Europe / Caspian / CIS

Kazakhstan flag
Summary | Profile

Country profile: Kazakhstan

Location: Central Asia, northwest of China; a small portion west of the Ural River in eastern-most Europe
Climate: continental, cold winters and hot summers, arid and semiarid
Terrain: extends from the Volga to the Altai Mountains and from the plains in western Siberia to oases and desert in Central Asia
Size: 2717300 sq. km total (Land area: 2669800 sq. km  Water area: 47500
Population: 15,340,533 (July 2008 est.)
Languages: Kazakh (Qazaq, state language) 64.4%, Russian (official, used in everyday business, designated the "language of interethnic communication") 95% (2001 est.)
Government: republic; authoritarian presidential rule, with little power outside the executive branch
Capital city: Astana
Legal system: based on Islamic law and Roman law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Currency: tenge (KZT)

Country profile

Kazakhstan has the Caspian Sea region's largest recoverable crude oil reserves, and its production accounts for over half of the roughly 2.8 million barrels per day (bbl/d) currently being produced in the region (including regional oil producers Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan). Kazakhstan oil exports are the foundation of the country’s economy and have ensured that average real GDP growth has stayed above 9 percent for the last 6 years.

Real GDP growth during 2007 averaged 9.5 percent. Kazakhstan's growing petroleum industry accounts for roughly 30 percent of the country’s GDP and over half of its export revenues. In an effort to reduce Kazakhstan's exposure to price fluctuations for energy and commodities exports, the government created the National Oil Fund of Kazakhstan. Due to high oil prices the international reserves and assets in the oil fund have doubled in the last year to $20 billion in October 2007.

Native 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-Kazakhs to outnumber natives.

Independence in 1991 caused many of these newcomers to emigrate. Kazakhstan's economy is larger than those of all the other Central Asian states combined, largely due to the country's vast natural resources and a recent history of political stability. Current issues include: developing a cohesive national identity; expanding the development of the country's 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 Kazakhstan's competitiveness; and strengthening relations with neighboring states and other foreign powers.


Energy production and consumption

Oil Gas
Production: 1 million bbl/day (2005 est.)  
Consumption: 234,000 bbl/day (2005 est.)  
Exports: 1 million bbl/day (2004 est.)  
Imports: 113,600 bbl/day (2004 est.)  
Reserves: 9 billion bbl/day (2006 est.)  
Major fields:

Kazakhstan - recent news

25 Apr 24
Kazakhstan: Tengizchevroil starts WPMP operations at Tengiz oil field in Kazakhstan
Chevron has announced that its 50 percent owned affiliate Tengizchevroil (TCO) has safely commenced operations at its Wellhead Pressure Management Project (WPMP) at the Tengiz oil field in Kazakhstan. This marks important progress for TCO’s overall expansion project at Tengiz.
19 Jan 24
Kazakhstan: Eni signs strategic agreements with Kazakh companies during the official visit of the President of Kazakhstan Tokayev to Italy
Eni CEO and Chairman of KMG signed a Joint Confirmation agreement on an innovative 250 MW Hybrid Renewables-Gas Project in Kazakhstan. Eni also signed a Memorandum with Sovereign Wealth Fund Samruk-Kazyna on additional energy transition projects and Cooperation Agreement with QazaqGaz.
20 Dec 23
Kazakhstan: Zenith Energy announces acquisition of Devonian Petroleum
Zenith Energy has announced the conditional acquisition of an initial 50% of the shares and voting rights in Devonian Petroleum, a private oil company registered in the UK, for a total investment in cash and in kind presently assessed at approx. 5 million USD. In 2019, Devonian was awarded the Akkudukski exploration block in the Precaspian Basin, Kazakhstan.
04 Dec 23
Kazakhstan: COP28: TotalEnergies signs the Agreement on Investment for its 1 GW Wind Power Project in Kazakhstan
On the occasion of the COP28 in Dubai, TotalEnergies has signed the Agreement on Investment (AoI) for TotalEnergies’ Mirny project. The largest wind energy project ever initiated in Kazakhstan, Mirny will supply more than 1 million people with low-carbon electricity and will avoid the emission of 3.5 million tons of CO2 annually in the country.
30 Nov 23
Kazakhstan: Zenith Energy incorporates new Kazakhstan subsidiary
Zenith Energy has announced that, as it is now in the advanced stage of finalising terms for the potential acquisition of oil production and development assets, it has incorporated a subsidiary in the Republic of Kazakhstan.

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