Republic of Buryatia - the subject of the Russian Federation, is a member of the Siberian Federal District. The area of the republic is 351.3 thousand km2 (2% of the area of the Russian Federation). Buryatia is located in the center of the Eurasian continent, in the southern part of Eastern Siberia, south and east of Lake Baikal. On the west side of Lake Baikal is the Irkutsk region, on which borders Buryatia in the north-west and north, in the extreme south-west of the relatively short distance lies the border with the Republic of Tuva. In the south of the republic passes the state border of Russia with Mongolia. The republic borders on the Chita region in the east. The distance by rail from Ulan-Ude to Moscow - 5519 km, and to the Pacific Ocean - 3500 km.
In relation to the landscape the republic is in the contact area of the taiga and steppe zones, which determines the development of the natural environment, characterized by a high level of biological diversity, and heightened sensitivity to external influences. The unique Lake Baikal, included in the UNESCO object list of World Natural Heritage (1996), has more than 260 species, of which 250 are endemic. In the republic also inhabits many species, which belong to the rare and endangered species. 40 species of birds, 30 species of mammals, 20 species of insects and 120 plants are listed in the Red Book of Buryatia.
A unique combination in the middle of Asia of various landscapes from mountain tundra to steppes in conjunction with the world's largest and oldest freshwater lake - Lake Baikal, determines the special significance and value of the region in the structure of the planet's biosphere.
The Republic of Buryatia is part of the upland, occupying a significant part of the south of Eastern Siberia and is characterized by powerful mountain ranges and vast, deep and sometimes nearly closed intermountain basins. Throughout practically the entire territory prevail strongly dissected mountains, flat surfaces are found only in tectonic depressions and valleys of major rivers. The area of the mountains is 4 times as much as the area occupied by lowlands. The Republic of Buryatia is characterized by a significant elevation above sea level. The lowest point is the level of Lake Baikal - 456 meters according to the Pacific point, and the highest point is the glaciered peak Munch-Sardyk in the Vostochnyi Sayan Mountains 3491 meters above sea level.
Natural resources of Buryatia are unique both in its reserves, and in their diversity. Dense coniferous forests, high mountain ranges, the wide steppe, mountain valleys with a variety of colors of grass, plenty of nuts and berries are favorable conditions for numerous representatives of fauna of Buryatia. There are many unique and rare species listed in the Red Book.
Lake Baikal is a natural reservoir of a fifth of the world's reserves of fresh water of the highest quality. The lake is more than 20 million years; length of the lake is 636 km, width - 80 km, depth - 1637 meters; 2500 different species of animals and fish, 250 of which are endemic, inhabit the Baikal and the surrounding area.
The Republic is rich in mineral resources. In the territory of Buryatia for 50 years of vigorous activity by geologists were explored more than 700 deposits of various minerals, and more than 600 deposits recorded on the state balance sheet of Russia and territorial balance of the Republic of Buryatia. Among the identified deposits 247 of gold (228 alluvial, 16 hardrock and 3 complex). In the list of strategic minerals types are 7 deposits of tungsten, 13 – uranium, 4 – complex ores, by 2 - molybdenum and beryllium, by one - tin and aluminum. Republic of Buryatia has a large inferred uranium raw material base. The balance reserves of 8 deposits of fluorspar are able to provide the needs of metallurgical enterprises of Siberia and the Far East in the lump fluorite. Balance reserves of 10 deposits of brown coal and 4 deposits of hard coal will last for hundreds of years to provide the needs of fuel and energy complex of Buryatia. In the republic also identified two deposits of asbestos, number of jade and building materials, as well as apatite, phosphorite, graphite and zeolites. The mineral resources of Buryatia contain 48% of balance reserves of Russian zinc, 24% - of lead, 37% - of molybdenum, 27% - of tungsten, 16% - of fluorspar and 15% - chrysotile - asbestos. Most major and unique mineral deposits are located within a radius of 200 km from the nearest railway lines VSZHD and BAM.
Degree of geologic certainty of the mineral resources of the republic allows to predict the discovery here of new promising deposits of various minerals, including new genetic types.
Buryatia - a multinational area. Total in the republic in peace and harmony live people of more than 100 nationalities. The indigenous population of the republic - the Buryats, Russian, the Evenkis and the Soyots.
Our republic is distinguished from other regions of Russia a unique blend of cultures of different nationalities and different religions: Buddhism, Shamanism, Orthodox and Old Believers.
The population of the republic distinguish a tolerance that contributes to the preservation of stability in political, social and economic sphere.
As of January 1, 2014 in the Republic of Buryatia lived 974 thousand people. The population density is 2.8 persons per 1 sq. km. The most populated southern areas, 58.7% of the population live in six towns of the republic, within the mountain areas - more than 1/5 of the population. More than 40% of the population of the Republic of Buryatia live in rural areas.
In the Republic of Buryatia 293 municipalities, including 21 municipal district, 2 urban districts and 270 rural and urban settlements.
Capital - the city of Ulan-Ude.