Kazakhstan experiencing baby boom
Kazakhstan's birth rate has rocketed in the last year, the country's government has revealed.
According to official data, more than 280,000 babies were born in the country between January and September 2012, Tengrinews.kz reports.
Erik Baizhunusov, the nation's vice-minister of healthcare, said this is 13,000 higher than the figure recorded a year earlier.
However, this surge in the number of babies being born could be one factor behind an increase in the infant mortality rate.
Figures from Unicef show that throughout the first nine months of the year, the child death rate stood at 13.9 per cent per every 1,000 live births.
While this is lower than it has been in previous years, it still compares unfavourably to many other countries in eastern and central Europe.
Unicef added that the maternal mortality rate in Kazakhstan is also relatively high in comparison to neighbouring nations.
The organisation is therefore stepping up its efforts to save the lives of women and children in the country.