Castile–La Mancha (kăstēlˈ–lä mänˈchə) [key], autonomous region (1990 pop. 1,695,144), central Spain, encompassing the provinces of Toledo, Ciudad Real, Cuenca, Guadalajara, and Albacete. It was established as an autonomous region in 1982. It is in the historical region of New Castile. Its plains are drained by the Tagus and the Guadiana rivers, and it is bordered by the Iberian range, the Baetic range, and the Morena range. Agriculture fuels the region's economy; dry farming is important, as is animal husbandry. Chief among agricultural products are wheat, grapes, sunflowers, saffron, and cotton. Industry is little developed outside of Ciudad Real, where a petroleum refinery was built. Manufacturing occurs on a small scale and consists chiefly of the processing of primary materials. The region lacks adequate energy resources, although a nuclear reactor was established at Zorita de los Canes. The provincial capitals are the sites of most of the region's commercial activity. Migration to Madrid is common among young men looking for work. The National Museum of Abstract Art (1966) is found in Castile–La Mancha.
See more Encyclopedia articles on: Spanish and Portuguese Political Geography