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    Turkmenistan Economy 2000

      Economy - overview: Turkmenistan is largely desert country with nomadic cattle raising, intensive agriculture in irrigated oases, and huge gas and oil resources. One-half of its irrigated land is planted in cotton, making it the world's tenth largest producer. It also possesses the world's fifth largest reserves of natural gas and substantial oil resources. Until the end of 1993, Turkmenistan had experienced less economic disruption than other former Soviet states because its economy received a boost from higher prices for oil and gas and a sharp increase in hard currency earnings. In 1994, Russia's refusal to export Turkmen gas to hard currency markets and mounting debts of its major customers in the former USSR for gas deliveries contributed to a sharp fall in industrial production and caused the budget to shift from a surplus to a slight deficit. With an authoritarian ex-communist regime in power and a tribally based social structure, Turkmenistan has taken a cautious approach to economic reform, hoping to use gas and cotton sales to sustain its inefficient economy. Privatization goals remain limited. Turkmenistan is working hard to open new gas export channels through Iran and Turkey to Europe, but these will take many years to realize. In 1998-99, Turkmenistan faced revenue shortfalls due to the continued lack of adequate export routes for natural gas and obligations on extensive short-term external debt. Prospects in the near future are discouraging because of widespread internal poverty and the burden of foreign debt. IMF assistance would seem to be necessary, yet the government is not as yet ready to accept IMF requirements. Turkmenistan's 1999 deal to ship 20 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas through Russia's Gazprom will help alleviate the 2000 fiscal shortfall, but will not make up for the absence of meaningful progress in economic reform.

      GDP: purchasing power parity - $7.7 billion (1999 est.)

      GDP - real growth rate: 9% (1999 est.)

      GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,800 (1999 est.)

      GDP - composition by sector:
      agriculture: 10%
      industry: 62%
      services: 28% (1997 est.)

      Population below poverty line: NA%

      Household income or consumption by percentage share:
      lowest 10%: 2.7%
      highest 10%: 26.9% (1993)

      Inflation rate (consumer prices): 30% (1999 est.)

      Labor force: 2.34 million (1996)

      Labor force - by occupation: agriculture and forestry 44%, industry and construction 19%, other 37% (1996)

      Unemployment rate: NA%

      Budget:
      revenues: $521 million
      expenditures: $548 million, including capital expenditures of $83 million (1996 est.)

      Industries: natural gas, oil, petroleum products, textiles, food processing

      Industrial production growth rate: NA%

      Electricity - production: 8.745 billion kWh (1998)

      Electricity - production by source:
      fossil fuel: 99.94%
      hydro: 0.06%
      nuclear: 0%
      other: 0% (1998)

      Electricity - consumption: 5.453 billion kWh (1998)

      Electricity - exports: 2.74 billion kWh (1998)

      Electricity - imports: 60 million kWh (1998)

      Agriculture - products: cotton, grain; livestock

      Exports: $1.1 billion (1999 est.)

      Exports - commodities: oil and gas 55%, cotton 22% (1998)

      Exports - partners: Iran, Turkey, Russia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Azerbaijan

      Imports: $1.25 billion (1999 est.)

      Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment 45%, chemicals, foodstuffs (1998)

      Imports - partners: Ukraine, Turkey, Russia, Germany, US, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan

      Debt - external: $2.1 billion (1999 est.)

      Economic aid - recipient: $27.2 million (1995)

      Currency: 1 Turkmen manat (TMM) = 100 tenesi

      Exchange rates: Turkmen manats per US$1 - 5,200 (January 2000), 5,350 (January 1999), 4,070 (January 1997), 2,400 (January 1996)

      Fiscal year: calendar year

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