Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Almaty: the city, where I am going to spend one year

What is actually Kazakhstan?

Kazakhstan is the ninth-largest country in the world by area, but it is only the 62nd country in population. The population in 2006 is estimated at 15,300,000. Kazakhstan is the largest landlocked country in the world.

The economic development of the country has been rapid recently. GDP growth constantly exceeded 9% since 2000. So, similiar to Estonia. One of missions is to find out, what is such growth based on.

What is actually Almaty?

Like in many other countries in the world, the capital and the rest of teh country are two different worlds.

Officially, the capital of the country is Astana in the centre of the country. Almaty was the capital before the mid-1990s. Almaty people call the city "Southern capital". So far, it is still financial and business centre of Kazakhstan and the whole central Asia.

Big part of oil incomes (Kazakhstan has vast natural resources, including petrolium and natural gas) flows in to Almaty. One can truly see it. The city is booming. Young people are fashionable. I have never seen so many expensive clothes trends of boutiques like in Almaty. I have neved seen so many expensive cars like in Almaty.

K6ik need, kes arvavad, et kogu Kesk-Aasia on mingi m6ttetult vaene regioon, oleksid v2ga yllatunud, avastades, et Almaty meenutab m6nda rikast USA v6i L22ne-Euroopa linna teatud Aasia omap2raga. See muidugi kajastub ka hindades. Almaty on 30. linn maailmas oma kalliduse poolest.

Economic development has some negative sides as well. Like in big Chinese coastal cities, the main issue here is environment. There are many cars and terrible traffic jams. Almaty is situated in the valley, which makes the circulation of teh air just minor here.

That all compensates with the fact that Almaty is very green city. Indeed, in Soviet times it was known as the garden-city. There are plenty of green alleys, parks and gardens everywhere. I truly enjoy it.

The best part of this city for me are neighbouring mountains. They are simply amazing. Me and Viljo had chance to get proof of that during three-days trip to the mountains next to it. Although it was raining and tehre was not that much sun, the views were breathtaking.

Matk m2gedesse on v2ga eriline syndmus. Nagu kunagi ytles yks my s6ber Slovakkiast, ei l2he halb inimene m2gedesse. T6epoolest, 6hk on seal nii puhas ja loodus nii imeline, et k6ik tumedad m6tted lihtsalt kaovad 2ra ja j22b vaid meelerahu.

How I am doing?

So far, I live in one-room apartment, which is cool. The AIESEC work will be definetely challenging, but that's why I came here. In general, I am doing great, because there are some great people around me here. That's enough to feel happy.


pugovichka said...


Nice to hear that you survived in the train:)

You know, although my home country is the world's biggest one, my main association with Kazakhstan was exactly the word "big" which I never really considered for Russia... :)

And my favorite hotel called "Kazakhstan" and the National Bank near AIESEC office in Almaty are perfect illustrations of these 'phenomenon'.

Can't help counting days till my CEED in this big country :)


Gera said...

I will surely look forward for next posting. It is great to find out more about some foreign country, which i don't know anything about.

Kadi said...

So good you are doing great there and had new experiences during the way. Keep the stories coming. ;)

Many hugs from your old room (yes, I'm sitting behind your old desk). =)

Deniss Rutšeikov said...


Thanks for greetings!

Kadi, take care of my old desk. Many good moments of learning are connected with it for me... :)

Anonymous said...

What do you see as your biggest challenge being MCP there?

Hugs from Estonia :)


Deniss Rutšeikov said...

Haha! Typical Siki and here questions :)

The biggest challenge is to make it all work here - I am first one to do it. And it means many things and several goals. I can send you my personal plan with description of my goals here by e-mail, if you want ;)

+}:-] said...

The Internet in Kazakhstan: welcome to the land of $3,355 per month DSL

So which kidney did you donate for this post?

Deniss Rutšeikov said...

Hey +}:-]

No donations were made.

As for the interent - I am using quite fast interent right now in one of the universities.

Internet connection in general is indeed a way slower than in majority of European country.

But it was like that some 5-7 years go in my homeland Estonia as well. This society here is simply not ready. But it will be, believe me.

And not everything, which is worse than in USA or Western Europe at the moment, is necessarily related to bad governance of the country. The starting point was just too different...

Enjoy life! It can be enjoyable with slow internet as well!