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The Komi Republic

1. Geography and landscape:

We live in the Komi Republic which is situated in the north - east of the European part of Russia. Its territory is equal to that of several European states put together. (It occupies about 417 thousand sq. km.). In the north, north- west and west our Republic borders on the Archangelsk region, in the east it borders on the Tumen and Sverdlovsk regions, in the south- west there is the Kirov region while in the south our neighbour is the Perm region.

The Republic is famous for its unique nature and natural wealth. Our coniferous forests strike the eye of the stranger most of all - they cover a considerable territory and are rich in fur-bearing animals such as foxes, hares, squirrels, sables, martens, polar foxes, etc. It is because of the forests that the landscape of our Republic is very picturesque.

The climate here is continental with long and rather severe winters and short and cool summers. The Northern part of the republic lies in the tundra zone with permanently frozen ground. The rest of the territory lies in the taiga region.

The main rivers of the republic are the mighty Pechora, the beautiful Vychegda and the quiet Mezen which are navigable in summer and play an important role in the republic’s economy.

To the east there are the Ural Mountains (the Urals) with the highest peaks Narodnaya (1895) and Payer (1499).

The sheer beauty and magnificence of the scenery is sure to attract hiking and skiing enthusiasts and other seeking an active holiday under harsh conditions. This form of holiday is becoming increasingly popular throughout the entire western world. Today we cannot say that there is an organized western tourism in Komi yet, but it is on its way!

2. The people:

It is difficult to say when men first began to develop this severe but wonderful land. Many centuries ago the Komis, a small people, whose language is related to Finno - Ugric language family, settled on this territory.

Nowadays Komi is a cosmopolitan republic. More than 100 nationalities live here, among them the Russians, the Byelorussians, the Ukrainians, the Uzbeks, the Tartars, the Armenians, the Azerbaijanians, the Estonians and others. 23 percent of the population is the Komis.

The population of the republic is about 1.186.000 people, which is mostly urban. The towns are Vorkuta, Inta, Pechora, Ukhta, Emva, etc. The capital of the republic is Syktyvkar.

3. Mineral resources and the branches of industry our republic is famous for:

The land of our republic is rich in mineral resources and timber. Coal, oil, natural gas, titanium, bauxites alongside with timber created a highly developed industry in the republic. Coking and industrial coal, oil products, gas soot, condensed gas, timber, sawn timber, plywood, cellulose and paper, furniture, building materials - these are only some of the items of Komi’s modern industry. The Pechora coal basin is the main fuel base in the country’s European North. Gas pipelines, which are laid out through taiga and swamps, carry natural gas to central regions and abroad.

Many different enterprises working in oil, gas, timber and construction industries are located in Komi. Among them are “Severgasprom”, “LUKoil”, Syktyvkar big timber complex, many coal- mines, etc.

Komi’s сoal production is managed by two companies, Vorkutaugol and Intaugol. Together they produce 25 million tons of coal annually. Coal reserves are estimated at 8.5 billion tons, 45% of which is of high quality.

The land has the deposits of the crudest oil in the vicinity of Ukhta (the settlement of Yarega).

The known resources amount to 520 million tons of oil, 30 million tons of gas condensate and 200 billion cubic meters of gas.

Komi abounds in opportunities. It is one of the first republics in Russia to have taken steps towards preparing an overall strategy for the investments necessary to achieve the desired objectives in the foreseeable future. The government has initiated the preparation of a master plan for business development which is to form the basis for the investments needed to develop the republic.

More than one hundred foreign companies have already entered into various forms of investments.

The republic of Komi collaborates with Denmark, the USA, Holland, Canada, France, Germany, Luxemburg, the UK.

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