This figure is an estimate of the figures for 1 January 2014, and is provided by stat.uz, the country’s official statistical body. Their data is based on sampling 10% of the population, rather than undertaking a traditional census - the last full census to cover Uzbekistan was the 1989 Soviet Census. Other estimates of Uzbekistan’s population are available, notably from the CIA World Factbook. It estimated that Uzbekistan’s population in July 2011 was 28,394,180 - 700,000 lower than the official Government estimate.
The latest data available data on ethnicity in Uzbekistan is from 1996. It showed the following major ethnic groups in Uzbekistan: Uzbek (80%), Russian (5.5%), Tajik (3%), Karakalpak (2.5%), Tartar (1.5%), Other 2.5%). There is some dispute about these figures, however, and it is possible that the number of Tajiks in Uzbekistan is considerably higher.
Although not a large enough group to make the above list, there are also around 20,000 ethnic Koreans in Uzbekistan, descendants of the Koreans deported to Central Asia by Stalin.
Uzbekistan Religion, Economy and Politics
The main religion in Uzbekistan is Islam. Official figures are not available, but according to the US State Department, 88% of Uzbeks are Muslims and 9% are Orthodox Christians.
Again, official figures are not available, but the US State Department (see link above) reports that the Uzbek language is the first language of 74.3% of Uzbeks, followed by Russian (14.2%) and Tajik (4.4%).
Uzbek is the official state language, but Russian remains widely spoken and is a second language for many in the country. Tajik language speakers are concentrated in ethnically Tajik areas, particularly in Samarkand and Bukhara.
Uzbekistan Population History
At the beginning of the 19th century, there were roughly 2000 miles of unmapped territory between Tsarist Russia, and British India. Russia jumped on this opportunity for expanded domination and by the turn of the 20th century, Uzbekistan was under Russian control. Uzbekistan soldiers fought on both sides during World War II (the majority fought against Nazi Germany), and roughly 300,000 were either killed or went missing.
Uzbekistan declared its independence from Russia in 1990 and it has been a sovereign nation ever since.