earnings, Kazakhstan aspires to become a regional financial center and has created a banking system comparable to those in Central Europe.
Gdp purchasing power parity $143.1 billion (2006 est.)
Gdp official exchange rate $53.6 billion (2006 est.)
Gdp real growth rate10.6% (2006 est.)
Gdp per capita ppp $9,400 (2006 est.)
Gdp composition by sectoragriculture: 6.3%
industry: 41.1%
services: 52.7% (2006 est.)
Labor force7.834 million (2006 est.)
Labor force by occupationagriculture: 20%
industry: 30%
services: 50% (2002 est.)
Unemployment rate7.4% (2006 est.)
Population below poverty line19% (2004 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 3.3%
highest 10%: 26.5% (2004 est.)
Distribution of family income gini index31.5 (2003)
Inflation rate consumer prices 8.6% (2006 est.)
Investment gross fixed 27% of GDP (2006 est.)
Budgetrevenues: $18.48 billion
expenditures: $18.09 billion; including capital expenditures of $NA (2006 est.)
Public debt11% of GDP (2006 est.)
Agriculture productsgrain (mostly spring wheat), cotton; livestock
Industriesoil, coal, iron ore, manganese, chromite, lead, zinc, copper, titanium, bauxite, gold, silver, phosphates, sulfur, iron and steel; tractors and other agricultural machinery, electric motors, construction materials
Industrial production growth rate7.7% (2006 est.)
Electricity production66.5 billion kWh (2006 est.)
Electricity consumption59.2 billion kWh (2006 est.)
Electricity exports4.9 billion kWh (2004)
Electricity imports4.37 billion kWh (2004)
Oil production1.3 million bbl/day (2005 est.)
Oil consumption222,000 bbl/day (2005 est.)
Oil exports1 million bbl/day (2005 est.)
Oil imports113,600 bbl/day (2004)
Oil proved reserves9 billion bbl (1 January 2005)
Natural gas production20.49 billion cu m (2004 est.)
Natural gas consumption15.75 billion cu m (2004 est.)
Natural gas exports7.01 billion cu m (2004 est.)
Natural gas imports2.27 billion cu m (2004 est.)
Natural gas proved reserves1.841 trillion cu m (1 January 2005 est.)
Current account balance$133 million (2006 est.)
Exports$35.55 billion f.o.b. (2006 est.)
Exports commoditiesoil and oil products 58%, ferrous metals 24%, chemicals 5%, machinery 3%, grain, wool, meat, coal (2001)
Exports partnersGermany 12.4%, Russia 11.6%, China 10.9%, Italy 10.5%, France 7.4%, Romania 4.9% (2006)
Imports$22 billion f.o.b. (2006 est.)
Imports commoditiesmachinery and equipment 41%, metal products 28%, foodstuffs 8% (2001)
Imports partnersRussia 36.8%, China 19.5%, Germany 7.4% (2006)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$15.26 billion (2006 est.)
Debt external$53.89 billion (30 June 2006 est.)
Economic aid recipient$74.2 million (FY04)
Currency code tenge (KZT)
Exchange ratestenge per US dollar - 126.09 (2006), 132.88 (2005), 136.04 (2004), 149.58 (2003), 153.28 (2002)
Communications - Kazakhstan:
Fiscal yearcalendar year
Telephones main lines in use2.928 million (2006)
Telephones mobile cellular7.83 million (2006)
Telephone systemgeneral assessment: service is poor; equipment antiquated
domestic: intercity by landline and microwave radio relay; mobile cellular systems are available in most of Kazakhstan
international: country code - 7; international traffic with other former Soviet republics and China carried by landline and microwave radio relay and with other countries by satellite and by the Trans-Asia-Europe (TAE) fiber-optic cable; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat
Radio broadcast stationsAM 60, FM 17, shortwave 9 (1998)
Television broadcast stations12 (plus 9 repeaters) (1998)
Internet country code.kz
Internet hosts21,187 (2006)
Internet users1.247 million (2006)
Transportation - Kazakhstan:
Airports150 (2006)
Airports with paved runwaystotal: 67
over 3,047 m: 9
2,438 to 3,047 m: 27
1,524 to 2,437 m: 17
914 to 1,523 m: 4
under 914 m: 10 (2006)
Airports with unpaved runwaystotal: 83
over 3,047 m: 5
2,438 to 3,047 m: 6
1,524 to 2,437 m: 9
914 to 1,523 m: 10
under 914 m: 53 (2006)
Heliports4 (2006)
Pipelinescondensate 658 km; gas 11,019 km; oil 10,338 km; refined products 1,095 km (2006)
Railwaystotal: 13,700 km
broad gauge: 13,700 km 1.520-m gauge (3,700 km electrified) (2006)
Roadwaystotal: 90,018 km
paved: 84,104 km
unpaved: 5,914 km (2004)
Waterways4,000 km (on the Ertis ((Irtysh)) River (80%) and Syr Darya ((Syrdariya)) River) (2006)
Merchant marinetotal: 6 ships (1000 GRT or over) 27,173 GRT/43,475 DWT
by type: cargo 2, petroleum tanker 3, refrigerated cargo 1
foreign-owned: 2 (Oman 2) (2006)
Ports and terminalsAqtau (Shevchenko), Atyrau (Guryev), Oskemen (Ust-Kamenogorsk), Pavlodar, Semey (Semipalatinsk)
Military - Kazakhstan:
Military branchesGround Forces, Naval Force, Air and Air Defense Forces, Republican Guard
Military service age and obligation18 years of age for compulsory military service; conscript service obligation - 2 years; minimum age for volunteers NA (2004)
Manpower available for military servicemales age 18-49: 3,758,255
females age 18-49: 3,822,845 (2005 est.)
Manpower fit for military servicemales age 18-49: 2,473,529
females age 18-49: 3,168,048 (2005 est.)
Manpower reaching military service age annuallymales age 18-49: 173,129
females age 18-49: 168,697 (2005 est.)
Refugees and internally displaced personsrefugees (country of origin): 5,000 (Russia) (2006)
Military expenditures percent of gdp0.9% (Ministry of Defense expenditures) (FY02)
Disputes internationalKyrgyzstan has yet to ratify the 2001 boundary delimitation with Kazakhstan; field demarcation of the boundaries with Turkmenistan commenced in 2005, and with Uzbekistan in 2004; demarcation is scheduled to get underway with Russia in 2007; demarcation with China was completed in 2002; creation of a seabed boundary with Turkmenistan in the Caspian Sea remains under discussion; equidistant seabed treaties have been ratified with Azerbaijan and Russia in the Caspian Sea, but no resolution has been made on dividing the water column among any of the littoral states
This page was last updated on 16 September, 2007
Source: CIA >>>

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