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Ethnic 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 Kazakhstan's northern pastures. This influx of immigrants (mostly Russians, but also some other deported nationalities) skewed the ethnic mixture and enabled non-ethnic Kazakhs to outnumber natives. Independence in 1991 drove many of these newcomers to emigrate. Kazakhstan's economy is larger than those of all the other Central Asian states largely due to the country's vast natural resources. Current issues include: developing a cohesive national identity; expanding the development of the country's vast energy resources and exporting them to world markets; diversifying the economy outside the oil, gas, and mining sectors; enhancing Kazakhstan's economic competitiveness; developing a multiparty parliament and advancing political and social reform; and strengthening relations with neighboring states and other foreign powers.


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Economy

Economy - overview
Kazakhstan, geographically the largest of the former Soviet republics, excluding Russia, possesses enormous fossil fuel reserves and plentiful supplies of other minerals and metals, such as uranium, copper, and zinc. It also has a large agricultural sector featuring livestock and grain. In 2002 Kazakhstan became the first country in the former Soviet Union to receive an investment-grade credit rating. Kazakhstan's economy has largely recovered from the global financial crisis of 2008, and GDP increased 7% year-on-year in 2011. Extractive industries have been and will continue to be the engine of this growth. Landlocked, with restricted access to the high seas, Kazakhstan relies on its neighbors to export its products, especially oil and grain. Although its Caspian Sea ports, pipelines, and rail lines carrying oil have been upgraded, civil aviation and roadways have been neglected. Telecoms are improving, but require considerable investment, as does the information technology base. Supply and distribution of electricity can be erratic because of regional dependencies. At the end of 2007, global financial markets froze up and the loss of capital inflows to Kazakhstani banks caused a credit crunch. The subsequent and sharp fall of oil and commodity prices in 2008 aggravated the economic situation, and Kazakhstan plunged into recession. While the global financial crisis took a significant toll on Kazakhstan's economy, it has rebounded well. In response to the crisis, Kazakhstan's government devalued the tenge (Kazakhstan's currency) to stabilize market pressures and injected around $10 billion in economic stimulus. Rising commodity prices have helped revive Kazakhstan's economy, which registered roughly 7% growth in 2010-11. Despite solid macroeconomic indicators, the government realizes that its economy suffers from an overreliance on oil and extractive industries, the so-called "Dutch disease." In response, Kazakhstan has embarked on an ambitious diversification program, aimed at developing targeted sectors like transport, pharmaceuticals, telecommunications, petrochemicals and food processing. In 2010 Kazakhstan joined the Belarus-Kazakhstan-Russia Customs Union in an effort to boost foreign investment and improve trade relationships. The government expects to join the World Trade Organization in 2012, which should also help to develop the manufacturing and service sector base.

Gdp (purchasing power parity) World Ranking: 53
$219.6 billion (2011 est.)
$204.2 billion (2010 est.)
$190.4 billion (2009 est.)
Note Data are in 2011 US dollars

Gdp (official exchange rate)
$178.3 billion (2011 est.)

Gdp - real growth rate World Ranking: 23
7.5% (2011 est.)
7.3% (2010 est.)
1.2% (2009 est.)

Gdp - per capita (ppp) World Ranking: 93
$13,200 (2011 est.)
$12,400 (2010 est.)
$11,800 (2009 est.)
Note Data are in 2011 US dollars

Gdp - composition by sector
Agriculture 5.2%
Industry 37.9%
Services 56.9% (2011 est.)

Labor force World Ranking: 55
8.777 million (2011 est.)

Labor force - by occupation
Agriculture 25.9%
Industry 11.9%
Services 62.2% (2010 est.)

Unemployment rate World Ranking: 53
5.4% (2011 est.)
5.8% (2010 est.)

Population below poverty line
8.2% (2009 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share
Lowest 10% 4%
Highest 10% 23.8% (2009 est.)

Distribution of family income - gini index World Ranking: 127
26.7 (2009)
31.5 (2003)

Investment (gross fixed) World Ranking: 114
18.3% of GDP (2011 est.)

Budget
Revenues $36.64 billion
Expenditures $40.52 billion (2011 est.)

Taxes and other revenues World Ranking: 160
20.5% of GDP (2011 est.)

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-) World Ranking: 80
-2.2% of GDP (2011 est.)

Public debt World Ranking: 130
12.4% of GDP (2011 est.)
15.5% of GDP (2010 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices) World Ranking: 175
8.4% (2011 est.)
7.1% (2010 est.)

Central bank discount rate World Ranking: 90
7.5% (31 December 2011 est.)
4.25% (31 December 2010 est.)

Commercial bank prime lending rate World Ranking: 116
7.1% (31 December 2011 est.)
8.161% (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of narrow money World Ranking: 57
$31.6 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$21.14 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of broad money World Ranking: 64
$65.71 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$66.23 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of domestic credit World Ranking: 58
$72.76 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$67.21 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares World Ranking: 51
$43.3 billion (31 December 2011)
$60.74 billion (31 December 2010)
$57.66 billion (31 December 2009)

Agriculture - products
Grain (mostly spring wheat), cotton; livestock

Industries
Oil, coal, iron ore, manganese, chromite, lead, zinc, copper, titanium, bauxite, gold, silver, phosphates, sulfur, uranium, iron and steel; tractors and other agricultural machinery, electric motors, construction materials

Industrial production growth rate World Ranking: 91
3.4% (2011 est.)

Electricity - production World Ranking: 34
86.2 billion kWh (2011 est.)

Electricity - consumption World Ranking: 33
88.11 billion kWh (2011 est.)

Electricity - exports
1.8 billion kWh (2011 est.)

Electricity - imports
3.7 billion kWh (2011 est.)

Oil - production World Ranking: 19
1.608 million bbl/day (2011 est.)

Oil - consumption World Ranking: 53
218,000 bbl/day (2011 est.)

Oil - exports World Ranking: 18
1.39 million bbl/day (2011 est.)

Oil - imports World Ranking: 65
94,430 bbl/day (2011 est.)

Oil - proved reserves World Ranking: 11
30 billion bbl (1 January 2011 est.)

Natural gas - production World Ranking: 32
20.2 billion cu m (2011 est.)

Natural gas - consumption World Ranking: 46
10.2 billion cu m (2011 est.)

Natural gas - exports World Ranking: 24
8.1 billion cu m (2011 est.)

Natural gas - imports World Ranking: 37
3.7 billion cu m (2011 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves World Ranking: 14
2.407 trillion cu m (1 January 2011 est.)

Current account balance World Ranking: 24
$13.61 billion (2011 est.)
$3.013 billion (2010 est.)

Exports World Ranking: 44
$88.89 billion (2011 est.)
$60.84 billion (2010 est.)

Exports - commodities
Oil and oil products 59%, ferrous metals 19%, chemicals 5%, machinery 3%, grain, wool, meat, coal

Exports - partners
China 21.7%, France 9.4%, Germany 8.3%, Russia 5.3%, Italy 5.2%, Canada 4.5%, Romania 4.5% (2011)

Imports World Ranking: 58
$42.13 billion (2011 est.)
$31.96 billion (2010 est.)

Imports - commodities
Machinery and equipment, metal products, foodstuffs

Imports - partners
China 30.2%, Russia 20%, Germany 7.4%, Ukraine 5% (2011)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold World Ranking: 50
$29.32 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$28.27 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Debt - external World Ranking: 41
$122.9 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$108.8 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home World Ranking: 42
$92.23 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$79.13 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad World Ranking: 47
$18.12 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$13.76 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Exchange rates
Tenge (KZT) per US dollar -
146.62 (2011 est.)
147.36 (2010 est.)
147.5 (2009)
120.25 (2008)
122.55 (2007)

Fiscal year
Calendar year


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  Kazakhstan (Astana):


  GPS points from Kazakhstan (Astana)

Kolodets Kazan Kazakhstan (general)

Kolkhoz Kyzyl-kayrat Almaty Oblysy

Alimkhan East Kazakhstan

Dungulyuk Batys Qazaqstan Oblysy

Bugor Lek Qostanay Oblysy

Murzachul East Kazakhstan

Zhayyq Atyrau Oblysy

Leninskiy Aktyubinskaya Oblast'




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