Bialystok Province

Białystok Province

 

(Województwo Białostockie), an administrative unit in northeastern Poland. Area, 23,100 sq km; population, 1,184,000 (1968). The administrative center and most important city is Bialystok. The greater part of Białystok Province is located within the flat, marshy Podlasie Depression; to the north is the eastern part of the hilly morainic ridge of the Pojezierze Mazurskie (Mazurian Lake Region; maximum elevation, 309 m), with its numerous lakes. Białystok Province has a dense network of rivers, belonging chiefly to the basins of the Wisła and Neman. There are coniferous and broad-leaved forests, which are extremely marshy in places.

Białystok Province is a primarily agricultural region with developing industry. Agriculture occupies 64 percent of the land area, including the 44 percent under tillage. Forests—including the Białowieza and Augustów forests—occupy 27 percent of the land area. There is a large lumber industry (1.1 million cubic meters in 1967). The chief crops sown are rye (one-third of tilled area), potatoes (about one-fifth), and oats (one-sixth); Białystok Province is the top-ranking producer of oats and flax in Poland. Animal husbandry is oriented to milk and meat production: cattle (390,000 cows out of a total of 679,000 head in 1967), pigs (1,134,000), and sheep (308,000).

The textile industry accounts for over one-fourth of industrial employees. There are old cloth mills in Białystok and its environs and new cotton mills in Białystok and Zambrów. Other industry consists of food processing, woodworking, and machine building; there is a wood chemical plant in Haj-nówka.

IU. V. ILINICH

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