an oblast in the northeastern part of the Uzbek SSR. Formed on Jan. 15, 1938. Area, 15,600 sq km. Population, including the city of Tashkent, 3,254,000 (Jan. 1, 1975). The oblast includes 13 raions, 13 cities, and 20 urban-type settlements. Its administrative center is Tashkent. The oblast was awarded two Orders of Lenin, on Nov. 28, 1959, and Dec. 16, 1970.
Natural features. The northeastern and eastern parts of the oblast are occupied by the Chatkal, Kurama, Pskem, and Ugam mountain ranges. Most of the oblast to the south and southwest is a piedmont plain that slopes gradually toward the Syr Darya River. The oblast is in an active seismic zone. The climate is continental, with humid, relatively mild winters and long, hot, and dry summers. The mean January temperature is –1.3° to –1.8°C; the mean July temperature is 26.8°C. The average annual precipitation is 250 mm in the plains region, 350–400 mm in the piedmont region, and 500 mm in the mountains; the period of maximum precipitation occurs in the spring. There is a permanent snow cover only in the mountains. The growing season in the plains region lasts approximatley 210 days. The main rivers are the Syr Darya (its length in the oblast is approximately 125 km) and its tributaries, the Chirchik (including the Pskem) and the Akhangaran. These rivers are fed by snow and glaciers and are used for irrigation and hydroelectric power.
In the plains region of the oblast there are sierozems; in the piedmont region (to elevations of 500–600 m), sierozems are also typical. On the lower mountain slopes (to an elevation of 1,200 m) there are dark sierozems; farther up are soddy brown soils and then meadow-steppe soils. In the lower areas of the river terraces and in places where the groundwater comes close to the surface, there are meadow soils and marsh soils; in the river valleys there are alluvial soils.
The entire plains region is under cultivation, except for the banks of the Syr Darya, which have small tugai (fringing forests) consisting of various types of poplars and of other trees. In the mountains (to an elevation of 1,200–1,400 m), mountain steppes are prevalent; farther up there are sparse juniper forests. Above an elevation of 2,000 m there are subalpine and alpine meadows. In the Akhangaran Valley (in the lower belt of mountains), shrubs include honeysuckle, dog rose, and barberry.
In the plains region of the oblast, wildlife includes the suslik Citellus fluvus, jerboas, and rodents of the genus Ellobius. Reptiles include turtles of the species Agrionemys horsfieldi and lizards. In the tugai of the Syr Darya there are golden jackals and cape hares. In the piedmont and mountainous regions there are Old World porcupines, argali, chukar, and white-winged grosbeak. The fish in the rivers and reservoirs include carp, European bream, pike perch, sheatfish, and pike. In the upper reaches of the rivers there are fishes of the genus Schizothorax. The Chatkal Mountain Forest Preserve is located in the oblast.
Population. Uzbeks account for 39.9 percent of the oblast’s population (1970), and Russians account for 29.9 percent. There are also Tatars (8.9 percent), Kazakhs (6.3 percent), Koreans (3.2 percent), Ukrainians (2.2 percent), Tadzhiks (2.1 percent), and Jews (2.1 percent). As of 1975, the average population density was 208.6 persons per sq km; the population density varies from 10–20 persons per sq km in the mountainous region to 350–400 persons per sq km in the oasis region, especially around Tashkent. The oblast has the largest percentage of urban dwellers in the Uzbek republic. As of Jan. 1, 1975, the oblast had 71 percent of the republic’s urban population, or 42 percent not including Tashkent. The most important cities are Tashkent, Iangiiul’, Chirchik, Bekabad, Angren, Almalyk, and Iangiabad; all except Tashkent were founded after 1933.
Economy. Tashkent Oblast is the most industrialized oblast in Uzbekistan and is an important agricultural region with well-developed cotton cultivation, horticulture, and viticulture. In 1974 the industrial output was 28 times greater than in 1940; in the Uzbek SSR as a whole it was 12 times greater. The oblast produces more than 40 percent of the republic’s gross industrial output. Heavy industry predominates, accounting for two-thirds of the total output.
The energy base of the oblast is provided by gas, coal, and water power. In 1974, 16.1 billion kilowatt-hours of electric power were produced, or 53.7 percent of the total for the republic. The major thermal electric generating stations are the Tashkent State Regional Electric Power Plant (1,920 megawatts) and the Angren State Regional Electric Power Plant (612 megawatts). Hydroelectric power plants in operation include the Chir-chik-Bozsu Cascade Hydroelectric Power Plant. All the electric power plants are joined in a single power grid. The mining of lignite at the Angren coal field is mainly of the open-pit type; coal gas is also produced underground. In 1974, 4,509,000 tons of coal were mined. Natural gas is becoming increasingly important. It is delivered by pipelines from Dzharkak in Bukhara Oblast and from Mubarek in Kashkadar’ia Oblast.
Ferrous metallurgy is represented by the V. I. Lenin Uzbek Metallurgical Plant in Bekabad; the Vtorchermet plant was under construction in 1976. Nonferrous metallurgy is represented by such enterprises as the Almalyk Mining and Metallurgical Combine and the refractory and heat-resistant metals combine in Chirchik.
The agricultural machinery manufactured in Tashkent Oblast provides all the cotton-cultivating republics of the USSR with machinery for the comprehensive mechanization of cotton cultivation, including cotton pickers, tractors adapted for cotton cultivation, cotton seeders, cotton strippers, cotton gins, and cotton-picking machines. The machine-building plants produce aircraft, textile machinery, equipment for light industry (especially the cotton-ginning industry), hoisting and transport equipment, and excavators. The main centers for machine building are Tashkent, Chirchik, and Iangiiul’.
The chemical industry specializes in the production of mineral fertilizers for cotton cultivation. The Elektrokhimprom production association in Chirchik manufactures nitrogen fertilizers and ammonia, and the Almalyk Chemical Plant manufactures ammophos, an ammonium phosphate fertilizer. Also produced are paints and varnishes, pharmaceuticals, and rubber.
The construction-materials industry is well developed. There are large cement factories in Akhangaran, Bekabad, and Angren; ceramics combines in Tashkent and Angren; slate factories in Akhangaran and Bekabad; many brickyards; and plants producing reinforced-concrete structural members. Tashkent and Angren have housing-construction combines. There is a glass factory in Gazalkent, and stoneworking combines in Tashkent and Gazalkent.
Cotton ginning is the leading sector of light industry, with plants in Iangiiul’, Pskent, Chinaz, and Bekabad. Other light-industry enterprises are the Tashkent Textile Combine, a kenaf factory in Tashkent, and clothing, knitwear, and leather and footwear factories. Branches of the food-processing industry, including the dairy, wine, milling and hulling, confectionery, and tobacco industries, are located in Tashkent, Iangiiul’, Chirchik, Almalyk, Bekabad, and Angren.
As of November 1974, the oblast’s arable land amounted to 800,500 hectares (ha), including 376,000 ha of land under cultivation and 370,900 ha of hayfields, grazing land, and pastureland. As of late 1974 there were 118 kolkhozes and 72 sovkhozes. The total area under cultivation in 1974 was 373,400 ha, of which 277,000 ha, or 74 percent, was irrigated. Many irrigation canals have been built in the oblast, including the Bozsu, Karasu, Mar-gunenkov, Dal’varzin, and Tashkent canals. The Tiuiabuguz Reservoir, or the Tashkent Sea, is also located in the oblast.
Of the total area under cultivation in the oblast, industrial crops account for 157,100 ha, or 42.1 percent, including 140,600 ha planted with cotton, or 37.7 percent (in 1913, 55,200 ha). In 1974 the gross yield of raw cotton was 452,000 tons (47,900 tons in 1913), or 8.5 percent of the yield for the Uzbek republic. The cotton yield was 32.1 centners per ha, as compared to 11.4 centners in 1913. Cereal crops accounted for 110,000 ha, or 29.5 percent; fodder crops for 72,600 ha; and potatoes, vegetables, and melons for 33,700 ha. Cotton is raised on irrigated land in all parts of the oblast except in the eastern mountainous and piedmont regions.
Of the other industrial crops, kenaf is grown on irrigated land, and particularly in the Chirchik valley. Of the cereal crops, spring and winter barley are most common. Spring and winter wheat are grown on nonirrigated land, and rice is grown on irrigated land in the Chirchik valley. Potatoes and vegetables are grown near Tashkent, Chirchik, Iangiiul’, and Angren. In 1974 the oblast produced 15.1 percent of the republic’s total harvest of cereal crops, including 16.1 percent of the rice. It produced 41.1 percent of the potatoes and 29.7 percent of the vegetables. The area planted in fruits and berries amounted to 43,500 ha, with 10,200 ha occupied by vineyards. The orchards consist mainly of apple and cherry trees; the grapes grown in the vineyards are used chiefly for wine-making.
Beef and dairy farming is the most important sector of livestock breeding in Tashkent Oblast. The oblast holds third place in the republic, after Samarkand and Fergana oblasts, in the number of head of cattle, with 304,500 head as of Jan. 1, 1975. More than half the cattle are raised in the region around Tashkent. Swine (89,900 head) and sheep and goats (592,700 head) are also raised. Horses are bred, and there is poultry husbandry. Silkworms are raised in the irrigated regions, with 1,515 tons of cocoons produced in 1974, or 6.8 percent of the yield for the republic as a whole.
The oblast has 346 km of railroads (1974). The Moscow-Tashkent-Krasnovodsk railroad line goes through the oblast, connecting Middle Asia with the European USSR. Branch lines go from Tashkent to Angren and Charvak. There are 3,823 km of automobile roads (1974), including 3,339 km of paved roads. The main roads are the Great Uzbekistan Highway, which goes from Tashkent to Termez, and the Tashkent-Angren-Kokand Highway, which links Tashkent Oblast with the Fergana Valley by way of the Kamchik pass. Air transport is well developed; there is a major airport at Tashkent, with connections to Moscow, Leningrad, Kiev, Novosibirsk, and Khabarovsk. Tashkent is a stop on the international air routes connecting Moscow with New Delhi and with Rangoon.
G. R. ASANOV
Schools, scientific and cultural institutions, and public health. Before 1917, the region that is now Tashkent Oblast has 58 general-education schools with 9,060 pupils, one specialized secondary school with 86 students, and no higher educational institutions. In the 1974–75 school year (except for Tashkent) there were 433,000 pupils in 993 general-education schools of all types, and more than 11,400 students at the 30 vocational-technical educational institutions of the State Vocational-Technical Education System of the USSR. There were more than 18,100 students at 20 specialized secondary schools, and 11,000 students at two higher educational institutions—the oblast’s pedagogical institute in Angren and the agricultural institute in Ordzhonikidze Raion. In 1975 there were more than 75,100 children at 669 preschool institutions.
The major scientific institutions in Tashkent include a scientific research institute for horticulture, viticulture, and wine-making in Tashkent Raion. A scientific research institute for selective breeding and seed growing of cotton, the All-Union Scientific Research Institute of Cotton Cultivation, and a livestock-breeding scientific research institute are located in Ordzhonikidze Raion. The Middle Asian Scientific Research Institute of Sericulture and a scientific research station for irrigation technology are in Kalinin Raion. The Middle Asian Scientific Research Institute for the Mechanization and Electrification of Agriculture is located in Iangiiul’, the Middle Asian Scientific Research and Planning Institute for Nonferrous Metallurgy is in Almalyk, and the Uzbek Scientific Research Institute for Rice is in Srednechirchik Raion.
As of Jan. 1, 1975, the oblast had 683 public libraries, with 5,577,000 books and journals, museums of local lore in Angren and Chirchik, an art gallery in Angren, 466 clubs, 578 motion-picture projection units, and 97 extracurricular institutions.
The oblast newspapers are Toshkent khakikati (in Uzbek, since 1954) and Tashkentskaia pravda (in Russian, since 1954). The oblast receives the same radio and television broadcasts that Tashkent receives.
As of January 1975, Tashkent Oblast (except for the city of Tashkent) had 153 hospitals with 17,100 beds (10.3 beds per 1,000 inhabitants) and 3,200 physicians (one physician per 524 inhabitants). The oblast has the balneological health resort Tash-kentskie Mineral’nye Vody, 12 sanatoriums, and 16 houses of rest and resort hotels.
REFERENCESNarodnoe khoziaistvo Uzbekskoi SSR za 50 let (Iubileinyi statistich. ezhegodnik). Tashkent, 1974.
Proizvoditel’nye sily Uzbekistana iperspeklivy ikh razvitiia. Tashkent, 1974.