MOSCOW — Russia’s leading independent TV and media group, CTC Media, has achieved record viewing figures for the channel it runs in Kazakhstan, 31 Kanal.

First quarter figures for Kazakh television viewers show that 31 Kanal achieved 14.8% audience share — a record figure for any television channel in the oil and gas rich central Asian state.

Overall 31 Kanal is the second most popular station in Kazakhstan, CTC Media said in a statement Wednesday.

The figures compare favorably with the previous first quarter’s figures: the channel achieved between 10.5% last year, 12.7% in 2009 and 7.5% in 2008.

CTC Media said the big jump in viewership reflected a policy of strategic growth adopted in September 2009 with improved programming range.

“Effective cooperation” between CTC Media and 31 Kanal was also a key factor.

Founded in Almaty, Kazakhstan in 1992, 31 Kanal has been working with CTC Media for the past three years, airing popular CTC and other Russian-made shows.

Its audience share has more than doubled in that period, CTC Media said.

Marat Devlet-Kildeyev, CTC Media deputy general director who attended MIPTV in Cannes this week, said the success reflected the hard work put into restructuring 31 Kanal along the lines of CTC, including the strengthening of relationships with major international and regional television companies, and content providers.

Nurzhan Mykhamedzhanova, general director of 31 Kanal, said: “The success of our channel, in the first place, reflects the creative work of our team. We’ve been doing round-the-clock analysis of our audience, paying full attention to their programming preferences; our program schedules offer a positive attitude to life and a good mood for viewers.”