Turkmenistan - Economic Indicators

Economic Overview

Turkmenistan is largely a desert country with intensive agriculture in irrigated oases and significant natural gas and oil resources. The two largest crops are cotton, most of which is produced for export, and wheat, which is domestically consumed. Although agriculture accounts for almost 8% of GDP, it continues to employ nearly half of the country's workforce. Hydrocarbon exports, the bulk of which is natural gas going to China, make up 25% of Turkmenistan’s GDP. Ashgabat has explored two initiatives to bring gas to new markets: a trans-Caspian pipeline that would carry...

Continue reading View Factbook for Turkmenistan

GDP Reference Last Previous Units Frequency
Nominal Gross Domestic Product 2016 126,629,600,000 125,298,700,000 NCU Annual
Real Gross Domestic Product 2016 51,249,470,416 48,257,505,100 NCU Annual
Private Consumption 2012 15,110,790,900 6,493,155,600 NCU Annual
Government Consumption 2012 8,876,478,800 7,589,886,100 NCU Annual
Nominal Fixed Investment (gross fixed capital formation) 2012 47,302,896,000 43,267,016,000 NCU Annual
Investment 2012 47,302,896,000 43,267,016,000 NCU Annual
Real Investment 2006 4,709,351,500 4,968,432,400 NCU Annual
Real Private Consumption 1991 7,900,000,000 6,800,000,000 NCU Annual
Real Government Consumption 1991 3,800,000,000 2,900,000,000 NCU Annual
Labor Reference Last Previous Units Frequency
Labor Force 2017 2,603,919 2,565,153 # Annual
Trade Reference Last Previous Units Frequency
Exports of Goods and Services 2012 73,417,801,600 62,233,044,400 NCU Annual
Imports of Goods and Services 2012 44,489,967,200 36,268,102,100 NCU Annual
Real Exports of Goods and Services 2006 16,015,584,000 11,235,640,000 NCU Annual
Real Imports of Goods and Services 2006 7,651,748,000 8,255,104,000 NCU Annual
Business Reference Last Previous Units Frequency
Change in Inventories 2012 0 0 NCU Annual
Demographics Reference Last Previous Units Frequency
Population 2017 5,758,000 5,662,544 # Annual
Birth Rate 2016 25.37 26.01 # per Ths. pop. Annual
Death Rate 2016 7.08 7.1 # per Ths. pop. Annual
Net Migration 2012 -50,002 # Annual

Factbook

Background

Background:
Present-day Turkmenistan covers territory that has been at the crossroads of civilizations for centuries. The area was ruled in antiquity by various Persian empires, and was conquered by Alexander the Great, Muslim armies, the Mongols, Turkic warriors, and eventually the Russians. In medieval times, Merv (located in present-day Mary province) was one of the great cities of the Islamic world and an important stop on the Silk Road. Annexed by Russia in the late 1800s, Turkmenistan later figured prominently in the anti-Bolshevik movement in Central Asia. In 1924, Turkmenistan became a Soviet republic; it achieved independence upon the dissolution of the USSR in 1991. Extensive hydrocarbon/natural gas reserves, which have yet to be fully exploited, have begun to transform the country. The Government of Turkmenistan is moving to expand its extraction and delivery projects and has attempted to diversify its gas export routes beyond Russia's pipeline network. In 2010, new gas export pipelines that carry Turkmen gas to China and to northern Iran began operating, effectively ending the Russian monopoly on Turkmen gas exports. In 2016 and 2017, Turkmen sales of natural gas were halted to Russia and Iran, respectively, making China the sole major buyer of Turkmen gas. President for Life Saparmurat NYYAZOW died in December 2006, and Turkmenistan held its first multi-candidate presidential election in February 2007. Gurbanguly BERDIMUHAMEDOW, a deputy cabinet chairman under NYYAZOW, emerged as the country's new president. He was reelected in 2012 and again in 2017 with over 97% of the vote in both instances, in elections widely regarded as undemocratic.

Geography

Location:
Central Asia, bordering the Caspian Sea, between Iran and Kazakhstan
Geographic coordinates:
40 00 N, 60 00 E
Map references:
Asia
Area:
total: 488,100 sq km
land: 469,930 sq km
water: 18,170 sq km
country comparison to the world: 54
Area - comparative:
slightly more than three times the size of Georgia; slightly larger than California
Land boundaries:
total: 4,158 km
border countries (4): Afghanistan 804 km, Iran 1,148 km, Kazakhstan 413 km, Uzbekistan 1,793 km
Coastline:
0 km (landlocked); note - Turkmenistan borders the Caspian Sea (1,768 km)
Maritime claims:
none (landlocked)
Climate:
subtropical desert
Terrain:
flat-to-rolling sandy desert with dunes rising to mountains in the south; low mountains along border with Iran; borders Caspian Sea in west
Elevation:
mean elevation: 230 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Vpadina Akchanaya -81 m (Sarygamysh Koli is a lake in northern Turkmenistan with a water level that fluctuates above and below the elevation of Vpadina Akchanaya, the lake has dropped as low as -110 m)
highest point: Gora Ayribaba 3,139 m
Natural resources:
petroleum, natural gas, sulfur, salt
Land use:
agricultural land: 72%
arable land 4.1%; permanent crops 0.1%; permanent pasture 67.8%
forest: 8.8%
other: 19.2% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land:
19,950 sq km (2012)
Population - distribution:
the most densely populated areas are the southern, eastern, and northeastern oases; approximately 50% of the population lives in and around the capital of Ashgabat
Natural hazards:
earthquakes; mudslides; droughts; dust storms; floods
Environment - current issues:
contamination of soil and groundwater with agricultural chemicals, pesticides; salination, water logging of soil due to poor irrigation methods; Caspian Sea pollution; diversion of a large share of the flow of the Amu Darya into irrigation contributes to that river's inability to replenish the Aral Sea; desertification
Environment - international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note:
landlocked; the western and central low-lying desolate portions of the country make up the great Garagum (Kara-Kum) desert, which occupies over 80% of the country; eastern part is plateau

People & Society

Population:
5,351,277 (July 2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 119
Nationality:
noun: Turkmen(s)
adjective: Turkmen
Ethnic groups:
Turkmen 85%, Uzbek 5%, Russian 4%, other 6% (2003)
Languages:
Turkmen (official) 72%, Russian 12%, Uzbek 9%, other 7%
Religions:
Muslim 89%, Eastern Orthodox 9%, unknown 2%
Age structure:
0-14 years: 25.79% (male 699,612/female 680,583)
15-24 years: 18.39% (male 495,025/female 488,930)
25-54 years: 43.18% (male 1,147,044/female 1,163,762)
55-64 years: 7.9% (male 199,363/female 223,443)
65 years and over: 4.74% (male 110,505/female 143,010) (2017 est.)
population pyramid:
Dependency ratios:
total dependency ratio: 52.7
youth dependency ratio: 46.5
elderly dependency ratio: 6.2
potential support ratio: 16.1 (2015 est.)
Median age:
total: 27.9 years
male: 27.5 years
female: 28.4 years (2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 140
Population growth rate:
1.12% (2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 102
Birth rate:
19.1 births/1,000 population (2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 86
Death rate:
6.1 deaths/1,000 population (2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 160
Net migration rate:
-1.8 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 154
Population distribution:
the most densely populated areas are the southern, eastern, and northeastern oases; approximately 50% of the population lives in and around the capital of Ashgabat
Urbanization:
urban population: 50.8% of total population (2017)
rate of urbanization: 1.87% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Major urban areas - population:
ASHGABAT (capital) 746,000 (2015)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.04 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.98 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.89 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.77 male(s)/female
total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2017 est.)
Mother's mean age at first birth:
24.6 years (2006 est.)
Maternal mortality ratio:
42 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 104
Infant mortality rate:
total: 34.3 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 41.2 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 27 deaths/1,000 live births (2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 56
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 70.4 years
male: 67.4 years
female: 73.6 years (2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 159
Total fertility rate:
2.07 children born/woman (2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 110
Contraceptive prevalence rate:
50.2% (2015/16)
Health expenditures:
2.1% of GDP (2014)
country comparison to the world: 190
Physicians density:
2.29 physicians/1,000 population (2014)
Hospital bed density:
7.4 beds/1,000 population (2013)
Drinking water source:
improved:
urban: 89.1% of population
rural: 53.7% of population
total: 71.1% of population
unimproved:
urban: 10.9% of population
rural: 46.3% of population
total: 28.9% of population (2012 est.)
Sanitation facility access:
improved:
urban: 100% of population
rural: 98.2% of population
total: 99.1% of population
unimproved:
urban: 0% of population
rural: 1.8% of population
total: 0.9% of population (2012 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
NA
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
NA
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
NA
Obesity - adult prevalence rate:
18.6% (2016)
country comparison to the world: 117
Children under the age of 5 years underweight:
3.2% (2015)
country comparison to the world: 68
Education expenditures:
3% of GDP (2012)
Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 99.7%
male: 99.8%
female: 99.6% (2015 est.)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 11 years
male: 11 years
female: 11 years (2014)

Government

Country name:
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Turkmenistan
local long form: none
local short form: Turkmenistan
former: Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic
etymology: the suffix "-stan" means "place of" or "country," so Turkmenistan literally means the "Land of the Turkmen [people]"
Government type:
presidential republic; authoritarian
Capital:
name: Ashgabat (Ashkhabad)
geographic coordinates: 37 57 N, 58 23 E
time difference: UTC+5 (10 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions:
5 provinces (welayatlar, singular - welayat) and 1 independent city*: Ahal Welayaty (Anew), Ashgabat*, Balkan Welayaty (Balkanabat), Dasoguz Welayaty, Lebap Welayaty (Turkmenabat), Mary Welayaty
note: administrative divisions have the same names as their administrative centers (exceptions have the administrative center name following in parentheses)
Independence:
27 October 1991 (from the Soviet Union)
National holiday:
Independence Day, 27 October (1991)
Constitution:
history: adopted 18 May 1992
amendments: proposed by the National Assembly; passage requires two-thirds majority vote of the total Assembly membership or absolute majority approval in a referendum; amended several times, last in 2016; note - in mid-2014, the president established a Constitutional Commission to initiate a process for developing constitutional reforms (2017)
Legal system:
civil law system with Islamic law influences
International law organization participation:
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
Citizenship:
citizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Turkmenistan
dual citizenship recognized: yes
residency requirement for naturalization: 7 years
Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: President Gurbanguly BERDIMUHAMEDOW (since 14 February 2007); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government
head of government: President Gurbanguly BERDIMUHAMEDOW (since 14 February 2007)
cabinet: Cabinet of Ministers appointed by the president
elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 7-year term (no term limits); election last held on 12 February 2017 (next to be held in February 2024)
election results: Gurbanguly BERDIMUHAMEDOW reelected president; percent of vote - Gurbanguly BERDIMUHAMEDOW (DPT) 97.7%, other 2.3%
Legislative branch:
description: unicameral National Assembly or Mejlis (125 seats; members directly elected from single-seat constituencies by absolute majority vote; members serve 5-year terms)
elections: last held on 25 March 2018, although interim elections are held on an ad hoc basis to fill vacant sets
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - DPT 55, APT 11, PIE 11, Organization of Trade Unions of Turkmenistan 33, Women's Union of Turkmenistan 16, PIE 14, the remaining 48 parliamentary seats were won by individuals nominated by citizen groups
Judicial branch:
highest court(s): Supreme Court of Turkmenistan (consists of the court president and 21 associate judges and organized into civil, criminal, and military chambers)
judge selection and term of office: judges appointed by the president for 5-year terms
subordinate courts: High Commercial Court; appellate courts; provincial, district, and city courts; military courts
Political parties and leaders:
Agrarian Party of Turkmenistan or APT [Bashim ANNAGURBANOW]
Democratic Party of Turkmenistan or DPT [Ata SERDAROW]
Organization of Trade Unions of Turkmenistan
Magtymguly Youth Organization
Party of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs or PIE [Saparmyrat OVGANOW]
Women's Union of Turkmenistan
note: all of these parties support President BERDIMUHAMEDOW; a law authorizing the registration of political parties went into effect in January 2012; unofficial, small opposition movements exist abroad
Political pressure groups and leaders:
none
International organization participation:
ADB, CIS (associate member, has not ratified the 1993 CIS charter although it participates in meetings and held the chairmanship of the CIS in 2012), EAPC, EBRD, ECO, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO (correspondent), ITU, MIGA, NAM, OIC, OPCW, OSCE, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO
Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Mered Bairamovich ORAZOW (since 14 February 2001)
chancery: 2207 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 588-1500
FAX: [1] (202) 588-0697
Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Allan MUSTARD (since 20 January 2015)
embassy: No. 9 1984 Street (formerly Pushkin Street), Ashgabat, Turkmenistan 744000
mailing address: 7070 Ashgabat Place, Washington, DC 20521-7070
telephone: [993] (12) 94-00-45
FAX: [993] (12) 94-26-14
Flag description:
green field with a vertical red stripe near the hoist side, containing five tribal guls (designs used in producing carpets) stacked above two crossed olive branches; five white stars and a white crescent moon appear in the upper corner of the field just to the fly side of the red stripe; the green color and crescent moon represent Islam; the five stars symbolize the regions or welayats of Turkmenistan; the guls reflect the national identity of Turkmenistan where carpet-making has long been a part of traditional nomadic life
note: the flag of Turkmenistan is the most intricate of all national flags
National symbol(s):
Akhal-Teke horse; national colors: green, white
National anthem:
name: "Garassyz, Bitarap Turkmenistanyn" (Independent, Neutral, Turkmenistan State Anthem)
lyrics/music: collective/Veli MUKHATOV
note: adopted 1997, lyrics revised in 2008, following the death of President Saparmurat NYYAZOW, to eliminate references to him

Economy

Economy - overview:
Turkmenistan is largely a desert country with intensive agriculture in irrigated oases and significant natural gas and oil resources. The two largest crops are cotton, most of which is produced for export, and wheat, which is domestically consumed. Although agriculture accounts for almost 8% of GDP, it continues to employ nearly half of the country's workforce. Hydrocarbon exports, the bulk of which is natural gas going to China, make up 25% of Turkmenistan’s GDP. Ashgabat has explored two initiatives to bring gas to new markets: a trans-Caspian pipeline that would carry gas to Europe and the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India gas pipeline. Both face major financing and security hurdles and are unlikely to be completed soon.
Turkmenistan’s autocratic governments under presidents NIYAZOW (1991-2006) and BERDIMUHAMEDOW (since 2007) have made little progress improving the business climate, privatizing state-owned industries, and combatting corruption, limiting economic development outside the energy sector. High energy prices in the mid-2000s allowed the government to undertake extensive development and social spending, including providing heavy utility subsidies.
Low energy prices since mid-2014 are hampering Turkmenistan’s economic growth and reducing government revenues. The government has cut subsidies in several areas, and wage arrears have increased. In January 2014, the Central Bank of Turkmenistan devalued the manat by 19%, and downward pressure on the currency continues. There is a widening spread between the official exchange rate (4.1 TMM per US dollar) and the black market exchange rate (approximately 7 TMM per US dollar). Currency depreciation, corruption, isolationist policies, and limited spending on public services has resulted in a stagnate economy that is nearing crisis. Turkmenistan claims substantial foreign currency reserves, but non-transparent data limit international institutions’ ability to verify this information.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$103.5 billion (2017 est.)
$97.16 billion (2016 est.)
$91.48 billion (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
country comparison to the world: 84
GDP (official exchange rate):
$41.67 billion (2017 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
6.5% (2017 est.)
6.2% (2016 est.)
6.5% (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 18
GDP - per capita (PPP):
$18,700 (2017 est.)
$17,800 (2016 est.)
$17,000 (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
country comparison to the world: 94
Gross national saving:
23.9% of GDP (2017 est.)
23.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
19.1% of GDP (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 60
GDP - composition, by end use:
household consumption: 50%
government consumption: 8.2%
investment in fixed capital: 29%
investment in inventories: 0%
exports of goods and services: 29.7%
imports of goods and services: -16.9% (2017 est.)
GDP - composition, by sector of origin:
agriculture: 7.5%
industry: 44.9%
services: 47.7% (2017 est.)
Agriculture - products:
cotton, grain, melons; livestock
Industries:
natural gas, oil, petroleum products, textiles, food processing
Industrial production growth rate:
1% (2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 165
Labor force:
2.305 million (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 117
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 48.2%
industry: 14%
services: 37.8% (2004 est.)
Unemployment rate:
11% (2014 est.)
10.6% (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 143
Population below poverty line:
0.2% (2012 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 2.6%
highest 10%: 31.7% (1998 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
40.8 (1998 est.)
country comparison to the world: 63
Budget:
revenues: $4.436 billion
expenditures: $4.703 billion (2017 est.)
Taxes and other revenues:
10.6% of GDP (2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 212
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-):
-0.6% of GDP (2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 52
Public debt:
23.9% of GDP (2016 est.)
19.4% of GDP (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 182
Fiscal year:
calendar year
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
6% (2017 est.)
3.6% (2016 est.)
country comparison to the world: 182
Central bank discount rate:
5% (31 December 2014 est.)
5% (31 December 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 82
Stock of narrow money:
$1.326 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$1.255 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 147
Stock of broad money:
$12.23 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$5.632 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 103
Stock of domestic credit:
$28.4 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$13.09 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 83
Market value of publicly traded shares:
$NA
Current account balance:
$-6.417 billion (2017 est.)
$-7.605 billion (2016 est.)
country comparison to the world: 179
Exports:
$7.394 billion (2017 est.)
$6.987 billion (2016 est.)
country comparison to the world: 101
Exports - commodities:
gas, crude oil, petrochemicals, textiles, cotton fiber
Exports - partners:
China 70%, Turkey 5.3%, Italy 5.3%, Afghanistan 4.5%, Russia 4.1% (2016)
Imports:
$4.801 billion (2017 est.)
$5.001 billion (2016 est.)
country comparison to the world: 124
Imports - commodities:
machinery and equipment, chemicals, foodstuffs
Imports - partners:
Turkey 26.4%, Russia 10.5%, Japan 8.6%, Germany 8.2%, South Korea 7.8%, China 7.2%, Italy 5.2% (2016)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$20.6 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$25.05 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
country comparison to the world: 59
Debt - external:
$443.4 million (31 December 2017 est.)
$425.3 million (31 December 2016 est.)
country comparison to the world: 181
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
$3.061 billion (2013 est.)
$3.117 billion (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 111
Exchange rates:
Turkmen manat (TMM) per US dollar -
4.13 (2017 est.)
3.5 (2016 est.)
3.5 (2015 est.)
3.5 (2014 est.)
2.85 (2013 est.)

Energy

Electricity access:
electrification - total population: 100% (2016)
Electricity - production:
21.18 billion kWh (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 74
Electricity - consumption:
15.09 billion kWh (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 79
Electricity - exports:
3.201 billion kWh (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 41
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2016 est.)
country comparison to the world: 213
Electricity - installed generating capacity:
4.001 million kW (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 89
Electricity - from fossil fuels:
100% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 20
Electricity - from nuclear fuels:
0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 197
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants:
0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 210
Electricity - from other renewable sources:
0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 210
Crude oil - production:
230,800 bbl/day (2016 est.)
country comparison to the world: 35
Crude oil - exports:
62,880 bbl/day (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 41
Crude oil - imports:
0 bbl/day (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 201
Crude oil - proved reserves:
600 million bbl (1 January 2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 45
Refined petroleum products - production:
191,100 bbl/day (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 51
Refined petroleum products - consumption:
158,000 bbl/day (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 66
Refined petroleum products - exports:
53,780 bbl/day (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 51
Refined petroleum products - imports:
0 bbl/day (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 213
Natural gas - production:
83.7 billion cu m (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 10
Natural gas - consumption:
67.52 billion cu m (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 20
Natural gas - exports:
40.3 billion cu m (2015 est.)
country comparison to the world: 9
Natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 199
Natural gas - proved reserves:
7.504 trillion cu m (1 January 2017 est.)
country comparison to the world: 6
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy:
67 million Mt (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 52

Communications

Telephones - fixed lines:
total subscriptions: 665,000
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 13 (July 2016 est.)
country comparison to the world: 91
Telephones - mobile cellular:
total: 8.575 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 160 (July 2016 est.)
country comparison to the world: 95
Telephone system:
general assessment: telecommunications network is gradually improving
domestic: Turkmentelekom, in cooperation with foreign partners, has installed high-speed fiber-optic lines and has upgraded most of the country's telephone exchanges and switching centers with new digital technology; combined fixed-line and mobile teledensity is about 170 per 100 persons; Russia's Mobile TeleSystems (MTS), the only foreign mobile-cellular service provider in Turkmenistan, suspended operations in September 2017 due to the state-owned telecom company cutting MTS' access to international and long-distance communication services and Internet; Turkmenistan's first telecommunication satellite was launched in 2015 and is expected to greatly improve connectivity in the country
international: country code - 993; linked by fiber-optic cable and microwave radio relay to other CIS republics and to other countries by leased connections to the Moscow international gateway switch; an exchange in Ashgabat switches international traffic through Turkey via Intelsat; satellite earth stations - 1 Orbita and 1 Intelsat (2018)
Broadcast media:
broadcast media is government controlled and censored; 7 state-owned TV and 4 state-owned radio networks; satellite dishes and programming provide an alternative to the state-run media; officials sometimes limit access to satellite TV by removing satellite dishes (2007)
Internet country code:
.tm
Internet users:
total: 951,925
percent of population: 18.0% (July 2016 est.)
country comparison to the world: 134

Transportation

National air transport system:
number of registered air carriers: 1
inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 23
annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 2,138,389
annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 0 mt-km (2015)
Civil aircraft registration country code prefix:
EZ (2016)
Airports:
26 (2013)
country comparison to the world: 126
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 21
over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 9
1,524 to 2,437 m: 9
914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2013)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 5
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
under 914 m: 4 (2013)
Heliports:
1 (2013)
Pipelines:
gas 7,500 km; oil 1,501 km (2013)
Railways:
total: 5,113 km
broad gauge: 5,113 km 1.520-m gauge (2017)
country comparison to the world: 61
Roadways:
total: 58,592 km
paved: 47,577 km
unpaved: 11,015 km (2002)
country comparison to the world: 72
Waterways:
1,300 km (Amu Darya River and Kara Kum Canal are important inland waterways) (2011)
country comparison to the world: 55
Merchant marine:
total: 73
by type: general cargo 8, oil tanker 8, other 57 (2017)
country comparison to the world: 102
Ports and terminals:
major seaport(s): Caspian Sea - Turkmenbasy

Military & Security

Military branches:
Turkmen Armed Forces: Ground Forces, Navy, Air and Air Defense Forces (2013)
Military service age and obligation:
18-27 years of age for compulsory male military service; 2-year conscript service obligation; 20 years of age for voluntary service; males may enroll in military schools from age 15 (2015)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international:
cotton monoculture in Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan creates water-sharing difficulties for Amu Darya river states; field demarcation of the boundaries with Kazakhstan commenced in 2005 and with Uzbekistan in 2017, but Caspian seabed delimitation remains stalled with Azerbaijan, Iran, Russia, and Kazakhstan due to indecision over how to allocate the sea's waters and seabed; bilateral talks continue with Azerbaijan on dividing the seabed and contested oilfields in the middle of the Caspian
Refugees and internally displaced persons:
stateless persons: 5,744 (2016)
Trafficking in persons:
current situation: Turkmenistan is a source country for men, women, and children subjected to forced labor and sex trafficking; Turkmen who migrate abroad are forced to work in the textile, agriculture, construction, and domestic service industries, while women and girls may also be sex trafficked; in 2014, men surpassed women as victims; Turkey and Russia are primary trafficking destinations, followed by the Middle East, South and Central Asia, and other parts of Europe; Turkmen also experience forced labor domestically in the informal construction industry; participation in the cotton harvest is still mandatory for some public sector employees
tier rating: Tier 2 Watch List – Turkmenistan does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking; however, it is making significant efforts to do so; in 2014, Turkmenistan was granted a waiver from an otherwise required downgrade to Tier 3 because its government has a written plan that, if implemented, would constitute making significant efforts to bring itself into compliance with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking; the government made some progress in its law enforcement efforts in 2014, convicting more offenders than in 2013; authorities did not make adequate efforts to identify and protect victims and did not fund international organizations or NGOs that offered protective services; some victims were punished for crimes as a result of being trafficked (2015)
Illicit drugs:
transit country for Afghan narcotics bound for Russian and Western European markets; transit point for heroin precursor chemicals bound for Afghanistan

Economic Indicators for Turkmenistan including actual values, historical data, and latest data updates for the Turkmenistan economy.