Astrakhan region overview
Astrakhan oblast (region) (also spelled Astrahan, Astrakhanskaya) is a federal subject of the Russian Federation, part of Southern Federal District. The administrative center and capital is Astrakhan city.
The region is situated in Caspian lowland where the Volga River flows into the Caspian Sea. The largest part of Astrakhan region is occupied by semi-deserts.
Astrakhan region population is about 1,014,000 (2012); land area - 49,024 sq. km.
Astrakhan region territory features
Astrakhan region is located in south-east of East-European plain within Prikaspian lowland in the districts of deserts and half-deserts which are used mainly as pastures.
The region stretches over 400 km in the form of a narrow stripe on both sides of Volga-Akhtubinsk flood-lands. Flooded for a long time lands of the delta serve as spawning-ground for important marketable fishes - sturgeon, stellate sturgeon, white sturgeon and others.
The Caspian Sea is 27 meters below sea level and so is the nearby territory of Astrakhan region, to the north the height is increasing to 15-20 meters above sea level, the highest point (mount) is located in the north-east of the region (161.9 meters).
Natural resources of the region are natural gas, salt, gyps. Astrakhan province deposits of oil can be estimated approximately 300 billion tons.
Astrakhan region views
Astrakhan region history
Russian Tsar Peter the Great founded Astrakhan guberniya in 1717. It was southwestern border of the Russian state and was also called Astrakhan krai.
That time is included Kalmyk and Kyrgyz steppes. Astrakhan region geography has been changed several times since 1919. The current borders of the region were assumed in 1957.
Astrakhan region people
Astrakhan region dominating nationalities are Russians (70%), Kazakh (14%) and Tatar (7%). The major religion is Orthodox Christianity.
Also the Muslim minority constitutes about 20% of the region population. Astrakhan province is historically a place where Kazakh and Tatar people resided. This is the largest Kazakh community in Russia.
Main cities of the region are Astrakhan, Akhtubinsk, Znamensk, Harabali.
Astrakhan region economics
Fuel industry is the main industry in the region, as there is Astrakhan gas condensate deposit, the largest in Russia. Astrakhan gas plant uses this deposit as its base. It produces gas for cars, diesel and boiler fuel. Machine-building is developed (shipbuilding, forge and press equipment, compressors etc.).
Astrakhan city is the largest center of shipbuilding and ship repairing.
Agriculture of the region includes crops, vegetables growing (tomatoes), water-melon plantation. Sheep-breeding is also well developed.