Modern Kazakhstan is built on 3,000 years of extraordinary history. The country’s development has been influenced by such legends as Alexander the Great and Genghis Khan. For centuries, the Silk Road through Kazakhstan served as one of the world's oldest and most historically significant trade routes. All of this has contributed to the richness of the Kazakh culture and its capacity to adapt and develop.
Kazakhstan is located in the heart of Eurasia, almost equidistant from the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. Throughout history, Kazakhstan was an arena for brisk commercial and political relations and it now plays an important role as a link between Europe, Central Asia and the rapidly developing Asian-Pacific region.
Kazakhstan’s population constitutes about 16.79 million citizens. The main ethnic groups present in the country are Kazakhs (58.9%), Russians (25.9%), Ukrainians (2.9%), Uighurs (1.5%), Tatars (1.5%), Volga Germans (1.5%) and other ethnicities (4%). The official language is Kazakh but most business is conducted in the Russian language, although the use of Kazakh is on the rise. There are over 140 different ethnic groups in Kazakhstan and the country is well-known for its lack of interethnic tensions. Kazakhstan has put great efforts in place to install and maintain peace among its ethnic groups, which is essential for the internal stability of the country. When visiting the country in 2008, former UN General Secretary, Kofi Annan, declared, “Kazakhstan may serve as example of a peaceful multiethnic country where ethnic diversity is a blessing, but not a curse”.