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Nur-Sultan as “Smart City” Pioneer

Thursday 17 October 2019

LYON (euronews) — The World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) held their annual global conference in Nur-Sultan, the capital of Kazakhstan this year, thanks to the cities attempts to use technology to improve resident’s lives, and become a so-called “smart city”.

The conference had one clear message though: attracting tourists should not come at the expense of residents.

Indeed, according to the UN, by 2050 around 70% of the world’s population will live in urban areas. Cities will have to step up to new challenges with smart solutions. But how will these solutions affect the economy and urban tourism? In 2018 international tourism hit 1.4 bln and with new Smart technologies, experts say that number will only rise.

It is no coincidence that Nur-Sultan (ex Astana) was chosen to host the UNWTO summit. Its population has tripled since the 90s and the Kazakh capital is very young which makes it a lot easier to begin implementing new approaches to develop the urban environment.

Altai Kulginov, Mayor of Nur-Sultan, said:

20 years ago the population of the city was less than 300,000 people. Today there’s over a million people living in Nur-Sultan. With the great inflow of people we need to introduce new technologies.


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