Turkmenistan Population and Language
The population of Turkmenistan is concentrated to a strip of land in the west as well as to the river valleys and the area around the Karakum Canal. The majority of the residents are Turkmen, a people of mixed Turkish and Mongolian origin. Turkmen are also found in Iran, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Iraq and Syria.
The Turkmen have long since been divided into different clans, which has made it difficult to unite under a common leadership. Although clan culture was fought during the Soviet era (c. 1920–1991), it still plays an important role, and there are signs of conflicts between different clans, including within the army. Mutual loyalty and strong leaders characterize the clan empire. There are around 5,000 clans.
- COUNTRYAAH.COM: Key populations estimated size and data of Turkmenistan, including population density of how many people per square mile. Also included are facts for population and language.
In addition, there are uz cups, kazaks and other Central Asian peoples. A large part of the Russians who lived in Turkmenistan in Soviet times have emigrated. Birth rates have long been high and almost a third of the population is under 15. At the same time, child mortality is high.
Turkmeniska, which belongs to the South Turkish language group, has been the country’s official language since 1990. Just under a quarter of the population speak Russian fluently. Turkmenic as a written language was first created in the 1920s and then written in Arabic writing. In 1929 the Turkmen were changed to Latin alphabet and 1940 to Cyrillic. After Turkmenistan’s independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, the country officially decided to return to the Latin alphabet, but most Turkmen still use the Cyrillic script.
Turkmenian pronunciation guide
Most letters are pronounced about the same in Turkmen as in Swedish, but there are some letters that we do not have.
Ç = tj, with a clear t
Ž = whistling sound, like French j
Ň = ng
Ş = sch
Y = a weak vowel sound, closest to one in
ý = a soft j, as in English yawn, occurs only within words
FACTS – POPULATION AND LANGUAGE
large majority of Turkmen, minorities of Uzbek, Kazakhs, Russians and others
Number of residents
5 758 075 (2017)
Number of residents per square kilometer
Percentage of residents in the cities
51.2 percent (2017)
Nativity / birth
25.4 per 1000 residents (2016)
Mortality / mortality
7.1 per 1000 residents (2016)
1.7 percent (2017)
2.9 number of births per woman (2016)
Percentage of women
50.8 percent (2017)
68 years (2016)
Life expectancy for women
71 years (2016)
Life expectancy for men
64 years (2016)
Turkmen is the official language
Government bonds should save the Treasury
The government decides to start selling government bonds to get more money into the Treasury, which has been hit hard by falling oil and gas prices.
Purge of financially responsible
President Berdimuhamedow dismisses several ministers and high officials responsible for the country’s economy, including a Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economic Development. The president says on TV that corruption has increased in government agencies and companies in the financial sector. Since the beginning of the year, according to the president, legal proceedings have been initiated against some 80 senior civil servants.
The president issues mass murders
Over 1,200 prisoners are released in an amnesty issued by the president. It is not clear what the released have been convicted of. Amnesty is announced after President Berdimuhamedow visited his Austrian colleague Heinz Fischer in Vienna. Human rights groups have appealed to Fischer to address during the meeting the issue of the limited human rights in Turkmenistan. The EU and Turkmenistan share a common interest in increasing sales of Turkmen gas to Europe.
New honorary title for the president
President Berdimuhamedow is honored with the title of People’s Horse Breeders in connection with the celebration of Horse Day.
Efforts against water wastage
The president says the government should work to reduce waste of water. According to the scientific journal Nature, the desert country of Turkmenistan is the world’s largest water consumer per resident. Households do not have to pay for the water.
Low oil prices cause economic crisis
President Berdimuhamedow admits in a televised speech that the country’s energy-based economy is in crisis due to falling oil prices. He urges the government to work to broaden the economy. Turkmenistan only earns about one billion US dollars on exports of goods other than oil and gas. The president calls for that figure to be raised to five billion by 2020.
Demonstrations are allowed, with major restrictions
11th of March
President Berdimuhamedow signs a new law that, from July 1, 2015, allows public demonstrations, though with a wide range of restrictions.