🇰🇿 Shymkent, known until 1993 as Chimkent; Чимкент, is a city in Kazakhstan. It is near the border with Uzbekistan. It is one of three Kazakh cities which have the status equal to that of a region. It is the third-most populous city in Kazakhstan. It is a regional cultural centre. Shymkent is situated 690 km (430 mi) west of Almaty and 1,483 km (920 mi) south of Nur-Sultan. It is also 120 km (75 mi) to the north of 🇺🇿 Tashkent, Uzbekistan. The city is a major railroad junction in the Turkestan-Siberia Railway.
Economy Formerly dominated by lead mining, industrial growth began in the 1930s. A lead smelter was opened in Shymkent in the 1930s. It supplied a major part of the USSR's metals needs, copper as well as lead and others, including three-quarters of all bullets fired by the Red Army. Smelting continued until 2008, causing extreme levels of pollution (lead, cadmium, etc.) in the surrounding ground, and then controversially restarted in 2010, briefly, under a major UK-listed company, Kazakhmys.
The city also has industries producing refined zinc, processed karakul pelts, textiles, foodstuffs, and pharmaceuticals. Also, the city has a medium-sized refinery, which is owned and operated by PetroKazakhstan.
Shymkent is one of the leading industrial and economic centres of Kazakhstan. The city has industrial enterprises of non-ferrous metallurgy, mechanical engineering, chemical, oil refining and food industries.
The petrochemical and pharmaceutical industries include “PetroKazakhstan Oil Products” LLP (oil refining), “Khimpharm” JSC (medicines). Metallurgical goods are produced by “Yuzhpolymetal” JSC (lead and other products).
Mechanical engineering is represented by Cardanval JSC (cardan shafts and crosspieces for cars and tractors), Yuzhmash JSC (forging and pressing machines, spare parts and equipment), Elektroapparat LLP (power switches and other products).
As for light industry, enterprises include “Voskhod” (garments from woolen and semi-woolen fabrics: suits, coats, jackets, etc.), “Adal” (textile), “Elastic” (socks from high-quality yarn). Construction materials are produced by “Shymkentcement” and “Kurylys materialdary” JSC (bricks).
“Shymkentmai” JSC and “Kainar” LLP (processing of cotton, sunflower, safflower, soybean, production of refined edible oil and other products), “Shymkentpivo” JSC (beer), “Visit” JSC (soft drinks), “Shymkentsut” JSC (dairy products) are also operating in the city.
There are 2 industrial zones in the city. Investments of over 64 billion tenge have been attracted, over 72 projects have been launched, more than 4,000 people have been employed.
Shymkent is rated E+ by the Global Urban Competitiveness Report (GUCR) which evaluates and ranks world cities in the context of economic competitiveness. E+ cities are strong regional gateway cities. Shymkent has a population of over 1,005,996 people. Shymkent also forms the centre of the wider Shymkent metropolitan area which has a population of over 1,800,000 people.
Twin Towns – Sister Cities Shymkent is Twinned with: 🇧🇾 Mogilev, Belarus; 🏴 Stevenage, United Kingdom; 🇬🇷 Acharnes, Greece; 🇹🇷 İzmir, Turkey; 🇹🇭 Pattaya, Thailand; 🇮🇹 Grosseto, Italy; 🇨🇳 Baiyin, China; 🇹🇯 Khujand, Tajikistan; 🇹🇷 Eskishehir, Turkey.