The Poltava land is situated in the Middle Dnieper riverside and is one of those historical regions having become the core of the Ukrainian statehood. Its historic and cultural properties, natural riches and powerful national economic complex play an important role in the state building of independent Ukraine.
The history of this province dates back to the period of centuries depth and the information of archaeological investigations testify to it. At the beginning of the Common Era the present Poltava land was a part of ancient Slavonic tribes settling. In Kyiv Rus times many fortresses have been built on the region’s territory. At the beginning of XVIII century the Poltava land found itself in the center of military events. As a result of the Poltava battle the hope on independence of Ukraine has been lost for a long time. However the Poltava land became the center of motion of the Ukrainian sergeant-majors on defence of their rights. More than 300 settlements have been marked on the Boplan map of the middle of XVIII century within the boundaries of the present Poltava land.
In 1802 the administrative province was established. Its territory was too large. The Poltava province had the lands that later had been passed to many present neighbouring regions.
The region was the center of Chumaks (salt traders) and the various crafts prospered there intensively. The first sugar house has been built in 1828. Due to railway construction (in 1869 Kryukiv was connected with Odessa as well as in 1870 Kremenchuk with Kharkiv) the new industrial enterprises were appeared and the trade has been extended. On the edge of XIX-XX centuries there were already 841 enterprises in the Poltava land.
Exactly on the Poltava land the zemstvos began to be actively formed, and the political motion has been activated at the beginning of XX century. The global processes of industrialization, and also collectivization were taken place, as well as elsewhere, in the conditions of terror and repressions.
For 1923-1937 a few administrative reforms were conducted in the Soviet Union. As a result of one of them on September, 22, 1937 Poltava Region was created in present scopes practically.
The present territory of the region makes 28.8 thousand sq. km. The population is 1610, 9 thousand people.
During 50-70th years of the last century many changes has been taken place in the administrative-territorial division, as a result the Poltava land began to divide into 25 rural districts and 5 cities of regional and 10 cities of district value, 21 settlements, 467 settlement councils and 1848 villages.
The Poltava land is rich in mineral resources. The oil, gas condensate and natural gas are the main fuel and energy resources of the region, the extraction of which began in Poltava Region in 1951. The Glynsko-Rozbyshiv (Lokhvytsia and Gadyach districts) is the large oil and gas deposit of the region, providing almost one and a half of extraction volumes of oil and gas in the region. The Poltava oil is of high-quality: its composition include up to 55 per cents of light oil and quite little sulphur. The associated gas features almost 70 per cents of propane-butane highly flammable fractions, which makes it a valuable raw material for chemical industry (production of chemical fibres and plastics).
By economic structure Poltava Region is the industrial-agrarian region of Ukraine belonging to the regions with the average level of industrial production development. The majority of branches of the regional industry started to develop in 50-60th years: oil- and gas extraction, iron ore production, ferrous metallurgy, oil refining, automobile, machine tool and instrument making, electrical engineering and the like.
It should be noted also that Poltava Region has a powerful mining industry, which is represented by the Joint-Stock Company "Poltava Mining and Concentrating Integrated Works". The iron ore concentrate is the basic product of this enterprise with the content of iron up to 65 per cents and fluxed iron pellets for the blast-furnace workshops of iron and steel works.
The largest enterprises of the chemical industries are follows as JSC "Kremenchuk Black Carbon Plant", Kremenchuk Collective Enterprise "Spectrum" and Poltava JSC "Khimplastmas".
The food industry of the region is represented by meat packing, dairy processing, sugar refining, baking and confectionary, fruit and vegetable canning, distilling and alcoholic beverage, brewing, oil and fat industry and production of soft beverages.
The machine-building and metal-working take the third place in the regional industrial complex by production volumes.
Among the regional important productions in the national division of labour, there are automobile and electrical engineering industry, machine tool and instrument making, railway car building, production of diamond instruments, road building machines and technological equipment for chemical, food and light industries.
On the territory of Poltava Region all types of transport (except for marine) function, including railway, motor-car, river, pipeline and air. Making cargo and passenger traffic, the separate types of transport co-operate between itself, forming the transport system of the region.
The leading position in cargo traffic in Poltava Region belongs to the pipeline and railway transport, in carrying of passengers the leaders are motor, electric and railway transport. The operating length of railways on the territory of the region is 853.4 km. The region is crossed by four railways as the Bakhmach-Romodan-Kremenchuk with the Lokhvytsia-Gadyach sideline, the Bakhmach-Pyryatyn-Grebinka, the Lozova-Poltava-Romodan-Grebinka and the Kharkiv-Poltava -Kremenchuk.
The heaviest loaded is the motorway Lozova-Poltava-Romodan-Grebinka-Kyiv, by which the transit flow of coal, machines and industrial equipment, chemical goods is forwarding from Donbass. The second biggest traffic load is carried out through the motorway Kremenchuk-Poltava-Kharkiv that provides the transit flow of ferrous metals, machines and industrial equipment from the Dnieper riverside to other regions of Ukraine and abroad.
The navigable rivers of the region Dnieper, Sula and Vorskla create the necessary conditions for development of river transport. The transport waterways pass on the Dnieper and the Sula from a mouth to the Tarasivka Pier and on the Vorskla from a mouth to Kobelyak. The river transport of the region carries mainly national economic cargo. The main share of cargo is transported on the Dnieper River.
The important motorway of the national significance Kyiv-Kharkiv with the Poltava-Krasnograd sideline and the motorway Poltava-Kremenchuk-Oleksandriya are running through the regional territory.
The Poltava Airport is one of the oldest in Ukraine (built in 1924), however the present landing strip of the airport enables to receive and dispatch the aircrafts of different types.
Poltava Region has been and remains the important center of agriculture development. Already in 70th years of the last century the environment-friendly production technologies were actively implemented in the region. Today 640 agricultural enterprises increase production of goods. In 2002 almost 3 million tons of grain has been harvested. There are good prospects for beet growing and the stock-raising is being renewed.
The Regional Special Purpose Programme of Development of Electric, Mail and Mobile Communications, designed on the basis of the Complex Programme of Creation of the United National Communications Network of Ukraine, is under operation in Poltava Region. In 1999 first in Ukraine the digital telephone exchange 5 ESS for 10 thousand subscribers was put into operation in Poltava.
The region is entered the top regions of Ukraine by many indexes. In particular it is concerned the internal and external investments, volumes of foreign trade in commodities and services and the like. The powerful skilled, scientific, educational, financial and technical and raw material base creates the wonderful prospects for development. Poltava Region has wonderful prospects in the sphere of tourism and resort business.
Poltava Region was fated to become the spiritual center of Ukraine. In particular, it played the important role in development of the Ukrainian culture and literature. On this blessed land the first Cossack chroniclers Grygoriy Grabyanka and Samiylo Velychko inspirationally worked. From here the prominent Ukrainian philosopher, world-known poet and enlightener Grygoriy Skovorada began to wonder. The outstanding Ukrainian writer Ivan Kotlyarevskiy, who became the beginner of the Ukrainian literature, writing the immortal "Aeneid", lived and worked there. The great part of members of the Society of Cyril and Methodius was born there. The world view of Mykola Gogol', Panas Myrny, Yevgen Grebinka, Oles Gonchar, Pavlo Zagrebelny and many other famous writers has been formed there.
The legendary Marusya Churay created her songs in Poltava. The family that gave outstanding composer Petro Tchaikovsky originated there; the prominent Ukrainian composers Yuriy and Platon Mayboroda, Oleksandr Bilash and singer Ivan Kozlovskiy were born there. The song traditions of the Poltava land are continued by prominent our contemporary Rayisa Kyrychenko.
The mathematician Mykhaylo Ostrogradskiy, surgeon Mykola Sklifosovskiy, scientist-ground expert Vasyl Dokuchayev, genius of cosmonautics Yuriy Kondratyuk and many other prominent scientists with the world name went to the glory from the Poltava land. The inhabitants of Poltava Region are proud that the life and creation of such global mental giants as Volodymyr Vernadskiy and Volodymyr Korolenko and world-known teachers Vasyl Sukhomlynskiy and Anton Makarenko is connected with the Poltava land.