Based on first-hand research conducted by the Moscow Centre for Civilizational and Regional Studies, this book documents the findings of one of the first authoritative studies on the newly independent states of Central Asia – Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kirgizia and Tadjikistan. Focusing on the unprecedented challenges facing these nascent countries, it examines the political events and socio-economic changes which followed the disintegration of the Soviet Union by analysing the difficulties of state-building and the dramatic social upheavals experienced by these republics.
The book also covers the path of economic growth in the 1990s by examining the recession of 1991-1995 and the increasing income disparity between the affluent minority and the impoverished majority. The continuing socio-political and inter-ethnic tensions in the region are also covered in some detail, as is the relationship between the new states and Russia. Attention is further drawn to the causes and outcomes of the civil war in Tadjikistan as well as the growing international competition for access to the natural resources of the Central Asian countries.
This work will be of particular use to the student of economics and politics of Central Asia and will also provide great insight to business professionals and other readers interested in the progress of post-Soviet states.
About the Contributors
Alexei Vassiliev is Honorary President of the Institute for African Studies at the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS). He is the author of over forty books, including the critically acclaimed The History of Saudi Arabia, winner of the Choice Outstanding Academic Book Award, Central Asia: Political and Economic Challenges in the Post-Soviet Era, and King Faisal of Saudi Arabia: Personality. Faith and Times. The recipient of many awards, he is also Editor-in-chief of Asia and Africa Today, and has been the primary editor of about 50 monographs, including the two-volume Encyclopedia of Africa. His works have been translated into over 14 languages. He is a member of the International Security Section of the Security Council of the Russian Federation and of the Foreign Policy Council of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
'An informative and original book ... Must reading for upper-division undergraduate, graduate students, and scholars of Contemporary Central Asia.'