REPUBLIC OF KAZAKHSTAN
The Republic of Kazakhstan is a unitary state with a presidential form of government. According to the Constitution, the Republic of Kazakhstan proclaims itself as a democratic, secular, legal and social state whose highest values are a person, his life, rights, and freedoms.
Kazakhstan gained independence on December 16, 1991. The city of Nur-Sultan (until 23.03.2019 – Astana) is the capital city of the country. Kazakh language is the official language, Russian is the language of interethnic communication. The currency unit used in Kazakhstan is tenge.
The President of the Republic of Kazakhstan is the Head of the State, its highest political official, who determines the main directions of the domestic and foreign policy of the country and represents Kazakhstan within the country and on the international arena. The President is a symbol and guarantor of the national unity and the state power, inviolability of the Constitution, as well as the rights and freedoms of an individual and a citizen.
The Government implements executive powers, heads the system of executive bodies and supervises their activities.
The Parliament of the Republic of Kazakhstan performs legislative functions and consists of two Chambers acting on a permanent basis - the Senate and the Mazhilis. The Senate is formed by the MP’s, two of whom represent each region of the country, cities of national significance and the capital. The President appoints fifteen Senate MP’s taking into account the need to ensure equal representation of national and cultural and other significant interests of the society.
The Mazhilis consists of one hundred and seven MP’s, nine of whom are elected by the Assembly of People of Kazakhstan. The term of powers of Senate MP’s is six years; the Mazhilis MP’s are elected for five years. Three parties are currently represented in the Mazhilis, including “Nur Otan”, “Ak zhol” and Communist People’s Party of Kazakhstan.
The administrative and territorial structure of the country includes 14 regions and 3 cities of national significance.
The population of Kazakhstan exceeds 18 million people. According to 2009 national census, the ethnic structure of the society is as follows: Kazakhs - 63.07%, Russians – 23.7%, Uzbeks - 2.85%, Ukrainians - 2.08%, Uighurs - 1.4%, Tatars - 1.28%, Germans - 1.11%, others - 4.51%.
With the area of 2,724.9 mln. square kilometers, the country has the ninth largest territory in the world. The country shares border with Russia in the north and the west - 7,591 km (the longest continuous land border in the world), with China in the east - 1,783 km, with Kyrgyzstan - 1,242 km, with Uzbekistan - 2,351 km, and Turkmenistan - 426 km - in the south. The total length of the land border of Kazakhstan with other states - 13,200 km.
Kazakhstan is the world’s largest landlocked country. Most part of the country is desert - 44% and semi-desert - 14%. Steppes make up 26% of Kazakhstan’s territory, forests - only 5.5%. There are 8,5 thous. rivers in the country. The territory includes the Northeastern part of the Caspian Sea. The Aral Sea is divided between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. There are 48 thous. large and small lakes in Kazakhstan. The largest of them are Balkhash, Zaisan and Alakol. The country’s continental climate is determined by its remoteness from oceans.
The mineral resources base of the country includes more than 5 thousand deposits, the estimated cost of which is evaluated at tens of trillions of dollars. The country is ranked the first in explored reserves of zinc, tungsten and barite, the second – in silver, lead and chromites, the third – in copper and fluorite, the fourth - in molybdenum, and the sixth - in gold.
Kazakhstan also has significant oil and gas resources (ranks the 9th in the world in proven oil reserves), which are located in the western regions. In addition, the republic has the 2nd and the 8th world’s largest uranium and coal deposits, respectively.
Kazakhstan is among the world’s top ten exporters of grain and is one of flour export leaders. 70% of arable land in the north of the country is occupied by grain and industrial crops - wheat, barley, millet. Rice, cotton, and tobacco are cultivated in the south of the country. Kazakhstan is also famous for its gardens, vineyards and melons. Livestock farming is another leading area of agriculture.
The main export commodities include mining, fuel and energy, metallurgical and chemical products, as well as grain products. Russia, China, Europe and the CIS states are the main trade partners of the republic.
To diversify the economy, the country has successfully implemented the Program of Accelerated Industrial and Innovative development, stipulating the modernization of old enterprises and opening of the new ones.
Kazakhstan is implementing a large-scale project “New Silk Road” that will revive the country’s historical role as the major bridge between the two continents and transform the country into the largest business and transit hub in the region - a bridge between Europe and Asia. By 2020, the volume of transit traffic through Kazakhstan is expected to increase almost twice.
In 2014, the Head of the State announced the program of large-scale infrastructure development “Nurly Zhol”, designed to connect the transit routes in different regions of Kazakhstan, modernize logistics, social and industrial infrastructure.
Kazakhstan has started to implement the Plan of the Nation “100 concrete steps” that involves radical transformations aimed to implement Five institutional reforms: the formation of a professional state apparatus, ensuring the rule of law, industrialization and economic growth, identity and unity and the formation of an accountable government.
At the same time, a large-scale social modernization program is being fulfilled in the country implying the construction of new schools, vocational colleges and universities, opening of modern medical clinics and hospitals, improvement of social support system.
Currently, the representatives of 130 ethnic groups live in the republic, and the Assembly of People of Kazakhstan, which is the advisory body on interethnic relations harmonization, is successfully functioning. The Congresses of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions are held regularly in Nur-Sultan.
As a leader in Central Asia, the country is making a significant contribution to strengthen stability in the region. The country has made great strides on the global stage, which is proved by the presidency of Kazakhstan at the OSCE Summit held in Astana in December 2010. Another significant initiative was the launch of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) - the Asian analogue of the OSCE. The Kazakhstan’s activity when chairing the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), the leading organization of the Islamic world, got positive feedback from the international community. The country is a well-established leader in the global anti-nuclear movement.
Kazakhstan is a member state of the Eurasian Economic Union.
The prosperity of Kazakhstan’s society is based on the stable growth in all sectors of its economy, international recognition and political stability. Kazakhstan is a forward-looking country, which retains its culture, traditions and successfully implements its huge creative potential in the modern dynamic world.