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CIA Seal  World Factbook Seal Kyrgyzstan
Flag of Kyrgyzstan
Map of Kyrgyzstan
Introduction Kyrgyzstan
A Central Asian country of incredible natural beauty and proud nomadic traditions, Kyrgyzstan was annexed by Russia in 1864; it achieved independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. Nationwide demonstrations in the spring of 2005 resulted in the ouster of President Askar AKAYEV, who had run the country since 1990. Subsequent presidential elections in July 2005 were won overwhelmingly by former prime minister Kurmanbek BAKIYEV. The political opposition organized demonstrations in Bishkek in in April, May, and November 2006 resulting in the adoption of new constitution that transfered some of the president's powers to parliament and the government. Current concerns include: privatization of state-owned enterprises, expansion of democracy and political freedoms, reduction of corruption, improving interethnic relations, and combating terrorism.
Geography Kyrgyzstan
Central Asia, west of China
Geographic coordinates:
41 00 N, 75 00 E
Map references:
total: 198,500 sq km
land: 191,300 sq km
water: 7,200 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly smaller than South Dakota
Land boundaries:
total: 3,878 km
border countries: China 858 km, Kazakhstan 1,051 km, Tajikistan 870 km, Uzbekistan 1,099 km
0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims:
none (landlocked)
dry continental to polar in high Tien Shan; 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)
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
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note:
landlocked; entirely mountainous, dominated by the Tien Shan range; many tall peaks, glaciers, and high-altitude lakes
People Kyrgyzstan
5,213,898 (July 2006 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 30.9% (male 821,976/female 789,687)
15-64 years: 62.9% (male 1,607,396/female 1,669,612)
65 years and over: 6.2% (male 126,847/female 198,380) (2006 est.)
Median age:
total: 23.6 years
male: 22.8 years
female: 24.5 years (2006 est.)
Population growth rate:
1.32% (2006 est.)
Birth rate:
22.8 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Death rate:
7.08 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Net migration rate:
-2.5 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.05 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 (2006 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: 34.49 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 39.72 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 28.98 deaths/1,000 live births (2006 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 68.49 years
male: 64.48 years
female: 72.7 years (2006 est.)
Total fertility rate:
2.69 children born/woman (2006 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
less than 0.1% (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
3,900 (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
less than 200 (2003 est.)
noun: Kyrgyzstani(s)
adjective: Kyrgyzstani
Ethnic groups:
Kyrgyz 64.9%, Uzbek 13.8%, Russian 12.5%, Dungan 1.1%, Ukrainian 1%, Uygur 1%, other 5.7% (1999 census)
Muslim 75%, Russian Orthodox 20%, other 5%
Kyrgyz (official), Russian (official)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 98.7%
male: 99.3%
female: 98.1% (1999 est.)
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 54 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 Soviet Union)
National holiday:
Independence Day, 31 August (1991)
adopted 5 May 1993; note - amendment proposed by President Askar AKAYEV and passed in a national referendum on 2 February 2003 significantly expanded the powers of the president at the expense of the legislature; during large-scale demonstrations in November 2006, President BAKIYEV and the opposition negotiated a new constitution granting greater powers to the parliament and the government
Legal system:
based on civil law system
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: President Kurmanbek BAKIYEV (since 14 August 2005)
head of government: Prime Minister Feliks KULOV (since 1 September 2005); First Deputy Prime Minister Daniyar USENOV (since 10 May 2006)
cabinet: Cabinet of Ministers appointed by the president on the recommendation of the prime minister; note - the new constitution of November 2006 calls for the legislature to appoint the prime minister and members of the Cabinet after the elections of 2010
elections: Kurmanbek BAKIYEV elected by popular vote for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held 10 July 2005 (next scheduled for 2010); prime minister nominated by the president for approval by Parliament; note - the new constitution of November 2006 calls for the legislature to appoint the prime minister and members of the Cabinet after the elections of 2010
election results: Kurmanbek BAKIYEV elected president; percent of vote - Kurmanbek BAKIYEV 88.6%, Tursunbai BAKIR-UULU 3.9%, other candidates 7.5%; Feliks KULOV approved as prime minister 55-8
Legislative branch:
unicameral Supreme Council or Jorgorku Kenesh (75 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five year terms); note - the November 2006 constitution calls for 90 seats
elections: elections for the new unicameral body or Jorgorku Kenesh were held 27 February 2005, but the vast majority of positions remained undecided and were contested in a runoff election on 13 March 2005; election irregularities caused widespread protests that resulted in the president being forced to flee the country
election results: Supreme Council - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA
Judicial branch:
Supreme Court; Constitutional Court (judges of both the Supreme and Constitutional Courts are appointed for 10-year terms by the Jorgorku Kenesh on the recommendation of the president); 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 [Emil ALIYEV]; Asaba (Banner National Revival Party) [Azimbek BEKNAZAROV and Roza OTUNBAYEVA]; Ata-Meken (Fatherland) [Omurbek TEKEBAYEV]; Democratic Movement of Kyrgyzstan or DDK [Viktor TCHETRNOMORETS]; Erkindik (Freedom) Party [Topchubek TURGUNALIYEV]; Moya Strana (My Country Party of Action) [Medet SADYRKULOV]; Party of Communists of Kyrgyzstan or KCP [Ishak MASALIYEV]; Party of Justice and Progress [Muratbek IMANALIEV]; Party of Peasants [Esengul ISAKOV]; Republican Party of Labor and Unity [Tabaldy OROZALIYEV]; Sanjira (Tree of Life) [Ednan KARABAYEV]; Social Democratic Party [Almaz ATAMBAYEV]; Sodruzhestvo (Cooperation) [Alisher SABIROV]; Union of Democratic Forces [Kubatbek BAIBOLOV]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Adilet Legal Clinic [Cholpon JAKUPOVA]; Coalition for Democracy and Civil Society [Edil BAISALOV]; For Reforms [Omurbek TEKEBAYEV and Almazbek ATAMBAYEV]; Interbilim [Asiya SASYKBAYEVA]
International organization participation:
Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Zamira SYDYKOVA
chancery: 2360 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 338-5141
FAX: [1] (202) 386-7550
consulate(s): New York
Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Marie L. YOVANOVITCH
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 the roof of the traditional Kyrgyz yurt
Economy Kyrgyzstan
Economy - overview:
Kyrgyzstan is a poor, mountainous country with a predominantly agricultural economy. 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. Following independence Kyrgyzstan was progressive in carrying out market reforms, such as an improved regulatory system and land reform, but political instability during 2005-06 has undercut the investment climate. Kyrgyzstan was the first 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. The economy is heavily weighted toward gold export and a drop in output at the main Kumtor gold mine sparked a 0.5% decline in GDP in 2002, but GDP growth bounced back the following year. In 2005 Kyrgyzstan again experienced a decline in GDP, this time 0.6%. The government has made steady strides in controlling its substantial fiscal deficit, virtually balancing revenues and expenditures in 2006. The government and international financial institutions have been engaged in a comprehensive medium-term poverty reduction and economic growth strategy; in 2005 Bishkek agreed to pursue much-needed tax reform and in 2006 became eligible for the heavily indebted poor countries (HIPC) initiative. Progress fighting corruption, further restructuring of domestic industry, and success in attracting foreign investment are keys to future growth.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$10.49 billion (2006 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate):
$2.24 billion (2006 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
2% (2006 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):
$2,000 (2006 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 34.5%
industry: 19.5%
services: 46.1% (2006 est.)
Labor force:
2.7 million (2000)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 55%
industry: 15%
services: 30% (2000 est.)
Unemployment rate:
18% (2004 est.)
Population below poverty line:
40% (2004 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 3.9%
highest 10%: 23.3% (2001)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
29 (2001)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
6.4% (2006 est.)
Investment (gross fixed):
15.5% of GDP (2006 est.)
revenues: $498.3 million
expenditures: $544.8 million; including capital expenditures of $NA (2006 est.)
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:
-4.5% (2006 est.)
Electricity - production:
14.06 billion kWh (2004)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 7.6%
hydro: 92.4%
nuclear: 0%
other: 0% (2001)
Electricity - consumption:
6.777 billion kWh (2004)
Electricity - exports:
6.4 billion kWh (2004)
Electricity - imports:
100 million kWh (2004)
Oil - production:
1,378 bbl/day (2004)
Oil - consumption:
10,000 bbl/day (2004 est.)
Oil - exports:
NA bbl/day (2001)
Oil - imports:
NA bbl/day (2001)
Natural gas - production:
29 million cu m (2004 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
919 million cu m (2004 est.)
Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2004 est.)
Natural gas - imports:
890 million cu m (2004 est.)
Current account balance:
$-287.3 million (2006 est.)
$701.8 million f.o.b. (2006 est.)
Exports - commodities:
cotton, wool, meat, tobacco; gold, mercury, uranium, natural gas, hydropower; machinery; shoes
Exports - partners:
UAE 35.6%, Russia 18.6%, China 13.4%, Kazakhstan 13% (2005)
$1.177 billion f.o.b. (2006 est.)
Imports - commodities:
oil and gas, machinery and equipment, chemicals, foodstuffs
Imports - partners:
China 43%, Russia 19.7%, Kazakhstan 12.1%, Turkey 4.4% (2005)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$621.2 million (2006 est.)
Debt - external:
$2.483 billion (30 June 2006 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
$50 million from the US (2001)
Currency (code):
som (KGS)
Currency code:
Exchange rates:
soms per US dollar - 40.673 (2006), 41.012 (2005), 42.65 (2004), 43.648 (2003), 46.937 (2002)
Fiscal year:
calendar year
Communications Kyrgyzstan
Telephones - main lines in use:
438,200 (2005)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
541,700 (2005)
Telephone system:
general assessment: development of telecommunications infrastructure is slow; fixed line penetration remains low and concentrated in Bishkek
domestic: two wireless telephony service providers, but penetration remains low
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 - 1 Intersputnik and 1 Intelsat; connected internationally by the Trans-Asia-Europe (TAE) fiber-optic line
Radio broadcast stations:
AM 12 (plus 10 repeater stations), FM 14, shortwave 2 (1998)
520,000 (1997)
Television broadcast stations:
NA (repeater stations throughout the country relay programs from Russia, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and Turkey) (1997)
210,000 (1997)
Internet country code:
Internet hosts:
18,928 (2006)
Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
Internet users:
280,000 (2005)
Transportation Kyrgyzstan
37 (2006)
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 (2006)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 19
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 1
under 914 m: 16 (2006)
gas 254 km; oil 16 km (2006)
total: 470 km
broad gauge: 470 km 1.520-m gauge (2005)
total: 18,500 km
paved: 16,854 km
unpaved: 1,646 km (1999)
600 km (2006)
Ports and terminals:
Balykchy (Ysyk-Kol or Rybach'ye)
Military Kyrgyzstan
Military branches:
Army, Air Force, National Guard (2005)
Military service age and obligation:
18 years of age for compulsory military service (2001)
Manpower available for military service:
males age 18-49: 1,193,529
females age 18-49: 1,219,080 (2005 est.)
Manpower fit for military service:
males age 18-49: 871,493
females age 18-49: 1,024,568 (2005 est.)
Manpower reaching military service age annually:
males age 18-49: 61,091
females age 18-49: 59,784 (2005 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
$19.2 million (FY01)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
1.4% (FY01)
Transnational Issues Kyrgyzstan
Disputes - international:
delimitation with Kazakhstan is complete; 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

This page was last updated on 18 January, 2007