Territory, thsd. square km

86.6

Number of population, thsd. person (at the beginning of 2016 year)

9 705,6

Population density, per km 2

112

Capital

Baku

Official language

Azerbaijanian

Monetary unit

manat

Autonomus Republics

1

Districts

63

Towns

78

Districts of cities

14

Settlements

261

Rural territorial division

1726

Rural settlements

4248

Azerbaijan Republic is situated in the southeast of Transcaucasus. The country is washed upon the Caspian Sea in the East. Azerbaijan borders on the Russian Federation in the north, Georgia and Armenia in the north-west, Turkey in the south-west and Iran in the south. The total area of Azerbaijan is 86,6 thousand km2. The capital of Azerbaijan Republic is Baku-city

Azerbaijan is a geographical name. On the one hand, this name is linked with the population, which lived in this region for thousand of years before our era, and who were mostly fire-worshippers. Local population considered that fire was their God and so they worshipped the fire. "Azer" means fire. The Turkic name "Azer" was used for this territory for a long time. The word "Azer" consists of two parts - "az" and "er". In Turkic languages, "az" means a good intention and a fate of success. Thus, the word "Azer" means "a brave man", "a brave boy", and the "fire keeper". The word "Azerbaijan" originates from the name of an ancient Turkish tribe, who resided in those territories.

Occupying comparatively small territory, Azerbaijan has unique climatic peculiarities. Out of 12 climatic zones 9 exist on the territory of Azerbaijan: from Subtropics to Alpine meadows. More than half of the territory of the country occupied by the Talysh Mountains, the Greater, and the Smaller Caucasus Mountains. In the mountains, there are sources of numerous rivers falling mainly into the Caspian Sea. The largest of them are Kur (Kura), Araz (Araks), Samur, Ganykh (Alazan).

Lakes of volcanic and glacial origin as well as those formed as a result of the activity of the Caspian Sea number more 100. A real pearl among the lakes of Azerbaijan is Goygol, located at the altitude of 1576 m in the mountains of the Smaller Caucasus. The lake was formed as a result of the earthquake in 1139. While boating on the lake, it is possible to discern without any strain through nearly 100 meters of thickness of crystal pure water alive, as if preserved in alcohol, trees - silent eye-witnesses of a terrible natural cataclysm of almost 900 years' remoteness.

Flora and fauna of the country are variable and very rich. 4500 species of the highest cryptogrammic and flowering plants compose more than 64% of flora structure of Caucasus. Fauna of the country is characterized by considerable variety and numbers 15 thousand species of insects, more than 1100 species of vertebrates, 97 species of mammals. Being the most important objects of fowling, waterfowls and some others are of the most economic value among 348 species of birds. About 120 species and subspecies of fish dwell in the Azerbaijani sector of the Caspian Sea. 7 species and subspecies of sturgeons, fishery catch of which in the Caspian Sea makes up about 90% of their catch in the world, are of utmost value for the Caspian Sea.

There are 15 natural and historical reserves, 20 sanctuaries and hunting areas, as well as 7 rest zones along the Caspian Sea. By number of reserves on 1 km2 of the territory Azerbaijan is in the lead in the world.

Azerbaijan is one of the most ancient sites of humankind. The humankind was present here at every stage of their historical development. There were living settlements in Azerbaijan even at the earliest stages of humankind. Azerbaijan made its own contribution into the establishment of the current culture and civilization, progress and dialectics.

Azerbaijan is a country of rich history and ancient culture. On the territory of present republic, which was in ancient times a junction of trade-routes from Asia to Europe, have been kept 6308 historical, archaeological and architectural monuments and 65 monuments of world significance which even today excite general admiration.

Azerbaijan is a country of ancient culture. The Oguz tribes which moved here and stayed for ages, have found a deeply rooted culture and in their turn enriched it with Turkic national traditions. The talented and creative powers of our nation are personified in such epic monuments as "Kitabi-Dede Gorgud", "Oguzname" "Koroglu" and many others.

The science and the enlightenment in Azerbaijan have a centuries-old history. The Baku State University was founded in 1919; the institutes of the Academy of Sciences of Azerbaijan play an exceptional role in scientific, educational and cultural development of Azerbaijan. Local scientists are currently studying such important issues as the depths of the Caspian Sea, space exploration and the secrets of human brain.

The existing educational system of Azerbaijan is made up of dozens of higher educational institutions and technical schools, thousands of high schools, colleges and lyceums.

One of the most important problems, which are currently solved by local scientists, is environmental protection of the Caspian Sea and different regions of Azerbaijan. Such natural reserves as Gizilagach, Shirvan, Zagatala, Aggol, Girkan and others were established due to the efforts of Azerbaijani scientists.

Through the decades, the local industry was successfully represented by oil producing, petrochemical and oil processing enterprises. The agricultural industry is famous for cotton growing, viticulture, vegetable growing and cattle breeding.

If one compares the economy of Azerbaijan with a living body, it becomes evident that oil flows in the veins of Azerbaijan. The oil and gas resources of Azerbaijan have made this place famous in every part of the world from the ancient times.

The word Azerbaijan brings its main wealth - oil - before the eyes. Oil is not only the wealth, but the fame as well. People were coming to Azerbaijan from distant places for this specific taste and colored puddle under the ground. Throughout the centuries, camelcades carried waterskins of oil in both eastern and western directions. The Azerbaijani oil is not used exclusively for the electricity production, but also as a valuable medicine for a variety of diseases. There has been an increasing demand for oil throughout the centuries.

From the beginning of the 20th century, the continuous industrial development around the world, caused an unprecedented growth of the demand for oil. It was at this time oil turned from an everyday mean into an industrial product. Oil becomes the most important problem in the world in the 20th century - the century of science and technologies. Oil-producing countries have acquired special oil policies and oil strategies in this connection.

Azerbaijan is currently involved into the implementation of huge energy projects. Oil and gas projects are successfully implemented in the Azeri Caspian sector. Azerbaijan is a country, which plays an extremely important role in the Caspian and Caucasian regions, particularly in the development of transport infrastructure in the Caucasus and the implementation of energy projects. It was the region's first country to explore the huge energy potential, to form an absolutely new economic model in the regional development, and to expand political and economic relations between Europe and Asia.

Azerbaijan has already begun its integration in European and world tourism community owing to participation in the international tourism exhibitions, fairs and exchanges. We offer such tourism productions as - cultural and cognitive, sports, extreme, specialized, thematic, ethnographic and religious tours all over the territory of Azerbaijan, exotic hunting for Daghestanian goat in alpine parts of the Greater Caucasus Mountains, relaxation on the coast of the Caspian Sea and the main tourism production of Silk Road in Azerbaijan a bus tour "Along Azeri Silk Road" on the route Baku-Shamakhi-Sheki-Balakan-Georgia.

At present WTO has already published and now is distributing a colorful booklet "Silk Road" with a section dedicated to Azerbaijan, which is an important tool of marketing and tourism-promotion of countries participated in the project.

Ministry of Youth, Sport and Tourism, established on 18 April 2001, is actively involved in the process of development of the tourism industry: there were approved 7 main routes through towns and regions of the most interest, covered almost all territory of the country and where is concentrated the largest number of tourism, cultural and historical places.

After admitting of Azerbaijan to WTO as a full member in Seoul (South Korea) on 25 September 2001, WTO has provided us with recommendations and assistance on wide range of problems including general plans, technical and economic basing, economic, statistic and legal information.

Beginning from 2001 Azerbaijan participate every year in several large exhibitions: MITT (Moscow), WTM (London), ITB (Berlin), MTE (Istanbul) and etc. Holding in Baku of the yearly International Tourism Fair "AITF" has transformed into a good tradition.

In spite of the sad results of Armenia's aggression against Azerbaijan (Armenia occupied the territory of Nagorno Karabakh and seven neighboring districts. One million out of total population of eight million are refugees), our country mobilized its potential and had great successes in building democracy. Azerbaijan manages to successfully overcome the difficulties and continues making important and firm steps towards the establishment of a democratic and lawful country with civil society.

Azerbaijan has membership in the United Nations (UN), Organization of Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), Council of Europe (CE), Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), GUUAM, Organization of Islamic Conference, Black Sea Economic Collaboration (BSEC), Organization of Economic Cooperation (OEC). Azerbaijan also actively cooperates with the European Union, NATO, International Monetary Fond, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Islamic Development Bank and other organizations. It accedes to the new joint documents and international agreements.

Population of Azerbaijan Republic

Number of population (at the beginning of the year)

Years

Total number of population, thsd person

of which:

Per cen, of total population

urban places

rural places

urban places

rural places

2000

8 032.8

4 116.4

3 916.4

51.2

48.8

2001

8 114.3

4 167.2

3 947.1

51.4

48.6

2002

8 191.3

4 219.7

3 971.6

51.5

48.5

2003

8 269.1

4 273.7

3 995.4

51.7

48.3

2004

8 349.0

4 403.6

3 945.4

52.7

47.3

2005

8 447.3

4 477.6

3 969.7

53.0

47.0

2006

8 553.0

4 565.7

3 987.3

53.4

46.6

2007

8 665.9

4 636.6

4 029.3

53.5

46.5

2008

8 779.8

4 733.6

4 046.2

53.9

46.1

2009

8 896.9

4 818.3

4 078.6

54.2

45.8

2010

8 997.4

4 866.6

4 130.8

54.1

45.9

2011

9 111.1

4 829.5

4 281.6

53.0

47.0

2012

9 235,1

4 888.7

4 346.4

52,9

47,1

2013

9 356,5

4 966.2

4 390.3

53,1

46,9

2014

9 477,1

5 045.4

4 431.7

53,2

46,8

2015

9 593,0

5 098. 3

4 494.7

53,1

46,9

2016

9 705,6

5 152.4

4 553.2

53,1

46,9