Kazakhstan-Veteran Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev is set to feature on new banknotes in the Central Asian country, the national bank said Tuesday, in another testimony to his personality cult.

New 10,000-tenge ($30) banknotes that feature the portrait of the 76-year-old leader will be put into circulation on December 1, in time for a holiday celebrating his leadership.

“All Kazakhstan’s achievements since independence are inextricably linked to the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev,” national bank chairman Daniyar Akishev said Tuesday at a press conference in the capital Astana.

The tenge is one of many ex-Soviet currencies that have been battered by Western sanctions against neighbouring Russia over Ukraine and depressed energy prices. Nazarbayev, officially known by the title “Father of the Nation”, is already the subject of a flattering biographical film while glitzy Astana has a museum in his honour.

But the autocrat, whose rule over Kazakhstan began before the country gained formal independence from Moscow in 1991, is not the first ruler in the energy-rich region to adorn a banknote.  In neighbouring Turkmenistan, late leader Saparmurat Niyazov appeared on the local manat currency but was removed from bills and coins two years after his death in 2006.

Politicians in impoverished Tajikistan have also called recently for banknotes bearing the image of President Emomali Rakhmon, in power since 1992.

Central Asia is a landlocked majority Muslim region where both China and former overlord Russia have strong political and economic influence.