East Kazakhstan Province (Kazakh: Шығыс Қазақстан облысы, Şığıs Qazaqstan oblısı) is a province of Kazakhstan. It occupies the easternmost part of Kazakhstan, along both sides of the Irtysh River and Lake Zaysan. Its administrative center is Oskemen (also known as Ust-Kamenogorsk). The province borders Russia in the north and northeast and the People's Republic of China (Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region) in the south and southeast. The easternmost point of the Oblast is also very near, within 50 kilometers or so of the westernmost tip of Mongolia; however, Kazakhstan and Mongolia do not share a common border, the two countries being separated by a small part of Russia and China.It also borders the Kazakh Provinces of Pavlodar Province (to the north west), Karagandy Province (to the west) and Almaty Province (to the south).
Population: 1,396,593 (2009 Census results);1,531,024 (1999 Census results). 318,800 (as of 4/1/2011) live in the capital. The area has many Russians and Ukrainians; the capital itself has more of those two groups than Kazakhs themselves. The area is 283,300 in square kilometers.
The Altai Mountains (Altay Mountains) are a mountain range in East-Central Asia, where Russia, China, Mongolia and Kazakhstan come together, and are where the rivers Irtysh and Ob have their headwaters. The northwest end of the range is at 52° N and between 84° and 90° E (where it merges with the Sayan Mountains to the east), and extends southeast from there to about 45° N and 99° E, where it gradually becomes lower and merges into the high plateau of the Gobi Desert.
In Turkic and Mongolic languages, the name, Altai, means the "Golden Mountain"; al meaning red/gold and tai/tag, mountain. (Chinese: 金山; literally "Gold Mountain" in Chinese texts). The proposed Altaic language family takes its name from this mountain range.