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Aginsky-Buryat AO

Aginsky-Buryat AOThe ginsky Buryat-Mongolian national Okrug was formed in 1937 on the basis of the Aginsky Aimak of the Buryat-Mongolian Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic and then was handed over to the Chita area. In 1958 it changed the name to ginsky Buryat and became autonomous region under the Constitution of the USSR of 1977. In June 1993 the Supreme Council of Buryatia recognized the transfer of the territory to the Chita and Irkutsk areas illegal, but this decision had no consequences for district.

The territory is 19 000 sq. km. The population, 79 000 inhabitants (city - 32.4%), consists mostly of Buryats, Russian, Ukrainians, Tatars, etc. The Buryats are indigenous population. The average density is 3.3 person per 1 sq. km. The main part of the population live in the Aga river basin and along the railway. In the west, density is 1.5 person per 1 sq. km.

Buryats (former nomads) converted to the settled way of life during the years of the Soviet power. The agricultural population (81%) prevails now. Two settlements of city type - ginskoe and gitu - are the important trans-shipment points on the railway for the inward cargoes. The district is divided into 3 areas, it includes 4 settlements of city type and 34 rural administrations. Population density is 4.2 person per 1 sq. km.

Aginskoe - settlement of city type - is the administrative centre of Okrug (9300 inhabitants, 6286 km east from Moscow).

The climate is sharp continental (+18?C in July, -24?C in January). Precipitations are about 400 mm per year. Soils are limed frozen-taiga, gray forest soils in mountains, carbonate chestnut soils and chernozem on steppe plains. About 30% of territory is covered with forests. The Okrug has cattle-breeding (sheep, cattle, horses); grain, forage crops.

The industry is basically connected with processing of local agricultural raw materials. Logging is carried out on the west of the Okrug (100 thousand cubic meters per year). The timber industry is located in Ara-Il, Duldurga, and Aginskoe. The largest new construction is Orlovsky Ore Mining and Processing Enterprise (tantalum).

The east part of the Okrug is crossed with the railway. A motorway passes through rgaley, ginskoe, goituy and Zugol. In the western part of the Okrug there is a motorway Darasun-Duldurga-Khapcheranga. The general extent of highways is 970 km, with hard surface - 300 km.

Aginsky Buryat Okrug is located in the southern part of Transbaikalia, between Onon and Ingoda rivers. On the territory there are the Aga river, hence the name of the Okrug, and the Onon river.

In the northwest the Okrug is surrounded by the lkhanaisky mountain range, the highest point of which is 1663 meters above the sea level. Alkhanaisky reserve is now created here. The faunafauna of the reserve is various. Squirrels, hares, bears, foxes, corsaks, sables, muskrats, musk-deers live here. The climate is sharp continental, severe. Soils are various; chernozem, loams and sand prevail. In the Okrug the Siberian cedar, pine, Labrador tea, birch, fir, aspen, elm, and bird cherry grow. There are more than hundreds of mineral springs-arshans, on the basis of which popular preventoriums "Uksakhay" and "Zymka" are formed.

Lamaism - a branch of the Buddhismis - is the main religion of aboriginals. The Orthodoxy is distributed mostly among Russian population. They have two orthodox temples, ginsky and Zugolsky datsans, built in XIX century. They are still in operation.

The mining industry is represented by the Orlovsky Ore Mining and Processing Enterprise specializing in extraction and processing of tungsten and tantalum and the Ureisky Open-pit Mine, specializing in extraction of coal. Bakeries, confectioneries and sausage shops, meatpacking plants, dairy plants and mills represent the processing industry. The industry of building materials is represented by lime, brick and timber enterprises.

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