Name of the Country:
Abkhazia – Apsny Akhuntkarra (Abkh.)
Brief name: Abkhazia, Apsny (Abkh.)
Capital: Sukhum – Akua (Abk.)-2500 years old.
The language is Abkhazian language. Russian is the language of state and other agencies.
Abkhazian belongs to the Abkhaz-Adyg group. The writing is based on the Cyrillic alphabet.
Nationality – Abkhaz(ians)
Population size: 240 705 people.
Ethnic groups: Abkhazians- 50,71%, Armenians- 17,39%, Russians- 9,17%, Georgians- 17,93%.
Townspeople: 121 334 people.
Rural population: 119 371 people.
Abkhazia is situated on the Northwestern coast of the Black Sea between Russia and Georgia, on the divide between Europe and Asia.
Coordinates: 43°01'00» latitude 41°02'00" longitude.
Total area: 8.700km²
Land boundary: 418km
Time zone: MSK (UTC + 4)
The climate is humid and subtropical. The average temperature in January at the shore is from +4 to +7С, in the mountains from +2 to -2 С, in July from +22 to +24C, with 1300-2400 mm of precipitation per year.
7 districts: Gagra, Gudauta, Sukhum, Gulripsh, Ochamchira, Tkuarchal and Gal.
Educational level: 98.6%
Compulsory secondary education is 11 years.
The central board of education is the Ministry of Education of Abkhazia. Abkhazian State University is the main institute of higher education. The education is both in Abkhazian and Russian languages.
Abkhazia is a country of early Christianity, which first came to Abkhazia in the middle of the I-st century. Three of the twelve Disciples of Christ (St. Andrew the First-Called, the Apostle Simon the Zealot and the John Chrysostom) preached in Abkhazia. Pitiunt (Pitsunda) was the first focus of Christianity in the Caucasus and the center of its further spread. At the beginning of the IV century, the first Abkhazian Church appeared in Pitsunda, and in the mid-8th century the independent Orthodox Church was already here. Today, Abkhazia is a Christian country; about 70% of its population are Orthodox Christians, 16% Muslim`s, 4% Catholics, 5% Pagans, 2% Jews, and 3% of other religions.
Abkhazia – Apsny (in translation from Abkhazian is the Country of heart and soul). Abkhazia is country with a rich and aincient history.
The Abkhazian Kingdom existed here from VIII century, originally headed by Leon II. The native population of Abkhazia are Abkhazians- one of the ancient people of the world. Like any small nation, Abkhazians during its history has had to fight with large countries for the preservation of its national identity, culture, language, statehood and physical existence.
As a result of the Caucasian War Abkhazians had to leave their land and move to other countries. Today, approximately more than 1 million Abkhazians are outside their homeland, most of them (about 700 thousand people) in Turkey.
And far away from the home to, the bulk (about 700tys.chel) live in Turkey.
The collapse of the Soviet Union led to an aggravation of contradictions between Georgia and Abkhazia which resulted in war (1992-1993). Abkhazia won the war and ousted Georgian troops, declaring its independence in 1993 and constitution in 1994.
Form of governence:
The leadership of Abkhazia belongs to the President, elected every 5 years. The legislative power is presented by the National Assembly - Parliament of Abkhazia consists of 35 deputies elected for 5 years. The head of the executive power is the President.
The war with Georgia in 1992-1993 damaged the economy of Abkhazia with loss of about $13 billion. The subsequent economic embargo and pressure lasted until 2000. Only after the reversal of a blockade did Abkhazia take its first steps in developing. Today, the economy of Abkhazia has reached a path of strong, progressive economic growth. Transport, communications and industry are all developing.
Abkhazia is a popular health-resort and recreation center. In Soviet times, Abkhazia was a prestigious destination. Its unique nature, culture and historical sights attract tourists' attention. Tourism is growing significantly. The average number of visitors is over 1 million people per year.
Over 70 resorts are functioning here.
Agriculture is the fundamental economic sphere of Abkhazia. An area of 421.6 ha is intended for agriculture. The unique climate conditions of Abkhazia are favourable for the growing of exotic, subtropical fruits: citrus fruits (mandarin, orange, and lemon); feijoa, kiwi, tea, tobacco, walnut, tung and others. Moreover, in Abkhazia corn, grape and vegetables are traditionally grown; the livestock sector is developing. Today, a lot of measures are being taken to restore all these sectors. Grape, tea, tobacco, citrus plantations, areas for planting kiwi, fish and poultry farms are being prepared and restored. Building of various processing factories for the further realization of products both for Abkhazia and for export to other countries are being planned.
A number of industries of Abkhazia have an export potential: coal, hydropower, construction materials, wood processing, and food processing. In recent years, the volume of industrial output increased almost by five times, and the basic share of it makes is made up by processing industries. Small wine production factories are working and produce about 30 varieties of vodka, brandy, and liqueurs. The production of building materials, timber and wood-working production occupy second place.
Abkhazia supplies Sochi city with sand and crushed stone for the construction of Olympic venues.
The main exported material resources are inert rubble, sand and gravel mixture. Explored reserves contain more than 100 million m3 of inert materials.
State Banks: The State National Bank, “Savings Bank of Abkhazia”
Commercial banks: 16
Currency: Russian Ruble (RUB)
The total length of the railways is 221km. This railway stretches across the whole country from the river Psou (the Abkhaz-Russian border) to the river Ingur (Abkhaz-Georgian border) along the Black Sea coast, and there is also a branch of 26 km, from Ochamchira to Tkuarchal.
The main form of transport in Abkhazia is the automobile. the length of highway is 200 km, of category-II (Psou-Ingur).
Download navigator map: www.abkhazia.travel/navigate
Sukhum Ardzinba airport is the international airport of Abkhazia, and Abkhaz airlines are based there. A coast-guard station and customs also work there. For a long time the airport was in poor condition and in need of major repairs. In 2011, the airport was partially renovated and is preparing to resume flights. The airport can operate year-round, taking aircraft in any weather conditions. The length of the runway is 3.6 km. Landing and takeoff is possible from 2 directions. The airfield is of Class A 2. The airport can take any aircraft without payload restrictions, which meets international standards.
Bambora is one of the largest military airfields of the South Caucasus. Its runway length is 4 km. The airfield may receive all types of jets and military transport planes.
Unpaved airfields: Pskhu, Pitsunda.
Three main sea ports:
· Sukhum- the main port of Abkhazia, a passenger port. Type of port-open. Sukhum port can take ships of 5,000 tons' displacement.
· Ochamchira- cargo port, open port.
· Pitsunda- passenger- cargo port. Type of port-open.
Today, all these ports have established a regular cargo service. Sea ways: Sukhum-Sochi: 142km, Sukhum-Istanbul: 1028km, Sukhum-Trabzon: 245km, Sukhum-Samsun: 418km.
Main electric energy producer is Ingur Hydroelectric Power Station.
Most of the electricity comes from hydropower Ingur, and of that 50% goes to Georgia, 50% to Abkhazia. Power-1370MVt, production is about 3.2 billion kWh (capacity up to 4.5 billion kWh per year).
- lines 220 – 110 - 35 kilovolt – 940 km
- lines 10 – 0,4 kilovolt – 7,584 km
The general energy consumption of Abkhazia is 1140 million kilowatt-hours annually.
THE CONCEPT OF THE SOCIAL-ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT of Abkhazia defines the strategy and the main directions of the state policy in solving problems in the social-economic sphere of life. This conception proceeds from the interests of all the citizens of Abkhazia and is aimed at creation conditions for everybody to realize their knowledge and abilities to provide decent standards of living for themselves, their family and the community at large.
This conception reflects the resolution and wishes of the leadership of Abkhazia to take responsibility for the present and future economic development of the country.
In the process of building of the developed market system, there are a number of first priority measures:
-improvement of living conditions and social protection of all the citizens
-development of the Abkhazian people
The developing of a national social-economic model has to cater for improvement of the quality of education, culture and health care, and also strengthen environmental security. Reforms and conversions don't have to destroy the centuries-old culture of Abkhaz people; on the contrary, reforms should promote the achievement of harmony between the market values and national colour, as many other countries has demonstrated.
The propaganda of a healthy life style, with the development of physical training and sport, is the most important state duty. Abkhazia pays much attention to stadiums, sport grounds, gymnasiums and rehabilitation programs in order to encourage all the young people of Abkhazia to take up sport.
Mountains cover 64% of the territory - the Greater Caucasus, Bzyb, Gagra, Chkhalta, Kodor range and its spurs. Maximum height is 4046m (Dombay-Ulgen). In the south are territories of hills and lowlands.
Karst caves: "Novy Aphon" and "Snezhnaya", plus a cave-abyss on the ridge of “Arbaika”, which is the deepest cave in the world (1860 m)
Rivers: Psou, Bzyb, Gumista, Kodor, Aldzga, Ingur etc. Lakes - Ritza, Amtkel, Inkit, Blue Lake, Bebeisir. The mountainous podzol is red or yellow.
Forests cover more than 55% of the area (oak, beech, hornbeam, chestnut, fir, spruce). On the coast there is sub-tropical vegetation.
In Abkhazia, there are mineral, land, water, forest, and recreational resources.
Mineral resources - coal, peat, dolomite, marble, limestone and marble, granite, sand, gravel, limestone, gabbro-diabase, chalk, travertine, oil, peat, barite, lead, brick and tile clay, mineral paints, gravel and stone, and cement raw materials.
Land resources. The total area is 866.4 hectares. 421.6 hectares of it belongs to the agricultural lands. Natural and climatic conditions are favourablre for development of subtropical agriculture here.
For water supply the territory of Abkhazia is in first place throughout the world. From one square kilometer there are more than 1.7 million cubic meters of runoff per year. Efficient use of hydro, solar, wind and marine energy can provide the energy security of our country. Abkhazia could become a serious exporter of clean drinking mineral water, the costs of which is growing every year.
Forest resources. The total volume of timber is estimated 103 million cubic meters. Forests cover more than 55% of the country.
The flora of Abkhazia includes more than 3,500 species of plants. 180 species of these are arboreal and shrub, others are herbaceous. About 400 species are endemic Caucasian, and more than 100 species are found only in Abkhazia.