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Introduction :: Kyrgyzstan
A Central Asian country of incredible natural beauty and proud nomadic traditions, most of Kyrgyzstan was formally annexed to Russia in 1876. The Kyrgyz staged a major revolt against the Tsarist Empire in 1916 in which almost one-sixth of the Kyrgyz population was killed. Kyrgyzstan became a Soviet republic in 1936 and achieved independence in 1991 when the USSR dissolved. Nationwide demonstrations in the spring of 2005 resulted in the ouster of President Askar AKAEV, who had run the country since 1990. Subsequent presidential elections in July 2005 were won overwhelmingly by former prime minister Kurmanbek BAKIEV. Over the next few years, the new president manipulated the parliament to accrue new powers for himself. In July 2009, after months of harassment against his opponents and media critics, BAKIEV won re-election in a presidential campaign that the international community deemed flawed. In April 2010, nationwide protests led to the resignation and expulsion of BAKIEV. He was replaced by President Roza OTUNBAEVA who will serve as president until 31 December 2011 according to a presidential decree issued 19 May 2010. Presidential elections are scheduled to be held in October 2011. Continuing concerns include: endemic corruption, poor interethnic relations, and terrorism.
Geography :: Kyrgyzstan
Central Asia, west of China
Geographic coordinates:
41 00 N, 75 00 E
Map references:
total: 199,951 sq km
country comparison to the world: 86
land: 191,801 sq km
water: 8,150 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly smaller than South Dakota
Land boundaries:
total: 3,051 km
border countries: China 858 km, Kazakhstan 1,224 km, Tajikistan 870 km, Uzbekistan 1,099 km
0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims:
none (landlocked)
Current Weather
dry continental to polar in high Tien Shan Mountains; subtropical in southwest (Fergana Valley); temperate in northern foothill zone
peaks of Tien Shan and associated valleys and basins encompass entire nation
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Kara-Daryya (Karadar'ya) 132 m
highest point: Jengish Chokusu (Pik Pobedy) 7,439 m
Natural resources:
abundant hydropower; significant deposits of gold and rare earth metals; locally exploitable coal, oil, and natural gas; other deposits of nepheline, mercury, bismuth, lead, and zinc
Land use:
arable land: 6.55%
permanent crops: 0.28%
other: 93.17%
note: Kyrgyzstan has the world's largest natural-growth walnut forest (2005)
Irrigated land:
10,720 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources:
46.5 cu km (1997)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):
total: 10.08 cu km/yr (3%/3%/94%)
per capita: 1,916 cu m/yr (2000)
Natural hazards:
Environment - current issues:
water pollution; many people get their water directly from contaminated streams and wells; as a result, water-borne diseases are prevalent; increasing soil salinity from faulty irrigation practices
Environment - international agreements:
party to: Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note:
landlocked; entirely mountainous, dominated by the Tien Shan range; 94% of the country is 1,000 m above sea level with an average elevation of 2,750 m; many tall peaks, glaciers, and high-altitude lakes
People :: Kyrgyzstan
5,508,626 (July 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 110
Age structure:
0-14 years: 29.7% (male 822,128/female 789,425)
15-64 years: 64.5% (male 1,717,497/female 1,787,551)
65 years and over: 5.8% (male 123,045/female 192,101) (2010 est.)
Median age:
total: 24.7 years
male: 23.8 years
female: 25.6 years (2010 est.)
Population growth rate:
1.414% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 88
Birth rate:
23.58 births/1,000 population (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 70
Death rate:
6.85 deaths/1,000 population (July 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 144
Net migration rate:
-2.58 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 180
urban population: 36% of total population (2008)
rate of urbanization: 1.6% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.053 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.64 male(s)/female
total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2010 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: 30.25 deaths/1,000 live births
country comparison to the world: 73
male: 35.09 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 25.15 deaths/1,000 live births (2010 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 69.74 years
country comparison to the world: 147
male: 65.74 years
female: 73.94 years (2010 est.)
Total fertility rate:
2.64 children born/woman (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 82
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
less than 0.1% (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 120
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
4,200 (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 125
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
fewer than 200 (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 110
noun: Kyrgyzstani(s)
adjective: Kyrgyzstani
Ethnic groups:
Kyrgyz 64.9%, Uzbek 13.8%, Russian 12.5%, Dungan 1.1%, Ukrainian 1%, Uighur 1%, other 5.7% (1999 census)
Muslim 75%, Russian Orthodox 20%, other 5%
Kyrgyz 64.7% (official), Uzbek 13.6%, Russian 12.5% (official), Dungun 1%, other 8.2% (1999 census)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 98.7%
male: 99.3%
female: 98.1% (1999 census)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 13 years
male: 12 years
female: 13 years (2008)
Education expenditures:
6.6% of GDP (2007)
country comparison to the world: 29
Government :: Kyrgyzstan
Country name:
conventional long form: Kyrgyz Republic
conventional short form: Kyrgyzstan
local long form: Kyrgyz Respublikasy
local short form: Kyrgyzstan
former: Kirghiz Soviet Socialist Republic
Government type:
name: Bishkek
geographic coordinates: 42 52 N, 74 36 E
time difference: UTC+6 (11 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions:
7 provinces (oblastlar, singular - oblasty) and 1 city* (shaar); Batken Oblasty, Bishkek Shaary*, Chuy Oblasty (Bishkek), Jalal-Abad Oblasty, Naryn Oblasty, Osh Oblasty, Talas Oblasty, Ysyk-Kol Oblasty (Karakol)
note: administrative divisions have the same names as their administrative centers (exceptions have the administrative center name following in parentheses)
31 August 1991 (from the Soviet Union)
National holiday:
Independence Day, 31 August (1991)
27 June 2010
Legal system:
based on French and Russian laws; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: President Roza OTUNBAEVA (since 19 May 2010); note - OTUNBAEVA became acting president on 7 April 2010 following the early April 2010 riots that overthrew President Kurmanbek BAKIEV; she was appointed president through 31 December 2011 by a 19 May 2010 decree of the provisional government, which also prohibited her from running in the next presidential election; she was officially sworn in on 3 July 2010
head of government: Prime Minister Almazbek ATAMBAEV (since 17 December 2010); First Deputy Prime Minister - Omurbek BABANOV (since 17 December 2010); Deputy Prime Ministers - Shamil ATAKHANOV, Ibragim JUNUSOV, Jantoro SATYBALDIEV (since 17 December 2010)
cabinet: Cabinet of Ministers proposed by the prime minister, appointed by the president; ministers in charge of defense and security, are appointed solely by the president
elections: Kurmanbek BAKIEV reelected by popular vote for a five-year term; election last held on 23 July 2009 (next scheduled for 2011); prime minister nominated by the parliamentary party holding more than 50% of the seats; if no such party exists, the president selects the party that will form a coalition majority and government
election results: Kurmanbek BAKIEV elected president; percent of vote - Kurmanbek BAKIEV 76.1%, Almaz ATAMBAEV 8.4%, Temir SARIEV 6.7%, other candidates 8.8%
Legislative branch:
unicameral Supreme Council or Jogorku Kengesh (120 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections: last held on 10 October 2007 (next to be held in 2015)
election results: Supreme Council - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - Ata-Jurt 28, SDPK 26, Ar-Namys 25, Respublika 23, Ata-Meken 18
Judicial branch:
Supreme Court; Constitutional Court (judges of both the Supreme and Constitutional Courts are appointed for 10-year terms by the Jogorku Kengesh on the recommendation of the president; their mandatory retirement age is 70 years); Higher Court of Arbitration; Local Courts (judges appointed by the president on the recommendation of the National Council on Legal Affairs for a probationary period of five years, then 10 years)
Political parties and leaders:
Ar-Namys (Dignity) Party [Feliks KULOV]; Ata-Jurt (Homeland) [Kamchybek TASHIEV, Akhmat KELDIBEKOV]; Ata-Meken (Fatherland) [Omurbek TEKEBAEV]; Butun Kyrgyzstan (All Kyrgyzstan) [Adakhan MADUMAROV, Miroslav NIYAZOV]; Respublika [Omurbek BABANOV]; Social-Democratic Party of Kyrgyzstan (SDPK) [Almazbek ATAMBAEV]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Adilet Legal Clinic [Cholpon JAKUPOVA]; Coalition for Democracy and Civil Society [Dinara OSHURAKHUNOVA]; Interbilim [Asiya SASYKBAEVA]
International organization participation:
Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Mukhtar JUMALIEV
chancery: 2360 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 449-9822
FAX: [1] (202) 386-7550
consulate(s): New York
Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Tatiana GFOELLER
embassy: 171 Prospect Mira, Bishkek 720016
mailing address: use embassy street address
telephone: [996] (312) 551-241, (517) 777-217
FAX: [996] (312) 551-264
Flag description:
red field with a yellow sun in the center having 40 rays representing the 40 Kyrgyz tribes; on the obverse side the rays run counterclockwise, on the reverse, clockwise; in the center of the sun is a red ring crossed by two sets of three lines, a stylized representation of a "tunduk" - the crown of a traditional Kyrgyz yurt; red symbolizes bravery and valor, the sun evinces peace and wealth
National anthem:
name: "Kyrgyz Respublikasynyn Mamlekettik Gimni" (National Anthem of the Kyrgyz Republic)
lyrics/music: Djamil SADYKOV and Eshmambet KULUEV/Nasyr DAVLESOV and Kalyi MOLDOBASANOV
note: adopted 1992
Economy :: Kyrgyzstan
Economy - overview:
Kyrgyzstan is a poor, mountainous country with a dominant agricultural sector. Cotton, tobacco, wool, and meat are the main agricultural products, although only tobacco and cotton are exported in any quantity. Industrial exports include gold, mercury, uranium, natural gas, and electricity. The economy depends heavily on gold exports - mainly from output at the Kumtor gold mine. Following independence, Kyrgyzstan was progressive in carrying out market reforms, such as an improved regulatory system and land reform. Kyrgyzstan was the first Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) country to be accepted into the World Trade Organization. Much of the government's stock in enterprises has been sold. Drops in production had been severe after the breakup of the Soviet Union in December 1991, but by mid-1995, production began to recover and exports began to increase. In 2005, the BAKIEV government and international financial institutions initiated a comprehensive medium-term poverty reduction and economic growth strategy. Bishkek agreed to pursue much needed tax reform and, in 2006, became eligible for the heavily indebted poor countries (HIPC) initiative. The government made steady strides in controlling its substantial fiscal deficit, nearly closing the gap between revenues and expenditures in 2006, before boosting expenditures more than 20% in 2007-08. GDP grew about 8% annually in 2007-08, partly due to higher gold prices internationally, but slowed to 2.3% in 2009. The overthrow of President BAKIEV in April, 2010 and subsequent ethnic clashes left hundreds dead and damaged infrastructure. Shrinking trade and agricultural production, as well as political instability, caused GDP to contract about 3.5% in 2010. The fiscal deficit widened to 12% of GDP, reflecting significant increases in crisis-related spending, including both rehabilitation of damaged infrastructure and bank recapitalization. Progress in reconstruction, fighting corruption, restructuring domestic industry, and attracting foreign aid and investment are key to future growth.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$11.85 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 143
$12.28 billion (2009 est.)
$12 billion (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars
GDP (official exchange rate):
$4.444 billion (2010 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
-3.5% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 209
2.3% (2009 est.)
8.4% (2008 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):
$2,200 (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 184
$2,300 (2009 est.)
$2,200 (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 24.6%
industry: 25%
services: 50.4% (2010 est.)
Labor force:
2.344 million (2007)
country comparison to the world: 111
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 48%
industry: 12.5%
services: 39.5% (2005 est.)
Unemployment rate:
18% (2004 est.)
country comparison to the world: 161
Population below poverty line:
40% (2004 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 3.6%
highest 10%: 25.9% (2004)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
30.3 (2003)
country comparison to the world: 111
29 (2001)
Investment (gross fixed):
26.4% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 35
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
4.8% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 139
6.9% (2009 est.)
Central bank discount rate:
9.07% (31 December 2009)
country comparison to the world: 18
15.11% (31 December 2008)
Commercial bank prime lending rate:
23.03% (31 December 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 19
19.86% (31 December 2008 est.)
Stock of narrow money:
$714.9 million (31 December 2010 est)
$826.4 million (31 December 2009 est)
Stock of broad money:
$1.1 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$1.247 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
Stock of domestic credit:
$505.4 million (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 163
$572.9 million (31 December 2009 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares:
$71.84 million (31 December 2009)
country comparison to the world: 112
$93.79 million (31 December 2008)
$121 million (31 December 2007)
Agriculture - products:
tobacco, cotton, potatoes, vegetables, grapes, fruits and berries; sheep, goats, cattle, wool
small machinery, textiles, food processing, cement, shoes, sawn logs, refrigerators, furniture, electric motors, gold, rare earth metals
Industrial production growth rate:
6% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 55
Electricity - production:
15.96 billion kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 77
Electricity - consumption:
9 billion kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 90
Electricity - exports:
2.379 billion kWh (2007 est.)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2008 est.)
Oil - production:
979 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 106
Oil - consumption:
15,000 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 138
Oil - exports:
1,890 bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 116
Oil - imports:
12,850 bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 133
Oil - proved reserves:
40 million bbl (1 January 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 80
Natural gas - production:
30 million cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 85
Natural gas - consumption:
750 million cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 91
Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 77
Natural gas - imports:
720 million cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 57
Natural gas - proved reserves:
5.663 billion cu m (1 January 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 90
Current account balance:
-$210 million (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 89
$184 million (2009 est.)
$1.682 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 135
$1.726 billion (2009 est.)
Exports - commodities:
cotton, wool, meat, tobacco; gold, mercury, uranium, natural gas, hydropower; machinery; shoes
Exports - partners:
Switzerland 25.96%, Russia 25.88%, Uzbekistan 15.72%, Kazakhstan 12.47% (2009)
$3.075 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 139
$2.987 billion (2009 est.)
Imports - commodities:
oil and gas, machinery and equipment, chemicals, foodstuffs
Imports - partners:
China 57.03%, Russia 19.34%, Kazakhstan 5.9% (2009)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$1.615 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 103
$1.585 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
Debt - external:
$3.738 billion (30 June 2010)
country comparison to the world: 119
$3.467 billion (31 December 2008)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
$NA (31 December 2009 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:
Exchange rates:
soms (KGS) per US dollar - 46.337 (2010), 42.905 (2009), 36.108 (2008), 37.746 (2007), 40.149 (2006)
Communications :: Kyrgyzstan
Telephones - main lines in use:
498,300 (2009)
country comparison to the world: 97
Telephones - mobile cellular:
4.487 million (2009)
country comparison to the world: 100
Telephone system:
general assessment: telecommunications infrastructure is being upgraded; loans from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) are being used to install a digital network, digital radio-relay stations, and fiber-optic links
domestic: fixed-line penetration remains low and concentrated in urban areas; multiple mobile-cellular service providers with growing coverage; mobile-cellular subscribership exceeded 80 per 100 persons in 2009
international: country code - 996; connections with other CIS countries by landline or microwave radio relay and with other countries by leased connections with Moscow international gateway switch and by satellite; satellite earth stations - 2 (1 Intersputnik, 1 Intelsat); connected internationally by the Trans-Asia-Europe (TAE) fiber-optic line
Broadcast media:
state-run television broadcaster operates 2 nationwide networks and 6 regional stations; roughly 20 private TV stations operating with most rebroadcasting other channels; state-run radio broadcaster operates 2 networks; about 20 private radio stations operating (2007)
Internet country code:
Internet hosts:
97,976 (2010)
country comparison to the world: 78
Internet users:
2.195 million (2009)
country comparison to the world: 74
Transportation :: Kyrgyzstan
28 (2010)
country comparison to the world: 119
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 18
over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 3
1,524 to 2,437 m: 11
under 914 m: 3 (2010)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 10
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1
under 914 m: 8 (2010)
gas 254 km; oil 16 km (2009)
total: 470 km
country comparison to the world: 115
broad gauge: 470 km 1.520-m gauge (2008)
total: 18,500 km
country comparison to the world: 115
paved: 16,909 km (includes 140 km of expressways)
unpaved: 1,591 km (2003)
600 km (2010)
country comparison to the world: 79
Ports and terminals:
Balykchy (Ysyk-Kol or Rybach'ye)
Military :: Kyrgyzstan
Military branches:
Ground Forces, Air Force (includes Air Defense Forces), National Guard (2010)
Military service age and obligation:
18 years of age for compulsory male military service in the armed forces or Interior Ministry; service obligation 1 year; women may volunteer at age 19; 16-17 years of age for military cadets, who cannot take part in military operations (2010)
Manpower available for military service:
males age 16-49: 1,439,750
females age 16-49: 1,455,806 (2010 est.)
Manpower fit for military service:
males age 16-49: 1,101,709
females age 16-49: 1,243,904 (2010 est.)
Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
male: 56,269
female: 54,004 (2010 est.)
Military expenditures:
0.5% of GDP (2009)
country comparison to the world: 162
Transnational Issues :: Kyrgyzstan
Disputes - international:
Kyrgyzstan has yet to ratify the 2001 boundary delimitation with Kazakhstan; disputes in Isfara Valley delay completion of delimitation with Tajikistan; delimitation of 130 km of border with Uzbekistan is hampered by serious disputes around enclaves and other areas
Illicit drugs:
limited illicit cultivation of cannabis and opium poppy for CIS markets; limited government eradication of illicit crops; transit point for Southwest Asian narcotics bound for Russia and the rest of Europe; major consumer of opiates

Credits: CIA World Factbook

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