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Journalist profession: how much do specialists earn and spend in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan
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Journalist profession: how much do specialists earn and spend in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan

We talked with representatives of the field of journalism about sources of income, expenses and budget management.

Botagoz Aitzhanova, 31, city — Nur-Sultan, journalist, entrepreneur, @botagoz.aitzhanova

WhatsApp Image 2022-04-26 at 15.58.45.jpeg

I have been working in journalism for more than ten years, since the third year of university. Previously collaborated with sites Strategy2050.kz, Bnews.kz, and started working in Tengrinews.kz since 2018.

I prepare interviews for Tengrinews.kz, the heroes of which are ministers, heads of departments, political scientists, stars of the music and film show industry. I also do live broadcasts on my Instagram page if there is an interesting question or speaker.

The source of income is the publication of interviews in the editorial office. I am often approached by private or public companies regarding the organization of events, work on announcements, press releases, post-releases, content for social networks.

The average payment for the publication of interviews in the region of 30 000-60 000 tenge — $68-136 and above, depending on exclusivity, availability of photo and video content. The work related to the preparation of texts for events is also paid in different ways — from 200 000 tenge — $448 and above.

I invest in education, travel and sports

I had free time in April. I was thinking about having a rest, doing something with my «hands» and breaking the stereotype that journalists only do intellectual work. I have founded a startup for the production of dates in chocolate and presents for the holidays, «Delicious date». It has become an additional source of income.

I invest in education, travel and sports. I put aside 7-10% of my income, but it doesn't always work out.

The main item of expenditure is the purchase of food and entertainment: beauty salons, cafes, restaurants. It takes from 100 000 tenge —227 $. I spend from 20 000 tenge — 46 $ on a taxi.

Utilities cost from 15 000 tenge. Additionally, I pay for the Internet: home and mobile — 8000 tenge — 19 $. There are spontaneous purchases, like spending on birthdays, it is about 30,000-50,000 tenge — 68-113 $.

I also buy various courses in journalism, business, psychology. They cost from 15 000 to 50 000 tenge — 35-113 $.

I don't count every penny, but I see the big picture, where and to whom you need to pay, how much of the total budget to postpone and what part to leave for life.

Sabina Odinaeva, 21, city — Tashkent, editor, project manager, @sayiddina_


I am a third-year student of the University of Journalism and Mass Communications of Uzbekistan. I work in the publishing house and PR agency Dinara&Co as a project manager and editor of the glossy magazine for travelers and business visitors in Uzbekistan Visit Uzbekistan. We create content about the country's tourism potential, social and cultural events, gastronomy, traditions, heritage and people. We provide the necessary information about routes and rules for travelers.

Officially, I receive at least $450 per month

My tasks include: compiling content for the magazine, working with authors, editing materials, conducting interviews, writing interesting articles, developing and promoting the brand, interacting with graphic designers. All stages go through with me: from the creation of the concept of a new release to printing and distribution.

Officially, I receive at least $450 per month. I am also often involved in PR projects that are paid extra. The company also has quarterly bonuses for a good amount.

I save 50% of my income monthly. I haven't tried investing yet, but I plan to in the future.

My regular expenses:

— payment of the contract at the university — 7 million sums per year — 628 $

— travel expenses — 30 000 sums per day — 3 $

— internet — 150 000 sums per month — 13 $

— weekly travel — 200 000 sums per week — 18 $

— lunch break — 50 000 sums per day — 5 $

— payment of utilities — 300 000 sums per month — 27 $

— purchase of products — 200 000 sums per week — 18 $

— purchase of books — 200 000 sums per month — 18 $

— self-care services — 300 000 sums per month — 27 $

— attendance of master classes, trainings — 200 000 sums per month — 18 $

— entertainment and holidays — 200 000 sums per month — 18 $

— different amounts go to charity.

Budget management is a difficult topic for me. I always wonder what I spent my money on. I've been trying to fix everything for the last two months. I downloaded the app to keep track of income and expenses. This helps to control cash reserves and not spend money on unnecessary things.

Aizhamal Jamankulova, 29 years old, city — Bishkek, news editor in the online publication Kloop Media, @aikaganieva


I work as a news editor at the online publication Kloop Media. I also supervise the Journalism School and work with students of this faculty at universities in Kyrgyzstan.

Employees of our publication write news, make reports, conduct research, and engage in data journalism. We also release special projects and create video content. From the very beginning we have been teaching young people journalism, and in 2018 we launched the first Kyrgyz space program.

Journalists of private independent media in Bishkek receive an average of $400. Some conduct one-day or long-term trainings. Each organization sets its own price for services, on average — from $ 60 and above.

Journalists of private independent media in Bishkek receive an average of $400

Going to the store costs $12. I buy food for myself and the child: bread, eggs, dairy products, sausages, fruits and vegetables.

In summer we go to Lake Issyk-Kul. Rooms cost from $20 with meals per day for one person. On weekends we go to the cinema with my child. Sometimes I go out to bars with friends.

Utilities come out about $30 along with internet and cable TV fees. Clothes for a child for costs from $ 80.

I am registered with the tax service as an individual entrepreneur, so I pay 4% of my income and $27 to the Social Fund.

Previously, it took $30 for sports classes, and $50 for programming courses for a child. Now these expenses have been temporarily postponed.

Care procedures cost about $26 per month. There are also unplanned expenses, such as the purchase of medicines and the services of a doctor or dentist.

Together with my son, we are saving for his education. We store funds in dollars. I plan to invest in shares of large foreign companies.

The figures are indicated at the exchange rate as of 05/04/2022.

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