Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer of Australia National University wrote: “As late as 1935, nine raions (districts) of Tajikistan had no telephone and telegraph installations, and seven other raions were devoid of any means of communication at all. The level of development of constituent regions in the republic varied considerably: the north (Khujand, Isfara, Kanibodom) had relatively industrialised areas with market-oriented farming; the centre and the south (Hisor, Kulob, Qurghonteppa, Gharm) clung to subsistence agriculture, and had very little access to the benefits of a modern market economy; as for the Pamirs, its people still practised outmoded methods of agriculture and constantly teetered on the edge of survival. The task of bringing all Tajiks together appeared almost impossible, but the nascent Tajik elite had a very powerful instrument at its disposal: the Soviet government machine, with its vast economic potential and efficient coercive mechanisms. [Source: “Tajikistan: Political and Social History” by Kirill Nourzhanov, Christian Bleuer, Australia National University ]

“The socioeconomic development of Tajikistan in the first half of the twentieth century was an extremely uneven and controversial process. Over a surprisingly short time, Tajikistan achieved remarkable progress in improving standards of living, literacy, culture and emancipation for women. In a sense, however, it was a Pyrrhic victory, for these successes did not reflect the real growth of productive forces in Tajik society. Stalin’s leadership was of the opinion that ‘the triumph of socialist construction in Turkestan is completely dependent on the rapid solution of the literacy problem of the indigenous population’, and it allotted huge resources to the development of non-productive spheres in the region. Consequently, the upkeep of the relatively overinflated stratum of intellectuals, doctors, teachers and other professionals in Tajikistan was entirely up to the Kremlin’s discretion. The depth of cultural changes across Tajik society also remained rather equivocal.

“By the same token, economic development of the republic was regulated by the current needs of the centre, and not by considerations for the long-term prosperity of the Tajik people. Investment occurred primarily in those branches that promised quick returns and provided the All-Union industrial complex with raw materials: cotton-growing and mining. Although a number of sophisticated machine-building, electro-technical and chemical enterprises had been set up in Tajikistan, modern industry remained largely alien to it, because they employed primarily non-indigenous workers and their profile had nothing to do with the requirements of the republic. Such a grotesque economic mechanism could exist and be reasonably efficient only when state socialism in the USSR was in its prime and the Kremlin was able to carry out its role as a universal planner, provider and distributor. “ [Source: “Tajikistan: Political and Social History” by Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer, Australia National University, 2013 ]

Soviet Economic Policy in Tajikistan

Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer wrote: “Tajikistan apparently was in the category of territories less suitable for rapid industrialisation. In 1926, Moscow set up the Permanent Expedition for Exploring Productive Forces of Tajikistan (PEEPFT), which almost immediately arrived at the conclusion that ‘we cannot talk about modernisation of industry in Tajikistan, because there isn’t any, it is an agricultural country’. The expedition implemented an impressive amount of work and finally came up with a set of guidelines as to how exactly the republic’s economy should be developed in the future. Its main recommendations included: 1) establishing mining industry, hydro-power generation and cotton-growing as priorities; 2) setting up basic industry and infrastructure with the help of a workforce and materials imported from the European Soviet Union; 3) dividing Tajikistan into several economic zones with particular production specialisation; 4) rapid restoration and expansion of the irrigation network. [Source: “Tajikistan: Political and Social History” by Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer, Australia National University, 2013 ]

“This blueprint was in compliance with the All-Union economic strategy promulgated at the Sixteenth Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in 1930 and remained valid well into the postwar period. The Kremlin invested generously in the development of Tajikistan, and in 1932 the share of industry in the republic’s economy reached 22 per cent, compared with 6.6 per cent four years earlier.

“The Soviet modernisation of Tajikistan, which was conceived and implemented as a process of forced industrialisation par excellence, brought about two fateful developments as early as the mid 1930s. First, it destroyed a local economic mechanism that organically combined handcrafts and cottage industries on the one hand and modern factory production on the other. In the 1920s, the traditional sector of the economy, based on private and cooperative ownership, was growing at an impressive rate in Turkestan, registering a 42–45 per cent increase in the number of those employed annually, and accounting for 34–37 per cent of industrial output in the region. In the early 1930s, all private and family-owned enterprises in Tajikistan were closed or nationalised; the share of cooperatives in industrial production had decreased to 15.3 per cent by 1940 and stabilised at 3 per cent in the postwar period.

Large state-owned factories emerged as the backbone of the republic’s economy. Dynamics of Industrial Output in Tajikistan, 1913–40 (Year, All industry, Large industry): 1913: 1.0; 1.0; 1928: 0.98; 8.2; 1932: 1.4; 43.7; 1937: 5.1; 183; 1940: 8.8; 324. For the year 1913, large industry includes enterprises with 30 or more workers; for later years, it comprises factories subordinated to All-Union and republican industrial ministries. [Source: Narodnoe khoziaistvo Tadzhikskoi SSR (Stalinabad: Gosstatizdat, 1957), p. 16]

According to Sergei Poliakov, in Tajikistan “city-based industrial production was completely dependent on drawing settlers from the … industrially developed regions of the country, whereas development of rural areas was based on local human resources. But in terms of qualitative characteristics the latter were not prepared enough to guarantee smoothness and efficiency of the process of industrialisation.”

Nourzhanov and Bleuer wrote:“In 1938, migrants from the European part of the Soviet Union accounted for 46 per cent of the entire workforce in industry, construction and transport in Tajikistan. Despite constant attempts on the part of Soviet authorities to increase indigenous representation in these areas, the problem was never satisfactorily resolved. The main reasons for such a state of affairs were not the absence of vocational training facilities, poor command of the Russian language or limited supplies of food and housing in the cities; it was rather caused by the persistence of traditional values and attitudes in Tajik society, whereby industrial labour was not regarded as a very respectable occupation.”

Development of the Vakhsh Valley Under the Soviets

The Vakhsh Valley is an agricultural area of strategic importance south of Dushanbe. Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer wrote: “At the beginning of the Soviet era, the Vakhsh Valley was a sparsely populated river valley inhabited mostly by semi-nomadic Uzbeks. It would soon become a grand project of Soviet agricultural and social engineering. After suppressing the Basmachi rebellion and securing the Afghan border during the 1930s, the Soviet authorities began their transformation of the Vakhsh Valley. The meandering Vakhsh River was soon controlled and diverted into a system of irrigation canals as part of a plan to boost agriculture in the Tajik Republic. Food production had limited economic significance for Soviet industrialisation plans, so agricultural production was focused mainly on cotton—a crop that required significant amounts of irrigation in the arid region. [Source: “Tajikistan: Political and Social History” by Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer, Australia National University, 2013 ]

“One of the main requirements for the labour-intensive projects of building irrigation canals and farming cotton was a large pool of workers. This necessitated the massive in-migration of people from throughout Tajikistan and beyond. Since the economic potential of the mountains and foothills of Tajikistan was quite limited, people from these areas were selected as the primary core of migrants. The main groups of settlers were drawn, often forcefully, from the mountain valleys of Qarotegin (now known as ‘Rasht’) and Darvoz, as well as from the foothills of the Kulob region. Here in the valley they, and other outsiders (for example, Pamiris, Russians and others), were settled into the Soviet collective farms that were a common feature throughout the rural areas of the Tajik Soviet Socialist Republic (hereinafter Tajik SSR) and the rest of the USSR.

“Two waves of resettlement took place between 1926–29 and 1933–37 whereby some 30 000 peasant families from Gharm, Uroteppa (Istaravshon), Panjakent, Gorno-Badakhshan, Hisor, Kulob and Ferghana, as well as those returning from Afghanistan, were forcibly moved to develop virgin lands in the Qurghonteppa okrug, only sparsely populated by Uzbek nomadic tribes.This major demographic undertaking was presented by the Soviet authorities as ‘rectifying the historical injustice emanating from the Emirate’s feudal policy towards the Tajik people, which had been pushed into the mountains’. In reality the forcible resettlement of people to the south of Tajikistan was primarily to facilitate the construction of irrigation works and the production of cotton. The Soviet resettlement policies in the Qurghonteppa Province (including the Vakhsh Valley) were clearly part of its strategy to boost agriculture, particularly cotton. The result in the Qurghonteppa region was the construction of thousands of kilometres of irrigation canals as part of the Vakhsh Valley irrigation system that started in 1931. After this time numerous groups and individuals arrived in the region to work on the construction of the canals and in the cultivation of cotton. Border issues also played a role in population transfers, as, starting in the early 1930s, tens of thousands of households in southern Tajikistan were moved by the state to southern frontier regions to assist in securing the Afghan–Soviet border regions.The policies of resettlement into the valleys, which make up only 7 per cent of the territory of Tajikistan, resulted in the density of the population exceeding the capacity of the land to support that population. Niyazi notes that in the 1920s approximately 70 per cent of the population of Tajikistan was living in the foothills and mountains. The contemporary situation has been reversed and now 70 per cent of the population lives in the lowlands.”

Tajik Republic Economy

Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer wrote: “Returns on capital in Tajikistan were 10 per cent below the USSR’s average. Since 1968, the volume of incomplete construction constantly exceeded that of absorbed capital investment. Insufficient attention to infrastructure development and reliance on an expensive imported workforce also impeded Tajikistan’s economic performance. [Source: “Tajikistan: Political and Social History” by Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer, Australia National University, 2013 ]

“Throughout the Soviet period, Tajikistan had a negative trade balance with other republics. Additionally, Tajikistan received substantial cash infusions from Moscow. Critics of the command economy cited Tajikistan as evidence that ‘administrative redistribution and non-equivalent exchange, “brotherly help”, have created conditions in which it is economically more feasible to be backward and ask for assistance, than to work better’.

“A Western author, analysing budgetary practices in the centre–periphery relationship in both Soviet and post-Soviet times, has judged that the fiscal system in the former Soviet Union was ‘not truly a “system”, but rather a series of ad hoc bargained agreements, non-transparent at best, whose effects and incentives are not well understood’. It is safe to assume, however, that tax-sharing schemes and direct, centralised subsidies constituted two major elements in Soviet fiscal federalism.”

Impact of Soviet Economic Development on Tajikistan

Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer wrote: “The Soviet system offered no substantial incentives to technical personnel and skilled workers employed in more sophisticated branches of industry. Additionally, it strongly encouraged the influx of indigenous cadres into bureaucracy, academia, arts communities and other non-productive spheres. It has been observed that such a skewed arrangement in Tajikistan was made possible due to the fact that practically all national income produced in the region is utilised in the non-productive sphere, and expenditure on national economy is footed by the Centre. This ‘benevolent’ economic regime provides for the level of life comparable with that of the population of the industrialised regions. Henceforth, as a rule, indigenous people choose agriculture or the services sector to work in. [Source: “Tajikistan: Political and Social History” by Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer, Australia National University, 2013 ]

Consequently, not only were opportunities for inter-ethnic socialisation ‘below the expected level for an otherwise “integrated international work force”’, but eventually a binary pattern of settling began to evolve in Tajikistan, whereby the two largest distinctive groups of the populace—industrial and white-collar workers living in some 70 cities and towns, and peasants inhabiting 3500 villages—differed from one another quite substantially in a whole range of parameters: ethnic composition, culture, religious observance, level of education, and even language.

“The salient ethnic division of labour quickly became a characteristic feature of Tajikistan’s economy. Its dualism also found reflection in the fact that right from the start the economy was geared to meet the needs of the All-Union markets. From the 1940s to the 1980s, republican authorities controlled only one-tenth of the volume of industrial output in their territory; generally, it was up to central ministries in Moscow to determine what and how much should be produced in Tajikistan. As one Tajik scholar cautiously remarked in the early 1970s, industry in that republic ‘is characterised by the lack of correspondence between production profiles of a significant number of enterprises and the structure of demands of the republic and adjacent districts’. The level of economic integration amongst regions in Tajikistan remained low. Soviet planning practices resulted in paradoxical situations—for example, in the 1960s, three-quarters of the republic’s light industry was located in the northern Leninobod oblast and the bulk of its output, primarily textiles, was exported to other Soviet republics; at the same time, the southern regions had to import fabrics from European Russia, more than 4000 km away. Similarly, the textile combine at Uroteppa had to import 95 per cent of raw materials from Uzbekistan, although nearby districts could have provided an almost unlimited supply of cotton.

“The ‘predilection in Soviet planning towards overconcentration and monopoly production (i.e., localising all of the USSR’s output of a particular product at one or a few production sites)’ is a well-known phenomenon. The pronounced emphasis on cotton-growing in Tajikistan was caused by two major factors: a) optimal climatic conditions, and b) Moscow’s relentless efforts to achieve self-sufficiency in this strategic commodity. Generally, this task had been accomplished by about 1950, when the Soviet Union gathered five times more raw cotton than imperial Russia had in 1913. The ‘cottonisation’ of Tajikistan resulted in a dramatic decline of staple crops and a growing dependence on food imports from other parts of the USSR. Until 1958, cotton enjoyed very favourable terms of trade compared with other agricultural products. In the early 1950s, for instance, grain and meat producers in the USSR would receive less than one-seventh of the world price, whereas the government purchased cotton at a rate that was 30 per cent above the international price. As a result, Tajikistan’s agricultural income grew impressively. The fixed capital of the republic’s kolkhozes (collective farms), which included houses, cinemas, hospitals, kindergartens and other institutions of social infrastructure on top of the productive base, increased fifteen-fold between 1940 and 1958.Between 1954 and 1955, the state budget allocated funds for the construction of 38 schools in Tajikistan; at the same time, 119 schools were built using money from local collective farms.

“The labour-intensive character of cotton cultivation helped to absorb the consequences of high population growth. During the first three decades of its existence as a Soviet state, Tajikistan offered plentiful corroboration to the following conclusion made for the entire region: “Apart from raw cotton and cotton fibre, Tajikistan exported a variety of ores and ore concentrates—most notably, rare earths, zinc, lead, mercury, silver and gold. In the 1940s, rich uranium deposits in the Leninobod oblast began to be exploited. Production of fissile materials at the mammoth VOSTOKREDMET plant situated in the town of Chkalovsk played a crucial role in the success of the Soviet nuclear program.”

“In the prewar period, Tajikistan registered an average annual industrial growth of 9 per cent, and progress in the production of basic commodities continued. The initial great surge in the industrialisation of Tajikistan slowed markedly, however, in the 1950s. As a result, in 1960 it remained the second least-industrialised republic in the Soviet Union (after Moldova) as far as the structure of employment was concerned: only 18.2 per cent of those employed worked in industry compared with the USSR’s mean of 35 per cent. All the same, the suggestion that comparatively low levels of urbanisation and industrial participation could serve as indicators of inappropriate economic development and inadequate standards of living should be treated with a degree of caution. The peculiar economic system that had emerged in Tajikistan was the result of Moscow’s deliberate policy of the All-Union division of labour, and for quite a few decades this worked satisfactorily, considering that ‘the nationalities of Soviet Central Asia had achieved living standards, insofar as these may be expressed by wages, health and educational opportunity, somewhat lower than those of the European USSR, but a great deal higher than those of their independent neighbours’. Its continuous functioning, however, depended on two crucial factors: a) the centre’s ability to transfer the amount of resources necessary to meet the demands of the growing population of the republic in exchange for raw materials, and b) the availability of natural conditions, especially fertile land and water, to sustain extensive growth of the cotton-based economy.”

Negative Impact of Central Planning on the Tajik Republic’s Economy

In the case of Tajikistan, the most acute problems of the Soviet period time were: 1) the continuing demographic explosion; 2) the inability of the centralised planned economy to sustain steady growth; 3) the declining living standards of the population; 4) the decaying environment.

Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer wrote: “Following incorporation into the Russian empire, Tajikistan experienced a demographic explosion: its annual growth between 1870 and 1917 was estimated at 1.2 to 1.5 per cent, compared with a meagre 0.2 per cent in the first half of the nineteenth century.7 This tendency gained further momentum under Soviet rule. By the mid 1970s, Tajikistan had overtaken all other republics of the USSR in terms of birth rate, which, coupled with its low mortality rate, gave it the highest natural growth in the Soviet Union. [Source: “Tajikistan: Political and Social History” by Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer, Australia National University, 2013 ]

“With its population doubling every 20 years, and reserves of cultivable land all but exhausted, the demographic pressure came to be felt in Tajikistan in no uncertain way. It has been estimated that in the predominantly peasant Central Asian society, an allotment of 0.28 ha of arable land per person is required to guarantee reproduction on a simple scale. The corresponding figure for Tajikistan was considerably lower, and, generally, it was incapable of producing enough food to meet domestic demand. The south-western Qurghonteppa region was particularly inauspicious demographically: by 1989 its population density had reached 91.7 people per square kilometre—2.5 times the average for Tajikistan and far ahead of the second-most densely populated area, Leninobod (59.5).

“Even at the height of Soviet rule, regulation of land allotments at the local level (village or kolkhoz) tended to generate tension. An account of the 1983 gathering of some 6000 inhabitants of the village of Surkh in northern Tajikistan, who had assembled to decide upon redistribution of parcels of privately held land, stated that, despite the presence of district party and soviet officials, ‘there were moments when the discussion seemed to have become unmanageable. The strain began to tell, and nerves gave way.’ Six years later the same village and three other settlements of the Isfara raion found themselves in the epicentre of land disputes with adjacent districts of Kyrgyzstan. In July 1989 thousands of Tajiks and Kyrgyzs clashed, one person was killed and 27 were injured or wounded; it took the leaders of the two republics and their superiors in Moscow more than one month to quell the ‘Isfara–Batken incident’.

“The policy of economic development based primarily on rapid agricultural growth that had been imposed on Tajikistan by planning authorities in Moscow was not conducive to the migration of people from the countryside. In fact, in the postwar period the movement to urban centres was constantly declining: in 1960, 1 per cent of Tajikistan’s rural population chose to settle in cities; in 1970, 0.8 per cent; and in 1976, 0.7 per cent. In later years a process of real de-urbanisation became evident in the republic—an unprecedented phenomenon in the USSR. The share of city-dwellers dropped from 35 per cent in 1979 to 32 in 1990; in 1991 for the first time there was an absolute decline in the urban population.”

Reasons for Economic Decline in Tajikistan Under the Soviets

Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer wrote: Tajik experts have offered the following explanations for the weak migratory mobility of the agricultural population: 1) skill levels are too low for industrial employment; 2) large family size and high birth rates create problems in finding adequate housing and childcare facilities in cities; 3) inadequate knowledge of Russian complicates the acquisition of ‘city professions’; 4) strong urban–rural ties are a disincentive to move.” [Source: “Tajikistan: Political and Social History” by Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer, Australia National University, 2013 ]

“it appears that at least two other fundamental factors are responsible for the laggard country-to-town migration. First, the Soviet system did not provide sufficient remuneration to industrial workers or skilled managers. Indeed, it would be very hard for a Tajik family with half a dozen children to survive on a bare salary. The story of a qualified builder who left Dushanbe, where he earned a decent wage of 350 roubles a month, for a remote village where he would get 70 roubles and still ‘feel happy’, was a typical one. In the countryside a private plot generated the bulk of family income. A certain agronomist in 1981 received 2280 roubles in wages; his 50 apple trees fetched him another 15 000, and his two cows and some sheep saved him the trouble of buying meat and dairy in state shops. The second factor is rooted in the traditionalism of Tajik society. As Aziz Niyazi has observed, ‘young people are not at all enthusiastic about moving to towns, notwithstanding the fact that incomes in the rural areas are low. Many of the young people are bound by family ties, as it is not easy to get parental consent for moving away.’ In a patriarchal family every pair of working hands means additional output from its privately owned strip of land, even more so in a situation where tractors and other means of mechanisation are not readily available. Additionally, industrial employment is not a prestigious occupation for the eponymous population, who prefer to work in agriculture, trade and services.

“Not surprisingly, a survey conducted in the early 1980s in Tajikistan revealed that 65 per cent of rural young people wanted to stay in the countryside, only 15 per cent wanted to move to the capital city, and 8 per cent to other towns. In 1986, as many as 25.7 per cent of the working-age population may have been unemployed; the figure for rural areas was higher—probably in the region of 35 per cent. An estimate made in 1985 suggested that 7.1 million people would have to leave Central Asia before 2000 simply to maintain its existing level of national income per able-bodied inhabitant. Admittedly, Tajikistan fared badly even compared with its neighbours: ‘an absolute majority of the republic’s population does not accept even modest attempts aimed at the reduction of population growth … The demographic situation in Tajikistan has passed the critical level and is no longer under control.’

The leadership of Tajikistan was reluctant to acknowledge even the existence of such a problem. Not until 1985 did Rahmon Nabiyev, first secretary of the CPT CC, publicly express concern at the fact that the growth of agricultural production in the republic lagged hopelessly behind population growth. The first comprehensive set of legislation dealing with family planning was passed only in June 1988. The centre remained equally incapable of dealing with the growing demographic pressure in the republic. A low-key program to move 15 000 Tajiks to sparsely populated areas of the USSR, the Khabarovsk krai in particular, was aborted soon after its inception in 1983 due to the unwillingness of the would-be settlers to leave their birthplaces.

“From the 1960s to the 1980s Tajikistan, like any other republic of the USSR, succumbed to two tendencies in the autarkic Soviet economy. On the one hand, the planning centre gradually lost its ability to control all the links in the economic mechanism due to its sheer expansion and complexity. On the other hand, branch ministries, most importantly ‘base supermonopolies’, became ever more powerful in strategic decision-making. The ideals of the comprehensive, integrated development of Central Asia, if they ever existed at all, were eventually sacrificed to the interests of ministerial lobbyists in Moscow who craved unlimited government allocations for grandiose but hardly feasible projects in the region.

“In order to cope with the burgeoning population growth it would have been natural to build low-cost and labour-intensive production enterprises in Tajikistan to utilise local resources. In the 1970s, investment of 1 million roubles could create more than 600 seamstress posts, 380–450 in the leather, textile or footwear industries, or 165 in food or cotton-processing, versus only 35–40 in the aluminium or chemical industries. Yet it was precisely the last two that received rising capital allocations from Moscow. Tajik economists cautiously expressed their astonishment: ‘In recent years in the republic, as compared to the rest of the USSR, more capital-intensive and less labour-intensive industrial development has been in evidence. Generally speaking, this contradicts the strategy of industrial development of the republic which is based on the necessity to put emphasis on labour-intensive and capital-saving manufacturing.’

“Central planners and ministerial heavyweights in Moscow continued to pursue the fetish of physical economic growth at all costs, primarily through inflating the capital stock. The creation of the South Tajik Territorial Production Complex (STTPC) is probably the best illustration of the inefficient planning and investment and total disregard of local agendas that were inherent in the Soviet command-administrative system of economic management. The STTPC, conceived in the early 1960s, was to become the new industrial centre of Tajikistan. It embraced 37 per cent of Tajikistan’s territory with 64 per cent of its population. Utilisation of the area’s enormous hydro-power potential formed the centrepiece of the design. In the initial stage, covering the period until 1985, the gigantic Norak hydro-electric power station was the major element of the STTPC, with an aluminium smelter in the city of Tursunzoda, an electrochemical plant in Yovon and a fertiliser combine in Vakhsh, as well as 46 other enterprises reliant on its electricity. Poor interdepartmental communication and lack of a clear-cut construction program plagued the project from the start.

“It took the Ministry of Energy of the USSR 22 years instead of 10, and 2.5 times the originally allocated money, to build the Norak station, with a capacity of 2.7 million kW. In 1981, however, the ministry started work on an even more powerful (3.2 million kW) hydro power station at Roghun. Three years later the construction manager exclaimed in frustration that it might take up to a hundred years, rather than the planned 12, to complete the project, but it did not really matter; it would be impossible anyway to use surplus electricity, as projects implemented by other ministries were in even worse shape. The smelter in Tursunzoda, with a capacity of 517 000 t of primary aluminium a year, was built between 1965 and 1984, and proved to be, at the time, a disaster: ‘People at the plant say that their aluminium costs more than the gold extracted from the bottom of the Zeravshan river … just two years after start-up, the plant is already in urgent need of major overhaul and reconstruction.’ The factory in Yovon, commissioned in 1981 instead of 1974, was operating at 37 per cent of its nominal capacity, and in 1983 its production costs were twice its revenues. Despite all this waste and inefficiency, money continued to flow freely from Moscow: from 1965 through to 1980, annual investment in all industries in Tajikistan rose from 155 to 320 million roubles, ‘with two-thirds of fixed assets, output, and labour force represented by the South Tajik Complex’.”

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Text Sources: New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Times of London, Lonely Planet Guides, Library of Congress, U.S. government, Compton’s Encyclopedia, The Guardian, National Geographic, Smithsonian magazine, The New Yorker, Time, Newsweek, Reuters, AP, AFP, Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic Monthly, The Economist, Foreign Policy, Wikipedia, BBC, CNN, and various books, websites and other publications.

Last updated April 2016

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