[lg policy] Kazakhstan uses Russian experience in language policy

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at GMAIL.COM
Wed Aug 10 16:21:22 UTC 2011

Kazakhstan uses Russian experience in language policy

[09.08.2011 14:11]

The new bill on language policy, to be unveiled in Kazakhstan by
September 1, is based on the best international experience, including
the Russian federal law on the state language, an official said,
Itar-Tass reported. "We are using Russian experience in language
policy issues, as well as in drawing this legislation," Secretary of
the republic's Ministry of Culture Zhanna Kurmangaliyeva told a news
conference in the Kazakh capital on Tuesday.

Earlier, the Kazakh authorities placed the text of the bill on the
Internet. It envisions much higher requirements to proficiency in the
Kazakh language from 2013. It follows from the text that the
government bodies will only accept statements in Kazakh and that they
will answer in Kazakh, too. Also, it provides for keeping statistics,
financial reports and technical documents in Kazakh at all
organizations, regardless of the form of ownership.

The text caused a public stir and controversy, but Kurmangaliyeva
called it "a tempest in a teapot." She explained that the Internet
version of the document was not the final text to be considered by the
parliament and the government. "It's just a working text forwarded to
all the government bodies and public associations for joint work and
public expert examination," the secretary noted.

Kurmangaliyeva said the Ministry of Culture was planning to set up a
Public Council for development of languages. This body will be
discussing the bill. "We'd like to have a floor where everybody can
meet: both the supporters and opponents of the bill. We live in one
country and are interested in its stability and in the state language
being a factor of national unity," she said.


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