One of Uzbekistan's most abundant and strategic resources is gold. Before 1992, Uzbekistan accounted for about one-third of Soviet gold production, at a time when the Soviet Union ranked third in world gold production. The Muruntau Gold Mine, about 400 kilometers northwest of Tashkent in the Qizilqum Desert, is estimated to be the largest gold mine in the world, and other gold reserves are located in the Chadaq area of the Fergana Valley, on the southern slopes of the Qurama Mountains. In 1992, a reported 80 tons of gold were mined in Uzbekistan, making it the eighth largest producer of gold in the world. Fluorospar, the most important source of fluorine, is mined at Tuytepa between Olmaliq and Tashkent. In the region of Olmaliq, southeast of Tashkent, are deposits of copper, zinc, lead, tungsten, and molybdenum that are used in the well-developed metallurgical processing industries centered in northeastern Uzbekistan. Uranium is mined and processed on the slopes of the Chatkal and Qurama ranges that surround the Fergana Valley.
|Country Studies main page | Uzbekistan Country Studies main page|