Altai Krai is located in the southeast of Western Siberia. The distance from Moscow to Barnaul, the administrative center of Altai Krai, is 2934 km. Total area of the region is 168 thousand sq. km. The region borders on Novosibirsk Oblast in the north, in the east - Kemerovo Oblast, the southeastern boundary is with the Altai Republic, in the south-west and west - the state border with the Republic of Kazakhstan. Total population is 2.35 million people. A distinctive feature of Altai Krai is the high share of the rural population. There are 10 cities and 59 rural districts in the region. The administrative center is Barnaul.
In the Krai there are two types of landscapes: in the east - mountain, in the west - steppe. There are almost all natural zones of Russia: steppe and forest-steppe, taiga, mountains and rich river ecosystems. Among the 13,000 lakes, the largest one is Lake Kulundinskoe, its area is 728 sq. km. The largest rivers are the Ob, Biya, Katun, Aley and Charysh.
Altai Krai has huge reserves of various natural resources, which are rich in plant and animal life. Minerals are from deposits of polymetals, iron, table salt, soda, gypsum, brown coal and precious metals. The region is famous for unique deposits of jasper, malachite, porphyry, marbles, granites, building materials, mineral and drinking waters, therapeutic muds. The forest fund is 4 433.3 thousand hectares (26.4% of the total territory of the region).
The economy of Altai Krai is a well-diversified complex. The share of industry, agriculture, and trade predominates in the structure of the gross regional product. These activities form 51% of the total GRP. A favorable business climate and increased business activity, development of public, transport and engineering infrastructure contribute to economic growth in the region.
The modern structure of the industrial complex is characterized by a high share of manufacturing industries (over 80% in the volume of shipped goods). The leading types of economic activity in industry are the production of food products, machine-building products (railway-, boiler-, diesel, agricultural machinery, electrical equipment production), production of coke, rubber and plastic products, as well as chemical production. The index of industrial production in 2017 was 103.4%.
Agriculture plays an important role in the formation of the economy of the Krai and the way of life of the population. The basis of this is a large arable land area - 6.5 million hectares (5.6% of the arable lands of Russia), there are 5 soil and climate zones, hundreds of regionalized varieties of crops, well-developed livestock (dairy cattle breeding, poultry, pig and sheep breeding), and also qualified labor resources.
Altai Krai is the largest producer of environmentally friendly foods in Russia.
The region ranks 1st in the Russian Federation in the sown area of grain and grain legume crops. The Krai ranks 4st in Siberia in the gross grain harvest. Altai Krai is the only region from the Urals to the Far East that grows sugar beet, the largest producer of sunflower oilseeds in the Siberian Federal District (accounting for more than 90% of production), and holds a leading position in the district in the production of flax fiber.
Altai Krai is in the top Russian regions in food production: 1st place - in flour, fat cheeses and buckwheat production, 2nd place - in cereals production, 3rd place - in pasta production, 3rd place - in animal oil. The region holds a significant share in the production of functional products.
Altai Krai is one of the largest producers of quality beef in Russia. the region ranks 4th in the cattle population in the rating of the subjects of the Russian Federation.
The labor resources of Altai Krai, prepared by scientific and scientific educational institutions of various profiles, are characterized by a high professional level and able to meet the need of the developing economy in scientific researches and highly qualified personnel for the implementation of innovative projects and the location of technologically new productions.
Altai Krai is located at the crossing of transcontinental transit freight and passenger traffics, in close proximity to large raw and processing regions. There are highways connecting Russia with Mongolia, Kazakhstan, a railway connecting Central Asia with the Trans-Siberian Railway, and international airlines. The favorable geographic position of the region and its high transport availability open up wide opportunities for establishing strong economic and trade relations at the interregional and international levels.
The recreational potential in combination with the favorable climate of the south of Western Siberia, rich historical and cultural heritage provide an opportunity for the development of a variety of types of tourism and sports and entertainment recreation in Altai Krai. The region also has unique natural healing resources, which are necessary for the development of sanatorium and resort complexes and the region is one of the largest centers of the health industry in Russia. Over the past years, the resort town Belokurikha has been a winner in the category “Best Resort of Federal Significance”.
About half of its cities and districts have become zones of active tourism development. A special economic zone of tourist and recreational type “Biryuzovaya Katun”, an auto-tourist cluster “Golden Gates”, a tourist and recreational cluster “Belokurikha”, a subcluster “Belokurikha-2” (the investment project received the highest award as “Best Project of a Medical Resort”, as well as a subcluster “Sibirskoe Podvorye”, a tourist and recreational cluster “Barnaul - Mining City”.
The business card of the region was branded routes “Small Golden Ring of Altai” and “Big Golden Ring of Altai”.
The policy of Altai Krai is aimed at creating the most favorable conditions for attracting investments: improving the forms of state support for business, developing infrastructure (transport, energy), strengthening the economic position of the region within Russia and abroad, and law enforcement.
The status of priority socio-economic development areas (PSEDA) was assigned to two monotowns of Altai Krai - Zarinsk and Novoaltaysk. The decision on their creation in the region is formalized by the resolutions of the Government of the Russian Federation.
The main priority of the social and economic development of Altai Krai is the implementation of measures to further improve the quality of life of citizens, creating comfortable conditions for them to reside in the region.
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