Magadan Oblast

Magadan Oblast
Magadan Oblast
Магаданская область (Russian)
—  Oblast  —


Coat of arms
Coordinates: 62°54′N 153°42′E / 62.9°N 153.7°E / 62.9; 153.7Coordinates: 62°54′N 153°42′E / 62.9°N 153.7°E / 62.9; 153.7
Political status
Country Russia
Federal district Far Eastern[1]
Economic region Far Eastern[2]
Established December 3, 1953
Administrative center Magadan
Government (as of August 2010)
 - Governor[3] Nikolay Dudov[4]
 - Legislature Oblast Duma[5]
Area (as of the 2002 Census)[6]
 - Total 461,400 km2 (178,147.5 sq mi)
Area rank 11th
Population (2010 Census)[7]
 - Total 157,000
 - Rank 81st
 - Density 0.34 /km2 (0.88 /sq mi)
 - Urban 95.4%
 - Rural 4.6%
Population (2002 Census)[8]
 - Total 182,726
 - Rank 81st
 - Density 0.4 /km2 (1.0 /sq mi)
 - Urban 92.3%
 - Rural 7.7%
Time zone(s) MAGST (UTC+12:00)[9]
ISO 3166-2 RU-MAG
License plates 49
Official languages Russian[10]
Nagayevo Bay, Magadan

Magadan Oblast (Russian: Магада́нская о́бласть, Magadanskaya oblast) is a federal subject of Russia (an oblast) in the Far Eastern Federal District. Its administrative center is the city of Magadan.

The oblast is bordered in the north by Chukotka Autonomous Okrug, in the east by Kamchatka Krai, in the south by Khabarovsk Krai, and in the west by the Sakha Republic.



Magadan Oblast was established in 1953 in what had popularly been known as Kolyma. As a result of considerable raw resources, especially gold, silver, tin, and tungsten deposits, mining activities and road building had been developed during the Stalin era in the 1930s and 1940s under the coordination of Dalstroy and its forced labor camps. On Stalin's death, Dalstroy was disbanded and the regional administration took over many of its former responsibilities.

From then on, paid labor replaced most of the convict-based manpower, attracted by the region's rapid economic expansion, especially the gold-mining interests.

The indigenous peoples of the region, including the Evens, Koryaks, Yupiks, Chukchis, Orochs, Chuvans and Itelmens, who had traditionally lived from fishing along the Sea of Okhotsk coast or from reindeer herding in the River Kolyma valley, suffered from the industrialisation of the area but were able to rely on institutional support until 1987 when Perestroika started to cause many of the older structures to close. As a result, many of those who can no longer rely on traditional sources of income are now unemployed.[11]

Chukotka was formerly an autonomous okrug subsumed within Magadan Oblast, but it declared its separation in 1991.

Terrain and wildlife

Magadan Oblast consists principally of mountainous desert, tundra, and taiga. The southern part of the region is partly forested with birch, willow, mountain ash, larch and alder.

The animal species in the south include snow sheep, reindeer, moose and brown bears. There are also many varieties of birds, including ducks and seabirds. The Sea of Okhotsk has rich fishing grounds for pollock, herring, cod, flounder and salmon, as well as whales, seals, crabs and shellfish.


The economy is centered on mining interests for gold, silver and other non-ferrous metals. The city of Magadan is the only large industrial center. The other main contributor to the economy is fishing, particularly for export, with processing companies in Magadan, Ola, Yamsk, and Evensk. Recently, there has been interest in exploiting the coal resources in the region. Over the medium term, there seem to be excellent opportunities for petroleum and natural gas exploitation. Agriculture is not well developed in the region.

Magadan Oblast is considered one of the world's richest mining areas. Gold is the region's main resource, although silver and tin deposits are also being developed. There are nearly 2000 placer gold deposits, 100 gold ore deposits, and 48 silver ore deposits in the territory.[12]

The fishing industry is the region's only food sector and is second in importance after mining. The 600,000 km2 area of the Sea of Okhotsk that borders on Magadan Oblast is one of the most productive regions of the world ocean. Magadan Region has more than 15,900 km of coastline and 29,016 km of rivers of commercial importance. The catching vessels of the region's fishing companies operate mainly in Russia's economic zone, the Sea of Okhotsk and the Bering Sea, and to some extent in the Sea of Japan. Most of the catch comes from coastal waters. Fishing industry companies are concentrated in Magadan, Ola, Yamsk, and Evensk. The most important commercial fish are pollock, herring, cod, navaga (a member of the cod family), flounder, and various kinds of salmon. Crabs, squid, shrimp, and whelks are also caught.[13]

Unfortunately, despite these rich natural resources, the economy has not prospered as much as might have been expected in recent years. The severe climate and poorly developed infrastructure are partly to blame but the difficult transition from Soviet times has led to the collapse of a number of companies with the result that many inhabitants have left the region. Recently, there do seem to have been renewed efforts to encourage foreign investment which could lead to improvements in the economy. Indeed, on a visit to Magadan in November 2005, President Vladimir Putin supported the extension of special tax advantages for the region in order to encourage gold exploitation.[14]

Owing to the severe climate, agriculture is Magadan Region's least developed economic sector; as a result, 50% of all food products must be supplied from outside. The agricultural complex consists of companies producing agricultural products, the food and processing industries, a production infrastructure, and farm enterprises. The particular areas of specialization are reindeer herding, fur farming, and traditional hunting, fishing, and fur trapping activities. Companies involved in food processing and production include Gormolzavod, a distillery, a pasta factory, a sausage factory, the Dukcha state poultry farm, and the Khasynsky state farm.[15]

While official unemployment in Magadan Region is around 12% per cent, it is higher in remote areas where a large segment of the population is indigenous (16–18%). The actual unemployment figures must be much higher, because many people who live in remote areas have no opportunity to register as unemployed. In some places unemployment is probably almost 20%, although this is not officially recognized. While reindeer herding is ruined in many places, and fishing quotas are nearly impossible to get, the fraction of indigenous workers in industry and mining is almost invisible.

Administrative divisions


Population: 182,726 (2002 Census), 161,225 (2010 Jan.) Urban Population: 154,086 (2010 Jan.) Rural Population: 7,139 (2010 Jan.)

Ethnic groups: According to the 2002 Census the ‘national composition’ was:

Demographics for 2006 and later

Magadan is a federal subject that has the highest rate of depopulation in the Russian Federation. Its population, which stood at 384,525 in 1991, stands at 165,820 as of January 1, 2008 (according to the State Committee of the Russian Federation on Statistics), falling at a rate of around 2% per year. Rural population which stood at 59,151 is now standing at 8,833 and decreasing at a rate of around 10% per year. Entire villages are being emptied out and the population of the rural areas of the districts is simply disappearing. Rural population of Yagodninsky District has been reduced from 13,843 (1991) to 445 (2007). Omsukchansky District had its rural population plummet from 1,301 to 79. Especially extreme is the example of Susumansky District, where the rural population almost disappeared: from 9,764 in 1991 to just 116 in 2007. Emigration is evident from the fact that for the 20-24 age group, there are only 66 females living in Rural areas as against 202 Males. Male life expectancy for rural areas rose to 53.73 years in 2006 from 51.88 in 2005.[17]

Although Magadan Oblast is a part of the program of resettlement of ethnic Russian families,[18] not a single such family from the near abroad has so far settled in the Oblast.[citation needed]

District Population Urban Rural Births BR Deaths DR NGR
Magadan Oblast 171,569 161,937 9,632 1820 10.70 2242 13.20 -0.25%
Magadan 107,265 107,265 0 1171 10.90 1292 12.10 -0.12%
Olsky District 11,463 7,917 3,546 124 10.90 192 16.90 -0.60%
Omsukchansky District 5,993 5,887 106 51 8.60 61 10.30 -0.17%
Severo-Evensky District 3,129 1,797 1,332 29 9.50 55 18.10 -0.86%
Srednekansky District 4,193 2,984 1,209 35 8.70 74 18.40 -0.97%
Susumansky District 11,166 10,952 214 101 9.30 132 12.20 -0.29%
Tenkinsky District 6,523 4,433 2,090 74 11.60 96 15.00 -0.34%
Khasynsky District 9,147 8,587 560 108 12.00 140 15.50 -0.35%
Yagodninsky District 12,690 12,115 575 127 10.40 200 16.30 -0.59%

After 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, Vladimir Zhirinovsky, the leader of Russia’s LDPR party, has called on Japanese to leave “the dangerous islands” and move to the Magadan Oblast.[19][20][21]


  1. ^ Президент Российской Федерации. Указ №849 от 13 мая 2000 г. «О полномочном представителе Президента Российской Федерации в федеральном округе». Вступил в силу 13 мая 2000 г. Опубликован: "Собрание законодательства РФ", №20, ст. 2112, 15 мая 2000 г. (President of the Russian Federation. Decree #849 of May 13, 2000 On the Plenipotentiary Representative of the President of the Russian Federation in a Federal District. Effective as of May 13, 2000).
  2. ^ Госстандарт Российской Федерации. №ОК 024-95 27 декабря 1995 г. «Общероссийский классификатор экономических регионов. 2. Экономические районы», в ред. Изменения №5/2001 ОКЭР. (Gosstandart of the Russian Federation. #OK 024-95 December 27, 1995 Russian Classification of Economic Regions. 2. Economic Regions, as amended by the Amendment #5/2001 OKER. ).
  3. ^ Charter, Article 62
  4. ^ Official website of the Administration of Magadan Oblast. Nikolay Nikolayevich Dudov, Governor of Magadan Oblast (Russian)
  5. ^ Charter, Article 45
  6. ^ Федеральная служба государственной статистики (Federal State Statistics Service) (2004-05-21). "Территория, число районов, населённых пунктов и сельских администраций по субъектам Российской Федерации (Territory, Number of Districts, Inhabited Localities, and Rural Administration by Federal Subjects of the Russian Federation)" (in Russian). Всероссийская перепись населения 2002 года (All-Russia Population Census of 2002). Federal State Statistics Service. Retrieved 2011-11-01. 
  7. ^ Федеральная служба государственной статистики (Federal State Statistics Service) (2011). "Предварительные итоги Всероссийской переписи населения 2010 года (Preliminary results of the 2010 All-Russian Population Census)" (in Russian). Всероссийская перепись населения 2010 года (All-Russia Population Census of 2010). Federal State Statistics Service. Retrieved 2011-04-25. 
  8. ^ Федеральная служба государственной статистики (Federal State Statistics Service) (2004-05-21). "Численность населения России, субъектов Российской Федерации в составе федеральных округов, районов, городских поселений, сельских населённых пунктов – районных центров и сельских населённых пунктов с населением 3 тысячи и более человек (Population of Russia, its federal districts, federal subjects, districts, urban localities, rural localities—administrative centers, and rural localities with population of over 3,000)" (in Russian). Всероссийская перепись населения 2002 года (All-Russia Population Census of 2002). Federal State Statistics Service. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  9. ^ Правительство Российской Федерации. Постановление №725 от 31 августа 2011 г. «О составе территорий, образующих каждую часовую зону, и порядке исчисления времени в часовых зонах, а также о признании утратившими силу отдельных Постановлений Правительства Российской Федерации». Вступил в силу по истечении 7 дней после дня официального опубликования. Опубликован: "Российская Газета", №197, 6 сентября 2011 г. (Government of the Russian Federation. Resolution #725 of August 31, 2011 On the Composition of the Territories Included into Each Time Zone and on the Procedures of Timekeeping in the Time Zones, as Well as on Abrogation of Several Resolutions of the Government of the Russian Federation. Effective as of after 7 days following the day of the official publication).
  10. ^ Official the whole territory of Russia according to Article 68.1 of the Constitution of Russia.
  11. ^ Perestroika's Legacy and Indigenous Peoples in Magadan, Winfried K. Dallmann, Norwegian Polar Institute. Retrieved 26 February 2007.
  12. ^ Magadan Region- General Information
  13. ^ Magadan Region- General Information
  14. ^ Magadan Still a Zone after Putin Visits, Kommersant, 23 November 2005.
  15. ^ Magadan Region- General Information
  16. ^ (XLS) National Composition of Population for Regions of the Russian Federation. 2002 Russian All-Population Census. 2002. Retrieved 2006-07-20. 
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^ The Eurasia Review. Russia’s Zhirinovsky Calls On Japanese To Move To Russia
  20. ^ Interfax news. Zhirinovsky suggests resettling Japanese to Russia
  21. ^ Rambler News. Жириновский предложил переселить японцев в Россию(Russian)

External links


  • Магаданская областная Дума. №218-ОЗ 28 декабря 2001 г. «Устав Магаданской области», в ред. Закона №1188-ОЗ от 3 ноября 2009 г. «О принятии поправок к Уставу Магаданской области». Вступил в силу по истечении десяти дней со дня официального опубликования. Опубликован: "Магаданская правда", №201 (18919), 29 декабря 2001 г. (Magadan Oblast Duma. Law #218-OZ of December 28, 2001 Charter of Magadan Oblast, as amended by the Law #1188-OZ of November 3, 2009 On Adopting the Amendments to the Charter of Magadan Oblast. Effective as of the day ten days after the official publication date).

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