The Republic of Uzbekistan, a comparatively small (447,400 sq km) but densely populated lowland country, is conveniently situated between the great Asian rivers – the Amudarya and Syrdarya, and is bordered by Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Afghanistan.
Uzbekistan’s nature represents an amazing variety of landscapes: the coastline of the Aral Sea gives place to the Kyzylkum Desert, the subtropical Surkhandarya oasis is bordered by the Pamirs mountain ridges, the fertile Fergana Valley is shut off by the Tien Shan foothills.
The population of the country is estimated at 30,280,000 (2015).
After having declared its independence in 1991, Uzbekistan have underwent a dynamic economic development. The agricultural sector is the largest employer. Uzbekistan is one of the world’s largest cotton producers. Other agricultural products include grain, vegetables, grapes, melons and tobacco. Livestock is reared.
Uzbekistan’s industries are supported by rich resources. Major exports are oil, natural gas and gold. There are also supplies of coal, silver, copper, lead, zinc, molybdenum, tungsten, and uranium.
Industries include chemicals, metallurgy, machine building, textiles and food processing. Uzbekistan is one of the world’s leaders in gold mining.
Tourism is a priority for development and the government is keen to promote investment in tourist facilities. For centuries the land of the present-day Uzbekistan was the junction and the centre of an ancient caravan road which stretched from the Mediterranean Sea to the Pacific Ocean. More than four thousand ancient monuments are known to be located on the territory of Uzbekistan. The Fabled cities of Samarkand, Bukhara, Khiva, and Shakhrisabz, have been recognized by UNESCO as historical and architectural monuments of world importance.
Since 1991 the head of State is President Islam Karimov.