turkmenistanTurkmenistan is a Central Asian country, also known as Turkmenia, located on the 1,099-mile long eastern shore of the Caspian Sea. The population is about five million, which makes it the least populated country among the former Soviet republics in the region. Turkmenistan’s capital is Ashgabat. The country is rich in natural gas, oil and coal as well as in rare metals and minerals. Turkmenistan is administratively divided into five provinces (welayatlar), which are sub-divided into districts (etraplar).

Context

Context

The topography of Turkmenistan is mostly flat to rolling sandy desert, with mountains in the south. The extremely dry Karakum Desert covers over 80 percent of the country and is bound by a series of oases watered by a number of rivers. The climate is mostly arid subtropical desert type, with scant rainfall. Temperatures remain very high in some cities.

Turkmenistan is an arid country, and about 96 percent of its agricultural land is desert pasture. Whatever little land is left for cultivation, it is under irrigated agriculture. According to an FAO 2012 report, the agricultural sector represents only 19 percent of GDP in Turkmenistan. Although agricultural reforms involving distribution of land to individual farms and restructuring of large collective farms have been adopted the state still exercises substantial control over the agricultural sector. Peasant associations comprising individual agricultural producers, leaseholders, household plots, and daikhan farms control about 70 percent of the total land area. About 20 percent of the land is under state reserve while the remaining 10 percent is used by non-agricultural operators. The main export crop is cotton, grown on more than half of the cultivable land. Other crops and fruits are wheat, vegetables (potatoes, tomatoes and garlic), sugarcane, apple, dates, pear, alycha, silverberry, apricot, walnut, pistachio, and figs. Silk production (sericulture) is also common. Among livestock, rearing of karakul sheep is widely popular while other animals include cattle, goats, chickens, horses and camel.

Some of the multilateral and bilateral donors that have provided or are providing financial and technical assistance to Turkmenistan are the World Bank, UNDP, FAO, EBRD (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development), USAID, ADB (Asian Development Bank), Japan, Turkey and Germany.

Key Statistics and Indicators

Indicator

Value

Year  

Agricultural land (sq km)

Agricultural land (% of land area)

Arable land (hectares)

Arable land (% of land area)

Arable land (hectares per person)

326,600

69.49

1,900,000

4.04

0.37

2011

2011

2011

2011

2011

Fertilizer consumption (kg per hectare of arable land)

N.A.

 

Agriculture, value added (% of GDP)

Food production index (2004-2006 = 100)

Food exports (% of merchandise exports)

Food imports (% of merchandise imports)

14.54

122.62

0.29

11.71

2011

2011

2000

2000

GNI per capita, Atlas method (current US$)

4,800

2011

Literacy rate, adult total (% of people ages 15 and above)

Literacy rate, youth female (% of females ages 15-24)

Literacy rate, youth male (% of males ages 15-24)

Ratio of young literate females to males (% ages 15-24)

Ratio of female to male secondary enrollment (%)

99.58

99.88

99.77

100.11

N.A.

2010

2010

2010

2010

Mobile cellular subscriptions (per 100 people)

Internet users (per 100 people)

68.77

5

2011

2011

Population, total

Population density (people per sq. km of land area)

Rural population

Rural population (% of total population)

Agricultural population (% of total population)

Total economically active population

Total economically active population in agriculture

Total economically active population in agriculture (in %

    of total economically active population)

Female economically active population in agriculture (% of

     total economically active population in agriculture)*

5,105,301

10.86

2,616,895

51.25

N.A.

2,208,215

704,000

31.88

53

2011

2011

2011

2011

2011

2008

2011

2011

Sources: The World Bank; *The Crucial Role of Women in Agriculture and Rural Development (theme of the 37th FAO Conference). Gender Team, Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations; Regional Informal Consultation, Budapest, 3 March 2011)

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Acknowledgements

  • Authored by M. Kalim Qamar (July 2013)
  • Edited by Burton E. Swanson

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