About Russia


General Information


Northern Asia (that part west of the Urals is sometimes included with Europe),
bordering the Arctic Ocean, between Europe and the North Pacific Ocean

Map references:

Total area:

17,075,200 sq km
land area:
16,995,800 sq km
Comparative area:
slightly more than 1.8 times the size of the US

Land boundaries:
Total 20,139 km, Azerbaijan 284 km, Belarus 959 km, China (southeast) 3,605 km, China (south) 40 km, Estonia 290 km, Finland 1,313 km, Georgia 723 km, Kazakhstan 6,846 km, North Korea 19 km, Latvia 217 km, Lithuania (Kaliningrad Oblast) 227 km, Mongolia 3,441 km, Norway 167 km, Poland (Kaliningrad Oblast) 432 km, Ukraine 1,576 km

37,653 km

Maritime claims:
Continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
Exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Territorial sea: 12 nm

International disputes:
Inherited disputes from former USSR including: sections of the boundary with China; islands of Etorofu, Kunashiri, and Shikotan and the Habomai group occupied by the Soviet Union in 1945, administered by Russia, claimed by Japan; maritime dispute with Norway over portion of the Barents Sea; Caspian Sea boundaries are not yet determined; potential dispute with Ukraine over Crimea; Estonia claims over 2,000 sq km of Russian territory in the Narva and Pechora regions; the Abrene section of the border ceded by the Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic to Russia in 1944; has made no territorial claim in Antarctica (but has reserved the right to do so) and does not recognize the claims of any other nation.

Ranges from steppes in the south through humid continental in much of European Russia; sub-arctic in Siberia to tundra climate in the polar north; winters vary from cool along Black Sea coast to frigid in Siberia; summers vary from warm in the steppes to cool along Arctic coast.

Broad plain with low hills west of Urals; vast coniferous forest and tundra in Siberia; uplands and mountains along southern border regions.

Natural resources:
Wide natural resource base including major deposits of oil, natural gas, coal, and many strategic minerals, timber.
Formidable obstacles of climate, terrain, and distance hinder exploitation of natural resources

Land use:
Arable land: 8%
Permanent crops: NEGL%
Meadows and pastures: 5%
Forest and woodland: 45%
Other: 42%

Irrigated land: 56,000 sq km (1992)

Current issues: Air pollution from heavy industry, emissions of coal-fired electric plants, and transportation in major cities; industrial and agricultural pollution of inland waterways and sea coasts; deforestation; soil erosion; soil contamination from improper application of agricultural chemicals; scattered areas of sometimes intense radioactive contamination.

Natural hazards: Permafrost over much of Siberia is a major impediment to development; volcanic activity in the Kuril Islands; volcanoes and earthquakes on the Kamchatka Peninsula.

International agreements: party to - Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Antarctic Treaty, Climate Change, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Wetlands, Whaling; signed, but not ratified - Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Biodiversity, Law of the Sea.

Largest country in the world in terms of area but unfavorably located in relation to major sea lanes of the world; despite its size, much of the country lacks proper soils and climates (either too cold or too dry) for agriculture.

Russian Federation People


149,909,089 (July 1995 est.)
Note: official Russian statistics put the population at 148,200,000 for 1994

Age structure:
0-14 years: 22% (female 16,208,640; male 16,784,017)
15-64 years: 66% (female 50,711,209; male 48,247,101)
65 years and over: 12% (female 12,557,447; male 5,400,675) (July 1995 est.)

Population growth rate:

0.2% (1995 est.)
Note: official Russian statistics put the population growth rate at -6.0% for 1994

Birth rate:

12.64 births/1,000 population (1995 est.)
Note: Official Russian statistics put the birth rate at 9.5 births per l,000 population for 1994

Death rate:

11.36 deaths/1,000 population (1995 est.)

Note: Official Russian statistics put the death rate at 15.5 deaths per l,000 population in 1994

Net migration rate:

0.7 migrant(s)/1,000 population (1995 est.)

Infant mortality rate:

21.4 deaths/1,000 live births (2000 est.)

Note: official Russian statistics put the infant mortality rate at 19.9 deaths per l,000 live births in 1994

Life expectancy at birth:

Total population: 69.1 years
Male: 64.1 years
Female: 74.35 years (1995 est.)
Note: official Russian statistics put life expectancy at birth as 64 years for total population in 1994

Total fertility rate:

1.82 children born/woman (1995 est.)

Noun: Russian(s)

Ethnic divisions:
Russian 81.5%, Tatar 3.8%, Ukrainian 3%, Chuvash 1.2%, Bashkir 0.9%, ByeloRussian 0.8%, Moldavian 0.7%, other 8.1%

Russian Orthodox, Muslim, other
Russian, other
Age 8 and over can read and write (1989)
total population: 98%
Male: 100%
Female: 97%

Labor force:

85 million (1993)
By occupation: production and economic services 83.9%, government 16.1%

Miscellaneous Information

Home voltage is 220 V (AC), 50 Hz.


The national Russian monetary unit is rouble (RUR). One rouble is worth 100 kopecks. In Russia, payment for all goods and services is to be made in the national currency, travelers check, or by credit cards.

For more information on currency click here.


Prices for international: letters postcards
Air mail RUR 14.00 RUR 10.00
Surface mail RUR 12.00 RUR 8.00
within Russia RUR 3.25 RUR 2.45


How to make a long-distance phone call on credit to any city within the territory of Russia and the CIS:
dial "8"; upon receiving the dial tone, dial the code of the city and the number required.

Telephone codes of some Russian cities
St. Petersburg-812, Kaliningrad-0112, Moscow-095, Arkhangelsk-818, Murmansk-8152, Pskov-81122, Novgorod-816,Vyborg-278, Petrozavodsk-814. Information: 070

How to make an international telephone call:

dial "8"; upon receiving the dial tone, dial "10", the country code, the telephone area (city) code and the number required.

Codes of some foreign Countries:
United Kingdom 44, USA 1, Finland 358, Germany 49, Sweden 46, France 33, Italy39, Japan 81.
Information: 070


If you urgently need a medical assistance, you are to dial the 03 phone number (24 hours a day). Any medical institution must help you or call for an ambulance with a medical team. When delivered to a hospital, you have to show your medical insurance policy.

Along with the state medical institutions, there are also private clinics. To find out more information about Medical / Dental Clinics click here.

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