Ukhta Russia

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Description: If you drive a car in Moscow, chances are the gasoline in your tank came from this city located smack in the middle of the northern Komi republic.

Interesting fact No. 1: Ukhta is known for its many language schools. As a result, a lot of its residents speak English, particularly young people.

Interesting fact No. 2: Ukhta is the birthplace of the well-known keyboard artist Andrei Derzhavin, a member of the band Mashina Vremeni.

Interesting fact No. 3: Ukhta is nicknamed the “Northern Pearl” because of its northern lights during winter, which lasts most of the year.

UKHTA, Komi Republic — If you drive a car in Moscow, chances are the gasoline in your tank came from this city located smack in the middle of the northern Komi republic.

Oil springs were found near the Ukhta River during the days of Ivan the Terrible in the 17th century. But the first oil well — one of the first in Russia — was only drilled by industrialist Mikhail Sidorov in the 19th century.

The drilling started in earnest a few years after the 1917 revolution, leading to the founding of the village of Chibyu along the Ukhta River in 1929. In 1939, the village was renamed Ukhta, and it gained the status of a town in 1943.

While the local climate is known for being chilly, even during the short summer, the well-educated, often-English-speaking population is warm and friendly.

But this wasn't always the case. The Soviet government used prisoners as slave labor to develop the area starting in 1938, and many people died through brutality and torture. This tragic chapter in Ukhta's history is noted in Alexander Solzhenitsyn's book "The Gulag Archipelago."

These days, Ukhta is called the industrial capital of the Komi republic — and not without reason. It is where much of the regional production of oil, gas and bricks is concentrated. Most of Moscow's automobile gasoline and diesel fuel comes from Ukhta.

Sever Gazprom Company (39 /2 Ulitsa Lenina; +7 2167-762605; ) transports natural gas through pipelines to industrial and residential consumers throughout Europe.

LUKoil-Komi (31 Ulitsa Neftyanikov; +7 2167-55-111; ) is a subsidiary of the oil giant LUKoil and is engaged in the exploration, extraction and development of hydrocarbons in the Komi republic.

Northern Main Oil Pipelines (2/1 Ulitsa A.I. Zeryunova; +7 8216-76-01-71; ) is one of 14 subsidiaries of the state oil pipeline monopoly Transneft.

Perhaps it's no coincidence that one of the city's best-known former residents is billionaire Roman Abramovich, who made his fortune in the oil industry.

Both of Abramovich's parents died when he was young, and he grew up here with an uncle, Leib Abramovich, who worked in the local timber industry and lived in an apartment at 22 Oktyabrskaya Ulitsa. Abramovich studied at the Ukhta Industrial Institute (now Ukhta State Technical University) but left without graduating to enter compulsory military service in 1984.

After his time in the army, Abramovich moved to Moscow and enrolled in the Moscow State Automobile and Road Technical University — and again didn't stay through graduation. While in Moscow, he stayed with another uncle, Abram Abramovich.

The famously shy billionaire, ranked by Forbes magazine as the ninth-richest Russian, with a fortune of $12.1 billion in 2012, rarely talks about his days in Ukhta. But after he had amassed his wealth, the director of  School No. 2, Abramovich's alma mater, asked him to contribute money for repairs. In 2000, Abramovich donated 2 million rubles (worth roughly $70,000 at the time).

Photogallery Ukhta Russia:

File:ViewFromVetlosyan.jpg - Wikimedia Commons
RA-04124 - KomiAviaTrans Mil Mi-10K at Ukhta | Photo ID 279090 ...
Ukhta, Russia 2 by mckiltti on DeviantArt

Ukhta, Russia 3 by mckiltti on DeviantArt
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Ukhta pictures - Ukhta town, Komi Republic, Russia

Ukhta pictures - Ukhta town, Komi Republic, Russia
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Komi Republic, Russia facts, resources, nature pictures
Ukhta pictures - Ukhta town, Komi Republic, Russia
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Images of Ukhta,

Panoramio - Untitled photo
Panoramio - Untitled photo
Komi Republic, Russia facts, resources, nature pictures

Panoramio - Untitled photo
Ukhta pictures - Ukhta town, Komi Republic, Russia
Panoramio - Untitled photo