Republic of Tyva

Senators by region

Dina Oyun Dina Oyun
member of the Federation Council Committee on the Budget and Financial Markets
Lyudmila Narusova Lyudmila Narusova
Member of the Federation Council Committee on Constitutional Legislation and State Building

Information

Regional flags and emblems

Republic of Tyva Republic of Tyva

PROFILE

Established 17 August 1944

Capital Kyzyl

The Republic of Tyva is part of the Siberian Federal District

Area 168,600 sq km

Population 332,5 (2022)

Ethnic groups

(2010 National Census, %)

Tyvan – 82.04

Russian – 16.27

Other – 3.01

Administrative divisions (2022)

Municipal districts – 17

City districts – 2

Rural towns – 4

Rural districts – 120

Geography and climate

The Republic of Tyva is in the central part of Asia. The maximum north-south distance is 420 km, the east-west distance is 630 km.

The republic borders on the republics of Khakassia, Buryatia, Altai, the Krasnoyarsk Territory and the Irkutsk Region. It also shares an international border with Mongolia.

There are over 2,000 rivers and about 6,720 lakes in the Republic of Tyva. There are high altitude lakes located above the forest limits, at the altitudes of 1800–2000 m, the largest of which are Uzun-Kul, Ieri-Khol, and Khindiktig-Khol. The main rivers are: The Ulug-Khem (the Upper Yenisei River) and its tributaries such as the Bolshoy Yenisei (the Biy-Khem) and the Maly Yenisei (the Kaa-Khem).

The climate is extreme continental. January temperatures average –29.6°C. July temperatures average 16.3°C.

There are also two nature reserves (Azas Nature Reserve and Ubsunur Hollow Biosphere Preserve), 5 natural parks, 15 wildlife sanctuaries, and 15 natural landmarks on the republic’s territory.

Government

The legislative branch is represented by the Supreme Khural (Parliament) of the Republic of Tyva which is the permanent and only body of the legislative (representative) branch in the Republic of Tyva .

The Supreme Khural (Parliament) of the Republic of Tyva has 32 deputies, 16 of them run in the republican electoral district, where winners are identified in proportion to the number of votes cast for lists of candidates nominated by electoral associations in accordance with the election legislation, and the other 16 run in single-member constituencies. The current Supreme Khural was elected on September 2019. Its term expires in September 2024.

The executive branch is represented by the Government of the Republic of Tyva which is the top permanent collective body of executive authority in the republic. There is a system of executive bodies in the Republic of Tyva, headed by the Government chaired by the Head and Prime Minister of the Republic of Tyva.

The Head and Prime Minister of the Republic of Tyva is the highest-ranking official in the republic. He is elected for five years by Russian citizens who permanently reside in the region. The term of office of the current incumbent expires in September 2026.

Economy and natural resources

The Republic of Tyva is rich in non-ferrous and rare metals, bituminous coal, asbestos, iron ore, gold, mercury and various construction materials. The total amount of timber resources exceeds 1 billion cubic m.

The main obstacle hindering the economic development of the Republic of Tyva is its unfavourable geographic location which isolates it from the main economic centres and routes. The development of the republic's economy depends on the Kyzyl — Kuragino railway line construction project and the development of the republic's mineral resources.

The largest industry is mining which is based on the republic’s mineral deposits. The production volumes have increased thanks to such companies as Mezhegeyugol, Lunsin (polymetallic ores), and Tardan-Gold. Tyva Ore Mining Company carries out coal production at Kaa-Khem and Chadan coal mines and is the largest coal producer in the Republic of Tyva.

One of the most promising projects is carried out by Tyva Energy Industrial Corporation which is developing the Elegest coal deposit on the republic's territory. It is also a private investor involved in the construction project for the Elegest — Kyzyl — Kuragino railway line and a coal port terminal in the Russian Far East.

Other well-developed fields include food, timber, woodworking, as well as light industries. The largest share in the production of clothing in the republic belongs to Kyzyl UPP.

Agriculture is the most important branch of the republic’s economy which determines the lifestyle of over 144,500 people who live in rural districts (over 45% of Tyva’s population). Agricultural lands occupy almost 28% of the republic’s territory. The main local agricultural industries include the breeding of beef and dairy cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, horses, deer, oxen and camels. There is also poultry and blue fox (for fur trade) farming.

Culture and tourism

The Republic of Tyva is located in the central part of Asia. There is a monument indicating the geographical centre of the Asian continent in Kyzyl, on the left bank of the Ulug-Khem River. Another place of interest is the Valley of Tsars surrounded by mountains in the Turano-Yuksk Hollow. This place is home to numerous kurgans – tombs of Skythian tribal and clan leaders.

Near the Mongolian border, high in the mountains, at the altitude of 1,300 m abovesea level there is the Tere-Khol lake. There is an island in this lake which contains a ruined structure of an Uyghur fortress called Por-Bazhyn (which translates from the Tyvan language as “clay house”) built in the 8th century AD under the order of the Uyghur kagan called Eletmish Bilge kagan. The architectural monument has a complicated structure: there is a labyrinth of buildings inside a rectangle which resembles a Buddhist or Hindu mandola.

There are also over ten monuments of cave art with hundreds of drawings. Some of them are located near Kyzyl, including Small Bayan-Kol, Syyn-Churek, Ortaa-Sargol, Bizhiktig-Khaya, Chirgaki petroglyphs in the Khemchik River valley, Saryg-Dash, and the right bank of the Yenisei River, such as the oldest Skythian culture monument – the Arzhan kurgan, and the Orkhon inscriptions which are very popular with tourists.

The ethnographic diversity of the Republic of Tyva is represented by the Russian Old Believers, shamanistic rituals, the traditional form of wrestling called Khuresh, an opportunity to live in a real yurta (nomad’s tent) and to imagine that you are an ancient nomad. The Tyvan people practice the art of Khorekteer (Tyvan throat singing).

The following religions are widespread among the people of Tyva: Orthodoxy and Buddhism (Lamaism) as well as shamanism. There are 17 Buddhist temples in Tyva and one khuree (Buddhist monastery). Shamanism is mostly spread among nomad cattle farmers and hunters. It represents an integral part of the spiritual as well as cultural life of the Tyvan people.