The history of human settlements in this territory dates back to the VIII century BC. Later in the same area there existed a medieval state of the Volga Bulgars. In the XIII century Bulgaria was conquered by the Mongols, and after the partition of Genghis Khan’s empire, has been included in the Ulus of Jochi (Golden Horde). At the beginning of the XV century Ulu-Muhammad Khan declared independence of Kazan Khanate from the Horde. The new state started the establishment of independent relations with Moscow. Pro-Moscow party was strong in Kazan, as part of the local merchants had close trade relations with Moscow, but also due to the fact that Moscow had a great influence on the policy of Kazan and often intervened to support her friendly candidates in their fight for the khan’s throne. In the XVI century during the reign of Ivan IV in 1552, Kazan was finally conquered by Moscow and incorporated into the Russian Kingdom.
As a part of Russia Kazan was first named the Kazan Kingdom, and later as Kazan province. The area did not have self-government: the head of the province was the governor appointed directly by the Emperor. Prior to the year 1920 the territory of the present-day Republic of Tatarstan has been never, either officially or unofficially, named «Tataria» or «Tatarstan».
After the revolution, on the initiative of Lenin on May 27, 1920 a decree has been signed on the establishment of the Tatar Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic within the RSFSR. After the demise of the Soviet Union, Tatarstan became a part of the modern Russian state. Since August 30, 1990 its official name was Tatar Soviet Socialist Republic (as well as — the Republic of Tatarstan), and since February 7, 1992 — the Republic of Tatarstan (Tatarstan).
The Republic of Tatarstan, Tatarstan (in Tatar language — Татарстан Республикасы) is the subject of the Russian Federation. According to the Constitution of Russia the republic is included in the Volga Federal District established by the Decree of the Central Executive Committee and the Peoples Commissars Committee on May 27, 1920 as the Tatar Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic.
Its capital is the city of Kazan. It shares borders with Kirov, Ulyanovsk, Samara, Orenburg regions, the Republic of Bashkortostan, Mari El, Udmurt and Chuvash republics.
Tatarstan is located in the center of the Russian Federation on the East European Plain at the confluence of two major rivers — Volga and Kama. Kazan is situated 797 km to the east of Moscow.
The total area of Tatarstan is 67,836 km ?.
The length of the territory of the republic is 290 km from north to south and 460 km from west to east.
Its territory features a plain located in the forest and forest-steppe zone with small hills on the right bank of the Volga and the south- east of the country.
90 % of the area lies at an altitude of no more than 200 meters above sea level.
More than 16 % of the territory is covered by forests consisting mostly of hardwood types of trees (oak, lime tree, birch, and aspen), coniferous trees are represented by pine and spruce. Local fauna includes 430 species of vertebrates and hundreds of different species of invertebrates.
The population of the republic according to Rosstat in 2013 is 3,822,038 people.
The population density in 2013 comprises 56.33 people per sq. km. The urban population in 2013 is 75.9 %. The Republic of Tatarstan is inhabited by 115 nations.
Traditional confessions in the Republic are Islam and Orthodox Christianity. Tatars and Bashkirs (i.e. about half of the population) are Muslim.
Another part of the population: Russians, Chuvashs, Maris, Udmurts, Mordovians are Christians of the Orthodox Christianity. There are also Catholicism, Protestantism, Judaism and other faiths represented in Tatarstan.
Balance of the interests between the two major religions and equality of all religions before the law is the basis of inter-religious harmony in the republic.
The Republic of Tatarstan possesses an extensive transportation network, which includes all types of land, air and water transport.
This is due to the favorable geographical position of the Republic of Tatarstan. It is located at the intersection of the main transportation and economic links directions of the mining areas in the Urals and Siberia and manufacturing industrial centers in the center of the country, as well as in the direction from the Urals to the Middle Volga, and then further to the Southern Federal District, and from the Centre to the southern agricultural zone of the Volga region.
The length of public roads of republican and federal importance, passing through the territory of the republic, comprises 14.5 thousand km, including 1.066 km of the federal importance roads.
The railway network covers the territory of the 19 republican districts. It is noteworthy, that the railways, as compared to other modes of transport, take the first place in the freight transportation.
Railway transport activity in the Republic of Tatarstan is represented by the of Kazan Branch of Gorky railway line (branch of «Russian Railways», JSC), Kama Representation of Kuibyshev railway line (branch of «Russian Railways», JSC) in the RT, and three enterprises of industrial railway transport: Kazan cross-industry enterprise «Promzheldortrans», «Zheleznodorozhnik» and «Promtrans -A».
There are two enterprises in the republic engaged in passenger transportation by water transport: «Kazan river passenger agency» LLC and «River port Naberezhnye Chelny», which is the branch organization of «TAIF- Magistral» LLC
Air transport in the Republic of Tatarstan is represented by the activity of three airports: «Kazan», «Bugulma» and «Begishevo». Currently 4 airlines basing in the republic are performing passenger transportation: «Airline» Tatarstan «OJSC, «Kazan Aviation Enterprise» JSC, «Airline Tulpar Air» LLC, OJSC «AK BARS AERO.»
Since 1990 three important documents have been adopted in the country: the Declaration of State Sovereignty, the Constitution and the Treaty on the Delimitation of Authority Matters and Mutual Delegation of Authorities with the Russian Federation. All three documents together make up not only the legal framework but also the foundation of political stability in the society, the basis of economic reforms.
In April 19, 2002 the State Council of Tatarstan adopted a new version of Constitution of the Republic. The Constitution proclaims that a person, his rights and freedoms are the supreme value, and the duty of the Republic of Tatarstan is to recognize, respect and protect the rights and freedoms of a man and a citizen. The Constitution of the Republic of Tatarstan fixed such principles as universal suffrage, freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, the ability to participate in political parties and organizations, etc.
Constitution of Tatarstan enshrines the separation of legislative, executive and judicial powers.
The Head of state and the highest official of the Republic of Tatarstan is the President (Rustam N. Minnikhanov). He heads the executive system of state power in the republic and manages the activities of the Cabinet of Ministers, the executive and administrative body of state power.
The Cabinet of Ministers is responsible to the President. The candidature of the Prime Minister shall be approved by the Parliament upon the proposal of the President of Tatarstan.
The highest representative and legislative body of the state power of the Republic of Tatarstan is the unicameral National Council (Parliament).
Local self-government is within its powers independently. Local bodies of self-government are not included in the system of state power bodies.
Judicial power is exercised by the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Tatarstan and the federal courts of general jurisdiction, the Arbitration Court of the Republic of Tatarstan and the justices of the peace. Judicial proceedings and documentation management in the courts are maintained in accordance with federal law.
The Republic of Tatarstan is one of the leading regions of the Russian Federation in sports.
The widespread creation of conditions for athletics, construction of sports facilities in Tatarstan became the foundation of a healthy lifestyle among the wide layers of population.
The sports infrastructure amounts to 9175 sports facilities. Almost all regions of the republic have modern sports facilities at their disposal for engaging in various sports activities.
Only the total number of ice palaces has reached 35 and this is the best index in the country.
Engagement of maximum number of citizens in physical culture and sport, provision of accessible and developed sports infrastructure, development of healthy lifestyle civic values in public are the priority direction in the development of physical culture and sports in the republic.
Mass sport in the republic is gaining more dynamic character; it is being actively promoted in education system and upbringing of the younger generation.
New forms of healthy lifestyle promotion are used for mass cultural work development among the population.
Games are held among the students of the republic, among the universities and the civil servants and municipal employees, including pensioners and the disabled people.
The most significant event in sporting life has been XXVII World Summer Universiade, held in Kazan in the summer of 2013. To host the Universiade, 2013 there has been involved 64 sports facilities, 30 of them being the objects of the new construction.
The major facilities built specifically for the competition:
• Football stadium for 45 thousand seats
• Palace of Water Sports
• Tennis Academy
• Martial Arts Palace «Ak Bars»
• Volleyball Centre «Saint- Petersburg»
• Center for boxing and table tennis
• Rowing channel on Lake Kaban.
Universiade in Kazan has become the most ambitious in the history of the World Student Games, the games which involved 7,980 athletes and 3,798 officials from 160 countries, including 663 athletes of the Russian team.
Investment climate in the Republic of Tatarstan
Investments in fixed capital
In January –June, 2013 investments in fixed capital have been used in the volume of 175,826.5 million rubles, or to 114.5 % as compared to January -June 2012.
48.6 % in the structure of investments in fixed assets of large and medium-size enterprises and organizations belong to the share of funds attracted in January –June, 2013, which is 2.7 % higher than the index of the same period last year.
The share of own funds of enterprises and organizations aimed at investment purposes amounted to 51.4 % (in January — September 2012 — 51.9 %), their volume has been mainly provided due to the profit and amortization expenses.
Investments in fixed assets have amounted to 175,826.5 million rubles, including:
• Manufacturing enterprises 54,784.6 mln.rub. (31.2 %);
• Services rendering 34,118.2 (19.4 %);
• Transport and communications 25,304.0 (14.4 %);
• Natural resources mining (22,218.0 million rubles — 12.6 %);
• Agriculture, hunting and forestry 6,378.8 (3.6%).
For 6 months in 2013 the economy of the Republic of Tatarstan has received 297,380.6 thousand U.S. dollars of foreign investments, which amounts to 101.9 % during the corresponding period of the last year.
Investments came from 22 countries. The most active investors were: Germany (their share in the total volume of foreign investments amounted to 52.1 %), the USA (16.6%) and the Netherlands (10.9 %).
The volume of accumulated foreign investments in the economy of the Republic of Tatarstan as of July 1, 2013 has amounted to 3,708,778.1 thousand dollars; received foreign investments: direct — 211,906.7 thousand dollars , others – 85,473.9 thousand dollars.
The Republic of Tatarstan is one of the most attractive regions for investment in Russia, due to the optimal combination of high investment potential and low investment risk. This is confirmed by international rating agencies data.
Foreign economic activity of the Republic of Tatarstan
In recent years, the world has witnessed the growth of international activity of federal state subjects.
The researchers note that this activity is spreading to the areas that previously have been the responsibility of Independent States — representation abroad, participation in international organizations and bodies. All mentioned above is typical for a number of the Russian Federation subjects, whose members have acquired the right to engage independently in international relations with foreign federations’ entities and actively use this right. An example of this is the Republic of Tatarstan, which has economic, scientific- technical and other links with more than 70 foreign countries and international institutions. In a number of countries (the U.S.A., France, Italy, Bulgaria, Hungary, Lithuania, and others) state power bodies of the Republic of Tatarstan and its legal entities have opened economic, trade and information representative offices. Tatarstan has signed agreements with Hungary, Lithuania, Greece, Turkey, Austria, and with the majority of the CIS countries.
Tatarstan is one of the most economically developed regions of Russia. The republic is located in the center of a large industrial zone of the Russian Federation, at the intersection of major highways connecting east and west, north and south of the country.
The Republic of Tatarstan is rich in natural resources, a strong and diversified industry, high intellectual potential and a skilled labor force.
The foreign trade turnover of Tatarstan in January – September 2013 amounted to 20.05 billion U.S. dollars, including export — 16.2 billion U.S. dollars, import — 3.85 billion U.S. dollars.
Compared to the same period last year, the turnover increased by 1.22 billion U.S. dollars (106.5 %), export decreased by 48.7 million U.S. dollars (100.3 %), import increased by 1.2 million U.S. dollars (143.6 %).
Traditionally, exports to major trading partners of the Republic of Tatarstan is represented mainly by the supply of crude oil (about 50 % of exports), oil products (over 30%), chemical products (about 11%), engineering products (about 6% of the exports value). Import was dominated by engineering products (about 73%).
Today Tatarstan collaborates with many regions of the world, actively participating in international trade: more than 100 countries develop trade relations with the republic.
In the implementation of international policy and foreign economic cooperation Tatarstan is focusing on the search for a reasonable balance between the Western and Eastern partners.
Along with the development of traditional multifaceted ties with Turkey, the republic is enhancing contacts with China, India, and South-East Asia.
At the same time, cooperation with the CIS countries in trade, economic and humanitarian spheres refers to the permanent priorities of the external activities of the republic.