Tajikistan is considered one of the most ancient states in the world. On the territory of this country, there was once a small part of the famous ancient eastern state of Sogdiana. Tajikistan is a landlocked country, and it is in Central Asia and covers an area of ​​143,100 squared km. As of 2018, the population of the country is 9 million people.

Tajikistan borders Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan in the west and north. China is the eastern neighbor. And in the south, the state border separates Tajikistan and Afghanistan.

The official language in the country is Tajik. Interestingly, until October 2009 in Tajikistan, the Russian language also had the status of the state language. However, for political reasons, in 2011, he was returned to the status of the "language of interethnic communication."

Today, the economy of Tajikistan is supported by the mining, metallurgical, chemical, construction, textile, and food industries. Large deposits of silver, gold, iron, lead, table salt, and other minerals were found on the country's territory. True, their extraction is complicated by a weak infrastructure due to the prevailing mountainous relief on the republic's territory.

Over the past decade, Tajikistan has made steady progress in reducing poverty and growing its economy. Between 2000 and 2018, the poverty rate fell from 83 percent of the population to 27.4 percent, while the economy grew at an average rate of 7 percent per year.

However, the rate of job creation has not kept pace with the growing population, leaving the economy vulnerable to external shocks, and the private sector’s role in the economy remains limited, contributing to only 13 percent of formal employment and 15 percent of total investments. Non-monetary poverty indicators in rural areas remain high, as only 36 percent of the population in rural regions has access to safe drinking water. Tajikistan scores 0.53 in the Human Capital Index, which is lower than the average for its region but higher than the average for its income group.


Country Context



Population, million


GDP, current US$ billion


GDP per capita, current US$


Life Expectancy at Birth, years (2018)


Source: World Bank data, www.worldbank.org


Tajikistan’s high vulnerability to climate change and natural disasters represents an additional challenge to successful economic management. Between 1992 and 2016, natural and climate-related disasters led to GDP losses of roughly US$1.8 billion, affecting almost 7 million people.

The National Development Strategy (NDS) to 2030 sets a target of increasing domestic incomes by up to 3.5 times by 2030 and reducing poverty by half. This target is achievable if Tajikistan transforms its current growth model and gives the private sector more opportunities to invest, create jobs, and contribute to the economy.

According to official statistics, GDP growth remained strong in 2019 at 7.5 percent. A jump in exports and a recovery in remittances helped narrow the current account deficit to an estimated 4.3 percent GDP in 2019. Export earnings rose by 9.4 percent, supported by higher shipments abroad of precious metals and electricity.

Except for two problem banks, the financial sector has continued on its recovery from the 2016 banking crisis, showing an improvement in the credit portfolio quality. The share of nonperforming loans stood at 26 percent at the end of 2019. The banking sector profitability also continued to improve, and the level of dollarization declined to 53 percent at the end of 2019 from a peak of 64 percent in 2015.

Structural challenges in the Tajik economy also weigh on the country’s development prospects. Governance issues in the state-owned enterprises—including in key sectors of the economy—present high quasi-fiscal risks and threaten the sustainability of public finances. Delays in implementing much-needed structural reforms to improve the business environment will continue to hinder private sector development.

The construction of the Rogun Hydropower Plant from budget proceeds continues to present a serious risk to macro-fiscal sustainability and to squeeze social spending further.

Tax reform efforts, the power utility rehabilitation program, and financial sector reform—if implemented successfully—could improve the country’s fiscal management and business environment over the medium term.

The Government could accelerate progress in reducing extreme poverty by expanding the TSA to those regions currently not covered by the program and augmenting the TSA to compensate poor households for utility tariff increases.