Turkmenistan

Map

Turkmenistan Terrain: flat-to-rolling sandy desert with dunes rising to mountains in the south; low mountains along border with Iran; borders Caspian Sea in west;

Natural Resources: petroleum, natural gas, sulfur, salt;

Natural Hazards: NA;

Population: 5,113,040 (July 2013 est.)

Factbook

Quick Facts About Turkmenistan

Population

4,940,916 (July 2010 est.)

Age Structure

0-14 years: 28.2% (male 703,941/female 687,335)
15-64 years: 67.7% (male 1,657,903/female 1,687,725)
65 years and over: 4.1% (male 88,520/female 115,492) (2010 est.)

Religions

Muslim 89%, Eastern Orthodox 9%, unknown 2%

Languages

Turkmen (official) 72%, Russian 12%, Uzbek 9%, other 7%

Internet Users

75,000 (2008)

Country Name

conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Turkmenistan
local long form: none
local short form: Turkmenistan
former: Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic

Government Type

defines itself as a secular democracy and a presidential republic; in actuality displays authoritarian presidential rule, with power concentrated within the executive branch

Capital

name: Ashgabat (Ashkhabad)
geographic coordinates: 37 57 N, 58 23 E
time difference: UTC+5 (10 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Military Branches

Army, Navy, Air and Air Defense Forces (2010)

Dependency Status

*

Background

Eastern Turkmenistan for centuries formed part of the Persian province of Khurasan; in medieval times Merv (today known as Mary) was one of the great cities of the Islamic world and an important stop on the Silk Road. Annexed by Russia between 1865 and 1885, Turkmenistan became a Soviet republic in 1924. It achieved independence upon the dissolution of the USSR in 1991. Extensive hydrocarbon/natural gas reserves could prove a boon to this underdeveloped country if extraction and delivery projects were to be expanded. The Turkmenistan Government is actively seeking to diversify its gas export routes beyond the existing Russian pipeline network. President for Life Saparmurat NYYAZOW died in December 2006, and Turkmenistan held its first multi-candidate presidential electoral process in February 2007. Gurbanguly BERDIMUHAMEDOW, a vice premier under NYYAZOW, emerged as the country”s new president.

Area – Comparative

slightly larger than California

Area

total: 488,100 sq km
land: 469,930 sq km
water: 18,170 sq km

Terrain

flat-to-rolling sandy desert with dunes rising to mountains in the south; low mountains along border with Iran; borders Caspian Sea in west

Climate

subtropical desert

Natural Hazards

NA