Population : 600,000
Latitude : 38.35 °N
Longitude : 68.48 °W
Ethnicity : Tajik, Uzbek, Russian, Kyrgyz
Universities : Tajik State University, Pedagogical Institute, Avicenna Medical University
Area : 55,300 sq. miles
Topography : 93% mountainous
Moutain Range : Pamir Range
Highest Peak : Pk. Ismail Samani 24,590 ft.
Rivers : Syr Darya, Amu Darya, Vakhsh
Industries : mining, machine, cotton milling, tools
Agriculture : cotton, maize, fruit, sheep, silkworms
Dushanbe is located in the Central Asian country of Tajikistan backed by the Pamir Mountains.
Tajikistan is about the size of the part of Colorado plains that lie east of the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains, but its topography is more like that of the western part of the state. It is nearly all (93%) mountainous, with peaks rising well above 20,000 feet, with some rising higher than 23,000 feet. Like Colorado, gushing rivers come down to the dry plains. The Tajik climate has been compared to that of New Mexico—dry and hot in the summer, dry and cold in the winter. Tajikistan’s population is more than 6 million.
With much hope for its future, Tajikistan is a country overcoming many problems with a strong, wonderful, and determined people. The aftermath of the collapse of the Soviet Union left Tajikistan with the lowest per capita Gross Domestic Product (GDP) among the 15 former Soviet republics. Economic problems, drought and civil war have hampered Tajikistan’s efforts to develop, modernize, and maintain a civil, democratic, and secular society.
The good news is that civil conflicts have been resolved and the risk of resumption of the civil war is relatively low. Non-Government Organizations are monitoring elections and educating the population on the process of building a civil society. What they lack in educational and commercial resources, Tajikistan’s people make up for in hard work and resourcefulness.
Cotton is the most important crop. Mineral resources, varied but limited in amount, include silver, gold, uranium, and tungsten. Industry consists only of a large aluminum plant, hydropower facilities, and small obsolete factories mostly in light industry and food processing. The Tajik economy has been gravely weakened by the civil conflict and by the loss of subsidies from Moscow and of markets for its products. Most of its people live in abject poverty. Tajikistan depends on aid from Russia and Uzbekistan, and on international humanitarian assistance for much of its basic subsistence needs. The future of Tajikistan’s economy and the potential for attracting foreign investment depend upon international and regional support.
Dushanbe, called Stalinabad from 1929 to 1961, is the capital of Tajikistan and its most populous city. It is located in the Hisor valley at an average altitude of approximately 2500 feet, on the Varzob River. According to tradition, the name Dushanbe is derived from an early practice of holding a market in the area on Mondays. In Central Asia and the Middle East, it was the custom for some towns and villages to hold their markets on one day per week.
Only minimal Internet connectivity is available in Dushanbe and a nascent Internet Service Provider business environment is growing slowly. Efforts are now focused on find legislative and regulatory ways to encourage greater Internet adoption.
There are a number of institutions of higher education and culture in Dushanbe, including:
- Tajikistan State University
- State Pedagogical University
- State Medical University
- State Polytechnic University
- State Agricultural University
- The Tajik Academy of Sciences
- The Ferdowsi National Library
- The Technological University
- Other institutions for the study of art, physical culture
A symphony orchestra, an opera company, a ballet company, a youth theater and a puppet theater are among the organization representing the performing arts.