The Republic of Kazakhstan is the largest landlocked country in the world, mainly situated in Central Asia and partly in Eastern Europe, bordered by Russia in the north, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan in the south, and China in the east. The transcontinental country is home to approximately 18.8 million residents. Its economy is the largest and the strongest in Central Asia and the first former Soviet Union member state to repay all of its loans to the International Monetary Fund.
Following the breakup of the Soviet Union in December 1991, most of the former member countries, including the Republic of Kazakhstan, were still using the Russian ruble banknotes. In July 1993, Russia released a new national monetary unit, pushing out Kazakhstan and other countries that were still using the Russian ruble with only three days’ notice. As a result, the Kazakhstani tenge was introduced on November 15, 1993. The first issues of the tenge were designed by Timur Suleymenov, Mendybai Alin, Khayrulla Gabzhalilov, and Asimsaly Duzelkanov. The tenge-denominated paper bills were printed by Harrison & Sons while the tiyn-denominated notes were printed by the Securities Printing Workshop of the Banknote Factory of the National Bank of Kazakhstan which was formerly known as the Direction of Production Plants.
In 1993, the National Bank of Kazakhstan began issuing banknotes the feature Muslim scholar and philosopher Abu Nasr al-Farabi wearing a turban. In 2006, a set of notes designed by National Bank currency team member, Mendybai Alin, were released. The notes carry the Astana-Baiterek monument on its obverse.