Sterlitamak (styĭrlyētəmäkˈ) [key], city (1989 pop. 247,000), Bashkortostan, E European Russia, on the Belaya River. It is a port and the center of a chemical complex. Milling and construction equipment and food products are also made. Founded in the second half of the 18th cent., Sterlitamak became a trading and transit point for the products of European Russia. It was the capital of Bashkiria (now Bashkortostan) from 1920 to 1922.