Essay: Political Economy of Kazakhstan

Pages: 5 (1436 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 3  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: History - Asian  ·  Buy This Paper

Political Economy of Kazakhstan

When most people think of Kazakhstan, the will often associate it with one the former Soviet Republics. While this is true, there are many other factors that help to make the country unique. To fully understand the transformations that are taking place requires carefully examining a number of elements to include: the background, economic diversification / the impact on the economy, regionalization and general conditions. Together, these elements will highlight how the nation has been transforming and the way this is impacting economic growth.

Kazakhstan was started as a mixture of different nationalities, which migrated to the region in the early 13th century. The most notable include: Turkic and Mongol nomadic tribes. They were ruled by the Mongol Empire with the country encompassing one of their far reaching districts. As time went by, the nation began to develop its own unique language and traditions that were different from many parts of Central Asia. (Olcott)

This created conflicts between the Turkic minority (who were of Persian descent) and the Mongols (which spoke the Kazakh language). Until the 18th century, there was a struggle between these two groups and clans that were closely allied with them. During this period, the Mongols began to dominate the region and started to consolidate power among the various tribes that were conquered. This resulted in small kingdom being established based upon these cultural traditions. (Olcott)

In 1735, the Russians became increasingly involved with the establishment of an outpost and military garrison. This led to the country becoming conquered and annexed as a part of the Russian Empire. They imposed their own cultural traditions and language on the country. This created resentment among many Kazaks who felt that they were losing their heritage (which led in the establishment of a nationalist movement in the 19th century). (Olcott)

At the same time, there were tremendous amounts of immigration from Russia. This created increased levels of competition for land and water. The results were that the Russians began to play a dominate part in: social, economic and political life. (Olcott)

After the downfall of the Russian Empire (in 1917), Kazakhstan enjoyed a brief period of independence. However, this was short lived with the Communists attacking the country and wrestling it under its control through a series of brutal crackdowns and purges. During this time, there were tremendous amounts of immigration from Russia and many different ethnic groups migrated to the region. This changed the mix of the population with many of these ethnic groups playing an important part in moving the nation away from an Islamic dominated culture to one that was focused more the Russian-based traditions. (Olcott)

Under central planning of the Soviet Union, there was a focus on having the region produce tremendous amounts of grain. However, the continuing desire of many Turkic and Mongol ethnic groups grew over the course of time. In the late 1980s, they began to play an important part in the country's nationalist movements. Then, in 1991, they were able to gain independence and had a significant role in the nation's future. This is when many Russians and other non-Islamic ethic groups began to leave. At the same time, various reforms were enacted to move the nation away from the Soviet system towards one of a market-based economy. (Olcott)

This led to the development of oil and gas resources. These were used to help provide strong economic growth with an emphasis on diversifying the nation into other areas. There also was a focus on establishing strong relations with various foreign powers and neighboring states. These factors are illustrating how the country is continually transforming away from what it once was. When this happened, many regions began to experience a shift in the population toward Islamic-based culture. That is augmented with a market economy. (Olcott)

The Lack of Economic Diversification and the Impact on the Economy

Economic diversification occurred during the 2000s. This is when the country wanted to move away from the production of agricultural-based products and oil / gas. These factors created a focus on developing other sectors such as manufacturing and banking. The impact is that the nation was able to become the first of the former Soviet Republics to pay off all of its outstanding debt. This helped Kazakhstan to receive an investment… [END OF PREVIEW]

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APA Format

Political Economy of Kazakhstan.  (2013, May 11).  Retrieved June 15, 2019, from

MLA Format

"Political Economy of Kazakhstan."  11 May 2013.  Web.  15 June 2019. <>.

Chicago Format

"Political Economy of Kazakhstan."  May 11, 2013.  Accessed June 15, 2019.