Uzbekistan is a doubly landlocked country in Central Asia. It is a unitary, constitutional, presidential republic, comprising 12 provinces, 1 autonomous republic, and 1 capital city. Uzbekistan is bordered by five countries: Kazakhstan and the Aral Sea to the north; Tajikistan to the south-east; Kyrgyzstan to the northeast; Afghanistan to the south; and Turkmenistan to the southwest.
Uzbekistan is officially a democratic, secular, constitutional republic with a diverse cultural heritage. The country's official language is Uzbek, a Turkic language spoken natively by approximately 85% of the population; however, Russian remains in widespread use. Uzbeks constitute 81% of the population, followed by Russians (5.4%), Tajiks (4.0%), Kazakhs (3.0%), and others (6.5%). Uzbekistan is a member of the CIS, OSCE, UN, and the SCO.
Uzbekistan has the fourth largest gold deposits in the world. The country mines 80 tons of gold annually, seventh in the world. Uzbekistan's copper deposits rank tenth in the world and its uranium deposits twelfth. The country's uranium production ranks seventh globally. The Uzbek national gas company, Uzbekneftegas, ranks 11th in the world in natural gas production with an annual output of 60 to 70 billion cubic meters. The country has significant untapped reserves of oil and gas: there are 194 deposits of hydrocarbons in Uzbekistan, including 98 condensate and natural gas deposits and 96 gas condensate deposits.
The largest corporations involved in Uzbekistan's energy sector are the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), Petronas, the Korea National Oil Corporation, Gazprom, Lukoil, and Uzbekneftegas.