Russia's Samara Region lies in the middle reaches of the Volga, the largest river in Europe.

The region covers an area of 53,600 square kilometres (0.3% of Russia's total area). The population density is 59.3 people per square kilometre. The region stretches 335 kilometres from north to south, and 315 kilometres from west to east.

The region has a unique geo-economic position. The region lies at the crossroads of north-south (water, railroad, air) and west-east (railroad, automobile, air) transport routes, forming the Samara transport hub. The region is in fact the Volga Federal District's transit centre.

The Samara Region is home to 2.2% of the country's population (3.2 million) and accounts for 2.3% of Russia's GDP.

The region has 10 urban districts and 27 municipal districts. The city of Samara, which has a population of 1,135,000, is the region's administrative centre.

The region's main competitive advantages include its transportation and geographic position, a multi-sector economy with a large share of processing industries, high potential for science and innovation, developed telecommunications, financial, and social infrastructure, development institutions, high consumption potential, a relatively high level of economic activity, and a qualified workforce.

The region accounts for about 3% of Russia's oil production. The growth rates of hydrocarbon reserves exceed the production rate. The cement and the construction materials industries are well developed in the region. A powerful oil refining cluster also exists in the region.

The Samara Region's industrial potential is based on high-tech machine building. The major industries are automobile, aviation, space equipment production, and engine building. Plants producing electrical equipment, rubber, plastic and metal products, and research institutes are integrated with these industries.

The chemical industry is the region's main area of industrial specialisation. The region is first in Russia in car manufacturing, the production of synthetic ammonia, synthetic rubber, synthetic resin, linoleum and mineral fertilizers.

The region's industrial potential is based on major power generating companies: the Zhiguli Hydroelectric Station and the Volga Territorial Generation Company. And the region has a well-developed power distribution system.

In 2010-2011, there have been clear signs of an accelerated economic recovery in all sectors of the Samara Region's economy. In 2010, the index of industrial production reached 115.6% compared to 2009, and in January-March 2011 it was 118.2% compared to the same period of 2010. The biggest growth has been seen in the production of transport vehicles and related sectors. There has also been a consistent growth in metallurgy, the chemical and construction materials industries. In the second half of 2010, positive dynamics began developing in construction. By the end of 2010, the total construction volume increased by 5.7% over the level of 2009.

One of the key results of the Samara Region's social and economic growth in 2010 was that positive tendencies began developing in the investment sphere. The total volume of investment in fixed capital amounted to 132.6 billion roubles. In the first quarter of 2011, the index of investment reached 106.5% against the same period of the previous year.

There are a number of large investment projects being implemented in the Samara Region, which boosts investment activity. The major projects are the creation of a special economic zone of industrial and production type within the the region's Stavropolsky municipal district and the establishment of a high-tech industrial park, the Zhiguli Valley, in Togliatti. By the end of 2020, the total amount of investment will come to 300 billion roubles.

In 2010, two municipal business incubators (all in all there are five) opened in the region; the Centre of Innovation Development and Cluster Initiatives and a leasing company providing services to small and medium-sized enterprises were established.