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Experiences of a Dutch Journalist




Industrial cities, January 2000

Visiting dying industrial cities in south Kazakhstan for an article on a European Union project. In Kazakhstan there are approximately forty of these cities, built by the Russians in the 40's and 50's. After the collapse of the Soviet Union production collapsed and unemployment increased.



Karatau seen from the "Black hill' the city was named after. The metallurgical factory is in the background.


Empty apartment buildings. Even the window frames have been removed to serve as fire wood.


Street in Karatau in the afternoon. No cars, there's a shortage of fuel.


Only one bus every day to the big city Zhambul.


European Union business training for unemployed. No central heating in the building...


This woman has started a small business after the training. She bought four chickens and two ducks. She is selling the eggs on the market.


This restaurant owner increased the number of staff from three to eight after the training.


Traditional meal to celebrate the success of the project. The akim (mayor) is the honoured guest. He's dividing the sheep head between the guest.


Do you want to read more about dying industrial cities? Check out the following article: