Latin-based Kazakh alphabet draft presented

Scholars presented a draft Sept. 12 of the Kazakh alphabet based on Latin script. Developed by two teams at the Shayakhmetov National Coordination and Methodological Centre for Language Development and the Baitursynov Institute of Linguistics, the draft is now open for public discussion.


The draft alphabet consists of 25 letters and makes extensive use of digraphs (a combination of two letters representing one sound) to fully support the sound system of the Kazakh language. According to Shayakhmetov Centre Director Yerbol Tleshov, the scholars opted out from including diacritical marks (various superscripts, subscripts, etc.), arguing their rare usage could result in a loss of sounds unique to the Kazakh language.

Minister of Education and Science Yerlan Sagadiyev praised the efforts of the two working groups and challenged anyone with “any specific changes to propose” to voice his or her comments.