Role in the Soviet Economy
As part of the Soviet Union, Kyrgyzstan played a small but highly
integrated role in the centrally controlled economy. Figures for
1990 show that agriculturally the republic contributed 1 percent
or less of the total Soviet output of preserved vegetables, animal
fats, plant oils, and meat, and 3 percent of the total Soviet
output of beet sugar. Kyrgyzstan also produced small proportions
of Soviet wine products and tobacco. Industrially, the republic
supplied 1 to 2 percent of the Soviet Union's total output of
cotton cloth, silk cloth, linen, and woolen cloth, and an equal
proportion of ready-made clothing and shoes. Machine-assembly
plants, steel plants, motor-assembly plants, and miscellaneous
light industry contributed another 1 percent or less of the Soviet
total. The only energy resources that Kyrgyzstan contributed in
any volume were coal (0.5 percent of the Soviet total) and hydroelectric
power (0.8 percent). Kyrgyzstan's radio-assembly and other electronic
plants accounted for a small portion of the defense industry.
A torpedo-assembly plant was located on the shores of Ysyk-Köl.
One of the Soviet Union's two military airbases for the training
of foreign pilots was located outside Bishkek.
Kyrgyzstan's largest role in the Soviet economy was as a supplier
of minerals, especially antimony (in which the republic had a
near monopoly), mercury, lead, and zinc. Of greatest significance
economically, however, was gold, of which Kyrgyzstan was the Soviet
Union's third-largest supplier.
Data as of March 1996