The 2005 CIA World Factbook by United States. Central Intelligence Agency

THE CIA WORLD FACTBOOK 2005

CONTENTS

Countries and Locations

Field Listings

Rank Orders

Appendixes

Notes and Definitions

History of The World Factbook

Contributors and Copyright Information

Purchasing Information

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What's New

- Country information has been updated as of 20 October, 2005.

- There have been some significant changes to the latest edition of The World Factbook. Recent confirmation that the United Kingdom Government administers the Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia on Cyprus as dependencies (and not as lease areas like the US Guantanamo Bay Naval Station in Cuba) has required a changing of their status and their addition to the Factbook as new entities. In addition, the European Union has been included as an "Other" entity at the end of the listing. The European Union continues to accrue more nation-like characteristics for itself and so a separate listing was deemed appropriate. A fuller explanation may be found under the European Union Preliminary statement.

- Along with the new entities and the regular information updates, The World Factbook now also features six new fields. In the People category, a Major infectious diseases field has been added for countries deemed to pose a higher degree of risk for travelers. In the Economy category, entries have been added for Current account balance, Investment (gross fixed), Public debt, and Reserves of foreign exchange and gold. The Transnational issues category has a new Refugees and internally displaced persons entry.

- Revision of some individual country maps, first introduced in the 2001 edition, is continued in this edition. Several regional maps have also been updated to reflect boundary changes and place name spelling changes.

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Country Listing

[Transcriber's note: To search on a country name in this file, prefix the name with "@", e.g. "@Afghanistan". "Afghanistan" will find all occurrences; prefixing it with "@" will find the correct location.]

World

A

Afghanistan Akrotiri Albania Algeria American Samoa Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Arctic Ocean Argentina Armenia Aruba Ashmore and Cartier Islands Atlantic Ocean Australia Austria Azerbaijan

B

Bahamas, The Bahrain Baker Island Bangladesh Barbados Bassas da India Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory British Virgin Islands Brunei Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burma Burundi

C

Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Clipperton Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Cook Islands Coral Sea Islands Costa Rica Cote d'Ivoire Croatia Cuba Cyprus Czech Republic

D

Denmark Dhekelia Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic

E

East Timor Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Europa Island

F

Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern and Antarctic Lands

G

Gabon Gambia, The Gaza Strip Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Glorioso Islands Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guam Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana

H

Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City) Honduras Hong Kong Howland Island Hungary

I

Iceland India Indian Ocean Indonesia Iran Iraq Ireland Israel Italy

J

Jamaica Jan Mayen Japan Jarvis Island Jersey Johnston Atoll Jordan Juan de Nova Island

K

Kazakhstan Kenya Kingman Reef Kiribati Korea, North Korea, South Kuwait Kyrgyzstan

L

Laos Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg

M

Macau Macedonia Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Man, Isle of Marshall Islands Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Micronesia, Federated States of Midway Islands Moldova Monaco Mongolia Montserrat Morocco Mozambique

N

Namibia Nauru Navassa Island Nepal Netherlands Netherlands Antilles New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Northern Mariana Islands Norway

O

Oman

P

Pacific Ocean Pakistan Palau Palmyra Atoll Panama Papua New Guinea Paracel Islands Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Islands Poland Portugal Puerto Rico

Q

Qatar

R

Reunion Romania Russia Rwanda

S

Saint Helena Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia and Montenegro Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands Southern Ocean Spain Spratly Islands Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syria

T

Taiwan entry follows Zimbabwe Tajikistan Tanzania Thailand Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tromelin Island Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu

U

Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan

V

Vanuatu Venezuela Vietnam Virgin Islands

W

Wake Island Wallis and Futuna West Bank Western Sahara

Y

Yemen

Z

Zambia Zimbabwe

Taiwan European Union

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Field Listings

[Transcriber's note: To search on a field code in this file, prefix the code number with "@", e.g. "@2001". "2001" will find all occurrences; prefixing it with "@" will find the correct location.]

Code Field Description

2001 GDP (purchasing power parity) 2002 Population growth rate (%) 2003 GDP - real growth rate (%) 2004 GDP - per capita 2006 Dependency status 2007 Diplomatic representation from the US 2008 Transportation - note 2010 Age structure (%) 2011 Geographic coordinates 2012 GDP - composition by sector (%) 2013 Radio broadcast stations 2015 Television broadcast stations 2018 Sex ratio (male(s)/female) 2019 Heliports 2020 Elevation extremes (m) 2021 Natural hazards 2022 People - note 2023 Area - comparative 2024 Military service age and obligation (years of age) 2025 Manpower fit for military service 2026 Manpower reaching military service age annually 2028 Background 2030 Airports - with paved runways 2031 Airports - with unpaved runways 2032 Environment - current issues 2033 Environment - international agreements 2034 Military expenditures - percent of GDP (%) 2038 Electricity - production (kWh) 2042 Electricity - consumption (kWh) 2043 Electricity - imports (kWh) 2044 Electricity - exports (kWh) 2046 Population below poverty line (%) 2047 Household income or consumption by percentage share (%) 2048 Labor force - by occupation (%) 2049 Exports - commodities 2050 Exports - partners (%) 2051 Administrative divisions 2052 Agriculture - products 2053 Airports 2054 Birth rate (births/1,000 population) 2055 Military branches 2056 Budget 2057 Capital 2058 Imports - commodities 2059 Climate 2060 Coastline (km) 2061 Imports - partners (%) 2062 Economic aid - donor 2063 Constitution 2064 Economic aid - recipient 2065 Currency (code) 2066 Death rate (deaths/1,000 population) 2067 Military expenditures - dollar figure 2068 Dependent areas 2070 Disputes - international 2075 Ethnic groups (%) 2076 Exchange rates 2077 Executive branch 2078 Exports 2079 Debt - external 2080 Fiscal year 2081 Flag description 2085 Highways (km) 2086 Illicit drugs 2087 Imports 2088 Independence 2089 Industrial production growth rate (%) 2090 Industries 2091 Infant mortality rate (deaths/1,000 live births) 2092 Inflation rate (consumer prices) (%) 2093 Waterways (km) 2094 Judicial branch 2095 Labor force 2096 Land boundaries (km) 2097 Land use (%) 2098 Languages (%) 2100 Legal system 2101 Legislative branch 2102 Life expectancy at birth (years) 2103 Literacy (%) 2105 Manpower available for military service 2106 Maritime claims 2107 International organization participation 2108 Merchant marine 2109 National holiday 2110 Nationality 2111 Natural resources 2112 Net migration rate (migrant(s)/1,000 population) 2113 Geography - note 2115 Political pressure groups and leaders 2116 Economy - overview 2117 Pipelines (km) 2118 Political parties and leaders 2119 Population 2120 Ports and harbors 2121 Railways (km) 2122 Religions (%) 2123 Suffrage 2124 Telephone system 2125 Terrain 2127 Total fertility rate (children born/woman) 2128 Government type 2129 Unemployment rate (%) 2137 Military - note 2138 Communications - note 2140 Government - note 2142 Country name 2144 Location 2145 Map references 2146 Irrigated land (sq km) 2147 Area (sq km) 2149 Diplomatic representation in the US 2150 Telephones - main lines in use 2151 Telephones - mobile cellular 2153 Internet users 2154 Internet country code 2155 HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate (%) 2156 HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS 2157 HIV/AIDS - deaths 2158 Currency code 2172 Distribution of family income - Gini index 2173 Oil - production (bbl/day) 2174 Oil - consumption (bbl/day) 2175 Oil - imports (bbl/day) 2176 Oil - exports (bbl/day) 2177 Median age (years) 2178 Oil - proved reserves (bbl) 2179 Natural gas - proved reserves (cu m) 2180 Natural gas - production (cu m) 2181 Natural gas - consumption (cu m) 2182 Natural gas - imports (cu m) 2183 Natural gas - exports (cu m) 2184 Internet hosts 2185 Investment (gross fixed) (% of GDP) 2186 Public debt (% of GDP) 2187 Current account balance 2188 Reserves of foreign exchange and gold 2193 Major infectious diseases 2194 Refugees and internally displaced persons

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Rank Orders

[Transcriber's note: To search on a rank order in this file, prefix the rank's name with "@", e.g. "@Population". "Population" will find all occurrences; prefixing it with "@" will find the correct location.]

Guide to Rank Order Pages

Rank Order pages are presorted lists of data from selected Factbook data fields. Rank Order pages are generally given in descending order - highest to lowest - such as Population and Area. The two exceptions are Unemployment Rate and Inflation Rate, which are in ascending - lowest to highest - order. Rank Order pages are available for the following 47 fields in six of the nine Factbook categories.

Geography

Area - total

People

Population Birth rate Death rate Infant mortality rate Life expectancy at birth - total Total fertility rate HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS HIV/AIDS - deaths

Economy

GDP (purchasing power parity) GDP - real growth rate GDP - per capita Investment (gross fixed) Inflation rate (consumer prices) Labor force Unemployment rate Public debt Industrial production growth rate Electricity - production Electricity - consumption Oil - production Oil - consumption Oil - exports Oil - imports Oil - proved reserves Natural Gas - production Natural Gas - consumption Natural Gas - exports Natural Gas - imports Natural Gas - proved reserves Current account balance Exports Imports Reserves of foreign exchange and gold Debt - external

Communications

Telephones - main lines in use Telephones - mobile cellular Internet hosts Internet users

Transportation

Railways - total Highways - total Waterways Merchant marine - total Airports

Military

Military expenditures - dollar figure Military expenditures - percent of GDP

Factbook fields with Rank Order pages are easily identified with a small bar chart icon to the right of the data field title.

Not all Rank Order pages include the same number of entries because information for a particular field is not available for all countries. In addition, not all data fields are suitable for displaying as Rank Order pages, such as those containing textual information. Textual information is more readily viewed by clicking on the Field Listing icon next to the Data field title. The other icon next to the data field title provides the definition of the field.

All of the 'Rank Order' pages can be downloaded as tab-delimited data files and can be opened in other applications such as spreadsheets and databases. To save a Rank Order page in a spreadsheet, first click on the 'Download Datafile' choice above the Rank Order page you selected; then, at the top of your browser window, click on 'File' and 'Save As'. After saving the file, open the spreadsheet, find the saved file, and 'Open' it.

Additional Rank Order pages being considered for future updates of the Factbook Web site include:

Median age Literacy Population below the poverty line

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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Appendixes

Appendix A - Abbreviations

Appendix B - International Organizations and Groups

Appendix C - Selected International Environmental Agreements

Appendix D - Cross-Reference List of Country Data Codes

Appendix E - Cross-Reference List of Hydrographic Data Codes

Appendix F - Cross-Reference List of Geographic Names

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Notes and Definitions

Along with the new entities and the regular information updates, The World Factbook now also features six new fields. In the Economy category, entries have been added for Current account balance, Investment (gross fixed), Public debt, and Reserves of foreign exchange and gold. The Transnational issues category has a new Refugees and internally displaced persons entry.

Abbreviations This information is included in Appendix A: Abbreviations, which includes all abbreviations and acronyms used in the Factbook, with their expansions.

Acronyms An acronym is an abbreviation coined from the initial letter of each successive word in a term or phrase. In general, an acronym made up solely from the first letter of the major words in the expanded form is rendered in all capital letters (NATO from North Atlantic Treaty Organization; an exception would be ASEAN for Association of Southeast Asian Nations). In general, an acronym made up of more than the first letter of the major words in the expanded form is rendered with only an initial capital letter (Comsat from Communications Satellite Corporation; an exception would be NAM from Nonaligned Movement). Hybrid forms are sometimes used to distinguish between initially identical terms (WTO: WTrO for World Trade Organization and WToO for World Tourism Organization.)

Administrative divisions This entry generally gives the numbers, designatory terms, and first- order administrative divisions as approved by the US Board on Geographic Names (BGN). Changes that have been reported but not yet acted on by BGN are noted.

Age structure This entry provides the distribution of the population according to age. Information is included by sex and age group (0-14 years, 15-64 years, 65 years and over). The age structure of a population affects a nation's key socioeconomic issues. Countries with young populations (high percentage under age 15) need to invest more in schools, while countries with older populations (high percentage ages 65 and over) need to invest more in the health sector. The age structure can also be used to help predict potential political issues. For example, the rapid growth of a young adult population unable to find employment can lead to unrest.

Agriculture - products This entry is an ordered listing of major crops and products starting with the most important.

Airports This entry gives the total number of airports. The runway(s) may be paved (concrete or asphalt surfaces) or unpaved (grass, dirt, sand, or gravel surfaces), but must be usable. Not all airports have facilities for refueling, maintenance, or air traffic control.

Airports - with paved runways This entry gives the total number of airports with paved runways (concrete or asphalt surfaces) by length. For airports with more than one runway, only the longest runway is included according to the following five groups - (1) over 3,047 m, (2) 2,438 to 3,047 m, (3) 1,524 to 2,437 m, (4) 914 to 1,523 m, and (5) under 914 m. Only airports with usable runways are included in this listing. Not all airports have facilities for refueling, maintenance, or air traffic control.

Airports - with unpaved runways This entry gives the total number of airports with unpaved runways (grass, dirt, sand, or gravel surfaces) by length. For airports with more than one runway, only the longest runway is included according to the following five groups - (1) over 3,047 m, (2) 2,438 to 3,047 m, (3) 1,524 to 2,437 m, (4) 914 to 1,523 m, and (5) under 914 m. Only airports with usable runways are included in this listing. Not all airports have facilities for refueling, maintenance, or air traffic control.

Appendixes This section includes Factbook-related material by topic.

Area This entry includes three subfields. Total area is the sum of all land and water areas delimited by international boundaries and/or coastlines. Land area is the aggregate of all surfaces delimited by international boundaries and/or coastlines, excluding inland water bodies (lakes, reservoirs, rivers). Water area is the sum of all water surfaces delimited by international boundaries and/or coastlines, including inland water bodies (lakes, reservoirs, rivers).

Area - comparative This entry provides an area comparison based on total area equivalents. Most entities are compared with the entire US or one of the 50 states based on area measurements (1990 revised) provided by the US Bureau of the Census. The smaller entities are compared with Washington, DC (178 sq km, 69 sq mi) or The Mall in Washington, DC (0.59 sq km, 0.23 sq mi, 146 acres).

Background This entry usually highlights major historic events and current issues and may include a statement about one or two key future trends.

Birth rate This entry gives the average annual number of births during a year per 1,000 persons in the population at midyear; also known as crude birth rate. The birth rate is usually the dominant factor in determining the rate of population growth. It depends on both the level of fertility and the age structure of the population.

Budget This entry includes revenues, total expenditures, and capital expenditures. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

Capital This entry gives the location of the seat of government.

Climate This entry includes a brief description of typical weather regimes throughout the year.

Coastline This entry gives the total length of the boundary between the land area (including islands) and the sea.

Communications This category deals with the means of exchanging information and includes the telephone, radio, television, and Internet host entries.

Communications - note This entry includes miscellaneous communications information of significance not included elsewhere.

Constitution This entry includes the dates of adoption, revisions, and major amendments.

Country data codes see Data codes

Country map Most versions of the Factbook provide a country map in color. The maps were produced from the best information available at the time of preparation. Names and/or boundaries may have changed subsequently.

Country name This entry includes all forms of the country's name approved by the US Board on Geographic Names (Italy is used as an example): conventional long form (Italian Republic), conventional short form (Italy), local long form (Repubblica Italiana), local short form (Italia), former (Kingdom of Italy), as well as the abbreviation. Also see the Terminology note.

Crude oil See entry for oil.

Currency (code) This entry identifies the national medium of exchange and, in parenthesis, gives the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 4217 alphabetic currency code for each country.

Current account balance This entry records a country's net trade in goods and services, plus net earnings from rents, interest, profits, and dividends, and net transfer payments (such as pension funds and worker remittances) to and from the rest of the world during the period specified. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

Data codes This information is presented in Appendix D: Cross-Reference List of Country Data Codes and Appendix E: Cross-Reference List of Hydrographic Data Codes.

Date of information In general, information available as of 1 January 2005, was used in the preparation of this edition.

Death rate This entry gives the average annual number of deaths during a year per 1,000 population at midyear; also known as crude death rate. The death rate, while only a rough indicator of the mortality situation in a country, accurately indicates the current mortality impact on population growth. This indicator is significantly affected by age distribution, and most countries will eventually show a rise in the overall death rate, in spite of continued decline in mortality at all ages, as declining fertility results in an aging population.

Debt - external This entry gives the total public and private debt owed to nonresidents repayable in foreign currency, goods, or services. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

Dependency status This entry describes the formal relationship between a particular nonindependent entity and an independent state.

Dependent areas This entry contains an alphabetical listing of all nonindependent entities associated in some way with a particular independent state.

Diplomatic representation The US Government has diplomatic relations with 187 independent states, including 186 of the 191 UN members (excluded UN members are Bhutan, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, and the US itself). In addition, the US has diplomatic relations with 1 independent state that is not in the UN - Holy See.

Diplomatic representation from the US This entry includes the chief of mission, embassy address, mailing address, telephone number, FAX number, branch office locations, consulate general locations, and consulate locations.

Diplomatic representation in the US This entry includes the chief of mission, chancery, telephone, FAX, consulate general locations, and consulate locations.

Disputes - international This entry includes a wide variety of situations that range from traditional bilateral boundary disputes to unilateral claims of one sort or another. Information regarding disputes over international terrestrial and maritime boundaries has been reviewed by the US Department of State. References to other situations involving borders or frontiers may also be included, such as resource disputes, geopolitical questions, or irredentist issues; however, inclusion does not necessarily constitute official acceptance or recognition by the US Government.

Distribution of family income - Gini index This index measures the degree of inequality in the distribution of family income in a country. The index is calculated from the Lorenz curve, in which cumulative family income is plotted against the number of families arranged from the poorest to the richest. The index is the ratio of (a) the area between a country's Lorenz curve and the 45 degree helping line to (b) the entire triangular area under the 45 degree line. The more nearly equal a country's income distribution, the closer its Lorenz curve to the 45 degree line and the lower its Gini index, e.g., a Scandinavian country with an index of 25. The more unequal a country's income distribution, the farther its Lorenz curve from the 45 degree line and the higher its Gini index, e.g., a Sub- Saharan country with an index of 50. If income were distributed with perfect equality, the Lorenz curve would coincide with the 45 degree line and the index would be zero; if income were distributed with perfect inequality, the Lorenz curve would coincide with the horizontal axis and the right vertical axis and the index would be 100.

Economic aid - donor This entry refers to net official development assistance (ODA) from Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) nations to developing countries and multilateral organizations. ODA is defined as financial assistance that is concessional in character, has the main objective to promote economic development and welfare of the less developed countries (LDCs), and contains a grant element of at least 25%. The entry does not cover other official flows (OOF) or private flows. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

Economic aid - recipient This entry, which is subject to major problems of definition and statistical coverage, refers to the net inflow of Official Development Finance (ODF) to recipient countries. The figure includes assistance from the World Bank, the IMF, and other international organizations and from individual nation donors. Formal commitments of aid are included in the data. Omitted from the data are grants by private organizations. Aid comes in various forms including outright grants and loans. The entry thus is the difference between new inflows and repayments. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

Economy This category includes the entries dealing with the size, development, and management of productive resources, i.e., land, labor, and capital.

Economy - overview This entry briefly describes the type of economy, including the degree of market orientation, the level of economic development, the most important natural resources, and the unique areas of specialization. It also characterizes major economic events and policy changes in the most recent 12 months and may include a statement about one or two key future macroeconomic trends.

Electricity - consumption This entry consists of total electricity generated annually plus imports and minus exports, expressed in kilowatt-hours. The discrepancy between the amount of electricity generated and/or imported and the amount consumed and/or exported is accounted for as loss in transmission and distribution.

Electricity - exports This entry is the total exported electricity in kilowatt-hours.

Electricity - imports This entry is the total imported electricity in kilowatt-hours.

Electricity - production This entry is the annual electricity generated expressed in kilowatt- hours. The discrepancy between the amount of electricity generated and/or imported and the amount consumed and/or exported is accounted for as loss in transmission and distribution.

Elevation extremes This entry includes both the highest point and the lowest point.

Entities Some of the independent states, dependencies, areas of special sovereignty, and governments included in this publication are not independent, and others are not officially recognized by the US Government. "Independent state" refers to a people politically organized into a sovereign state with a definite territory. "Dependencies" and "areas of special sovereignty" refer to a broad category of political entities that are associated in some way with an independent state. "Country" names used in the table of contents or for page headings are usually the short-form names as approved by the US Board on Geographic Names and may include independent states, dependencies, and areas of special sovereignty, or other geographic entities. There are a total of 271 separate geographic entities in The World Factbook that may be categorized as follows: INDEPENDENT STATES 192 Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, The Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burma, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo, Costa Rica, Cote d'Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, East Timor, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Fiji, Finland, France, Gabon, The Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Holy See, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kiribati, North Korea, South Korea, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Federated States of Micronesia, Moldova, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, NZ, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia and Montenegro, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uganda, Ukraine, UAE, UK, US, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe OTHER 2 Taiwan, European Union DEPENDENCIES AND AREAS OF SPECIAL SOVEREIGNTY 6 Australia - Ashmore and Cartier Islands, Christmas Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands, Coral Sea Islands, Heard Island and McDonald Islands, Norfolk Island 2 China - Hong Kong, Macau 2 Denmark - Faroe Islands, Greenland 16 France - Bassas da India, Clipperton Island, Europa Island, French Guiana, French Polynesia, French Southern and Antarctic Lands, Glorioso Islands, Guadeloupe, Juan de Nova Island, Martinique, Mayotte, New Caledonia, Reunion, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Tromelin Island, Wallis and Futuna 2 Netherlands - Aruba, Netherlands Antilles 3 New Zealand - Cook Islands, Niue, Tokelau 3 Norway - Bouvet Island, Jan Mayen, Svalbard 17 UK - Akrotiri, Anguilla, Bermuda, British Indian Ocean Territory, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dhekelia, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Guernsey, Jersey, Isle of Man, Montserrat, Pitcairn Islands, Saint Helena, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, Turks and Caicos Islands 14 US - American Samoa, Baker Island, Guam, Howland Island, Jarvis Island, Johnston Atoll, Kingman Reef, Midway Islands, Navassa Island, Northern Mariana Islands, Palmyra Atoll, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Wake Island MISCELLANEOUS 6 Antarctica, Gaza Strip, Paracel Islands, Spratly Islands, West Bank, Western Sahara OTHER ENTITIES 5 oceans - Arctic Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, Indian Ocean, Pacific Ocean, Southern Ocean 1 World

271 total

Environment - current issues This entry lists the most pressing and important environmental problems. The following terms and abbreviations are used throughout the entry: acidification - the lowering of soil and water pH due to acid precipitation and deposition usually through precipitation; this process disrupts ecosystem nutrient flows and may kill freshwater fish and plants dependent on more neutral or alkaline conditions (see acid rain). acid rain - characterized as containing harmful levels of sulfur dioxide or nitrogen oxide; acid rain is damaging and potentially deadly to the earth's fragile ecosystems; acidity is measured using the pH scale where 7 is neutral, values greater than 7 are considered alkaline, and values below 5.6 are considered acid precipitation; note - a pH of 2.4 (the acidity of vinegar) has been measured in rainfall in New England. aerosol - a collection of airborne particles dispersed in a gas, smoke, or fog. afforestation - converting a bare or agricultural space by planting trees and plants; reforestation involves replanting trees on areas that have been cut or destroyed by fire. asbestos - a naturally occurring soft fibrous mineral commonly used in fireproofing materials and considered to be highly carcinogenic in particulate form. biodiversity - also biological diversity; the relative number of species, diverse in form and function, at the genetic, organism, community, and ecosystem level; loss of biodiversity reduces an ecosystem's ability to recover from natural or man-induced disruption. bio-indicators - a plant or animal species whose presence, abundance, and health reveal the general condition of its habitat. biomass - the total weight or volume of living matter in a given area or volume. carbon cycle - the term used to describe the exchange of carbon (in various forms, e.g., as carbon dioxide) between the atmosphere, ocean, terrestrial biosphere, and geological deposits. catchments - assemblages used to capture and retain rainwater and runoff; an important water management technique in areas with limited freshwater resources, such as Gibraltar. DDT (dichloro-diphenyl-trichloro-ethane) - a colorless, odorless insecticide that has toxic effects on most animals; the use of DDT was banned in the US in 1972. defoliants - chemicals which cause plants to lose their leaves artificially; often used in agricultural practices for weed control, and may have detrimental impacts on human and ecosystem health. deforestation - the destruction of vast areas of forest (e.g., unsustainable forestry practices, agricultural and range land clearing, and the over exploitation of wood products for use as fuel) without planting new growth. desertification - the spread of desert-like conditions in arid or semi- arid areas, due to overgrazing, loss of agriculturally productive soils, or climate change. dredging - the practice of deepening an existing waterway; also, a technique used for collecting bottom-dwelling marine organisms (e.g., shellfish) or harvesting coral, often causing significant destruction of reef and ocean-floor ecosystems. drift-net fishing - done with a net, miles in extent, that is generally anchored to a boat and left to float with the tide; often results in an over harvesting and waste of large populations of non-commercial marine species (by-catch) by its effect of "sweeping the ocean clean". ecosystems - ecological units comprised of complex communities of organisms and their specific environments. effluents - waste materials, such as smoke, sewage, or industrial waste which are released into the environment, subsequently polluting it. endangered species - a species that is threatened with extinction either by direct hunting or habitat destruction. freshwater - water with very low soluble mineral content; sources include lakes, streams, rivers, glaciers, and underground aquifers. greenhouse gas - a gas that "traps" infrared radiation in the lower atmosphere causing surface warming; water vapor, carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, methane, hydrofluorocarbons, and ozone are the primary greenhouse gases in the Earth's atmosphere. groundwater - water sources found below the surface of the earth often in naturally occurring reservoirs in permeable rock strata; the source for wells and natural springs. Highlands Water Project - a series of dams constructed jointly by Lesotho and South Africa to redirect Lesotho's abundant water supply into a rapidly growing area in South Africa; while it is the largest infrastructure project in southern Africa, it is also the most costly and controversial; objections to the project include claims that it forces people from their homes, submerges farmlands, and squanders economic resources. Inuit Circumpolar Conference (ICC) - represents the 145,000 Inuits of Russia, Alaska, Canada, and Greenland in international environmental issues; a General Assembly convenes every three years to determine the focus of the ICC; the most current concerns are long-range transport of pollutants, sustainable development, and climate change. metallurgical plants - industries which specialize in the science, technology, and processing of metals; these plants produce highly concentrated and toxic wastes which can contribute to pollution of ground water and air when not properly disposed. noxious substances - injurious, very harmful to living beings. overgrazing - the grazing of animals on plant material faster than it can naturally regrow leading to the permanent loss of plant cover, a common effect of too many animals grazing limited range land. ozone shield - a layer of the atmosphere composed of ozone gas (O3) that resides approximately 25 miles above the Earth's surface and absorbs solar ultraviolet radiation that can be harmful to living organisms. poaching - the illegal killing of animals or fish, a great concern with respect to endangered or threatened species. pollution - the contamination of a healthy environment by man-made waste. potable water - water that is drinkable, safe to be consumed. salination - the process through which fresh (drinkable) water becomes salt (undrinkable) water; hence, desalination is the reverse process; also involves the accumulation of salts in topsoil caused by evaporation of excessive irrigation water, a process that can eventually render soil incapable of supporting crops. siltation - occurs when water channels and reservoirs become clotted with silt and mud, a side effect of deforestation and soil erosion. slash-and-burn agriculture - a rotating cultivation technique in which trees are cut down and burned in order to clear land for temporary agriculture; the land is used until its productivity declines at which point a new plot is selected and the process repeats; this practice is sustainable while population levels are low and time is permitted for regrowth of natural vegetation; conversely, where these conditions do not exist, the practice can have disastrous consequences for the environment . soil degradation - damage to the land's productive capacity because of poor agricultural practices such as the excessive use of pesticides or fertilizers, soil compaction from heavy equipment, or erosion of topsoil, eventually resulting in reduced ability to produce agricultural products. soil erosion - the removal of soil by the action of water or wind, compounded by poor agricultural practices, deforestation, overgrazing, and desertification. ultraviolet (UV) radiation - a portion of the electromagnetic energy emitted by the sun and naturally filtered in the upper atmosphere by the ozone layer; UV radiation can be harmful to living organisms and has been linked to increasing rates of skin cancer in humans. water-born diseases - those in which bacteria survive in, and are transmitted through, water; always a serious threat in areas with an untreated water supply.

Environment - international agreements This entry separates country participation in international environmental agreements into two levels - party to and signed, but not ratified. Agreements are listed in alphabetical order by the abbreviated form of the full name.

Environmental agreements This information is presented in Appendix C: Selected International Environmental Agreements, which includes the name, abbreviation, date opened for signature, date entered into force, objective, and parties by category.

Ethnic groups This entry provides an ordered listing of ethnic groups starting with the largest and normally includes the percent of total population.

Exchange rates This entry provides the official value of a country's monetary unit at a given date or over a given period of time, as expressed in units of local currency per US dollar and as determined by international market forces or official fiat.

Executive branch This entry includes several subfields. Chief of state includes the name and title of the titular leader of the country who represents the state at official and ceremonial functions but may not be involved with the day-to-day activities of the government. Head of government includes the name and title of the top administrative leader who is designated to manage the day-to-day activities of the government. For example, in the UK, the monarch is the chief of state, and the prime minister is the head of government. In the US, the president is both the chief of state and the head of government. Cabinet includes the official name for this body of high-ranking advisers and the method for selection of members. Elections includes the nature of election process or accession to power, date of the last election, and date of the next election. Election results includes the percent of vote for each candidate in the last election.

Exports This entry provides the total US dollar amount of merchandise exports on an f.o.b. (free on board) basis. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

Exports - commodities This entry provides a rank ordering of exported products starting with the most important; it sometimes includes the percent of total dollar value.

Exports - partners This entry provides a rank ordering of trading partners starting with the most important; it sometimes includes the percent of total dollar value.

Fiscal year This entry identifies the beginning and ending months for a country's accounting period of 12 months, which often is the calendar year but which may begin in any month. All yearly references are for the calendar year (CY) unless indicated as a noncalendar fiscal year (FY).

Flag description This entry provides a written flag description produced from actual flags or the best information available at the time the entry was written. The flags of independent states are used by their dependencies unless there is an officially recognized local flag. Some disputed and other areas do not have flags.

Flag graphic Most versions of the Factbook include a color flag at the beginning of the country profile. The flag graphics were produced from actual flags or the best information available at the time of preparation. The flags of independent states are used by their dependencies unless there is an officially recognized local flag. Some disputed and other areas do not have flags.

GDP (purchasing power parity) This entry gives the gross domestic product (GDP) or value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year. GDP dollar estimates in the Factbook are derived from purchasing power parity (PPP) calculations. See the note on GDP methodology for more information.

GDP - composition by sector This entry gives the percentage contribution of agriculture, industry, and services to total GDP. The distribution will total less than 100 percent if the data are incomplete.

GDP - per capita This entry shows GDP on a purchasing power parity basis divided by population as of 1 July for the same year.

GDP - real growth rate This entry gives GDP growth on an annual basis adjusted for inflation and expressed as a percent.

GDP methodology In the Economy category, GDP dollar estimates for all countries are derived from purchasing power parity (PPP) calculations rather than from conversions at official currency exchange rates. The PPP method involves the use of standardized international dollar price weights, which are applied to the quantities of final goods and services produced in a given economy. The data derived from the PPP method provide the best available starting point for comparisons of economic strength and well-being between countries. The division of a GDP estimate in domestic currency by the corresponding PPP estimate in dollars gives the PPP conversion rate. Whereas PPP estimates for OECD countries are quite reliable, PPP estimates for developing countries are often rough approximations. Most of the GDP estimates are based on extrapolation of PPP numbers published by the UN International Comparison Program (UNICP) and by Professors Robert Summers and Alan Heston of the University of Pennsylvania and their colleagues. In contrast, the currency exchange rate method involves a variety of international and domestic financial forces that often have little relation to domestic output. In developing countries with weak currencies the exchange rate estimate of GDP in dollars is typically one-fourth to one-half the PPP estimate. Furthermore, exchange rates may suddenly go up or down by 10% or more because of market forces or official fiat whereas real output has remained unchanged. On 12 January 1994, for example, the 14 countries of the African Financial Community (whose currencies are tied to the French franc) devalued their currencies by 50%. This move, of course, did not cut the real output of these countries by half. One important caution: the proportion of, say, defense expenditures as a percentage of GDP in local currency accounts may differ substantially from the proportion when GDP accounts are expressed in PPP terms, as, for example, when an observer tries to estimate the dollar level of Russian or Japanese military expenditures. Note: the numbers for GDP and other economic data cannot be chained together from successive volumes of the Factbook because of changes in the US dollar measuring rod, revisions of data by statistical agencies, use of new or different sources of information, and changes in national statistical methods and practices.

GNP Gross national product (GNP) is the value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year, plus income earned by its citizens abroad, minus income earned by foreigners from domestic production. The Factbook, following current practice, uses GDP rather than GNP to measure national production. However, the user must realize that in certain countries net remittances from citizens working abroad may be important to national well-being.

GWP This entry gives the gross world product (GWP) or aggregate value of all final goods and services produced worldwide in a given year.

Geographic coordinates This entry includes rounded latitude and longitude figures for the purpose of finding the approximate geographic center of an entity and is based on the Gazetteer of Conventional Names, Third Edition, August 1988, US Board on Geographic Names and on other sources.

Geographic names This information is presented in Appendix F: Cross-Reference List of Geographic Names. It includes a listing of various alternate names, former names, local names, and regional names referenced to one or more related Factbook entries. Spellings are normally, but not always, those approved by the US Board on Geographic Names (BGN). Alternate names and additional information are included in parentheses.

Geography This category includes the entries dealing with the natural environment and the effects of human activity.

Geography - note This entry includes miscellaneous geographic information of significance not included elsewhere.

Gini index See entry for Distribution of family income - Gini index

Government This category includes the entries dealing with the system for the adoption and administration of public policy.

Government - note This entry includes miscellaneous government information of significance not included elsewhere.

Government type This entry gives the basic form of government. Definitions of the major governmental terms are as follows: Anarchy - a condition of lawlessness or political disorder brought about by the absence of governmental authority. Commonwealth - a nation, state, or other political entity founded on law and united by a compact of the people for the common good. Communism - a system of government in which the state plans and controls the economy and a single - often authoritarian - party holds power; state controls are imposed with the elimination of private ownership of property or capital while claiming to make progress toward a higher social order in which all goods are equally shared by the people (i.e., a classless society). Confederacy (Confederation) - a union by compact or treaty between states, provinces, or territories, that creates a central government with limited powers; the constituent entities retain supreme authority over all matters except those delegated to the central government. Constitutional - a government by or operating under an authoritative document (constitution) that sets forth the system of fundamental laws and principles that determines the nature, functions, and limits of that government. Constitutional democracy - a form of government in which the sovereign power of the people is spelled out in a governing constitution. Constitutional monarchy - a system of government in which a monarch is guided by a constitution whereby his/her rights, duties, and responsibilities are spelled out in written law or by custom. Democracy - a form of government in which the supreme power is retained by the people, but which is usually exercised indirectly through a system of representation and delegated authority periodically renewed. Democratic republic - a state in which the supreme power rests in the body of citizens entitled to vote for officers and representatives responsible to them. Dictatorship - a form of government in which a ruler or small clique wield absolute power (not restricted by a constitution or laws). Ecclesiastical - a government administrated by a church. Federal (Federative) - a form of government in which sovereign power is formally divided - usually by means of a constitution - between a central authority and a number of constituent regions (states, colonies, or provinces) so that each region retains some management of its internal affairs; differs from a confederacy in that the central government exerts influence directly upon both individuals as well as upon the regional units. Federal republic - a state in which the powers of the central government are restricted and in which the component parts (states, colonies, or provinces) retain a degree of self-government; ultimate sovereign power rests with the voters who chose their governmental representatives. Maoism - the theory and practice of Marxism-Leninism developed in China by Mao Zedong (Mao Tse-tung), which states that a continuous revolution is necessary if the leaders of a communist state are to keep in touch with the people. Marxism - the political, economic, and social principles espoused by 19th century economist Karl Marx; he viewed the struggle of workers as a progression of historical forces that would proceed from a class struggle of the proletariat (workers) exploited by capitalists (business owners), to a socialist "dictatorship of the proletariat," to, finally, a classless society - communism. Marxism-Leninism - an expanded form of communism developed by Lenin from doctrines of Karl Marx; Lenin saw imperialism as the final stage of capitalism and shifted the focus of workers' struggle from developed to underdeveloped countries. Monarchy - a government in which the supreme power is lodged in the hands of a monarch who reigns over a state or territory, usually for life and by hereditary right; the monarch may be either a sole absolute ruler or a sovereign - such as a king, queen, or prince - with constitutionally limited authority. Oligarchy - a government in which control is exercised by a small group of individuals whose authority generally is based on wealth or power. Parliamentary democracy - a political system in which the legislature (parliament) selects the government - a prime minister, premier, or chancellor along with the cabinet ministers - according to party strength as expressed in elections; by this system, the government acquires a dual responsibility: to the people as well as to the parliament. Parliamentary government (Cabinet-Parliamentary government) - a government in which members of an executive branch (the cabinet and its leader - a prime minister, premier, or chancellor) are nominated to their positions by a legislature or parliament, and are directly responsible to it; this type of government can be dissolved at will by the parliament (legislature) by means of a no confidence vote or the leader of the cabinet may dissolve the parliament if it can no longer function. Parliamentary monarchy - a state headed by a monarch who is not actively involved in policy formation or implementation (i.e., the exercise of sovereign powers by a monarch in a ceremonial capacity); true governmental leadership is carried out by a cabinet and its head - a prime minister, premier, or chancellor - who are drawn from a legislature (parliament). Republic - a representative democracy in which the people's elected deputies (representatives), not the people themselves, vote on legislation. Socialism - a government in which the means of planning, producing, and distributing goods is controlled by a central government that theoretically seeks a more just and equitable distribution of property and labor; in actuality, most socialist governments have ended up being no more than dictatorships over workers by a ruling elite. Sultanate - similar to a monarchy, but a government in which the supreme power is in the hands of a sultan (the head of a Muslim state); the sultan may be an absolute ruler or a sovereign with constitutionally limited authority. Theocracy - a form of government in which a Deity is recognized as the supreme civil ruler, but the Deity's laws are interpreted by ecclesiastical authorities (bishops, mullahs, etc.); a government subject to religious authority. Totalitarian - a government that seeks to subordinate the individual to the state by controlling not only all political and economic matters, but also the attitudes, values, and beliefs of its population.

Gross domestic product see GDP

Gross national product see GNP

Gross world product see GWP

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate This entry gives an estimate of the percentage of adults (aged 15-49) living with HIV/AIDS. The adult prevalence rate is calculated by dividing the estimated number of adults living with HIV/AIDS at yearend by the total adult population at yearend.

HIV/AIDS - deaths This entry gives an estimate of the number of adults and children who died of AIDS during a given calendar year.

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS This entry gives an estimate of all people (adults and children) alive at yearend with HIV infection, whether or not they have developed symptoms of AIDS.

Heliports This entry gives the total number of heliports with hard-surface runways, helipads, or landing areas that support routine sustained helicopter operations exclusively and have support facilities including one or more of the following facilities: lighting, fuel, passenger handling, or maintenance. It includes former airports used exclusively for helicopter operations but excludes heliports limited to day operations and natural clearings that could support helicopter landings and takeoffs.

Highways This entry states the total length of the highway system and the length of the paved and unpaved parts.

Household income or consumption by percentage share Data on household income or consumption come from household surveys, the results adjusted for household size. Nations use different standards and procedures in collecting and adjusting the data. Surveys based on income will normally show a more unequal distribution than surveys based on consumption. The quality of surveys is improving with time, yet caution is still necessary in making inter-country comparisons.

Hydrographic data codes see Data codes

Illicit drugs This entry gives information on the five categories of illicit drugs - narcotics, stimulants, depressants (sedatives), hallucinogens, and cannabis. These categories include many drugs legally produced and prescribed by doctors as well as those illegally produced and sold outside of medical channels. Cannabis (Cannabis sativa) is the common hemp plant, which provides hallucinogens with some sedative properties, and includes marijuana (pot, Acapulco gold, grass, reefer), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC, Marinol), hashish (hash), and hashish oil (hash oil). Coca (mostly Erythroxylum coca) is a bush with leaves that contain the stimulant used to make cocaine. Coca is not to be confused with cocoa, which comes from cacao seeds and is used in making chocolate, cocoa, and cocoa butter. Cocaine is a stimulant derived from the leaves of the coca bush. Depressants (sedatives) are drugs that reduce tension and anxiety and include chloral hydrate, barbiturates (Amytal, Nembutal, Seconal, phenobarbital), benzodiazepines (Librium, Valium), methaqualone (Quaalude), glutethimide (Doriden), and others (Equanil, Placidyl, Valmid). Drugs are any chemical substances that effect a physical, mental, emotional, or behavioral change in an individual. Drug abuse is the use of any licit or illicit chemical substance that results in physical, mental, emotional, or behavioral impairment in an individual. Hallucinogens are drugs that affect sensation, thinking, self- awareness, and emotion. Hallucinogens include LSD (acid, microdot), mescaline and peyote (mexc, buttons, cactus), amphetamine variants (PMA, STP, DOB), phencyclidine (PCP, angel dust, hog), phencyclidine analogues (PCE, PCPy, TCP), and others (psilocybin, psilocyn). Hashish is the resinous exudate of the cannabis or hemp plant (Cannabis sativa). Heroin is a semisynthetic derivative of morphine. Mandrax is a trade name for methaqualone, a pharmaceutical depressant. Marijuana is the dried leaf of the cannabis or hemp plant (Cannabis sativa). Methaqualone is a pharmaceutical depressant, referred to as mandrax in Southwest Asia and Africa. Narcotics are drugs that relieve pain, often induce sleep, and refer to opium, opium derivatives, and synthetic substitutes. Natural narcotics include opium (paregoric, parepectolin), morphine (MS-Contin, Roxanol), codeine (Tylenol with codeine, Empirin with codeine, Robitussan AC), and thebaine. Semisynthetic narcotics include heroin (horse, smack), and hydromorphone (Dilaudid). Synthetic narcotics include meperidine or Pethidine (Demerol, Mepergan), methadone (Dolophine, Methadose), and others (Darvon, Lomotil). Opium is the brown, gummy exudate of the incised, unripe seedpod of the opium poppy. Opium poppy (Papaver somniferum) is the source for the natural and semisynthetic narcotics. Poppy straw is the entire cut and dried opium poppy-plant material, other than the seeds. Opium is extracted from poppy straw in commercial operations that produce the drug for medical use. Qat (kat, khat) is a stimulant from the buds or leaves of Catha edulis that is chewed or drunk as tea. Quaaludes is the North American slang term for methaqualone, a pharmaceutical depressant. Stimulants are drugs that relieve mild depression, increase energy and activity, and include cocaine (coke, snow, crack), amphetamines (Desoxyn, Dexedrine), ephedrine, ecstasy (clarity, essence, doctor, Adam), phenmetrazine (Preludin), methylphenidate (Ritalin), and others (Cylert, Sanorex, Tenuate).

Imports This entry provides the total US dollar amount of merchandise imports on a c.i.f. (cost, insurance, and freight) or f.o.b. (free on board) basis. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

Imports - commodities This entry provides a rank ordering of imported products starting with the most important; it sometimes includes the percent of total dollar value.

Imports - partners This entry provides a rank ordering of trading partners starting with the most important; it sometimes includes the percent of total dollar value.

Independence For most countries, this entry gives the date that sovereignty was achieved and from which nation, empire, or trusteeship. For the other countries, the date given may not represent "independence" in the strict sense, but rather some significant nationhood event such as the traditional founding date or the date of unification, federation, confederation, establishment, fundamental change in the form of government, or state succession. Dependent areas include the notation "none" followed by the nature of their dependency status. Also see the Terminology note.

Industrial production growth rate This entry gives the annual percentage increase in industrial production (includes manufacturing, mining, and construction).

Industries This entry provides a rank ordering of industries starting with the largest by value of annual output.

Infant mortality rate This entry gives the number of deaths of infants under one year old in a given year per 1,000 live births in the same year; included is the total death rate, and deaths by sex, male and female. This rate is often used as an indicator of the level of health in a country.

Inflation rate (consumer prices) This entry furnishes the annual percent change in consumer prices compared with the previous year's consumer prices.

International disputes see Disputes - international

International organization participation This entry lists in alphabetical order by abbreviation those international organizations in which the subject country is a member or participates in some other way.

International organizations This information is presented in Appendix B: International Organizations and Groups which includes the name, abbreviation, date established, aim, and members by category.

Internet country code This entry includes the two-letter codes maintained by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) in the ISO 3166 Alpha-2 list and used by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) to establish country-coded top-level domains (ccTLDs).

Internet hosts This entry lists the number of Internet hosts available within a country. An Internet host is a computer connected directly to the Internet; normally an Internet Service Provider's (ISP) computer is a host. Internet users may use either a hard-wired terminal, at an institution with a mainframe computer connected directly to the Internet, or may connect remotely by way of a modem via telephone line, cable, or satellite to the Internet Service Provider's host computer. The number of hosts is one indicator of the extent of Internet connectivity.

Internet users This entry gives the number of users within a country that access the Internet. Statistics vary from country to country and may include users who access the Internet at least several times a week to those who access it only once within a period of several months.

Introduction This category includes one entry, Background.

Investment (gross fixed) This entry records total business spending on fixed assets, such as factories, machinery, equipment, dwellings, and inventories of raw materials, which provide the basis for future production. It is measured gross of the depreciation of the assets, i.e., it includes invesment that merely replaces worn-out or scrapped capital.

Irrigated land This entry gives the number of square kilometers of land area that is artificially supplied with water.

Judicial branch This entry contains the name(s) of the highest court(s) and a brief description of the selection process for members.

Labor force This entry contains the total labor force figure.

Labor force - by occupation This entry lists the percentage distribution of the labor force by occupation. The distribution will total less than 100 percent if the data are incomplete.

Land boundaries This entry contains the total length of all land boundaries and the individual lengths for each of the contiguous border countries.

Land use This entry contains the percentage shares of total land area for three different types of land use: arable land - land cultivated for crops like wheat, maize, and rice that are replanted after each harvest; permanent crops - land cultivated for crops like citrus, coffee, and rubber that are not replanted after each harvest; includes land under flowering shrubs, fruit trees, nut trees, and vines, but excludes land under trees grown for wood or timber; other - any land not arable or under permanent crops; includes permanent meadows and pastures, forests and woodlands, built-on areas, roads, barren land, etc.

Languages This entry provides a rank ordering of languages starting with the largest and sometimes includes the percent of total population speaking that language.

Legal system This entry contains a brief description of the legal system's historical roots, role in government, and acceptance of International Court of Justice (ICJ) jurisdiction.

Legislative branch This entry contains information on the structure (unicameral, bicameral, tricameral), formal name, number of seats, and term of office. Elections includes the nature of election process or accession to power, date of the last election, and date of the next election. Election results includes the percent of vote and/or number of seats held by each party in the last election.

Life expectancy at birth This entry contains the average number of years to be lived by a group of people born in the same year, if mortality at each age remains constant in the future. The entry includes total population as well as the male and female components. Life expectancy at birth is also a measure of overall quality of life in a country and summarizes the mortality at all ages. It can also be thought of as indicating the potential return on investment in human capital and is necessary for the calculation of various actuarial measures.

Literacy This entry includes a definition of literacy and Census Bureau percentages for the total population, males, and females. There are no universal definitions and standards of literacy. Unless otherwise specified, all rates are based on the most common definition - the ability to read and write at a specified age. Detailing the standards that individual countries use to assess the ability to read and write is beyond the scope of the Factbook. Information on literacy, while not a perfect measure of educational results, is probably the most easily available and valid for international comparisons. Low levels of literacy, and education in general, can impede the economic development of a country in the current rapidly changing, technology-driven world.

Location This entry identifies the country's regional location, neighboring countries, and adjacent bodies of water.

Major infectious diseases This entry lists major infectious diseases likely to be encountered in countries where the risk of such diseases is assessed to be very high as compared to the United States. These infectious diseases represent risks to US government personnel traveling to the specified country for a period of less than three years. The degree of risk is assessed by considering the foreign nature of these infectious diseases, their severity, and the probability of being affected by the diseases present. The diseases listed do not necessarily represent the total disease burden experienced by the local population. The risk to an individual traveler varies considerably by the specific location, visit duration, type of activities, type of accommodations, time of year, and other factors. Consultation with a travel medicine physician is needed to evaluate individual risk and recommend appropriate preventive measures such as vaccines. Diseases are organized into the following six exposure categories shown in italics and listed in typical descending order of risk. Note - The sequence of exposure categories listed in individual country entries may vary according to local conditions. food or waterborne diseases acquired through eating or drinking on the local economy: Hepatitis A - viral disease that interferes with the functioning of the liver; spread through consumption of food or water contaminated with fecal matter, principally in areas of poor sanitation; victims exhibit fever, jaundice, and diarrhea; 15% of victims will experience prolonged symptoms over 6-9 months; vaccine available. Hepatitis E - water-borne viral disease that interferes with the functioning of the liver; most commonly spread through fecal contamination of drinking water; victims exhibit jaundice, fatigue, abdominal pain, and dark colored urine. Typhoid fever - bacterial disease spread through contact with food or water contaminated by fecal matter or sewage; victims exhibit sustained high fevers; left untreated, mortality rates can reach 20%. vectorborne diseases acquired through the bite of an infected arthropod: Malaria - caused by single-cell parasitic protozoa Plasmodium; transmitted to humans via the bite of the female Anopheles mosquito; parasites multiply in the liver attacking red blood cells resulting in cycles of fever, chills, and sweats accompanied by anemia; death due to damage to vital organs and interruption of blood supply to the brain; endemic in 100, mostly tropical, countries with 90% of cases and the majority of 1.5-2.5 million estimated annual deaths occurring in sub- Saharan Africa. Dengue fever - mosquito-borne (Aedes aegypti) viral disease associated with urban environments; manifests as sudden onset of fever and severe headache; occasionally produces shock and hemorrhage leading to death in 5% of cases. Yellow fever - mosquito-borne viral disease; severity ranges from influenza-like symptoms to severe hepatitis and hemorrhagic fever; occurs only in tropical South America and sub-Saharan Africa, where most cases are reported; fatality rate is less than 20%. Japanese Encephalitis - mosquito-borne (Culex tritaeniorhynchus) viral disease associated with rural areas in Asia; acute encephalitis can progress to paralysis, coma, and death; fatality rates 30%. African Trypanosomiasis - caused by the parasitic protozoa Trypanosoma; transmitted to humans via the bite of bloodsucking Tsetse flies; infection leads to malaise and irregular fevers and, in advanced cases when the parasites invade the central nervous system, coma and death; endemic in 36 countries of sub-Saharan Africa; cattle and wild animals act as reservoir hosts for the parasites. Cutaneous Leishmaniasis - caused by the parasitic protozoa leishmania; transmitted to humans via the bite of sandflies; results in skin lesions that may become chronic; endemic in 88 countries; 90% of cases occur in Iran, Afghanistan, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Brazil, and Peru; wild and domesticated animals as well as humans can act as reservoirs of infection. Plague - bacterial disease transmitted by fleas normally associated with rats; person-to-person airborne transmission also possible; recent plague epidemics occurred in areas of Asia, Africa, and South America associated with rural areas or small towns and villages; manifests as fever, headache, and painfully swollen lymph nodes; disease progresses rapidly and without antibiotic treatment leads to pneumonic form with a death rate in excess of 50%. Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever - tick-borne viral disease; infection may also result from exposure to infected animal blood or tissue; geographic distribution includes Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and Eastern Europe; sudden onset of fever, headache, and muscle aches followed by hemorrhaging in the bowels, urine, nose, and gums; mortality rate is approximately 30%. Rift Valley fever - viral disease affecting domesticated animals and humans; transmission is by mosquito and other biting insects; infection may also occur through handling of infected meat or contact with blood; geographic distribution includes eastern and southern Africa where cattle and sheep are raised; symptoms are generally mild with fever and some liver abnormalities, but the disease may progress to hemorrhagic fever, encephalitis, or ocular disease; fatality rates are low at about 1% of cases. Chikungunya - mosquito-borne (Aedes aegypti) viral disease associated with urban environments, similar to Dengue Fever; characterized by sudden onset of fever, rash, and severe joint pain usually lasting 3-7 days, some cases result in persistent arthritis. water contact diseases acquired through swimming or wading in freshwater lakes, streams, and rivers: Leptospirosis - bacterial disease that affects animals and humans; infection occurs through contact with water, food, or soil contaminated by animal urine; symptoms include high fever, severe headache, vomiting, jaundice, and diarrhea; untreated, the disease can result in kidney damage, liver failure, meningitis, or respiratory distress; fatality rates are low but left untreated recovery can take months. Schistosomiasis - caused by parasitic trematode flatworm Schistosoma; fresh water snails act as intermediate host and release larval form of parasite that penetrates the skin of people exposed to contaminated water; worms mature and reproduce in the blood vessels, liver, kidneys, and intestines releasing eggs, which become trapped in tissues triggering an immune response; may manifest as either urinary or intestinal disease resulting in decreased work or learning capacity; mortality, while generally low, may occur in advanced cases usually due to bladder cancer; endemic in 74 developing countries with 80% of infected people living in sub-Saharan Africa; humans act as the reservoir for this parasite. aerosolized dust or soil contact disease acquired through inhalation of aerosols contaminated with rodent urine: Lassa fever - viral disease carried by rats of the genus Mastomys; endemic in portions of West Africa; infection occurs through direct contact with or consumption of food contaminated by rodent urine or fecal matter containing virus particles; fatality rate can reach 50% in epidemic outbreaks. respiratory disease acquired through close contact with an infectious person: Meningococcal meningitis - bacterial disease causing an inflammation of the lining of the brain and spinal cord; one of the most important bacterial pathogens is Neisseria meningitidis because of its potential to cause epidemics; symptoms include stiff neck, high fever, headaches, and vomiting; bacteria are transmitted from person to person by respiratory droplets and facilitated by close and prolonged contact resulting from crowded living conditions, often with a seasonal distribution; death occurs in 5-15% of cases, typically within 24-48 hours of onset of symptoms; highest burden of meningococcal disease occurs in the hyperendemic region of sub-Saharan Africa known as the "Meningitis Belt" which stretches from Senegal east to Ethiopia. animal contact disease acquired through direct contact with local animals: Rabies - viral disease of mammals usually transmitted through the bite of an infected animal, most commonly dogs; virus affects the central nervous system causing brain alteration and death; symptoms initially are non-specific fever and headache progressing to neurological symptoms; death occurs within days of the onset of symptoms.

Manpower available for military service This entry gives the total numbers of males and females age 15-49 and assumes that every individual is fit to serve.

Manpower fit for military service This entry gives the number of males and females age 15-49 fit for military service. This is a more refined measure of potential military manpower availability which tries to account for the health situation in the country and reduces the maximum potential number to a more realistic estimate of the actual number fit to serve.

Manpower reaching military service age annually This entry gives the number of draft-age males and females entering the military manpower pool in any given year and is a measure of the availability of draft-age young adults.

Map references This entry includes the name of the Factbook reference map on which a country may be found. The entry on Geographic coordinates may be helpful in finding some smaller countries.

Maritime claims This entry includes the following claims, the definitions of which are excerpted from the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), which alone contains the full and definitive descriptions: territorial sea - the sovereignty of a coastal state extends beyond its land territory and internal waters to an adjacent belt of sea, described as the territorial sea in the UNCLOS (Part II); this sovereignty extends to the air space over the territorial sea as well as its underlying seabed and subsoil; every state has the right to establish the breadth of its territorial sea up to a limit not exceeding 12 nautical miles; the normal baseline for measuring the breadth of the territorial sea is the low-water line along the coast as marked on large-scale charts officially recognized by the coastal state; the UNCLOS describes specific rules for archipelagic states. contiguous zone - according to the UNCLOS (Article 33), this is a zone contiguous to a coastal state's territorial sea, over which it may exercise the control necessary to: prevent infringement of its customs, fiscal, immigration, or sanitary laws and regulations within its territory or territorial sea; punish infringement of the above laws and regulations committed within its territory or territorial sea; the contiguous zone may not extend beyond 24 nautical miles from the baselines from which the breadth of the territorial sea is measured (e.g. the US has claimed a 12-nautical mile contiguous zone in addition to its 12-nautical mile territorial sea). exclusive economic zone (EEZ) - the UNCLOS (Part V) defines the EEZ as a zone beyond and adjacent to the territorial sea in which a coastal state has: sovereign rights for the purpose of exploring and exploiting, conserving and managing the natural resources, whether living or non-living, of the waters superjacent to the seabed and of the seabed and its subsoil, and with regard to other activities for the economic exploitation and exploration of the zone, such as the production of energy from the water, currents, and winds; jurisdiction with regard to the establishment and use of artificial islands, installations, and structures; marine scientific research; the protection and preservation of the marine environment; the outer limit of the exclusive economic zone shall not exceed 200 nautical miles from the baselines from which the breadth of the territorial sea is measured. continental shelf - the UNCLOS (Article 76) defines the continental shelf of a coastal state as comprising the seabed and subsoil of the submarine areas that extend beyond its territorial sea throughout the natural prolongation of its land territory to the outer edge of the continental margin, or to a distance of 200 nautical miles from the baselines from which the breadth of the territorial sea is measured where the outer edge of the continental margin does not extend up to that distance; the continental margin comprises the submerged prolongation of the landmass of the coastal state, and consists of the seabed and subsoil of the shelf, the slope and the rise; wherever the continental margin extends beyond 200 nautical miles from the baseline, coastal states may extend their claim to a distance not to exceed 350 nautical miles from the baseline or 100 nautical miles from the 2500 meter isobath; it does not include the deep ocean floor with its oceanic ridges or the subsoil thereof. exclusive fishing zone - while this term is not used in the UNCLOS, some states (e.g. the United Kingdom) have chosen not to claim an EEZ, but rather to claim jurisdiction over the living resources off their coast; in such cases, the term exclusive fishing zone is often used; the breadth of this zone is normally the same as the EEZ or 200 nautical miles.

Median age This entry is the age that divides a population into two numerically equal groups; that is, half the people are younger than this age and half are older. It is a single index that summarizes the age distribution of a population. Currently, the median age ranges from a low of about 15 in Uganda and Gaza Strip to 40 or more in several European countries and Japan. See the entry for "Age structure" for the importance of a young versus an older age structure and, by implication, a low versus a higher median age.

Merchant marine Merchant marine may be defined as all ships engaged in the carriage of goods; or all commercial vessels (as opposed to all nonmilitary ships), which excludes tugs, fishing vessels, offshore oil rigs, etc. This entry contains information in four fields - total, ships by type, foreign-owned, and registered in other countries. Total includes the number of ships (1,000 GRT or over), total DWT for those ships, and total GRT for those ships. DWT or dead weight tonnage is the total weight of cargo, plus bunkers, stores, etc., that a ship can carry when immersed to the appropriate load line. GRT or gross register tonnage is a figure obtained by measuring the entire sheltered volume of a ship available for cargo and passengers and converting it to tons on the basis of 100 cubic feet per ton; there is no stable relationship between GRT and DWT. Ships by type includes a listing of barge carriers, bulk cargo ships, cargo ships, chemical tankers, combination bulk carriers, combination ore/oil carriers, container ships, liquefied gas tankers, livestock carriers, multifunctional large-load carriers, petroleum tankers, passenger ships, passenger/cargo ships, railcar carriers, refrigerated cargo ships, roll-on/roll-off cargo ships, short-sea passenger ships, specialized tankers, and vehicle carriers. Foreign-owned are ships that fly the flag of one country but belong to owners in another. Registered in other countries are ships that belong to owners in one country but fly the flag of another.

Military This category includes the entries dealing with a country's military structure, manpower, and expenditures.

Military - note This entry includes miscellaneous military information of significance not included elsewhere.

Military branches This entry lists the names of the ground, naval, air, marine, and other defense or security forces.

Military expenditures - dollar figure This entry gives current military expenditures in US dollars; the figure is calculated by multiplying the estimated defense spending in percentage terms by the gross domestic product (GDP) calculated on an exchange rate basis, not purchasing power parity (PPP) terms. Dollar figures for military expenditures should be treated with caution because of different price patterns and accounting methods among nations, as well as wide variations in the strength of their currencies.

Military expenditures - percent of GDP This entry gives current military expenditures as an estimated percent of gross domestic product (GDP). These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.

Military service age and obligation This entry gives the minimum age at which an individual may volunteer for military service or be subject to conscription.

Money figures All money figures are expressed in contemporaneous US dollars unless otherwise indicated.

National holiday This entry gives the primary national day of celebration - usually independence day.

Nationality This entry provides the identifying terms for citizens - noun and adjective.

Natural gas - consumption This entry is the total natural gas consumed in cubic meters (cu m). The discrepancy between the amount of natural gas produced and/or imported and the amount consumed and/or exported is due to the omission of stock changes and other complicating factors.

Natural gas - exports This entry is the total natural gas exported in cubic meters (cu m).

Natural gas - imports This entry is the total natural gas imported in cubic meters (cu m).

Natural gas - production This entry is the total natural gas produced in cubic meters (cu m). The discrepancy between the amount of natural gas produced and/or imported and the amount consumed and/or exported is due to the omission of stock changes and other complicating factors.

Natural gas - proved reserves This entry is the stock of proved reserves of natural gas in cubic meters (cu m). Proved reserves are those quantities of natural gas, which, by analysis of geological and engineering data, can be estimated with a high degree of confidence to be commercially recoverable from a given date forward, from known reservoirs and under current economic conditions.

Natural hazards This entry lists potential natural disasters.

Natural resources This entry lists a country's mineral, petroleum, hydropower, and other resources of commercial importance.

Net migration rate This entry includes the figure for the difference between the number of persons entering and leaving a country during the year per 1,000 persons (based on midyear population). An excess of persons entering the country is referred to as net immigration (e.g., 3.56 migrants/1,000 population); an excess of persons leaving the country as net emigration (e.g., -9.26 migrants/1,000 population). The net migration rate indicates the contribution of migration to the overall level of population change. High levels of migration can cause problems such as increasing unemployment and potential ethnic strife (if people are coming in) or a reduction in the labor force, perhaps in certain key sectors (if people are leaving).

Oil - consumption This entry is the total oil consumed in barrels per day (bbl/day). The discrepancy between the amount of oil produced and/or imported and the amount consumed and/or exported is due to the omission of stock changes, refinery gains, and other complicating factors.

Oil - exports This entry is the total oil exported in barrels per day (bbl/day), including both crude oil and oil products.

Oil - imports This entry is the total oil imported in barrels per day (bbl/day), including both crude oil and oil products.

Oil - production This entry is the total oil produced in barrels per day (bbl/day). The discrepancy between the amount of oil produced and/or imported and the amount consumed and/or exported is due to the omission of stock changes, refinery gains, and other complicating factors.

Oil - proved reserves This entry is the stock of proved reserves of crude oil in barrels (bbl). Proved reserves are those quantities of petroleum which, by analysis of geological and engineering data, can be estimated with a high degree of confidence to be commercially recoverable from a given date forward, from known reservoirs and under current economic conditions.

People This category includes the entries dealing with the characteristics of the people and their society.

People - note This entry includes miscellaneous demographic information of significance not included elsewhere.

Personal Names - Capitalization The Factbook capitalizes the surname or family name of individuals for the convenience of our users who are faced with a world of different cultures and naming conventions. The need for capitalization, bold type, underlining, italics, or some other indicator of the individual's surname is apparent in the following examples: MAO Zedong, Fidel CASTRO Ruz, George W. BUSH, and TUNKU SALAHUDDIN Abdul Aziz Shah ibni Al- Marhum Sultan Hisammuddin Alam Shah. By knowing the surname, a short form without all capital letters can be used with confidence as in President Castro, Chairman Mao, President Bush, or Sultan Tunku Salahuddin. The same system of capitalization is extended to the names of leaders with surnames that are not commonly used such as Queen ELIZABETH II.

Personal Names - Spelling The romanization of personal names in the Factbook normally follows the same transliteration system used by the US Board on Geographic Names for spelling place names. At times, however, a foreign leader expressly indicates a preference for, or the media or official documents regularly use, a romanized spelling that differs from the transliteration derived from the US Government standard. In such cases, the Factbook uses the alternative spelling.

Personal Names - Titles The Factbook capitalizes any valid title (or short form of it) immediately preceding a person's name. A title standing alone is not capitalized. Examples: President PUTIN and President BUSH are chiefs of state. In Russia, the president is chief of state and the premier is the head of the government, while in the US, the president is both chief of state and head of government.

Petroleum See entry for "oil."

Petroleum products See entry for "oil."

Pipelines This entry gives the lengths and types of pipelines for transporting products like natural gas, crude oil, or petroleum products.

Political parties and leaders This entry includes a listing of significant political organizations and their leaders.

Political pressure groups and leaders This entry includes a listing of organizations with leaders involved in politics, but not standing for legislative election.

Population This entry gives an estimate from the US Bureau of the Census based on statistics from population censuses, vital statistics registration systems, or sample surveys pertaining to the recent past and on assumptions about future trends. The total population presents one overall measure of the potential impact of the country on the world and within its region. Note: starting with the 1993 Factbook, demographic estimates for some countries (mostly African) have explicitly taken into account the effects of the growing impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. These countries are currently: The Bahamas, Benin, Botswana, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Burma, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo, Cote d'Ivoire, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Population below poverty line National estimates of the percentage of the population falling below the poverty line are based on surveys of sub-groups, with the results weighted by the number of people in each group. Definitions of poverty vary considerably among nations. For example, rich nations generally employ more generous standards of poverty than poor nations.

Population growth rate The average annual percent change in the population, resulting from a surplus (or deficit) of births over deaths and the balance of migrants entering and leaving a country. The rate may be positive or negative. The growth rate is a factor in determining how great a burden would be imposed on a country by the changing needs of its people for infrastructure (e.g., schools, hospitals, housing, roads), resources (e.g., food, water, electricity), and jobs. Rapid population growth can be seen as threatening by neighboring countries.

Ports and harbors This entry lists the major ports and harbors selected on the basis of overall importance to each country. This is determined by evaluating a number of factors (e.g., dollar value of goods handled, gross tonnage, facilities, military significance).

Public debt This entry records the cumulatiive total of all government borrowings less repayments that are denominated in a country's home currency. Public debt should not be confused with external debt, which reflects the foreign currency liabilities of both the private and public sector and must be financed out of foreign exchange earnings.

Radio broadcast stations This entry includes the total number of AM, FM, and shortwave broadcast stations.

Railways This entry states the total route length of the railway network and of its component parts by gauge: broad, standard, narrow, and dual. Other gauges are listed under note.

Reference maps This section includes world and regional maps.

Refugees and internally displaced persons This entry includes those persons residing in a country as refugees or internally displaced persons (IDPs). The definition of a refugee according to a United Nations Convention is "a person who is outside his/her country of nationality or habitual residence; has a well- founded fear of persecution because of his/her race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group or political opinion; and is unable or unwilling to avail himself/herself of the protection of that country, or to return there, for fear of persecution." The UN established the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in 1950 to handle refugee matters worldwide. The UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) has a different, operational definition for a Palestinian refugee: "a person whose normal place of residence was Palestine during the period 1 June 1946 to 15 May 1948 and who lost both home and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict." However, UNHCR also assists some 400,000 Palestinian refugees not covered under the UNRWA definition. The term "internally displaced person" is not specifically covered in the UN Convention; it is used to describe people who have fled their homes for reasons similar to refugees, but who remain within their own national territory and are subject to the laws of that state.

Religions This entry is an ordered listing of religions by adherents starting with the largest group and sometimes includes the percent of total population.

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold This entry gives the dollar value for the stock of all financial assets that are available to the central monetary authority for use in meeting a country's balance of payments needs as of the end-date of the period specified. This category includes not only foreign currency and gold, but also a country's holdings of Special Drawing Rights in the International Monetary Fund, and its reserve position in the Fund.

Sex ratio This entry includes the number of males for each female in five age groups - at birth, under 15 years, 15-64 years, 65 years and over, and for the total population. Sex ratio at birth has recently emerged as an indicator of certain kinds of sex discrimination in some countries. For instance, high sex ratios at birth in some Asian countries are now attributed to sex-selective abortion and infanticide due to a strong preference for sons. This will affect future marriage patterns and fertility patterns. Eventually, it could cause unrest among young adult males who are unable to find partners.

Suffrage This entry gives the age at enfranchisement and whether the right to vote is universal or restricted.

Telephone numbers All telephone numbers in the Factbook consist of the country code in brackets, the city or area code (where required) in parentheses, and the local number. The one component that is not presented is the international access code, which varies from country to country. For example, an international direct dial telephone call placed from the US to Madrid, Spain, would be as follows: 011 [34] (1) 577-xxxx, where 011 is the international access code for station-to-station calls; 01 is for calls other than station-to-station calls, [34] is the country code for Spain, (1) is the city code for Madrid, 577 is the local exchange, and xxxx is the local telephone number. An international direct dial telephone call placed from another country to the US would be as follows: international access code + [1] (202) 939-xxxx, where [ 1] is the country code for the US, (202) is the area code for Washington, DC, 939 is the local exchange, and xxxx is the local telephone number.

Telephone system This entry includes a brief general assessment of the system with details on the domestic and international components. The following terms and abbreviations are used throughout the entry: Africa ONE - a fiber-optic submarine cable link encircling the continent of Africa. Arabsat - Arab Satellite Communications Organization (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia). Autodin - Automatic Digital Network (US Department of Defense). CB - citizen's band mobile radio communications. cellular telephone system - the telephones in this system are radio transceivers, with each instrument having its own private radio frequency and sufficient radiated power to reach the booster station in its area (cell), from which the telephone signal is fed to a telephone exchange. Central American Microwave System - a trunk microwave radio relay system that links the countries of Central America and Mexico with each other. coaxial cable - a multichannel communication cable consisting of a central conducting wire, surrounded by and insulated from a cylindrical conducting shell; a large number of telephone channels can be made available within the insulated space by the use of a large number of carrier frequencies. Comsat - Communications Satellite Corporation (US). DSN - Defense Switched Network (formerly Automatic Voice Network or Autovon); basic general-purpose, switched voice network of the Defense Communications System (US Department of Defense). Eutelsat - European Telecommunications Satellite Organization (Paris). fiber-optic cable - a multichannel communications cable using a thread of optical glass fibers as a transmission medium in which the signal (voice, video, etc.) is in the form of a coded pulse of light. GSM - a global system for mobile (cellular) communications devised by the Groupe Special Mobile of the pan-European standardization organization, Conference Europeanne des Posts et Telecommunications (CEPT) in 1982. HF - high frequency; any radio frequency in the 3,000- to 30,000-kHz range. Inmarsat - International Maritime Satellite Organization (London); provider of global mobile satellite communications for commercial, distress, and safety applications at sea, in the air, and on land. Intelsat - International Telecommunications Satellite Organization (Washington, DC). Intersputnik - International Organization of Space Communications (Moscow); first established in the former Soviet Union and the East European countries, it is now marketing its services worldwide with earth stations in North America, Africa, and East Asia. landline - communication wire or cable of any sort that is installed on poles or buried in the ground. Marecs - Maritime European Communications Satellite used in the Inmarsat system on lease from the European Space Agency. Marisat - satellites of the Comsat Corporation that participate in the Inmarsat system. Medarabtel - the Middle East Telecommunications Project of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) providing a modern telecommunications network, primarily by microwave radio relay, linking Algeria, Djibouti, Egypt, Jordan, Libya, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, and Yemen; it was initially started in Morocco in 1970 by the Arab Telecommunications Union (ATU) and was known at that time as the Middle East Mediterranean Telecommunications Network. microwave radio relay - transmission of long distance telephone calls and television programs by highly directional radio microwaves that are received and sent on from one booster station to another on an optical path. NMT - Nordic Mobile Telephone; an analog cellular telephone system that was developed jointly by the national telecommunications authorities of the Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden). Orbita - a Russian television service; also the trade name of a packet- switched digital telephone network. radiotelephone communications - the two-way transmission and reception of sounds by broadcast radio on authorized frequencies using telephone handsets. PanAmSat - PanAmSat Corporation (Greenwich, CT). SAFE - South African Far East Cable satellite communication system - a communication system consisting of two or more earth stations and at least one satellite that provide long distance transmission of voice, data, and television; the system usually serves as a trunk connection between telephone exchanges; if the earth stations are in the same country, it is a domestic system. satellite earth station - a communications facility with a microwave radio transmitting and receiving antenna and required receiving and transmitting equipment for communicating with satellites. satellite link - a radio connection between a satellite and an earth station permitting communication between them, either one-way (down link from satellite to earth station - television receive-only transmission) or two-way (telephone channels). SHF - super high frequency; any radio frequency in the 3,000- to 30,000-MHz range. shortwave - radio frequencies (from 1.605 to 30 MHz) that fall above the commercial broadcast band and are used for communication over long distances. Solidaridad - geosynchronous satellites in Mexico's system of international telecommunications in the Western Hemisphere. Statsionar - Russia's geostationary system for satellite telecommunications. submarine cable - a cable designed for service under water. TAT - Trans-Atlantic Telephone; any of a number of high-capacity submarine coaxial telephone cables linking Europe with North America. telefax - facsimile service between subscriber stations via the public switched telephone network or the international Datel network. telegraph - a telecommunications system designed for unmodulated electric impulse transmission. telex - a communication service involving teletypewriters connected by wire through automatic exchanges. tropospheric scatter - a form of microwave radio transmission in which the troposphere is used to scatter and reflect a fraction of the incident radio waves back to earth; powerful, highly directional antennas are used to transmit and receive the microwave signals; reliable over-the-horizon communications are realized for distances up to 600 miles in a single hop; additional hops can extend the range of this system for very long distances. trunk network - a network of switching centers, connected by multichannel trunk lines. UHF - ultra high frequency; any radio frequency in the 300- to 3,000- MHz range. VHF - very high frequency; any radio frequency in the 30- to 300-MHz range.

Telephones - main lines in use This entry gives the total number of main telephone lines in use.

Telephones - mobile cellular This entry gives the total number of mobile cellular telephones in use.

Television broadcast stations This entry gives the total number of separate broadcast stations plus any repeater stations.

Terminology Due to the highly structured nature of the Factbook database, some collective generic terms have to be used. For example, the word Country in the Country name entry refers to a wide variety of dependencies, areas of special sovereignty, uninhabited islands, and other entities in addition to the traditional countries or independent states. Military is also used as an umbrella term for various civil defense, security, and defense activities in many entries. The Independence entry includes the usual colonial independence dates and former ruling states as well as other significant nationhood dates such as the traditional founding date or the date of unification, federation, confederation, establishment, or state succession that are not strictly independence dates. Dependent areas have the nature of their dependency status noted in this same entry.

Terrain This entry contains a brief description of the topography.

Total fertility rate This entry gives a figure for the average number of children that would be born per woman if all women lived to the end of their childbearing years and bore children according to a given fertility rate at each age. The total fertility rate (TFR) is a more direct measure of the level of fertility than the crude birth rate, since it refers to births per woman. This indicator shows the potential for population change in the country. A rate of two children per woman is considered the replacement rate for a population, resulting in relative stability in terms of total numbers. Rates above two children indicate populations growing in size and whose median age is declining. Higher rates may also indicate difficulties for families, in some situations, to feed and educate their children and for women to enter the labor force. Rates below two children indicate populations decreasing in size and growing older. Global fertility rates are in general decline and this trend is most pronounced in industrialized countries, especially Western Europe, where populations are projected to decline dramatically over the next 50 years.

Transnational issues This category includes three entries - Disputes - international, Refugees and internally displaced persons, and Illicit drugs - that deal with current issues going beyond national boundaries.

Transportation This category includes the entries dealing with the means for movement of people and goods.

Transportation - note This entry includes miscellaneous transportation information of significance not included elsewhere.

Unemployment rate This entry contains the percent of the labor force that is without jobs. Substantial underemployment might be noted.

Waterways This entry gives the total length of navigable rivers, canals, and other inland bodies of water.

Years All year references are for the calendar year (CY) unless indicated as fiscal year (FY). The calendar year is an accounting period of 12 months from 1 January to 31 December. The fiscal year is an accounting period of 12 months other than 1 January to 31 December.

Note: Information for the US and US dependencies was compiled from material in the public domain and does not represent Intelligence Community estimates.

This page was last updated on 20 October 2005

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History

The Intelligence Cycle is the process by which information is acquired, converted into intelligence, and made available to policymakers. Information is raw data from any source, data that may be fragmentary, contradictory, unreliable, ambiguous, deceptive, or wrong. Intelligence is information that has been collected, integrated, evaluated, analyzed, and interpreted. Finished intelligence is the final product of the Intelligence Cycle ready to be delivered to the policymaker.

The three types of finished intelligence are: basic, current, and estimative. Basic intelligence provides the fundamental and factual reference material on a country or issue. Current intelligence reports on new developments. Estimative intelligence judges probable outcomes. The three are mutually supportive: basic intelligence is the foundation on which the other two are constructed; current intelligence continually updates the inventory of knowledge; and estimative intelligence revises overall interpretations of country and issue prospects for guidance of basic and current intelligence. The World Factbook, The President's Daily Brief, and the National Intelligence Estimates are examples of the three types of finished intelligence.

The United States has carried on foreign intelligence activities since the days of George Washington but only since World War II have they been coordinated on a government-wide basis. Three programs have highlighted the development of coordinated basic intelligence since that time: (1) the Joint Army Navy Intelligence Studies (JANIS), (2) the National Intelligence Survey (NIS), and (3) The World Factbook.

During World War II, intelligence consumers realized that the production of basic intelligence by different components of the US Government resulted in a great duplication of effort and conflicting information. The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 brought home to leaders in Congress and the executive branch the need for integrating departmental reports to national policymakers. Detailed and coordinated information was needed not only on such major powers as Germany and Japan, but also on places of little previous interest. In the Pacific Theater, for example, the Navy and Marines had to launch amphibious operations against many islands about which information was unconfirmed or nonexistent. Intelligence authorities resolved that the United States should never again be caught unprepared.

In 1943, Gen. George B. Strong (G-2), Adm. H. C. Train (Office of Naval Intelligence - ONI), and Gen. William J. Donovan (Director of the Office of Strategic Services - OSS) decided that a joint effort should be initiated. A steering committee was appointed on 27 April 1943 that recommended the formation of a Joint Intelligence Study Publishing Board to assemble, edit, coordinate, and publish the Joint Army Navy Intelligence Studies (JANIS). JANIS was the first interdepartmental basic intelligence program to fulfill the needs of the US Government for an authoritative and coordinated appraisal of strategic basic intelligence. Between April 1943 and July 1947, the board published 34 JANIS studies. JANIS performed well in the war effort, and numerous letters of commendation were received, including a statement from Adm. Forrest Sherman, Chief of Staff, Pacific Ocean Areas, which said, "JANIS has become the indispensable reference work for the shore-based planners."

The need for more comprehensive basic intelligence in the postwar world was well expressed in 1946 by George S. Pettee, a noted author on national security. He wrote in The Future of American Secret Intelligence (Infantry Journal Press, 1946, page 46) that world leadership in peace requires even more elaborate intelligence than in war. "The conduct of peace involves all countries, all human activities - not just the enemy and his war production."

The Central Intelligence Agency was established on 26 July 1947 and officially began operating on 18 September 1947. Effective 1 October 1947, the Director of Central Intelligence assumed operational responsibility for JANIS. On 13 January 1948, the National Security Council issued Intelligence Directive (NSCID) No. 3, which authorized the National Intelligence Survey (NIS) program as a peacetime replacement for the wartime JANIS program. Before adequate NIS country sections could be produced, government agencies had to develop more comprehensive gazetteers and better maps. The US Board on Geographic Names (BGN) compiled the names; the Department of the Interior produced the gazetteers; and CIA produced the maps.

The Hoover Commission's Clark Committee, set up in 1954 to study the structure and administration of the CIA, reported to Congress in 1955 that: "The National Intelligence Survey is an invaluable publication which provides the essential elements of basic intelligence on all areas of the world. There will always be a continuing requirement for keeping the Survey up-to-date." The Factbook was created as an annual summary and update to the encyclopedic NIS studies. The first classified Factbook was published in August 1962, and the first unclassified version was published in June 1971. The NIS program was terminated in 1973 except for the Factbook, map, and gazetteer components. The 1975 Factbook was the first to be made available to the public with sales through the US Government Printing Office (GPO). The year 2005 marks the 58th anniversary of the establishment of the Central Intelligence Agency and the 62nd year of continuous basic intelligence support to the US Government by The World Factbook and its two predecessor programs.

This page was last updated on 28 April, 2005

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Contributors and Copyright Information

The World Factbook is prepared by the Central Intelligence Agency for the use of US Government officials, and the style, format, coverage, and content are designed to meet their specific requirements. Information is provided by Antarctic Information Program (National Science Foundation), Bureau of the Census (Department of Commerce), Bureau of Labor Statistics (Department of Labor), Central Intelligence Agency, Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programs, Defense Intelligence Agency (Department of Defense), Department of State, Fish and Wildlife Service (Department of the Interior), National Geospatial- Intelligence Agency (Department of Defense), Naval Facilities Engineering Command (Department of Defense), Office of Insular Affairs (Department of the Interior), US Board on Geographic Names (Department of the Interior), and other public and private sources.

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This page was last updated on 27 September, 2005

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@Afghanistan

Introduction Afghanistan

Background: Afghanistan's recent history is a story of war and civil unrest. The Soviet Union invaded in 1979, but was forced to withdraw 10 years later by anti-Communist mujahidin forces. The Communist regime in Kabul collapsed in 1992. Fighting that subsequently erupted among the various mujahidin factions eventually helped to spawn the Taliban, a hardline Pakistani-sponsored movement that fought to end the warlordism and civil war that gripped the country. The Taliban seized Kabul in 1996 and were able to capture most of the country outside of Northern Alliance strongholds primarily in the northeast. Following the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks, a US, Allied, and Northern Alliance military action toppled the Taliban for sheltering Osama BIN LADIN. In late 2001, a conference in Bonn, Germany, established a process for political reconstruction that ultimately resulted in the adoption of a new constitution and presidential election in 2004. On 9 October 2004, Hamid KARZAI became the first democratically elected president of Afghanistan. The new Afghan government's next task is to hold National Assembly elections, tentatively scheduled for April 2005.

Geography Afghanistan

Location: Southern Asia, north and west of Pakistan, east of Iran

Geographic coordinates: 33 00 N, 65 00 E

Map references: Asia

Area: total: 647,500 sq km land: 647,500 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Texas

Land boundaries: total: 5,529 km border countries: China 76 km, Iran 936 km, Pakistan 2,430 km, Tajikistan 1,206 km, Turkmenistan 744 km, Uzbekistan 137 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: arid to semiarid; cold winters and hot summers

Terrain: mostly rugged mountains; plains in north and southwest

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Amu Darya 258 m highest point: Nowshak 7,485 m

Natural resources: natural gas, petroleum, coal, copper, chromite, talc, barites, sulfur, lead, zinc, iron ore, salt, precious and semiprecious stones

Land use: arable land: 12.13% permanent crops: 0.22% other: 87.65% (2001)

Irrigated land: 23,860 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: damaging earthquakes occur in Hindu Kush mountains; flooding; droughts

Environment - current issues: limited natural fresh water resources; inadequate supplies of potable water; soil degradation; overgrazing; deforestation (much of the remaining forests are being cut down for fuel and building materials); desertification; air and water pollution

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Marine Dumping signed, but not ratified: Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Life Conservation

Geography - note: landlocked; the Hindu Kush mountains that run northeast to southwest divide the northern provinces from the rest of the country; the highest peaks are in the northern Vakhan (Wakhan Corridor)

People Afghanistan

Population: 29,928,987 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 44.7% (male 6,842,857/female 6,524,485) 15-64 years: 52.9% (male 8,124,077/female 7,713,603) 65 years and over: 2.4% (male 353,193/female 370,772) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 17.56 years male: 17.55 years female: 17.57 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 4.77% note: this rate does not take into consideration the recent war and its continuing impact (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 47.02 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 20.75 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 21.43 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.95 male(s)/female total population: 1.05 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 163.07 deaths/1,000 live births male: 167.79 deaths/1,000 live births female: 158.12 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 42.9 years male: 42.71 years female: 43.1 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 6.75 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.01% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne disease: malaria is a high risk countrywide below 2,000 meters from March through November animal contact disease: rabies (2004)

Nationality: noun: Afghan(s) adjective: Afghan

Ethnic groups: Pashtun 42%, Tajik 27%, Hazara 9%, Uzbek 9%, Aimak 4%, Turkmen 3%, Baloch 2%, other 4%

Religions: Sunni Muslim 80%, Shi'a Muslim 19%, other 1%

Languages: Afghan Persian or Dari (official) 50%, Pashtu (official) 35%, Turkic languages (primarily Uzbek and Turkmen) 11%, 30 minor languages (primarily Balochi and Pashai) 4%, much bilingualism

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 36% male: 51% female: 21% (1999 est.)

People - note: of the estimated 4 million refugees in October 2001, 2.3 million have returned

Government Afghanistan

Country name: conventional long form: Islamic Republic of Afghanistan conventional short form: Afghanistan local long form: Jomhuri-ye Eslami-ye Afghanestan local short form: Afghanestan former: Republic of Afghanistan

Government type: Islamic republic

Capital: Kabul

Administrative divisions: 34 provinces (velayat, singular - velayat); Badakhshan, Badghis, Baghlan, Balkh, Bamian, Daykondi, Farah, Faryab, Ghazni, Ghowr, Helmand, Herat, Jowzjan, Kabol, Kandahar, Kapisa, Khowst, Konar, Kondoz, Laghman, Lowgar, Nangarhar, Nimruz, Nurestan, Oruzgan, Paktia, Paktika, Panjshir, Parvan, Samangan, Sar-e Pol, Takhar, Vardak, and Zabol

Independence: 19 August 1919 (from UK control over Afghan foreign affairs)

National holiday: Independence Day, 19 August (1919)

Constitution: new constitution drafted 14 December 2003 - 4 January 2004; signed 16 January 2004

Legal system: according to the new constitution, no law should be "contrary to Islam"; the state is obliged to create a prosperous and progressive society based on social justice, protection of human dignity, protection of human rights, realization of democracy, and to ensure national unity and equality among all ethnic groups and tribes; the state shall abide by the UN charter, international treaties, international conventions that Afghanistan signed, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan Hamid KARZAI (since 7 December 2004); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government; former King ZAHIR Shah holds the honorific, "Father of the Country," and presides symbolically over certain occasions, but lacks any governing authority; the honorific is not hereditary head of government: President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan Hamid KARZAI (since 7 December 2004); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government cabinet: 27 ministers; note - under the new constitution, ministers are appointed by the president and approved by the National Assembly elections: the president and two vice presidents are elected by direct vote for a five-year term; if no candidate receives 50% or more of the vote in the first round of voting, the two candidates with the most votes will participate in a second round; a president can only be elected for two terms; election last held 9 October 2004 (next to be held in 2009) election results: Hamid KARZAI elected president; percent of vote - Hamid KARZAI 55.4%, Yunus QANOONI 16.3%, Ustad Mohammad MOHAQQEQ 11.6%, Abdul Rashid DOSTAM 10.0%, Abdul Latif PEDRAM 1.4%, Masooda JALAL 1.2%

Legislative branch: nonfunctioning as of January 2004; government is empowered by the constitution to issue legislation by decree until the new assembly is seated; under the new constitution, the bicameral National Assembly will consist of the Wolesi Jirga or House of People (no more than 249 seats), directly elected for a five-year term, and the Meshrano Jirga or House of Elders (102 seats, one third elected from provincial councils for a four-year term, one third elected from local district councils for a three-year term, and one third presidential appointees for a five-year term; the presidential appointees will include two representatives of Kuchis and two representatives of the disabled; half of the presidential appointees will be women) note: on rare occasions the government may convene the Loya Jirga on issues of independence, national sovereignty, and territorial integrity; it can amend the provisions of the constitution and prosecute the president; it is made up of members of the National Assembly and chairpersons of the provincial and district councils elections: scheduled for spring 2005

Judicial branch: the new constitution establishes a nine-member Stera Mahkama or Supreme Court (its nine justices are appointed for 10-year terms by the president with approval of the Wolesi Jirga) and subordinate High Courts and Appeals Courts; there is also a Minister of Justice; a separate Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission established by the Bonn Agreement is charged with investigating human rights abuses and war crimes

Political parties and leaders: note - includes only political parties approved by the Ministry of Justice: Afghan Millat [Anwarul Haq AHADI]; De Afghanistan De Solay Ghorzang Gond [Shahnawaz TANAI]; De Afghanistan De Solay Mili Islami Gond [Shah Mahmood Polal ZAI]; Harakat-e-Islami Afghanistan [Mohammad Asif MOHSINEE]; Hezb-e-Aarman-e-Mardum-e-Afghanistan [Iihaj Saraj-u-din ZAFAREE]; Hezb-e-Aazadee Afghanistan [Abdul MALIK]; Hezb-e-Adalat-e-Islami Afghanistan [Mohammad Kabeer MARZBAN]; Hezb-e-Afghanistan-e-Wahid [Mohammad Wasil RAHEEMEE]; Hezb-e-Afghan Watan Islami Gond [leader NA]; Hezb-e-Congra-e-Mili Afghanistan [Latif PEDRAM]; Hezb-e-Falah-e-Mardum-e-Afghanistan [Mohammad ZAREEF]; Hezb-e-Libral-e-Aazadee Khwa-e-Mardum-e-Afghanistan [Ajmal SOHAIL]; Hezb-e-Hambastagee Mili Jawanan-e-Afghanistan [Mohammad Jamil KARZAI]; Hezb-e-Hamnbatagee-e-Afghanistan [Abdul Khaleq NEMAT]; Hezb-e-Harakat-e-Mili Wahdat-e-Afghanistan [Mohammad Nadir AATASH]; Hezb-e-Harak-e-Islami Mardum-e-Afghanistan [Ilhaj Said Hssain ANWARY]; Hezb-e-Ifazat Az Uqoq-e-Bashar Wa Inkishaf-e-Afghanistan [Baryalai NASRATEE]; Hezb-e-Istiqlal-e-Afghanistan [Dr. Gh. Farooq NIJZRABEE]; Hezb-e-Jamhoree Khwahan [Sibghatullah SANJAR]; Hezb-e-Kar Wa Tawsiha-e-Afghanistan [Zulfiar OMID]; Hezb-e-Mili Afghanistan [Abdul Rasheed AARYAN]; Hezb-e-Mili Wahdat-e-Aqwam-e-Islami Afghanistan [Mohammad Shah KHOGYANEE]; Hezb-e-Nuhzhat-e-Mili Afghanistan [Ahmad Wali MASOUD]; Hezb-e-Paiwand-e-Mili Afghanistan [Said Mansoor NADIRI]; Hezb-e-Rastakhaiz-e-Islami Mardum-e-Afghanistan [Said ZAHIR]; Hezb-e-Refah-e-Mardum-e-Afghanistan [Mia Gul WASEEQ]; Hezb-e-Risalat-e-Mardum-e-Afghanistan [Noor Aqa ROEEN]; Hezb-e-Sahadat-e-Mardum-e-Afghanistan [Mohammad Zubair PAIROZ]; Hezb-e-Sahadat-e-Mili Wa Islami Afghanistan [Mohammad Usman SALIGZADA]; Hezb-e-Sulh-e-Mili Islami Aqwam-e-Afghanistan [Abdul Qahir SHARYATEE]; Hezb-e-Sulh Wa Wahdat-e-Mili Afghanistan [Abdul Qadir IMAMEE]; Hezb-e-Tafahum-e-Wa Democracy Afghanistan [Ahamad SHAHEEN]; Hezb-e-Wahdat-e-Islami Afghanistan [Mohammad Karim KHALILI]; Hezb-e-Wahdat-e-Islami Mardum-e-Afghanistan [Ustad Mohammad MOHAQQEQ]; Hezb-e-Wahdat-e-Mili Afghanistan [Abdul Rasheed Jalili]; Jamahat-ul-Dahwat ilal Qurhan-wa-Sunat-ul-Afghanistan [Mawlawee Samiullah NAJEEBEE]; Jombesh-e Milli [Abdul Rashid DOSTAM]; Mahaz-e-Mili Islami Afghanistan [Said Ahmad GAILANEE]; Majmah-e-Mili Fahaleen-e-Sulh-e-Afghanistan [Shams ul Haq Noor SHAMS]; Nuhzat-e-Aazadee Wa democracy Afghanistan [Abdul Raqeeb Jawid KUHISTANEE]; Nuhzat-e-Hambastagee Mili Afghanistan [Peer Said Ishaq GAILANEE]; Sazman-e-Islami Afghanistan-e-Jawan [Siad Jawad HUSSAINEE]; Tahreek Wahdat-e-Mili [Sultan Mahmood DHAZI] (30 Sep 2004)

Political pressure groups and leaders: Jamiat-e Islami (Society of Islam) [former President Burhanuddin RABBANI]; Ittihad-e Islami (Islamic Union for the Liberation of Afghanistan), [Abdul Rasul SAYYAF]; there are also small monarchist, communist, and democratic groups

International organization participation: AsDB, CP, ECO, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ITU, MIGA, NAM, OIC, OPCW, SACEP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WMO, WTO (observer), WToO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Said Tayeb JAWAD chancery: 2118 Kalorama Road NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] 202-483-6410 FAX: [1] 202-483-6488 consulate(s) general: Los Angeles, New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Zalmay KHALILZAD embassy: The Great Masood Road, Kabul mailing address: 6180 Kabul Place, Dulles, VA 20189-6180 telephone: [00] (2) 230-0436 FAX: [0093] (2) 230-1364

Flag description: three equal vertical bands of black (hoist), red, and green, with a gold emblem centered on the red band; the emblem features a temple-like structure encircled by a wreath on the left and right and by a bold Islamic inscription above

Economy Afghanistan

Economy - overview: Afghanistan's economic outlook has improved significantly since the fall of the Taliban regime in 2001 because of the infusion of over $2 billion in international assistance, recovery of the agricultural sector, and the reestablishment of market institutions. Agriculture boomed in 2003 with the end of a four-year drought, but drought conditions returned for the southern half of the country in 2004. Despite the progress of the past few years, Afghanistan remains extremely poor, landlocked, and highly dependent on foreign aid, farming, and trade with neighboring countries. It will probably take the remainder of the decade and continuing donor aid and attention to raise Afghanistan's living standards up from its current status among the lowest in the world. Much of the population continues to suffer from shortages of housing, clean water, electricity, medical care, and jobs, but the Afghan government and international donors remain committed to improving access to these basic necessities by prioritizing infrastructure development, education, housing development, jobs programs, and economic reform over the next year. Growing political stability and continued international commitment to Afghan reconstruction create an optimistic outlook for maintaining improvements in the Afghan economy in 2005. Expanding poppy cultivation and a growing opium trade may account for one-third of GDP and looms as one of Kabul's most serious policy challenges.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $21.5 billion (2003 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 7.5% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $800 (2003 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 60% industry: 20% services: 20% (1990 est.)

Labor force: 11.8 million (2001 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 80%, industry 10%, services 10% (2004 est.)

Unemployment rate: NA

Population below poverty line: 53% (2003)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 10.3% (2003)

Budget: revenues: $300 million expenditures: $609 million, including capital expenditures of NA (FY04-05 budget)

Agriculture - products: opium, wheat, fruits, nuts, wool, mutton, sheepskins, lambskins

Industries: small-scale production of textiles, soap, furniture, shoes, fertilizer, cement; handwoven carpets; natural gas, coal, copper

Industrial production growth rate: NA

Electricity - production: 540 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 36.3% hydro: 63.7% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 652.2 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 150 million kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 3,500 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 0 bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - production: 220 million cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 220 million cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 49.98 billion cu m (1 January 2002)

Exports: $446 million (not including illicit exports or reexports) (FY03-04)

Exports - commodities: opium, fruits and nuts, handwoven carpets, wool, cotton, hides and pelts, precious and semi-precious gems

Exports - partners: Pakistan 24%, India 21.3%, US 12.4%, Germany 5.5% (2004)

Imports: $3.759 billion (FY03-04)

Imports - commodities: capital goods, food, textiles, petroleum products

Imports - partners: Pakistan 25.5%, US 8.7%, India 8.5%, Germany 6.5%, Turkmenistan 5.3%, Kenya 4.7%, South Korea 4.2%, Russia 4.2% (2004)

Debt - external: $8 billion in bilateral debt, mostly to Russia; Afghanistan has $500 million in debt to Multilateral Development Banks (2004)

Economic aid - recipient: international pledges made by more than 60 countries and international financial institutions at the Berlin Donors Conference for Afghan reconstruction in March 2004 reached $8.9 billion for 2004-09

Currency (code): afghani (AFA)

Currency code: AFA

Exchange rates: afghanis per US dollar - 3,000 (2004), 3,000 (2003), 3,000 (2002), 3,000 (2001), 3,000 (2000) note: in 2002, the afghani was revalued and the currency stabilized at about 50 afghanis to the dollar; before 2002, the market rate varied widely from the official rate

Fiscal year: 21 March - 20 March

Communications Afghanistan

Telephones - main lines in use: 33,100 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 15,000 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: very limited telephone and telegraph service domestic: telephone service improving with the establishment of two mobile phone operators by 2003; telephone main lines remain weak with only 0.1 line per 10 people international: country code - 93; five VSAT's installed in Kabul, Herat, Mazar-e-Sharif, Kandahar, and Jalalabad provide international and domestic voice and data connectivity

Radio broadcast stations: AM 21, FM 23, shortwave 1 (broadcasts in Pashtu, Afghan Persian (Dari), Urdu, and English) (2003)

Radios: 167,000 (1999)

Television broadcast stations: at least 10 (one government-run central television station in Kabul and regional stations in nine of the 32 provinces; the regional stations operate on a reduced schedule; also, in 1997, there was a station in Mazar-e Sharif reaching four northern Afghanistan provinces) (1998)

Televisions: 100,000 (1999)

Internet country code: .af

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)

Internet users: 1,000 (2002)

Communications - note: in March 2003 'af' was established as Afghanistan's domain name; Internet access is growing through Internet cafes as well as public "telekiosks" in Kabul that are part of a nationwide network proposed by the Transitional Authority for Internet access (2002)

Transportation Afghanistan

Highways: total: 21,000 km paved: 2,793 km unpaved: 18,207 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: 1,200 km note: chiefly Amu Darya, which handles vessels up to 500 DWT (2004)

Pipelines: gas 387 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Kheyrabad, Shir Khan

Airports: 47 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 10 over 3,047 m: 3 2,438 to 3,047 m: 4 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 37 over 3,047 m: 1 2,438 to 3,047 m: 7 1,524 to 2,437 m: 14 914 to 1,523 m: 4 under 914 m: 11 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 5 (2004 est.)

Military Afghanistan

Military branches: Afghan National Army (includes Afghan Air Force), Afghan Militia Force (AMF) (2005)

Military service age and obligation: 22 years of age; inductees are contracted into service for a 4-year term (2005)

Manpower available for military service: males age 22-49: 4,952,812 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 22-49: 2,662,946 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 275,362 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $188.4 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 2.6% (2004)

Transnational Issues Afghanistan

Disputes - international: the UN has been able to repatriate over two million Afghan refugees but several million more continue to reside in Iran and Pakistan in camps and elsewhere, many at their own choosing; Coalition and Pakistani forces continue to patrol remote tribal areas to control the borders and stem organized terrorist and other illegal cross-border activities; regular meetings between Pakistani and Coalition allies aim to resolve periodic claims of boundary encroachments; occasional conflicts over water-sharing arrangements with Amu Darya and Helmand River states

Refugees and internally displaced persons: IDPs: 167,000 - 200,000 (mostly Pashtuns and Kuchis displaced in south and west due to drought and instability) (2004)

Illicit drugs: world's largest producer of opium; cultivation of opium poppy reached unprecedented level of 206,700 hectares in 2004; counterdrug efforts largely unsuccessful; potential opium production of 4,950 metric tons; potential heroin production of 582 metric tons if all opium was processed; source of hashish; many narcotics-processing labs throughout the country; drug trade source of instability and some antigovernment groups profit from the trade; 80-90% of the heroin consumed in Europe comes from Afghan opium; vulnerable to narcotics money laundering through informal financial networks

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Akrotiri

Introduction Akrotiri

Background: By terms of the 1960 Treaty of Establishment that created the independent Republic of Cyprus, the UK retained full sovereignty and jurisdiction over two areas of almost 254 square kilometers in total: Akrotiri and Dhekelia. The southernmost and smallest of these is the Akrotiri Sovereign Base Area, which is also referred to as the Western Sovereign Base Area.

Geography Akrotiri

Location: peninsula on the southwest coast of Cyprus

Geographic coordinates: 34 37 N, 32 58 E

Map references: Middle East

Area: total: 123 sq km note: includes a salt lake and wetlands

Area - comparative: about 0.7 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: total: 47.4 km border countries: Cyprus 47.4 km

Coastline: 56.3 km

Climate: temperate; Mediterranean with hot, dry summers and cool winters

Environment - current issues: shooting around the salt lake; note - breeding place for loggerhead and green turtles; only remaining colony of griffon vultures is on the base

Geography - note: British extraterritorial rights also extended to several small off-post sites scattered across Cyprus

People Akrotiri

Population: no indigenous inhabitants note: approximately 1,300 military personnel are on the base; there are another 5,000 British citizens who are families of military personnel or civilian staff on both Akrotiri and Dhekelia; Cyprus citizens work on the base, but do not live there

Languages: English, Greek

Government Akrotiri

Country name: conventional long form: Akrotiri Sovereign Base Area conventional short form: Akrotiri

Dependency status: overseas territory of UK; administered by an administrator who is also the Commander, British Forces Cyprus

Capital: Episkopi Cantonment; also serves as capital of Dhekelia

Legal system: the laws of the UK, where applicable, apply

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen Elizabeth II (since 6 February 1952) head of government: Administrator Maj. Gen. Peter Thomas Clayton PEARSON (since 9 May 2003); note - reports to the British Ministry of Defence elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; the administrator is appointed by the monarch

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Flag description: the flag of the UK is used

Economy Akrotiri

Economy - overview: Economic activity is limited to providing services to the military and their families located in Akrotiri. All food and manufactured goods must be imported.

Military Akrotiri

Military - note: Akrotiri has a full RAF base, Headquarters for British Forces on Cyprus, and Episkopi Support Unit

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Albania

Introduction Albania

Background: Between 1990 and 1992 Albania ended 46 years of xenophobic Communist rule and established a multiparty democracy. The transition has proven difficult as successive governments have tried to deal with high unemployment, widespread corruption, a dilapidated infrastructure, powerful organized crime networks with links to government officials, and disruptive political opponents. Albania has made incremental progress in its democratic development since first holding multiiparty elections in 1991, but deficiencies remain - particularly in regard to the rule of law. Despite some lingering problems, international observers have judged elections to be largely free and fair since the restoration of political stability following the collapse of pyramid schemes in 1997. In the 2005 general elections, the Democratic Party and its allies won a decisive victory on pledges of reducing crime and corruption, promoting economic growth, and decreasing the size of government. Although Albania's economy continues to grow, the country is still one of the poorest in Europe, hampered by a large informal economy, large public debt, and an inadequate energy and tranportation infrastructure. Albania has played a largely helpful role in managing inter-ethnic tensions in southeastern Europe, and is continuing to work toward joining NATO and the EU.

Geography Albania

Location: Southeastern Europe, bordering the Adriatic Sea and Ionian Sea, between Greece and Serbia and Montenegro

Geographic coordinates: 41 00 N, 20 00 E

Map references: Europe

Area: total: 28,748 sq km land: 27,398 sq km water: 1,350 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Maryland

Land boundaries: total: 720 km border countries: Greece 282 km, Macedonia 151 km, Serbia and Montenegro 287 km

Coastline: 362 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation

Climate: mild temperate; cool, cloudy, wet winters; hot, clear, dry summers; interior is cooler and wetter

Terrain: mostly mountains and hills; small plains along coast

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Adriatic Sea 0 m highest point: Maja e Korabit (Golem Korab) 2,764 m

Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas, coal, bauxite, chromite, copper, iron ore, nickel, salt, timber, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 21.09% permanent crops: 4.42% other: 74.49% (2001)

Irrigated land: 3,400 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: destructive earthquakes; tsunamis occur along southwestern coast; floods; drought

Environment - current issues: deforestation; soil erosion; water pollution from industrial and domestic effluents

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: strategic location along Strait of Otranto (links Adriatic Sea to Ionian Sea and Mediterranean Sea)

People Albania

Population: 3,563,112 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 25.6% (male 476,989/female 434,298) 15-64 years: 65.8% (male 1,199,964/female 1,144,886) 65 years and over: 8.6% (male 141,559/female 165,416) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 28.52 years male: 27.95 years female: 29.1 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.52% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 15.08 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 5.12 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -4.8 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.1 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.1 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.86 male(s)/female total population: 1.04 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 21.52 deaths/1,000 live births male: 21.96 deaths/1,000 live births female: 21.03 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 77.24 years male: 74.6 years female: 80.15 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.04 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA%

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Albanian(s) adjective: Albanian

Ethnic groups: Albanian 95%, Greek 3%, other 2% (Vlach, Roma (Gypsy), Serb, Macedonian, Bulgarian) (1989 est.) note: in 1989, other estimates of the Greek population ranged from 1% (official Albanian statistics) to 12% (from a Greek organization)

Religions: Muslim 70%, Albanian Orthodox 20%, Roman Catholic 10% note: percentages are estimates; there are no available current statistics on religious affiliation; all mosques and churches were closed in 1967 and religious observances prohibited; in November 1990, Albania began allowing private religious practice

Languages: Albanian (official - derived from Tosk dialect), Greek, Vlach, Romani, Slavic dialects

Literacy: definition: age 9 and over can read and write total population: 86.5% male: 93.3% female: 79.5% (2003 est.)

Government Albania

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Albania conventional short form: Albania local long form: Republika e Shqiperise local short form: Shqiperia former: People's Socialist Republic of Albania

Government type: emerging democracy

Capital: Tirana

Administrative divisions: 12 counties (qarqe, singular - qark); Qarku i Beratit, Qarku i Dibres, Qarku i Durresit, Qarku i Elbasanit, Qarku i Fierit, Qarku i Gjirokastres, Qarku i Korces, Qarku i Kukesit, Qarku i Lezhes, Qarku i Shkodres, Qarku i Tiranes, Qarku i Vlores

Independence: 28 November 1912 (from Ottoman Empire)

National holiday: Independence Day, 28 November (1912)

Constitution: adopted by popular referendum on 28 November 1998

Legal system: has a civil law system; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction; has accepted jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court for its citizens

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President of the Republic Alfred MOISIU (since 24 July 2002) head of government: Prime Minister Sali BERISHA (since 10 September 2005) cabinet: Council of Ministers proposed by the prime minister, nominated by the president, and approved by parliament elections: president elected by the People's Assembly for a five-year term; election last held 24 June 2002 (next to be held June 2007); prime minister appointed by the president election results: Alfred MOISIU elected president; People's Assembly vote by number - total votes 116, for 97, against 19

Legislative branch: unicameral People's Assembly or Kuvendi Popullor (140 seats; 100 are elected by direct popular vote and 40 by proportional vote for four-year terms) elections: last held 4 July 2005 (next to be held July 2009) election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PD 55, PS 40, PR 11, PSD 7, LSI 5, other 22

Judicial branch: Constitutional Court, Supreme Court (chairman is elected by the People's Assembly for a four-year term), and multiple appeals and district courts

Political parties and leaders: Agrarian Environmentalist Party or PAA [Lufter XHUVELI]; Christian Democratic Party or PDK [Nikolle LESI]; Communist Party of Albania or PKSH [Hysni MILLOSHI]; Democratic Alliance Party or PAD [Neritan CEKA]; Democratic Party or PD [Sali BERISHA]; Legality Movement Party or PLL [Ekrem SPAHIU]; Liberal Union Party or PBL [Arjan STAROVA]; National Front Party (Balli Kombetar) or PBK [Adriatik ALIMADHI]; New Democratic Party or PDR [Genc POLLO]; Party of National Unity or PUK [Idajet BEQIRI]; Renewed Democratic Party or PDR [Dashamir SHEHI]; Republican Party or PR [Fatmir MEDIU]; Social Democracy Party or PDS [Paskal MILO]; Social Democratic Party or PSD [Skender GJINUSHI]; Socialist Movement for Integration or LSI [Ilir META]; Socialist Party or PS (formerly the Albanian Party of Labor) [Fatos NANO]; Union for Human Rights Party or PBDNJ [Vangjel DULE]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Confederation of Trade Unions of Albania or KSSH [Kastriot MUCO]; Front for Albanian National Unification or FBKSH [Gafur ADILI]; Omonia [Jani JANI]; Union of Independent Trade Unions of Albania or BSPSH [Gezim KALAJA]

International organization participation: ACCT, BSEC, CE, CEI, EAPC, EBRD, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO (correspondent), ITU, MIGA, OIC, OPCW, OSCE, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNOMIG, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Agim NESHO chancery: 2100 S Street NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 223-4942 FAX: [1] (202) 628-7342

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Marcie B. RIES embassy: Rruga Elbasanit, Labinoti #103, Tirana mailing address: U. S. Department of State, 9510 Tirana Place, Dulles, VA 20189-9510 telephone: [355] (4) 247285 FAX: [355] (4) 374957 and [355] (4) 232222

Flag description: red with a black two-headed eagle in the center

Economy Albania

Economy - overview: Poor and backward by European standards, Albania is making the difficult transition to a more modern open-market economy. The government has taken measures to curb violent crime and to spur economic activity and trade. The economy is bolstered by annual remittances from abroad of $600-$800 million, mostly from Greece and Italy; this helps offset the towering trade deficit. Agriculture, which accounts for about one-half of GDP, is held back because of frequent drought and the need to modernize equipment, to clarify property rights, and to consolidate small plots of land. Energy shortages and antiquated and inadequate infrastructure make it difficult to attract and sustain foreign investment. The planned construction of a new thermal power plant near Vlore and improved transmission and distribution facilities will help relieve the energy shortages. Also, the government is moving slowly to improve the poor national road and rail network, a long-standing barrier to sustained economic growth. On the positive side: growth was strong in 2003 and 2004, the nation has important oil and gas reserves, and inflation is not a problem.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $17.46 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 5.6% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $4,900 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 46.2% industry: 25.4% services: 28.4% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 1.09 million (not including 352,000 emigrant workers) (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 57%, non-agricultural private sector 20%, public sector 23% (2004 est.)

Unemployment rate: 14.8% officially; may be as high as 30% (2001 est.)

Population below poverty line: 25% (2004 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3.2% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 18.4% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $2.05 billion expenditures: $2.46 billion, including capital expenditures of $500 million (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: wheat, corn, potatoes, vegetables, fruits, sugar beets, grapes; meat, dairy products

Industries: food processing, textiles and clothing; lumber, oil, cement, chemicals, mining, basic metals, hydropower

Industrial production growth rate: 3.1% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 5.68 billion kWh (2004)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 2.9% hydro: 97.1% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 6.76 billion kWh (2004)

Electricity - exports: 100 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 1.08 billion kWh (2004 est.)

Oil - production: 2,000 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 7,500 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - exports: 0 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - imports: 5,500 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - proved reserves: 185.5 million bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - production: 30 million cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 30 million cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 3.316 billion cu m (1 January 2002)

Current account balance: $-504 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $552.4 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: textiles and footwear; asphalt, metals and metallic ores, crude oil; vegetables, fruits, tobacco

Exports - partners: Italy 71.7%, Canada 4.3%, Germany 4.3% (2004)

Imports: $2.076 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment, foodstuffs, textiles, chemicals

Imports - partners: Italy 34.8%, Greece 19.8%, Turkey 7.7%, Germany 5.3% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $1.206 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $1.41 billion (2003)

Economic aid - recipient: ODA: $315 million (top donors were Italy, EU, Germany) (2000 est.)

Currency (code): lek (ALL)

Currency code: ALL

Exchange rates: leke per US dollar - 102.649 (2004), 121.863 (2003), 140.155 (2002), 143.485 (2001), 143.709 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Albania

Telephones - main lines in use: 255,000 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 1.1 million (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: despite new investment in fixed lines, the density of main lines remains the lowest in Europe with roughly 8 lines per 100 people; however, cellular telephone use is widespread and generally effective domestic: offsetting the shortage of fixed line capacity, mobile phone service has been available since 1996; by 2003 two companies were providing mobile services at a greater density than some of Albania's Balkan neighbors international: country code - 355; inadequate fixed main lines; adequate cellular connections; international traffic carried by microwave radio relay from the Tirana exchange to Italy and Greece (2003)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 13, FM 4, shortwave 2 (2001)

Radios: 1 million (2001)

Television broadcast stations: 3 (plus 58 repeaters) (2001)

Televisions: 700,000 (2001)

Internet country code: .al

Internet hosts: 455 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 10 (2001)

Internet users: 30,000 (2003)

Transportation Albania

Railways: total: 447 km standard gauge: 447 km 1.435-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 18,000 km paved: 5,400 km unpaved: 12,600 km (2002)

Waterways: 43 km (2004)

Pipelines: gas 339 km; oil 207 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Durres, Sarande, Shengjin, Vlore

Merchant marine: total: 25 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 40,878 GRT/62,676 DWT by type: cargo 24, roll on/roll off 1 foreign-owned: 2 (Denmark 1, Turkey 1) registered in other countries: 1 (2005)

Airports: 11 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 3 2,438 to 3,047 m: 3 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 8 over 3,047 m: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 2 under 914 m: 4 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Albania

Military branches: General Staff Headquarters, Land Forces Command (Army), Naval Forces Command, Air Defense Command, Logistics Command, Training and Doctrine Command

Military service age and obligation: 19 years of age (2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 19-49: 809,524 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 19-49: 668,526 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 37,407 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $56.5 million (FY02)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.49% (FY02)

Transnational Issues Albania

Disputes - international: the Albanian Government calls for the protection of the rights of ethnic Albanians in neighboring countries, and the peaceful resolution of interethnic disputes; some ethnic Albanian groups in neighboring countries advocate for a "greater Albania," but the idea has little appeal among Albanian nationals; thousands of unemployed Albanians emigrate annually to nearby Italy and other developed countries

Illicit drugs: increasingly active transshipment point for Southwest Asian opiates, hashish, and cannabis transiting the Balkan route and - to a far lesser extent - cocaine from South America destined for Western Europe; limited opium and growing cannabis production; ethnic Albanian narcotrafficking organizations active and expanding in Europe; vulnerable to money laundering associated with regional trafficking in narcotics, arms, contraband, and illegal aliens

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Algeria

Introduction Algeria

Background: After more than a century of rule by France, Algerians fought through much of the 1950s to achieve independence in 1962. Algeria's primary political party, the National Liberation Front (FLN), has dominated politics ever since. Many Algerians in the subsequent generation were not satisfied, however, and moved to counter the FLN's centrality in Algerian politics. The surprising first round success of the Islamic Salvation Front (FIS) in the December 1991 balloting spurred the Algerian army to intervene and postpone the second round of elections to prevent what the secular elite feared would be an extremist-led government from assuming power. The army began a crack down on the FIS that spurred FIS supporters to begin attacking government targets. The government later allowed elections featuring pro-government and moderate religious-based parties, but did not appease the activists who progressively widened their attacks. The fighting escalated into an insurgency, which saw intense fighting between 1992-98 and which resulted in over 100,000 deaths - many attributed to indiscriminate massacres of villagers by extremists. The government gained the upper hand by the late-1990s and FIS's armed wing, the Islamic Salvation Army, disbanded in January 2000. However, small numbers of armed militants persist in confronting government forces and conducting ambushes and occasional attacks on villages. The army placed Abdelaziz BOUTEFLIKA in the presidency in 1999 in a fraudulent election but claimed neutrality in his 2004 landslide reelection victory. Longstanding problems continue to face BOUTEFLIKA in his second term, including the ethnic minority Berbers' ongoing autonomy campaign, large-scale unemployment, a shortage of housing, unreliable electrical and water supplies, government inefficiencies and corruption, and the continuing - although significantly degraded - activities of extremist militants. Algeria must also diversify its petroleum-based economy, which has yielded a large cash reserve but which has not been used to redress Algeria's many social and infrastructure problems. Algeria assumed a two-year seat on the UN Security Council in January 2004.

Geography Algeria

Location: Northern Africa, bordering the Mediterranean Sea, between Morocco and Tunisia

Geographic coordinates: 28 00 N, 3 00 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 2,381,740 sq km land: 2,381,740 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly less than 3.5 times the size of Texas

Land boundaries: total: 6,343 km border countries: Libya 982 km, Mali 1,376 km, Mauritania 463 km, Morocco 1,559 km, Niger 956 km, Tunisia 965 km, Western Sahara 42 km

Coastline: 998 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive fishing zone: 32-52 nm

Climate: arid to semiarid; mild, wet winters with hot, dry summers along coast; drier with cold winters and hot summers on high plateau; sirocco is a hot, dust/sand-laden wind especially common in summer

Terrain: mostly high plateau and desert; some mountains; narrow, discontinuous coastal plain

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Chott Melrhir -40 m highest point: Tahat 3,003 m

Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas, iron ore, phosphates, uranium, lead, zinc

Land use: arable land: 3.22% permanent crops: 0.25% other: 96.53% (2001)

Irrigated land: 5,600 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: mountainous areas subject to severe earthquakes; mudslides and floods in rainy season

Environment - current issues: soil erosion from overgrazing and other poor farming practices; desertification; dumping of raw sewage, petroleum refining wastes, and other industrial effluents is leading to the pollution of rivers and coastal waters; Mediterranean Sea, in particular, becoming polluted from oil wastes, soil erosion, and fertilizer runoff; inadequate supplies of potable water

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: second-largest country in Africa (after Sudan)

People Algeria

Population: 32,531,853 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 29% (male 4,811,086/female 4,626,271) 15-64 years: 66.3% (male 10,861,862/female 10,701,459) 65 years and over: 4.7% (male 719,460/female 811,715) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 24.36 years male: 24.18 years female: 24.53 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.22% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 17.13 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 4.6 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.37 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.89 male(s)/female total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 31 deaths/1,000 live births male: 34.83 deaths/1,000 live births female: 26.98 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 73 years male: 71.45 years female: 74.63 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.92 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.1% ; note - no country specific models provided (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 9,100 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 500 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: intermediate food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne disease: cutaneous leishmaniasis is a high risk in some locations (2004)

Nationality: noun: Algerian(s) adjective: Algerian

Ethnic groups: Arab-Berber 99%, European less than 1% note: almost all Algerians are Berber in origin, not Arab; the minority who identify themselves as Berber live mostly in the mountainous region of Kabylie east of Algiers; the Berbers are also Muslim but identify with their Berber rather than Arab cultural heritage; Berbers have long agitated, sometimes violently, for autonomy; the government is unlikely to grant autonomy but has offered to begin sponsoring teaching Berber language in schools

Religions: Sunni Muslim (state religion) 99%, Christian and Jewish 1%

Languages: Arabic (official), French, Berber dialects

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 70% male: 78.8% female: 61% (2003 est.)

Government Algeria

Country name: conventional long form: People's Democratic Republic of Algeria conventional short form: Algeria local long form: Al Jumhuriyah al Jaza'iriyah ad Dimuqratiyah ash Sha'biyah local short form: Al Jaza'ir

Government type: republic

Capital: Algiers

Administrative divisions: 48 provinces (wilayas, singular - wilaya); Adrar, Ain Defla, Ain Temouchent, Alger, Annaba, Batna, Bechar, Bejaia, Biskra, Blida, Bordj Bou Arreridj, Bouira, Boumerdes, Chlef, Constantine, Djelfa, El Bayadh, El Oued, El Tarf, Ghardaia, Guelma, Illizi, Jijel, Khenchela, Laghouat, Mascara, Medea, Mila, Mostaganem, M'Sila, Naama, Oran, Ouargla, Oum el Bouaghi, Relizane, Saida, Setif, Sidi Bel Abbes, Skikda, Souk Ahras, Tamanghasset, Tebessa, Tiaret, Tindouf, Tipaza, Tissemsilt, Tizi Ouzou, Tlemcen

Independence: 5 July 1962 (from France)

National holiday: Revolution Day, 1 November (1954)

Constitution: 19 November 1976, effective 22 November 1976; revised 3 November 1988, 23 February 1989, and 28 November 1996

Legal system: socialist, based on French and Islamic law; judicial review of legislative acts in ad hoc Constitutional Council composed of various public officials, including several Supreme Court justices; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Abdelaziz BOUTEFLIKA (since 28 April 1999) head of government: Prime Minister Ahmed OUYAHIA (since 9 May 2003) cabinet: Cabinet of Ministers appointed by the president elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; election last held 8 April 2004 (next to be held NA April 2009); prime minister appointed by the president election results: Abdelaziz BOUTEFLIKA reelected president for second term; percent of vote - Abdelaziz BOUTEFLIKA 85%, Ali BENFLIS 6.4%, Abdellah DJABALLAH 5%

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consists of the National People's Assembly or Al-Majlis Ech-Chaabi Al-Watani (389 seats - changed from 380 seats in the 2002 elections; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) and the Council of Nations (Senate) (144 seats; one-third of the members appointed by the president, two-thirds elected by indirect vote; members serve six-year terms; the constitution requires half the council to be renewed every three years) elections: National People's Assembly - last held 30 May 2002 (next to be held NA 2007); Council of Nations (Senate) - last held 30 December 2003 (next to be held NA 2006) election results: National People's Assembly - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - FLN 199, RND 48, Islah 43, MSP 38, PT 21, FNA 8, EnNahda 1, PRA 1, MEN 1, independents 29; Council of Nations - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party NA%

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Court Supreme

Political parties and leaders: Algerian National Front or FNA [Moussa TOUATI]; Democratic National Rally or RND [Ahmed OUYAHIA, chairman]; Islamic Salvation Front or FIS (outlawed April 1992) [Ali BELHADJ and Dr. Abassi MADANI, Rabeh KEBIR (self-exiled in Germany)]; National Entente Movement or MEN [Ali BOUKHAZNA]; National Liberation Front or FLN [Abdelaziz BELKHADEM, secretary general (also serves as Foreign Minister)]; National Reform Movement or Islah (formerly MRN) [Abdellah DJABALLAH]; National Renewal Party or PRA [Yacine TERKMANE]; Progressive Republican Party [Khadir DRISS]; Rally for Culture and Democracy or RCD [Said SAADI, secretary general]; Renaissance Movement or EnNahda Movement [Fatah RABEI]; Socialist Forces Front or FFS [Hocine Ait AHMED, secretary general (self-exiled in Switzerland)]; Social Liberal Party or PSL [Ahmed KHELIL]; Society of Peace Movement or MSP [Boujerra SOLTANI]; Workers Party or PT [Louisa HANOUN] note: a law banning political parties based on religion was enacted in March 1997

Political pressure groups and leaders: The Algerian Human Rights League or LADH or LADDH [Yahia Ali ABDENOUR]; SOS Disparus [Nacera DUTOUR]; Somoud [Ali MERABET]

International organization participation: ABEDA, AfDB, AFESD, AMF, AMU, AU, BIS, FAO, G-15, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, LAS, MIGA, MONUC, NAM, OAPEC, OAS (observer), OIC, OPCW, OPEC, OSCE (partner), UN, UN Security Council (temporary), UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMEE, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO (observer)

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Amine KHERBI chancery: 2137 Wyoming Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 265-2800 FAX: [1] (202) 667-2174

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Richard W. ERDMAN embassy: 4 Chemin Cheikh Bachir El-Ibrahimi, Algiers mailing address: B. P. 408, Alger-Gare, 16030 Algiers telephone: [213] (21) 691-425/255/186 FAX: [213] (21) 69-39-79

Flag description: two equal vertical bands of green (hoist side) and white; a red, five-pointed star within a red crescent centered over the two-color boundary; the crescent, star, and color green are traditional symbols of Islam (the state religion)

Economy Algeria

Economy - overview: The hydrocarbons sector is the backbone of the economy, accounting for roughly 60% of budget revenues, 30% of GDP, and over 95% of export earnings. Algeria has the seventh-largest reserves of natural gas in the world and is the second-largest gas exporter; it ranks 14th in oil reserves. Sustained high oil prices in recent years, along with macroeconomic policy reforms supported by the IMF, have helped improve Algeria's financial and macroeconomic indicators. Algeria is running substantial trade surpluses and building up record foreign exchange reserves. Real GDP has risen due to higher oil output and increased government spending. The government's continued efforts to diversify the economy by attracting foreign and domestic investment outside the energy sector, however, has had little success in reducing high unemployment and improving living standards. Structural reform within the economy moves ahead slowly.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $212.3 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 6.1% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $6,600 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 10.3% industry: 57.4% services: 32.3% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 9.91 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 14%, industry 13.4%, construction and public works 10%, trade 14.6%, government 32%, other 16% (2003 est.)

Unemployment rate: 25.4% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 23% (1999 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2.8% highest 10%: 26.8% (1995)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 35.3 (1995)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3.1% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 26.2% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $31.47 billion expenditures: $29.3 billion, including capital expenditures of $5.8 billion (2004 est.)

Public debt: 37.4% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: wheat, barley, oats, grapes, olives, citrus, fruits; sheep, cattle

Industries: petroleum, natural gas, light industries, mining, electrical, petrochemical, food processing

Industrial production growth rate: 6% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 25.76 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 99.7% hydro: 0.3% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 23.61 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 500 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 150 million kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 1.2 million bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 209,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 11.87 billion bbl (2004 est.)

Natural gas - production: 80.3 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 22.32 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 57.98 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 4.739 trillion cu m (2004)

Current account balance: $11.9 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $32.16 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: petroleum, natural gas, and petroleum products 97%

Exports - partners: US 22.6%, Italy 17.2%, France 11.4%, Spain 10.1%, Canada 7.5%, Brazil 6.1%, Belgium 4.6% (2004)

Imports: $15.25 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: capital goods, foodstuffs, consumer goods

Imports - partners: France 30.3%, Italy 8.2%, Germany 6.5%, Spain 5.5%, US 5.2%, China 5.1%, Turkey 4.3% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $43.55 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $21.9 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $122.8 million (2002 est.)

Currency (code): Algerian dinar (DZD)

Currency code: DZD

Exchange rates: Algerian dinars per US dollar - 72.061 (2004), 77.395 (2003), 79.682 (2002), 77.215 (2001), 75.26 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Algeria

Telephones - main lines in use: 2,199,600 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 1,447,310 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: telephone density in Algeria is very low, not exceeding five telephones per 100 persons; the number of fixed main lines increased in the last few years to a little more than 2,000,000, but only about two-thirds of these have subscribers; much of the infrastructure is outdated and inefficient domestic: good service in north but sparse in south; domestic satellite system with 12 earth stations (20 additional domestic earth stations are planned) international: country code - 213; 5 submarine cables; microwave radio relay to Italy, France, Spain, Morocco, and Tunisia; coaxial cable to Morocco and Tunisia; participant in Medarabtel; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean), 1 Intersputnik, and 1 Arabsat (1998)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 25, FM 1, shortwave 8 (1999)

Radios: 7.1 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 46 (plus 216 repeaters) (1995)

Televisions: 3.1 million (1997)

Internet country code: .dz

Internet hosts: 897 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 2 (2000)

Internet users: 500,000 (2002)

Transportation Algeria

Railways: total: 3,973 km standard gauge: 2,888 km 1.435-m gauge (283 km electrified) narrow gauge: 1,085 km 1.055-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 104,000 km paved: 71,656 km (including 640 km of expressways) unpaved: 32,344 km (1999)

Pipelines: condensate 1,344 km; gas 85,946 km; liquid petroleum gas 2,213 km; oil 6,496 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Algiers, Annaba, Arzew, Bejaia, Djendjene, Jijel, Mostaganem, Oran, Skikda

Merchant marine: total: 56 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 837,676 GRT/929,847 DWT by type: bulk carrier 9, cargo 14, chemical tanker 4, liquefied gas 10, passenger/cargo 4, petroleum tanker 6, roll on/roll off 9 foreign-owned: 3 (United Kingdom 3) registered in other countries: 1 (2005)

Airports: 137 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 52 over 3,047 m: 10 2,438 to 3,047 m: 27 1,524 to 2,437 m: 10 914 to 1,523 m: 4 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 85 2,438 to 3,047 m: 2 1,524 to 2,437 m: 26 914 to 1,523 m: 38 under 914 m: 19 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Algeria

Military branches: People's National Army (ANP; includes Land Forces), Algerian National Navy (MRA), Air Force (QJJ), Territorial Air Defense Force (2005)

Military service age and obligation: 19-30 years of age for compulsory military service; conscript service obligation - 18 months (October 2003)

Manpower available for military service: males age 19-49: 8,033,049 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 19-49: 6,590,079 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 374,639 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $2.48 billion (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 3.2% (2004)

Transnational Issues Algeria

Disputes - international: Algeria supports the exiled Sahrawi Polisario Front and rejects Moroccan administration of Western Sahara; Algeria's border with Morocco remains an irritant to bilateral relations, each nation has accused the other of harboring militants and arms smuggling; in an attempt to improve relations after unilaterally imposing a visa requirement on Algerians in the early 1990s, Morocco lifted the requirement in mid-2004 - a gesture not reciprocated by Algeria; Algeria remains concerned about armed bandits operating throughout the Sahel who sometimes destabilize southern Algerian towns; dormant disputes include Libyan claims of about 32,000 sq km still reflected on its maps of southeastern Algeria and the FLN's assertions of a claim to Chirac Pastures in southeastern Morocco

Refugees and internally displaced persons: refugees (country of origin): 165,000 (Western Saharan Sahrawi, mostly living in Algerian-sponsored camps in the southwestern Algerian town of Tindouf) IDPs: 100,000 - 200,000 (conflict between government forces, Islamic insurgents) (2004)

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@American Samoa

Introduction American Samoa

Background: Settled as early as 1000 B.C., Samoa was "discovered" by European explorers in the 18th century. International rivalries in the latter half of the 19th century were settled by an 1899 treaty in which Germany and the US divided the Samoan archipelago. The US formally occupied its portion - a smaller group of eastern islands with the excellent harbor of Pago Pago - the following year.

Geography American Samoa

Location: Oceania, group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean, about half way between Hawaii and New Zealand

Geographic coordinates: 14 20 S, 170 00 W

Map references: Oceania

Area: total: 199 sq km land: 199 sq km water: 0 sq km note: includes Rose Island and Swains Island

Area - comparative: slightly larger than Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 116 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical marine, moderated by southeast trade winds; annual rainfall averages about 3 m; rainy season from November to April, dry season from May to October; little seasonal temperature variation

Terrain: five volcanic islands with rugged peaks and limited coastal plains, two coral atolls (Rose Island, Swains Island)

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m highest point: Lata 966 m

Natural resources: pumice, pumicite

Land use: arable land: 10% permanent crops: 15% other: 75% (2001)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: typhoons common from December to March

Environment - current issues: limited natural fresh water resources; the water division of the government has spent substantial funds in the past few years to improve water catchments and pipelines

Geography - note: Pago Pago has one of the best natural deepwater harbors in the South Pacific Ocean, sheltered by shape from rough seas and protected by peripheral mountains from high winds; strategic location in the South Pacific Ocean

People American Samoa

Population: 57,881 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 35.7% (male 10,705/female 9,956) 15-64 years: 61.3% (male 18,351/female 17,125) 65 years and over: 3% (male 664/female 1,080) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 22.76 years male: 22.5 years female: 23.05 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: -0.11% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 23.13 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 3.33 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -20.89 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.08 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.07 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.62 male(s)/female total population: 1.06 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 9.27 deaths/1,000 live births male: 9.85 deaths/1,000 live births female: 8.65 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 75.84 years male: 72.27 years female: 79.62 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3.25 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: American Samoan(s) adjective: American Samoan

Ethnic groups: native Pacific islander 92.9%, Asian 2.9%, white 1.2%, mixed 2.8%, other 0.2% (2000 census)

Religions: Christian Congregationalist 50%, Roman Catholic 20%, Protestant and other 30%

Languages: Samoan 90.6% (closely related to Hawaiian and other Polynesian languages), English 2.9%, Tongan 2.4%, other Pacific islander 2.1%, other 2% note: most people are bilingual (2000 census)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 97% male: 98% female: 97% (1980 est.)

Government American Samoa

Country name: conventional long form: Territory of American Samoa conventional short form: American Samoa abbreviation: AS

Dependency status: unincorporated and unorganized territory of the US; administered by the Office of Insular Affairs, US Department of the Interior

Government type: NA

Capital: Pago Pago

Administrative divisions: none (territory of the US); there are no first-order administrative divisions as defined by the US Government, but there are three districts and two islands* at the second order; Eastern, Manu'a, Rose Island*, Swains Island*, Western

Independence: none (territory of the US)

National holiday: Flag Day, 17 April (1900)

Constitution: ratified 2 June 1966, effective 1 July 1967

Legal system: NA

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President George W. BUSH of the US (since 20 January 2001) and Vice President Richard B. CHENEY (since 20 January 2001) head of government: Governor Togiola TULAFONO (since 7 April 2003) cabinet: cabinet made up of 12 department directors elections: US president and vice president elected on the same ticket for four-year terms; governor and lieutenant governor elected on the same ticket by popular vote for four-year terms; election last held 2 and 16 November 2004 (next to be held November 2008) election results: Togiola TULAFONO elected governor; percent of vote - Togiola TULAFONO 55.7%, Afoa Moega LUTU 44.3%

Legislative branch: bicameral Fono or Legislative Assembly consists of the House of Representatives (21 seats - 20 of which are elected by popular vote and 1 is an appointed, nonvoting delegate from Swains Island; members serve two-year terms) and the Senate (18 seats; members are elected from local chiefs and serve four-year terms) elections: House of Representatives - last held 2 November 2004 (next to be held November 2006); Senate - last held 2 November 2004 (next to be held November 2008) election results: House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - NA; Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - independents 18 note: American Samoa elects one nonvoting representative to the US House of Representatives; election last held 2 November 2004 (next to be held November 2006); results - Eni F. H. FALEOMAVAEGA (Democrat) reelected as delegate

Judicial branch: High Court (chief justice and associate justices are appointed by the US Secretary of the Interior)

Political parties and leaders: Democratic Party [Oreta M. TOGAFAU]; Republican Party [Tautai A. F. FAALEVAO]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: Interpol (subbureau), IOC, UPU

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (territory of the US)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (territory of the US)

Flag description: blue, with a white triangle edged in red that is based on the outer side and extends to the hoist side; a brown and white American bald eagle flying toward the hoist side is carrying two traditional Samoan symbols of authority, a staff and a war club

Economy American Samoa

Economy - overview: This is a traditional Polynesian economy in which more than 90% of the land is communally owned. Economic activity is strongly linked to the US, with which American Samoa conducts most of its foreign trade. Tuna fishing and tuna processing plants are the backbone of the private sector, with canned tuna the primary export. Transfers from the US Government add substantially to American Samoa's economic well-being. Attempts by the government to develop a larger and broader economy are restrained by Samoa's remote location, its limited transportation, and its devastating hurricanes. Tourism is a promising developing sector.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $500 million (2000 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: NA

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $8,000 (2000 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: NA% industry: NA% services: NA%

Labor force: 14,000 (1996)

Labor force - by occupation: tuna canneries 34%, government 33%, other 33% (1990)

Unemployment rate: 6% (2000)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA% highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices): NA%

Budget: revenues: $121 million (37% in local revenue and 63% in US grants) expenditures: $127 million, including capital expenditures of NA (FY96/97)

Agriculture - products: bananas, coconuts, vegetables, taro, breadfruit, yams, copra, pineapples, papayas; dairy products, livestock

Industries: tuna canneries (largely supplied by foreign fishing vessels), handicrafts

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - production: 130 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 120.9 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 3,800 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Exports: $30 million (2002)

Exports - commodities: canned tuna 93%

Exports - partners: Samoa 39.8%, Australia 19.9%, Japan 15.1%, New Zealand 10.5% (2004)

Imports: $123 million (2002)

Imports - commodities: materials for canneries 56%, food 8%, petroleum products 7%, machinery and parts 6%

Imports - partners: Japan 31.4%, New Zealand 27.9%, Germany 17.1%, Australia 8.9% (2004)

Debt - external: $NA

Economic aid - recipient: important financial support from the US, more than $40 million in 1994

Currency (code): US dollar (USD)

Currency code: USD

Exchange rates: the US dollar is used

Fiscal year: 1 October - 30 September

Communications American Samoa

Telephones - main lines in use: 15,000 (2001)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 2,377 (1999)

Telephone system: general assessment: NA domestic: good telex, telegraph, facsimile and cellular telephone services; domestic satellite system with 1 Comsat earth station international: country code - 1-684; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 3, FM 4, shortwave 1 (2004)

Radios: 57,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1; note - one cable TV station (2004)

Televisions: 14,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .as

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)

Internet users: NA

Transportation American Samoa

Highways: total: 185 km paved: 185 km unpaved: 0 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Pago Pago

Airports: 3 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military American Samoa

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of the US

Transnational Issues American Samoa

Disputes - international: none

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Andorra

Introduction Andorra

Background: For 715 years, from 1278 to 1993, Andorrans lived under a unique co-principality, ruled by French and Spanish leaders (from 1607 onward, the French chief of state and the Spanish bishop of Urgel). In 1993, this feudal system was modified with the titular heads of state retained, but the government transformed into a parliamentary democracy. Long isolated and impoverished, mountainous Andorra achieved considerable prosperity since World War II through its tourist industry. Many immigrants (legal and illegal) are attracted to the thriving economy with its lack of income taxes.

Geography Andorra

Location: Southwestern Europe, between France and Spain

Geographic coordinates: 42 30 N, 1 30 E

Map references: Europe

Area: total: 468 sq km land: 468 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: 2.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: total: 120.3 km border countries: France 56.6 km, Spain 63.7 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: temperate; snowy, cold winters and warm, dry summers

Terrain: rugged mountains dissected by narrow valleys

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Riu Runer 840 m highest point: Coma Pedrosa 2,946 m

Natural resources: hydropower, mineral water, timber, iron ore, lead

Land use: arable land: 2.22% permanent crops: 0% other: 97.78% (2001)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: avalanches

Environment - current issues: deforestation; overgrazing of mountain meadows contributes to soil erosion; air pollution; wastewater treatment and solid waste disposal

Environment - international agreements: party to: Hazardous Wastes signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: landlocked; straddles a number of important crossroads in the Pyrenees

People Andorra

Population: 70,549 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 14.8% (male 5,471/female 4,995) 15-64 years: 71.5% (male 26,463/female 23,977) 65 years and over: 13.7% (male 4,780/female 4,863) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 40.34 years male: 40.63 years female: 40.02 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.95% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 9 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 6.07 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 6.53 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.1 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.1 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.98 male(s)/female total population: 1.08 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 4.05 deaths/1,000 live births male: 4.38 deaths/1,000 live births female: 3.69 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 83.51 years male: 80.6 years female: 86.6 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.29 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA%

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Andorran(s) adjective: Andorran

Ethnic groups: Spanish 43%, Andorran 33%, Portuguese 11%, French 7%, other 6% (1998)

Religions: Roman Catholic (predominant)

Languages: Catalan (official), French, Castilian, Portuguese

Literacy: definition: NA total population: 100% male: NA% female: NA%

Government Andorra

Country name: conventional long form: Principality of Andorra conventional short form: Andorra local long form: Principat d'Andorra local short form: Andorra

Government type: parliamentary democracy (since March 1993) that retains as its chiefs of state a coprincipality; the two princes are the president of France and bishop of Seo de Urgel, Spain, who are represented locally by coprinces' representatives

Capital: Andorra la Vella

Administrative divisions: 7 parishes (parroquies, singular - parroquia); Andorra la Vella, Canillo, Encamp, La Massana, Escaldes-Engordany, Ordino, Sant Julia de Loria

Independence: 1278 (was formed under the joint suzerainty of the French count of Foix and the Spanish bishop of Urgel)

National holiday: Our Lady of Meritxell Day, 8 September (1278)

Constitution: Andorra's first written constitution was drafted in 1991, approved by referendum 14 March 1993, effective 4 May 1993

Legal system: based on French and Spanish civil codes; no judicial review of legislative acts; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: French Coprince Jacques CHIRAC (since 17 May 1995), represented by Philippe MASSONI (since 26 July 2002); Spanish Coprince Bishop Joan Enric VIVES i SICILIA (since 12 May 2003), represented by Nemesi MARQUES i OSTE (since NA) head of government: Executive Council President Albert PINTAT SANTOLARIA (since 27 May 2005) cabinet: Executive Council or Govern designated by the Executive Council president elections: Executive Council president elected by the General Council and formally appointed by the coprinces for a four-year term; election last held 4 March 2001 (next to be held April-May 2005) election results: Marc FORNE MOLNE elected executive council president; percent of General Council vote - NA%

Legislative branch: unicameral General Council of the Valleys or Consell General de las Valls (28 seats; members are elected by direct popular vote, 14 from a single national constituency and 14 to represent each of the 7 parishes; members serve four-year terms) elections: last held 24 April 2005 (next to be held March-April 2009) election results: percent of vote by party - PLA 41.2%, PS 38.1%, CDA 11%, other 9.7%; seats by party - PLA 14, PS 12, CDA 2

Judicial branch: Tribunal of Judges or Tribunal de Batlles; Tribunal of the Courts or Tribunal de Corts; Supreme Court of Justice of Andorra or Tribunal Superior de Justicia d'Andorra; Supreme Council of Justice or Consell Superior de la Justicia; Fiscal Ministry or Ministeri Fiscal; Constitutional Tribunal or Tribunal Constitucional

Political parties and leaders: Andorran Democratic Center Party or CDA (formerly Democratic Party or PD) [leader NA]; Liberal Party of Andorra or PLA (formerly Liberal Union or UL) [Albert PINTAT]; Social Democratic Party or PS (formerly part of National Democratic Group or AND) [Mariona GONZALEZ REOLIT]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: CE, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM, IFRCS, Interpol, IOC, ITU, OPCW, OSCE, UN, UNESCO, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WToO, WTO (observer)

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Jelena V. PIA-COMELLA chancery: 2 United Nations Plaza, 25th Floor, New York, NY 10017 telephone: [1] (212) 750-8064 FAX: [1] (212) 750-6630

Diplomatic representation from the US: the US does not have an embassy in Andorra; the US Ambassador to Spain is accredited to Andorra; US interests in Andorra are represented by the Consulate General's office in Barcelona (Spain); mailing address: Paseo Reina Elisenda, 23, 08034 Barcelona, Spain; telephone: [34] (93) 280-2227; FAX: [34] (93) 280-6175

Flag description: three equal vertical bands of blue (hoist side), yellow, and red with the national coat of arms centered in the yellow band; the coat of arms features a quartered shield; similar to the flags of Chad and Romania, which do not have a national coat of arms in the center, and the flag of Moldova, which does bear a national emblem

Economy Andorra

Economy - overview: Tourism, the mainstay of Andorra's tiny, well-to-do economy, accounts for roughly 80% of GDP. An estimated 9 million tourists visit annually, attracted by Andorra's duty-free status and by its summer and winter resorts. Andorra's comparative advantage has recently eroded as the economies of neighboring France and Spain have been opened up, providing broader availability of goods and lower tariffs. The banking sector, with its "tax haven" status, also contributes substantially to the economy. Agricultural production is limited - only 2% of the land is arable - and most food has to be imported. The principal livestock activity is sheep raising. Manufacturing output consists mainly of cigarettes, cigars, and furniture. Andorra is a member of the EU Customs Union and is treated as an EU member for trade in manufactured goods (no tariffs) and as a non-EU member for agricultural products.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $1.9 billion (2003 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 2% (2003 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $26,800 (2003 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: NA% industry: NA% services: NA%

Labor force: 33,000 (2001 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 1%, industry 21%, services 78% (2000 est.)

Unemployment rate: 0% (1996 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA%

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA% highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 4.3% (2000)

Budget: revenues: $385 million expenditures: $342 million, including capital expenditures of NA (1997)

Agriculture - products: small quantities of rye, wheat, barley, oats, vegetables; sheep

Industries: tourism (particularly skiing), cattle raising, timber, banking

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - production: NA kWh

Electricity - production by source: NA

Electricity - consumption: NA kWh

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: NA kWh; note - most electricity supplied by Spain and France; Andorra generates a small amount of hydropower

Exports: $58 million f.o.b. (1998)

Exports - commodities: tobacco products, furniture

Exports - partners: Spain 58%, France 34% (2000)

Imports: $1.077 billion (1998)

Imports - commodities: consumer goods, food, electricity

Imports - partners: Spain 48%, France 35%, US 2.3% (2000)

Debt - external: $NA

Economic aid - recipient: none

Currency (code): euro (EUR)

Currency code: EUR

Exchange rates: euros per US dollar - 0.8054 (2004), 0.886 (2003), 1.0626 (2002), 1.1175 (2001), 1.0854 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Andorra

Telephones - main lines in use: 35,000 (2001)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 23,500 (2001)

Telephone system: general assessment: NA domestic: modern system with microwave radio relay connections between exchanges international: country code - 376; landline circuits to France and Spain

Radio broadcast stations: AM 0, FM 15, shortwave 0 (1998)

Radios: 16,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 0 (1997)

Televisions: 27,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .ad

Internet hosts: 4,144 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)

Internet users: 24,500 (2001)

Transportation Andorra

Highways: total: 269 km paved: 198 km unpaved: 71 km

Merchant marine: registered in other countries: 1

Airports: none (2004 est.)

Military Andorra

Military branches: no regular military forces, Police Service of Andorra

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of France and Spain

Transnational Issues Andorra

Disputes - international: none

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Angola

Introduction Angola

Background: Angola has begun to enjoy the fruits of peace since the end of a 27-year civil war in 2002. Fighting between the Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA), led by Jose Eduardo DOS SANTOS, and the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA), led by Jonas SAVIMBI, followed independence from Portugal in 1975. Peace seemed imminent in 1992 when Angola held national elections, but UNITA renewed fighting after being beaten by the MPLA at the polls. Up to 1.5 million lives may have been lost - and 4 million people displaced - in the quarter century of fighting. SAVIMBI's death in 2002 ended UNITA's insurgency and strengthened the MPLA's hold on power. DOS SANTOS has pledged to hold national elections in 2006.

Geography Angola

Location: Southern Africa, bordering the South Atlantic Ocean, between Namibia and Democratic Republic of the Congo

Geographic coordinates: 12 30 S, 18 30 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 1,246,700 sq km land: 1,246,700 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly less than twice the size of Texas

Land boundaries: total: 5,198 km border countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo 2,511 km (of which 225 km is the boundary of discontiguous Cabinda Province), Republic of the Congo 201 km, Namibia 1,376 km, Zambia 1,110 km

Coastline: 1,600 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate: semiarid in south and along coast to Luanda; north has cool, dry season (May to October) and hot, rainy season (November to April)

Terrain: narrow coastal plain rises abruptly to vast interior plateau

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Morro de Moco 2,620 m

Natural resources: petroleum, diamonds, iron ore, phosphates, copper, feldspar, gold, bauxite, uranium

Land use: arable land: 2.41% permanent crops: 0.24% other: 97.35% (2001)

Irrigated land: 750 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: locally heavy rainfall causes periodic flooding on the plateau

Environment - current issues: overuse of pastures and subsequent soil erosion attributable to population pressures; desertification; deforestation of tropical rain forest, in response to both international demand for tropical timber and to domestic use as fuel, resulting in loss of biodiversity; soil erosion contributing to water pollution and siltation of rivers and dams; inadequate supplies of potable water

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: the province of Cabinda is an exclave, separated from the rest of the country by the Democratic Republic of the Congo

People Angola

Population: 11,190,786 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 43.4% (male 2,454,209/female 2,407,083) 15-64 years: 53.7% (male 3,059,339/female 2,955,060) 65 years and over: 2.8% (male 139,961/female 175,134) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 18.12 years male: 18.12 years female: 18.11 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.9% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 44.64 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 25.9 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0.28 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.8 male(s)/female total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 191.19 deaths/1,000 live births male: 203.68 deaths/1,000 live births female: 178.07 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 38.43 years male: 37.28 years female: 39.64 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 6.27 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 3.9% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 240,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 21,000 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: very high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, typhoid fever vectorborne diseases: malaria, African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness) are high risks in some locations respiratory disease: meningococcal meningitis water contact disease: schistosomiasis (2004)

Nationality: noun: Angolan(s) adjective: Angolan

Ethnic groups: Ovimbundu 37%, Kimbundu 25%, Bakongo 13%, mestico (mixed European and native African) 2%, European 1%, other 22%

Religions: indigenous beliefs 47%, Roman Catholic 38%, Protestant 15% (1998 est.)

Languages: Portuguese (official), Bantu and other African languages

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 66.8% male: 82.1% female: 53.8% (2001 est.)

Government Angola

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Angola conventional short form: Angola local long form: Republica de Angola local short form: Angola former: People's Republic of Angola

Government type: republic, nominally a multiparty democracy with a strong presidential system

Capital: Luanda

Administrative divisions: 18 provinces (provincias, singular - provincia); Bengo, Benguela, Bie, Cabinda, Cuando Cubango, Cuanza Norte, Cuanza Sul, Cunene, Huambo, Huila, Luanda, Lunda Norte, Lunda Sul, Malanje, Moxico, Namibe, Uige, Zaire

Independence: 11 November 1975 (from Portugal)

National holiday: Independence Day, 11 November (1975)

Constitution: 11 November 1975; revised 7 January 1978, 11 August 1980, 6 March 1991, and 26 August 1992; note - new constitution has not yet been approved

Legal system: based on Portuguese civil law system and customary law; recently modified to accommodate political pluralism and increased use of free markets

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Jose Eduardo DOS SANTOS (since 21 September 1979); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government head of government: President Jose Eduardo DOS SANTOS (since 21 September 1979); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government; Fernando de Piedade Dias DOS SANTOS was appointed Prime Minister on 6 December 2002, but this is not a position of real power cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president elections: president elected by universal ballot for a five-year term; President DOS SANTOS originally elected (in 1979) without opposition under a one-party system and stood for reelection in Angola's first multiparty elections 29-30 September 1992 (next to be held September 2006) election results: DOS SANTOS 49.6%, Jonas SAVIMBI 40.1%, making a run-off election necessary; the run-off was not held and SAVIMBI's National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) repudiated the results of the first election; the civil war resumed

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Assembleia Nacional (220 seats; members elected by proportional vote to serve four-year terms) elections: last held 29-30 September 1992 (next to be held September 2006) election results: percent of vote by party - MPLA 54%, UNITA 34%, others 12%; seats by party - MPLA 129, UNITA 70, PRS 6, FNLA 5, PLD 3, others 7

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Tribunal da Relacao (judges are appointed by the president)

Political parties and leaders: Liberal Democratic Party or PLD [Analia de Victoria PEREIRA]; National Front for the Liberation of Angola or FNLA [disputed leadership: Lucas NGONDA, Holden ROBERTO]; National Union for the Total Independence of Angola or UNITA [Isaias SAMAKUVA], largest opposition party has engaged in years of armed resistance; Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola or MPLA [Jose Eduardo DOS SANTOS], ruling party in power since 1975; Social Renewal Party or PRS [disputed leadership: Eduardo KUANGANA, Antonio MUACHICUNGO] note: about a dozen minor parties participated in the 1992 elections but only won a few seats and have little influence in the National Assembly

Political pressure groups and leaders: Front for the Liberation of the Enclave of Cabinda or FLEC [N'zita Henriques TIAGO, Antonio Bento BEMBE] note: FLEC is waging a small-scale, highly factionalized, armed struggle for the independence of Cabinda Province

International organization participation: ACP, AfDB, AU, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO (correspondent), ITU, MIGA, NAM, OAS (observer), SADC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Josefina Perpetua Pitra DIAKIDI chancery: 2108 16th Street NW, Washington, DC 20009 telephone: [1] (202) 785-1156 FAX: [1] (202) 785-1258 consulate(s) general: Houston and New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Cynthia EFFIRD embassy: number 32 Rua Houari Boumedienne (in the Miramar area of Luanda), Luanda mailing address: international mail: Caixa Postal 6468, Luanda; pouch: American Embassy Luanda, Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-2550 telephone: [244] (2) 445-481, 447-028, 446-224 FAX: [244] (2) 446-924

Flag description: two equal horizontal bands of red (top) and black with a centered yellow emblem consisting of a five-pointed star within half a cogwheel crossed by a machete (in the style of a hammer and sickle)

Economy Angola

Economy - overview: Angola has been an economy in disarray because of a quarter century of nearly continuous warfare. An apparently durable peace was established after the death of rebel leader Jonas SAVIMBI in February 2002, but consequences from the conflict continue including the impact of widespread land mines. Subsistence agriculture provides the main livelihood for 85% of the population. Oil production and the supporting activities are vital to the economy, contributing about 45% to GDP and more than half of exports. Much of the country's food must still be imported. To fully take advantage of its rich natural resources - gold, diamonds, extensive forests, Atlantic fisheries, and large oil deposits - Angola will need to continue reforming government policies and to reduce corruption. While Angola made progress in further lowering inflation, from 325% in 2000 to about 106% in 2002, the government has failed to make sufficient progress on reforms recommended by the IMF such as increasing foreign exchange reserves and promoting greater transparency in government spending. Increased oil production supported 7% GDP growth in 2003 and 12% growth in 2004.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $23.17 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 11.7% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $2,100 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 8% industry: 67% services: 25% (2001 est.)

Labor force: 5.41 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 85%, industry and services 15% (2003 est.)

Unemployment rate: extensive unemployment and underemployment affecting more than half the population (2001 est.)

Population below poverty line: 70% (2003 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 43.8% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 34.5% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $9.013 billion expenditures: $9.562 billion, including capital expenditures of $963 million (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: bananas, sugarcane, coffee, sisal, corn, cotton, manioc (tapioca), tobacco, vegetables, plantains; livestock; forest products; fish

Industries: petroleum; diamonds, iron ore, phosphates, feldspar, bauxite, uranium, and gold; cement; basic metal products; fish processing; food processing; brewing; tobacco products; sugar; textiles, ship repair

Industrial production growth rate: 1% (2000)

Electricity - production: 1.707 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 36.4% hydro: 63.6% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 1.587 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 980,000 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 31,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 22.88 billion bbl (2004 est.)

Natural gas - production: 530 million cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 530 million cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 79.57 billion cu m (2004)

Current account balance: $-37.88 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $12.76 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: crude oil, diamonds, refined petroleum products, gas, coffee, sisal, fish and fish products, timber, cotton

Exports - partners: US 38%, China 35.9%, Taiwan 6.8%, France 6.5% (2004)

Imports: $4.896 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and electrical equipment, vehicles and spare parts; medicines, food, textiles, military goods

Imports - partners: South Korea 28.3%, Portugal 13.1%, US 9.3%, South Africa 7.4%, Brazil 5.6%, Japan 4.8%, France 4.4% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $800 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $10.45 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $383.5 million (1999)

Currency (code): kwanza (AOA)

Currency code: AOA

Exchange rates: kwanza per US dollar - 83.541 (2004), 74.606 (2003), 43.53 (2002), 22.058 (2001), 10.041 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Angola

Telephones - main lines in use: 96,300 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 130,000 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: telephone service limited mostly to government and business use; HF radiotelephone used extensively for military links domestic: limited system of wire, microwave radio relay, and tropospheric scatter international: country code - 244; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); fiber optic submarine cable (SAT-3/WASC) provides connectivity to Europe and Asia

Radio broadcast stations: AM 21, FM 6, shortwave 7 (2000)

Radios: 815,000 (2000)

Television broadcast stations: 6 (2000)

Televisions: 196,000 (2000)

Internet country code: .ao

Internet hosts: 17 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)

Internet users: 41,000 (2002)

Transportation Angola

Railways: total: 2,761 km narrow gauge: 2,638 km 1.067-m gauge; 123 km 0.600-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 51,429 km paved: 5,328 km unpaved: 46,101 km (2001)

Waterways: 1,300 km (2004)

Pipelines: gas 214 km; liquid natural gas 14 km; liquid petroleum gas 30 km; oil 837 km; refined products 56 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Cabinda, Luanda, Soyo

Merchant marine: total: 4 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 26,123 GRT/42,879 DWT by type: cargo 1, passenger/cargo 2, petroleum tanker 1 registered in other countries: 4 (2005)

Airports: 243 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 32 over 3,047 m: 4 2,438 to 3,047 m: 8 1,524 to 2,437 m: 14 914 to 1,523 m: 5 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 211 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 4 1,524 to 2,437 m: 30 914 to 1,523 m: 95 under 914 m: 80 (2004 est.)

Military Angola

Military branches: Army, Navy (Marinha de Guerra, MdG), Air and Air Defense Forces (FANA)

Military service age and obligation: 17 years of age for compulsory military service; conscript service obligation - 2 years plus time for training (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 17-49: 2,423,221 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 17-49: 1,174,548 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 121,254 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $183.58 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 10.6% (2004)

Transnational Issues Angola

Disputes - international: 90,000 Angolan refugees were repatriated by 2004, the remaining refugees in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Zambia are expected to return in 2005; many Cabinda exclave secessionists have sought shelter in neighboring states

Refugees and internally displaced persons: IDPs: 40,000-60,000 (27-year civil war ending in 2002; 4 million IDPs already have returned) (2004)

Illicit drugs: used as a transshipment point for cocaine destined for Western Europe and other African states

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

======================================================================

@Anguilla

Introduction Anguilla

Background: Colonized by English settlers from Saint Kitts in 1650, Anguilla was administered by Great Britain until the early 19th century, when the island - against the wishes of the inhabitants - was incorporated into a single British dependency, along with Saint Kitts and Nevis. Several attempts at separation failed. In 1971, two years after a revolt, Anguilla was finally allowed to secede; this arrangement was formally recognized in 1980, with Anguilla becoming a separate British dependency.

Geography Anguilla

Location: Caribbean, islands between the Caribbean Sea and North Atlantic Ocean, east of Puerto Rico

Geographic coordinates: 18 15 N, 63 10 W

Map references: Central America and the Caribbean

Area: total: 102 sq km land: 102 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: about half the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 61 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 3 nm exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical; moderated by northeast trade winds

Terrain: flat and low-lying island of coral and limestone

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m highest point: Crocus Hill 65 m

Natural resources: salt, fish, lobster

Land use: arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% (mostly rock with sparse scrub oak, few trees, some commercial salt ponds) (2001)

Irrigated land: NA

Natural hazards: frequent hurricanes and other tropical storms (July to October)

Environment - current issues: supplies of potable water sometimes cannot meet increasing demand largely because of poor distribution system

Geography - note: the most northerly of the Leeward Islands in the Lesser Antilles

People Anguilla

Population: 13,254 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 23.2% (male 1,561/female 1,517) 15-64 years: 69.9% (male 4,767/female 4,501) 65 years and over: 6.9% (male 405/female 503) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 30.76 years male: 30.81 years female: 30.7 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.77% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 14.26 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 5.43 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 8.83 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.03 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.06 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.8 male(s)/female total population: 1.03 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 21.03 deaths/1,000 live births male: 27.59 deaths/1,000 live births female: 14.27 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 77.11 years male: 74.18 years female: 80.12 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.73 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Anguillan(s) adjective: Anguillan

Ethnic groups: black (predominant) 90.1%, mixed, mulatto 4.6%, white 3.7%, other 1.6% (2001 Census)

Religions: Anglican 29%, Methodist 23.9%, other Protestant 30.2%, Roman Catholic 5.7%, other Christian 1.7%, other 5.2%, none or unspecified 4.3% (2001 Census)

Languages: English (official)

Literacy: definition: age 12 and over can read and write total population: 95% male: 95% female: 95% (1984 est.)

Government Anguilla

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Anguilla

Dependency status: overseas territory of the UK

Government type: NA

Capital: The Valley

Administrative divisions: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Independence: none (overseas territory of the UK)

National holiday: Anguilla Day, 30 May

Constitution: Anguilla Constitutional Order 1 April 1982; amended 1990

Legal system: based on English common law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Governor Alan Eden HUCKLE (since 28 May 2004) head of government: Chief Minister Osbourne FLEMING (since 3 March 2000) cabinet: Executive Council appointed by the governor from among the elected members of the House of Assembly elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; governor appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed chief minister by the governor

Legislative branch: unicameral House of Assembly (11 seats total, 7 elected by direct popular vote, 2 ex officio members, and 2 appointed; members serve five-year terms) elections: last held 21 February 2005 (next to be held 2010) election results: percent of vote by party - AUF 38.9%, ANSA 19.2%, AUM 19.4%, APP 9.5 %, independents 13%; seats by party - AUF 4, ANSA 2, AUM 1

Judicial branch: High Court (judge provided by Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court)

Political parties and leaders: Anguilla United Movement or AUM [Hubert HUGHES]; The Anguilla United Front or AUF [Osbourne FLEMING, Victor BANKS], a coalition of the Anguilla Democratic Party or ADP and the Anguilla National Alliance or ANA; Anguilla Progressive Party or APP [Roy ROGERS]; Anguilla Strategic Alternative or ANSA [Edison BAIRD]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: Caricom (associate), CDB, Interpol (subbureau), OECS (associate), UPU

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Flag description: blue, with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and the Anguillan coat of arms centered in the outer half of the flag; the coat of arms depicts three orange dolphins in an interlocking circular design on a white background with blue wavy water below

Economy Anguilla

Economy - overview: Anguilla has few natural resources, and the economy depends heavily on luxury tourism, offshore banking, lobster fishing, and remittances from emigrants. Increased activity in the tourism industry, which has spurred the growth of the construction sector, has contributed to economic growth. Anguillan officials have put substantial effort into developing the offshore financial sector, which is small, but growing. In the medium term, prospects for the economy will depend largely on the tourism sector and, therefore, on revived income growth in the industrialized nations as well as on favorable weather conditions.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $112 million (2002 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 2.8% (2001 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $7,500 (2002 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 4% industry: 18% services: 78% (2002 est.)

Labor force: 6,049 (2001)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture/fishing/forestry/mining 4%, manufacturing 3%, construction 18%, transportation and utilities 10%, commerce 36%, services 29% (2000 est.)

Unemployment rate: 8% (2002)

Population below poverty line: 23% (2002)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.3%

Budget: revenues: $22.8 million expenditures: $22.5 million, including capital expenditures of NA (2000 est.)

Agriculture - products: small quantities of tobacco, vegetables; cattle raising

Industries: tourism, boat building, offshore financial services

Industrial production growth rate: 3.1% (1997 est.)

Electricity - production: NA

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: NA hydro: NA nuclear: NA other: NA

Electricity - consumption: 42.6 million kWh

Exports: $2.6 million (1999)

Exports - commodities: lobster, fish, livestock, salt, concrete blocks, rum

Exports - partners: UK, US, Puerto Rico, Saint-Martin (2000)

Imports: $80.9 million (1999)

Imports - commodities: fuels, foodstuffs, manufactures, chemicals, trucks, textiles

Imports - partners: US, Puerto Rico, UK (2000)

Debt - external: $8.8 million (1998)

Economic aid - recipient: $9 million (2004 est.)

Currency (code): East Caribbean dollar (XCD)

Currency code: XCD

Exchange rates: East Caribbean dollars per US dollar - 2.7 (2004), 2.7 (2003), 2.7 (2002), 2.7 (2001), 2.7 (2000) note: fixed rate since 1976

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Communications Anguilla

Telephones - main lines in use: 6,200 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 1,800 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: NA domestic: modern internal telephone system international: country code - 1-264; microwave radio relay to island of Saint Martin (Guadeloupe and Netherlands Antilles)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 2, FM 7, shortwave 0 (2004)

Radios: 3,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (1997)

Televisions: 1,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .ai

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 16 (2000)

Internet users: 3,000 (2002)

Transportation Anguilla

Highways: total: 105 km paved: 65 km unpaved: 40 km (1997)

Ports and harbors: Blowing Point, Road Bay

Airports: 3 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 2 under 914 m: 2 (2004 est.)

Military Anguilla

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of the UK

Transnational Issues Anguilla

Disputes - international: none

Illicit drugs: transshipment point for South American narcotics destined for the US and Europe

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Antarctica

Introduction Antarctica

Background: Speculation over the existence of a "southern land" was not confirmed until the early 1820s when British and American commercial operators and British and Russian national expeditions began exploring the Antarctic Peninsula region and other areas south of the Antarctic Circle. Not until 1840 was it established that Antarctica was indeed a continent and not just a group of islands. Several exploration "firsts" were achieved in the early 20th century. Following World War II, there was an upsurge in scientific research on the continent. A number of countries have set up year-round research stations on Antarctica. Seven have made territorial claims, but not all countries recognize these claims. In order to form a legal framework for the activities of nations on the continent, an Antarctic Treaty was negotiated that neither denies nor gives recognition to existing territorial claims; signed in 1959, it entered into force in 1961.

Geography Antarctica

Location: continent mostly south of the Antarctic Circle

Geographic coordinates: 90 00 S, 0 00 E

Map references: Antarctic Region

Area: total: 14 million sq km land: 14 million sq km (280,000 sq km ice-free, 13.72 million sq km ice-covered) (est.) note: fifth-largest continent, following Asia, Africa, North America, and South America, but larger than Australia and the subcontinent of Europe

Area - comparative: slightly less than 1.5 times the size of the US

Land boundaries: 0 km note: see entry on Disputes - international

Coastline: 17,968 km

Maritime claims: Australia, Chile, and Argentina claim Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) rights or similar over 200 nm extensions seaward from their continental claims, but like the claims themselves, these zones are not accepted by other countries; 20 of 27 Antarctic consultative nations have made no claims to Antarctic territory (although Russia and the US have reserved the right to do so) and do not recognize the claims of the other nations; also see the Disputes - international entry

Climate: severe low temperatures vary with latitude, elevation, and distance from the ocean; East Antarctica is colder than West Antarctica because of its higher elevation; Antarctic Peninsula has the most moderate climate; higher temperatures occur in January along the coast and average slightly below freezing

Terrain: about 98% thick continental ice sheet and 2% barren rock, with average elevations between 2,000 and 4,000 meters; mountain ranges up to nearly 5,000 meters; ice-free coastal areas include parts of southern Victoria Land, Wilkes Land, the Antarctic Peninsula area, and parts of Ross Island on McMurdo Sound; glaciers form ice shelves along about half of the coastline, and floating ice shelves constitute 11% of the area of the continent

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Bentley Subglacial Trench -2,555 m highest point: Vinson Massif 4,897 m note: the lowest known land point in Antarctica is hidden in the Bentley Subglacial Trench; at its surface is the deepest ice yet discovered and the world's lowest elevation not under seawater

Natural resources: iron ore, chromium, copper, gold, nickel, platinum and other minerals, and coal and hydrocarbons have been found in small uncommercial quantities; none presently exploited; krill, finfish, and crab have been taken by commercial fisheries

Land use: arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% (ice 98%, barren rock 2%) (2001)

Irrigated land: 0 sq km

Natural hazards: katabatic (gravity-driven) winds blow coastward from the high interior; frequent blizzards form near the foot of the plateau; cyclonic storms form over the ocean and move clockwise along the coast; volcanism on Deception Island and isolated areas of West Antarctica; other seismic activity rare and weak; large icebergs may calve from ice shelf

Environment - current issues: in 1998, NASA satellite data showed that the antarctic ozone hole was the largest on record, covering 27 million square kilometers; researchers in 1997 found that increased ultraviolet light passing through the hole damages the DNA of icefish, an antarctic fish lacking hemoglobin; ozone depletion earlier was shown to harm one-celled antarctic marine plants; in 2002, significant areas of ice shelves disintegrated in response to regional warming

Geography - note: the coldest, windiest, highest (on average), and driest continent; during summer, more solar radiation reaches the surface at the South Pole than is received at the Equator in an equivalent period; mostly uninhabitable

People Antarctica

Population: no indigenous inhabitants, but there are both permanent and summer-only staffed research stations note: 26 nations, all signatory to the Antarctic Treaty, operate seasonal (summer) and year-round research stations on the continent and in its surrounding oceans; the population of persons doing and supporting science on the continent and its nearby islands south of 60 degrees south latitude (the region covered by the Antarctic Treaty) varies from approximately 4,000 in summer to 1,000 in winter; in addition, approximately 1,000 personnel including ship's crew and scientists doing onboard research are present in the waters of the treaty region; summer (January) population - 3,687 total; Argentina 302, Australia 201, Belgium 13, Brazil 80, Bulgaria 16, Chile 352, China 70, Finland 11, France 100, Germany 51, India 60, Italy 106, Japan 136, South Korea 14, Netherlands 10, NZ 60, Norway 40, Peru 28, Poland 70, Russia 254, South Africa 80, Spain 43, Sweden 20, UK 192, US 1,378 (1998-99); winter (July) population - 964 total; Argentina 165, Australia 75, Brazil 12, Chile 129, China 33, France 33, Germany 9, India 25, Japan 40, South Korea 14, NZ 10, Poland 20, Russia 102, South Africa 10, UK 39, US 248 (1998-99); research stations operated within the Antarctic Treaty area (south of 60 degrees south) by members of the Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programs (COMNAP): year-round stations - 38 total; Argentina 6, Australia 3, Brazil 1, Chile 4, China 2, France 1, Germany 1, India 1, Japan 1, South Korea 1, NZ 1, Poland 1, Russia 6, South Africa 1, Ukraine 1, UK 2, US 3, Uruguay 1, Italy and France jointly 1 (2005); summer-only stations - 34 total; Argentina 8, Australia 2, Bulgaria 1, Chile 5, Ecuador 1, Finland 1, Germany 2, Italy 1, Japan 3, Norway 2, Peru 1, Russia 2, South Africa 1, Spain 2, Sweden 1, UK 1 (2004-2005); in addition, during the austral summer some nations have numerous occupied locations such as tent camps, summer-long temporary facilities, and mobile traverses in support of research

Government Antarctica

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Antarctica

Government type: Antarctic Treaty Summary - the Antarctic Treaty, signed on 1 December 1959 and entered into force on 23 June 1961, establishes the legal framework for the management of Antarctica; the 27th Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting was held in Cape Town, South Africa in May-June 2004; at these periodic meetings, decisions are made by consensus (not by vote) of all consultative member nations; at the end of 2003, there were 45 treaty member nations: 28 consultative and 17 non-consultative; consultative (decision-making) members include the seven nations that claim portions of Antarctica as national territory (some claims overlap) and 21 non-claimant nations; the US and Russia have reserved the right to make claims; the US does not recognize the claims of others; Antarctica is administered through meetings of the consultative member nations; decisions from these meetings are carried out by these member nations (with respect to their own nationals and operations) in accordance with their own national laws; the year in parentheses indicates when an acceding nation was accepted as a consultative member, while no date indicates the country was an original 1959 treaty signatory; claimant nations are - Argentina, Australia, Chile, France, New Zealand, Norway, and the UK. Nonclaimant consultative nations are - Belgium, Brazil (1983), Bulgaria (1998) China (1985), Ecuador (1990), Finland (1989), Germany (1981), India (1983), Italy (1987), Japan, South Korea (1989), Netherlands (1990), Peru (1989), Poland (1977), Russia, South Africa, Spain (1988), Sweden (1988), Ukraine (1992), Uruguay (1985), and the US; non-consultative members, with year of accession in parentheses, are - Austria (1987), Canada (1988), Colombia (1989), Cuba (1984), Czech Republic (1993), Denmark (1965), Estonia (2001), Greece (1987), Guatemala (1991), Hungary (1984), North Korea (1987), Papua New Guinea (1981), Romania (1971), Slovakia (1993), Switzerland (1990), Turkey (1995), and Venezuela (1999); Article 1 - area to be used for peaceful purposes only; military activity, such as weapons testing, is prohibited, but military personnel and equipment may be used for scientific research or any other peaceful purpose; Article 2 - freedom of scientific investigation and cooperation shall continue; Article 3 - free exchange of information and personnel, cooperation with the UN and other international agencies; Article 4 - does not recognize, dispute, or establish territorial claims and no new claims shall be asserted while the treaty is in force; Article 5 - prohibits nuclear explosions or disposal of radioactive wastes; Article 6 - includes under the treaty all land and ice shelves south of 60 degrees 00 minutes south and reserves high seas rights; Article 7 - treaty-state observers have free access, including aerial observation, to any area and may inspect all stations, installations, and equipment; advance notice of all expeditions and of the introduction of military personnel must be given; Article 8 - allows for jurisdiction over observers and scientists by their own states; Article 9 - frequent consultative meetings take place among member nations; Article 10 - treaty states will discourage activities by any country in Antarctica that are contrary to the treaty; Article 11 - disputes to be settled peacefully by the parties concerned or, ultimately, by the ICJ; Articles 12, 13, 14 - deal with upholding, interpreting, and amending the treaty among involved nations; other agreements - some 200 recommendations adopted at treaty consultative meetings and ratified by governments include - Agreed Measures for Fauna and Flora (1964) which were later incorporated into the Environmental Protocol; Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Seals (1972); Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (1980); a mineral resources agreement was signed in 1988 but remains unratified; the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty was signed 4 October 1991 and entered into force 14 January 1998; this agreement provides for the protection of the Antarctic environment through five specific annexes: 1) environmental impact assessment, 2) conservation of Antarctic fauna and flora, 3) waste disposal and waste management, 4) prevention of marine pollution, and 5) area protection and management; it prohibits all activities relating to mineral resources except scientific research; a permanent Antarctic Treaty Secretariat was established in 2004 in Buenos Aires, Argentina

Legal system: Antarctica is administered through meetings of the consultative member nations; decisions from these meetings are carried out by these member nations (with respect to their own nationals and operations) in accordance with their own national laws; US law, including certain criminal offenses by or against US nationals, such as murder, may apply extra-territorially; some US laws directly apply to Antarctica; for example, the Antarctic Conservation Act, 16 U.S.C. section 2401 et seq., provides civil and criminal penalties for the following activities, unless authorized by regulation of statute: the taking of native mammals or birds; the introduction of nonindigenous plants and animals; entry into specially protected areas; the discharge or disposal of pollutants; and the importation into the US of certain items from Antarctica; violation of the Antarctic Conservation Act carries penalties of up to $10,000 in fines and one year in prison; the National Science Foundation and Department of Justice share enforcement responsibilities; Public Law 95-541, the US Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, as amended in 1996, requires expeditions from the US to Antarctica to notify, in advance, the Office of Oceans, Room 5805, Department of State, Washington, DC 20520, which reports such plans to other nations as required by the Antarctic Treaty; for more information, contact Permit Office, Office of Polar Programs, National Science Foundation, Arlington, Virginia 22230; telephone: (703) 292-8030, or visit their website at www.nsf.gov; more generally, access to the Antarctic Treaty area, that is to all areas between 60 and 90 degrees latitude South, is subject to a number of relevant legal instruments and authorization procedures adopted by the states party to the Antarctic Treaty.

Economy Antarctica

Economy - overview: Fishing off the coast and tourism, both based abroad, account for the limited economic activity. Antarctic fisheries in 2000-01 (1 July-30 June) reported landing 112,934 metric tons. Unregulated fishing, particularly of Patagonian toothfish, is a serious problem. The Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources determines the recommended catch limits for marine species. A total of 13,571 tourists visited in the 2002-03 antarctic summer, up from the 11,588 visitors the previous year. Nearly all of them were passengers on commercial (nongovernmental) ships and several yachts that make trips during the summer. Most tourist trips last approximately two weeks.

Communications Antarctica

Telephones - main lines in use: 0 note: information for US bases only (2001)

Telephones - mobile cellular: NA

Telephone system: general assessment: local systems at some research stations domestic: NA international: country code - 672; via satellite (mobile Inmarsat and Iridium system) from some research stations

Radio broadcast stations: AM NA, FM 2, shortwave 1 note: information for US bases only (2002)

Radios: NA

Television broadcast stations: 1 (cable system with six channels; American Forces Antarctic Network-McMurdo) note: information for US bases only (2002)

Televisions: several hundred at McMurdo Station (US) note: information for US bases only (2001)

Internet country code: .aq

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): NA

Transportation Antarctica

Ports and harbors: there are no developed ports and harbors in Antarctica; most coastal stations have offshore anchorages, and supplies are transferred from ship to shore by small boats, barges, and helicopters; a few stations have a basic wharf facility; US coastal stations include McMurdo (77 51 S, 166 40 E), Palmer (64 43 S, 64 03 W); government use only except by permit (see Permit Office under "Legal System"); all ships at port are subject to inspection in accordance with Article 7, Antarctic Treaty; offshore anchorage is sparse and intermittent; relevant legal instruments and authorization procedures adopted by the states party to the Antarctic Treaty regulating access to the Antarctic Treaty area, to all areas between 60 and 90 degrees of latitude South, have to be complied with (see "Legal System") (2004)

Airports: there are no developed public access airports or landing facilities; 30 stations, operated by 16 national governments party to the Antarctic Treaty, have restricted aircraft landing facilities for either helicopters or fixed-wing aircraft; commercial enterprises operate two additional aircraft landing facilities; helicopter pads are available at 27 stations; runways at 15 locations are gravel, sea-ice, blue-ice, or compacted snow suitable for landing wheeled, fixed-wing aircraft; of these, one is greater than 3 km in length, six are between 2 km and 3 km in length, three are between 1 km and 2 km in length, three are less than 1 km in length, and two are of unknown length; snow surface skiways, limited to use by ski-equipped, fixed-wing aircraft, are available at another 15 locations; of these, four are greater than 3 km in length, three are between 2 km and 3 km in length, two are between 1 km and 2 km in length, two are less than 1 km in length, and four are of unknown length; aircraft landing facilities generally subject to severe restrictions and limitations resulting from extreme seasonal and geographic conditions; aircraft landing facilities do not meet ICAO standards; advance approval from the respective governmental or nongovernmental operating organization required for using their facilities; landed aircraft are subject to inspection in accordance with Article 7, Antarctic Treaty; guidelines for the operation of aircraft near concentrations of birds in Antarctica were adopted in 2004; relevant legal instruments and authorization procedures adopted by states party to the Antarctic Treaty regulating access to the Antarctic Treaty area, that is to all areas between 60 and 90 degrees of latitude South, have to be complied with (see information under "Legal System"); an Antarctic Flight Information Manual (AFIM) providing up-to-date details of Antarctic air facilities and procedures is maintained and published by the Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programs (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 20 over 3,047 m: 6 2,438 to 3,047 m: 3 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 4 under 914 m: 6 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 27 stations have restricted helicopter landing facilities (helipads) (2004 est.)

Military Antarctica

Military - note: the Antarctic Treaty prohibits any measures of a military nature, such as the establishment of military bases and fortifications, the carrying out of military maneuvers, or the testing of any type of weapon; it permits the use of military personnel or equipment for scientific research or for any other peaceful purposes

Transnational Issues Antarctica

Disputes - international: Antarctic Treaty freezes claims (see Antarctic Treaty Summary in Government type entry); Argentina, Australia, Chile, France, NZ, Norway, and UK claim land and maritime sectors (some overlapping) for a large portion of the continent; the US and many other states do not recognize these territorial claims and have made no claims themselves (the US and Russia reserve the right to do so); no claims have been made in the sector between 90 degrees west and 150 degrees west; several states with territorial claims in Antarctica have expressed their intention to submit data to the UN Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf to extend their continental shelf claims to adjoining undersea ridges

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Antigua and Barbuda

Introduction Antigua and Barbuda

Background: The Siboney were the first to inhabit the islands of Antigua and Barbuda in 2400 B.C., but Arawak and Carib Indians populated the islands when Columbus landed on his second voyage in 1493. Early settlements by the Spanish and French were succeeded by the English who formed a colony in 1667. Slavery, established to run the sugar plantations on Antigua, was abolished in 1834. The islands became an independent state within the British Commonwealth of Nations in 1981.

Geography Antigua and Barbuda

Location: Caribbean, islands between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, east-southeast of Puerto Rico

Geographic coordinates: 17 03 N, 61 48 W

Map references: Central America and the Caribbean

Area: total: 442.6 sq km (Antigua 280 sq km; Barbuda 161 sq km) land: 442.6 sq km water: 0 sq km note: includes Redonda, 1.6 sq km

Area - comparative: 2.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 153 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

Climate: tropical maritime; little seasonal temperature variation

Terrain: mostly low-lying limestone and coral islands, with some higher volcanic areas

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m highest point: Boggy Peak 402 m

Natural resources: NEGL; pleasant climate fosters tourism

Land use: arable land: 18.18% permanent crops: 4.55% other: 77.27% (2001)

Irrigated land: NA

Natural hazards: hurricanes and tropical storms (July to October); periodic droughts

Environment - current issues: water management - a major concern because of limited natural fresh water resources - is further hampered by the clearing of trees to increase crop production, causing rainfall to run off quickly

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Whaling signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: Antigua has a deeply indented shoreline with many natural harbors and beaches; Barbuda has a very large western harbor

People Antigua and Barbuda

Population: 68,722 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 27.9% (male 9,767/female 9,427) 15-64 years: 68% (male 23,466/female 23,250) 65 years and over: 4.1% (male 1,085/female 1,727) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 29.67 years male: 29.19 years female: 30.15 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.57% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 17.26 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 5.44 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -6.11 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.63 male(s)/female total population: 1 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 19.46 deaths/1,000 live births male: 23.43 deaths/1,000 live births female: 15.29 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 71.9 years male: 69.53 years female: 74.38 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.26 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Antiguan(s), Barbudan(s) adjective: Antiguan, Barbudan

Ethnic groups: black, British, Portuguese, Lebanese, Syrian

Religions: Christian, (predominantly Anglican with other Protestant, and some Roman Catholic)

Languages: English (official), local dialects

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over has completed five or more years of schooling total population: 89% male: 90% female: 88% (1960 est.)

Government Antigua and Barbuda

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Antigua and Barbuda

Government type: constitutional monarchy with UK-style parliament

Capital: Saint John's (Antigua)

Administrative divisions: 6 parishes and 2 dependencies*; Barbuda*, Redonda*, Saint George, Saint John, Saint Mary, Saint Paul, Saint Peter, Saint Philip

Independence: 1 November 1981 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day (National Day), 1 November (1981)

Constitution: 1 November 1981

Legal system: based on English common law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor General Sir James B. CARLISLE (since 10 June 1993) head of government: Prime Minister Winston Baldwin SPENCER (since 24 March 2004) cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; governor general chosen by the monarch on the advice of the prime minister; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the governor general

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (17-member body appointed by the governor general) and the House of Representatives (17 seats; members are elected by proportional representation to serve five-year terms) elections: House of Representatives - last held 23 March 2004 (next to be held NA 2009) election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - ALP 4, UPP 13

Judicial branch: Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (based in Saint Lucia; one judge of the Supreme Court is a resident of the islands and presides over the Court of Summary Jurisdiction)

Political parties and leaders: Antigua Labor Party or ALP [Lester Bryant BIRD]; Barbuda People's Movement or BPM [Thomas H. FRANK]; United Progressive Party or UPP [Baldwin SPENCER] (a coalition of three opposition parties - United National Democratic Party or UNDP, Antigua Caribbean Liberation Movement or ACLM, and Progressive Labor Movement or PLM)

Political pressure groups and leaders: Antigua Trades and Labor Union or ATLU [William ROBINSON]; People's Democratic Movement or PDM [Hugh MARSHALL]

International organization participation: ACP, C, Caricom, CDB, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO (subscriber), ITU, OAS, OECS, OPANAL, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Lionel A. HURST chancery: 3216 New Mexico Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20016 telephone: [1] (202) 362-5122 FAX: [1] (202) 362-5225 consulate(s) general: Miami

Diplomatic representation from the US: the US does not have an embassy in Antigua and Barbuda (embassy closed 30 June 1994); the US Ambassador to Barbados is accredited to Antigua and Barbuda

Flag description: red, with an inverted isosceles triangle based on the top edge of the flag; the triangle contains three horizontal bands of black (top), light blue, and white, with a yellow rising sun in the black band

Economy Antigua and Barbuda

Economy - overview: Tourism continues to dominate the economy, accounting for more than half of GDP. Weak tourist arrival numbers since early 2000 have slowed the economy, however, and pressed the government into a tight fiscal corner. The dual-island nation's agricultural production is focused on the domestic market and constrained by a limited water supply and a labor shortage stemming from the lure of higher wages in tourism and construction. Manufacturing comprises enclave-type assembly for export with major products being bedding, handicrafts, and electronic components. Prospects for economic growth in the medium term will continue to depend on income growth in the industrialized world, especially in the US, which accounts for slightly more than one-third of tourist arrivals.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $750 million (2002 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 3% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $11,000 (2002 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 3.9% industry: 19.2% services: 76.8% (2002)

Labor force: 30,000

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 7%, industry 11%, services 82% (1983)

Unemployment rate: 11% (2001 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 0.4% (2000 est.)

Budget: revenues: $123.7 million expenditures: $145.9 million, including capital expenditures of NA (2000 est.)

Agriculture - products: cotton, fruits, vegetables, bananas, coconuts, cucumbers, mangoes, sugarcane; livestock

Industries: tourism, construction, light manufacturing (clothing, alcohol, household appliances)

Industrial production growth rate: 6% (1997 est.)

Electricity - production: 110.8 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 103 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 3,600 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Exports: $689 million (2002)

Exports - commodities: petroleum products 48%, manufactures 23%, machinery and transport equipment 17%, food and live animals 4%, other 8%

Exports - partners: Poland 47.8%, UK 24.6%, Germany 8.7% (2004)

Imports: $692 million (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities: food and live animals, machinery and transport equipment, manufactures, chemicals, oil

Imports - partners: China 19.5%, US 18.7%, Singapore 14.8%, Poland 8.5%, Trinidad and Tobago 4.7% (2004)

Debt - external: $231 million (1999)

Economic aid - recipient: $2.3 million (1995)

Currency (code): East Caribbean dollar (XCD)

Currency code: XCD

Exchange rates: East Caribbean dollars per US dollar - 2.7 (2004), 2.7 (2003), 2.7 (2002), 2.7 (2001), 2.7 (2000) note: fixed rate since 1976

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Communications Antigua and Barbuda

Telephones - main lines in use: 38,000 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 38,200 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: NA domestic: good automatic telephone system international: country code - 1-268; 1 coaxial submarine cable; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); tropospheric scatter to Saba (Netherlands Antilles) and Guadeloupe

Radio broadcast stations: AM 4, FM 2, shortwave 0 (1998)

Radios: 36,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 2 (1997)

Televisions: 31,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .ag

Internet hosts: 1,665 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 16 (2000)

Internet users: 10,000 (2002)

Transportation Antigua and Barbuda

Highways: total: 250 km (1999 est.)

Ports and harbors: Saint John's

Merchant marine: total: 980 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 5,873,626 GRT/7,683,143 DWT by type: bulk carrier 33, cargo 630, chemical tanker 9, container 272, liquefied gas 9, petroleum tanker 1, refrigerated cargo 8, roll on/roll off 17, vehicle carrier 1 foreign-owned: 923 (Australia 2, Bangladesh 4, Belgium 4, Colombia 2, Denmark 8, Estonia 2, Germany 849, Iceland 5, Latvia 5, Lebanon 2, Lithuania 1, Netherlands 11, Norway 3, Philippines 1, Russia 1, Slovenia 5, Sweden 1, Switzerland 5, Turkey 4, United Kingdom 1, United States 7) (2005)

Airports: 3 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Antigua and Barbuda

Military branches: Royal Antigua and Barbuda Defense Force: Infantry, Coast Guard (2004)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age (est.); no conscript military service (2001)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: NA

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: NA

Transnational Issues Antigua and Barbuda

Disputes - international: none

Illicit drugs: considered a minor transshipment point for narcotics bound for the US and Europe; more significant as an offshore financial center

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Arctic Ocean

Introduction Arctic Ocean

Background: The Arctic Ocean is the smallest of the world's five oceans (after the Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, Indian Ocean, and the recently delimited Southern Ocean). The Northwest Passage (US and Canada) and Northern Sea Route (Norway and Russia) are two important seasonal waterways. A sparse network of air, ocean, river, and land routes circumscribes the Arctic Ocean.

Geography Arctic Ocean

Location: body of water between Europe, Asia, and North America, mostly north of the Arctic Circle

Geographic coordinates: 90 00 N, 0 00 E

Map references: Arctic Region

Area: total: 14.056 million sq km note: includes Baffin Bay, Barents Sea, Beaufort Sea, Chukchi Sea, East Siberian Sea, Greenland Sea, Hudson Bay, Hudson Strait, Kara Sea, Laptev Sea, Northwest Passage, and other tributary water bodies

Area - comparative: slightly less than 1.5 times the size of the US

Coastline: 45,389 km

Climate: polar climate characterized by persistent cold and relatively narrow annual temperature ranges; winters characterized by continuous darkness, cold and stable weather conditions, and clear skies; summers characterized by continuous daylight, damp and foggy weather, and weak cyclones with rain or snow

Terrain: central surface covered by a perennial drifting polar icepack that, on average, is about 3 meters thick, although pressure ridges may be three times that thickness; clockwise drift pattern in the Beaufort Gyral Stream, but nearly straight-line movement from the New Siberian Islands (Russia) to Denmark Strait (between Greenland and Iceland); the icepack is surrounded by open seas during the summer, but more than doubles in size during the winter and extends to the encircling landmasses; the ocean floor is about 50% continental shelf (highest percentage of any ocean) with the remainder a central basin interrupted by three submarine ridges (Alpha Cordillera, Nansen Cordillera, and Lomonosov Ridge)

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Fram Basin -4,665 m highest point: sea level 0 m

Natural resources: sand and gravel aggregates, placer deposits, polymetallic nodules, oil and gas fields, fish, marine mammals (seals and whales)

Natural hazards: ice islands occasionally break away from northern Ellesmere Island; icebergs calved from glaciers in western Greenland and extreme northeastern Canada; permafrost in islands; virtually ice locked from October to June; ships subject to superstructure icing from October to May

Environment - current issues: endangered marine species include walruses and whales; fragile ecosystem slow to change and slow to recover from disruptions or damage; thinning polar icepack

Geography - note: major chokepoint is the southern Chukchi Sea (northern access to the Pacific Ocean via the Bering Strait); strategic location between North America and Russia; shortest marine link between the extremes of eastern and western Russia; floating research stations operated by the US and Russia; maximum snow cover in March or April about 20 to 50 centimeters over the frozen ocean; snow cover lasts about 10 months

Economy Arctic Ocean

Economy - overview: Economic activity is limited to the exploitation of natural resources, including petroleum, natural gas, fish, and seals.

Transportation Arctic Ocean

Ports and harbors: Churchill (Canada), Murmansk (Russia), Prudhoe Bay (US)

Transportation - note: sparse network of air, ocean, river, and land routes; the Northwest Passage (North America) and Northern Sea Route (Eurasia) are important seasonal waterways

Transnational Issues Arctic Ocean

Disputes - international: some maritime disputes (see littoral states)

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Argentina

Introduction Argentina

Background: Following independence from Spain in 1816, Argentina experienced periods of internal political conflict between conservatives and liberals and between civilian and military factions. After World War II, a long period of Peronist authoritarian rule and interference in subsequent governments was followed by a military junta that took power in 1976. Democracy returned in 1983, and numerous elections since then have underscored Argentina's progress in democratic consolidation.

Geography Argentina

Location: Southern South America, bordering the South Atlantic Ocean, between Chile and Uruguay

Geographic coordinates: 34 00 S, 64 00 W

Map references: South America

Area: total: 2,766,890 sq km land: 2,736,690 sq km water: 30,200 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly less than three-tenths the size of the US

Land boundaries: total: 9,665 km border countries: Bolivia 832 km, Brazil 1,224 km, Chile 5,150 km, Paraguay 1,880 km, Uruguay 579 km

Coastline: 4,989 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

Climate: mostly temperate; arid in southeast; subantarctic in southwest

Terrain: rich plains of the Pampas in northern half, flat to rolling plateau of Patagonia in south, rugged Andes along western border

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Laguna del Carbon -105 m (located between Puerto San Julian and Comandante Luis Piedra Buena in the province of Santa Cruz) highest point: Cerro Aconcagua 6,960 m (located in the northwestern corner of the province of Mendoza)

Natural resources: fertile plains of the pampas, lead, zinc, tin, copper, iron ore, manganese, petroleum, uranium

Land use: arable land: 12.31% permanent crops: 0.48% other: 87.21% (2001)

Irrigated land: 15,610 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: San Miguel de Tucuman and Mendoza areas in the Andes subject to earthquakes; pamperos are violent windstorms that can strike the pampas and northeast; heavy flooding

Environment - current issues: environmental problems (urban and rural) typical of an industrializing economy such as deforestation, soil degradation, desertification, air pollution, and water pollution note: Argentina is a world leader in setting voluntary greenhouse gas targets

Environment - international agreements: party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling signed, but not ratified: Marine Life Conservation

Geography - note: second-largest country in South America (after Brazil); strategic location relative to sea lanes between the South Atlantic and the South Pacific Oceans (Strait of Magellan, Beagle Channel, Drake Passage); Cerro Aconcagua is South America's tallest mountain, while Laguna del Carbon is the lowest point in the Western Hemisphere

People Argentina

Population: 39,537,943 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 25.6% (male 5,170,721/female 4,938,171) 15-64 years: 63.9% (male 12,626,711/female 12,627,026) 65 years and over: 10.6% (male 1,712,117/female 2,463,197) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 29.42 years male: 28.52 years female: 30.4 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.98% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 16.9 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 7.56 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0.4 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.7 male(s)/female total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 15.18 deaths/1,000 live births male: 17.07 deaths/1,000 live births female: 13.19 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 75.91 years male: 72.17 years female: 79.85 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.19 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.7% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 130,000 (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 1,500 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Argentine(s) adjective: Argentine

Ethnic groups: white (mostly Spanish and Italian) 97%, mestizo (mixed white and Amerindian ancestry), Amerindian, or other non-white groups 3%

Religions: nominally Roman Catholic 92% (less than 20% practicing), Protestant 2%, Jewish 2%, other 4%

Languages: Spanish (official), English, Italian, German, French

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 97.1% male: 97.1% female: 97.1% (2003 est.)

Government Argentina

Country name: conventional long form: Argentine Republic conventional short form: Argentina local long form: Republica Argentina local short form: Argentina

Government type: republic

Capital: Buenos Aires

Administrative divisions: 23 provinces (provincias, singular - provincia), and 1 autonomous city* (distrito federal); Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires Capital Federal*, Catamarca, Chaco, Chubut, Cordoba, Corrientes, Entre Rios, Formosa, Jujuy, La Pampa, La Rioja, Mendoza, Misiones, Neuquen, Rio Negro, Salta, San Juan, San Luis, Santa Cruz, Santa Fe, Santiago del Estero, Tierra del Fuego - Antartida e Islas del Atlantico Sur, Tucuman note: the US does not recognize any claims to Antarctica

Independence: 9 July 1816 (from Spain)

National holiday: Revolution Day, 25 May (1810)

Constitution: 1 May 1853; revised August 1994

Legal system: mixture of US and West European legal systems; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branch: chief of state: President Nestor KIRCHNER (since 25 May 2003); Vice President Daniel SCIOLI (since 25 May 2003); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government head of government: President Nestor KIRCHNER (since 25 May 2003); Vice President Daniel SCIOLI (since 25 May 2003); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president elections: president and vice president elected on the same ticket by popular vote for four-year terms; election last held 27 April 2003 (next election to be held NA 2007) election results: results of the presidential election of 27 April 2003: Carlos Saul MENEM 24.3%, Nestor KIRCHNER 22%, Ricardo Lopez MURPHY 16.4%, Adolfo Rodriguez SAA 14.4%, Elisa CARRIO 14.2%, other 8.7%; the subsequent runoff election slated for 25 May 2003 was awarded to KIRCHNER by default after MENEM withdrew his candidacy on the eve of the election

Legislative branch: bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of the Senate (72 seats; members are elected by direct vote; presently one-third of the members elected every two years to a six-year term) and the Chamber of Deputies (257 seats; members are elected by direct vote; one-half of the members elected every two years to a four-year term) elections: Senate - last held intermittently by province during the 2nd half of 2003 (next to be held NA 2005); Chamber of Deputies - last held intermittently by province during the 2nd half of 2003 (next to be held NA 2005) election results: Senate - percent of vote by bloc or party - NA%; seats by bloc or party - PJ 41, UCR 16, provincial parties 15; Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by bloc or party - NA%; seats by bloc or party - PJ 133, UCR 46, IF 23, ARI 11, Socialist 6, other/provincial parties 38

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Corte Suprema (the nine Supreme Court judges are appointed by the president with approval by the Senate)

Political parties and leaders: Action for the Republic or AR [Domingo CAVALLO]; Alternative for a Republic of Equals or ARI [Elisa CARRIO]; Federal Recreate Movement or RECREAR [Ricardo LOPEZ MURPHY]; Front for a Country in Solidarity or Frepaso (a four-party coalition) [Dario Pedro ALESSANDRO]; Interbloque Federal or IF (a broad coalition of approximately 12 parties including RECREAR) [leader NA]; Justicialist Party or PJ (Peronist umbrella political organization) [leader NA]; Radical Civic Union or UCR [Angel ROZAS]; Socialist Party or PS [Ruben GIUSTINIANI]; Union For All [Patricia BULLRICH]; several provincial parties

Political pressure groups and leaders: Argentine Association of Pharmaceutical Labs (CILFA); Argentine Industrial Union (manufacturers' association); Argentine Rural Society (large landowners' association); business organizations; Central of Argentine Workers or CTA (a radical union for employed and unemployed workers); General Confederation of Labor or CGT (Peronist-leaning umbrella labor organization); Peronist-dominated labor movement; Roman Catholic Church; students

International organization participation: AfDB, Australia Group, BCIE, BIS, CSN, FAO, G-6, G-15, G-24, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, LAES, LAIA, Mercosur, MIGA, MINURSO, MINUSTAH, NSG, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, RG, UN, UN Security Council (temporary), UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMIK, UNMOVIC, UNTSO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Jose Octavio BORDON chancery: 1600 New Hampshire Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20009 telephone: [1] (202) 238-6400 FAX: [1] (202) 332-3171 consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Lino GUTIERREZ embassy: Avenida Colombia 4300, C1425GMN Buenos Aires mailing address: international mail: use street address; APO address: Unit 4334, APO AA 34034 telephone: [54] (11) 5777-4533 FAX: [54] (11) 5777-4240

Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of light blue (top), white, and light blue; centered in the white band is a radiant yellow sun with a human face known as the Sun of May

Economy Argentina

Economy - overview: Argentina benefits from rich natural resources, a highly literate population, an export-oriented agricultural sector, and a diversified industrial base. Over the past decade, however, the country has suffered problems of inflation, external debt, capital flight, and budget deficits. Growth in 2000 was a negative 0.8%, as both domestic and foreign investors remained skeptical of the government's ability to pay debts and maintain the peso's fixed exchange rate with the US dollar. The economic situation worsened in 2001 with the widening of spreads on Argentine bonds, massive withdrawals from the banks, and a further decline in consumer and investor confidence. Government efforts to achieve a "zero deficit," to stabilize the banking system, and to restore economic growth proved inadequate in the face of the mounting economic problems. The peso's peg to the dollar was abandoned in January 2002, and the peso was floated in February; the exchange rate plunged and real GDP fell by 10.9% in 2002, but by mid-year the economy had stabilized, albeit at a lower level. GDP expanded by more than 8% in 2003 and again in 2004, with unemployment falling and inflation remaining in single digits.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $483.5 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 8.3% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $12,400 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 10.6% industry: 35.9% services: 53.5% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 15.04 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture NA%, industry NA%, services NA%

Unemployment rate: 14.8% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 44.3% (June 2004)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA% highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 6.1% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 18.3% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $29.15 billion expenditures: $26.84 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: 118% of GDP (June 2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: sunflower seeds, lemons, soybeans, grapes, corn, tobacco, peanuts, tea, wheat; livestock

Industries: food processing, motor vehicles, consumer durables, textiles, chemicals and petrochemicals, printing, metallurgy, steel

Industrial production growth rate: 12% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 81.39 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 52.2% hydro: 40.8% nuclear: 6.7% other: 0.2% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 81.65 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 2.818 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 8.775 billion kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 755,000 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 486,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 2.9 billion bbl (2004 est.)

Natural gas - production: 37.15 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 31.1 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 6.05 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 768 billion cu m (2004)

Current account balance: $5.473 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $33.78 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: edible oils, fuels and energy, cereals, feed, motor vehicles

Exports - partners: Brazil 15.3%, Chile 10.7%, US 10.2%, China 8.7%, Spain 4.4% (2004)

Imports: $22.06 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment, motor vehicles, chemicals, metal manufactures, plastics

Imports - partners: Brazil 36.2%, US 16.6%, Germany 5.7%, China 4.3% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $19.47 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $157.7 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $10 billion (2001 est.)

Currency (code): Argentine peso (ARS)

Currency code: ARS

Exchange rates: Argentine pesos per US dollar - 2.9233 (2004), 2.9006 (2003), 3.0633 (2002), 0.9995 (2001), 0.9995 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Argentina

Telephones - main lines in use: 8,009,400 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 6.5 million (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: by opening the telecommunications market to competition and foreign investment with the "Telecommunications Liberalization Plan of 1998," Argentina encouraged the growth of modern telecommunication technology; fiber-optic cable trunk lines are being installed between all major cities; the major networks are entirely digital and the availability of telephone service is being improved; however, telephone density is presently minimal, and making telephone service universally available will take time domestic: microwave radio relay, fiber-optic cable, and a domestic satellite system with 40 earth stations serve the trunk network; more than 110,000 pay telephones are installed and mobile telephone use is rapidly expanding international: country code - 54; satellite earth stations - 8 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); Atlantis II and Unisur submarine cables; two international gateways near Buenos Aires (1999)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 260 (including 10 inactive stations), FM NA (probably more than 1,000, mostly unlicensed), shortwave 6 (1998)

Radios: 24.3 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 42 (plus 444 repeaters) (1997)

Televisions: 7.95 million (1997)

Internet country code: .ar

Internet hosts: 742,358 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 33 (2000)

Internet users: 4.1 million (2002)

Transportation Argentina

Railways: total: 34,091 km (167 km electrified) broad gauge: 20,594 km 1.676-m gauge (141 km electrified) standard gauge: 2,885 km 1.435-m gauge (26 km electrified) narrow gauge: 10,375 km 1.000-m gauge; 237 km 0.750-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 215,471 km paved: 63,348 km (including 734 km of expressways) unpaved: 152,123 km (1999)

Waterways: 11,000 km (2004)

Pipelines: gas 27,166 km; liquid petroleum gas 41 km; oil 3,668 km; refined products 2,945 km; unknown (oil/water) 13 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Bahia Blanca, Buenos Aires, Concepcion del Uruguay, La Plata, Punta Colorada, Rosario, San Lorenzo-San Martin, San Nicolas

Merchant marine: total: 26 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 149,007 GRT/212,620 DWT by type: bulk carrier 2, cargo 9, chemical tanker 1, passenger 1, passenger/cargo 3, petroleum tanker 7, refrigerated cargo 2, roll on/roll off 1 foreign-owned: 2 (Chile 1, Uruguay 1) registered in other countries: 23 (2005)

Airports: 1,334 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 144 over 3,047 m: 4 2,438 to 3,047 m: 26 1,524 to 2,437 m: 62 914 to 1,523 m: 44 under 914 m: 8 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1,190 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 2 1,524 to 2,437 m: 50 914 to 1,523 m: 569 under 914 m: 567 (2004 est.)

Military Argentina

Military branches: Argentine Army, Navy of the Argentine Republic (includes Naval Aviation and Marines), Argentine Air Force (Fuerza Aerea Argentina, FAA)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service; no conscription (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 8,981,886 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 7,316,038 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 344,575 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $4.3 billion (FY99)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.3% (FY00)

Military - note: the Argentine military is a well-organized force constrained by the country's prolonged economic hardship; the country has recently experienced a strong recovery, and the military is now implementing "Plan 2000," aimed at making the ground forces lighter and more responsive (2005)

Transnational Issues Argentina

Disputes - international: Argentina claims the UK-administered Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands in its constitution; it briefly occupied the Falklands in 1982, but in 1995 agreed no longer to seek settlement by force; territorial claim in Antarctica partially overlaps UK and Chilean claims (see Antarctic disputes); unruly region at convergence of Argentina-Brazil-Paraguay borders is locus of money laundering, smuggling, arms and illegal narcotics trafficking, and fundraising for extremist organizations; uncontested dispute between Brazil and Uruguay over Braziliera Island in the Quarai/Cuareim River leaves the tripoint with Argentina in question

Illicit drugs: used as a transshipment country for cocaine headed for Europe and the US; some money-laundering activity, especially in the Tri-Border Area; domestic consumption of drugs in urban centers is increasing

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Armenia

Introduction Armenia

Background: Armenia prides itself on being the first nation to formally adopt Christianity (early 4th century). Despite periods of autonomy, over the centuries Armenia came under the sway of various empires including the Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Persian, and Ottoman. It was incorporated into Russia in 1828 and the USSR in 1920. Armenian leaders remain preoccupied by the long conflict with Muslim Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh, a primarily Armenian-populated region, assigned to Soviet Azerbaijan in the 1920s by Moscow. Armenia and Azerbaijan began fighting over the area in 1988; the struggle escalated after both countries attained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. By May 1994, when a cease-fire took hold, Armenian forces held not only Nagorno-Karabakh but also a significant portion of Azerbaijan proper. The economies of both sides have been hurt by their inability to make substantial progress toward a peaceful resolution. Turkey imposed an economic blockade on Armenia and closed the common border because of the Armenian occupation of Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding areas.

Geography Armenia

Location: Southwestern Asia, east of Turkey

Geographic coordinates: 40 00 N, 45 00 E

Map references: Asia

Area: total: 29,800 sq km land: 28,400 sq km water: 1,400 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Maryland

Land boundaries: total: 1,254 km border countries: Azerbaijan-proper 566 km, Azerbaijan-Naxcivan exclave 221 km, Georgia 164 km, Iran 35 km, Turkey 268 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: highland continental, hot summers, cold winters

Terrain: Armenian Highland with mountains; little forest land; fast flowing rivers; good soil in Aras River valley

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Debed River 400 m highest point: Aragats Lerrnagagat' 4,090 m

Natural resources: small deposits of gold, copper, molybdenum, zinc, alumina

Land use: arable land: 17.55% permanent crops: 2.3% other: 80.15% (2001)

Irrigated land: 2,870 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: occasionally severe earthquakes; droughts

Environment - current issues: soil pollution from toxic chemicals such as DDT; the energy crisis of the 1990s led to deforestation when citizens scavenged for firewood; pollution of Hrazdan (Razdan) and Aras Rivers; the draining of Sevana Lich (Lake Sevan), a result of its use as a source for hydropower, threatens drinking water supplies; restart of Metsamor nuclear power plant in spite of its location in a seismically active zone

Environment - international agreements: party to: Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants

Geography - note: landlocked in the Lesser Caucasus Mountains; Sevana Lich (Lake Sevan) is the largest lake in this mountain range

People Armenia

Population: 2,982,904 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 21.6% (male 339,453/female 305,214) 15-64 years: 67.5% (male 938,734/female 1,074,240) 65 years and over: 10.9% (male 131,519/female 193,744) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 30.07 years male: 27.45 years female: 32.84 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: -0.25% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 11.76 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 8.16 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -6.1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.17 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.11 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.87 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.68 male(s)/female total population: 0.9 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 23.28 deaths/1,000 live births male: 28.51 deaths/1,000 live births female: 17.13 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 71.55 years male: 67.97 years female: 75.75 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.32 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.1% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 2,600 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 200 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Armenian(s) adjective: Armenian

Ethnic groups: Armenian 97.9%, Yezidi (Kurd) 1.3%, Russian 0.5%, other 0.3% (2001 census)

Religions: Armenian Apostolic 94.7%, other Christian 4%, Yezidi (monotheist with elements of nature worship) 1.3%

Languages: Armenian 97.7%, Yezidi 1%, Russian 0.9%, other 0.4% (2001 census)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 98.6% male: 99.4% female: 98% (2003 est.)

Government Armenia

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Armenia conventional short form: Armenia local long form: Hayastani Hanrapetut'yun local short form: Hayastan former: Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic; Armenian Republic

Government type: republic

Capital: Yerevan

Administrative divisions: 11 provinces (marzer, singular - marz); Aragatsotn, Ararat, Armavir, Geghark'unik', Kotayk', Lorri, Shirak, Syunik', Tavush, Vayots' Dzor, Yerevan

Independence: 21 September 1991 (from Soviet Union)

National holiday: Independence Day, 21 September (1991)

Constitution: adopted by nationwide referendum 5 July 1995

Legal system: based on civil law system

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Robert KOCHARIAN (since 30 March 1998) head of government: Prime Minister Andranik MARGARYAN (since 12 May 2000) cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the prime minister elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; election last held 19 February and 5 March 2003 (next to be held NA 2008); prime minister appointed by the president; the prime minister and Council of Ministers must resign if the National Assembly refuses to accept their program election results: Robert KOCHARIAN reelected president; percent of vote - Robert KOCHARIAN 67.5%, Stepan DEMIRCHYAN 32.5%

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly (Parliament) or Azgayin Zhoghov (131 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms; 75 members elected by party list, 56 by direct vote) elections: last held 25 May 2003 (next to be held in the spring of 2007) note: percent of vote by party - Republican Party 23.5%, Justice Bloc 13.6%, Rule of Law 12.3%, ARF (Dashnak) 11.4%, National Unity Party 8.8%, United Labor Party 5.7%; seats by party - Republican Party 23, Justice Bloc 14, Rule of Law 12, ARF (Dashnak) 11, National Unity 9, United Labor 6; note - seats by party change frequently as deputies switch parties or announce themselves independent

Judicial branch: Constitutional Court; Court of Cassation (Appeals Court)

Political parties and leaders: Agro-Industrial Party [Vladimir BADALIAN]; Armenia Party [Myasnik MALKHASYAN]; Armenian National Movement or ANM [Alex ARZUMANYAN, chairman]; Armenian Ramkavar Liberal Party or HRAK [Harutyun MIRZAKHANYAN, chairman]; Armenian Revolutionary Federation ("Dashnak" Party) or ARF [Vahan HOVHANISSIAN]; Democratic Party [Aram SARKISYAN]; Justice Bloc (comprised of the Democratic Party, National Democratic Party, National Democratic Union, and the People's Party) [Stepan DEMIRCHYAN]; National Democratic Party [Shavarsh KOCHARIAN]; National Democratic Union or NDU [Vazgen MANUKIAN]; National Unity Party [Artashes GEGAMIAN, chairman]; People's Party of Armenia [Stepan DEMIRCHYAN]; Republic Party [Albert BAZEYAN and Aram SARKISYAN, chairmen]; Republican Party or RPA [Andranik MARKARYAN]; Rule of Law Party [Artur BAGDASARIAN, chairman]; Union of Constitutional Rights [Hrant KHACHATURYAN]; United Labor Party [Gurgen ARSENIAN]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Yerkrapah Union [Manvel GRIGORIAN]

International organization participation: BSEC, CE, CIS, EAPC, EBRD, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt (signatory), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MIGA, NAM (observer), OAS (observer), OPCW, OSCE, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Tatoul MARKARIAN chancery: 2225 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 319-1976 FAX: [1] (202) 319-2982 consulate(s) general: Los Angeles

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador John M. EVANS embassy: 18 Baghramyan Ave., Yerevan 375019 mailing address: American Embassy Yerevan, Department of State, 7020 Yerevan Place, Washington, DC 20521-7020 telephone: [374](1) 521-611, 520-791, 542-117, 542-132, 524-661, 527-001, 524-840 FAX: [374](1) 520-800

Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of red (top), blue, and orange

Economy Armenia

Economy - overview: Under the old Soviet central planning system, Armenia had developed a modern industrial sector, supplying machine tools, textiles, and other manufactured goods to sister republics in exchange for raw materials and energy. Since the implosion of the USSR in December 1991, Armenia has switched to small-scale agriculture away from the large agroindustrial complexes of the Soviet era. The agricultural sector has long-term needs for more investment and updated technology. The privatization of industry has been at a slower pace, but has been given renewed emphasis by the current administration. Armenia is a food importer, and its mineral deposits (copper, gold, bauxite) are small. The ongoing conflict with Azerbaijan over the ethnic Armenian-dominated region of Nagorno-Karabakh and the breakup of the centrally directed economic system of the former Soviet Union contributed to a severe economic decline in the early 1990s. By 1994, however, the Armenian Government had launched an ambitious IMF-sponsored economic liberalization program that resulted in positive growth rates in 1995-2003. Armenia joined the WTO in January 2003. Armenia also has managed to slash inflation, stabilize the local currency (the dram), and privatize most small- and medium-sized enterprises. The chronic energy shortages Armenia suffered in the early and mid-1990s have been offset by the energy supplied by one of its nuclear power plants at Metsamor. Armenia is now a net energy exporter, although it does not have sufficient generating capacity to replace Metsamor, which is under international pressure to close. The electricity distribution system was privatized in 2002. Armenia's severe trade imbalance has been offset somewhat by international aid and foreign direct investment. Economic ties with Russia remain close, especially in the energy sector.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $13.65 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 9% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $4,600 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 22.9% industry: 36.1% services: 41.1% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 1.4 million (2001)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 45%, industry 25%, services 30% (2002 est.)

Unemployment rate: 30% (2003 est.)

Population below poverty line: 50% (2002 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2.3% highest 10%: 46.2% (1999)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 44.4 (1996)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3.5% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 19.8% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $428.1 million expenditures: $491.2 million, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: fruit (especially grapes), vegetables; livestock

Industries: diamond-processing, metal-cutting machine tools, forging-pressing machines, electric motors, tires, knitted wear, hosiery, shoes, silk fabric, chemicals, trucks, instruments, microelectronics, jewelry manufacturing, software development, food processing, brandy

Industrial production growth rate: 15% (2002 est.)

Electricity - production: 6.492 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 42.3% hydro: 27% nuclear: 30.7% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 5.797 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 704 million kWh; note - exports an unknown quantity to Georgia; includes exports to Nagorno-Karabakh region in Azerbaijan (2002)

Electricity - imports: 463 million kWh; note - imports an unknown quantity from Iran (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 5,700 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 1.4 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 1.4 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Current account balance: $-240.4 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $850 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: diamonds, mineral products, foodstuffs, energy

Exports - partners: Belgium 18%, Israel 15.3%, Germany 13.3%, Russia 12.5%, US 8.1%, Netherlands 7.2%, Iran 5.5%, Georgia 4.3%, UAE 4% (2004)

Imports: $1.3 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: natural gas, petroleum, tobacco products, foodstuffs, diamonds

Imports - partners: Russia 11.3%, Belgium 10.1%, Israel 8.4%, US 7.6%, Iran 7.1%, UAE 6.1%, Ukraine 5.9%, Italy 5.5%, Germany 5.2%, Georgia 4.6%, France 4.5% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $555 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $905 million (June 2001)

Economic aid - recipient: ODA $170 million (2000)

Currency (code): dram (AMD)

Currency code: AMD

Exchange rates: drams per US dollar - 533.45 (2004), 578.76 (2003), 573.35 (2002), 555.08 (2001), 539.53 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Armenia

Telephones - main lines in use: 562,600 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 114,400 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: system inadequate; now 90% privately owned and undergoing modernization and expansion domestic: the majority of subscribers and the most modern equipment are in Yerevan (this includes paging and mobile cellular service) international: country code - 374; Yerevan is connected to the Trans-Asia-Europe fiber-optic cable through Iran; additional international service is available by microwave radio relay and landline connections to the other countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States and through the Moscow international switch and by satellite to the rest of the world; satellite earth stations - 1 Intelsat (2000)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 9, FM 6, shortwave 1 (1998)

Radios: 850,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 3 (plus an unknown number of repeaters); (1998)

Televisions: 825,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .am

Internet hosts: 2,206 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 9 (2001)

Internet users: 150,000 (2003)

Transportation Armenia

Railways: total: 845 km broad gauge: 845 km 1.520-m gauge (828 km electrified) note: some lines are out of service (2004)

Highways: total: 8,431 km paved: 8,161 km (includes 7,567 km of expressways) unpaved: 270 km (2002)

Pipelines: gas 1,871 km (2004)

Airports: 16 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 11 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 5 914 to 1,523 m: 3 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 5 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 914 to 1,523 m: 2 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Armenia

Military branches: Army, Air Force, Air Defense Force

Military service age and obligation: 18-27 years of age for compulsory military service, conscript service obligation - 12 months; 18 years of age for voluntary military service (May 2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 722,836 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 551,938 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 31,774 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $135 million (FY01)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 6.5% (FY01)

Transnational Issues Armenia

Disputes - international: Armenia supports ethnic Armenian secessionists in Nagorno-Karabakh and since the early 1990s, has militarily occupied 16% of Azerbaijan - Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) continues to mediate dispute; over 800,000 mostly ethnic Azerbaijanis were driven from the occupied lands and Armenia; about 230,000 ethnic Armenians were driven from their homes in Azerbaijan into Armenia; Azerbaijan seeks transit route through Armenia to connect to Naxcivan exclave; border with Turkey remains closed over Nagorno-Karabakh dispute; ethnic Armenian groups in Javakheti region of Georgia seek greater autonomy; tens of thousands of Armenians emigrate, primarily to Russia, to seek employment

Refugees and internally displaced persons: refugees (country of origin): 236,306 (Azerbaijan) IDPs: 50,000 (conflict with Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh) (2004)

Illicit drugs: illicit cultivation of small amount of cannabis for domestic consumption; used as a transit point for illicit drugs - mostly opium and hashish - moving from Southwest Asia to Russia and to a lesser extent the rest of Europe

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Aruba

Introduction Aruba

Background: Discovered and claimed for Spain in 1499, Aruba was acquired by the Dutch in 1636. The island's economy has been dominated by three main industries. A 19th century gold rush was followed by prosperity brought on by the opening in 1924 of an oil refinery. The last decades of the 20th century saw a boom in the tourism industry. Aruba seceded from the Netherlands Antilles in 1986 and became a separate, autonomous member of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Movement toward full independence was halted at Aruba's request in 1990.

Geography Aruba

Location: Caribbean, island in the Caribbean Sea, north of Venezuela

Geographic coordinates: 12 30 N, 69 58 W

Map references: Central America and the Caribbean

Area: total: 193 sq km land: 193 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly larger than Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 68.5 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: tropical marine; little seasonal temperature variation

Terrain: flat with a few hills; scant vegetation

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m highest point: Mount Jamanota 188 m

Natural resources: NEGL; white sandy beaches

Land use: arable land: 10.53% (including aloe 0.01%) permanent crops: 0% other: 89.47% (2001)

Irrigated land: 0.01 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: lies outside the Caribbean hurricane belt

Environment - current issues: NA

Geography - note: a flat, riverless island renowned for its white sand beaches; its tropical climate is moderated by constant trade winds from the Atlantic Ocean; the temperature is almost constant at about 27 degrees Celsius (81 degrees Fahrenheit)

People Aruba

Population: 71,566 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 19.9% (male 7,308/female 6,960) 15-64 years: 68.2% (male 23,736/female 25,068) 65 years and over: 11.9% (male 3,486/female 5,008) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 38 years male: 36.07 years female: 39.7 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.47% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 11.26 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 6.57 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.7 male(s)/female total population: 0.93 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 5.89 deaths/1,000 live births male: 6.71 deaths/1,000 live births female: 5.03 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 79.14 years male: 75.8 years female: 82.65 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.79 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Aruban(s) adjective: Aruban; Dutch

Ethnic groups: mixed white/Caribbean Amerindian 80%

Religions: Roman Catholic 82%, Protestant 8%, Hindu, Muslim, Confucian, Jewish

Languages: Dutch (official), Papiamento (a Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, English dialect), English (widely spoken), Spanish

Literacy: definition: total population: 97% male: NA% female: NA%

Government Aruba

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Aruba

Dependency status: part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; full autonomy in internal affairs obtained in 1986 upon separation from the Netherlands Antilles; Dutch Government responsible for defense and foreign affairs

Government type: parliamentary democracy

Capital: Oranjestad

Administrative divisions: none (part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands)

Independence: none (part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands)

National holiday: Flag Day, 18 March

Constitution: 1 January 1986

Legal system: based on Dutch civil law system, with some English common law influence

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen BEATRIX of the Netherlands (since 30 April 1980), represented by Governor General Fredis REFUNJOL (since 11 May 2004) head of government: Prime Minister Nelson O. ODUBER (since 30 October 2001) cabinet: Council of Ministers (elected by the Staten) elections: the monarch is hereditary; governor general appointed for a six-year term by the monarch; prime minister and deputy prime minister elected by the Staten for four-year terms; election last held 28 September 2001 (next to be held by December 2005) election results: Nelson O. ODUBER elected prime minister; percent of legislative vote - NA

Legislative branch: unicameral Legislature or Staten (21 seats; members elected by direct, popular vote to serve four-year terms) elections: last held 23 September 2005 (next to be held by NA 2009) election results: percent of vote by party - MEP 43%, AVP 32%, MPA 7%, RED 7%, PDR 6%, OLA 4%, PPA 2%; seats by party - MEP 11, AVP 8, MPA 1, RED 1

Judicial branch: Common Court of Justice of Aruba (judges are appointed by the monarch)

Political parties and leaders: Aliansa/Aruban Social Movement or MSA [Robert WEVER]; Aruban Liberal Organization or OLA [Glenbert CROES]; Aruban Patriotic Movement or MPA [Monica ARENDS-KOCK]; Aruban Patriotic Party or PPA [Benny NISBET]; Aruban People's Party or AVP [Mike EMAN]; People's Electoral Movement Party or MEP [Nelson O. ODUBER]; Real Democracy or PDR [Andin BIKKER]; RED [Rudy LAMPE]; Workers Political Platform or PTT [Gregorio WOLFF]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, UNESCO (associate), UPU, WCL, WToO (associate)

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (represented by the Kingdom of the Netherlands); note - Mr. Henry Baarh, Minister Plenipotentiary for Aruba at the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands

Diplomatic representation from the US: the US does not have an embassy in Aruba; the Consul General to Netherlands Antilles is accredited to Aruba

Flag description: blue, with two narrow, horizontal, yellow stripes across the lower portion and a red, four-pointed star outlined in white in the upper hoist-side corner

Economy Aruba

Economy - overview: Tourism is the mainstay of the small, open Aruban economy, with offshore banking and oil refining and storage also important. The rapid growth of the tourism sector over the last decade has resulted in a substantial expansion of other activities. Construction has boomed, with hotel capacity five times the 1985 level. In addition, the reopening of the country's oil refinery in 1993, a major source of employment and foreign exchange earnings, has further spurred growth. Aruba's small labor force and exceptionally low unemployment rate have led to a large number of unfilled job vacancies, despite sharp rises in wage rates in recent years. Tourist arrivals have declined in the aftermath of the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks on the US. The government now must deal with a budget deficit and a negative trade balance.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $1.94 billion (2002 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: -1.5% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $28,000 (2002 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: NA% industry: NA% services: NA%

Labor force: 41,500 (1997 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: most employment is in wholesale and retail trade and repair, followed by hotels and restaurants; oil refining

Unemployment rate: 0.6% (2003 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3.2% (2002 est.)

Budget: revenues: $135.8 million expenditures: $147 million, including capital expenditures of NA (2000)

Agriculture - products: aloes; livestock; fish

Industries: tourism, transshipment facilities, oil refining

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - production: 807.7 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 751.2 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 6,500 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Exports: $128 million f.o.b. (including oil reexports) (2002 est.)

Exports - commodities: live animals and animal products, art and collectibles, machinery and electrical equipment, transport equipment

Exports - partners: Netherlands 28.5%, Panama 17.5%, Venezuela 14.7%, Netherlands Antilles 11.2%, Colombia 10.7%, US 10.4% (2004)

Imports: $841 million f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and electrical equipment, crude oil for refining and reexport, chemicals; foodstuffs

Imports - partners: US 55.5%, Netherlands 14.1%, Venezuela 3.3% (2004)

Debt - external: $285 million (1996)

Economic aid - recipient: $26 million (1995); note - the Netherlands provided a $127 million aid package to Aruba and Suriname in 1996

Currency (code): Aruban guilder/florin (AWG)

Currency code: AWG

Exchange rates: Aruban guilders/florins per US dollar - 1.79 (2004), 1.79 (2003), 1.79 (2002), 1.79 (2001), 1.79 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Aruba

Telephones - main lines in use: 37,100 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 53,000 (2001)

Telephone system: general assessment: modern fully automatic telecommunications system domestic: increased competition through privatization; 3 wireless service providers are now licensed international: country code - 297; 1 submarine cable to Sint Maarten (Netherlands Antilles); extensive interisland microwave radio relay links

Radio broadcast stations: AM 2, FM 16, shortwave 0 (2004)

Radios: 50,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (1997)

Televisions: 20,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .aw

Internet hosts: 923 (2001)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): NA

Internet users: 24,000 (2002)

Transportation Aruba

Highways: total: 800 km paved: 513 km unpaved: 287 km note: most coastal roads are paved, while unpaved roads serve large tracts of the interior (1995)

Ports and harbors: Barcadera, Oranjestad, Sint Nicolaas

Airports: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 1 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Aruba

Military branches: no regular indigenous military forces; Royal Dutch Navy and Marines, Coast Guard

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of the Kingdom of the Netherlands

Transnational Issues Aruba

Disputes - international: none

Illicit drugs: transit point for US- and Europe-bound narcotics with some accompanying money-laundering activity

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Ashmore and Cartier Islands

Introduction Ashmore and Cartier Islands

Background: These uninhabited islands came under Australian authority in 1931; formal administration began two years later. Ashmore Reef supports a rich and diverse avian and marine habitat; in 1983, it became a National Nature Reserve. Cartier Island, a former bombing range, is now a marine reserve.

Geography Ashmore and Cartier Islands

Location: Southeastern Asia, islands in the Indian Ocean, midway between northwestern Australia and Timor island

Geographic coordinates: 12 14 S, 123 05 E

Map references: Southeast Asia

Area: total: 5 sq km land: 5 sq km water: 0 sq km note: includes Ashmore Reef (West, Middle, and East Islets) and Cartier Island

Area - comparative: about eight times the size of The Mall in Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 74.1 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 12 nm continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical

Terrain: low with sand and coral

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m highest point: unnamed location 3 m

Natural resources: fish

Land use: arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% (all grass and sand) (2001)

Irrigated land: 0 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: surrounded by shoals and reefs that can pose maritime hazards

Environment - current issues: NA

Geography - note: Ashmore Reef National Nature Reserve established in August 1983

People Ashmore and Cartier Islands

Population: no indigenous inhabitants note: Indonesian fishermen are allowed access to the lagoon and fresh water at Ashmore Reef's West Island (July 2005 est.)

People - note: the landing of illegal immigrants from Indonesia's Rote Island has become an ongoing problem

Government Ashmore and Cartier Islands

Country name: conventional long form: Territory of Ashmore and Cartier Islands conventional short form: Ashmore and Cartier Islands

Dependency status: territory of Australia; administered by the Australian Department of Transport and Regional Services

Legal system: the laws of the Commonwealth of Australia and the laws of the Northern Territory of Australia, where applicable, apply

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (territory of Australia)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (territory of Australia)

Flag description: the flag of Australia is used

Economy Ashmore and Cartier Islands

Economy - overview: no economic activity

Transportation Ashmore and Cartier Islands

Ports and harbors: none; offshore anchorage only

Military Ashmore and Cartier Islands

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of Australia; periodic visits by the Royal Australian Navy and Royal Australian Air Force

Transnational Issues Ashmore and Cartier Islands

Disputes - international: Indonesian groups challenge Australia's claim to Ashmore Reef; Australia closed the surrounding waters to Indonesian traditional fishing and created a national park in the region while continuing to prospect for hydrocarbons in the vicinity

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Atlantic Ocean

Introduction Atlantic Ocean

Background: The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest of the world's five oceans (after the Pacific Ocean, but larger than the Indian Ocean, Southern Ocean, and Arctic Ocean). The Kiel Canal (Germany), Oresund (Denmark-Sweden), Bosporus (Turkey), Strait of Gibraltar (Morocco-Spain), and the Saint Lawrence Seaway (Canada-US) are important strategic access waterways. The decision by the International Hydrographic Organization in the spring of 2000 to delimit a fifth world ocean, the Southern Ocean, removed the portion of the Atlantic Ocean south of 60 degrees south.

Geography Atlantic Ocean

Location: body of water between Africa, Europe, the Southern Ocean, and the Western Hemisphere

Geographic coordinates: 0 00 N, 25 00 W

Map references: Political Map of the World

Area: total: 76.762 million sq km note: includes Baltic Sea, Black Sea, Caribbean Sea, Davis Strait, Denmark Strait, part of the Drake Passage, Gulf of Mexico, Labrador Sea, Mediterranean Sea, North Sea, Norwegian Sea, almost all of the Scotia Sea, and other tributary water bodies

Area - comparative: slightly less than 6.5 times the size of the US

Coastline: 111,866 km

Climate: tropical cyclones (hurricanes) develop off the coast of Africa near Cape Verde and move westward into the Caribbean Sea; hurricanes can occur from May to December, but are most frequent from August to November

Terrain: surface usually covered with sea ice in Labrador Sea, Denmark Strait, and coastal portions of the Baltic Sea from October to June; clockwise warm-water gyre (broad, circular system of currents) in the northern Atlantic, counterclockwise warm-water gyre in the southern Atlantic; the ocean floor is dominated by the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, a rugged north-south centerline for the entire Atlantic basin

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Milwaukee Deep in the Puerto Rico Trench -8,605 m highest point: sea level 0 m

Natural resources: oil and gas fields, fish, marine mammals (seals and whales), sand and gravel aggregates, placer deposits, polymetallic nodules, precious stones

Natural hazards: icebergs common in Davis Strait, Denmark Strait, and the northwestern Atlantic Ocean from February to August and have been spotted as far south as Bermuda and the Madeira Islands; ships subject to superstructure icing in extreme northern Atlantic from October to May; persistent fog can be a maritime hazard from May to September; hurricanes (May to December)

Environment - current issues: endangered marine species include the manatee, seals, sea lions, turtles, and whales; drift net fishing is hastening the decline of fish stocks and contributing to international disputes; municipal sludge pollution off eastern US, southern Brazil, and eastern Argentina; oil pollution in Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, Lake Maracaibo, Mediterranean Sea, and North Sea; industrial waste and municipal sewage pollution in Baltic Sea, North Sea, and Mediterranean Sea

Geography - note: major chokepoints include the Dardanelles, Strait of Gibraltar, access to the Panama and Suez Canals; strategic straits include the Strait of Dover, Straits of Florida, Mona Passage, The Sound (Oresund), and Windward Passage; the Equator divides the Atlantic Ocean into the North Atlantic Ocean and South Atlantic Ocean

Economy Atlantic Ocean

Economy - overview: The Atlantic Ocean provides some of the world's most heavily trafficked sea routes, between and within the Eastern and Western Hemispheres. Other economic activity includes the exploitation of natural resources, e.g., fishing, dredging of aragonite sands (The Bahamas), and production of crude oil and natural gas (Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, and North Sea).

Transportation Atlantic Ocean

Ports and harbors: Alexandria (Egypt), Algiers (Algeria), Antwerp (Belgium), Barcelona (Spain), Buenos Aires (Argentina), Casablanca (Morocco), Colon (Panama), Copenhagen (Denmark), Dakar (Senegal), Gdansk (Poland), Hamburg (Germany), Helsinki (Finland), Las Palmas (Canary Islands, Spain), Le Havre (France), Lisbon (Portugal), London (UK), Marseille (France), Montevideo (Uruguay), Montreal (Canada), Naples (Italy), New Orleans (US), New York (US), Oran (Algeria), Oslo (Norway), Peiraiefs or Piraeus (Greece), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Rotterdam (Netherlands), Saint Petersburg (Russia), Stockholm (Sweden)

Transportation - note: Kiel Canal and Saint Lawrence Seaway are two important waterways; significant domestic commercial and recreational use of Intracoastal Waterway on central and south Atlantic seaboard and Gulf of Mexico coast of US

Transnational Issues Atlantic Ocean

Disputes - international: some maritime disputes (see littoral states)

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Australia

Introduction Australia

Background: Aboriginal settlers arrived on the continent from Southeast Asia about 40,000 years before the first Europeans began exploration in the 17th century. No formal territorial claims were made until 1770, when Capt. James COOK took possession in the name of Great Britain. Six colonies were created in the late 18th and 19th centuries; they federated and became the Commonwealth of Australia in 1901. The new country took advantage of its natural resources to rapidly develop its agricultural and manufacturing industries and to make a major contribution to the British effort in World Wars I and II. In recent decades, Australia has transformed itself into an internationally competitive, advanced market economy. It boasted one of the OECD's fastest growing economies during the 1990's, a performance due in large part to economic reforms adopted in the 1980's. Long-term concerns include pollution, particularly depletion of the ozone layer, and management and conservation of coastal areas, especially the Great Barrier Reef.

Geography Australia

Location: Oceania, continent between the Indian Ocean and the South Pacific Ocean

Geographic coordinates: 27 00 S, 133 00 E

Map references: Oceania

Area: total: 7,686,850 sq km land: 7,617,930 sq km water: 68,920 sq km note: includes Lord Howe Island and Macquarie Island

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than the US contiguous 48 states

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 25,760 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

Climate: generally arid to semiarid; temperate in south and east; tropical in north

Terrain: mostly low plateau with deserts; fertile plain in southeast

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Lake Eyre -15 m highest point: Mount Kosciuszko 2,229 m

Natural resources: bauxite, coal, iron ore, copper, tin, gold, silver, uranium, nickel, tungsten, mineral sands, lead, zinc, diamonds, natural gas, petroleum

Land use: arable land: 6.55% (includes about 27 million hectares of cultivated grassland) permanent crops: 0.04% other: 93.41% (2001)

Irrigated land: 24,000 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: cyclones along the coast; severe droughts; forest fires

Environment - current issues: soil erosion from overgrazing, industrial development, urbanization, and poor farming practices; soil salinity rising due to the use of poor quality water; desertification; clearing for agricultural purposes threatens the natural habitat of many unique animal and plant species; the Great Barrier Reef off the northeast coast, the largest coral reef in the world, is threatened by increased shipping and its popularity as a tourist site; limited natural fresh water resources

Environment - international agreements: party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling signed, but not ratified: Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol

Geography - note: world's smallest continent but sixth-largest country; population concentrated along the eastern and southeastern coasts; the invigorating tropical sea breeze known as the "Fremantle Doctor" affects the city of Perth on the west coast, and is one of the most consistent winds in the world

People Australia

Population: 20,090,437 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 19.8% (male 2,038,809/female 1,943,563) 15-64 years: 67.2% (male 6,815,600/female 6,695,189) 65 years and over: 12.9% (male 1,145,274/female 1,452,002) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 36.56 years male: 35.74 years female: 37.4 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.87% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 12.26 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 7.44 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 3.91 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.79 male(s)/female total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 4.69 deaths/1,000 live births male: 5.08 deaths/1,000 live births female: 4.27 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 80.39 years male: 77.52 years female: 83.4 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.76 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.1% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 14,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 200 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Australian(s) adjective: Australian

Ethnic groups: Caucasian 92%, Asian 7%, aboriginal and other 1%

Religions: Catholic 26.4%, Anglican 20.5%, other Christian 20.5%, Buddhist 1.9%, Muslim 1.5%, other 1.2%, unspecified 12.7%, none 15.3% (2001 Census)

Languages: English 79.1%, Chinese 2.1%, Italian 1.9%, other 11.1%, unspecified 5.8% (2001 Census)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 100% male: 100% female: 100% (1980 est.)

Government Australia

Country name: conventional long form: Commonwealth of Australia conventional short form: Australia

Government type: democratic, federal-state system recognizing the British monarch as sovereign

Capital: Canberra

Administrative divisions: 6 states and 2 territories*; Australian Capital Territory*, New South Wales, Northern Territory*, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, Western Australia

Dependent areas: Ashmore and Cartier Islands, Christmas Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands, Coral Sea Islands, Heard Island and McDonald Islands, Norfolk Island, Macquarie Island

Independence: 1 January 1901 (federation of UK colonies)

National holiday: Australia Day, 26 January (1788)

Constitution: 9 July 1900, effective 1 January 1901

Legal system: based on English common law; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen of Australia ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor General Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Michael JEFFERY (since 11 August 2003) head of government: Prime Minister John Winston HOWARD (since 11 March 1996); Deputy Prime Minister Mark VAILE (since 6 July 2005) cabinet: Prime Minister nominates, from among members of Parliament, candidates who are subsequently sworn in by the Governor General to serve as government ministers elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; governor general appointed by the monarch on the recommendation of the prime minister; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or leader of a majority coalition is sworn in as prime minister by the governor general note: government coalition - Liberal Party and National Party

Legislative branch: bicameral Federal Parliament consists of the Senate (76 seats - 12 from each of the six states and two from each of the two mainland territories; one-half of state members are elected every three years by popular vote to serve six-year terms while all territory members are elected every three years) and the House of Representatives (150 seats; members elected by popular preferential voting to serve terms of up to three-years; no state can have fewer than five representatives) elections: Senate - last held 9 October 2004 (next to be held no later than June 2008); House of Representatives - last held 9 October 2004 (next to be called no later than November 2007) election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party (for session beginning on 1 July 2005) - Liberal Party-National Party coalition 39, Australian Labor Party 28, Democrats 4, Australian Greens 4, Family First Party 1; House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - Liberal Party-National Party coalition 87, Australian Labor Party 60, independents 3

Judicial branch: High Court (the chief justice and six other justices are appointed by the governor general)

Political parties and leaders: Australian Democrats [Lyn ALLISON]; Australian Labor Party [Kim BEAZLEY]; Australian Progressive Alliance [Meg LEES]; Australian Greens [Bob BROWN]; Liberal Party [John Winston HOWARD]; The Nationals [Mark VAILE]; One Nation Party [Len HARRIS]; Family First Party [Steve FIELDING]

International organization participation: ANZUS, APEC, ARF, AsDB, ASEAN (dialogue partner), Australia Group, BIS, C, CP, EBRD, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MIGA, NAM (guest), NEA, NSG, OECD, OPCW, Paris Club, PCA, PIF, Sparteca, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNMEE, UNMISET, UNTSO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, WToO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Michael J. THAWLEY chancery: 1601 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036 telephone: [1] (202) 797-3000 FAX: [1] (202) 797-3168 consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Chicago, Honolulu, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: William A. STANTON, Charge d'Affaires ad interim embassy: Moonah Place, Yarralumla, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 2600 mailing address: APO AP 96549 telephone: [61] (02) 6214-5600 FAX: [61] (02) 6214-5970 consulate(s) general: Melbourne, Perth, Sydney

Flag description: blue with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and a large seven-pointed star in the lower hoist-side quadrant known as the Commonwealth Star, representing the federation of the colonies of Australia in 1901; the star depicts one point for each of the six original states and one representing all of Australia's internal and external territories; the remaining half is a representation of the Southern Cross constellation in white with one small five-pointed star and four larger, seven-pointed stars

Economy Australia

Economy - overview: Australia has an enviable Western-style capitalist economy, with a per capita GDP on par with the four dominant West European economies. Rising output in the domestic economy, robust business and consumer confidence, and rising exports of raw materials and agricultural products are fueling the economy. Australia's emphasis on reforms, low inflation, and growing ties with China are other key factors behind the economy's strength. The impact of drought, weak foreign demand, and strong import demand pushed the trade deficit up from $8 billion in 2002, to $18 billion in 2003, and to $13 billion in 2004. One other concern is the rapid increase in domestic housing prices, which have raised the prospect that interest rates will need to be raised to prevent a speculative bubble.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $611.7 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 3.5% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $30,700 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 3.4% industry: 28.2% services: 68.4% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 10.35 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 3.6%, industry 26.4%, services 70% (2004 est.)

Unemployment rate: 5.1% (December 2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2% highest 10%: 25.4% (1994)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 35.2 (1994)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.3% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 25.3% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $222.7 billion expenditures: $221.7 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: 17.4% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: wheat, barley, sugarcane, fruits; cattle, sheep, poultry

Industries: mining, industrial and transportation equipment, food processing, chemicals, steel

Industrial production growth rate: 1.9% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 210.3 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 90.8% hydro: 8.3% nuclear: 0% other: 0.9% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 195.6 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 537,500 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 796,500 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: 523,400 bbl/day (2001)

Oil - imports: 530,800 bbl/day (2001)

Oil - proved reserves: 3.664 billion bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - production: 33.08 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 23.33 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 9.744 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 2.407 trillion cu m (1 January 2002)

Current account balance: $-38.3 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $86.89 billion (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: coal, gold, meat, wool, alumina, iron ore, wheat, machinery and transport equipment

Exports - partners: Japan 18.6%, China 9.2%, US 8.1%, South Korea 7.7%, New Zealand 7.4%, India 4.6%, UK 4.2% (2004)

Imports: $98.1 billion (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and transport equipment, computers and office machines, telecommunication equipment and parts; crude oil and petroleum products

Imports - partners: US 14.8%, China 12.7%, Japan 11.8%, Germany 5.8%, Singapore 4.4%, UK 4.1% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $35.14 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $308.7 billion (3rd quarter, 2004 est.)

Economic aid - donor: ODA, $894 million (FY99/00)

Currency (code): Australian dollar (AUD)

Currency code: AUD

Exchange rates: Australian dollars per US dollar - 1.3598 (2004), 1.5419 (2003), 1.8406 (2002), 1.9334 (2001), 1.7248 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June

Communications Australia

Telephones - main lines in use: 10.815 million (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 14.347 million (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: excellent domestic and international service domestic: domestic satellite system; much use of radiotelephone in areas of low population density; rapid growth of mobile cellular telephones international: country code - 61; submarine cables to New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, and Indonesia; satellite earth stations - 10 Intelsat (4 Indian Ocean and 6 Pacific Ocean), 2 Inmarsat (Indian and Pacific Ocean regions) (1998)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 262, FM 345, shortwave 1 (1998)

Radios: 25.5 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 104 (1997)

Televisions: 10.15 million (1997)

Internet country code: .au

Internet hosts: 2,847,763 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 571 (2002)

Internet users: 9.472 million (2002)

Transportation Australia

Railways: total: 54,439 km (3859 km electrified) broad gauge: 5,434 km 1.600-m gauge standard gauge: 34,110 km 1.435-m gauge (1,397 km electrified) narrow gauge: 14,895 km 1.067-m gauge (2,462 km electrified) dual gauge: 213 km dual gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 811,603 km paved: 314,090 km (including 18,619 km of expressways) unpaved: 497,513 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: 2,000 km (mainly used for recreation on Murray and Murray-Darling river systems) (2004)

Pipelines: condensate/gas 492 km; gas 28,680 km; liquid petroleum gas 240 km; oil 4,773 km; oil/gas/water 110 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Brisbane, Dampier, Fremantle, Gladstone, Hay Point, Melbourne, Newcastle, Port Hedland, Port Kembla, Port Walcott, Sydney

Merchant marine: total: 55 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 1,531,461 GRT/1,999,409 DWT by type: bulk carrier 16, cargo 7, chemical tanker 3, container 1, liquefied gas 4, passenger 5, passenger/cargo 6, petroleum tanker 8, roll on/roll off 5 foreign-owned: 16 (France 1, Germany 3, Japan 1, Philippines 1, Saudi Arabia 1, United Kingdom 2, United States 7) registered in other countries: 35 (2005)

Airports: 448 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 305 over 3,047 m: 10 2,438 to 3,047 m: 12 1,524 to 2,437 m: 131 914 to 1,523 m: 139 under 914 m: 13 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 143 1,524 to 2,437 m: 17 914 to 1,523 m: 112 under 914 m: 14 (2004 est.)

Military Australia

Military branches: Australian Defense Force (ADF): Australian Army, Royal Australian Navy, Royal Australian Air Force, Special Operations Command

Military service age and obligation: 16 years of age for voluntary service (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 16-49: 4,943,676 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 16-49: 4,092,717 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 142,158 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $16.65 billion (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 2.7% (2004)

Transnational Issues Australia

Disputes - international: East Timor and Australia continue to meet but disagree over how to delimit a permanent maritime boundary and share unexploited petroleum resources that fall outside the Joint Petroleum Development Area covered by the 2002 Timor Sea Treaty; East Timor dispute hampers creation of a revised maritime boundary with Indonesia (see also Ashmore and Cartier Islands dispute); regional states express concern over Australia's 2004 declaration of a 1,000-nautical mile-wide maritime indentification zone; Australia asserts land and maritime claims to Antarctica (see Antarctica); in 2004 Australia submitted claims to UNCLOS to extend its continental margin from both its mainland and Antarctic claims

Illicit drugs: Tasmania is one of the world's major suppliers of licit opiate products; government maintains strict controls over areas of opium poppy cultivation and output of poppy straw concentrate

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Austria

Introduction Austria

Background: Once the center of power for the large Austro-Hungarian Empire, Austria was reduced to a small republic after its defeat in World War I. Following annexation by Nazi Germany in 1938 and subsequent occupation by the victorious Allies in 1945, Austria's status remained unclear for a decade. A State Treaty signed in 1955 ended the occupation, recognized Austria's independence, and forbade unification with Germany. A constitutional law that same year declared the country's "perpetual neutrality" as a condition for Soviet military withdrawal. Following the Soviet Union's collapse in 1991 and Austria's entry into the European Union in 1995, some Austrians have called into question this neutrality. A prosperous, democratic country, Austria entered the Economic and Monetary Union in 1999.

Geography Austria

Location: Central Europe, north of Italy and Slovenia

Geographic coordinates: 47 20 N, 13 20 E

Map references: Europe

Area: total: 83,870 sq km land: 82,444 sq km water: 1,426 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Maine

Land boundaries: total: 2,562 km border countries: Czech Republic 362 km, Germany 784 km, Hungary 366 km, Italy 430 km, Liechtenstein 35 km, Slovakia 91 km, Slovenia 330 km, Switzerland 164 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: temperate; continental, cloudy; cold winters with frequent rain and some snow in lowlands and snow in mountains; moderate summers with occasional showers

Terrain: in the west and south mostly mountains (Alps); along the eastern and northern margins mostly flat or gently sloping

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Neusiedler See 115 m highest point: Grossglockner 3,798 m

Natural resources: oil, coal, lignite, timber, iron ore, copper, zinc, antimony, magnesite, tungsten, graphite, salt, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 16.91% permanent crops: 0.86% other: 82.23% (2001)

Irrigated land: 457 sq km (2000 est.)

Natural hazards: landslides; avalanches; earthquakes

Environment - current issues: some forest degradation caused by air and soil pollution; soil pollution results from the use of agricultural chemicals; air pollution results from emissions by coal- and oil-fired power stations and industrial plants and from trucks transiting Austria between northern and southern Europe

Environment - international agreements: party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: landlocked; strategic location at the crossroads of central Europe with many easily traversable Alpine passes and valleys; major river is the Danube; population is concentrated on eastern lowlands because of steep slopes, poor soils, and low temperatures elsewhere

People Austria

Population: 8,184,691 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 15.6% (male 656,058/female 624,574) 15-64 years: 67.8% (male 2,790,673/female 2,756,612) 65 years and over: 16.6% (male 543,626/female 813,148) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 40.44 years male: 39.3 years female: 41.61 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.11% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 8.81 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 9.7 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 1.97 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.67 male(s)/female total population: 0.95 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 4.66 deaths/1,000 live births male: 5.74 deaths/1,000 live births female: 3.53 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 78.92 years male: 76.03 years female: 81.96 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.36 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.3% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 10,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 100 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Austrian(s) adjective: Austrian

Ethnic groups: Austrians 91.1%, former Yugoslavs 4% (includes Croatians, Slovenes, Serbs, and Bosniaks), Turks 1.6%, German 0.9%, other or unspecified 2.4% (2001 census)

Religions: Roman Catholic 73.6%, Protestant 4.7%, Muslim 4.2%, other 3.5%, unspecified 2%, none 12% (2001 census)

Languages: German (official nationwide), Slovene (official in Carinthia), Croatian (official in Burgenland), Hungarian (official in Burgenland)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 98% male: NA% female: NA%

Government Austria

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Austria conventional short form: Austria local long form: Republik Oesterreich local short form: Oesterreich

Government type: federal republic

Capital: Vienna

Administrative divisions: 9 states (Bundeslaender, singular - Bundesland); Burgenland, Kaernten, Niederoesterreich, Oberoesterreich, Salzburg, Steiermark, Tirol, Vorarlberg, Wien (Vienna)

Independence: 1156 (Duchy of Austria founded); 12 November 1918 (republic proclaimed)

National holiday: National Day, 26 October (1955); note - commemorates the State Treaty restoring national sovereignty and the end of occupation and the passage of the law on permanent neutrality

Constitution: 1920; revised 1929 (reinstated 1 May 1945)

Legal system: civil law system with Roman law origin; judicial review of legislative acts by the Constitutional Court; separate administrative and civil/penal supreme courts; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal; compulsory for presidential elections

Executive branch: chief of state: President Heinz FISCHER (since 8 July 2004) head of government: Chancellor Wolfgang SCHUESSEL (OeVP)(since 4 February 2000); Vice Chancellor Hubert GORBACH (since 21 October 2003) cabinet: Council of Ministers chosen by the president on the advice of the chancellor elections: president elected by direct popular vote for a six-year term; presidential election last held 25 April 2004 (next to be held April 2010); chancellor traditionally chosen by the president from the plurality party in the National Council; vice chancellor chosen by the president on the advice of the chancellor election results: Heinz FISCHER elected president; percent of vote - Heinz FISCHER (SPOe) 52.4%, Benita FERRERO-WALDNER (OeVP) 47.6% note: government coalition - OeVP and FPOe

Legislative branch: bicameral Federal Assembly or Bundesversammlung consists of Federal Council or Bundesrat (62 members; members represent each of the states on the basis of population, but with each state having at least three representatives; members serve a five- or six-year term) and the National Council or Nationalrat (183 seats; members elected by direct popular vote to serve four-year terms) elections: National Council - last held 24 November 2002 (next to be held in the fall of 2006) election results: National Council - percent of vote by party - OeVP 42.3%, SPOe 36.5%, FPOe 10.0%, Greens 9.5%; seats by party - OeVP 79, SPOe 69, FPOe 18, Greens 17; seating as of May 2005 after split within the Freedom Party: OeVP 79, SPOe 69, Greens 17, BZOe 11, FPOe 7

Judicial branch: Supreme Judicial Court or Oberster Gerichtshof; Administrative Court or Verwaltungsgerichtshof; Constitutional Court or Verfassungsgerichtshof

Political parties and leaders: Alliance for the Future of Austria or BZOe [Joerg HAIDER]; Austrian People's Party or OeVP [Wolfgang SCHUESSEL]; Freedom Party of Austria or FPOe [Heinz Christian STRACHE]; Social Democratic Party of Austria or SPOe [Alfred GUSENBAUER]; The Greens [Alexander VAN DER BELLEN]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Austrian Trade Union Federation (nominally independent but primarily Socialist) or OeGB; Federal Economic Chamber; OeVP-oriented League of Austrian Industrialists or VOeI; Roman Catholic Church, including its chief lay organization, Catholic Action; three composite leagues of the Austrian People's Party or OeVP representing business, labor, and farmers and other non-government organizations in the areas of environment and human rights

International organization participation: AfDB, AsDB, Australia Group, BIS, BSEC (observer), CE, CEI, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, EIB, EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, G- 9, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MIGA, MINURSO, NAM (guest), NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club, PCA, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNDOF, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNMEE, UNMIK, UNOMIG, UNTSO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WEU (observer), WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Eva NOWOTNY chancery: 3524 International Court NW, Washington, DC 20008-3035 telephone: [1] (202) 895-6700 FAX: [1] (202) 895-6750 consulate(s) general: Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador William Lee LYONS BROWN, Jr. embassy: Boltzmanngasse 16, A-1090, Vienna mailing address: use embassy street address telephone: [43] (1) 31339-0, 31375, 31335 FAX: [43] (1) 3100682

Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of red (top), white, and red

Economy Austria

Economy - overview: Austria, with its well-developed market economy and high standard of living, is closely tied to other EU economies, especially Germany's. The economy features up-to-date industrial and agricultural sectors. Timber is a key industry, 47% of the land area being forested. Membership in the EU has drawn an influx of foreign investors attracted by Austria's access to the single European market and proximity to the new EU economies. Slow growth in Europe has held the economy to 0.7% growth in 2001, 1.4% in 2002, 0.8% in 2003, and 1.9% in 2004. To meet increased competition from both EU and Central European countries, particularly the new EU members, Austria will need to emphasize knowledge-based sectors of the economy, continue to deregulate the service sector, and encourage much greater participation in the labor market by its aging population. The aging phenomenon, together with already high health and pension costs, poses fundamental problems in tax and welfare policies.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $255.9 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 1.9% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $31,300 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 2.3% industry: 30.8% services: 66.9% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 3.45 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture and forestry 4%, industry and crafts 29%, services 67% (2001 est.)

Unemployment rate: 4.4% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 3.9% (1999)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2.5% highest 10%: 22.5% (1995)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 31 (1995)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1.8% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 22.6% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $142.5 billion expenditures: $146.4 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: 64.2% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: grains, potatoes, sugar beets, wine, fruit; dairy products, cattle, pigs, poultry; lumber

Industries: construction, machinery, vehicles and parts, food, metals, chemicals, lumber and wood processing, paper and paperboard, communications equipment, tourism

Industrial production growth rate: 3.3% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 58.49 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 29.3% hydro: 67.2% nuclear: 0% other: 3.5% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 55.09 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 14.7 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 15.4 billion kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 20,670 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 262,400 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: 35,470 bbl/day (2001)

Oil - imports: 262,000 bbl/day (2001)

Oil - proved reserves: 85.69 million bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - production: 1.731 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 7.81 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 403 million cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 6.033 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 24.9 billion cu m (1 January 2002)

Current account balance: $-3.283 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $102.7 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: machinery and equipment, motor vehicles and parts, paper and paperboard, metal goods, chemicals, iron and steel; textiles, foodstuffs

Exports - partners: Germany 32%, Italy 8.9%, US 6%, Switzerland 4.8%, France 4.2%, UK 4.2% (2004)

Imports: $101.2 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment, motor vehicles, chemicals, metal goods, oil and oil products; foodstuffs

Imports - partners: Germany 46.3%, Italy 6.8%, Switzerland 4.3% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $12.73 billion (2003)

Debt - external: $15.5 billion (2003 est.)

Economic aid - donor: ODA, $520 million (2002)

Currency (code): euro (EUR) note: on 1 January 1999, the European Monetary Union introduced the euro as a common currency to be used by the financial institutions of member countries; as of 1 January 2002, the euro became the only legal tender in EMU member countries, including Austria

Currency code: EUR

Exchange rates: euros per US dollar - 0.8054 (2004), 0.886 (2003), 1.0626 (2002), 1.1175 (2001), 1.0854 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Austria

Telephones - main lines in use: 3.881 million (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 7,094,500 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: highly developed and efficient domestic: there are 48 main lines for every 100 persons; the fiber optic net is very extensive; all telephone applications and Internet services are available international: country code - 43; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean) and 1 Eutelsat; in addition, there are about 600 VSAT (very small aperture terminals) (2002)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 2, FM 65 (plus several hundred repeaters), shortwave 1 (2001)

Radios: 6.08 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 10 (plus more than 1,000 repeaters) (2001)

Televisions: 4.25 million (1997)

Internet country code: .at

Internet hosts: 387,006 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 37 (2000)

Internet users: 3.73 million (2003)

Transportation Austria

Railways: total: 6,021 km (3,552 km electrified) standard gauge: 5,565 km 1.435-m gauge (3,430 km electrified) narrow gauge: 34 km 1.000-m gauge (28 km electrified); 422 km 0.760-m gauge (94 km electrified) (2004)

Highways: total: 200,000 km paved: 200,000 km (including 1,645 km of expressways) unpaved: 0 km (2002)

Waterways: 358 km (2003)

Pipelines: gas 2,722 km; oil 663 km; refined products 149 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Enns, Krems, Linz, Vienna

Merchant marine: total: 8 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 29,624 GRT/37,425 DWT by type: cargo 6, container 2 foreign-owned: 2 (Netherlands 2) registered in other countries: 19 (2005)

Airports: 55 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 24 over 3,047 m: 1 2,438 to 3,047 m: 5 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 3 under 914 m: 14 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 31 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 3 under 914 m: 27 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Austria

Military branches: Land Forces (KdoLdSK), Air Forces (KdoLuSK)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for compulsory military service; 16 years of age for voluntary service; from 2007, at the earliest, compulsory military service obligation will be reduced from 8 months to 6 (June 2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 1,914,800 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 1,550,441 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 48,967 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $1.497 billion (FY01/02)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 0.9% (2004)

Transnational Issues Austria

Disputes - international: none

Illicit drugs: transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin and South American cocaine destined for Western Europe

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Azerbaijan

Introduction Azerbaijan

Background: Azerbaijan - a nation with a Turkic and majority-Muslim population - regained its independence after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Despite a 1994 cease-fire, Azerbaijan has yet to resolve its conflict with Armenia over the Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh enclave (largely Armenian populated). Azerbaijan has lost 16% of its territory and must support some 571,000 internally displaced persons as a result of the conflict. Corruption is ubiquitous and the promise of widespread wealth from Azerbaijan's undeveloped petroleum resources remains largely unfulfilled.

Geography Azerbaijan

Location: Southwestern Asia, bordering the Caspian Sea, between Iran and Russia, with a small European portion north of the Caucasus range

Geographic coordinates: 40 30 N, 47 30 E

Map references: Asia

Area: total: 86,600 sq km land: 86,100 sq km water: 500 sq km note: includes the exclave of Naxcivan Autonomous Republic and the Nagorno-Karabakh region; the region's autonomy was abolished by Azerbaijani Supreme Soviet on 26 November 1991

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Maine

Land boundaries: total: 2,013 km border countries: Armenia (with Azerbaijan-proper) 566 km, Armenia (with Azerbaijan-Naxcivan exclave) 221 km, Georgia 322 km, Iran (with Azerbaijan-proper) 432 km, Iran (with Azerbaijan-Naxcivan exclave) 179 km, Russia 284 km, Turkey 9 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked); note - Azerbaijan borders the Caspian Sea (800 km, est.)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: dry, semiarid steppe

Terrain: large, flat Kur-Araz Ovaligi (Kura-Araks Lowland) (much of it below sea level) with Great Caucasus Mountains to the north, Qarabag Yaylasi (Karabakh Upland) in west; Baku lies on Abseron Yasaqligi (Apsheron Peninsula) that juts into Caspian Sea

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Caspian Sea -28 m highest point: Bazarduzu Dagi 4,485 m

Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas, iron ore, nonferrous metals, alumina

Land use: arable land: 19.63% permanent crops: 2.71% other: 77.66% (2001)

Irrigated land: 14,550 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: droughts

Environment - current issues: local scientists consider the Abseron Yasaqligi (Apsheron Peninsula) (including Baku and Sumqayit) and the Caspian Sea to be the ecologically most devastated area in the world because of severe air, soil, and water pollution; soil pollution results from oil spills, from the use of DDT as a pesticide, and from toxic defoliants used in the production of cotton

Environment - international agreements: party to: Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: both the main area of the country and the Naxcivan exclave are landlocked

People Azerbaijan

Population: 7,911,974 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 26.4% (male 1,063,731/female 1,028,684) 15-64 years: 65.7% (male 2,533,762/female 2,665,381) 65 years and over: 7.8% (male 245,758/female 374,658) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 27.53 years male: 26.09 years female: 29 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.59% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 20.4 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 9.86 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -4.64 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.03 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.66 male(s)/female total population: 0.94 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 81.74 deaths/1,000 live births male: 83.58 deaths/1,000 live births female: 79.8 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 63.35 years male: 59.24 years female: 67.66 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.44 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: less than 0.1% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 1,400 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 100 (2001 est.)

Nationality: noun: Azerbaijani(s) adjective: Azerbaijani

Ethnic groups: Azeri 90.6%, Dagestani 2.2%, Russian 1.8%, Armenian 1.5%, other 3.9% (1999 census) note: almost all Armenians live in the separatist Nagorno-Karabakh region

Religions: Muslim 93.4%, Russian Orthodox 2.5%, Armenian Orthodox 2.3%, other 1.8% (1995 est.) note: religious affiliation is still nominal in Azerbaijan; percentages for actual practicing adherents are much lower

Languages: Azerbaijani (Azeri) 89%, Russian 3%, Armenian 2%, other 6% (1995 est.)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 98.8% male: 99.5% female: 98.2% (1999 est.)

Government Azerbaijan

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Azerbaijan conventional short form: Azerbaijan local long form: Azarbaycan Respublikasi local short form: none former: Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic

Government type: republic

Capital: Baku (Baki)

Administrative divisions: 59 rayons (rayonlar; rayon - singular), 11 cities* (saharlar; sahar - singular), 1 autonomous republic** (muxtar respublika) : rayons: Abseron Rayonu, Agcabadi Rayonu, Agdam Rayonu, Agdas Rayonu, Agstafa Rayonu, Agsu Rayonu, Astara Rayonu, Balakan Rayonu, Barda Rayonu, Beylaqan Rayonu, Bilasuvar Rayonu, Cabrayil Rayonu, Calilabad Rayonu, Daskasan Rayonu, Davaci Rayonu, Fuzuli Rayonu, Gadabay Rayonu, Goranboy Rayonu, Goycay Rayonu, Haciqabul Rayonu, Imisli Rayonu, Ismayilli Rayonu, Kalbacar Rayonu, Kurdamir Rayonu, Lacin Rayonu, Lankaran Rayonu, Lerik Rayonu, Masalli Rayonu, Neftcala Rayonu, Oguz Rayonu, Qabala Rayonu, Qax Rayonu, Qazax Rayonu, Qobustan Rayonu, Quba Rayonu, Qubadli Rayonu, Qusar Rayonu, Saatli Rayonu, Sabirabad Rayonu, Saki Rayonu, Salyan Rayonu, Samaxi Rayonu, Samkir Rayonu, Samux Rayonu, Siyazan Rayonu, Susa Rayonu, Tartar Rayonu, Tovuz Rayonu, Ucar Rayonu, Xacmaz Rayonu, Xanlar Rayonu, Xizi Rayonu, Xocali Rayonu, Xocavand Rayonu, Yardimli Rayonu, Yevlax Rayonu, Zangilan Rayonu, Zaqatala Rayonu, Zardab Rayonu : cities: Ali Bayramli Sahari, Baki Sahari, Ganca Sahari, Lankaran Sahari, Mingacevir Sahari, Naftalan Sahari, Saki Sahari, Sumqayit Sahari, Susa Sahari, Xankandi Sahari, Yevlax Sahari : autonomous republic: Naxcivan Muxtar Respublikasi

Independence: 30 August 1991 (from Soviet Union)

National holiday: Founding of the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan, 28 May (1918)

Constitution: adopted 12 November 1995

Legal system: based on civil law system

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Ilham ALIYEV (since 31 October 2003) head of government: Prime Minister Artur RASIZADE (since 4 November 2003); First Deputy Prime Minister Abbas ABBASOV (since 10 November 2003) cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president and confirmed by the National Assembly elections: president elected by popular vote to a five-year term; election last held 15 October 2003 (next to be held October 2008); prime minister and first deputy prime ministers appointed by the president and confirmed by the National Assembly election results: Ilham ALIYEV elected president; percent of vote - Ilham ALIYEV 76.8%, Isa GAMBAR 14%

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Milli Mejlis (125 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) elections: last held 4 November 2000 (next to be held NA November 2005) note: 100 members of the current parliament were elected on the basis of single mandate constituencies, while 25 were elected based on proportional balloting; as a result of a 24 August 2002 national referendum on changes to the constitution, all 125 members of the next parliament will be elected from single mandate constituencies election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - NAP and allies 108, APF "Reform" 6, CSP 3, PNIA 2, Musavat Party 2, CPA 2, APF "Classic" 1, Compatriot Party 1 note: PNIA, Musavat, and APF "Classic" parties refused to take their seats

Judicial branch: Supreme Court

Political parties and leaders: Azerbaijan Popular Front or APF [Ali KARIMLI, leader of "Reform" faction; Mirmahmud MIRALI-OGLU, leader of "Classic" faction]; Civic Solidarity Party or CSP [Sabir RUSTAMKHANLY]; Civic Union Party [Ayaz MUTALIBOV]; Communist Party of Azerbaijan or CPA [Ramiz AHMADOV]; Compatriot Party [Mais SAFARLI]; Democratic Party for Azerbaijan or DPA [Rasul QULIYEV, chairman]; Justice Party [Ilyas ISMAILOV]; Liberal Party of Azerbaijan [Lala Shovkat HACIYEVA]; Musavat [Isa GAMBAR, chairman]; New Azerbaijan Party or NAP [vacant]; Party for National Independence of Azerbaijan or PNIA [Etibar MAMMADLI, chairman]; Social Democratic Party of Azerbaijan or SDP [Araz ALIZADE and Ayaz MUTALIBOV] note: opposition parties regularly factionalize and form new parties

Political pressure groups and leaders: Sadval, Lezgin movement; self-proclaimed Armenian Nagorno-Karabakh Republic; Talysh independence movement; Union of Pro-Azerbaijani Forces (UPAF)

International organization participation: AsDB, BSEC, CE, CIS, EAPC, EBRD, ECO, FAO, GUUAM, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MIGA, OAS (observer), OIC, OPCW, OSCE, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO (observer)

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Hafiz PASHAYEV chancery: 2741 34th Street NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 337-3500 FAX: [1] (202) 337-5911

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Reno L. HARNISH III embassy: 83 Azadlyg Prospecti, Baku AZ1007 mailing address: American Embassy Baku, Department of State, 7050 Baku Place, Washington, DC 20521-7050 telephone: [9] (9412) 98-03-35, 36, 37 FAX: [9] (9412) 656-671

Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of blue (top), red, and green; a crescent and eight-pointed star in white are centered in red band

Economy Azerbaijan

Economy - overview: Azerbaijan's number one export is oil. Azerbaijan's oil production declined through 1997 but has registered an increase every year since. Negotiation of production-sharing arrangements (PSAs) with foreign firms, which have thus far committed $60 billion to long-term oilfield development, should generate the funds needed to spur future industrial development. Oil production under the first of these PSAs, with the Azerbaijan International Operating Company, began in November 1997. Azerbaijan shares all the formidable problems of the former Soviet republics in making the transition from a command to a market economy, but its considerable energy resources brighten its long-term prospects. Baku has only recently begun making progress on economic reform, and old economic ties and structures are slowly being replaced. One obstacle to economic progress is the need for stepped up foreign investment in the non-energy sector. A second obstacle is the continuing conflict with Armenia over the Nagorno-Karabakh region. Trade with Russia and the other former Soviet republics is declining in importance while trade is building with Turkey and the nations of Europe. Long-term prospects will depend on world oil prices, the location of new pipelines in the region, and Azerbaijan's ability to manage its oil wealth.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $30.01 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 9.8% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $3,800 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 14.1% industry: 45.7% services: 40.2% (2002 est.)

Labor force: 5.09 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture and forestry 41%, industry 7%, services 52% (2001)

Unemployment rate: 1.2% (official rate) (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 49% (2002 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2.8% highest 10%: 27.8% (1995)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 36 (1995)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 4.6% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 65.1% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $2.715 billion expenditures: $2.801 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: 18.9% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: cotton, grain, rice, grapes, fruit, vegetables, tea, tobacco; cattle, pigs, sheep, goats

Industries: petroleum and natural gas, petroleum products, oilfield equipment; steel, iron ore, cement; chemicals and petrochemicals; textiles

Industrial production growth rate: 4% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 17.55 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 89.7% hydro: 10.3% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 17.37 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 505 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 1.558 billion kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 312,800 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 140,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 589 million bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - production: 5.72 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 6.72 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 1 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 62.3 billion cu m (1 January 2002)

Current account balance: $-2.899 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $3.168 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: oil and gas 90%, machinery, cotton, foodstuffs

Exports - partners: Italy 26.6%, Czech Republic 11.9%, Germany 8.1%, Indonesia 6.4%, Romania 6.2%, Georgia 6%, Russia 5.3%, Turkey 5.2%, France 4.1% (2004)

Imports: $3.622 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment, oil products, foodstuffs, metals, chemicals

Imports - partners: Russia 16.1%, UK 12.5%, Turkey 10.5%, Germany 7.8%, Ukraine 5.6%, Netherlands 4.9%, US 4.1%, Italy 4% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $875 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $1.832 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: ODA, $140 million (2000 est.)

Currency (code): Azerbaijani manat (AZM)

Currency code: AZM

Exchange rates: Azerbaijani manats per US dollar - 4,913.48 (2004), 4,910.73 (2003), 4,860.82 (2002), 4,656.58 (2001), 4,474.15 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Azerbaijan

Telephones - main lines in use: 923,800 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 870,000 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: inadequate; requires considerable expansion and modernization; teledensity of 10 main lines per 100 persons is low (2002) domestic: the majority of telephones are in Baku and other industrial centers - about 700 villages still without public telephone service; satellite service connects Baku to a modern switch in its exclave of Naxcivan international: country code - 994; the old Soviet system of cable and microwave is still serviceable; a satellite connection to Turkey enables Baku to reach about 200 additional countries, some of which are directly connected to Baku by satellite providers other than Turkey (1997)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 10, FM 17, shortwave 1 (1998)

Radios: 175,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 2 (1997)

Televisions: 170,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .az

Internet hosts: 586 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 2 (2000)

Internet users: 300,000 (2002)

Transportation Azerbaijan

Railways: total: 2,957 km broad gauge: 2,957 km 1.520-m gauge (1,278 km electrified) (2004)

Highways: total: 28,030 km paved: 25,890 km unpaved: 2,130 km (2002)

Pipelines: gas 4,451 km; oil 1,518 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Baku (Baki)

Merchant marine: total: 81 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 253,004 GRT/318,922 DWT by type: cargo 26, passenger 2, passenger/cargo 8, petroleum tanker 41, roll on/roll off 2, specialized tanker 2 registered in other countries: 3 (2005)

Airports: 50 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 27 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 6 1,524 to 2,437 m: 15 914 to 1,523 m: 3 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 23 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 6 under 914 m: 15 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 2 (2004 est.)

Military Azerbaijan

Military branches: Army, Navy, Air and Air Defense Forces

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service; law passed December 2001 raises maximum conscription age from 28 to 35 (December 2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 1,961,973 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 1,314,955 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 82,358 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $121 million (FY99)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 2.6% (FY99)

Transnational Issues Azerbaijan

Disputes - international: Armenia supports ethnic Armenian secessionists in Nagorno-Karabakh and since the early 1990s has militarily occupied 16% of Azerbaijan - Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) continues to mediate dispute; over 800,000 mostly ethnic Azerbaijanis were driven from the occupied lands and Armenia; about 230,000 ethnic Armenians were driven from their homes in Azerbaijan into Armenia; Azerbaijan seeks transit route through Armenia to connect to Naxcivan exclave; Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, and Russia ratify Caspian seabed delimitation treaties based on equidistance, while Iran continues to insist on an even one-fifth allocation and challenges Azerbaijan's hydrocarbon exploration in disputed waters; bilateral talks continue with Turkmenistan on dividing the seabed and contested oilfields in the middle of the Caspian; Azerbaijan and Georgia cannot resolve the alignment of their boundary at certain crossing areas

Refugees and internally displaced persons: IDPs: 571,000 (conflict with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh) (2004)

Illicit drugs: limited illicit cultivation of cannabis and opium poppy, mostly for CIS consumption; small government eradication program; transit point for Southwest Asian opiates bound for Russia and to a lesser extent the rest of Europe

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Bahamas, The

Introduction Bahamas, The

Background: Arawak Indians inhabited the islands when Christopher Columbus first set foot in the New World on San Salvador in 1492. British settlement of the islands began in 1647; the islands became a colony in 1783. Since attaining independence from the UK in 1973, The Bahamas have prospered through tourism and international banking and investment management. Because of its geography, the country is a major transshipment point for illegal drugs, particularly shipments to the US, and its territory is used for smuggling illegal migrants into the US.

Geography Bahamas, The

Location: Caribbean, chain of islands in the North Atlantic Ocean, southeast of Florida, northeast of Cuba

Geographic coordinates: 24 15 N, 76 00 W

Map references: Central America and the Caribbean

Area: total: 13,940 sq km land: 10,070 sq km water: 3,870 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Connecticut

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 3,542 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical marine; moderated by warm waters of Gulf Stream

Terrain: long, flat coral formations with some low rounded hills

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Mount Alvernia, on Cat Island 63 m

Natural resources: salt, aragonite, timber, arable land

Land use: arable land: 0.8% permanent crops: 0.4% other: 98.8% (2001)

Irrigated land: NA

Natural hazards: hurricanes and other tropical storms cause extensive flood and wind damage

Environment - current issues: coral reef decay; solid waste disposal

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: strategic location adjacent to US and Cuba; extensive island chain of which 30 are inhabited

People Bahamas, The

Population: 301,790 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 27.9% (male 42,142/female 42,096) 15-64 years: 65.9% (male 97,865/female 101,047) 65 years and over: 6.2% (male 7,616/female 11,024) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 27.55 years male: 26.78 years female: 28.34 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.67% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 17.87 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 8.97 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -2.18 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.02 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.97 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.69 male(s)/female total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 25.21 deaths/1,000 live births male: 31.02 deaths/1,000 live births female: 19.28 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 65.54 years male: 62.11 years female: 69.04 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.2 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 3% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 5,600 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 200 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Bahamian(s) adjective: Bahamian

Ethnic groups: black 85%, white 12%, Asian and Hispanic 3%

Religions: Baptist 35.4%, Anglican 15.1%, Roman Catholic 13.5%, Pentecostal 8.1%, Church of God 4.8%, Methodist 4.2%, other Christian 15.2%, none or unspecified 2.9%, other 0.8% (2000 census)

Languages: English (official), Creole (among Haitian immigrants)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 95.6% male: 94.7% female: 96.5% (2003 est.)

Government Bahamas, The

Country name: conventional long form: Commonwealth of The Bahamas conventional short form: The Bahamas

Government type: constitutional parliamentary democracy

Capital: Nassau

Administrative divisions: 21 districts; Acklins and Crooked Islands, Bimini, Cat Island, Exuma, Freeport, Fresh Creek, Governor's Harbour, Green Turtle Cay, Harbour Island, High Rock, Inagua, Kemps Bay, Long Island, Marsh Harbour, Mayaguana, New Providence, Nichollstown and Berry Islands, Ragged Island, Rock Sound, Sandy Point, San Salvador and Rum Cay

Independence: 10 July 1973 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day, 10 July (1973)

Constitution: 10 July 1973

Legal system: based on English common law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor General Dame Ivy DUMONT (since NA May 2002) head of government: Prime Minister Perry CHRISTIE (since 3 May 2002) and Deputy Prime Minister Cynthia PRATT (since 7 May 2002) cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the governor general on the prime minister's recommendation elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; governor general appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the governor general; the prime minister recommends the deputy prime minister

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (16-member body appointed by the governor general upon the advice of the prime minister and the opposition leader for five-year terms) and the House of Assembly (40 seats; members elected by direct popular vote to serve five-year terms); the government may dissolve the parliament and call elections at any time elections: last held 1 May 2002 (next to be held by May 2007) election results: percent of vote by party - PLP 50.8%, FNM 41.1%, independents 5.2%; seats by party - PLP 29, FNM 7, independents 4

Judicial branch: Supreme Court; Court of Appeal; magistrates courts

Political parties and leaders: Free National Movement or FNM [Tommy TURNQUEST]; Progressive Liberal Party or PLP [Perry CHRISTIE]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ACP, C, Caricom, CDB, FAO, G-77, IADB, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOM, IOC, ITU, LAES, MIGA, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW (signatory), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO (observer)

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Joshua SEARS chancery: 2220 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 319-2660 FAX: [1] (202) 319-2668 consulate(s) general: Miami and New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador John D. ROOD embassy: 42 Queen Street, Nassau mailing address: local or express mail address: P. O. Box N-8197, Nassau; Department of State, 3370 Nassau Place, Washington, DC 20521-3370 telephone: [1] (242) 322-1181, 328-2206 (after hours) FAX: [1] (242) 356-0222

Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of aquamarine (top), gold, and aquamarine, with a black equilateral triangle based on the hoist side

Economy Bahamas, The

Economy - overview: The Bahamas is a stable, developing nation with an economy heavily dependent on tourism and offshore banking. Tourism alone accounts for more than 60% of GDP and directly or indirectly employs half of the archipelago's labor force. Steady growth in tourism receipts and a boom in construction of new hotels, resorts, and residences had led to solid GDP growth in recent years, but the slowdown in the US economy and the attacks of 11 September 2001 held back growth in these sectors in 2001-03. Financial services constitute the second-most important sector of the Bahamian economy, accounting for about 15% of GDP. However, since December 2000, when the government enacted new regulations on the financial sector, many international businesses have left The Bahamas. Manufacturing and agriculture together contribute approximately a tenth of GDP and show little growth, despite government incentives aimed at those sectors. Overall growth prospects in the short run rest heavily on the fortunes of the tourism sector, which depends on growth in the US, the source of more than 80% of the visitors. In addition to tourism and banking, the government supports the development of a "third pillar," e-commerce.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $5.295 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 3% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $17,700 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 3% industry: 7% services: 90% (2001 est.)

Labor force: 156,000 (1999)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 5%, industry 5%, tourism 50%, other services 40% (1999 est.)

Unemployment rate: 10.2% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: 27% (2000)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1.2% (year ending September 2004)

Budget: revenues: $1 billion expenditures: $1 billion, including capital expenditures of $106.7 million (FY03/04)

Agriculture - products: citrus, vegetables; poultry

Industries: tourism, banking, cement, oil transshipment, salt, rum, aragonite, pharmaceuticals, spiral-welded steel pipe

Industrial production growth rate: NA

Electricity - production: 1.716 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 1.596 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 23,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: transhipments of 29,000 bbl/day (2003)

Oil - imports: NA

Exports: $636 million (2003 est.)

Exports - commodities: mineral products and salt, animal products, rum, chemicals; fruit and vegetables

Exports - partners: US 40.2%, Poland 13.3%, Spain 11.6%, Germany 5.9%, France 4.3% (2004)

Imports: $1.63 billion (2003)

Imports - commodities: machinery and transport equipment, manufactures, chemicals, mineral fuels; food and live animals

Imports - partners: US 22.4%, South Korea 18.9%, Brazil 9.2%, Japan 7.9%, Italy 7.8%, Venezuela 6.6% (2004)

Debt - external: $308.5 million (2002)

Economic aid - recipient: $9.8 million (1995)

Currency (code): Bahamian dollar (BSD)

Currency code: BSD

Exchange rates: Bahamian dollars per US dollar - 1 (2004), 1 (2003), 1 (2002), 1 (2001), 1 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June

Communications Bahamas, The

Telephones - main lines in use: 131,700 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 121,800 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: modern facilities domestic: totally automatic system; highly developed international: country code - 1-242; tropospheric scatter and submarine cable to Florida; 3 coaxial submarine cables; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (1997)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 3, FM 5, shortwave 0 (2004)

Radios: 215,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 2 (2004)

Televisions: 67,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .bs

Internet hosts: 302 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 19 (2000)

Internet users: 84,000 (2003)

Transportation Bahamas, The

Highways: total: 2,693 km paved: 1,546 km unpaved: 1,147 km (1999 est.)

Ports and harbors: Freeport, Nassau, South Riding Point

Merchant marine: total: 1,119 by type: barge carrier 2, bulk carrier 183, cargo 259, chemical tanker 54, combination ore/oil 17, container 74, liquefied gas 28, livestock carrier 2, passenger 116, passenger/cargo 40, petroleum tanker 168, refrigerated cargo 130, roll on/roll off 20, specialized tanker 2, vehicle carrier 24 foreign-owned: 968 (Angola 4, Australia 4, Belgium 17, Canada 9, China 3, Croatia 1, Cuba 1, Cyprus 13, Denmark 18, Estonia 1, Finland 7, France 28, Germany 15, Greece 194, Hong Kong 11, Indonesia 2, Ireland 1, Israel 1, Italy 7, Japan 49, Jordan 2, Kenya 1, Latvia 1, Malaysia 12, Monaco 15, Netherlands 24, New Zealand 1, Nigeria 2, Norway 229, Poland 13, Reunion 1, Russia 2, Saudi Arabia 12, Serbia & Montenegro 2, Singapore 11, Slovenia 1, South Korea 1, Spain 6, Sweden 9, Switzerland 4, Thailand 1, Trinidad & Tobago 2, Turkey 7, UAE 12, United Kingdom 55, United States 154, Uruguay 2) registered in other countries: 35 (2005)

Airports: 63 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 29 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 3 1,524 to 2,437 m: 14 914 to 1,523 m: 9 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 34 1,524 to 2,437 m: 3 914 to 1,523 m: 10 under 914 m: 21 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Bahamas, The

Military branches: Royal Bahamaian Defense Force (naval forces) (2004)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age (est.); no conscription (2001)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: NA

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: NA

Transnational Issues Bahamas, The

Disputes - international: have not been able to agree on the alignment of a maritime boundary with the US; continues to monitor and interdict Haitian refugees fleeing economic privation and political instability

Illicit drugs: transshipment point for cocaine and marijuana bound for US and Europe; offshore financial center

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Bahrain

Introduction Bahrain

Background: Bahrain's small size and central location among Persian Gulf countries require it to play a delicate balancing act in foreign affairs among its larger neighbors. Facing declining oil reserves, Bahrain has turned to petroleum processing and refining and has transformed itself into an international banking center. The new amir, installed in 1999, has pushed economic and political reforms and has worked to improve relations with the Shi'a community. In February 2001, Bahraini voters approved a referendum on the National Action Charter - the centerpiece of the amir's political liberalization program. In February 2002, Amir HAMAD bin Isa Al Khalifa proclaimed himself king. In October 2002, Bahrainis elected members of the lower house of Bahrain's reconstituted bicameral legislature, the National Assembly.

Geography Bahrain

Location: Middle East, archipelago in the Persian Gulf, east of Saudi Arabia

Geographic coordinates: 26 00 N, 50 33 E

Map references: Middle East

Area: total: 665 sq km land: 665 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: 3.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 161 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm continental shelf: extending to boundaries to be determined

Climate: arid; mild, pleasant winters; very hot, humid summers

Terrain: mostly low desert plain rising gently to low central escarpment

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Persian Gulf 0 m highest point: Jabal ad Dukhan 122 m

Natural resources: oil, associated and nonassociated natural gas, fish, pearls

Land use: arable land: 2.82% permanent crops: 5.63% other: 91.55% (2001)

Irrigated land: 50 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: periodic droughts; dust storms

Environment - current issues: desertification resulting from the degradation of limited arable land, periods of drought, and dust storms; coastal degradation (damage to coastlines, coral reefs, and sea vegetation) resulting from oil spills and other discharges from large tankers, oil refineries, and distribution stations; lack of freshwater resources, groundwater and seawater are the only sources for all water needs

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: close to primary Middle Eastern petroleum sources; strategic location in Persian Gulf, through which much of the Western world's petroleum must transit to reach open ocean

People Bahrain

Population: 688,345 note: includes 235,108 non-nationals (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 27.8% (male 96,807/female 94,863) 15-64 years: 68.7% (male 275,792/female 197,424) 65 years and over: 3.4% (male 12,078/female 11,381) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 29.19 years male: 32.16 years female: 25.54 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.51% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 18.1 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 4.08 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 1.04 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.4 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 1.06 male(s)/female total population: 1.27 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 17.27 deaths/1,000 live births male: 20.17 deaths/1,000 live births female: 14.28 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 74.23 years male: 71.76 years female: 76.78 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.63 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.2% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: less than 600 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 200 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Bahraini(s) adjective: Bahraini

Ethnic groups: Bahraini 62.4%, non-Bahraini 37.6% (2001 census)

Religions: Muslim (Shi'a and Sunni) 81.2%, Christian 9%, other 9.8% (2001 census)

Languages: Arabic, English, Farsi, Urdu

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 89.1% male: 91.9% female: 85% (2003 est.)

Government Bahrain

Country name: conventional long form: Kingdom of Bahrain conventional short form: Bahrain local long form: Mamlakat al Bahrayn local short form: Al Bahrayn former: Dilmun

Government type: constitutional hereditary monarchy

Capital: Manama

Administrative divisions: 12 municipalities (manatiq, singular - mintaqah); Al Hadd, Al Manamah, Al Mintaqah al Gharbiyah, Al Mintaqah al Wusta, Al Mintaqah ash Shamaliyah, Al Muharraq, Ar Rifa' wa al Mintaqah al Janubiyah, Jidd Hafs, Madinat Hamad, Madinat 'Isa, Juzur Hawar, Sitrah note: all municipalities administered from Manama

Independence: 15 August 1971 (from UK)

National holiday: National Day, 16 December (1971); note - 15 August 1971 is the date of independence from the UK, 16 December 1971 is the date of independence from British protection

Constitution: new constitution 14 February 2002

Legal system: based on Islamic law and English common law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: King HAMAD bin Isa al-Khalifa (since 6 March 1999); Heir Apparent Crown Prince SALMAN bin Hamad (son of the monarch, born 21 October 1969) head of government: Prime Minister KHALIFA bin Salman al-Khalifa (since NA 1971) cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the monarch elections: none; the monarchy is hereditary; prime minister appointed by the monarch

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consists of Shura Council (40 members appointed by the King) and House of Deputies (40 members directly elected to serve four-year terms) elections: House of Deputies - last held 31 October 2002 (next election to be held NA 2006) election results: House of Deputies - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - independents 21, Sunni Islamists 9, other 10 note: first elections since 7 December 1973; unicameral National Assembly dissolved 26 August 1975; National Action Charter created bicameral legislature on 23 December 2000; approved by referendum 14 February 2001; first legislative session of Parliament held on 25 December 2002

Judicial branch: High Civil Appeals Court

Political parties and leaders: political parties prohibited but politically oriented societies are allowed

Political pressure groups and leaders: Shi'a activists fomented unrest sporadically in 1994-97, demanding the return of an elected National Assembly and an end to unemployment; several small, clandestine leftist and Islamic fundamentalist groups are active

International organization participation: ABEDA, AFESD, AMF, ESCWA, FAO, G-77, GCC, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt (signatory), ICRM, IDB, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, LAS, MIGA, NAM, OAPEC, OIC, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Nasir al-BALUSHI chancery: 3502 International Drive NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 342-1111 FAX: [1] (202) 362-2192 consulate(s) general: New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador William T. MONROE embassy: Building #979, Road 3119 (next to Al-Ahli Sports Club), Block 331, Zinj District, Manama mailing address: American Embassy Manama, PSC 451, FPO AE 09834-5100; international mail: American Embassy, Box 26431, Manama telephone: [973] 1724-2700 FAX: [973] 1725-6242 (consular)

Flag description: red, the traditional color for flags of Persian Gulf states, with a white serrated band (five white points) on the hoist side; the five points represent the five pillars of Islam

Economy Bahrain

Economy - overview: In well-to-do Bahrain, petroleum production and refining account for about 60% of export receipts, 60% of government revenues, and 30% of GDP. With its highly developed communication and transport facilities, Bahrain is home to numerous multinational firms with business in the Gulf. A large share of exports consist of petroleum products made from refining imported crude. Construction proceeds on several major industrial projects. Unemployment, especially among the young, and the depletion of oil and underground water resources are major long-term economic problems. In September 2004 Bahrain signed a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the United States - the first such agreement undertaken by a Gulf state. Both countries must ratify the FTA before it is enforced.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $13.01 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 5.6% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $19,200 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 0.7% industry: 41% services: 58.4% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 370,000 note: 44% of the population in the 15-64 age group is non-national (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 1%, industry, commerce, and services 79%, government 20% (1997 est.)

Unemployment rate: 15% (1998 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.1% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 12.8% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $3.825 billion expenditures: $3.262 billion, including capital expenditures of $700 million (2004 est.)

Public debt: 63.8% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: fruit, vegetables; poultry, dairy products; shrimp, fish

Industries: petroleum processing and refining, aluminum smelting, iron pelletization, fertilizers, offshore banking, ship repairing; tourism

Industrial production growth rate: 2% (2000 est.)

Electricity - production: 6.86 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 6.379 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 44,000 bbl/day (2003)

Oil - consumption: 40,000 bbl/day (2003 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 126 million bbl (2004 est.)

Natural gas - production: 32.7 billion cu m (2002 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 32.7 billion cu m (2002 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2002 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2002 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 46 billion cu m (2004)

Current account balance: $586.1 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $8.205 billion (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: petroleum and petroleum products, aluminum, textiles

Exports - partners: Saudi Arabia 3%, US 2.9%, UAE 2.2% (2004)

Imports: $5.87 billion (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: crude oil, machinery, chemicals

Imports - partners: Saudi Arabia 32.4%, Japan 7.3%, Germany 6.1%, US 5.6%, UK 5.4%, France 4.8% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $2.141 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $6.215 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $150 million; note - $50 million annually since 1992 from each of Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Kuwait (2002)

Currency (code): Bahraini dinar (BHD)

Currency code: BHD

Exchange rates: Bahraini dinars per US dollar - 0.376 (2004), 0.376 (2003), 0.376 (2002), 0.376 (2001), 0.376 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Bahrain

Telephones - main lines in use: 185,800 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 443,100 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: modern system domestic: modern fiber-optic integrated services; digital network with rapidly growing use of mobile cellular telephones international: country code - 973; tropospheric scatter to Qatar and UAE; microwave radio relay to Saudi Arabia; submarine cable to Qatar, UAE, and Saudi Arabia; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean) and 1 Arabsat (1997)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 2, FM 3, shortwave 0 (1998)

Radios: 338,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 4 (1997)

Televisions: 275,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .bh

Internet hosts: 1,334 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)

Internet users: 195,700 (2003)

Transportation Bahrain

Highways: total: 3,459 km paved: 2,653 km unpaved: 806 km (2002)

Pipelines: gas 20 km; oil 53 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Mina' Salman, Sitrah

Merchant marine: total: 8 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 219,083 GRT/312,638 DWT by type: bulk carrier 3, cargo 2, container 2, petroleum tanker 1 foreign-owned: 2 (Kuwait 2) (2005)

Airports: 4 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 3 over 3,047 m: 2 1524 to 2437 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Bahrain

Military branches: Bahrain Defense Forces (BDF): Ground Force (includes Air Defense), Navy, Air Force, National Guard

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 202,126 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 161,372 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 6,013 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $628.9 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 6.3% (2004)

Transnational Issues Bahrain

Disputes - international: none

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Baker Island

Introduction Baker Island

Background: The US took possession of the island in 1857, and its guano deposits were mined by US and British companies during the second half of the 19th century. In 1935, a short-lived attempt at colonization was begun on this island - as well as on nearby Howland Island - but was disrupted by World War II and thereafter abandoned. Presently the island is a National Wildlife Refuge run by the US Department of the Interior; a day beacon is situated near the middle of the west coast.

Geography Baker Island

Location: Oceania, atoll in the North Pacific Ocean, about half way between Hawaii and Australia

Geographic coordinates: 0 13 N, 176 31 W

Map references: Oceania

Area: total: 1.4 sq km land: 1.4 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: about 2.5 times the size of The Mall in Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 4.8 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate: equatorial; scant rainfall, constant wind, burning sun

Terrain: low, nearly level coral island surrounded by a narrow fringing reef

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m highest point: unnamed location 8 m

Natural resources: guano (deposits worked until 1891), terrestrial and aquatic wildlife

Land use: arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% (2001)

Irrigated land: 0 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: the narrow fringing reef surrounding the island can be a maritime hazard

Environment - current issues: no natural fresh water resources

Geography - note: treeless, sparse, and scattered vegetation consisting of grasses, prostrate vines, and low growing shrubs; primarily a nesting, roosting, and foraging habitat for seabirds, shorebirds, and marine wildlife

People Baker Island

Population: uninhabited note: American civilians evacuated in 1942 after Japanese air and naval attacks during World War II; occupied by US military during World War II, but abandoned after the war; public entry is by special-use permit from US Fish and Wildlife Service only and generally restricted to scientists and educators; a cemetery and remnants of structures from early settlement are located near the middle of the west coast; visited annually by US Fish and Wildlife Service (2005 est.)

Government Baker Island

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Baker Island

Dependency status: unincorporated territory of the US; administered from Washington, DC, by the Fish and Wildlife Service of the US Department of the Interior as part of the National Wildlife Refuge system

Legal system: the laws of the US, where applicable, apply

Flag description: the flag of the US is used

Economy Baker Island

Economy - overview: no economic activity

Transportation Baker Island

Ports and harbors: none; offshore anchorage only; note - there is one small boat landing area along the middle of the west coast

Airports: 1 abandoned World War II runway of 1,665 m, completely covered with vegetation and unusable (2004 est.)

Transportation - note: there is a day beacon near the middle of the west coast

Military Baker Island

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of the US; visited annually by the US Coast Guard

Transnational Issues Baker Island

Disputes - international: none

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Bangladesh

Introduction Bangladesh

Background: Bangladesh came into existence in 1971 when Bengali East Pakistan seceded from its union with West Pakistan. About a third of this extremely poor country floods annually during the monsoon rainy season, hampering economic development.

Geography Bangladesh

Location: Southern Asia, bordering the Bay of Bengal, between Burma and India

Geographic coordinates: 24 00 N, 90 00 E

Map references: Asia

Area: total: 144,000 sq km land: 133,910 sq km water: 10,090 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Iowa

Land boundaries: total: 4,246 km border countries: Burma 193 km, India 4,053 km

Coastline: 580 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 18 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: up to the outer limits of the continental margin

Climate: tropical; mild winter (October to March); hot, humid summer (March to June); humid, warm rainy monsoon (June to October)

Terrain: mostly flat alluvial plain; hilly in southeast

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m highest point: Keokradong 1,230 m

Natural resources: natural gas, arable land, timber, coal

Land use: arable land: 62.11% permanent crops: 3.07% other: 34.82% (2001)

Irrigated land: 38,440 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: droughts, cyclones; much of the country routinely inundated during the summer monsoon season

Environment - current issues: many people are landless and forced to live on and cultivate flood-prone land; water-borne diseases prevalent in surface water; water pollution, especially of fishing areas, results from the use of commercial pesticides; ground water contaminated by naturally occurring arsenic; intermittent water shortages because of falling water tables in the northern and central parts of the country; soil degradation and erosion; deforestation; severe overpopulation

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: most of the country is situated on deltas of large rivers flowing from the Himalayas: the Ganges unites with the Jamuna (main channel of the Brahmaputra) and later joins the Meghna to eventually empty into the Bay of Bengal

People Bangladesh

Population: 144,319,628 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 33.1% (male 24,590,207/female 23,162,420) 15-64 years: 63.5% (male 46,764,824/female 44,868,733) 65 years and over: 3.4% (male 2,650,683/female 2,282,761) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 21.87 years male: 21.88 years female: 21.85 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.09% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 30.01 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 8.4 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.69 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 1.16 male(s)/female total population: 1.05 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 62.6 deaths/1,000 live births male: 63.65 deaths/1,000 live births female: 61.48 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 62.08 years male: 62.13 years female: 62.02 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3.13 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: less than 0.1% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 13,000 (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 650 (2001 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A and E, and typhoid fever vectorborne diseases: dengue fever and malaria are high risks in some locations water contact disease: leptospirosis animal contact disease: rabies (2004)

Nationality: noun: Bangladeshi(s) adjective: Bangladeshi

Ethnic groups: Bengali 98%, tribal groups, non-Bengali Muslims (1998)

Religions: Muslim 83%, Hindu 16%, other 1% (1998)

Languages: Bangla (official, also known as Bengali), English

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 43.1% male: 53.9% female: 31.8% (2003 est.)

Government Bangladesh

Country name: conventional long form: People's Republic of Bangladesh conventional short form: Bangladesh former: East Pakistan

Government type: parliamentary democracy

Capital: Dhaka

Administrative divisions: 6 divisions; Barisal, Chittagong, Dhaka, Khulna, Rajshahi, and Sylhet

Independence: 16 December 1971 (from West Pakistan); note - 26 March 1971 is the date of independence from West Pakistan, 16 December 1971 is known as Victory Day and commemorates the official creation of the state of Bangladesh

National holiday: Independence Day, 26 March (1971); note - 26 March 1971 is the date of independence from West Pakistan, 16 December 1971 is Victory Day and commemorates the official creation of the state of Bangladesh

Constitution: 4 November 1972, effective 16 December 1972; suspended following coup of 24 March 1982, restored 10 November 1986; amended many times

Legal system: based on English common law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Iajuddin AHMED (since 6 September 2002); note - the president's duties are normally ceremonial, but with the 13th amendment to the constitution ("Caretaker Government Amendment"), the president's role becomes significant at times when Parliament is dissolved and a caretaker government is installed - at presidential direction - to supervise the elections head of government: Prime Minister Khaleda ZIA (since 10 October 2001) cabinet: Cabinet selected by the prime minister and appointed by the president elections: president elected by National Parliament for a five-year term; election scheduled for 16 September 2002 was not held since Iajuddin AHMED was the only presidential candidate; he was sworn in on 6 September 2002 (next election to be held by NA 2007); following legislative elections, the leader of the party that wins the most seats is usually appointed prime minister by the president election results: Iajuddin AHMED declared by the Election Commission elected unopposed as president; percent of National Parliament vote - NA

Legislative branch: unicameral National Parliament or Jatiya Sangsad; 300 seats elected by popular vote from single territorial constituencies (the constitutional amendment reserving 30 seats for women over and above the 300 regular parliament seats expired in May 2001); members serve five-year terms elections: last held 1 October 2001 (next to be held before October 2006) election results: percent of vote by party - BNP and alliance partners 47%, AL 40%; seats by party - BNP 195, AL 58, JI 17, JP (Ershad faction) 14, IOJ 3, JP (Naziur) 4, other 9; note - the election of October 2001 brought a majority BNP government aligned with three other smaller parties - Jamaat-e-Islami, Islami Oikya Jote, and Jatiya Party (Manzur)

Judicial branch: Supreme Court (the chief justices and other judges are appointed by the president)

Political parties and leaders: Awami League or AL [Sheikh HASINA]; Bangladesh Communist Party or BCP [Saifuddin Ahmed MANIK]; Bangladesh Nationalist Party or BNP [Khaleda ZIA, chairperson]; Islami Oikya Jote or IOJ [Mufti Fazlul Haq AMINI]; Jamaat-e-Islami or JI [Motiur Rahman NIZAMI]; Jatiya Party or JP (Ershad faction) [Hussain Mohammad ERSHAD]; Jatiya Party (Manzur faction) [Naziur Rahman MANZUR]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: AsDB, C, CP, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MIGA, MINURSO, MONUC, NAM, OIC, ONUB, OPCW, SAARC, SACEP, UN, UNAMSIL, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMEE, UNMIK, UNMIL, UNMISET, UNOCI, UNOMIG, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Shamsher Mobin CHOWDHURY chancery: 3510 International Drive NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 244-0183 FAX: [1] (202) 244-5366 consulate(s) general: Los Angeles and New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Harry K. THOMAS, Jr. embassy: Madani Avenue, Baridhara, Dhaka 1212 mailing address: G. P. O. Box 323, Dhaka 1000 telephone: [880] (2) 885-5500 FAX: [880] (2) 882-3744

Flag description: green with a large red disk slightly to the hoist side of center; the red sun of freedom represents the blood shed to achieve independence; the green field symbolizes the lush countryside, and secondarily, the traditional color of Islam

Economy Bangladesh

Economy - overview: Despite sustained domestic and international efforts to improve economic and demographic prospects, Bangladesh remains a poor, overpopulated, and ill-governed nation. Although half of GDP is generated through the service sector, nearly two-thirds of Bangladeshis are employed in the agriculture sector, with rice as the single-most-important product. Major impediments to growth include frequent cyclones and floods, inefficient state-owned enterprises, inadequate port facilities, a rapidly growing labor force that cannot be absorbed by agriculture, delays in exploiting energy resources (natural gas), insufficient power supplies, and slow implementation of economic reforms. Economic reform is stalled in many instances by political infighting and corruption at all levels of government. Progress also has been blocked by opposition from the bureaucracy, public sector unions, and other vested interest groups. The BNP government, led by Prime Minister Khaleda ZIA, has the parliamentary strength to push through needed reforms, but the party's political will to do so has been lacking in key areas. One encouraging note: growth has been a steady 5% for the past several years.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $275.7 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 4.9% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $2,000 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 21.2% industry: 27.1% services: 51.7% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 65.49 million note: extensive export of labor to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Oman, Qatar, and Malaysia; workers' remittances estimated at $1.71 billion in 1998-99 (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 63%, industry 11%, services 26% (FY95/96)

Unemployment rate: 40% (includes underemployment) (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 45% (2004 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 3.9% highest 10%: 28.6% (1995-96 est.)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 33.6 (FY95/96)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 6% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 23.5% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $5.921 billion expenditures: $8.262 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: 43% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: rice, jute, tea, wheat, sugarcane, potatoes, tobacco, pulses, oilseeds, spices, fruit; beef, milk, poultry

Industries: cotton textiles, jute, garments, tea processing, paper newsprint, cement, chemical fertilizer, light engineering, sugar

Industrial production growth rate: 6.5% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 16.45 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 93.7% hydro: 6.3% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 15.3 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 3,581 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 71,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 28.45 million bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - production: 9.9 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 9.9 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 150.3 billion cu m (1 January 2002)

Current account balance: $216.6 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $7.478 billion (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: garments, jute and jute goods, leather, frozen fish and seafood (2001)

Exports - partners: US 22.4%, Germany 14.5%, UK 11.2%, France 6.9%, Italy 4% (2004)

Imports: $10.03 billion (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment, chemicals, iron and steel, textiles, foodstuffs, petroleum products, cement (2000)

Imports - partners: India 15.1%, China 12.5%, Singapore 7.5%, Kuwait 5.5%, Japan 5.3%, Hong Kong 4.5% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $3 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $19.97 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $1.575 billion (2000 est.)

Currency (code): taka (BDT)

Currency code: BDT

Exchange rates: taka per US dollar - 59.513 (2004), 58.15 (2003), 57.888 (2002), 55.807 (2001), 52.142 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June

Communications Bangladesh

Telephones - main lines in use: 740,000 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 1.365 million (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: totally inadequate for a modern country domestic: modernizing; introducing digital systems; trunk systems include VHF and UHF microwave radio relay links, and some fiber-optic cable in cities international: country code - 880; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Indian Ocean); international radiotelephone communications and landline service to neighboring countries (2000)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 12, FM 12, shortwave 2 (1999)

Radios: 6.15 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 15 (1999)

Televisions: 770,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .bd

Internet hosts: 1 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 10 (2000)

Internet users: 243,000 (2003)

Transportation Bangladesh

Railways: total: 2,706 km broad gauge: 884 km 1.676-m gauge narrow gauge: 1,822 km 1.000-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 207,486 km paved: 19,773 km unpaved: 187,713 km (1999)

Waterways: 8,372 km note: includes 2,575 km main cargo routes (2004)

Pipelines: gas 2,012 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Chittagong, Mongla Port

Merchant marine: total: 41 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 319,897 GRT/440,575 DWT by type: bulk carrier 2, cargo 28, container 6, passenger/cargo 1, petroleum tanker 4 foreign-owned: 10 (China 1, Singapore 9) registered in other countries: 14 (2005)

Airports: 16 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 15 over 3,047 m: 1 2,438 to 3,047 m: 3 1,524 to 2,437 m: 4 914 to 1,523 m: 1 under 914 m: 6 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Bangladesh

Military branches: Army, Navy, Air Force

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service; no conscription (2005)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 35,170,019 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 26,841,255 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $995.3 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.8% (2004)

Transnational Issues Bangladesh

Disputes - international: discussions with India remain stalled to delimit a small section of river boundary, exchange 162 miniscule enclaves in both countries, allocate divided villages, and stop illegal cross-border trade, migration, violence, and transit of terrorists through the porous border; Bangladesh protests India's attempts to fence off high-traffic sections of the porous boundary; a joint Bangladesh-India boundary inspection in 2005 revealed 92 pillars are missing; dispute with India over New Moore/South Talpatty/Purbasha Island in the Bay of Bengal deters maritime boundary delimitation; Burmese Muslim refugees strain Bangladesh's meager resources

Refugees and internally displaced persons: IDPs: 61,000 (land conflicts, religious persecution) (2004)

Illicit drugs: transit country for illegal drugs produced in neighboring countries

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Barbados

Introduction Barbados

Background: The island was uninhabited when first settled by the British in 1627. Slaves worked the sugar plantations established on the island until 1834 when slavery was abolished. The economy remained heavily dependent on sugar, rum, and molasses production through most of the 20th century. The gradual introduction of social and political reforms in the 1940s and 1950s led to complete independence from the UK in 1966. In the 1990s, tourism and manufacturing surpassed the sugar industry in economic importance.

Geography Barbados

Location: Caribbean, island in the North Atlantic Ocean, northeast of Venezuela

Geographic coordinates: 13 10 N, 59 32 W

Map references: Central America and the Caribbean

Area: total: 431 sq km land: 431 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: 2.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 97 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical; rainy season (June to October)

Terrain: relatively flat; rises gently to central highland region

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Mount Hillaby 336 m

Natural resources: petroleum, fish, natural gas

Land use: arable land: 37.21% permanent crops: 2.33% other: 60.46% (2001)

Irrigated land: 10 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: infrequent hurricanes; periodic landslides

Environment - current issues: pollution of coastal waters from waste disposal by ships; soil erosion; illegal solid waste disposal threatens contamination of aquifers

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: easternmost Caribbean island

People Barbados

Population: 279,254 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 20.6% (male 28,813/female 28,634) 15-64 years: 70.6% (male 96,590/female 100,622) 65 years and over: 8.8% (male 9,432/female 15,163) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 34.15 years male: 32.99 years female: 35.28 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.33% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 12.83 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 9.17 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.31 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.01 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.62 male(s)/female total population: 0.93 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 12.5 deaths/1,000 live births male: 14.14 deaths/1,000 live births female: 10.83 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 72.59 years male: 70.6 years female: 74.6 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.65 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 1.5% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 2,500 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 200 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Barbadian(s) or Bajan (colloquial) adjective: Barbadian or Bajan (colloquial)

Ethnic groups: black 90%, white 4%, Asian and mixed 6%

Religions: Protestant 67% (Anglican 40%, Pentecostal 8%, Methodist 7%, other 12%), Roman Catholic 4%, none 17%, other 12%

Languages: English

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over has ever attended school total population: 99.7% male: 99.7% female: 99.7% (2002 est.)

Government Barbados

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Barbados

Government type: parliamentary democracy; independent sovereign state within the Commonwealth

Capital: Bridgetown

Administrative divisions: 11 parishes; Christ Church, Saint Andrew, Saint George, Saint James, Saint John, Saint Joseph, Saint Lucy, Saint Michael, Saint Peter, Saint Philip, Saint Thomas; note - the city of Bridgetown may be given parish status

Independence: 30 November 1966 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day, 30 November (1966)

Constitution: 30 November 1966

Legal system: English common law; no judicial review of legislative acts

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor General Sir Clifford Straughn HUSBANDS (since 1 June 1996) head of government: Prime Minister Owen Seymour ARTHUR (since 7 September 1994); Deputy Prime Minister Mia MOTTLEY (since 26 May 2003) cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; governor general appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the governor general; the prime minister recommends the deputy prime minister

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (21-member body appointed by the governor general) and the House of Assembly (30 seats; members are elected by direct popular vote to serve five-year terms) elections: House of Assembly - last held 21 May 2003 (next to be held by May 2008) election results: House of Assembly - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - BLP 23, DLP 7

Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Judicature (judges are appointed by the Service Commissions for the Judicial and Legal Services)

Political parties and leaders: Barbados Labor Party or BLP [Owen ARTHUR]; Democratic Labor Party or DLP [Clyde Mascoll]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Barbados Workers Union [Leroy TROTMAN]; Clement Payne Labor Union [David COMMISSIONG]; People's Progressive Movement [Eric SEALY]; Worker's Party of Barbados [Dr. George BELLE]

International organization participation: ACP, C, Caricom, CDB, FAO, G-77, IADB, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, LAES, MIGA, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Michael Ian KING chancery: 2144 Wyoming Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 939-9200 FAX: [1] (202) 332-7467 consulate(s) general: Miami and New York consulate(s): Los Angeles

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Mary E. KRAMER embassy: Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce Building, Broad Street, Bridgetown; (courier) ALICO Building-Cheapside, Bridgetown mailing address: P. O. Box 302, Bridgetown; CMR 1014, APO AA 34055 telephone: [1] (246) 436-4950 FAX: [1] (246) 429-5246, 429-3379

Flag description: three equal vertical bands of blue (hoist side), gold, and blue with the head of a black trident centered on the gold band; the trident head represents independence and a break with the past (the colonial coat of arms contained a complete trident)

Economy Barbados

Economy - overview: Historically, the Barbadian economy had been dependent on sugarcane cultivation and related activities, but production in recent years has diversified into light industry and tourism. Offshore finance and information services are important foreign exchange earners. The government continues its efforts to reduce unemployment, to encourage direct foreign investment, and to privatize remaining state-owned enterprises. The economy contracted in 2002-03 mainly due to a decline in tourism. Growth probably was positive in 2004, as economic conditions in the US and Europe moderately improved.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $4.569 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 2.3% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $16,400 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 6% industry: 16% services: 78% (2000 est.)

Labor force: 128,500 (2001 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 10%, industry 15%, services 75% (1996 est.)

Unemployment rate: 10.7% (2003 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): -0.5% (2003 est.)

Budget: revenues: $847 million (including grants) expenditures: $886 million, including capital expenditures of NA (2000 est.)

Agriculture - products: sugarcane, vegetables, cotton

Industries: tourism, sugar, light manufacturing, component assembly for export

Industrial production growth rate: -3.2% (2000 est.)

Electricity - production: 800 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 744 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 1,271 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 10,900 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 1.254 million bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - production: 29.17 million cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 29.17 million cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 70.79 million cu m (1 January 2002)

Exports: $206 million (2002)

Exports - commodities: sugar and molasses, rum, other foods and beverages, chemicals, electrical components

Exports - partners: US 20.6%, UK 14.5%, Trinidad and Tobago 13.9%, Saint Lucia 6.9%, Jamaica 6.6%, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 5.1% (2004)

Imports: $1.039 billion (2002)

Imports - commodities: consumer goods, machinery, foodstuffs, construction materials, chemicals, fuel, electrical components

Imports - partners: US 35.2%, Trinidad and Tobago 20%, UK 5.6%, Japan 4.3% (2004)

Debt - external: $668 million (2003)

Economic aid - recipient: $9.1 million (1995)

Currency (code): Barbadian dollar (BBD)

Currency code: BBD

Exchange rates: Barbadian dollars per US dollar - 2 (2004), 2 (2003), 2 (2002), 2 (2001), 2 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Communications Barbados

Telephones - main lines in use: 134,000 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 140,000 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: NA domestic: island-wide automatic telephone system international: country code - 1-246; satellite earth stations - 4 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); tropospheric scatter to Trinidad and Saint Lucia

Radio broadcast stations: AM 2, FM 6, shortwave 0 (2004)

Radios: 237,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (plus two cable channels) (2004)

Televisions: 76,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .bb

Internet hosts: 204 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 19 (2000)

Internet users: 100,000 (2003)

Transportation Barbados

Highways: total: 1,600 km paved: 1,578 km unpaved: 22 km (2002)

Ports and harbors: Bridgetown

Merchant marine: total: 58 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 427,465 GRT/668,195 DWT by type: bulk carrier 14, cargo 31, chemical tanker 6, passenger/cargo 1, petroleum tanker 3, roll on/roll off 2, specialized tanker 1 foreign-owned: 53 (Bahamas 1, Bangladesh 1, Canada 12, Greece 11, Lebanon 2, Netherlands 1, Norway 17, UAE 1, United Kingdom 7) registered in other countries: 1 (2005)

Airports: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 1 over 3,047 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Barbados

Military branches: Royal Barbados Defense Force: Troops Command and Coast Guard (2005)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service; volunteers at earlier age with parental consent; no conscription (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 71,330 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 51,298 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: NA

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: NA

Military - note: the Royal Barbados Defense Force includes a land-based Troop Command and a small Coast Guard; the primary role of the land element is to defend the island against external aggression; the Command consists of a single, part-time battalion with a small regular cadre that is deployed throughout the island; it increasingly supports the police in patrolling the coastline to prevent smuggling and other illicit activities (2005)

Transnational Issues Barbados

Disputes - international: in 2005, Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago agreed to compulsory international arbitration that will result in a binding award challenging whether the northern limit of Trinidad and Tobago's and Venezuela's maritime boundary extends into Barbadian waters and the southern limit of Barbadian traditional fishing; joins other Caribbean states to counter Venezuela's claim that Aves Island sustains human habitation, a criterion under UNCLOS, which permits Venezuela to extend its EEZ/continental shelf over a large portion of the Caribbean Sea

Illicit drugs: one of many Caribbean transshipment points for narcotics bound for Europe and the US; offshore financial center

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Bassas da India

Introduction Bassas da India

Background: This atoll is a volcanic rock surrounded by reefs and is awash at high tide. A French possession since 1897, it was placed under the administration of a commissioner residing in Reunion in 1968.

Geography Bassas da India

Location: Southern Africa, islands in the southern Mozambique Channel, about one-half of the way from Madagascar to Mozambique

Geographic coordinates: 21 30 S, 39 50 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 0.2 sq km land: 0.2 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: about one-third the size of The Mall in Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 35.2 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical

Terrain: volcanic rock

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m highest point: unnamed location 2.4 m

Natural resources: none

Land use: arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% (all rock) (2001)

Irrigated land: 0 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: maritime hazard since it is usually under water during high tide and surrounded by reefs; subject to periodic cyclones

Environment - current issues: NA

Geography - note: the islands emerge from a circular reef that sits atop a long-extinct, submerged volcano

People Bassas da India

Population: uninhabited (July 2005 est.)

Government Bassas da India

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Bassas da India

Dependency status: possession of France; administered by the Administrateur Superieur of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands

Legal system: the laws of France, where applicable, apply

Flag description: the flag of France is used

Economy Bassas da India

Economy - overview: no economic activity

Transportation Bassas da India

Ports and harbors: none; offshore anchorage only

Military Bassas da India

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of France

Transnational Issues Bassas da India

Disputes - international: claimed by Madagascar

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Belarus

Introduction Belarus

Background: After seven decades as a constituent republic of the USSR, Belarus attained its independence in 1991. It has retained closer political and economic ties to Russia than any of the other former Soviet republics. Belarus and Russia signed a treaty on a two-state union on 8 December 1999 envisioning greater political and economic integration. Although Belarus agreed to a framework to carry out the accord, serious implementation has yet to take place. Since his election in July 1995 as the country's first president, Alexander LUKASHENKO has steadily consolidated his power through authoritarian means. Government restrictions on freedom of speech and the press, peaceful assembly, and religion continue.

Geography Belarus

Location: Eastern Europe, east of Poland

Geographic coordinates: 53 00 N, 28 00 E

Map references: Europe

Area: total: 207,600 sq km land: 207,600 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Kansas

Land boundaries: total: 2,900 km border countries: Latvia 141 km, Lithuania 502 km, Poland 407 km, Russia 959 km, Ukraine 891 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: cold winters, cool and moist summers; transitional between continental and maritime

Terrain: generally flat and contains much marshland

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Nyoman River 90 m highest point: Dzyarzhynskaya Hara 346 m

Natural resources: forests, peat deposits, small quantities of oil and natural gas, granite, dolomitic limestone, marl, chalk, sand, gravel, clay

Land use: arable land: 29.55% permanent crops: 0.6% other: 69.85% (2001)

Irrigated land: 1,150 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: NA

Environment - current issues: soil pollution from pesticide use; southern part of the country contaminated with fallout from 1986 nuclear reactor accident at Chornobyl' in northern Ukraine

Environment - international agreements: party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea

Geography - note: landlocked; glacial scouring accounts for the flatness of Belarusian terrain and for its 11,000 lakes; the country is geologically well endowed with extensive deposits of granite, dolomitic limestone, marl, chalk, sand, gravel, and clay

People Belarus

Population: 10,300,483 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 16% (male 839,292/female 804,738) 15-64 years: 69.5% (male 3,481,432/female 3,672,991) 65 years and over: 14.6% (male 498,717/female 1,003,313) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 37.03 years male: 34.32 years female: 39.7 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: -0.09% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 10.83 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 14.15 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 2.42 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.5 male(s)/female total population: 0.88 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 13.37 deaths/1,000 live births male: 14.3 deaths/1,000 live births female: 12.39 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 68.72 years male: 63.03 years female: 74.69 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.39 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.3% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 15,000 (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 1,000 (2001 est.)

Nationality: noun: Belarusian(s) adjective: Belarusian

Ethnic groups: Belarusian 81.2%, Russian 11.4%, Polish 3.9%, Ukrainian 2.4%, other 1.1% (1999 census)

Religions: Eastern Orthodox 80%, other (including Roman Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, and Muslim) 20% (1997 est.)

Languages: Belarusian, Russian, other

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 99.6% male: 99.8% female: 99.5% (2003 est.)

Government Belarus

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Belarus conventional short form: Belarus local long form: Respublika Byelarus' local short form: none former: Belorussian (Byelorussian) Soviet Socialist Republic

Government type: republic in name, although in fact a dictatorship

Capital: Minsk

Administrative divisions: 6 provinces (voblastsi, singular - voblasts') and 1 municipality* (horad); Brest, Homyel', Horad Minsk*, Hrodna, Mahilyow, Minsk, Vitsyebsk note: administrative divisions have the same names as their administrative centers

Independence: 25 August 1991 (from Soviet Union)

National holiday: Independence Day, 3 July (1944); note - 3 July 1944 was the date Minsk was liberated from German troops, 25 August 1991 was the date of independence from the Soviet Union

Constitution: 15 March 1994; revised by national referendum of 24 November 1996 giving the presidency greatly expanded powers and became effective 27 November 1996; revised again 17 October 2004 removing presidential term limits

Legal system: based on civil law system

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Aleksandr LUKASHENKO (since 20 July 1994) head of government: Prime Minister Sergei SIDORSKY (since 19 December 2003); First Deputy Prime Minister Vladimir SEMASHKO (since December 2003) cabinet: Council of Ministers elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; first election took place 23 June and 10 July 1994; according to the 1994 constitution, the next election should have been held in 1999, however LUKASHENKO extended his term to 2001 via a November 1996 referendum; new election held 9 September 2001; October 2004 referendum ended presidential term limits allowing president to run for a third term in September 2006; prime minister and deputy prime ministers appointed by the president election results: Aleksandr LUKASHENKO reelected president; percent of vote - Aleksandr LUKASHENKO 75.6%, Vladimir GONCHARIK 15.4%

Legislative branch: bicameral National Assembly or Natsionalnoye Sobranie consists of the Council of the Republic or Soviet Respubliki (64 seats; 56 members elected by regional councils and 8 members appointed by the president, all for 4-year terms) and the Chamber of Representatives or Palata Predstaviteley (110 seats; members elected by universal adult suffrage to serve 4-year terms) elections: last held 18 March and 1 April 2001 and 17 and 31 October 2004; international observers widely denounced the October 2004 elections as flawed and undemocratic, based on massive government falsification; pro-Lukashenko candidates won every seat, after many opposition candidates were disqualified for technical reasons election results: Soviet Respubliki - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - NA; Palata Predstaviteley - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - NA

Judicial branch: Supreme Court (judges are appointed by the president); Constitutional Court (half of the judges appointed by the president and half appointed by the Chamber of Representatives)

Political parties and leaders: Pro-government parties: Agrarian Party or AP [leader NA]; Belarusian Communist Party or KPB [leader NA]; Belarusian Patriotic Movement (Belarusian Patriotic Party) or BPR [Anatoliy BARANKEVICH, chairman]; Liberal Democratic Party of Belarus [Sergei GAYDUKEVICH]; Social-Sports Party [leader NA]; Opposition parties: Belarusian Popular Front or BNF [Vintsuk VYACHORKA]; Belarusian Social-Democrat Party Narodnaya Gromada or BSDP NG [Nikolay STATKEVICH, chairman]; Belarusian Social-Democratic Party Hromada [Stanislav SHUSHKEVICH, chairman]; United Civic Party or UCP [Anatol LEBEDKO]; Party of Communists Belarusian or PKB [Sergei KALYAKIN, chairman]; Women's Party "Nadezhda" [Valentina MATUSEVICH, chairperson] note: the opposition Belarusian Party of Labor [Aleksandr BUKHVOSTOV] was liquidated in August 2004, but remains active

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: CEI, CIS, EAPC, EBRD, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO, ITU, MIGA, NAM, NSG, OPCW, OSCE, PCA, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO (observer)

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Mikhail KHVOSTOV chancery: 1619 New Hampshire Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20009 telephone: [1] (202) 986-1604 FAX: [1] (202) 986-1805 consulate(s) general: New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador George A. KROL embassy: 46 Starovilenskaya St., Minsk 220002 mailing address: PSC 78, Box B Minsk, APO 09723 telephone: [375] (17) 210-12-83, 217-7347, 217-7348 FAX: [375] (17) 234-7853

Flag description: red horizontal band (top) and green horizontal band one-half the width of the red band; a white vertical stripe on the hoist side bears Belarusian national ornamention in red

Economy Belarus

Economy - overview: Belarus's economy in 2003-04 posted 6.1% and 6.4% growth. Still, the economy continues to be hampered by high inflation, persistent trade deficits, and ongoing rocky relations with Russia, Belarus' largest trading partner and energy supplier. Belarus has seen little structural reform since 1995, when President LUKASHENKO launched the country on the path of "market socialism." In keeping with this policy, LUKASHENKO reimposed administrative controls over prices and currency exchange rates and expanded the state's right to intervene in the management of private enterprises. In addition, businesses have been subject to pressure on the part of central and local governments, e.g., arbitrary changes in regulations, numerous rigorous inspections, retroactive application of new business regulations, and arrests of "disruptive" businessmen and factory owners. A wide range of redistributive policies has helped those at the bottom of the ladder; the Gini coefficient is among the lowest in the world. For the time being, Belarus remains self-isolated from the West and its open-market economies. Growth has been strong in recent years, despite the roadblocks in a tough, centrally directed economy and the high, but decreasing, rate of inflation. Growth has been buoyed by increased Russian demand for generally noncompetitive Belarusian goods.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $70.5 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 6.4% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $6,800 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 11% industry: 36.4% services: 52.6% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 4.305 million (31 December 2003)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 14%, industry 34.7%, services 51.3% (2003 est.)

Unemployment rate: 2% officially registered unemployed; large number of underemployed workers (2004)

Population below poverty line: 27.1% (2003 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 5.1% highest 10%: 20% (1998)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 21.7 (1998)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 17.4% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 21.8% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $3.326 billion expenditures: $3.564 billion, including capital expenditures of $180 million (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: grain, potatoes, vegetables, sugar beets, flax; beef, milk

Industries: metal-cutting machine tools, tractors, trucks, earthmovers, motorcycles, televisions, chemical fibers, fertilizer, textiles, radios, refrigerators

Industrial production growth rate: 4% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 30 billion kWh (2004)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 99.5% hydro: 0.1% nuclear: 0% other: 0.4% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 34.3 billion kWh (2004)

Electricity - exports: 800 million kWh (2004)

Electricity - imports: 3.2 billion kWh (2003)

Oil - production: 36,000 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 285,000 bbl/day (2003 est.)

Oil - exports: 14,500 bbl/day (2003 est.)

Oil - imports: 360,000 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Natural gas - production: 250 million cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 18.8 billion cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 18.5 billion cu m (2004 est.)

Current account balance: $-1.119 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $11.47 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: machinery and equipment, mineral products, chemicals, metals; textiles, foodstuffs

Exports - partners: Russia 47%, UK 8.3%, Netherlands 6.7%, Poland 5.3% (2004)

Imports: $13.57 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: mineral products, machinery and equipment, chemicals, foodstuffs, metals

Imports - partners: Russia 68.2%, Germany 6.6%, Ukraine 3.3% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $770.2 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $600 million (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $194.3 million (1995)

Currency (code): Belarusian ruble (BYB/BYR)

Currency code: BYB/BYR

Exchange rates: Belarusian rubles per US dollar - 2,160.26 (2004), 2,051.27 (2003), 1,790.92 (2002), 1,390 (2001), 876.75 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Belarus

Telephones - main lines in use: 3,071,300 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 1.118 million (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: the Ministry of Telecommunications controls all telecommunications through its carrier (a joint stock company) Beltelcom which is a monopoly domestic: local - Minsk has a digital metropolitan network and a cellular NMT-450 network; waiting lists for telephones are long; local service outside Minsk is neglected and poor; intercity - Belarus has a partly developed fiber-optic backbone system presently serving at least 13 major cities (1998); Belarus' fiber optics form synchronous digital hierarchy rings through other countries' systems; an inadequate analog system remains operational international: country code - 375; Belarus is a member of the Trans-European Line (TEL), Trans-Asia-Europe (TAE) fiber-optic line, and has access to the Trans-Siberia Line (TSL); three fiber-optic segments provide connectivity to Latvia, Poland, Russia, and Ukraine; worldwide service is available to Belarus through this infrastructure; additional analog lines to Russia; Intelsat, Eutelsat, and Intersputnik earth stations

Radio broadcast stations: AM 28, FM 37, shortwave 11 (1998)

Radios: 3.02 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 47 (plus 27 repeaters) (1995)

Televisions: 2.52 million (1997)

Internet country code: .by

Internet hosts: 5,308 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 23 (2002)

Internet users: 1,391,900 (2003)

Transportation Belarus

Railways: total: 5,512 km broad gauge: 5,497 km 1.520-m gauge (874 km electrified) standard gauge: 15 km 1.435-m (2004)

Highways: total: 79,990 km paved: 69,351 km unpaved: 10,639 km (2002)

Waterways: 2,500 km (use limited by location on perimeter of country and by shallowness) (2003)

Pipelines: gas 5,223 km; oil 2,443 km; refined products 1,686 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Mazyr

Airports: 133 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 50 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 22 1,524 to 2,437 m: 4 914 to 1,523 m: 1 under 914 m: 21 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 83 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 5 914 to 1,523 m: 11 under 914 m: 64 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Belarus

Military branches: Army, Air and Air Defense Force

Military service age and obligation: 18-27 years of age for compulsory military service; conscript service obligation - 18 months (May 2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 2,520,644 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 1,657,984 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 85,202 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $176.1 million (FY02)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.4% (FY02)

Transnational Issues Belarus

Disputes - international: 1997 boundary treaty with Ukraine remains unratified over unresolved financial claims, preventing demarcation and diminishing border security; boundary with Latvia remains undemarcated but a third of the border with Lithuania was demarcated in 2004

Illicit drugs: limited cultivation of opium poppy and cannabis, mostly for the domestic market; transshipment point for illicit drugs to and via Russia, and to the Baltics and Western Europe; a small and lightly regulated financial center; new anti-money-laundering legislation does not meet international standards; few investigations or prosecutions of money-laundering activities

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Belgium

Introduction Belgium

Background: Belgium became independent from the Netherlands in 1830 and was occupied by Germany during World Wars I and II. It has prospered in the past half century as a modern, technologically advanced European state and member of NATO and the EU. Tensions between the Dutch-speaking Flemings of the north and the French-speaking Walloons of the south have led in recent years to constitutional amendments granting these regions formal recognition and autonomy.

Geography Belgium

Location: Western Europe, bordering the North Sea, between France and the Netherlands

Geographic coordinates: 50 50 N, 4 00 E

Map references: Europe

Area: total: 30,528 sq km land: 30,278 sq km water: 250 sq km

Area - comparative: about the size of Maryland

Land boundaries: total: 1,385 km border countries: France 620 km, Germany 167 km, Luxembourg 148 km, Netherlands 450 km

Coastline: 66.5 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: geographic coordinates define outer limit continental shelf: median line with neighbors

Climate: temperate; mild winters, cool summers; rainy, humid, cloudy

Terrain: flat coastal plains in northwest, central rolling hills, rugged mountains of Ardennes Forest in southeast

Elevation extremes: lowest point: North Sea 0 m highest point: Signal de Botrange 694 m

Natural resources: construction materials, silica sand, carbonates

Land use: arable land: 23.28% permanent crops: 0.4% other: 76.32% note: includes Luxembourg (2001)

Irrigated land: 40 sq km (includes Luxembourg) (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: flooding is a threat along rivers and in areas of reclaimed coastal land, protected from the sea by concrete dikes

Environment - current issues: the environment is exposed to intense pressures from human activities: urbanization, dense transportation network, industry, extensive animal breeding and crop cultivation; air and water pollution also have repercussions for neighboring countries; uncertainties regarding federal and regional responsibilities (now resolved) have slowed progress in tackling environmental challenges

Environment - international agreements: party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants

Geography - note: crossroads of Western Europe; majority of West European capitals within 1,000 km of Brussels, the seat of both the European Union and NATO

People Belgium

Population: 10,364,388 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 16.9% (male 892,995/female 855,177) 15-64 years: 65.7% (male 3,435,282/female 3,373,917) 65 years and over: 17.4% (male 745,178/female 1,061,839) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 40.55 years male: 39.29 years female: 41.81 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.15% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 10.48 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 10.22 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 1.23 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.04 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.7 male(s)/female total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 4.68 deaths/1,000 live births male: 5.27 deaths/1,000 live births female: 4.06 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 78.62 years male: 75.44 years female: 81.94 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.64 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.2% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 10,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 100 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Belgian(s) adjective: Belgian

Ethnic groups: Fleming 58%, Walloon 31%, mixed or other 11%

Religions: Roman Catholic 75%, Protestant or other 25%

Languages: Dutch (official) 60%, French (official) 40%, German (official) less than 1%, legally bilingual (Dutch and French)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 98% male: NA% female: NA%

Government Belgium

Country name: conventional long form: Kingdom of Belgium conventional short form: Belgium local long form: Royaume de Belgique/Koninkrijk Belgie local short form: Belgique/Belgie

Government type: federal parliamentary democracy under a constitutional monarch

Capital: Brussels

Administrative divisions: 10 provinces (French: provinces, singular - province; Dutch: provincies, singular - provincie) and 3 regions* (French: regions; Dutch: gewesten); Antwerpen, Brabant Wallon, Brussels* (Bruxelles), Flanders*, Hainaut, Liege, Limburg, Luxembourg, Namur, Oost-Vlaanderen, Vlaams-Brabant, Wallonia*, West-Vlaanderen note: as a result of the 1993 constitutional revision that furthered devolution into a federal state, there are now three levels of government (federal, regional, and linguistic community) with a complex division of responsibilities

Independence: 4 October 1830 (a provisional government declares independence from the Netherlands); 21 July 1831 (King Leopold I ascends to the throne)

National holiday: 21 July (1831) ascension to the Throne of King Leopold I

Constitution: 7 February 1831; amended many times; revised 14 July 1993 to create a federal state

Legal system: civil law system influenced by English constitutional theory; judicial review of legislative acts; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branch: chief of state: King ALBERT II (since 9 August 1993); Heir Apparent Prince PHILIPPE, son of the monarch head of government: Prime Minister Guy VERHOFSTADT (since 13 July 1999) cabinet: Council of Ministers formally appointed by the monarch elections: none; the monarchy is hereditary; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the monarch and then approved by parliament note: government coalition - VLD, MR, PS, SP.A-Spirit

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consists of a Senate or Senaat in Dutch, Senat in French (71 seats; 40 members are directly elected by popular vote, 31 are indirectly elected; members serve four-year terms) and a Chamber of Deputies or Kamer van Volksvertegenwoordigers in Dutch, Chambre des Representants in French (150 seats; members are directly elected by popular vote on the basis of proportional representation to serve four-year terms) elections: Senate and Chamber of Deputies - last held 18 May 2003 (next to be held no later than May 2007) election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - SP.A-Spirit 15.5%, VLD 15.4%, CD & V 12.7%, PS 12.8%, MR 12.1%, VB 9.4%, CDH 5.6%; seats by party - SP.A-Spirit 7, VLD 7, CD & V 6, PS 6, MR 5, VB 5, CDH 2, other 2 (note - there are also 31 indirectly elected senators); Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by party - VLD 15.4%, SP.A-Spirit 14.9%, CD & V 13.3%, PS 13.0%, VB 11.6%, MR 11.4%, CDH 5.5%, Ecolo 3.1%; seats by party - VLD 25, SP.A-Spirit 23, CD & V 21, PS 25, VB 18, MR 24, CDH 8 Ecolo 4, other 2 note: as a result of the 1993 constitutional revision that furthered devolution into a federal state, there are now three levels of government (federal, regional, and linguistic community) with a complex division of responsibilities; this reality leaves six governments each with its own legislative assembly

Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Justice or Hof van Cassatie (in Dutch) or Cour de Cassation (in French) (judges are appointed for life by the Government; candidacies have to be submitted by the High Justice Council)

Political parties and leaders: Flemish parties: Christian Democrats and Flemish or CD & V [Jo VANDEURZEN]; Flemish Liberal Democrats or VLD [Bart SOMERS]; GROEN! (formerly AGALEV, Flemish Greens) [Vera DUA]; New Flemish Alliance or NVA [Bart DE WEVER]; Socialist Party.Alternative or SP.A [Caroline GENNEZ]; Spirit [Geert LAMBERT] (new party now associated with SP.A); Vlaams Belang (Flemish Interest) or VB [Frank VANHECKE] Francophone parties: Ecolo (Francophone Greens) [Jean-Michel JAVAUX, Evelyne HUYTEBROECK, Claude BROUIR]; Humanist and Democratic Center of CDH [Joelle MILQUET]; National Front or FN [Daniel FERET]; Reformist Movement or MR [Didier REYNDERS]; Socialist Party or PS [Elio DI RUPO]; other minor parties

Political pressure groups and leaders: Christian, Socialist, and Liberal Trade Unions; Federation of Belgian Industries; numerous other associations representing bankers, manufacturers, middle-class artisans, and the legal and medical professions; various organizations represent the cultural interests of Flanders and Wallonia; various peace groups such as Pax Christi and groups representing immigrants

International organization participation: ACCT, AfDB, AsDB, Australia Group, Benelux, BIS, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, EIB, EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, G- 9, G-10, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MIGA, MONUC, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, ONUB, OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMIK, UNMOGIP, UNRWA, UNTSO, UPU, WADB (nonregional), WCL, WCO, WEU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Franciskus VAN DAELE chancery: 3330 Garfield Street NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 333-6900 FAX: [1] (202) 333-3079 consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Los Angeles, and New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Tom C. KOROLOGOS embassy: Regentlaan 27 Boulevard du Regent, B-1000 Brussels mailing address: PSC 82, Box 002, APO AE 09710 telephone: [32] (2) 508-2111 FAX: [32] (2) 511-2725

Flag description: three equal vertical bands of black (hoist side), yellow, and red; the design was based on the flag of France

Economy Belgium

Economy - overview: This modern private enterprise economy has capitalized on its central geographic location, highly developed transport network, and diversified industrial and commercial base. Industry is concentrated mainly in the populous Flemish area in the north. With few natural resources, Belgium must import substantial quantities of raw materials and export a large volume of manufactures, making its economy unusually dependent on the state of world markets. Roughly three-quarters of its trade is with other EU countries. Public debt is nearly 100% of GDP. On the positive side, the government has succeeded in balancing its budget, and income distribution is relatively equal. Belgium began circulating the euro currency in January 2002. Economic growth in 2001-03 dropped sharply because of the global economic slowdown, with moderate recovery in 2004.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $316.2 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 2.6% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $30,600 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 1.3% industry: 25.7% services: 73% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 4.75 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 1.3%, industry 24.5%, services 74.2% (2003 est.)

Unemployment rate: 12% (first half, 2004)

Population below poverty line: 4% (1989 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 3.2% highest 10%: 23% (1996)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 28.7 (1996)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1.9% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 19.1% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $173.7 billion expenditures: $174.8 billion, including capital expenditures of $1.56 billion (2004 est.)

Public debt: 96.2% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: sugar beets, fresh vegetables, fruits, grain, tobacco; beef, veal, pork, milk

Industries: engineering and metal products, motor vehicle assembly, transportation equipment, scientific instruments, processed food and beverages, chemicals, basic metals, textiles, glass, petroleum

Industrial production growth rate: 3.5% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 76.58 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 38.4% hydro: 0.6% nuclear: 59.3% other: 1.8% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 78.82 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 9.1 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 16.7 billion kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 595,100 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: 450,000 bbl/day (2001)

Oil - imports: 1.042 million bbl/day (2001)

Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 15.5 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 15.4 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Current account balance: $11.4 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $255.7 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)

Exports - commodities: machinery and equipment, chemicals, diamonds, metals and metal products, foodstuffs

Exports - partners: Germany 19.9%, France 17.2%, Netherlands 11.8%, UK 8.6%, US 6.5%, Italy 5.2% (2004)

Imports: $235 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment, chemicals, diamonds, pharmaceuticals, foodstuffs, transportation equipment, oil products

Imports - partners: Germany 18.4%, Netherlands 17%, France 12.5%, UK 6.8%, Ireland 6.3%, US 5.5% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $14.45 billion (2003)

Debt - external: $28.3 billion (1999 est.)

Economic aid - donor: ODA, $1.072 billion (2002)

Currency (code): euro (EUR) note: on 1 January 1999, the European Monetary Union introduced the euro as a common currency to be used by financial institutions of member countries; on 1 January 2002, the euro became the sole currency for everyday transactions within the member countries

Currency code: EUR

Exchange rates: euros per US dollar - 0.8054 (2004), 0.886 (2003), 1.0626 (2002), 1.1175 (2001), 1.0854 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Belgium

Telephones - main lines in use: 5,120,400 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 8,135,500 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: highly developed, technologically advanced, and completely automated domestic and international telephone and telegraph facilities domestic: nationwide cellular telephone system; extensive cable network; limited microwave radio relay network international: country code - 32; 5 submarine cables; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) and 1 Eutelsat

Radio broadcast stations: FM 79, AM 7, shortwave 1 (1998)

Radios: 8.075 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 25 (plus 10 repeaters) (1997)

Televisions: 4.72 million (1997)

Internet country code: .be

Internet hosts: 166,799 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 61 (2000)

Internet users: 3.4 million (2002)

Transportation Belgium

Railways: total: 3,521 km standard gauge: 3,521 km 1.435-m gauge (2,927 km electrified) (2004)

Highways: total: 149,028 km paved: 116,540 km (including 1,729 km of expressways) unpaved: 32,488 km (2002)

Waterways: 2,043 km (1,528 km in regular commercial use) (2003)

Pipelines: gas 1,485 km; oil 158 km; refined products 535 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Antwerp, Brussels, Gent, Liege, Oostende, Zeebrugge

Merchant marine: total: 53 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 1,146,301 GRT/1,588,184 DWT by type: bulk carrier 15, cargo 2, chemical tanker 2, container 8, liquefied gas 17, petroleum tanker 9 foreign-owned: 12 (Denmark 4, France 4, Greece 4) registered in other countries: 101 (2005)

Airports: 43 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 25 over 3,047 m: 6 2,438 to 3,047 m: 8 1,524 to 2,437 m: 3 914 to 1,523 m: 1 under 914 m: 7 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 18 914 to 1,523 m: 2 under 914 m: 16 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Belgium

Military branches: Land, Naval, and Air Components (2005)

Military service age and obligation: 16 years of age for voluntary military service; women comprise some 7% of the Belgian armed forces (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 16-49: 2,436,736 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 16-49: 1,998,003 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 64,263 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $3.999 billion (2003)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.3% (2003)

Transnational Issues Belgium

Disputes - international: none

Illicit drugs: growing producer of synthetic drugs; transit point for US-bound ecstasy; source of precursor chemicals for South American cocaine processors; transshipment point for cocaine, heroin, hashish, and marijuana entering Western Europe; despite a strengthening of legislation, the country remains vulnerable to money laundering related to narcotics, automobiles, alcohol, and tobacco

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Belize

Introduction Belize

Background: Territorial disputes between the UK and Guatemala delayed the independence of Belize (formerly British Honduras) until 1981. Guatemala refused to recognize the new nation until 1992. Tourism has become the mainstay of the economy. The country remains plagued by high unemployment, growing involvement in the South American drug trade, and increasing urban crime.

Geography Belize

Location: Central America, bordering the Caribbean Sea, between Guatemala and Mexico

Geographic coordinates: 17 15 N, 88 45 W

Map references: Central America and the Caribbean

Area: total: 22,966 sq km land: 22,806 sq km water: 160 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Massachusetts

Land boundaries: total: 516 km border countries: Guatemala 266 km, Mexico 250 km

Coastline: 386 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm in the north, 3 nm in the south; note - from the mouth of the Sarstoon River to Ranguana Cay, Belize's territorial sea is 3 nm; according to Belize's Maritime Areas Act, 1992, the purpose of this limitation is to provide a framework for negotiating a definitive agreement on territorial differences with Guatemala exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical; very hot and humid; rainy season (May to November); dry season (February to May)

Terrain: flat, swampy coastal plain; low mountains in south

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m highest point: Victoria Peak 1,160 m

Natural resources: arable land potential, timber, fish, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 2.85% permanent crops: 1.71% other: 95.44% (2001)

Irrigated land: 30 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: frequent, devastating hurricanes (June to November) and coastal flooding (especially in south)

Environment - current issues: deforestation; water pollution from sewage, industrial effluents, agricultural runoff; solid and sewage waste disposal

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: only country in Central America without a coastline on the North Pacific Ocean

People Belize

Population: 279,457 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 40.1% (male 57,114/female 54,877) 15-64 years: 56.4% (male 79,694/female 77,881) 65 years and over: 3.5% (male 4,768/female 5,123) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 19.35 years male: 19.21 years female: 19.49 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.33% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 29.34 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 6.04 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.93 male(s)/female total population: 1.03 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 25.69 deaths/1,000 live births male: 28.97 deaths/1,000 live births female: 22.25 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 68.44 years male: 66.54 years female: 70.44 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3.68 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 2.4% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 3,600 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 200 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Belizean(s) adjective: Belizean

Ethnic groups: mestizo 48.7%, Creole 24.9%, Maya 10.6%, Garifuna 6.1%, other 9.7%

Religions: Roman Catholic 49.6%, Protestant 27% (Pentecostal 7.4%, Anglican 5.3%, Seventh-Day Adventist 5.2%, Mennonite 4.1%, Methodist 3.5%, Jehovah's Witnesses 1.5%), other 14%, none 9.4% (2000)

Languages: English (official), Spanish, Mayan, Garifuna (Carib), Creole

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 94.1% male: 94.1% female: 94.1% (2003 est.)

Government Belize

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Belize former: British Honduras

Government type: parliamentary democracy

Capital: Belmopan

Administrative divisions: 6 districts; Belize, Cayo, Corozal, Orange Walk, Stann Creek, Toledo

Independence: 21 September 1981 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day, 21 September (1981)

Constitution: 21 September 1981

Legal system: English law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor General Sir Colville YOUNG, Sr. (since 17 November 1993) head of government: Prime Minister Said Wilbert MUSA (since 28 August 1998); Deputy Prime Minister John BRICENO (since 1 September 1998) cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; governor general appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the governor general; prime minister recommends the deputy prime minister

Legislative branch: bicameral National Assembly consists of the Senate (12 members appointed by the governor general - six on the advice of the prime minister, three on the advice of the leader of the opposition, and one each on the advice of the Belize Council of Churches and Evangelical Association of Churches, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Belize Better Business Bureau, and the National Trade Union Congress and the Civil Society Steering Committee; members are appointed for five-year terms) and the House of Representatives (29 seats; members are elected by direct popular vote to serve five-year terms) elections: House of Representatives - last held 5 March 2003 (next to be held March 2008) election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PUP 21, UDP 8

Judicial branch: Supreme Court (the chief justice is appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister)

Political parties and leaders: People's United Party or PUP [Said MUSA]; United Democratic Party or UDP [Dean BARROW, party leader; Douglas SINGH, party chairman]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Society for the Promotion of Education and Research or SPEAR [Adele CATZIM]

International organization participation: ACP, C, Caricom, CDB, FAO, G-77, IADB, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ITU, LAES, MIGA, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Lisa M. SHOMAN chancery: 2535 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 332-9636 FAX: [1] (202) 332-6888 consulate(s) general: Los Angeles

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Russell F. FREEMAN embassy: 29 Gabourel Lane, Belize City mailing address: P. O. Box 286, Belize City telephone: [501] 227-7161 through 7163 FAX: [501] 2-30802

Flag description: blue with a narrow red stripe along the top and the bottom edges; centered is a large white disk bearing the coat of arms; the coat of arms features a shield flanked by two workers in front of a mahogany tree with the related motto SUB UMBRA FLOREO (I Flourish in the Shade) on a scroll at the bottom, all encircled by a green garland

Economy Belize

Economy - overview: In this small, essentially private enterprise economy the tourism industry is the number one foreign exchange earner followed by marine products, citrus, cane sugar, bananas, and garments. The government's expansionary monetary and fiscal policies, initiated in September 1998, led to sturdy GDP growth averaging nearly 6% in 1999-2004. Major concerns continue to be the sizable trade deficit and foreign debt. A key short-term objective remains the reduction of poverty with the help of international donors.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $1.778 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 3.5% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $6,500 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 17.7% industry: 15% services: 67.3% (2003 est.)

Labor force: 90,000 note: shortage of skilled labor and all types of technical personnel (2001 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 27%, industry 18%, services 55% (2001 est.)

Unemployment rate: 12.9% (2003)

Population below poverty line: 33% (1999 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.9% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 33.6% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $244.5 million expenditures: $300 million, including capital expenditures of $70 million (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: bananas, coca, citrus, sugar; fish, cultured shrimp; lumber; garments

Industries: garment production, food processing, tourism, construction

Industrial production growth rate: 4.6% (1999)

Electricity - production: 117 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 59.9% hydro: 40.1% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 108.8 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 5,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Current account balance: $-115 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $401.4 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: sugar, bananas, citrus, clothing, fish products, molasses, wood

Exports - partners: US 37.2%, UK 26.8%, Jamaica 4.6% (2004)

Imports: $579.9 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and transport equipment, manufactured goods; fuels, chemicals, pharmaceuticals; food, beverages, tobacco

Imports - partners: US 30.1%, Mexico 12%, Guatemala 7.4%, Cuba 7.2%, China 4.2%, Japan 4.1% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $111.1 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $1.362 billion (June 2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: NA

Currency (code): Belizean dollar (BZD)

Currency code: BZD

Exchange rates: Belizean dollars per US dollar - 2 (2004), 2 (2003), 2 (2002), 2 (2001), 2 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Communications Belize

Telephones - main lines in use: 33,300 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 60,400 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: above-average system domestic: trunk network depends primarily on microwave radio relay international: country code - 501; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 12, shortwave 0 (1998)

Radios: 133,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 2 (1997)

Televisions: 41,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .bz

Internet hosts: 2,613 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 2 (2000)

Internet users: 30,000 (2002)

Transportation Belize

Highways: total: 2,872 km paved: 488 km unpaved: 2,384 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: 825 km (navigable only by small craft) (2004)

Ports and harbors: Belize City

Merchant marine: total: 295 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 1,015,270 GRT/1,336,890 DWT by type: bulk carrier 25, cargo 207, chemical tanker 9, container 6, passenger/cargo 6, petroleum tanker 20, refrigerated cargo 17, roll on/roll off 5 foreign-owned: 142 (Australia 2, Belgium 1, China 50, Cuba 1, Cyprus 1, Estonia 9, Germany 4, Hong Kong 6, Indonesia 3, Italy 2, Japan 5, Latvia 4, Malaysia 1, Nigeria 1, Pakistan 1, Poland 2, Russia 23, Singapore 5, South Korea 6, Spain 3, Switzerland 1, Turkey 2, Ukraine 4, UAE 3, United States 2) (2005)

Airports: 43 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 5 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 2 under 914 m: 2 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 38 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 11 under 914 m: 26 (2004 est.)

Military Belize

Military branches: Belize Defense Force (BDF): Army, Maritime Wing, Air Wing, and Volunteer Guard

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service; laws allow for conscription only if volunteers are insufficient; conscription has never been implemented; volunteers typically outnumber available positions by 3:1 (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 60,750 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 41,368 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 3,209 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $18 million (2003)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 2% (2003)

Transnational Issues Belize

Disputes - international: Guatemalan squatters continue to settle in the largely uninhabited rain forests of Belize's border region; OAS is attempting to revive the 2002 failed Differendum that created a small adjustment to land boundary, a Guatemalan maritime corridor in Caribbean, joint ecological park for disputed Sapodilla Cays, and substantial US-UK financial package

Illicit drugs: major transshipment point for cocaine; small-scale illicit producer of cannabis for the international drug trade; money-laundering activity related to narcotics trafficking and offshore sector

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Benin

Introduction Benin

Background: Present day Benin was the site of Dahomey, a prominent West African kingdom that rose in the 15th century. The territory became a French Colony in 1872 and achieved independence on 1 August 1960, as the Republic of Benin. A succession of military governments ended in 1972 with the rise to power of Mathieu KEREKOU and the establishment of a government based on Marxist-Leninist principles. A move to representative government began in 1989. Two years later, free elections ushered in former Prime Minister Nicephore SOGLO as president, marking the first successful transfer of power in Africa from a dictatorship to a democracy. KEREKOU was returned to power by elections held in 1996 and 2001, though some irregularities were alleged.

Geography Benin

Location: Western Africa, bordering the Bight of Benin, between Nigeria and Togo

Geographic coordinates: 9 30 N, 2 15 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 112,620 sq km land: 110,620 sq km water: 2,000 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Pennsylvania

Land boundaries: total: 1,989 km border countries: Burkina Faso 306 km, Niger 266 km, Nigeria 773 km, Togo 644 km

Coastline: 121 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 200 nm

Climate: tropical; hot, humid in south; semiarid in north

Terrain: mostly flat to undulating plain; some hills and low mountains

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Mont Sokbaro 658 m

Natural resources: small offshore oil deposits, limestone, marble, timber

Land use: arable land: 18.08% permanent crops: 2.4% other: 79.52% (2001)

Irrigated land: 120 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: hot, dry, dusty harmattan wind may affect north from December to March

Environment - current issues: inadequate supplies of potable water; poaching threatens wildlife populations; deforestation; desertification

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: sandbanks create difficult access to a coast with no natural harbors, river mouths, or islands

People Benin

Population: 7,460,025 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 46.5% (male 1,752,243/female 1,719,458) 15-64 years: 51.2% (male 1,868,630/female 1,948,610) 65 years and over: 2.3% (male 70,367/female 100,717) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 16.56 years male: 16.12 years female: 17.01 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.82% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 41.99 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 13.76 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.7 male(s)/female total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 85 deaths/1,000 live births male: 90 deaths/1,000 live births female: 79.86 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 52.66 years male: 51.53 years female: 53.82 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 5.86 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 1.9% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 68,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 5,800 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: very high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne diseases: malaria, yellow fever, and others are high risks in some locations respiratory disease: meningococcal meningitis (2004)

Nationality: noun: Beninese (singular and plural) adjective: Beninese

Ethnic groups: African 99% (42 ethnic groups, most important being Fon, Adja, Yoruba, Bariba), Europeans 5,500

Religions: indigenous beliefs 50%, Christian 30%, Muslim 20%

Languages: French (official), Fon and Yoruba (most common vernaculars in south), tribal languages (at least six major ones in north)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 33.6% male: 46.4% female: 22.6% (2002 est.)

Government Benin

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Benin conventional short form: Benin local long form: Republique du Benin local short form: Benin former: Dahomey

Government type: republic under multiparty democratic rule; dropped Marxism-Leninism December 1989

Capital: Porto-Novo is the official capital; Cotonou is the seat of government

Administrative divisions: 12 departments; Alibori, Atakora, Atlantique, Borgou, Collines, Kouffo, Donga, Littoral, Mono, Oueme, Plateau, Zou

Independence: 1 August 1960 (from France)

National holiday: National Day, 1 August (1960)

Constitution: December 1990

Legal system: based on French civil law and customary law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Mathieu KEREKOU (since 4 April 1996); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government head of government: President Mathieu KEREKOU (since 4 April 1996); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president elections: president reelected by popular vote for a five-year term; runoff election held 22 March 2001 (next to be held March 2006) election results: Mathieu KEREKOU reelected president; percent of vote - Mathieu KEREKOU 84.1%, Bruno AMOUSSOU 15.9% note: the four top-ranking contenders following the first-round presidential elections were: Mathieu KEREKOU (incumbent) 45.4%, Nicephore SOGLO (former president) 27.1%, Adrien HOUNGBEDJI (National Assembly Speaker) 12.6%, and Bruno AMOUSSOU (Minister of State) 8.6%; the second-round balloting, originally scheduled for 18 March 2001, was postponed four days because both SOGLO and HOUNGBEDJI withdrew alleging electoral fraud; this left KEREKOU to run against his own Minister of State, AMOUSSOU, in what was termed a "friendly match"

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (83 seats; members are elected by direct popular vote to serve four-year terms) elections: last held 30 March 2003 (next to be held March 2007) election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - Presidential Movement 52, opposition (PRB, PRD, E'toile, and 5 other small parties) 31

Judicial branch: Constitutional Court or Cour Constitutionnelle; Supreme Court or Cour Supreme; High Court of Justice

Political parties and leaders: African Congress for Renewal or DUNYA [Saka SALEY]; African Movement for Democracy and Progress or MADEP [Sefou FAGBOHOUN]; Alliance of the Social Democratic Party or PSD [Bruno AMOUSSOU]; Coalition of Democratic Forces [Gatien HOUNGBEDJI]; Democratic Renewal Party or PRD [Adrien HOUNGBEDJI]; Front for Renewal and Development or FARD-ALAFIA [Jerome Sakia KINA]; Impulse for Progress and Democracy or IPD [Bertin BORNA]; Key Force or FC [leader NA]; Presidential Movement (UBF, MADEP, FC, IDP, and four small parties); Renaissance Party du Benin or PRB [Nicephore SOGLO]; The Star Alliance (Alliance E'toile) [Sacca LAFIA]; Union of Tomorrow's Benin or UBF [Bruno AMOUSSOU] note: approximately 20 additional minor parties

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, ECOWAS, Entente, FAO, FZ, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO (correspondent), ITU, MIGA, MINUSTAH, MONUC, NAM, OIC, ONUB, OPCW, UN, UN Security Council (temporary), UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNMIL, UNOCI, UPU, WADB (regional), WAEMU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Cyrille Segbe OGUIN chancery: 2124 Kalorama Road NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 232-6656 FAX: [1] (202) 265-1996

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Wayne NEILL embassy: Rue Caporal Bernard Anani, Cotonou mailing address: 01 B. P. 2012, Cotonou telephone: [229] 30-06-50 FAX: [229] 30-06-70

Flag description: two equal horizontal bands of yellow (top) and red (bottom) with a vertical green band on the hoist side

Economy Benin

Economy - overview: The economy of Benin remains underdeveloped and dependent on subsistence agriculture, cotton production, and regional trade. Growth in real output has averaged around 5% in the past six years, but rapid population growth has offset much of this increase. Inflation has subsided over the past several years. In order to raise growth still further, Benin plans to attract more foreign investment, place more emphasis on tourism, facilitate the development of new food processing systems and agricultural products, and encourage new information and communication technology. The 2001 privatization policy should continue in telecommunications, water, electricity, and agriculture in spite of initial government reluctance. The Paris Club and bilateral creditors have eased the external debt situation, while pressing for more rapid structural reforms. Benin continues to be hurt by Nigerian trade protection that bans imports of a growing list of products from Benin and elsewhere. As a result, smuggling and criminality along the Benin-Nigeria border has been on the rise.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $8.338 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 5% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,200 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 36.3% industry: 14.3% services: 49.4% (2004 est.)

Labor force: NA (1996)

Unemployment rate: NA

Population below poverty line: 33% (2001 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.8% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 19.3% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $869.4 million expenditures: $720.4 million, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: cotton, corn, cassava (tapioca), yams, beans, palm oil, peanuts, livestock (2001)

Industries: textiles, food processing, construction materials, cement (2001)

Industrial production growth rate: 8.3% (2001 est.)

Electricity - production: 285.2 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 14.2% hydro: 85.8% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 565.2 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 300 million kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 700 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 11,500 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 4.105 million bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 608.8 million cu m (1 January 2002)

Current account balance: $-159.9 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $720.9 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: cotton, crude oil, palm products, cocoa

Exports - partners: China 28.7%, India 18.4%, Ghana 6.3%, Thailand 6%, Niger 5.8%, Indonesia 4.2%, Nigeria 4.2% (2004)

Imports: $934.5 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: foodstuffs, capital goods, petroleum products

Imports - partners: China 32.2%, France 13%, Thailand 6.7%, Cote d'Ivoire 5.3% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $839.3 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $1.6 billion (2000)

Economic aid - recipient: $342.6 million (2000)

Currency (code): Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XOF); note - responsible authority is the Central Bank of the West African States

Currency code: XOF

Exchange rates: Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XOF) per US dollar - 528.29 (2004), 581.2 (2003), 696.99 (2002), 733.04 (2001), 711.98 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Benin

Telephones - main lines in use: 66,500 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 236,200 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: NA domestic: fair system of open-wire, microwave radio relay, and cellular connections international: country code - 229; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); fiber optic submarine cable (SAT-3/WASC) provides connectivity to Europe and Asia

Radio broadcast stations: AM 2, FM 9, shortwave 4 (2000)

Radios: 660,000 (2000)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (2001)

Televisions: 66,000 (2000)

Internet country code: .bj

Internet hosts: 879 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 4 (2002)

Internet users: 70,000 (2003)

Transportation Benin

Railways: total: 578 km narrow gauge: 578 km 1.000-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 6,787 km paved: 1,357 km (including 10 km of expressways) unpaved: 5,430 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: 150 km (on River Niger along northern border) (2004)

Ports and harbors: Cotonou

Airports: 5 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 4 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2004 est.)

Military Benin

Military branches: Army, Navy, Air Force

Military service age and obligation: 21 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service; in practice, volunteers may be taken at the age of 18; both sexes are eligible for military service; conscript tour of duty - 18 months (2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 21-49: 1,207,071 females age 21-49: 1,216,180 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 21-49: 670,170 females age 21-49: 630,078 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 72,841 females: 71,428 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $96.5 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 2.4% (2004)

Transnational Issues Benin

Disputes - international: two villages remain in dispute along the border with Burkina Faso; accuses Burkina Faso of moving boundary pillars; much of Benin-Niger boundary, including tripoint with Nigeria, remains undemarcated, and the states expect a ruling in 2005 from the ICJ over the disputed Niger and Mekrou River islands; a joint task force was established in 2004 that resolved disputes over and redrew the maritime and the 870-km land boundary with Nigeria, including the sovereignty over seven villages along the Okpara River; a joint boundary commission continues to resurvey the boundary with Togo to verify Benin's claim that Togo moved boundary stones

Illicit drugs: transshipment point for narcotics associated with Nigerian trafficking organizations and most commonly destined for Western Europe and the US; vulnerable to money laundering due to a poorly regulated financial infrastructure

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Bermuda

Introduction Bermuda

Background: Bermuda was first settled in 1609 by shipwrecked English colonists headed for Virginia. Tourism to the island to escape North American winters first developed in Victorian times. Tourism continues to be important to the island's economy, although international business has overtaken it in recent years. Bermuda has developed into a highly successful offshore financial center. A referendum on independence was soundly defeated in 1995.

Geography Bermuda

Location: North America, group of islands in the North Atlantic Ocean, east of South Carolina (US)

Geographic coordinates: 32 20 N, 64 45 W

Map references: North America

Area: total: 53.3 sq km land: 53.3 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: about one-third the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 103 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm

Climate: subtropical; mild, humid; gales, strong winds common in winter

Terrain: low hills separated by fertile depressions

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Town Hill 76 m

Natural resources: limestone, pleasant climate fostering tourism

Land use: arable land: 20% permanent crops: 0% other: 80% (55% developed, 45% rural/open space) (2001)

Irrigated land: NA

Natural hazards: hurricanes (June to November)

Environment - current issues: asbestos disposal; water pollution; preservation of open space; sustainable development

Geography - note: consists of about 138 coral islands and islets with ample rainfall, but no rivers or freshwater lakes; some land was leased by US Government from 1941 to 1995

People Bermuda

Population: 65,365 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 18.9% (male 6,177/female 6,154) 15-64 years: 69.2% (male 22,422/female 22,828) 65 years and over: 11.9% (male 3,378/female 4,406) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 39.76 years male: 38.78 years female: 40.58 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.64% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 11.6 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 7.63 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 2.45 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.02 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.77 male(s)/female total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 8.53 deaths/1,000 live births male: 10.14 deaths/1,000 live births female: 6.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 77.79 years male: 75.7 years female: 79.91 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.89 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Bermudian(s) adjective: Bermudian

Ethnic groups: black 54.8%, white 34.1%, mixed 6.4%, other races 4.3%, unspecified 0.4% (2000 census)

Religions: Anglican 23%, Roman Catholic 15%, African Methodist Episcopal 11%, other Protestant 18%, other 12%, unaffiliated 6%, unspecified 1%, none 14% (2000 census)

Languages: English (official), Portuguese

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 98% male: 98% female: 99% (1970 est.)

Government Bermuda

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Bermuda former: Somers Islands

Dependency status: overseas territory of the UK

Government type: parliamentary British overseas territory with internal self-government

Capital: Hamilton

Administrative divisions: 9 parishes and 2 municipalities*; Devonshire, Hamilton, Hamilton*, Paget, Pembroke, Saint George*, Saint George's, Sandys, Smith's, Southampton, Warwick

Independence: none (overseas territory of the UK)

National holiday: Bermuda Day, 24 May

Constitution: 8 June 1968; amended 1989 and 2003

Legal system: English law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor Sir John VEREKER (since 11 April 2002) head of government: Premier William Alexander SCOTT (since 24 July 2003); Deputy Premier Ewart BROWN cabinet: Cabinet nominated by the premier, appointed by the governor elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; governor appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed premier by the governor

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (an 11-member body appointed by the governor, the premier, and the opposition) and the House of Assembly (36 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve up to five-year terms) elections: last general election held 24 July 2003 (next to be held July 2008) election results: percent of vote by party - PLP 51.7%, UBP 48%; seats by party - PLP 22, UBP 14

Judicial branch: Supreme Court; Court of Appeal; Magistrate Courts

Political parties and leaders: Progressive Labor Party or PLP [William Alexander SCOTT]; United Bermuda Party or UBP [Grant GIBBONS]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Bermuda Employer's Union [Eddie SAINTS]; Bermuda Industrial Union or BIU [Derrick BURGESS]; Bermuda Public Services Union or BPSU [Ed BALL]; Bermuda Union of Teachers [Michael CHARLES]

International organization participation: Caricom (associate), ICFTU, Interpol (subbureau), IOC, UPU, WCO, Egmont Group, Caribbean Financial Action Task Force

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Deputy Chief of Mission Antoinette BOECKER consulate(s) general: Crown Hill, 16 Middle Road, Devonshire DVO3 mailing address: P. O. Box HM325, Hamilton HMBX; American Consulate General Hamilton, Department of State, 5300 Hamilton Place, Washington, DC 20520-5300 telephone: [1] (441) 295-1342 FAX: [1] (441) 295-1592, [1] (441) 296-9233

Flag description: red, with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and the Bermudian coat of arms (white and green shield with a red lion holding a scrolled shield showing the sinking of the ship Sea Venture off Bermuda in 1609) centered on the outer half of the flag

Economy Bermuda

Economy - overview: Bermuda enjoys one of the highest per capita incomes in the world, nearly equal to that of the US. Its economy is primarily based on providing financial services for international business and luxury facilities for tourists. The effects of 11 September 2001 have had both positive and negative ramifications for Bermuda. On the positive side, a number of new reinsurance companies have located on the island, contributing to the expansion of an already robust international business sector. On the negative side, Bermuda's tourism industry - which derives over 80% of its visitors from the US - was severely hit as American tourists chose not to travel. Tourism rebounded somewhat in 2002-04. Most capital equipment and food must be imported. Bermuda's industrial sector is small, although construction continues to be important; the average cost of a house in June 2003 had risen to $976,000. Agriculture is limited, only 20% of the land being arable.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $2.33 billion (2003 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 2% (2003 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $36,000 (2003 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 1% industry: 10% services: 89% (2002 est.)

Labor force: 37,470 (2000)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture and fishing 3%, laborers 17%, clerical 22%, professional and technical 17%, administrative and managerial 13%, sales 8%, services 20% (2000 est.)

Unemployment rate: 5% (2002 est.)

Population below poverty line: 19% (2000)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3.3% (mid-2003 est.)

Budget: revenues: $671.1 million expenditures: $594.6 million, including capital expenditures of $55 million (FY03/04)

Agriculture - products: bananas, vegetables, citrus, flowers; dairy products

Industries: tourism, international business, light manufacturing

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - production: 643 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 598 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 4,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Exports: $879 million (2002)

Exports - commodities: reexports of pharmaceuticals

Exports - partners: France 73.2%, UK 6.2%, Spain 2.4% (2004)

Imports: $5.523 billion (2002)

Imports - commodities: machinery and transport equipment, construction materials, chemicals, food and live animals

Imports - partners: Kazakhstan 39.2%, France 16.2%, Japan 13.1%, Italy 9.2%, South Korea 8.8%, US 6.4% (2004)

Debt - external: $160 million (FY99/00)

Economic aid - recipient: NA

Currency (code): Bermudian dollar (BMD)

Currency code: BMD

Exchange rates: Bermudian dollar per US dollar - 1.0000 (fixed rate pegged to the US dollar)

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Communications Bermuda

Telephones - main lines in use: 56,000 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 37,873 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: good domestic: fully automatic digital telephone system; fiber optic trunk lines international: country code - 1-441; 3 fiber optic submarine cables; satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 5, FM 3, shortwave 0 (2004)

Radios: 82,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 4 (2004)

Televisions: 66,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .bm

Internet hosts: 5,161 (2001)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 20 (2000)

Internet users: 34,500 (2003)

Transportation Bermuda

Highways: total: 450 km paved: 450 km unpaved: 0 km note: public roads - 209 km; private roads - 241 km (2002)

Ports and harbors: Hamilton, Saint George

Merchant marine: total: 108 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 4,845,326 GRT/6,501,782 DWT by type: bulk carrier 22, cargo 6, container 22, liquefied gas 13, passenger 13, passenger/cargo 6, petroleum tanker 8, refrigerated cargo 11, roll on/roll off 7 foreign-owned: 103 (Australia 2, Canada 20, Finland 2, Germany 1, Greece 1, Hong Kong 5, Indonesia 1, Nigeria 8, Norway 5, Sweden 9, Switzerland 2, United Kingdom 27, United States 20) registered in other countries: 1 (2005)

Airports: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 1 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Bermuda

Military branches: Bermuda Regiment

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $4.03 million (2001)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 0.11% (FY00/01)

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of the UK

Transnational Issues Bermuda

Disputes - international: none

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Bhutan

Introduction Bhutan

Background: In 1865, Britain and Bhutan signed the Treaty of Sinchulu, under which Bhutan would receive an annual subsidy in exchange for ceding some border land. Under British influence, a monarchy was set up in 1907; three years later, a treaty was signed whereby the British agreed not to interfere in Bhutanese internal affairs and Bhutan allowed Britain to direct its foreign affairs. This role was assumed by independent India after 1947. Two years later, a formal Indo-Bhutanese accord returned the areas of Bhutan annexed by the British, formalized the annual subsidies the country received, and defined India's responsibilities in defense and foreign relations. A refugee issue of some 100,000 Bhutanese in Nepal remains unresolved; 90% of the refugees are housed in seven United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) camps.

Geography Bhutan

Location: Southern Asia, between China and India

Geographic coordinates: 27 30 N, 90 30 E

Map references: Asia

Area: total: 47,000 sq km land: 47,000 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: about half the size of Indiana

Land boundaries: total: 1,075 km border countries: China 470 km, India 605 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: varies; tropical in southern plains; cool winters and hot summers in central valleys; severe winters and cool summers in Himalayas

Terrain: mostly mountainous with some fertile valleys and savanna

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Drangme Chhu 97 m highest point: Kula Kangri 7,553 m

Natural resources: timber, hydropower, gypsum, calcium carbonate

Land use: arable land: 3.09% permanent crops: 0.43% other: 96.48% (2001)

Irrigated land: 400 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: violent storms from the Himalayas are the source of the country's name which translates as Land of the Thunder Dragon; frequent landslides during the rainy season

Environment - current issues: soil erosion; limited access to potable water

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea

Geography - note: landlocked; strategic location between China and India; controls several key Himalayan mountain passes

People Bhutan

Population: 2,232,291 note: other estimates range as low as 810,000 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 39.1% (male 452,213/female 420,675) 15-64 years: 56.9% (male 654,109/female 615,431) 65 years and over: 4% (male 45,281/female 44,582) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 20.27 years male: 20.11 years female: 20.44 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.11% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 34.03 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 12.94 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.08 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.06 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 1.02 male(s)/female total population: 1.07 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 100.44 deaths/1,000 live births male: 98.19 deaths/1,000 live births female: 102.81 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 54.39 years male: 54.65 years female: 54.11 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.81 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: less than 0.1% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: less than 100 (1999 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Bhutanese (singular and plural) adjective: Bhutanese

Ethnic groups: Bhote 50%, ethnic Nepalese 35% (includes Lhotsampas - one of several Nepalese ethnic groups), indigenous or migrant tribes 15%

Religions: Lamaistic Buddhist 75%, Indian- and Nepalese-influenced Hinduism 25%

Languages: Dzongkha (official), Bhotes speak various Tibetan dialects, Nepalese speak various Nepalese dialects

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 42.2% male: 56.2% female: 28.1% (1995 est.)

Government Bhutan

Country name: conventional long form: Kingdom of Bhutan conventional short form: Bhutan

Government type: monarchy; special treaty relationship with India

Capital: Thimphu

Administrative divisions: 18 districts (dzongkhag, singular and plural); Bumthang, Chhukha, Chirang, Dagana, Geylegphug, Ha, Lhuntshi, Mongar, Paro, Pemagatsel, Punakha, Samchi, Samdrup Jongkhar, Shemgang, Tashigang, Thimphu, Tongsa, Wangdi Phodrang note: there may be two new districts named Gasa and Yangtse

Independence: 8 August 1949 (from India)

National holiday: National Day (Ugyen WANGCHUCK became first hereditary king), 17 December (1907)

Constitution: no written constitution or bill of rights; note - in 2001 the King commissioned the drafting of a constitution, and in November 2004 presented a draft to the Council of Ministers; now awaiting referendum

Legal system: based on Indian law and English common law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: each family has one vote in village-level elections; note - in late 2003 Bhutan's legislature passed a new election law

Executive branch: chief of state: King Jigme Singye WANGCHUCK (since 24 July 1972) head of government: Chairman of the Council of Ministers Lyonpo Sangay NGEDUP (since 5 September 2005) cabinet: Council of Ministers (Lhengye Shungtsog) nominated by the monarch, approved by the National Assembly; members serve fixed, five-year terms; note - there is also a Royal Advisory Council (Lodoi Tsokde), members nominated by the monarch elections: none; the monarch is hereditary, but democratic reforms in July 1998 grant the National Assembly authority to remove the monarch with two-thirds vote

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Tshogdu (150 seats; 105 elected from village constituencies, 10 represent religious bodies, and 35 are designated by the monarch to represent government and other secular interests; members serve three-year terms) elections: local elections last held November 2002 (next to be held NA 2005) election results: NA

Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Appeal (the monarch); High Court (judges appointed by the monarch)

Political parties and leaders: no legal parties

Political pressure groups and leaders: Buddhist clergy; ethnic Nepalese organizations leading militant antigovernment campaign; Indian merchant community; United Front for Democracy (exiled)

International organization participation: AsDB, CP, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IMF, IOC, IOM (observer), ITU, NAM, OPCW (signatory), SAARC, SACEP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO (observer)

Diplomatic representation in the US: none; note - Bhutan has a Permanent Mission to the UN; address: 2 United Nations Plaza, 27th Floor, New York, NY 10017; telephone [1] (212) 826-1919; FAX [1] (212) 826-2998; the Bhutanese mission to the UN has consular jurisdiction in the US consulate(s) general: New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: the US and Bhutan have no formal diplomatic relations, although informal contact is maintained between the Bhutanese and US Embassy in New Delhi (India)

Flag description: divided diagonally from the lower hoist side corner; the upper triangle is yellow and the lower triangle is orange; centered along the dividing line is a large black and white dragon facing away from the hoist side

Economy Bhutan

Economy - overview: The economy, one of the world's smallest and least developed, is based on agriculture and forestry, which provide the main livelihood for more than 90% of the population. Agriculture consists largely of subsistence farming and animal husbandry. Rugged mountains dominate the terrain and make the building of roads and other infrastructure difficult and expensive. The economy is closely aligned with India's through strong trade and monetary links and dependence on India's financial assistance. The industrial sector is technologically backward, with most production of the cottage industry type. Most development projects, such as road construction, rely on Indian migrant labor. Bhutan's hydropower potential and its attraction for tourists are key resources. Model education, social, and environment programs are underway with support from multilateral development organizations. Each economic program takes into account the government's desire to protect the country's environment and cultural traditions. For example, the government, in its cautious expansion of the tourist sector, encourages visits by upscale, environmentally conscientious tourists. Detailed controls and uncertain policies in areas like industrial licensing, trade, labor, and finance continue to hamper foreign investment.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $2.9 billion (2003 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 5.3% (2003 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,400 (2003 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 45% industry: 10% services: 45% (2002 est.)

Labor force: NA note: massive lack of skilled labor

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 93%, industry and commerce 2%, services 5%

Unemployment rate: NA

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3% (2002 est.)

Budget: revenues: $146 million expenditures: $152 million, including capital expenditures of NA note: the government of India finances nearly three-fifths of Bhutan's budget expenditures (FY95/96 est.)

Agriculture - products: rice, corn, root crops, citrus, foodgrains; dairy products, eggs

Industries: cement, wood products, processed fruits, alcoholic beverages, calcium carbide

Industrial production growth rate: 9.3% (1996 est.)

Electricity - production: 2.001 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 0.1% hydro: 99.9% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 312.9 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 1.56 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 12 million kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 1,020 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Exports: $154 million f.o.b. (2000 est.)

Exports - commodities: electricity (to India), cardamom, gypsum, timber, handicrafts, cement, fruit, precious stones, spices

Exports - partners: Bangladesh 47.4%, Japan 30.2%, France 3.4% (2004)

Imports: $196 million c.i.f. (2000 est.)

Imports - commodities: fuel and lubricants, grain, machinery and parts, vehicles, fabrics, rice

Imports - partners: Germany 65.4%, Japan 14.3%, Austria 6.8%, UK 4.5% (2004)

Debt - external: $245 million (2000)

Economic aid - recipient: substantial aid from India and other nations

Currency (code): ngultrum (BTN); Indian rupee (INR)

Currency code: BTN; INR

Exchange rates: ngultrum per US dollar - 45.317 (2004), 46.583 (2003), 48.61 (2002), 47.186 (2001), 44.942 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June

Communications Bhutan

Telephones - main lines in use: 25,200 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 22,000 (2005)

Telephone system: general assessment: telecommunications facilities are poor domestic: very low tele-density; domestic service is very poor especially in rural areas; wireless service available since 2003 international: country code - 975; international telephone and telegraph service via landline and microwave relay through India; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2005)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 0, FM 1, shortwave 1 (2004)

Radios: 37,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (2005)

Televisions: 11,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .bt

Internet hosts: 985 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): NA

Internet users: 15,000 (2003)

Transportation Bhutan

Highways: total: 4,007 km paved: 24 km unpaved: 3,983 km (2002)

Airports: 2 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Bhutan

Military branches: Royal Bhutan Army (includes Royal Bodyguard and Royal Bhutan Police) (2005)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service; no conscription (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 483,860 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 314,975 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 23,939 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $13.7 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.8% (2004)

Transnational Issues Bhutan

Disputes - international: approximately 104,000 Bhutanese refugees live in Nepal, 90% of whom reside in seven UN Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees camps; Bhutan cooperates with India to expel Indian separatists

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Bolivia

Introduction Bolivia

Background: Bolivia, named after independence fighter Simon BOLIVAR, broke away from Spanish rule in 1825; much of its subsequent history has consisted of a series of nearly 200 coups and counter-coups. Comparatively democratic civilian rule was established in 1982, but leaders have faced difficult problems of deep-seated poverty, social unrest, and illegal drug production. Current goals include attracting foreign investment, strengthening the educational system, resolving disputes with coca growers over Bolivia's counterdrug efforts, and waging an anticorruption campaign.

Geography Bolivia

Location: Central South America, southwest of Brazil

Geographic coordinates: 17 00 S, 65 00 W

Map references: South America

Area: total: 1,098,580 sq km land: 1,084,390 sq km water: 14,190 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly less than three times the size of Montana

Land boundaries: total: 6,743 km border countries: Argentina 832 km, Brazil 3,400 km, Chile 861 km, Paraguay 750 km, Peru 900 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: varies with altitude; humid and tropical to cold and semiarid

Terrain: rugged Andes Mountains with a highland plateau (Altiplano), hills, lowland plains of the Amazon Basin

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Rio Paraguay 90 m highest point: Nevado Sajama 6,542 m

Natural resources: tin, natural gas, petroleum, zinc, tungsten, antimony, silver, iron, lead, gold, timber, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 2.67% permanent crops: 0.19% other: 97.14% (2001)

Irrigated land: 1,280 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: flooding in the northeast (March-April)

Environment - current issues: the clearing of land for agricultural purposes and the international demand for tropical timber are contributing to deforestation; soil erosion from overgrazing and poor cultivation methods (including slash-and-burn agriculture); desertification; loss of biodiversity; industrial pollution of water supplies used for drinking and irrigation

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Environmental Modification, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection

Geography - note: landlocked; shares control of Lago Titicaca, world's highest navigable lake (elevation 3,805 m), with Peru

People Bolivia

Population: 8,857,870 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 35.7% (male 1,613,049/female 1,551,023) 15-64 years: 59.8% (male 2,591,328/female 2,701,892) 65 years and over: 4.5% (male 178,486/female 222,092) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 21.47 years male: 20.79 years female: 22.17 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.49% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 23.76 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 7.64 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -1.27 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.8 male(s)/female total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 53.11 deaths/1,000 live births male: 56.7 deaths/1,000 live births female: 49.33 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 65.5 years male: 62.89 years female: 68.25 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.94 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.1% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 4,900 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 500 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Bolivian(s) adjective: Bolivian

Ethnic groups: Quechua 30%, mestizo (mixed white and Amerindian ancestry) 30%, Aymara 25%, white 15%

Religions: Roman Catholic 95%, Protestant (Evangelical Methodist) 5%

Languages: Spanish (official), Quechua (official), Aymara (official)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 87.2% male: 93.1% female: 81.6% (2003 est.)

Government Bolivia

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Bolivia conventional short form: Bolivia local long form: Republica de Bolivia local short form: Bolivia

Government type: republic

Capital: La Paz (seat of government); Sucre (legal capital and seat of judiciary)

Administrative divisions: 9 departments (departamentos, singular - departamento); Chuquisaca, Cochabamba, Beni, La Paz, Oruro, Pando, Potosi, Santa Cruz, Tarija

Independence: 6 August 1825 (from Spain)

National holiday: Independence Day, 6 August (1825)

Constitution: 2 February 1967; revised in August 1994

Legal system: based on Spanish law and Napoleonic Code; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age, universal and compulsory (married); 21 years of age, universal and compulsory (single)

Executive branch: chief of state: President Eduardo RODRIGUEZ Veltze (since 9 June 2005); Vice President (vacant); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government head of government: President Eduardo RODRIGUEZ Veltze (since 9 June 2005); Vice President (vacant); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president elections: president and vice president elected on the same ticket by popular vote for five-year terms; election last held 30 June 2002 (next to be held June 2007) election results: as a result of no candidate winning a majority in the 30 June 2002 election, Gonzalo SANCHEZ DE LOZADA Bustamante was chosen president by Congress; congressional votes - Gonzalo SANCHEZ DE LOZADA Bustamante 84, Evo MORALES 43; note - following the resignation of the elected president on 17 October 2003 and Vice President Carlos Diego MESA Gisbert on 9 June 2005, Eduardo RODRIGUEZ Veltze, President of the Supreme Court and constitutional successor, became president.

Legislative branch: bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of Chamber of Senators or Camara de Senadores (27 seats; members are elected by proportional representation from party lists to serve five-year terms) and Chamber of Deputies or Camara de Diputados (130 seats; 68 are directly elected from their districts and 62 are elected by proportional representation from party lists to serve five-year terms) elections: Chamber of Senators and Chamber of Deputies - last held 30 June 2002 (next to be held June 2007) election results: Chamber of Senators - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - MNR 11, MAS 8, MIR 5, NFR 2, other 1; Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - MNR 36, MAS 27, MIR 26, NFR 25, others 16

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Corte Suprema (judges appointed for 10-year terms by National Congress); District Courts (one in each department); provincial and local courts (to try minor cases)

Political parties and leaders: Bolivian Socialist Falange or FSB [Romel PANTOJA]; Civic Solidarity Union or UCS [Johnny FERNANDEZ]; Free Bolivia Movement or MBL [Franz BARRIOS]; Marshal of Ayacucho Institutional Vanguard or VIMA [Freddy ZABALA]; Movement of the Revolutionary Left or MIR [Jaime PAZ Zamora]; Movement Toward Socialism or MAS [Evo MORALES]; Movement Without Fear or MSM [Juan DEL GRANADO]; Nationalist Democratic Action or ADN [Jorge Fernando QUIROGA Ramirez]; Nationalist Revolutionary Movement or MNR [leader NA]; New Republican Force or NFR [Manfred REYES-VILLA]; Pachakuti Indigenous Movement or MIP [Felipe QUISPE]; Socialist Party or PS [Jeres JUSTINIANO]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Cocalero Groups; indigenous organizations; labor unions; Sole Confederation of Campesino Workers of Bolivia or CSUTCB [Roman LOAYZA]

International organization participation: CAN, CSN, FAO, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO (correspondent), ITU, LAES, LAIA, Mercosur (associate), MIGA, MINUSTAH, MONUC, NAM, OAS, ONUB, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, RG, UN, UNAMSIL, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNMIK, UNMIL, UNMISET, UNOCI, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Jaime APARICIO Otero chancery: 3014 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 483-4410 FAX: [1] (202) 328-3712 consulate(s) general: Miami, New York, and San Francisco

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador David N. GREENLEE embassy: Avenida Arce 2780, San Jorge, La Paz mailing address: P. O. Box 425, La Paz; APO AA 34032 telephone: [591] (2) 2430120, 2430251 FAX: [591] (2) 2433900

Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of red (top), yellow, and green with the coat of arms centered on the yellow band; similar to the flag of Ghana, which has a large black five-pointed star centered in the yellow band

Economy Bolivia

Economy - overview: Bolivia, long one of the poorest and least developed Latin American countries, reformed its economy after suffering a disastrous economic crisis in the early 1980s. The reforms spurred real GDP growth, which averaged 4 percent in the 1990s, and poverty rates fell. Economic growth, however, lagged again beginning in 1999 because of a global slowdown and homegrown factors such as political turmoil, civil unrest, and soaring fiscal deficits, all of which hurt investor confidence. In 2003, violent protests against the pro-foreign investment economic policies of President SANCHEZ DE LOZADA led to his resignation and the cancellation of plans to export Bolivia's newly discovered natural gas reserves to large northern hemisphere markets. Foreign investment dried up as companies adopted a wait-and-see attitude regarding new President Carlos MESA's willingness to protect investor rights in the face of increased demands by radical groups that the government expropriate foreign-owned assets. Real GDP growth in 2003 and 2004 - helped by increased demand for natural gas in neighboring Brazil - was positive, but still below the levels seen during the 1990s. Bolivia remains dependent on foreign aid from multilateral lenders and foreign governments.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $22.33 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 3.7% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $2,600 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 13% industry: 28% services: 59% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 3.8 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture NA%, industry NA%, services NA%

Unemployment rate: 9.2% in urban areas note: widespread underemployment (2003 est.)

Population below poverty line: 64% (2004 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 1.3% highest 10%: 32% (1999)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 44.7 (1999)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 4.9% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 10.4% of GDP (2003 est.)

Budget: revenues: $2.264 billion expenditures: $2.769 billion, including capital expenditures of $741 million (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: soybeans, coffee, coca, cotton, corn, sugarcane, rice, potatoes; timber

Industries: mining, smelting, petroleum, food and beverages, tobacco, handicrafts, clothing

Industrial production growth rate: 5.7% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 4.132 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 44.4% hydro: 54% nuclear: 0% other: 1.5% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 3.848 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 3 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 9 million kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 39,000 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 49,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 458.8 million bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - production: 8.44 billion cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 1.15 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 2.9 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 727.2 billion cu m (1 January 2002)

Current account balance: $273 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $1.986 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: natural gas, soybeans and soy products, crude petroleum, zinc ore, tin

Exports - partners: Brazil 40%, US 13.9%, Colombia 8.7%, Peru 6.3%, Japan 4.5% (2004)

Imports: $1.595 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: petroleum products, plastics, paper, aircraft and aircraft parts, prepared foods, automobiles, insecticides, soybeans

Imports - partners: Brazil 29.7%, Argentina 17.6%, US 10.8%, Chile 7.7%, Peru 7.3% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $1.214 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $5.439 billion (June 2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $681 million (2002)

Currency (code): boliviano (BOB)

Currency code: BOB

Exchange rates: bolivianos per US dollar - 7.9363 (2004), 7.6592 (2003), 7.17 (2002), 6.6069 (2001), 6.1835 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Bolivia

Telephones - main lines in use: 600,100 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 1,401,500 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: new subscribers face bureaucratic difficulties; most telephones are concentrated in La Paz and other cities; mobile cellular telephone use expanding rapidly domestic: primary trunk system, which is being expanded, employs digital microwave radio relay; some areas are served by fiber-optic cable; mobile cellular systems are being expanded international: country code - 591; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 171, FM 73, shortwave 77 (1999)

Radios: 5.25 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 48 (1997)

Televisions: 900,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .bo

Internet hosts: 7,080 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 9 (2000)

Internet users: 270,000 (2002)

Transportation Bolivia

Railways: total: 3,519 km narrow gauge: 3,519 km 1.000-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 60,282 km paved: 3,979 km unpaved: 56,303 km (2002)

Waterways: 10,000 km (commercially navigable) (2004)

Pipelines: gas 4,860 km; liquid petroleum gas 47 km; oil 2,457 km; refined products 1,589 km; unknown (oil/water) 247 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Puerto Aguirre (on the Paraguay/Parana waterway, at the Bolivia/Brazil border); also, Bolivia has free port privileges in maritime ports in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Paraguay

Merchant marine: total: 32 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 413,407 GRT/699,901 DWT by type: bulk carrier 2, cargo 16, chemical tanker 1, container 1, passenger/cargo 2, petroleum tanker 9, refrigerated cargo 1 foreign-owned: 11 (Argentina 1, Egypt 2, Eritrea 1, Germany 1, Iran 1, Singapore 2, United Kingdom 1, United States 2) (2005)

Airports: 1,065 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 16 over 3,047 m: 4 2,438 to 3,047 m: 4 1,524 to 2,437 m: 5 914 to 1,523 m: 3 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1,049 over 3,047 m: 1 2,438 to 3,047 m: 3 1,524 to 2,437 m: 60 914 to 1,523 m: 207 under 914 m: 778 (2004 est.)

Military Bolivia

Military branches: Army (Ejercito Boliviano), Navy (Fuerza Naval; includes Marines), Air Force (Fuerza Aerea Boliviana) (2004)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service; when annual number of volunteers falls short of goal, compulsory recruitment is effected, including conscription of boys as young as 14; one estimate holds that 40% of the armed forces are under the age of 18, with 50% of those under the age of 16; conscript tour of duty - 12 months (2002)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 1,923,234 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 1,311,414 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 101,101 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $132.2 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.6% (2004)

Transnational Issues Bolivia

Disputes - international: Chile rebuffs Bolivia's reactivated claim to restore the Atacama corridor, ceded to Chile in 1884, offering instead unrestricted but not sovereign maritime access through Chile for Bolivian natural gas and other commodities

Illicit drugs: world's third-largest cultivator of coca (after Colombia and Peru) with an estimated 28,450 hectares under cultivation in June 2003, a 23% increase from June 2002; intermediate coca products and cocaine exported mostly to or through Brazil, Argentina, and Chile to European and US drug markets; eradication and alternative crop programs under the MESA administration have been unable to keep pace with farmers' attempts to increase cultivation; money-laundering activity related to narcotics trade, especially along the borders with Brazil and Paraguay

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Bosnia and Herzegovina

Introduction Bosnia and Herzegovina

Background: Bosnia and Herzegovina's declaration of sovereignty in October 1991, was followed by a declaration of independence from the former Yugoslavia on 3 March 1992 after a referendum boycotted by ethnic Serbs. The Bosnian Serbs - supported by neighboring Serbia and Montenegro - responded with armed resistance aimed at partitioning the republic along ethnic lines and joining Serb-held areas to form a "Greater Serbia." In March 1994, Bosniaks and Croats reduced the number of warring factions from three to two by signing an agreement creating a joint Bosniak/Croat Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. On 21 November 1995, in Dayton, Ohio, the warring parties initialed a peace agreement that brought to a halt three years of interethnic civil strife (the final agreement was signed in Paris on 14 December 1995). The Dayton Agreement retained Bosnia and Herzegovina's international boundaries and created a joint multi-ethnic and democratic government. This national government was charged with conducting foreign, diplomatic, and fiscal policy. Also recognized was a second tier of government comprised of two entities roughly equal in size: the Bosniak/Croat Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Bosnian Serb-led Republika Srpska (RS). The Federation and RS governments were charged with overseeing most government functions. The Office of the High Representative (OHR) was established to oversee the implementation of the civilian aspects of the agreement. In 1995-96, a NATO-led international peacekeeping force (IFOR) of 60,000 troops served in Bosnia to implement and monitor the military aspects of the agreement. IFOR was succeeded by a smaller, NATO-led Stabilization Force (SFOR) whose mission was to deter renewed hostilities. European Union peacekeeping troops (EUFOR) replaced SFOR in December 2004; their mission was to maintain peace and stability throughout the country.

Geography Bosnia and Herzegovina

Location: Southeastern Europe, bordering the Adriatic Sea and Croatia

Geographic coordinates: 44 00 N, 18 00 E

Map references: Europe

Area: total: 51,129 sq km land: 51,129 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than West Virginia

Land boundaries: total: 1,459 km border countries: Croatia 932 km, Serbia and Montenegro 527 km

Coastline: 20 km

Maritime claims: no data available

Climate: hot summers and cold winters; areas of high elevation have short, cool summers and long, severe winters; mild, rainy winters along coast

Terrain: mountains and valleys

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Adriatic Sea 0 m highest point: Maglic 2,386 m

Natural resources: coal, iron ore, bauxite, copper, lead, zinc, chromite, cobalt, manganese, nickel, clay, gypsum, salt, sand, forests, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 13.6% permanent crops: 2.96% other: 83.44% (2001)

Irrigated land: 20 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: destructive earthquakes

Environment - current issues: air pollution from metallurgical plants; sites for disposing of urban waste are limited; water shortages and destruction of infrastructure because of the 1992-95 civil strife; deforestation

Environment - international agreements: party to: Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: within Bosnia and Herzegovina's recognized borders, the country is divided into a joint Bosniak/Croat Federation (about 51% of the territory) and the Bosnian Serb-led Republika Srpska or RS (about 49% of the territory); the region called Herzegovina is contiguous to Croatia and Serbia and Montenegro (Montenegro), and traditionally has been settled by an ethnic Croat majority in the west and an ethnic Serb majority in the east

People Bosnia and Herzegovina

Population: 4,025,476 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 18.3% (male 378,784/female 358,784) 15-64 years: 70.7% (male 1,458,405/female 1,388,793) 65 years and over: 10.9% (male 188,741/female 251,969) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 36.21 years male: 35.81 years female: 36.63 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.44% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 12.49 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 8.44 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0.3 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.75 male(s)/female total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 21.05 deaths/1,000 live births male: 23.62 deaths/1,000 live births female: 18.31 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 77.83 years male: 74.21 years female: 81.72 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.71 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: less than 0.1% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 900 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 100 (2001 est.)

Nationality: noun: Bosnian(s), Herzegovinian(s) adjective: Bosnian, Herzegovinian

Ethnic groups: Serb 37.1%, Bosniak 48%, Croat 14.3%, other 0.6% (2000) note: Bosniak has replaced Muslim as an ethnic term in part to avoid confusion with the religious term Muslim - an adherent of Islam

Religions: Muslim 40%, Orthodox 31%, Roman Catholic 15%, other 14%

Languages: Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 94.6% male: 98.4% female: 91.1% (2000 est.)

Government Bosnia and Herzegovina

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Bosnia and Herzegovina local long form: none local short form: Bosna i Hercegovina former: People's Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Socialist Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina

Government type: emerging federal democratic republic

Capital: Sarajevo

Administrative divisions: 2 first-order administrative divisions and 1 internationally supervised district* - Brcko district (Brcko Distrikt)*, the Bosniak/Croat Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Federacija Bosna i Hercegovina) and the Bosnian Serb-led Republika Srpska; note - Brcko district is in northeastern Bosnia and is an administrative unit under the sovereignty of Bosnia and Herzegovina; the district remains under international supervision

Independence: 1 March 1992 (from Yugoslavia; referendum for independence was completed 1 March 1992; independence was declared 3 March 1992)

National holiday: National Day, 25 November (1943)

Constitution: the Dayton Agreement, signed 14 December 1995, included a new constitution now in force; note - each of the entities also has its own constitution

Legal system: based on civil law system

Suffrage: 18 years of age, universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Chairman of the Presidency Ivo Miro JOVIC (since 28 June 2005; presidency member since 9 May 2005 - Croat; note - Dragan COVIC was sacked by High Representative Paddy ASHDOWN on 29 Mar 2005); other members of the three-member rotating (every eight months) presidency: Borislav PARAVAC (since 10 April 2003 - Serb); and Sulejman TIHIC (since 5 October 2002 - Bosniak) head of government: Chairman of the Council of Ministers Adnan TERZIC (since 20 December 2002) cabinet: Council of Ministers nominated by the council chairman; approved by the National House of Representatives elections: the three members of the presidency (one Bosniak, one Croat, one Serb) are elected by popular vote for a four-year term; the member with the most votes becomes the chairman unless he or she was the incumbent chairman at the time of the election, but the chairmanship rotates every eight months; election last held 5 October 2002 (next to be held NA 2006); the chairman of the Council of Ministers is appointed by the presidency and confirmed by the National House of Representatives election results: percent of vote - Mirko SAROVIC with 35.5% of the Serb vote was elected chairman of the collective presidency for the first eight months; Dragan COVIC received 61.5% of the Croat vote; Sulejman TIHIC received 37% of the Bosniak vote note: President of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina: Niko LOZANCIC (since 27 January 2003); Vice Presidents Sahbaz DZIHANOVIC (since NA 2003) and Desnica RADIVOJEVIC (since NA 2003); President of the Republika Srpska: Dragan CAVIC (since 28 November 2002)

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliamentary Assembly or Skupstina consists of the National House of Representatives or Predstavnicki Dom (42 seats - elected by proportional representation, 28 seats allocated from the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and 14 seats from the Republika Srpska; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms); and the House of Peoples or Dom Naroda (15 seats - 5 Bosniak, 5 Croat, 5 Serb; members elected by the Bosniak/Croat Federation's House of Representatives and the Republika Srpska's National Assembly to serve four-year terms); note - Bosnia's election law specifies four-year terms for the state and first-order administrative division entity legislatures elections: National House of Representatives - elections last held 5 October 2002 (next to be held in NA 2006); House of Peoples - last constituted NA January 2003 (next to be constituted in 2007) election results: National House of Representatives - percent of vote by party/coalition - SDA 21.9%, SDS 14.0%, SBiH 10.5%, SDP 10.4%, SNSD 9.8%, HDZ 9.5%, PDP 4.6%, others 19.3%; seats by party/coalition - SDA 10, SDS 5, SBiH 6, SDP 4, SNSD 3, HDZ 5, PDP 2, others 7; House of Peoples - percent of vote by party/coalition - NA%; seats by party/coalition - NA note: the Bosniak/Croat Federation has a bicameral legislature that consists of a House of Representatives (98 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms); elections last held 5 October 2002 (next to be held NA October 2006); percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party/coalition - SDA 32, HDZ-BiH 16, SDP 15, SBiH 15, other 20; and a House of Peoples (60 seats - 30 Bosniak, 30 Croat); last constituted December 2002; the Republika Srpska has a National Assembly (83 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms); elections last held 5 October 2002 (next to be held in the fall of 2006); percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party/coalition - SDS 26, SNSD 19, PDP 9, SDA 6, SRS 4, SPRS 3, DNZ 3, SBiH 4, SDP 3, others 6; as a result of the 2002 constitutional reform process, a 28-member Republika Srpska Council of Peoples (COP) was established in the Republika Srpska National Assembly including 8 Croats, 8 Bosniaks, 8 Serbs, and 4 members of the smaller communities

Judicial branch: BiH Constitutional Court (consists of nine members: four members are selected by the Bosniak/Croat Federation's House of Representatives, two members by the Republika Srpska's National Assembly, and three non-Bosnian members by the president of the European Court of Human Rights); BiH State Court (consists of nine judges and three divisions - Administrative, Appellate and Criminal - having jurisdiction over cases related to state-level law and appellate jurisdiction over cases initiated in the entities; note - a War Crimes Chamber may be added at a future date) note: the entities each have a Supreme Court; each entity also has a number of lower courts; there are 10 cantonal courts in the Federation, plus a number of municipal courts; the Republika Srpska has five municipal courts

Political parties and leaders: Alliance of Independent Social Democrats or SNSD [Milorad DODIK]; Bosnian Party or BOSS [Mirnes AJANOVIC]; Civic Democratic Party or GDS [Ibrahim SPAHIC]; Croatian Democratic Union of Bosnia and Herzegovina or HDZ-BH [Barisa COLAK]; Croat Christian Democratic Union of Bosnia and Herzegovina or HKDU [Mijo IVANIC-LONIC]; Croat Party of Rights or HSP [Zdravko HRISTIC]; Croat Peasants Party or HSS [Marko TADIC]; Democratic National Union or DNZ [Fikret ABDIC]; Liberal Democratic Party or LDS [Rasim KADIC]; New Croat Initiative or NHI [Kresimir ZUBAK]; Party for Bosnia and Herzegovina or SBiH [Safet HALILOVIC]; Party of Democratic Action or SDA [Sulejman TIHIC]; Party of Democratic Progress or PDP [Mladen IVANIC]; Serb Democratic Party or SDS [Dragan CAVIC - acting]; Serb Radical Party of the Republika Srpska or SRS-RS [Milanko MIHAJLICA]; Serb Radical Party-Dr. Vojislav Seselj or SRS-VS [Radislav KANJERIC]; Social Democratic Party of BIH or SDP [Zlatko LAGUMDZIJA]; Social Democratic Union or SDU [Miro LAZOVIC]; Socialist Party of Republika Srpska or SPRS [Petar DJOKIC]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: BIS, CE, CEI, EBRD, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO, ITU, MIGA, MONUC, NAM (guest), OAS (observer), OIC (observer), OPCW, OSCE, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNMEE, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO (observer)

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Bisera TURKOVIC chancery: 2109 E Street NW, Washington, DC 20037 telephone: [1] (202) 337-1500 FAX: [1] (202) 337-1502 consulate(s) general: Chicago, New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Douglas L. McELHANEY embassy: Alipasina 43, 71000 Sarajevo mailing address: use street address telephone: [387] (33) 445-700 FAX: [387] (33) 659-722 branch office(s): Banja Luka, Mostar

Flag description: a wide medium blue vertical band on the fly side with a yellow isosceles triangle abutting the band and the top of the flag; the remainder of the flag is medium blue with seven full five-pointed white stars and two half stars top and bottom along the hypotenuse of the triangle

Economy Bosnia and Herzegovina

Economy - overview: Bosnia and Herzegovina ranked next to Macedonia as the poorest republic in the old Yugoslav federation. Although agriculture is almost all in private hands, farms are small and inefficient, and the republic traditionally is a net importer of food. Industry has been greatly overstaffed, one reflection of the socialist economic structure of Yugoslavia. TITO had pushed the development of military industries in the republic with the result that Bosnia hosted a number of Yugoslavia's defense plants. The interethnic warfare in Bosnia caused production to plummet by 80% from 1992 to 1995 and unemployment to soar. With an uneasy peace in place, output recovered in 1996-99 at high percentage rates from a low base; but output growth slowed in 2000-02. Part of the lag in output was made up in 2003-2004. National-level statistics are limited and do not capture the large share of black market activity. The konvertibilna marka (convertible mark or BAM)- the national currency introduced in 1998 - is now pegged to the euro, and the Central Bank of Bosnia and Herzegovina has dramatically increased its reserve holdings. Implementation of privatization, however, has been slow, and local entities only reluctantly support national-level institutions. Banking reform accelerated in 2001 as all the Communist-era payments bureaus were shut down. A sizeable current account deficit and high unemployment rate remain the two most serious economic problems. The country receives substantial amounts of reconstruction assistance and humanitarian aid from the international community but will have to prepare for an era of declining assistance.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $26.21 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 5% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $6,500 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 14.2% industry: 30.8% services: 55% (2002)

Labor force: 1.026 million (2001)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture NA, industry NA, services NA

Unemployment rate: 44% officially; however, grey economy may reduce actual unemployment to near 20% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 25% (2004 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA% highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1.1% (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $3.618 billion expenditures: $3.642 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: wheat, corn, fruits, vegetables; livestock

Industries: steel, coal, iron ore, lead, zinc, manganese, bauxite, vehicle assembly, textiles, tobacco products, wooden furniture, tank and aircraft assembly, domestic appliances, oil refining (2001)

Industrial production growth rate: 5.5% (2003 est.)

Electricity - production: 10.04 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 53.5% hydro: 46.5% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 8.318 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 3.288 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 2.271 billion kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 20,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 300 million cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 300 million cu m (2001 est.)

Current account balance: $-2.1 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $1.7 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: metals, clothing, wood products

Exports - partners: Italy 22.3%, Croatia 21.1%, Germany 20.8%, Austria 7.4%, Slovenia 7.1%, Hungary 4.8% (2004)

Imports: $5.2 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment, chemicals, fuels, foodstuffs

Imports - partners: Croatia 23.8%, Slovenia 15.8%, Germany 14.8%, Italy 11.4%, Austria 6.6%, Hungary 6.1% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $2 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $3 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $650 million (2001 est.)

Currency (code): marka (BAM)

Currency code: BAM

Exchange rates: marka per US dollar - 1.58 (2004), 1.73 (2003), 2.08 (2002), 2.19 (2001), 2.12 (2000) note: the marka is pegged to the euro

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Bosnia and Herzegovina

Telephones - main lines in use: 938,000 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 1.05 million (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: telephone and telegraph network needs modernization and expansion; many urban areas are below average as contrasted with services in other former Yugoslav republics domestic: NA international: country code - 387; no satellite earth stations

Radio broadcast stations: AM 8, FM 16, shortwave 1 (1998)

Radios: 940,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 33 (plus 277 repeaters) (September 1995)

Televisions: NA

Internet country code: .ba

Internet hosts: 6,994 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 3 (2000)

Internet users: 100,000 (2002)

Transportation Bosnia and Herzegovina

Railways: total: 1,021 km (795 km electrified) standard gauge: 1,021 km 1.435-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 21,846 km paved: 11,424 km unpaved: 10,422 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: Sava River (northern border) open to shipping but use limited because of no agreement with neighboring countries (2004)

Ports and harbors: Bosanska Gradiska, Bosanski Brod, Bosanski Samac, and Brcko (all inland waterway ports on the Sava), Orasje

Airports: 27 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 8 2,438 to 3,047 m: 4 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 under 914 m: 3 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 19 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 7 under 914 m: 11 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 5 (2004 est.)

Military Bosnia and Herzegovina

Military branches: VF Army (the air and air defense forces are subordinate commands within the Army), VRS Army (the air and air defense forces are subordinate commands within the Army)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for compulsory military service in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina; 16 years of age in times of war; 18 years of age for Republika Srpska; 17 years of age for voluntary military service in the Federation and in the Republika Srpska; by law, military obligations cover all healthy men between the ages of 18 and 60, and all women between the ages of 18 and 55; service obligation is 4 months (July 2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 1,034,367 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 829,530 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 31,264 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $234.3 million (FY02)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 4.5% (FY02)

Transnational Issues Bosnia and Herzegovina

Disputes - international: Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia and Montenegro have delimited most of their boundary, but sections along the Drina River remain in dispute; discussions continue with Croatia on several small disputed sections of the boundary

Refugees and internally displaced persons: IDPs: 327,200 (Bosnian Croats, Serbs, and Muslims displaced in 1992-95 war) (2004)

Illicit drugs: minor transit point for marijuana and opiate trafficking routes to Western Europe; remains highly vulnerable to money-laundering activity given a primarily cash-based and unregulated economy, weak law enforcement and instances of corruption

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Botswana

Introduction Botswana

Background: Formerly the British protectorate of Bechuanaland, Botswana adopted its new name upon independence in 1966. Four decades of uninterrupted civilian leadership, progressive social policies, and significant capital investment have created one of the most dynamic economies in Africa. Mineral extraction, principally diamond mining, dominates economic activity, though tourism is a growing sector due to the country's conservation practices and extensive nature preserves. Botswana has one of the world's highest known rates of HIV/AIDS infection, but also one of Africa's most progressive and comprehensive programs for dealing with the disease.

Geography Botswana

Location: Southern Africa, north of South Africa

Geographic coordinates: 22 00 S, 24 00 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 600,370 sq km land: 585,370 sq km water: 15,000 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Texas

Land boundaries: total: 4,013 km border countries: Namibia 1,360 km, South Africa 1,840 km, Zimbabwe 813 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: semiarid; warm winters and hot summers

Terrain: predominantly flat to gently rolling tableland; Kalahari Desert in southwest

Elevation extremes: lowest point: junction of the Limpopo and Shashe Rivers 513 m highest point: Tsodilo Hills 1,489 m

Natural resources: diamonds, copper, nickel, salt, soda ash, potash, coal, iron ore, silver

Land use: arable land: 0.65% permanent crops: 0.01% other: 99.34% (2001)

Irrigated land: 10 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: periodic droughts; seasonal August winds blow from the west, carrying sand and dust across the country, which can obscure visibility

Environment - current issues: overgrazing; desertification; limited fresh water resources

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: landlocked; population concentrated in eastern part of the country

People Botswana

Population: 1,640,115 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 38.8% (male 322,916/female 312,735) 15-64 years: 57.5% (male 455,183/female 487,236) 65 years and over: 3.8% (male 23,914/female 38,131) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 19.29 years male: 18.64 years female: 19.93 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 23.33 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 29.36 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 6.07 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.03 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.93 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.63 male(s)/female total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 54.58 deaths/1,000 live births male: 55.97 deaths/1,000 live births female: 53.14 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 33.87 years male: 33.89 years female: 33.84 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.85 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 37.3% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 350,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 33,000 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne disease: malaria (2004)

Nationality: noun: Motswana (singular), Batswana (plural) adjective: Motswana (singular), Batswana (plural)

Ethnic groups: Tswana (or Setswana) 79%, Kalanga 11%, Basarwa 3%, other, including Kgalagadi and white 7%

Religions: Christian 71.6%, Badimo 6%, other 1.4%, unspecified 0.4%, none 20.6% (2001 census)

Languages: Setswana 78.2%, Kalanga 7.9%, Sekgalagadi 2.8%, English 2.1% (official), other 8.6%, unspecified 0.4% (2001 census)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 79.8% male: 76.9% female: 82.4% (2003 est.)

Government Botswana

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Botswana conventional short form: Botswana former: Bechuanaland

Government type: parliamentary republic

Capital: Gaborone

Administrative divisions: 9 districts and 5 town councils*; Central, Francistown*, Gaborone*, Ghanzi, Jwaneng*, Kgalagadi, Kgatleng, Kweneng, Lobatse*, Northwest, Northeast, Selebi-Pikwe*, Southeast, Southern

Independence: 30 September 1966 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day (Botswana Day), 30 September (1966)

Constitution: March 1965, effective 30 September 1966

Legal system: based on Roman-Dutch law and local customary law; judicial review limited to matters of interpretation; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Festus G. MOGAE (since 1 April 1998) and Vice President Seretse Ian KHAMA (since 13 July 1998); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government head of government: President Festus G. MOGAE (since 1 April 1998) and Vice President Seretse Ian KHAMA (since 13 July 1998); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president elections: president indirectly elected for a five-year term; election last held 20 October 2004 (next to be held NA 2009); vice president appointed by the president election results: Festus G. MOGAE elected president; percent of National Assembly vote - 52%

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consists of the House of Chiefs (a largely advisory 15-member body consisting of the chiefs of the eight principal tribes, four elected subchiefs, and three members selected by the other 12 members) and the National Assembly (61 seats, 57 members are directly elected by popular vote and four are appointed by the majority party; members serve five-year terms) elections: National Assembly elections last held 30 October 2004 (next to be held October 2009) election results: percent of vote by party - BDP 52%, BNF 26%, BCP 17%, other 5%; seats by party - BDP 44, BNF 12, BCP 1

Judicial branch: High Court; Court of Appeal; Magistrates' Courts (one in each district)

Political parties and leaders: Botswana Democratic Party or BDP [Festus G. MOGAE]; Botswana National Front or BNF [Otswoletse MOUPO]; Botswana Congress Party or BCP [Otlaadisa KOOSALETSE]; Botswana Alliance Movement or BAM [Ephraim Lepetu SETSHWAELO] note: a number of minor parties joined forces in 1999 to form the BAM but did not capture any parliamentary seats; the BAM parties are: the United Action Party [Ephraim Lepetu SETSHWAELO]; the Independence Freedom Party or IFP [Motsamai MPHO]; and the Botswana Progressive Union [D. K. KWELE]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ACP, AfDB, AU, C, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, MIGA, NAM, OPCW, SACU, SADC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Lapologang Caesar LEKOA chancery: 1531-1533 New Hampshire Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036 telephone: [1] (202) 244-4990 FAX: [1] (202) 244-4164

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Joseph HUGGINS embassy: address NA, Gaborone mailing address: Embassy Enclave, P. O. Box 90, Gaborone telephone: [267] 353982 FAX: [267] 312782

Flag description: light blue with a horizontal white-edged black stripe in the center

Economy Botswana

Economy - overview: Botswana has maintained one of the world's highest economic growth rates since independence in 1966. Through fiscal discipline and sound management, Botswana has transformed itself from one of the poorest countries in the world to a middle-income country with a per capita GDP of $9,200 in 2004. Two major investment services rank Botswana as the best credit risk in Africa. Diamond mining has fueled much of the expansion and currently accounts for more than one-third of GDP and for 70-80% of export earnings. Tourism, financial services, subsistence farming, and cattle raising are other key sectors. On the downside, the government must deal with high rates of unemployment and poverty. Unemployment officially is 23.8%, but unofficial estimates place it closer to 40%. HIV/AIDS infection rates are the second highest in the world and threaten Botswana's impressive economic gains. An expected leveling off in diamond mining production overshadow long-term prospects.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $15.05 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 3.5% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $9,200 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 4% industry: 44% (including 36% mining) services: 52% (2003 est.)

Labor force: 264,000 formal sector employees (2000)

Labor force - by occupation: NA

Unemployment rate: 23.8% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 47% (2002 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 7% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 25.5% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $3.735 billion expenditures: $3.743 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: 8.6% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: livestock, sorghum, maize, millet, beans, sunflowers, groundnuts

Industries: diamonds, copper, nickel, salt, soda ash, potash; livestock processing; textiles

Industrial production growth rate: 4.4% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 930 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 1.89 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 1.025 billion kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 16,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Current account balance: $337 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $2.94 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: diamonds, copper, nickel, soda ash, meat, textiles

Exports - partners: European Free Trade Association (EFTA) 87%, Southern African Customs Union (SACU) 7%, Zimbabwe 4% (2000)

Imports: $2.255 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: foodstuffs, machinery, electrical goods, transport equipment, textiles, fuel and petroleum products, wood and paper products, metal and metal products

Imports - partners: Southern African Customs Union (SACU) 74%, EFTA 17%, Zimbabwe 4% (2000)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $5.7 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $531 million (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $73 million (1995)

Currency (code): pula (BWP)

Currency code: BWP

Exchange rates: pulas per US dollar - 4.6929 (2004), 4.9499 (2003), 6.3278 (2002), 5.8412 (2001), 5.1018 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Communications Botswana

Telephones - main lines in use: 142,400 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 435,000 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: the system is expanding with the growth of mobile cellular service and participation in regional development domestic: small system of open-wire lines, microwave radio relay links, and a few radiotelephone communication stations; mobile cellular service is growing fast international: country code - 267; two international exchanges; digital microwave radio relay links to Namibia, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and South Africa; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 8, FM 13, shortwave 4 (2001)

Radios: 252,720 (2000)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (2001)

Televisions: 31,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .bw

Internet hosts: 1,920 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 11 (2001)

Internet users: 60,000 (2002)

Transportation Botswana

Railways: total: 888 km narrow gauge: 888 km 1.067-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 10,217 km paved: 5,619 km unpaved: 4,598 km (1999)

Airports: 85 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 10 2,438 to 3,047 m: 2 1,524 to 2,437 m: 7 914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 75 1,524 to 2,437 m: 3 914 to 1,523 m: 54 under 914 m: 18 (2004 est.)

Military Botswana

Military branches: Botswana Defense Force (includes an Air Wing)

Military service age and obligation: 18 is the apparent age of voluntary military service; the official qualifications for determining minimum age are unknown (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 350,649 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 136,322 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 21,103 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $338.5 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 3.9% (2004)

Transnational Issues Botswana

Disputes - international: commission established with Namibia has yet to resolve small residual disputes along the Caprivi Strip, including the Situngu marshlands along the Linyanti River; downstream Botswana residents protest Namibia's planned construction of the Okavango hydroelectric dam at Popavalle (Popa Falls); Botswana has built electric fences to stem the thousands of Zimbabweans who flee to find work and escape political persecution; Namibia has long supported and in 2004 Zimbabwe dropped objections to plans between Botswana and Zambia to build a bridge over the Zambezi River, thereby de facto recognizing their short, but not clearly delimited Botswana-Zambia boundary

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Bouvet Island

Introduction Bouvet Island

Background: This uninhabited volcanic island is almost entirely covered by glaciers and is difficult to approach. It was discovered in 1739 by a French naval officer after whom the island was named. No claim was made until 1825, when the British flag was raised. In 1928, the UK waived its claim in favor of Norway, which had occupied the island the previous year. In 1971, Bouvet Island and the adjacent territorial waters were designated a nature reserve. Since 1977, Norway has run an automated meteorological station on the island.

Geography Bouvet Island

Location: island in the South Atlantic Ocean, southwest of the Cape of Good Hope (South Africa)

Geographic coordinates: 54 26 S, 3 24 E

Map references: Antarctic Region

Area: total: 58.5 sq km land: 58.5 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: about 0.3 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 29.6 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 4 nm

Climate: antarctic

Terrain: volcanic; coast is mostly inaccessible

Elevation extremes: lowest point: South Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Olav Peak 935 m

Natural resources: none

Land use: arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% (93% ice) (2001)

Irrigated land: 0 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: NA

Environment - current issues: NA

Geography - note: covered by glacial ice; declared a nature reserve

People Bouvet Island

Population: uninhabited (July 2005 est.)

Government Bouvet Island

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Bouvet Island

Dependency status: territory of Norway; administered by the Polar Department of the Ministry of Justice and Police from Oslo

Legal system: the laws of Norway, where applicable, apply

Flag description: the flag of Norway is used

Economy Bouvet Island

Economy - overview: no economic activity; declared a nature reserve

Communications Bouvet Island

Internet country code: .bv

Communications - note: automatic meteorological station

Transportation Bouvet Island

Ports and harbors: none; offshore anchorage only

Military Bouvet Island

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of Norway

Transnational Issues Bouvet Island

Disputes - international: none

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Brazil

Introduction Brazil

Background: Following three centuries under the rule of Portugal, Brazil became an independent nation in 1822. By far the largest and most populous country in South America, Brazil overcame more than half a century of military intervention in the governance of the country when in 1985 the military regime peacefully ceded power to civilian rulers. Brazil continues to pursue industrial and agricultural growth and development of its interior. Exploiting vast natural resources and a large labor pool, it is today South America's leading economic power and a regional leader. Highly unequal income distribution remains a pressing problem.

Geography Brazil

Location: Eastern South America, bordering the Atlantic Ocean

Geographic coordinates: 10 00 S, 55 00 W

Map references: South America

Area: total: 8,511,965 sq km land: 8,456,510 sq km water: 55,455 sq km note: includes Arquipelago de Fernando de Noronha, Atol das Rocas, Ilha da Trindade, Ilhas Martin Vaz, and Penedos de Sao Pedro e Sao Paulo

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than the US

Land boundaries: total: 14,691 km border countries: Argentina 1,224 km, Bolivia 3,400 km, Colombia 1,643 km, French Guiana 673 km, Guyana 1,119 km, Paraguay 1,290 km, Peru 1,560 km, Suriname 597 km, Uruguay 985 km, Venezuela 2,200 km

Coastline: 7,491 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm or to edge of the continental margin

Climate: mostly tropical, but temperate in south

Terrain: mostly flat to rolling lowlands in north; some plains, hills, mountains, and narrow coastal belt

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Pico da Neblina 3,014 m

Natural resources: bauxite, gold, iron ore, manganese, nickel, phosphates, platinum, tin, uranium, petroleum, hydropower, timber

Land use: arable land: 6.96% permanent crops: 0.9% other: 92.15% (2001)

Irrigated land: 26,560 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: recurring droughts in northeast; floods and occasional frost in south

Environment - current issues: deforestation in Amazon Basin destroys the habitat and endangers a multitude of plant and animal species indigenous to the area; there is a lucrative illegal wildlife trade; air and water pollution in Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, and several other large cities; land degradation and water pollution caused by improper mining activities; wetland degradation; severe oil spills

Environment - international agreements: party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: largest country in South America; shares common boundaries with every South American country except Chile and Ecuador

People Brazil

Population: 186,112,794 note: Brazil took a count in August 2000, which reported a population of 169,799,170; that figure was about 3.3% lower than projections by the US Census Bureau, and is close to the implied underenumeration of 4.6% for the 1991 census; estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 26.1% (male 24,789,495/female 23,842,715) 15-64 years: 67.9% (male 62,669,392/female 63,719,631) 65 years and over: 6% (male 4,549,552/female 6,542,009) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 27.81 years male: 27.06 years female: 28.57 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.06% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 16.83 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 6.15 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.03 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.7 male(s)/female total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 29.61 deaths/1,000 live births male: 33.37 deaths/1,000 live births female: 25.66 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 71.69 years male: 67.74 years female: 75.85 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.93 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.7% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 660,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 15,000 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Brazilian(s) adjective: Brazilian

Ethnic groups: white 53.7%, mulatto (mixed white and black) 38.5%, black 6.2%, other (includes Japanese, Arab, Amerindian) 0.9%, unspecified 0.7% (2000 census)

Religions: Roman Catholic (nominal) 73.6%, Protestant 15.4%, Spriritualist 1.3%, Bantu/voodoo 0.3%, other 1.8%, unspecified 0.2%, none 7.4% (2000 census)

Languages: Portuguese (official), Spanish, English, French

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 86.4% male: 86.1% female: 86.6% (2003 est.)

Government Brazil

Country name: conventional long form: Federative Republic of Brazil conventional short form: Brazil local long form: Republica Federativa do Brasil local short form: Brasil

Government type: federative republic

Capital: Brasilia

Administrative divisions: 26 states (estados, singular - estado) and 1 federal district* (distrito federal); Acre, Alagoas, Amapa, Amazonas, Bahia, Ceara, Distrito Federal*, Espirito Santo, Goias, Maranhao, Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul, Minas Gerais, Para, Paraiba, Parana, Pernambuco, Piaui, Rio de Janeiro, Rio Grande do Norte, Rio Grande do Sul, Rondonia, Roraima, Santa Catarina, Sao Paulo, Sergipe, Tocantins

Independence: 7 September 1822 (from Portugal)

National holiday: Independence Day, 7 September (1822)

Constitution: 5 October 1988

Legal system: based on Roman codes; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: voluntary between 16 and 18 years of age and over 70; compulsory over 18 and under 70 years of age; note - military conscripts do not vote

Executive branch: chief of state: President Luiz Inacio LULA DA SILVA (since 1 January 2003); Vice President Jose ALENCAR (since 1 January 2003); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government head of government: President Luiz Inacio LULA DA SILVA (since 1 January 2003); Vice President Jose ALENCAR (since 1 January 2003); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president elections: president and vice president elected on the same ticket by popular vote for four-year terms; election last held 6 October 2002 (next to be held 1 October 2006, with a runoff on 29 October 2006 if necessary); runoff election held 27 October 2002 election results: in runoff election 27 October 2002, Luiz Inacio LULA DA SILVA (PT) elected with 61.3% of the vote; Jose SERRA (PSDB) 38.7%

Legislative branch: bicameral National Congress or Congresso Nacional consists of the Federal Senate or Senado Federal (81 seats; three members from each state and federal district elected according to the principle of majority to serve eight-year terms; one-third elected after a four-year period, two-thirds elected after the next four-year period) and the Chamber of Deputies or Camara dos Deputados (513 seats; members are elected by proportional representation to serve four-year terms) elections: Federal Senate - last held 6 October 2002 for two-thirds of the Senate (next to be held October 2006 for one-third of the Senate); Chamber of Deputies - last held 6 October 2002 (next to be held October 2006) election results: Federal Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PMBD 19, PFL 19, PT 14, PSDB 11, PDT 5, PSB 4, PL 3, PTB 3, PPS 1, PSD 1, PP 1; Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PT 91, PFL 84, PMDB 74, PSDB 71, PP 49, PL 26, PTB 26, PSB 22, PDT 21, PPS 15, PCdoB 12, PRONA 6, PV 5, other 11; note - many congressmen have changed party affiliation since the most recent election

Judicial branch: Supreme Federal Tribunal (11 ministers are appointed for life by the president and confirmed by the Senate); Higher Tribunal of Justice; Regional Federal Tribunals (judges are appointed for life); note - though appointed "for life," judges, like all federal employees, have a mandatory retirement age of 70

Political parties and leaders: Brazilian Democratic Movement Party or PMDB [Federal Deputy Michel TEMER]; Brazilian Labor Party or PTB [Federal Deputy Roberto JEFFERSON]; Brazilian Social Democracy Party or PSDB [Senator Eduardo AZAREDO]; Brazilian Socialist Party or PSB [Federal Deputy Miguel ARRAES]; Communist Party of Brazil or PCdoB [Renato RABELO]; Democratic Labor Party or PDT [Carlos LUPI]; Democratic Socialist Party or PSD [Pedro Miguel SANTANA LOPES]; Green Party or PV [Jose Luiz de Franca PENNA]; Liberal Front Party or PFL [Senator Jorge BORNHAUSEN]; Liberal Party or PL [Federal Deputy Valdemar COSTA Neto]; National Order Reconstruction Party or PRONA [Federal Deputy Dr. Eneas CARNEIRO]; Popular Socialist Party or PPS [Federal Deputy Roberto FREIRE]; Progressive Party or PP [Federal Deputy Pedro CORREA]; Social Christian Party or PSC [Vitor Jorge ABDALA NOSSEIS]; Worker's Party or PT [Jose GENOINO]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Landless Worker's Movement; labor unions and federations; large farmers' associations; religious groups including evangelical christian churches and the Catholic Church

International organization participation: AfDB, BIS, CSN, FAO, G-15, G-24, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, LAES, LAIA, Mercosur, MIGA, MINUSTAH, NAM (observer), NSG, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, RG, UN, UN Security Council (temporary), UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNMIK, UNMIL, UNMISET, UNMOVIC, UNOCI, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Roberto ABDENUR chancery: 3006 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 238-2700 FAX: [1] (202) 238-2827 consulate(s) general: Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, and San Francisco

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador John DANILOVICH embassy: Avenida das Nacoes, Quadra 801, Lote 3, Distrito Federal Cep 70403-900, Brasilia mailing address: Unit 3500, APO AA 34030 telephone: [55] (61) 312-7000 FAX: [55] (61) 225-9136 consulate(s) general: Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo consulate(s): Recife

Flag description: green with a large yellow diamond in the center bearing a blue celestial globe with 27 white five-pointed stars (one for each state and the Federal District) arranged in the same pattern as the night sky over Brazil; the globe has a white equatorial band with the motto ORDEM E PROGRESSO (Order and Progress)

Economy Brazil

Economy - overview: Possessing large and well-developed agricultural, mining, manufacturing, and service sectors, Brazil's economy outweighs that of all other South American countries and is expanding its presence in world markets. From 2001-03 real wages fell and Brazil's economy grew, on average, only 2.2% per year, as the country absorbed a series of domestic and international economic shocks. That Brazil absorbed these shocks without financial collapse is a tribute to the resiliency of the Brazilian economy and the economic program put in place by former President CARDOSO and strengthened by President LULA DA SILVA. In 2004, Brazil enjoyed more robust growth that yielded increases in employment and real wages. The three pillars of the economic program are a floating exchange rate, an inflation-targeting regime, and tight fiscal policy, all reinforced by a series of IMF programs. The currency depreciated sharply in 2001 and 2002, which contributed to a dramatic current account adjustment: in 2003 and 2004, Brazil ran record trade surpluses and recorded its first current account surpluses since 1992. Productivity gains - particularly in agriculture - also contributed to the surge in exports, and Brazil in 2004 surpassed the previous year's record export level and again posted a current account surplus. While economic management has been good, there remain important economic vulnerabilities. The most significant are debt-related: the government's largely domestic debt increased steadily from 1994 to 2003 - straining government finances - before falling as a percentage of GDP in 2004, while Brazil's foreign debt (a mix of private and public debt) is large in relation to Brazil's small (but growing) export base. Another challenge is maintaining economic growth over a period of time to generate employment and make the government debt burden more manageable.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $1.492 trillion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 5.1% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $8,100 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 10.1% industry: 38.6% services: 51.3% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 89 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 20%, industry 14%, services 66% (2003 est.)

Unemployment rate: 11.5% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 22% (1998 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 0.7% highest 10%: 48% (1998)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 60.7 (1998)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 7.6% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 19.8% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $140.6 billion expenditures: $172.4 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004)

Public debt: 52% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: coffee, soybeans, wheat, rice, corn, sugarcane, cocoa, citrus; beef

Industries: textiles, shoes, chemicals, cement, lumber, iron ore, tin, steel, aircraft, motor vehicles and parts, other machinery and equipment

Industrial production growth rate: 6% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 339 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 8.3% hydro: 82.7% nuclear: 4.4% other: 4.6% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 351.9 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 7 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 36.58 billion kWh; note - supplied by Paraguay (2002)

Oil - production: 1.788 million bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 2.199 million bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 13.9 billion bbl (2004 est.)

Natural gas - production: 5.95 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 9.59 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 3.64 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 221.7 billion cu m (2004)

Current account balance: $8 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $95 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: transport equipment, iron ore, soybeans, footwear, coffee, autos

Exports - partners: US 20.8%, Argentina 7.5%, Netherlands 6.1%, China 5.6%, Germany 4.1%, Mexico 4% (2004)

Imports: $61 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery, electrical and transport equipment, chemical products, oil

Imports - partners: US 18.3%, Argentina 8.9%, Germany 8.1%, China 5.9%, Nigeria 5.6%, Japan 4.6% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $52.94 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $219.8 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $30 billion (2002)

Currency (code): real (BRL)

Currency code: BRL

Exchange rates: reals per US dollar - 2.9251 (2004), 3.0771 (2003), 2.9208 (2002), 2.3577 (2001), 1.8301 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Brazil

Telephones - main lines in use: 38.81 million (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 46,373,300 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: good working system domestic: extensive microwave radio relay system and a domestic satellite system with 64 earth stations international: country code - 55; 3 coaxial submarine cables; satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean), 1 Inmarsat (Atlantic Ocean region east), connected by microwave relay system to Mercosur Brazilsat B3 satellite earth station

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1,365, FM 296, shortwave 161 (of which 91 are collocated with AM stations) (1999)

Radios: 71 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 138 (1997)

Televisions: 36.5 million (1997)

Internet country code: .br

Internet hosts: 3,163,349 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 50 (2000)

Internet users: 14.3 million (2002)

Transportation Brazil

Railways: total: 29,412 km (1,567 km electrified) broad gauge: 4,907 km 1.600-m gauge (908 km electrified) standard gauge: 194 km 1.440-m gauge narrow gauge: 23,915 km 1.000-m gauge (581 km electrified) dual gauge: 396 km 1.000-m and 1.600-m gauges (three rails) (78 km electrified) (2004)

Highways: total: 1,724,929 km paved: 94,871 km unpaved: 1,630,058 km (2000)

Waterways: 50,000 km (most in areas remote from industry and population) (2004)

Pipelines: condensate/gas 244 km; gas 10,739 km; liquid petroleum gas 341 km; oil 5,212 km; refined products 4,755 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Gebig, Itaqui, Rio de Janeiro, Rio Grande, San Sebasttiao, Santos, Sepetiba Terminal, Tubarao, Vitoria

Merchant marine: total: 150 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 2,961,431 GRT/4,725,267 DWT by type: bulk carrier 28, cargo 25, chemical tanker 7, combination ore/oil 2, container 7, liquefied gas 12, passenger/cargo 12, petroleum tanker 48, roll on/roll off 9 foreign-owned: 17 (Chile 2, Germany 7, Norway 1, Spain 7) registered in other countries: 8 (2005)

Airports: 4,136 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 698 over 3,047 m: 7 2,438 to 3,047 m: 23 1,524 to 2,437 m: 158 914 to 1,523 m: 461 under 914 m: 49 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 3,438 over 3,047 m: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 78 914 to 1,523 m: 1,579 under 914 m: 1,780 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 417 (2004 est.)

Military Brazil

Military branches: Brazilian Army, Brazilian Navy (includes Naval Air and Marines), Brazilian Air Force (FAB)

Military service age and obligation: 19 years of age for compulsory military service, conscript service obligation - 12 months; 17 years of age for voluntary service (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 19-49: 45,586,036 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 19-49: 33,119,098 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 1,785,930 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $11 billion (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.8% (2004)

Transnational Issues Brazil

Disputes - international: unruly region at convergence of Argentina-Brazil-Paraguay borders is locus of money laundering, smuggling, arms and illegal narcotics trafficking, and fundraising for extremist organizations; uncontested dispute with Uruguay over certain islands in the Quarai/Cuareim and Invernada boundary streams and the resulting tripoint with Argentina; in 2004 Brazil submitted its claims to UNCLOS to extend its maritime continental margin

Illicit drugs: illicit producer of cannabis; minor coca cultivation in the Amazon region, used for domestic consumption; government has a large-scale eradication program to control cannabis; important transshipment country for Bolivian, Colombian, and Peruvian cocaine headed for Europe and the US; also used by traffickers as a way station for narcotics air transshipments between Peru and Colombia; upsurge in drug-related violence and weapons smuggling; important market for Colombian, Bolivian, and Peruvian cocaine; illicit narcotics proceeds earned in Brazil are often laundered through the financial system; significant illicit financial activity in the Tri-Border Area

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@British Indian Ocean Territory

Introduction British Indian Ocean Territory

Background: Established as a territory of the UK in 1965, a number of the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT) islands were transferred to the Seychelles when it attained independence in 1976. Subsequently, BIOT has consisted only of the six main island groups comprising the Chagos Archipelago. The largest and most southerly of the islands, Diego Garcia, contains a joint UK-US naval support facility. All of the remaining islands are uninhabited. Former agricultural workers, earlier residents in the islands, were relocated primarily to Mauritius but also to the Seychelles, between 1967 and 1973. In 2000, a British High Court ruling invalidated the local immigration order that had excluded them from the archipelago, but upheld the special military status of Diego Garcia.

Geography British Indian Ocean Territory

Location: archipelago in the Indian Ocean, south of India, about one-half the way from Africa to Indonesia

Geographic coordinates: 6 00 S, 71 30 E

Map references: Political Map of the World

Area: total: 60 sq km land: 60 sq km water: 0 sq km note: includes the entire Chagos Archipelago

Area - comparative: about 0.3 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 698 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 3 nm exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical marine; hot, humid, moderated by trade winds

Terrain: flat and low (most areas do not exceed four meters in elevation)

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m highest point: unnamed location on Diego Garcia 15 m

Natural resources: coconuts, fish, sugarcane

Land use: arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% (2001)

Irrigated land: 0 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: NA

Environment - current issues: NA

Geography - note: archipelago of 2,300 islands; Diego Garcia, largest and southernmost island, occupies strategic location in central Indian Ocean; island is site of joint US-UK military facility

People British Indian Ocean Territory

Population: no indigenous inhabitants note: approximately 1,200 former agricultural workers resident in the Chagos Archipelago, often referred to as Chagossians or Ilois, were relocated to Mauritius and the Seychelles in the 1960s and 1970s, in November 2000 they were granted the right of return by a British High Court ruling, though no timetable has been set; in 2001, there were approximately 1,500 UK and US military personnel and 2,000 civilian contractors living on the island of Diego Garcia (July 2005 est.)

Government British Indian Ocean Territory

Country name: conventional long form: British Indian Ocean Territory conventional short form: none abbreviation: BIOT

Dependency status: overseas territory of the UK; administered by a commissioner, resident in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London

Legal system: the laws of the UK, where applicable, apply

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952) head of government: Commissioner Tony CROMBIE (since January 2004); Administrator Tony HUMPHRIES (since February 2005); note - both reside in the UK cabinet: NA elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; commissioner and administrator appointed by the monarch

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Flag description: white with six blue wavy horizontal stripes; the flag of the UK is in the upper hoist-side quadrant; the striped section bears a palm tree and yellow crown centered on the outer half of the flag

Economy British Indian Ocean Territory

Economy - overview: All economic activity is concentrated on the largest island of Diego Garcia, where joint UK-US defense facilities are located. Construction projects and various services needed to support the military installations are done by military and contract employees from the UK, Mauritius, the Philippines, and the US. There are no industrial or agricultural activities on the islands. When the Ilois return, they plan to reestablish sugarcane production and fishing.

Electricity - production: NA kWh; note - electricity supplied by the US military

Electricity - consumption: NA kWh

Communications British Indian Ocean Territory

Telephones - main lines in use: NA

Telephone system: general assessment: separate facilities for military and public needs are available domestic: all commercial telephone services are available, including connection to the Internet international: international telephone service is carried by satellite (2000)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 2, shortwave 0 (1998)

Radios: NA

Television broadcast stations: 1 (1997)

Televisions: NA

Internet country code: .io

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)

Transportation British Indian Ocean Territory

Highways: total: NA km paved: short section of paved road between port and airfield on Diego Garcia unpaved: NA km

Ports and harbors: Diego Garcia

Airports: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 1 over 3,047 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military British Indian Ocean Territory

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of the UK; the US lease on Diego Garcia expires in 2016

Transnational Issues British Indian Ocean Territory

Disputes - international: Mauritius and Seychelles claim the Chagos Archipelago and its former inhabitants, who reside chiefly in Mauritius, but in 2001 were granted UK citizenship and the right to repatriation since eviction in 1965; the UK resists the Chagossians' demand for an immediate return to the islands; repatriation is complicated by the exclusive US military lease of Diego Garcia that restricts access to the largest island in the chain

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@British Virgin Islands

Introduction British Virgin Islands

Background: First settled by the Dutch in 1648, the islands were annexed in 1672 by the English. The economy is closely tied to the larger and more populous US Virgin Islands to the west; the US dollar is the legal currency.

Geography British Virgin Islands

Location: Caribbean, between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, east of Puerto Rico

Geographic coordinates: 18 30 N, 64 30 W

Map references: Central America and the Caribbean

Area: total: 153 sq km land: 153 sq km water: 0 sq km note: comprised of 16 inhabited and more than 20 uninhabited islands; includes the island of Anegada

Area - comparative: about 0.9 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 80 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 3 nm exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm

Climate: subtropical; humid; temperatures moderated by trade winds

Terrain: coral islands relatively flat; volcanic islands steep, hilly

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m highest point: Mount Sage 521 m

Natural resources: NEGL

Land use: arable land: 20% permanent crops: 6.67% other: 73.33% (2001)

Irrigated land: NA

Natural hazards: hurricanes and tropical storms (July to October)

Environment - current issues: limited natural fresh water resources (except for a few seasonal streams and springs on Tortola, most of the islands' water supply comes from wells and rainwater catchments)

Geography - note: strong ties to nearby US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico

People British Virgin Islands

Population: 22,643 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 21% (male 2,400/female 2,358) 15-64 years: 73.9% (male 8,607/female 8,115) 65 years and over: 5.1% (male 614/female 549) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 30.9 years male: 31.1 years female: 30.7 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.06% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 14.96 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 4.42 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 10.01 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.02 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.06 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 1.12 male(s)/female total population: 1.05 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 18.05 deaths/1,000 live births male: 21.02 deaths/1,000 live births female: 14.95 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 76.49 years male: 75.41 years female: 77.62 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.72 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: British Virgin Islander(s) adjective: British Virgin Islander

Ethnic groups: black 83%, white, Indian, Asian and mixed

Religions: Protestant 86% (Methodist 33%, Anglican 17%, Church of God 9%, Seventh-Day Adventist 6%, Baptist 4%, Jehovah's Witnesses 2%, other 15%), Roman Catholic 10%, none 2%, other 2% (1991)

Languages: English (official)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 97.8% (1991 est.) male: NA% female: NA%

Government British Virgin Islands

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: British Virgin Islands abbreviation: BVI

Dependency status: overseas territory of the UK; internal self-governing

Government type: NA

Capital: Road Town

Administrative divisions: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Independence: none (overseas territory of the UK)

National holiday: Territory Day, 1 July

Constitution: 1 June 1977

Legal system: English law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor Tom MACAN (since 14 October 2002) head of government: Chief Minister Orlando D. SMITH (since 17 June 2003) cabinet: Executive Council appointed by the governor from members of the Legislative Council elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; governor appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed chief minister by the governor

Legislative branch: unicameral Legislative Council (13 seats; members are elected by direct popular vote, one member from each of 9 electoral districts, four at-large members; members serve four-year terms) elections: last held 16 May 2003 (next to be held NA 2007) election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - NDP 8, VIP 5

Judicial branch: Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court, consisting of the High Court of Justice and the Court of Appeal (one judge of the Supreme Court is a resident of the islands and presides over the High Court); Magistrate's Court; Juvenile Court; Court of Summary Jurisdiction

Political parties and leaders: Concerned Citizens Movement or CCM [Ethlyn SMITH]; National Democratic Party or NDP [Orlando SMITH]; United Party or UP [Gregory MADURO]; Virgin Islands Party or VIP [Ralph T. O'NEAL]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: Caricom (associate), CDB, Interpol (subbureau), IOC, OECS (associate), UNESCO (associate), UPU

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Flag description: blue, with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and the Virgin Islander coat of arms centered in the outer half of the flag; the coat of arms depicts a woman flanked on either side by a vertical column of six oil lamps above a scroll bearing the Latin word VIGILATE (Be Watchful)

Economy British Virgin Islands

Economy - overview: The economy, one of the most stable and prosperous in the Caribbean, is highly dependent on tourism, generating an estimated 45% of the national income. An estimated 350,000 tourists, mainly from the US, visited the islands in 1998. Tourism suffered in 2002 because of the lackluster US economy. In the mid-1980s, the government began offering offshore registration to companies wishing to incorporate in the islands, and incorporation fees now generate substantial revenues. Roughly 400,000 companies were on the offshore registry by yearend 2000. The adoption of a comprehensive insurance law in late 1994, which provides a blanket of confidentiality with regulated statutory gateways for investigation of criminal offenses, is expected to make the British Virgin Islands even more attractive to international business. Livestock raising is the most important agricultural activity; poor soils limit the islands' ability to meet domestic food requirements. Because of traditionally close links with the US Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Islands has used the dollar as its currency since 1959.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $2.498 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 1% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $38,500 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 1.8% industry: 6.2% services: 92% (1996 est.)

Labor force: 12,770 (2004)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture NA%, industry NA%, services NA%

Unemployment rate: 3% (1995)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.5% (2003)

Budget: revenues: $121.5 million expenditures: $115.5 million, including capital expenditures of NA (1997)

Agriculture - products: fruits, vegetables; livestock, poultry; fish

Industries: tourism, light industry, construction, rum, concrete block, offshore financial center

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - production: 36.28 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 33.74 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 420 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Exports: $25.3 million (2002)

Exports - commodities: rum, fresh fish, fruits, animals; gravel, sand

Exports - partners: Virgin Islands (US), Puerto Rico, US

Imports: $187 million (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities: building materials, automobiles, foodstuffs, machinery

Imports - partners: Virgin Islands (US), Puerto Rico, US

Debt - external: $36.1 million (1997)

Economic aid - recipient: NA

Currency (code): US dollar (USD)

Currency code: USD

Exchange rates: the US dollar is used

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Communications British Virgin Islands

Telephones - main lines in use: 11,700 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 8,000 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: worldwide telephone service domestic: NA international: country code - 1-284; submarine cable to Bermuda

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 5, shortwave 0 (2004)

Radios: 9,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (plus one cable company) (1997)

Televisions: 4,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .vg

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 16 (2000)

Internet users: 4,000 (2002)

Transportation British Virgin Islands

Highways: total: 177 km paved: 177 km unpaved: 0 km (2000)

Ports and harbors: Road Town

Merchant marine: total: 1 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 83,825 GRT/155,909 DWT by type: cargo 1 registered in other countries: 7 (2005)

Airports: 3 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 2 914 to 1,523 m: 1 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military British Virgin Islands

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of the UK

Transnational Issues British Virgin Islands

Disputes - international: none

Illicit drugs: transshipment point for South American narcotics destined for the US and Europe; large offshore financial center makes it vulnerable to money laundering

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Brunei

Introduction Brunei

Background: The Sultanate of Brunei's influence peaked between the 15th and 17th centuries when its control extended over coastal areas of northwest Borneo and the southern Philippines. Brunei subsequently entered a period of decline brought on by internal strife over royal succession, colonial expansion of European powers, and piracy. In 1888, Brunei became a British protectorate; independence was achieved in 1984. The same family has ruled Brunei for over six centuries. Brunei benefits from extensive petroleum and natural gas fields, the source of one of the highest per capita GDPs in the developing world.

Geography Brunei

Location: Southeastern Asia, bordering the South China Sea and Malaysia

Geographic coordinates: 4 30 N, 114 40 E

Map references: Southeast Asia

Area: total: 5,770 sq km land: 5,270 sq km water: 500 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Delaware

Land boundaries: total: 381 km border countries: Malaysia 381 km

Coastline: 161 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm or to median line

Climate: tropical; hot, humid, rainy

Terrain: flat coastal plain rises to mountains in east; hilly lowland in west

Elevation extremes: lowest point: South China Sea 0 m highest point: Bukit Pagon 1,850 m

Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas, timber

Land use: arable land: 0.57% permanent crops: 0.76% other: 98.67% (2001)

Irrigated land: 10 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: typhoons, earthquakes, and severe flooding are rare

Environment - current issues: seasonal smoke/haze resulting from forest fires in Indonesia

Environment - international agreements: party to: Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: close to vital sea lanes through South China Sea linking Indian and Pacific Oceans; two parts physically separated by Malaysia; almost an enclave of Malaysia

People Brunei

Population: 372,361 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 28.6% (male 54,342/female 52,084) 15-64 years: 68.4% (male 134,908/female 119,814) 65 years and over: 3% (male 5,301/female 5,912) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 27.04 years male: 27.63 years female: 26.4 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.9% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 19.01 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 3.42 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 3.45 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.13 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.9 male(s)/female total population: 1.09 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 12.61 deaths/1,000 live births male: 15.93 deaths/1,000 live births female: 9.1 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 74.8 years male: 72.36 years female: 77.36 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.3 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: less than 0.1% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: less than 200 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 200 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Bruneian(s) adjective: Bruneian

Ethnic groups: Malay 67%, Chinese 15%, indigenous 6%, other 12%

Religions: Muslim (official) 67%, Buddhist 13%, Christian 10%, indigenous beliefs and other 10%

Languages: Malay (official), English, Chinese

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 93.9% male: 96.3% female: 91.4% (2002)

Government Brunei

Country name: conventional long form: Negara Brunei Darussalam conventional short form: Brunei

Government type: constitutional sultanate

Capital: Bandar Seri Begawan

Administrative divisions: 4 districts (daerah-daerah, singular - daerah); Belait, Brunei and Muara, Temburong, Tutong

Independence: 1 January 1984 (from UK)

National holiday: National Day, 23 February (1984); note - 1 January 1984 was the date of independence from the UK, 23 February 1984 was the date of independence from British protection

Constitution: 29 September 1959 (some provisions suspended under a State of Emergency since December 1962, others since independence on 1 January 1984)

Legal system: based on English common law; for Muslims, Islamic Shari'a law supersedes civil law in a number of areas

Suffrage: none

Executive branch: chief of state: Sultan and Prime Minister Sir HASSANAL Bolkiah (since 5 October 1967); note - the monarch is both the chief of state and head of government head of government: Sultan and Prime Minister Sir HASSANAL Bolkiah (since 5 October 1967); note - the monarch is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: Council of Cabinet Ministers appointed and presided over by the monarch; deals with executive matters; note - there is also a Religious Council (members appointed by the monarch) that advises on religious matters, a Privy Council (members appointed by the monarch) that deals with constitutional matters, and the Council of Succession (members appointed by the monarch) that determines the succession to the throne if the need arises elections: none; the monarch is hereditary

Legislative branch: Legislative Council met on 25 September 2004 for first time in 20 years with 21 members appointed by the Sultan; passed constitutional amendments calling for a 45-seat council with 15 elected members; Sultan dissolved council on 1 September 2005 and appointed a new council with 29 members as of 2 September 2005 elections: last held in March 1962 (date of next election NA)

Judicial branch: Supreme Court (chief justice and judges are sworn in by the monarch for three-year terms)

Political parties and leaders: National Development Party (NDP) [Yassin AFFENDI]; National Unity Party of Brunei (PPKB) [leader NA]; People's Awareness Party (PAKAR) [leader NA] note: parties are small and inactive (2005)

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: APEC, APT, ARF, ASEAN, C, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDB, IFRCS, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO (correspondent), ITU, NAM, OIC, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Pengiran Anak Dato PUTEH chancery: 3520 International Court NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 237-1838 FAX: [1] (202) 885-0560

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Emil SKODON embassy: Third Floor, Teck Guan Plaza, Jalan Sultan, Bandar Seri Begawan mailing address: PSC 470 (BSB), FPO AP 96507 telephone: [673] (2) 229670 FAX: [673] (2) 225293

Flag description: yellow with two diagonal bands of white (top, almost double width) and black starting from the upper hoist side; the national emblem in red is superimposed at the center; the emblem includes a swallow-tailed flag on top of a winged column within an upturned crescent above a scroll and flanked by two upraised hands

Economy Brunei

Economy - overview: This small, well-to-do economy encompasses a mixture of foreign and domestic entrepreneurship, government regulation, welfare measures, and village tradition. Crude oil and natural gas production account for nearly half of GDP. Per capita GDP is far above most other Third World countries, and substantial income from overseas investment supplements income from domestic production. The government provides for all medical services and free education through the university level and subsidizes rice and housing. Brunei's leaders are concerned that steadily increased integration in the world economy will undermine internal social cohesion, although it became a more prominent player by serving as chairman for the 2000 APEC (Asian Pacific Economic Cooperation) forum. Plans for the future include upgrading the labor force, reducing unemployment, strengthening the banking and tourist sectors, and, in general, further widening the economic base beyond oil and gas.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $6.842 billion (2003 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 3.2% (2003 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $23,600 (2003 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 5% industry: 45% services: 50% (2001 est.)

Labor force: 158,000 note: includes foreign workers and military personnel; temporary residents make up about 40% of labor force (2002 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture, forestry, and fishing 10%, production of oil, natural gas, services, and construction 42%, government 48% (1999 est.)

Unemployment rate: 3.2% (2002 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 0.3% (2003 est.)

Budget: revenues: $4.9 billion expenditures: $4.2 billion, including capital expenditures of $1.35 billion (2003 est.)

Agriculture - products: rice, vegetables, fruits, chickens, water buffalo

Industries: petroleum, petroleum refining, liquefied natural gas, construction

Industrial production growth rate: 5% (2002 est.)

Electricity - production: 2.458 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 2.286 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 204,000 bbl/day (2003 est.)

Oil - consumption: 13,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: 199,000 bbl/day (2003)

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 1.255 billion bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - production: 10.35 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 1.35 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 9 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 315 billion cu m (1 January 2002)

Exports: $7.7 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)

Exports - commodities: crude oil, natural gas, refined products

Exports - partners: Japan 38.1%, South Korea 14%, Australia 11.2%, US 8.6%, Thailand 7.9%, Indonesia 5.9%, China 4.5% (2004)

Imports: $5.2 billion c.i.f. (2003)

Imports - commodities: machinery and transport equipment, manufactured goods, food, chemicals

Imports - partners: Singapore 32.7%, Malaysia 21.2%, UK 8.3%, Japan 7.2% (2004)

Debt - external: $0

Economic aid - recipient: NA

Currency (code): Bruneian dollar (BND)

Currency code: BND

Exchange rates: Bruneian dollars per US dollar - 1.6902 (2004), 1.7422 (2003), 1.7906 (2002), 1.7917 (2001), 1.724 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Brunei

Telephones - main lines in use: 90,000 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 137,000 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: service throughout the country is excellent; international service is good to East Asia, Europe, and the US domestic: every service available international: country code - 673; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Indian Ocean and 1 Pacific Ocean); digital submarine cable links to Malaysia, the Philippines, and Singapore (2001)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 3, FM 10, shortwave 0 (1998)

Radios: 329,000 (1998)

Television broadcast stations: 2 (1997)

Televisions: 201,900 (1998)

Internet country code: .bn

Internet hosts: 6,409 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 2 (2000)

Internet users: 35,000 (2002)

Transportation Brunei

Highways: total: 2,525 km paved: 2,525 km unpaved: 0 km (2000)

Waterways: 209 km (navigable by craft drawing less than 1.2 m) (2004)

Pipelines: gas 665 km; oil 439 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Lumut, Muara, Seria

Merchant marine: total: 8 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 465,937 GRT/413,393 DWT by type: liquefied gas 8 foreign-owned: 8 (United Kingdom 8) (2005)

Airports: 2 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 1 over 3,047 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 3 (2004 est.)

Military Brunei

Military branches: Royal Brunei Armed Forces: Royal Brunei Land Forces, Royal Brunei Navy, Royal Brunei Air Force

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age (est.) (2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 103,885 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: approx. 85,045 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 3,478 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $290.7 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 5.1% (2004)

Transnational Issues Brunei

Disputes - international: in 2003 Brunei and Malaysia ceased gas and oil exploration in their disputed offshore and deepwater seabeds and negotiations have stalemated prompting consideration of international legal adjudication; Malaysia's land boundary with Brunei around Limbang is in dispute; Brunei established an exclusive economic fishing zone encompassing Louisa Reef in southern Spratly Islands in 1984 but makes no public territorial claim to the offshore reefs; the 2002 "Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea" has eased tensions in the Spratly Islands but falls short of a legally binding "code of conduct" desired by several of the disputants

Illicit drugs: drug trafficking and illegally importing controlled substances are serious offenses in Brunei and carry a mandatory death penalty

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Bulgaria

Introduction Bulgaria

Background: The Bulgars, a Central Asian Turkic tribe, merged with the local Slavic inhabitants in the late 7th century to form the first Bulgarian state. In succeeding centuries, Bulgaria struggled with the Byzantine Empire to assert its place in the Balkans, but by the end of the 14th century the country was overrun by the Ottoman Turks. Northern Bulgaria attained autonomy in 1878 and all of Bulgaria became independent in 1908. Having fought on the losing side in both World Wars, Bulgaria fell within the Soviet sphere of influence and became a People's Republic in 1946. Communist domination ended in 1990, when Bulgaria held its first multiparty election since World War II and began the contentious process of moving toward political democracy and a market economy while combating inflation, unemployment, corruption, and crime. Today, reforms and democratization keep Bulgaria on a path toward eventual integration into the EU. The country joined NATO in 2004.

Geography Bulgaria

Location: Southeastern Europe, bordering the Black Sea, between Romania and Turkey

Geographic coordinates: 43 00 N, 25 00 E

Map references: Europe

Area: total: 110,910 sq km land: 110,550 sq km water: 360 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly larger than Tennessee

Land boundaries: total: 1,808 km border countries: Greece 494 km, Macedonia 148 km, Romania 608 km, Serbia and Montenegro 318 km, Turkey 240 km

Coastline: 354 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate: temperate; cold, damp winters; hot, dry summers

Terrain: mostly mountains with lowlands in north and southeast

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Black Sea 0 m highest point: Musala 2,925 m

Natural resources: bauxite, copper, lead, zinc, coal, timber, arable land

Land use: arable land: 40.02% permanent crops: 1.92% other: 58.06% (2001)

Irrigated land: 8,000 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: earthquakes, landslides

Environment - current issues: air pollution from industrial emissions; rivers polluted from raw sewage, heavy metals, detergents; deforestation; forest damage from air pollution and resulting acid rain; soil contamination from heavy metals from metallurgical plants and industrial wastes

Environment - international agreements: party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Sulfur 94

Geography - note: strategic location near Turkish Straits; controls key land routes from Europe to Middle East and Asia

People Bulgaria

Population: 7,450,349 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 14.1% (male 539,005/female 512,762) 15-64 years: 68.7% (male 2,516,368/female 2,599,524) 65 years and over: 17.2% (male 531,008/female 751,682) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 40.66 years male: 38.59 years female: 42.66 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: -0.89% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 9.66 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 14.26 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -4.3 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.97 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.71 male(s)/female total population: 0.93 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 20.55 deaths/1,000 live births male: 24.31 deaths/1,000 live births female: 16.56 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 72.03 years male: 68.41 years female: 75.87 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.38 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: less than 0.1% - note - no country specific models provided (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 346 (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 100 (2001 est.)

Nationality: noun: Bulgarian(s) adjective: Bulgarian

Ethnic groups: Bulgarian 83.9%, Turk 9.4%, Roma 4.7%, other 2% (including Macedonian, Armenian, Tatar, Circassian) (2001 census)

Religions: Bulgarian Orthodox 82.6%, Muslim 12.2%, other Christian 1.2%, other 4% (2001 census)

Languages: Bulgarian 84.5%, Turkish 9.6%, Roma 4.1%, other and unspecified 1.8% (2001 census)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 98.6% male: 99.1% female: 98.2% (2003 est.)

Government Bulgaria

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Bulgaria conventional short form: Bulgaria

Government type: parliamentary democracy

Capital: Sofia

Administrative divisions: 28 provinces (oblasti, singular - oblast); Blagoevgrad, Burgas, Dobrich, Gabrovo, Khaskovo, Kurdzhali, Kyustendil, Lovech, Montana, Pazardzhik, Pernik, Pleven, Plovdiv, Razgrad, Ruse, Shumen, Silistra, Sliven, Smolyan, Sofiya, Sofiya-Grad, Stara Zagora, Turgovishte, Varna, Veliko Turnovo, Vidin, Vratsa, Yambol

Independence: 3 March 1878 (as an autonomous principality within the Ottoman Empire); 22 September 1908 (complete independence from the Ottoman Empire)

National holiday: Liberation Day, 3 March (1878)

Constitution: adopted 12 July 1991

Legal system: civil law and criminal law based on Roman law; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Georgi PURVANOV (since 22 January 2002); Vice President Angel MARIN (since 22 January 2002) head of government: Prime Minister Sergei STANISHEV (since 16 August 2005); Deputy Prime Minister Ivaylo KALFIN (since 16 August 2005) cabinet: Council of Ministers nominated by the prime minister and elected by the National Assembly elections: president and vice president elected on the same ticket by popular vote for five-year terms; election last held 11 and 18 November 2001 (next to be held NA 2006); chairman of the Council of Ministers (prime minister) nominated by the president and elected by the National Assembly; deputy prime ministers nominated by the prime minister and elected by the National Assembly election results: Georgi PURVANOV elected president; percent of vote - Georgi PURVANOV 54.13%, Petar STOYANOV 45.87%; Sergei STANISHEV elected prime minister, result of legislative vote - 168 to 67

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Narodno Sobranie (240 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms) elections: last held 25 June 2005 (next to be held June 2009) election results: percent of vote by party - CfB 31.1%, NMS2 19.9%, MRF 12.7%, ATAKA 8.2%, UDF 7.7%, DSB 6.5%, BPU 5.2%; seats by party - CfB 83, NMS2 53, MRF 33, ATAKA 21, UDF 20, DSB 17, BPU 13

Judicial branch: Supreme Administrative Court; Supreme Court of Cassation; Constitutional Court (12 justices appointed or elected for nine-year terms); Supreme Judicial Council (consists of the chairmen of the two Supreme Courts, the Chief Prosecutor, and 22 other members; responsible for appointing the justices, prosecutors, and investigating magistrates in the justice system; members of the Supreme Judicial Council elected for five-year terms, 11 elected by the National Assembly and 11 by bodies of the judiciary)

Political parties and leaders: Attack National Union [Volen Siderov]; ATAKA (Attack Coalition) (coalition of parties headed by the Attack National Union); Bulgarian Agrarian National Union-People's Union or BANU [Anastasia MOZER]; Bulgarian People's Union or BPU (coalition of UFD, IMRO, and BANU); Bulgarian Socialist Party or BSP [Sergei STANISHEV]; Coalition for Bulgaria or CfB (coalition of parties dominated by BSP) [Sergei STANISHEV]; Democrats for a Strong Bulgaria or DSB [Ivan KOSTOV]; Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization or IMRO [Krasimir KARAKACHANOV]; Movement for Rights and Freedoms or MRF [Ahmed DOGAN]; National Movement for Simeon II or NMS2 [Simeon SAXE-COBURG-GOTHA]; New Time [Emil KOSHLUKOV]; Union of Democratic Forces or UDF [Nadezhda MIKHAYLOVA]; Union of Free Democrats or UFD [Stefan SOFIYANSKI]; United Democratic Forces or UtDF (a coalition of center-right parties dominated by UDF)

Political pressure groups and leaders: Confederation of Independent Trade Unions of Bulgaria or CITUB; Podkrepa Labor Confederation; numerous regional, ethnic, and national interest groups with various agendas

International organization participation: ACCT, Australia Group, BIS, BSEC, CE, CEI, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, EU (applicant), FAO, G- 9, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IFC, IFRCS, IHO (pending member), ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MIGA, NAM (guest), NATO, NSG, OAS (observer), OPCW, OSCE, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNMEE, UNMIK, UNMIL, UPU, WCL, WCO, WEU (associate affiliate), WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Elena B. POPTODOROVA chancery: 1621 22nd Street NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 387-0174 FAX: [1] (202) 234-7973 consulate(s) general: Chicago and New York consulate(s): Los Angeles

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador James William PARDEW embassy: 16 Kozyak Street, Sofia 1407 mailing address: American Embassy Sofia, Department of State, 5740 Sofia Place, Washington, DC 20521-5740 telephone: [359] (2) 937-5100 FAX: [359] (2) 937-5230

Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of white (top), green, and red; note - the national emblem, formerly on the hoist side of the white stripe, has been removed

Economy Bulgaria

Economy - overview: Bulgaria, a former communist country striving to enter the European Union, has experienced macroeconomic stability and strong growth since a major economic downturn in 1996 led to the fall of the then socialist government. As a result, the government became committed to economic reform and responsible fiscal planning. Minerals, including coal, copper, and zinc play an important role in industry. In 1997, macroeconomic stability was reinforced by the imposition of a fixed exchange rate of the lev against the German D-mark and the negotiation of an IMF standby agreement. Low inflation and steady progress on structural reforms improved the business environment; Bulgaria has averaged 4% growth since 2000 and has begun to attract significant amounts of foreign direct investment. Corruption in the public administration, a weak judiciary, and the presence of organized crime remain the largest challenges for Bulgaria.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $61.63 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 5.3% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $8,200 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 11.5% industry: 30.1% services: 58.4% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 3.398 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 11%, industry 32.7%, services 56.3% (3rd quarter 2004 est.)

Unemployment rate: 12.7% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 13.4% (2002 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 4.5% highest 10%: 22.8% (1997)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 26.4 (2001)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 6.1% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 18.6% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $9.67 billion expenditures: $9.619 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: 41.9% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: vegetables, fruits, tobacco, livestock, wine, wheat, barley, sunflowers, sugar beets

Industries: electricity, gas and water; food, beverages and tobacco; machinery and equipment, base metals, chemical products, coke, refined petroleum, nuclear fuel

Industrial production growth rate: 5.2% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 43.07 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 47.8% hydro: 8.1% nuclear: 44.1% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 32.71 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 8.3 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 960 million kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 603 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 94,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 8.1 million bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - production: 4 million cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 5.804 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 5.8 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 3.724 billion cu m (1 January 2002)

Current account balance: $682.9 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $9.134 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: clothing, footwear, iron and steel, machinery and equipment, fuels

Exports - partners: Italy 13.1%, Germany 11.6%, Turkey 9.3%, Belgium 6.1%, Greece 5.6%, US 5.3%, France 4.9% (2004)

Imports: $12.23 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment; metals and ores; chemicals and plastics; fuels, minerals, and raw materials

Imports - partners: Germany 15.1%, Italy 10.2%, Russia 7.9%, Greece 7.5%, Turkey 6.9%, France 4.4% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $7.526 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $16.1 billion (November 2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $300 million (2000 est.)

Currency (code): lev (BGL)

Currency code: BGN

Exchange rates: leva per US dollar - 1.5751 (2004), 1.7327 (2003), 2.077 (2002), 2.1847 (2001), 2.1233 (2000) note: on 5 July 1999, the lev was redenominated; the post-5 July 1999 lev is equal to 1,000 of the pre-5 July 1999 lev

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Bulgaria

Telephones - main lines in use: 2,868,200 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 2,597,500 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: extensive but antiquated domestic: more than two-thirds of the lines are residential; telephone service is available in most villages; a fairly modern digital cable trunk line now connects switching centers in most of the regions, the others are connected by digital microwave radio relay international: country code - 359; direct dialing to 58 countries; satellite earth stations - 1 Intersputnik (Atlantic Ocean region); 2 Intelsat (Atlantic and Indian Ocean regions)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 31, FM 63, shortwave 2 (2001)

Radios: 4.51 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 39 (plus 1,242 repeaters) (2001)

Televisions: 3.31 million (1997)

Internet country code: .bg

Internet hosts: 53,421 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 200 (2001)

Internet users: 630,000 (2002)

Transportation Bulgaria

Railways: total: 4,294 km standard gauge: 4,049 km 1.435-m gauge (2,710 km electrified) narrow gauge: 245 km 0.760-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 37,077 km paved: 34,111 km (including 328 km of expressways) unpaved: 2,966 km (2002)

Waterways: 470 km (2004)

Pipelines: gas 2,425 km; oil 339 km; refined products 156 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Burgas, Varna

Merchant marine: total: 64 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 757,972 GRT/1,115,238 DWT by type: bulk carrier 34, cargo 13, chemical tanker 4, container 6, passenger/cargo 1, petroleum tanker 3, roll on/roll off 3 registered in other countries: 45 (2005)

Airports: 213 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 128 over 3,047 m: 1 2,438 to 3,047 m: 19 1,524 to 2,437 m: 15 914 to 1,523 m: 1 under 914 m: 92 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 85 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 914 to 1,523 m: 11 under 914 m: 72 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Bulgaria

Military branches: Ground Forces, Naval Forces, Air and Air Defense Forces

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service; conscript service obligation - 9 months (2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 1,661,211 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 1,302,037 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 51,023 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $356 million (FY02)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 2.6% (2003)

Transnational Issues Bulgaria

Disputes - international: none

Illicit drugs: major European transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin and, to a lesser degree, South American cocaine for the European market; limited producer of precursor chemicals; some money laundering of drug-related proceeds through financial institutions

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Burkina Faso

Introduction Burkina Faso

Background: Burkina Faso (formerly Upper Volta) achieved independence from France in 1960. Repeated military coups during the 1970s and 1980s were followed by multiparty elections in the early 1990s. Burkina Faso's high population density and limited natural resources result in poor economic prospects for the majority of its citizens. Recent unrest in Cote d'Ivoire and northern Ghana has hindered the ability of several hundred thousand seasonal Burkinabe farm workers to find employment in neighboring countries.

Geography Burkina Faso

Location: Western Africa, north of Ghana

Geographic coordinates: 13 00 N, 2 00 W

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 274,200 sq km land: 273,800 sq km water: 400 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly larger than Colorado

Land boundaries: total: 3,193 km border countries: Benin 306 km, Cote d'Ivoire 584 km, Ghana 549 km, Mali 1,000 km, Niger 628 km, Togo 126 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: tropical; warm, dry winters; hot, wet summers

Terrain: mostly flat to dissected, undulating plains; hills in west and southeast

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Mouhoun (Black Volta) River 200 m highest point: Tena Kourou 749 m

Natural resources: manganese, limestone, marble; small deposits of gold, phosphates, pumice, salt

Land use: arable land: 14.43% permanent crops: 0.19% other: 85.38% (2001)

Irrigated land: 250 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: recurring droughts

Environment - current issues: recent droughts and desertification severely affecting agricultural activities, population distribution, and the economy; overgrazing; soil degradation; deforestation

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: landlocked savanna cut by the three principal rivers of the Black, Red, and White Voltas

People Burkina Faso

Population: 13,925,313 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 46% (male 3,213,436/female 3,193,253) 15-64 years: 51.2% (male 3,487,201/female 3,635,673) 65 years and over: 2.8% (male 164,418/female 231,332) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 16.82 years male: 16.43 years female: 17.22 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.53% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 44.17 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 18.86 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.71 male(s)/female total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 97.57 deaths/1,000 live births male: 105.55 deaths/1,000 live births female: 89.34 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 48.45 years male: 46.96 years female: 49.99 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 6.23 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 4.2% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 300,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 29,000 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: very high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne disease: malaria is a high risk in some locations water contact disease: schistosomiasis respiratory disease: meningococcal meningitis (2004)

Nationality: noun: Burkinabe (singular and plural) adjective: Burkinabe

Ethnic groups: Mossi over 40%, Gurunsi, Senufo, Lobi, Bobo, Mande, Fulani

Religions: indigenous beliefs 40%, Muslim 50%, Christian (mainly Roman Catholic) 10%

Languages: French (official), native African languages belonging to Sudanic family spoken by 90% of the population

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 26.6% male: 36.9% female: 16.6% (2003 est.)

Government Burkina Faso

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Burkina Faso former: Upper Volta, Republic of Upper Volta

Government type: parliamentary republic

Capital: Ouagadougou

Administrative divisions: 45 provinces; Bale, Bam, Banwa, Bazega, Bougouriba, Boulgou, Boulkiemde, Comoe, Ganzourgou, Gnagna, Gourma, Houet, Ioba, Kadiogo, Kenedougou, Komondjari, Kompienga, Kossi, Koulpelogo, Kouritenga, Kourweogo, Leraba, Loroum, Mouhoun, Namentenga, Nahouri, Nayala, Noumbiel, Oubritenga, Oudalan, Passore, Poni, Sanguie, Sanmatenga, Seno, Sissili, Soum, Sourou, Tapoa, Tuy, Yagha, Yatenga, Ziro, Zondoma, Zoundweogo

Independence: 5 August 1960 (from France)

National holiday: Republic Day, 11 December (1958)

Constitution: 2 June 1991 approved by referendum, 11 June 1991 formally adopted; amended April 2000

Legal system: based on French civil law system and customary law

Suffrage: universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Blaise COMPAORE (since 15 October 1987) head of government: Prime Minister Ernest Paramanga YONLI (since 6 November 2000) cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president on the recommendation of the prime minister elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; election last held 15 November 1998 (next to be held NA 2005); in April 2000, the constitution was amended reducing the presidential term from seven to five years, enforceable as of 2005, and allowing the president to be reelected only once; it is unclear whether this amendment will be applied retroactively or not; prime minister appointed by the president with the consent of the legislature election results: Blaise COMPAORE reelected president with 87.5% percent of the vote

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (111 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) elections: National Assembly election last held 5 May 2002 (next to be held May 2007) election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - CDP 57, RDA-ADF 17, PDP/PS 10, CFD 5, PAI 5, others 17

Judicial branch: Supreme Court; Appeals Court

Political parties and leaders: African Democratic Rally-Alliance for Democracy and Federation or RDA-ADF [Herman YAMEOGO]; Confederation for Federation and Democracy or CFD [Amadou Diemdioda DICKO]; Congress for Democracy and Progress or CDP [Roch Marc-Christian KABORE]; Movement for Tolerance and Progress or MTP [Nayabtigungou Congo KABORE]; Party for African Independence or PAI [Philippe OUEDRAOGO]; Party for Democracy and Progress or PDP [Joseph KI-ZERBO]; Socialist Party or PS [leader NA]; Union of Greens for the Development of Burkina Faso or UVDB [Ram OVEDRAGO]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Burkinabe General Confederation of Labor or CGTB; Burkinabe Movement for Human Rights or MBDHP; Group of 14 February; National Confederation of Burkinabe Workers or CNTB; National Organization of Free Unions or ONSL; watchdog/political action groups throughout the country in both organizations and communities

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, ECOWAS, Entente, FAO, FZ, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ITU, MIGA, MONUC, NAM, OIC, ONUB, OPCW, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNOCI, UPU, WADB (regional), WAEMU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Tertius ZONGO chancery: 2340 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 332-5577 FAX: [1] (202) 667-1882

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Anthony HOLMES embassy: 602 Avenue Raoul Follereau, Koulouba, Secteur 4 mailing address: 01 B. P. 35, Ouagadougou 01; pouch mail - U. S. Department of State, 2440 Ouagadougou Place, Washington, DC 20521-2440 telephone: [226] 306723 FAX: [226] 303890

Flag description: two equal horizontal bands of red (top) and green with a yellow five-pointed star in the center; uses the popular pan-African colors of Ethiopia

Economy Burkina Faso

Economy - overview: One of the poorest countries in the world, landlocked Burkina Faso has few natural resources and a weak industrial base. About 90% of the population is engaged in subsistence agriculture, which is vulnerable to harsh climatic conditions. Cotton is the key crop and the government has joined with other cotton producing countries in the region to lobby for improved access to Western markets. GDP growth has largely been driven by increases in world cotton prices. Industry remains dominated by unprofitable government-controlled corporations. Following the African franc currency devaluation in January 1994 the government updated its development program in conjunction with international agencies; exports and economic growth have increased. The government devolved macroeconomic policy and inflation targeting to the West African regional central bank (BCEAO), but maintains control over microeconomic policies, including reducing the trade deficit and implementing reforms to encourage private investment. The bitter internal crisis in neighboring Cote d'Ivoire continues to hurt trade and industrial prospects and deepens the need for international assistance.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $15.74 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 4.8% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,200 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 39.5% industry: 19.3% services: 41.3% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 5 million note: a large part of the male labor force migrates annually to neighboring countries for seasonal employment (2003)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 90% (2000 est.)

Unemployment rate: NA%

Population below poverty line: 45% (2003 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2% highest 10%: 46.8% (1994)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 48.2 (1994)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.4% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 29.1% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $695.2 million expenditures: $876.3 million, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: cotton, peanuts, shea nuts, sesame, sorghum, millet, corn, rice; livestock

Industries: cotton lint, beverages, agricultural processing, soap, cigarettes, textiles, gold

Industrial production growth rate: 14% (2001 est.)

Electricity - production: 361 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 69.9% hydro: 30.1% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 335.7 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 8,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Current account balance: $-471.7 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $418.6 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: cotton, livestock, gold

Exports - partners: China 32.1%, Singapore 11.5%, Ghana 4.7%, Bangladesh 4.3% (2004)

Imports: $866.3 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: capital goods, foodstuffs, petroleum

Imports - partners: France 29.3%, Cote d'Ivoire 16%, Togo 9.8% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $474.9 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $1.3 billion (2000)

Economic aid - recipient: $484.1 million (1995)

Currency (code): Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XOF); note - responsible authority is the Central Bank of the West African States

Currency code: XOF

Exchange rates: Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XOF) per US dollar - 528.29 (2004), 581.2 (2003), 696.99 (2002), 733.04 (2001), 711.98 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Burkina Faso

Telephones - main lines in use: 65,400 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 227,000 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: all services only fair domestic: microwave radio relay, open-wire, and radiotelephone communication stations international: country code - 226; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 3, FM 17, shortwave 3 (2002)

Radios: 394,020 (2000)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (2002)

Televisions: 131,340 (2002)

Internet country code: .bf

Internet hosts: 442 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2002)

Internet users: 48,000 (2003)

Transportation Burkina Faso

Railways: total: 622 km narrow gauge: 622 km 1.000-m gauge note:: another 660 km of this railway extends into Cote D'Ivoire (2004)

Highways: total: 12,506 km paved: 2,001 km unpaved: 10,505 km (1999)

Airports: 33 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 2 over 3,047 m: 1 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 31 1,524 to 2,437 m: 3 914 to 1,523 m: 11 under 914 m: 17 (2004 est.)

Military Burkina Faso

Military branches: Army, Air Force, National Gendarmerie (2005)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for compulsory military service; 20 years of age for voluntary military service (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 2,664,572 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 1,323,548 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $64.2 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.3% (2004)

Transnational Issues Burkina Faso

Disputes - international: two villages are in dispute along the border with Benin; Benin accuses Burkina Faso of moving boundary pillars; Burkina Faso border regions remain a staging area for Liberia and Cote d'Ivoire rebels and an asylum for refugees caught in local fighting; the Ivoirian Government accuses Burkina Faso of sheltering Ivoirian rebels

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Burma

Introduction Burma

Background: Britain conquered Burma over a period of 62 years (1824-1886) and incorporated it into its Indian Empire. Burma was administered as a province of India until 1937 when it became a separate, self-governing colony; independence from the Commonwealth was attained in 1948. Gen. NE WIN dominated the government from 1962 to 1988, first as military ruler, then as self-appointed president, and later as political kingpin. Despite multiparty legislative elections in 1990 that resulted in the main opposition party - the National League for Democracy (NLD) - winning a landslide victory, the ruling junta refused to hand over power. NLD leader and Nobel Peace Prize recipient AUNG SAN SUU KYI, who was under house arrest from 1989 to 1995 and 2000 to 2002, was imprisoned in May 2003 and is currently under house arrest. In December 2004, the junta announced it was extending her detention for at least an additional year. Her supporters, as well as all those who promote democracy and improved human rights, are routinely harassed or jailed.

Geography Burma

Location: Southeastern Asia, bordering the Andaman Sea and the Bay of Bengal, between Bangladesh and Thailand

Geographic coordinates: 22 00 N, 98 00 E

Map references: Southeast Asia

Area: total: 678,500 sq km land: 657,740 sq km water: 20,760 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Texas

Land boundaries: total: 5,876 km border countries: Bangladesh 193 km, China 2,185 km, India 1,463 km, Laos 235 km, Thailand 1,800 km

Coastline: 1,930 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

Climate: tropical monsoon; cloudy, rainy, hot, humid summers (southwest monsoon, June to September); less cloudy, scant rainfall, mild temperatures, lower humidity during winter (northeast monsoon, December to April)

Terrain: central lowlands ringed by steep, rugged highlands

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Andaman Sea 0 m highest point: Hkakabo Razi 5,881 m

Natural resources: petroleum, timber, tin, antimony, zinc, copper, tungsten, lead, coal, some marble, limestone, precious stones, natural gas, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 15.19% permanent crops: 0.97% other: 83.84% (2001)

Irrigated land: 15,920 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: destructive earthquakes and cyclones; flooding and landslides common during rainy season (June to September); periodic droughts

Environment - current issues: deforestation; industrial pollution of air, soil, and water; inadequate sanitation and water treatment contribute to disease

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94 signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: strategic location near major Indian Ocean shipping lanes

People Burma

Population: 42,909,464 note: estimates for this country take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 27.2% (male 5,967,487/female 5,717,795) 15-64 years: 67.8% (male 14,448,887/female 14,641,419) 65 years and over: 5% (male 939,092/female 1,194,784) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 26.14 years male: 25.57 years female: 26.72 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.42% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 18.11 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 12.15 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -1.8 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.99 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.79 male(s)/female total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 67.24 deaths/1,000 live births male: 73.11 deaths/1,000 live births female: 61.03 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 60.7 years male: 57.8 years female: 63.78 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.01 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 1.2% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 330,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 20,000 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: very high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne diseases: dengue fever and malaria are high risks in some locations (2004)

Nationality: noun: Burmese (singular and plural) adjective: Burmese

Ethnic groups: Burman 68%, Shan 9%, Karen 7%, Rakhine 4%, Chinese 3%, Indian 2%, Mon 2%, other 5%

Religions: Buddhist 89%, Christian 4% (Baptist 3%, Roman Catholic 1%), Muslim 4%, animist 1%, other 2%

Languages: Burmese, minority ethnic groups have their own languages

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 85.3% male: 89.2% female: 81.4% (2002)

Government Burma

Country name: conventional long form: Union of Burma conventional short form: Burma local long form: Pyidaungzu Myanma Naingngandaw (translated by the US Government as Union of Myanma and by the Burmese as Union of Myanmar) local short form: Myanma Naingngandaw former: Socialist Republic of the Union of Burma note: since 1989 the military authorities in Burma have promoted the name Myanmar as a conventional name for their state; this decision was not approved by any sitting legislature in Burma, and the US Government did not adopt the name, which is a derivative of the Burmese short-form name Myanma Naingngandaw

Government type: military junta

Capital: Rangoon (government refers to the capital as Yangon)

Administrative divisions: 7 divisions (taing-myar, singular - taing) and 7 states (pyi ne-myar, singular - pyi ne) : divisions: Ayeyarwady, Bago, Magway, Mandalay, Sagaing, Tanintharyi, Yangon : states: Chin State, Kachin State, Kayin State, Kayah State, Mon State, Rakhine State, Shan State

Independence: 4 January 1948 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day, 4 January (1948); Union Day, 12 February (1947)

Constitution: 3 January 1974; suspended since 18 September 1988; national convention convened in 1993 to draft a new constitution but collapsed in 1996; reconvened in 2004 but does not include participation of democratic opposition

Legal system: has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Chairman of the State Peace and Development Council Sr. Gen. THAN SHWE (since 23 April 1992) head of government: Prime Minister, Gen SOE WIN (since 19 October 2004) cabinet: State Peace and Development Council (SPDC); military junta, so named 15 November 1997, which initially assumed power 18 September 1988 under the name State Law and Order Restoration Council (SLORC); the SPDC oversees the cabinet elections: none

Legislative branch: unicameral People's Assembly or Pyithu Hluttaw (485 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms) elections: last held 27 May 1990, but Assembly never allowed by junta to convene election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - NLD 392 (opposition), SNLD 23 (opposition), NUP 10 (pro-government), other 60

Judicial branch: remnants of the British-era legal system are in place, but there is no guarantee of a fair public trial; the judiciary is not independent of the executive

Political parties and leaders: National League for Democracy or NLD [AUNG SHWE, chairman, AUNG SAN SUU KYI, general secretary]; National Unity Party or NUP (pro-government) [THA KYAW]; Shan Nationalities League for Democracy or SNLD [KHUN HTUN OO]; and other smaller parties

Political pressure groups and leaders: National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma or NCGUB (self-proclaimed government in exile) ["Prime Minister" Dr. SEIN WIN] consists of individuals, some legitimately elected to the People's Assembly in 1990 (the group fled to a border area and joined insurgents in December 1990 to form parallel government in exile); Kachin Independence Army or KIA; Karen National Union or KNU; several Shan factions; United Wa State Army or UWSA; Union Solidarity and Development Association or USDA (pro-government, a social and political organization) [THAN AUNG, general secretary]

International organization participation: APT, ARF, AsDB, ASEAN, CP, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ITU, NAM, OPCW (signatory), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: vacant chancery: 2300 S Street NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 332-9044 FAX: [1] (202) 332-9046 consulate(s) general: New York

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Charge d'Affaires Carmen M. MARTINEZ embassy: 581 Merchant Street, Rangoon (GPO 521) mailing address: Box B, APO AP 96546 telephone: [95] (1) 379 880, 379 881 FAX: [95] (1) 256 018

Flag description: red with a blue rectangle in the upper hoist-side corner bearing, 14 white five-pointed stars encircling a cogwheel containing a stalk of rice; the 14 stars represent the 7 administrative divisions and 7 states

Economy Burma

Economy - overview: Burma is a resource-rich country that suffers from government controls, inefficient economic policies, and abject rural poverty. The junta took steps in the early 1990s to liberalize the economy after decades of failure under the "Burmese Way to Socialism", but those efforts have since stalled and some of the liberalization measures have been rescinded. Burma has been unable to achieve monetary or fiscal stability, resulting in an economy that suffers from serious macroeconomic imbalances - including inflation and multiple official exchange rates that overvalue the Burmese kyat. In addition, most overseas development assistance ceased after the junta began to suppress the democracy movement in 1988 and subsequently ignored the results of the 1990 legislative elections. Economic sanctions against Burma by the United States - including a ban on imports of Burmese products and a ban on provision of financial services by US persons in response to the government of Burma's attack in May 2003 on AUNG SAN SUU KYI and her convoy - further slowed the inflow of foreign exchange. Official statistics are inaccurate. Published statistics on foreign trade are greatly understated because of the size of the black market and unofficial border trade - often estimated to be one to two times the size of the official economy. Though the Burmese government has good economic relations with its neighbors, a better investment climate and an improved political situation are needed to promote foreign investment, exports, and tourism. In February 2003, a major banking crisis hit the country's 20 private banks, shutting them down and disrupting the economy. As of January 2004, the largest private banks remained moribund, leaving the private sector with little formal access to credit.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $74.3 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: -1.3% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,700 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 56.6% industry: 8.8% services: 34.5% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 27.01 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 70%, industry 7%, services 23% (2001 est.)

Unemployment rate: 5.2% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 25% (2000 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2.8% highest 10%: 32.4% (1998)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 17.2% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 10.2% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $474.9 million expenditures: $955.5 million, including capital expenditures of $5.7 billion (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: rice, pulses, beans, sesame, groundnuts, sugarcane; hardwood; fish and fish products

Industries: agricultural processing; knit and woven apparel; wood and wood products; copper, tin, tungsten, iron; construction materials; pharmaceuticals; fertilizer; cement

Industrial production growth rate: NA

Electricity - production: 5.068 billion kWh (2003)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 44.5% hydro: 43.4% nuclear: 0% other: 12.1% (2002)

Electricity - consumption: 3.484 billion kWh (2003)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2004)

Oil - production: 17,550 bbl/day (2003 est.)

Oil - consumption: 60,950 bbl/day (2003 est.)

Oil - exports: 3,356 bbl/day (2003)

Oil - imports: 49,230 bbl/day (2003)

Oil - proved reserves: 3.2 billion bbl (2003)

Natural gas - production: 9.98 billion cu m (2003 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 1.569 billion cu m (2003 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 8.424 billion cu m (2003 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2003 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 2.46 trillion cu m (2003)

Current account balance: $-185 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $2.137 billion f.o.b. note: official export figures are grossly underestimated due to the value of timber, gems, narcotics, rice, and other products smuggled to Thailand, China, and Bangladesh (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: clothing, gas, wood products, pulses, beans, fish, rice

Exports - partners: Thailand 37.8%, India 11.7%, China 6%, Japan 5.3% (2004)

Imports: $1.754 billion f.o.b. note: import figures are grossly underestimated due to the value of consumer goods, diesel fuel, and other products smuggled in from Thailand, China, Malaysia, and India (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: fabric, petroleum products, plastics, machinery, transport equipment, construction materials, crude oil; food products

Imports - partners: China 29.8%, Singapore 20.8%, Thailand 19.3%, South Korea 5.2%, Malaysia 4.8% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $590 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $6.752 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $127 million (2001 est.)

Currency (code): kyat (MMK)

Currency code: MMK

Exchange rates: kyats per US dollar - 5.7459 (2004), 6.0764 (2003), 6.5734 (2002), 6.6841 (2001), 6.4257 (2000) note: these are official exchange rates; unofficial exchange rates ranged in 2004 from 815 kyat/US dollar to nearly 970 kyat/US dollar

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Communications Burma

Telephones - main lines in use: 357,300 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 66,500 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: barely meets minimum requirements for local and intercity service for business and government; international service is fair domestic: NA international: country code - 95; satellite earth station - 2, Intelsat (Indian Ocean), and ShinSat

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 1 (2004)

Radios: 4.2 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 2 (2004)

Televisions: 320,000 (2000)

Internet country code: .mm

Internet hosts: 3 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 note: as of September 2000, Internet connections were legal only for the government, tourist offices, and a few large businesses (2000)

Internet users: 28,000 (2003)

Transportation Burma

Railways: total: 3,955 km narrow gauge: 3,955 km 1.000-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 28,200 km paved: 3,440 km unpaved: 24,760 km (1996 est.)

Waterways: 12,800 km (2004)

Pipelines: gas 2,056 km; oil 558 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Moulmein, Rangoon, Sittwe

Merchant marine: total: 37 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 429,144 GRT/659,622 DWT by type: bulk carrier 8, cargo 19, passenger 3, passenger/cargo 3, roll on'roll off 3, specialized tanker 1 foreign-owned: 10 (Germany 4, Japan 5, United Kingdom 1) (2005)

Airports: 78 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 9 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 5 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 69 over 3,047 m: 2 1,524 to 2,437 m: 16 914 to 1,523 m: 20 under 914 m: 31 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Burma

Military branches: Myanmar Armed Forces (Tatmadaw): Army, Navy, Air Force (2005)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service for both sexes (May 2002)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 11,254,374 females age 18-49: 11,303,100 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 6,512,923 females age 18-49: 6,789,720 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 440,914 females: 427,382 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $39 million (FY97)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 2.1% (FY97)

Transnational Issues Burma

Disputes - international: over half of Burma's population consists of diverse ethnic groups with substantial numbers of kin beyond its borders; despite continuing border committee talks, significant differences remain with Thailand over boundary alignment and the handling of ethnic rebels, refugees, and illegal cross-border activities; ethnic Karens flee into Thailand to escape fighting between Karen rebels and Burmese troops, in 2004 Thailand sheltered about 118,000 Burmese refugees; Karens also protest Thai support for a Burmese hydroelectric dam on the Salween River near the border; environmentalists in Burma and Thailand continue to voice concern over China's construction of hydroelectric dams upstream on the Nujiang/Salween River in Yunnan Province; India seeks cooperation from Burma to keep Indian Nagaland separatists from hiding in remote Burmese uplands

Refugees and internally displaced persons: IDPs: 600,000 - 1,000,000 (government offensives against ethnic insurgent groups near borders; most IDPs are ethnic Karen, Karenni, Shan, and Mon) (2004)

Illicit drugs: remains world's second largest producer of illicit opium (estimated production in 2004 - 292 metric tons, down 40% from 2003 due to eradication efforts and drought; cultivation in 2004 - 30,900 hectares, a 34% decline from 2003); lack of government will and ability to take on major narcotrafficking groups and lack of serious commitment against money laundering continues to hinder the overall antidrug effort; major source of methamphetamine and heroin for regional consumption; currently under Financial Action Task Force countermeasures due to continued failure to address its inadequate money-laundering controls (2005)

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Burundi

Introduction Burundi

Background: Burundi's first democratically elected president was assassinated in October 1993 after only one hundred days in office. Since then, some 200,000 Burundians have perished in widespread, often intense ethnic violence between Hutu and Tutsi factions. Hundreds of thousands have been internally displaced or have become refugees in neighboring countries. Burundi troops, seeking to secure their borders, briefly intervened in the conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 1998. A new transitional government, inaugurated on 1 November 2001, signed a power-sharing agreement with the largest rebel faction in December 2003 and set in place a provisional constitution in October 2004. Implementation of the agreement has been problematic, however, as one remaining rebel group refuses to sign on and elections have been repeatedly delayed, clouding prospects for a sustainable peace.

Geography Burundi

Location: Central Africa, east of Democratic Republic of the Congo

Geographic coordinates: 3 30 S, 30 00 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 27,830 sq km land: 25,650 sq km water: 2,180 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Maryland

Land boundaries: total: 974 km border countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo 233 km, Rwanda 290 km, Tanzania 451 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: equatorial; high plateau with considerable altitude variation (772 m to 2,670 m above sea level); average annual temperature varies with altitude from 23 to 17 degrees centigrade but is generally moderate as the average altitude is about 1,700 m; average annual rainfall is about 150 cm; wet seasons from February to May and September to November, and dry seasons from June to August and December to January

Terrain: hilly and mountainous, dropping to a plateau in east, some plains

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Lake Tanganyika 772 m highest point: Heha 2,670 m

Natural resources: nickel, uranium, rare earth oxides, peat, cobalt, copper, platinum, vanadium, arable land, hydropower, niobium, tantalum, gold, tin, tungsten, kaolin, limestone

Land use: arable land: 35.05% permanent crops: 14.02% other: 50.93% (2001)

Irrigated land: 740 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: flooding, landslides, drought

Environment - current issues: soil erosion as a result of overgrazing and the expansion of agriculture into marginal lands; deforestation (little forested land remains because of uncontrolled cutting of trees for fuel); habitat loss threatens wildlife populations

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea

Geography - note: landlocked; straddles crest of the Nile-Congo watershed; the Kagera, which drains into Lake Victoria, is the most remote headstream of the White Nile

People Burundi

Population: 6,370,609 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 46% (male 1,479,941/female 1,450,808) 15-64 years: 51.3% (male 1,617,864/female 1,653,331) 65 years and over: 2.6% (male 66,199/female 102,466) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 16.6 years male: 16.27 years female: 16.95 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.22% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 39.66 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 17.43 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.65 male(s)/female total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 69.29 deaths/1,000 live births male: 75.87 deaths/1,000 live births female: 62.5 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 50.29 years male: 49.61 years female: 50.99 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 5.81 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 6% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 250,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 25,000 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: very high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne disease: malaria (2004)

Nationality: noun: Burundian(s) adjective: Burundian

Ethnic groups: Hutu (Bantu) 85%, Tutsi (Hamitic) 14%, Twa (Pygmy) 1%, Europeans 3,000, South Asians 2,000

Religions: Christian 67% (Roman Catholic 62%, Protestant 5%), indigenous beliefs 23%, Muslim 10%

Languages: Kirundi (official), French (official), Swahili (along Lake Tanganyika and in the Bujumbura area)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 51.6% male: 58.5% female: 45.2% (2003 est.)

Government Burundi

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Burundi conventional short form: Burundi local long form: Republika y'u Burundi local short form: Burundi former: Urundi

Government type: republic

Capital: Bujumbura

Administrative divisions: 16 provinces; Bubanza, Bujumbura, Bururi, Cankuzo, Cibitoke, Gitega, Karuzi, Kayanza, Kirundo, Makamba, Muramvya, Muyinga, Mwaro, Ngozi, Rutana, Ruyigi

Independence: 1 July 1962 (from UN trusteeship under Belgian administration)

National holiday: Independence Day, 1 July (1962)

Constitution: 13 March 1992; provided for establishment of a plural political system; supplanted on 20 October 2004 by a provisional constitution approved by the parliament which extended the transition; a 28 February 2005 popular referendum ratified the new constitution which set ethnic quotas for government positions, and tentatively scheduled general elections for April 2005

Legal system: based on German and Belgian civil codes and customary law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: NA years of age; universal adult

Executive branch: chief of state: President Domitien NDAYIZEYE (since 30 April 2003); note - NDAYIZEYE, a Hutu, was sworn in as president for the second half of the three-year transitional government inaugurated on 1 November 2001; Vice President Frederic NGENZEBUHORO (since 11 November 2004) head of government: President Domitien NDAYIZEYE (since 30 April 2003); note - NDAYIZEYE, a Hutu, was sworn in as president for the second half of the three-year transitional government inaugurated on 1 November 2001; Vice President Frederic NGENZEBUHORO (since 11 November 2004) cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by president elections: NA; current president assumed power on 30 April 2003 as part of the transitional government established by the 2000 Arusha Accord; note - next presidential election is scheduled for 22 April 2005

Legislative branch: bicameral, consists of a National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (expanded from 121 to approximately 140 seats under the transitional government inaugurated 1 November 2001; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) and a Senate (54 seats; term length is undefined, the current senators will likely serve out the three-year transition period) elections: last held 29 June 1993 (next was scheduled to be held in 1998, but was suspended by presidential decree in 1996; elections are currently planned to be held by April 2005) election results: percent of vote by party - FRODEBU 71.04%, UPRONA 21.4%, other 7.56%; seats by party - FRODEBU 65, UPRONA 16, civilians 27, other parties 13

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Cour Supreme; Constitutional Court; Courts of Appeal (there are three in separate locations); Tribunals of First Instance (17 at the province level and 123 small local tribunals)

Political parties and leaders: the three national, mainstream, governing parties are: Unity for National Progress or UPRONA [Jean-Baptiste MANWANGARI, secretary general]; Burundi Democratic Front or FRODEBU [Jean MINANI, president]; National Council for the Defense of Democracy, Front for the Defense of Democracy of CNDD-FDD [Pierre NKURUNZIZA, president] note: a multiparty system was introduced after 1998, included are: National Resistance Movement for the Rehabilitation of the Citizen or MRC-Rurenzangemero [Epitace BANYAGANAKANDI]; Party for National Redress or PARENA [Jean-Baptiste BAGAZA]

Political pressure groups and leaders: loosely organized Hutu and Tutsi militias, often affiliated with Hutu and Tutsi extremist parties or subordinate to government security forces

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, CEPGL, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO (subscriber), ITU, MIGA, NAM, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Antoine NTAMOBWA chancery: Suite 212, 2233 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20007 telephone: [1] (202) 342-2574 FAX: [1] (202) 342-2578

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador James Howard YELLIN embassy: Avenue des Etats-Unis, Bujumbura mailing address: B. P. 1720, Bujumbura telephone: [257] 223454 FAX: [257] 222926

Flag description: divided by a white diagonal cross into red panels (top and bottom) and green panels (hoist side and outer side) with a white disk superimposed at the center bearing three red six-pointed stars outlined in green arranged in a triangular design (one star above, two stars below)

Economy Burundi

Economy - overview: Burundi is a landlocked, resource-poor country with an underdeveloped manufacturing sector. The economy is predominantly agricultural with roughly 90% of the population dependent on subsistence agriculture. Economic growth depends on coffee and tea exports, which account for 90% of foreign exchange earnings. The ability to pay for imports, therefore, rests primarily on weather conditions and international coffee and tea prices. The Tutsi minority, 14% of the population, dominates the government and the coffee trade at the expense of the Hutu majority, 85% of the population. Since October 1993 an ethnic-based war has resulted in more than 200,000 deaths, forced 450,000 refugees into Tanzania, and displaced 140,000 others internally. Doubts about the prospects for sustainable peace continue to impede development. Only one in two children go to school, and approximately one in ten adults has HIV/AIDS. Food, medicine, and electricity remain in short supply.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $4.001 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 3% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $600 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 48.1% industry: 19% services: 32.9% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 2.99 million (2002)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 93.6%, industry 2.3%, services 4.1% (2002 est.)

Unemployment rate: NA

Population below poverty line: 68% (2002 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 1.8% highest 10%: 32.9% (1998)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 42.5 (1998)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 8.5% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 10.7% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $152.5 million expenditures: $187.7 million, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: coffee, cotton, tea, corn, sorghum, sweet potatoes, bananas, manioc (tapioca); beef, milk, hides

Industries: light consumer goods such as blankets, shoes, soap; assembly of imported components; public works construction; food processing

Industrial production growth rate: 18% (2001)

Electricity - production: 132 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 0.6% hydro: 99.4% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 137.8 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 15 million kWh; note - supplied by the Democratic Republic of the Congo (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 2,750 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Current account balance: $-59.5 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $31.84 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: coffee, tea, sugar, cotton, hides

Exports - partners: Germany 19.6%, Belgium 8.2%, Pakistan 6.7%, US 5.6%, Rwanda 5.6%, Thailand 5.4% (2004)

Imports: $138.2 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: capital goods, petroleum products, foodstuffs

Imports - partners: Kenya 13.7%, Tanzania 11.2%, US 8.9%, Belgium 8.5%, France 8.4%, Italy 6%, Uganda 5.6%, Japan 4.6%, Germany 4.5% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $76.89 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $1.133 billion (2002)

Economic aid - recipient: $92.7 million (2000)

Currency (code): Burundi franc (BIF)

Currency code: BIF

Exchange rates: Burundi francs per US dollar - 1,100.91 (2004), 1,082.62 (2003), 930.75 (2002), 830.35 (2001), 720.67 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Burundi

Telephones - main lines in use: 23,900 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 64,000 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: primitive system domestic: sparse system of open-wire, radiotelephone communications, and low-capacity microwave radio relay international: country code - 257; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 0, FM 4, shortwave 1 (2001)

Radios: 440,000 (2001)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (2001)

Televisions: 25,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .bi

Internet hosts: 22 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)

Internet users: 14,000 (2003)

Transportation Burundi

Highways: total: 14,480 km paved: 1,028 km unpaved: 13,452 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: mainly on Lake Tanganyika (2004)

Ports and harbors: Bujumbura

Airports: 8 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 1 over 3,047 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 7 914 to 1,523 m: 4 under 914 m: 3 (2004 est.)

Military Burundi

Military branches: National Defense Force (Forces de Defense Nationales, FDN): Army (includes Naval Detachment and Air Wing), National Gendarmerie (2005)

Military service age and obligation: 16 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 16-49: 1,379,793 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 16-49: 693,956 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 84,597 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $38.7 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 6% (2004)

Transnational Issues Burundi

Disputes - international: Tutsi, Hutu, other conflicting ethnic groups, associated political rebels, armed gangs, and various government forces continue fighting in the Great Lakes region, transcending the boundaries of Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda in an effort to gain control over populated and natural resource areas; government heads pledge to end conflict, but localized violence continues despite the presence of about 6,000 peacekeepers from the UN Operation in Burundi (ONUB) since 2004; although some 150,000 Burundian refugees have been repatriated, as of February 2005, Burundian refugees still reside in camps in western Tanzania as well as the Democratic Republic of the Congo

Refugees and internally displaced persons: refugees (country of origin): 60,288 (Democratic Republic of the Congo) IDPs: 140,000 (armed conflict between government and rebels; most IDPs in northern and western Burundi) (2004)

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Cambodia

Introduction Cambodia

Background: Most Cambodians consider themselves to be Khmers, whose Angkor Empire extended over much of Southeast Asia and reached its zenith between the 10th and 13th centuries. Subsequently, attacks by the Thai and Cham (from present-day Vietnam) weakened the empire ushering in a long period of decline. In 1863, the king of Cambodia placed the country under French protection; it became part of French Indochina in 1887. Following Japanese occupation in World War II, Cambodia became independent within the French Union in 1949 and fully independent in 1953. After a five-year struggle, Communist Khmer Rouge forces captured Phnom Penh in April 1975 and ordered the evacuation of all cities and towns; at least 1.5 million Cambodians died from execution, enforced hardships, or starvation during the Khmer Rouge regime under POL POT. A December 1978 Vietnamese invasion drove the Khmer Rouge into the countryside, led to a 10-year Vietnamese occupation, and touched off almost 13 years of civil war. The 1991 Paris Peace Accords mandated democratic elections and a ceasefire, which was not fully respected by the Khmer Rouge. UN-sponsored elections in 1993 helped restore some semblance of normalcy and the final elements of the Khmer Rouge surrendered in early 1999. Factional fighting in 1997 ended the first coalition government, but a second round of national elections in 1998 led to the formation of another coalition government and renewed political stability. The July 2003 elections were relatively peaceful, but it took one year of negotiations between contending political parties before a coalition government was formed. Nation-wide local elections are scheduled for 2007 and national elections for 2008.

Geography Cambodia

Location: Southeastern Asia, bordering the Gulf of Thailand, between Thailand, Vietnam, and Laos

Geographic coordinates: 13 00 N, 105 00 E

Map references: Southeast Asia

Area: total: 181,040 sq km land: 176,520 sq km water: 4,520 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Oklahoma

Land boundaries: total: 2,572 km border countries: Laos 541 km, Thailand 803 km, Vietnam 1,228 km

Coastline: 443 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm

Climate: tropical; rainy, monsoon season (May to November); dry season (December to April); little seasonal temperature variation

Terrain: mostly low, flat plains; mountains in southwest and north

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Gulf of Thailand 0 m highest point: Phnum Aoral 1,810 m

Natural resources: oil and gas, timber, gemstones, some iron ore, manganese, phosphates, hydropower potential

Land use: arable land: 20.96% permanent crops: 0.61% other: 78.43% (2001)

Irrigated land: 2,700 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: monsoonal rains (June to November); flooding; occasional droughts

Environment - current issues: illegal logging activities throughout the country and strip mining for gems in the western region along the border with Thailand have resulted in habitat loss and declining biodiversity (in particular, destruction of mangrove swamps threatens natural fisheries); soil erosion; in rural areas, most of the population does not have access to potable water; declining fish stocks because of illegal fishing and overfishing

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea

Geography - note: a land of paddies and forests dominated by the Mekong River and Tonle Sap

People Cambodia

Population: 13,607,069 note: estimates for this country take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 37.3% (male 2,559,734/female 2,510,235) 15-64 years: 59.7% (male 3,887,642/female 4,232,313) 65 years and over: 3.1% (male 150,862/female 266,283) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 19.91 years male: 19.16 years female: 20.79 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.81% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 27.08 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 8.97 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.92 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.57 male(s)/female total population: 0.94 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 71.48 deaths/1,000 live births male: 80.13 deaths/1,000 live births female: 62.43 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 58.92 years male: 56.98 years female: 60.95 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3.44 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 2.6% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 170,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 15,000 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: very high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne diseases: dengue fever, malaria, and Japanese encephalitis are high risks in some locations (2004)

Nationality: noun: Cambodian(s) adjective: Cambodian

Ethnic groups: Khmer 90%, Vietnamese 5%, Chinese 1%, other 4%

Religions: Theravada Buddhist 95%, other 5%

Languages: Khmer (official) 95%, French, English

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 73.6% male: 84.7% female: 64.1% (2004 est.)

Government Cambodia

Country name: conventional long form: Kingdom of Cambodia conventional short form: Cambodia local long form: Preahreacheanacha Kampuchea (phonetic pronunciation) local short form: Kampuchea former: Kingdom of Cambodia, Khmer Republic, Democratic Kampuchea, People's Republic of Kampuchea, State of Cambodia

Government type: multiparty democracy under a constitutional monarchy established in September 1993

Capital: Phnom Penh

Administrative divisions: 20 provinces (khaitt, singular and plural) and 4 municipalities (krong, singular and plural) : provinces: Banteay Mean Chey, Batdambang, Kampong Cham, Kampong Chhnang, Kampong Spoe, Kampong Thum, Kampot, Kandal, Koh Kong, Kracheh, Mondol Kiri, Otdar Mean Chey, Pouthisat, Preah Vihear, Prey Veng, Rotanakir, Siem Reab, Stoeng Treng, Svay Rieng, Takao : municipalities: Keb, Pailin, Phnom Penh, Preah Seihanu

Independence: 9 November 1953 (from France)

National holiday: Independence Day, 9 November (1953)

Constitution: promulgated 21 September 1993

Legal system: primarily a civil law mixture of French-influenced codes from the United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC) period, royal decrees, and acts of the legislature, with influences of customary law and remnants of communist legal theory; increasing influence of common law in recent years

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: King Norodom SIHAMONI (since 29 October 2004) head of government: Prime Minister HUN SEN (since 14 January 1985) and Deputy Prime Ministers SAR KHENG (since 3 February 1992), Norodom SIRIVUDH, SOK AN, LU LAY SRENG, TEA BANH, HOR NAMHONG, NHEK BUNCHHAY (since 16 July 2004) cabinet: Council of Ministers in theory appointed by the monarch; in practice named by the prime minister elections: none; the monarch is chosen by a Royal Throne Council; following legislative elections, a member of the majority party or majority coalition is named prime minister by the Chairman of the National Assembly and appointed by the king

Legislative branch: bicameral, consists of the National Assembly (123 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) and the Senate (61 seats; two members appointed by the monarch, two elected by the National Assembly, and 57 elected by "functional constituencies"; members serve five-year terms) elections: National Assembly - last held 27 July 2003 (next to be held in July 2008); Senate - last held 2 March 1999 (scheduled to be held in 2004 but delayed) election results: National Assembly - percent of vote by party - CPP 47%, SRP 22%, FUNCINPEC 21%, other 10%; seats by party - CPP 73, FUNCINPEC 26, SRP 24; Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - CPP 31, FUNCINPEC 21, SRP 7, other 2 (July 2003)

Judicial branch: Supreme Council of the Magistracy (provided for in the constitution and formed in December 1997); Supreme Court (and lower courts) exercises judicial authority

Political parties and leaders: Cambodian Pracheachon Party (Cambodian People's Party) or CPP [CHEA SIM]; National United Front for an Independent, Neutral, Peaceful, and Cooperative Cambodia or FUNCINPEC [Prince NORODOM Ranariddh]; Sam Rangsi Party or SRP [SAM RANGSI]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ACCT, APT, ARF, AsDB, ASEAN, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO (subscriber), ITU, MIGA, NAM, OPCW (signatory), PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador EK SEREYWATH chancery: 4530 16th Street NW, Washington, DC 20011 telephone: [1] (202) 726-7742 FAX: [1] (202) 726-8381

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Joseph A. MUSSOMELI embassy: 27 EO Street 240, Phnom Penh mailing address: Box P, APO AP 96546 telephone: [855] (23) 216-436/438 FAX: [855] (23) 216-437/811

Flag description: three horizontal bands of blue (top), red (double width), and blue with a white three-towered temple representing Angkor Wat outlined in black in the center of the red band; only national flag to incorporate a building in its design

Economy Cambodia

Economy - overview: Cambodia's economy slowed dramatically in 1997 and 1998 due to the regional economic crisis, civil violence, and political infighting, and foreign investment and tourism decreased. In 1999, the first full year of peace in 30 years, the government made progress on economic reforms. Growth resumed and remained about 5% from 2000 to 2004. Economic growth has been largely driven by expansion in the garment sector and tourism, but is expected to fall in 2005 as growth in the garment sector stalls. Clothing exports were fostered by a US-Cambodian Bilateral Textile Agreement signed in 1999 which gave Cambodia a guaranteed quota of US textile imports and established a bonus for improving working conditions and enforcing Cambodian labor laws and international labor standards in the industry. With the January 2005 expiration of a WTO Agreement on Textiles and Clothing, Cambodia-based textile producers are in direct competition with lower priced producing countries such as China and India. Faced with the possibility that over the next five years Cambodia may lose orders and some of the 250,000 well-paid jobs the industry provides, Cambodia has committed itself to a policy of continued support for high labor standards in an attempt to maintain favor with buyers. Tourism growth remains strong, with arrivals up 15% in 2004. The long-term development of the economy after decades of war remains a daunting challenge. The population lacks education and productive skills, particularly in the poverty-ridden countryside, which suffers from an almost total lack of basic infrastructure. Fully 75% of the population remains engaged in subsistence farming. Fear of renewed political instability and a dysfunctional legal system coupled with extensive government corruption discourage foreign investment. The Cambodian government continues to work with bilateral and multilateral donors to address the country's many pressing needs. In December 2004, official donors pledged $504 million in aid for 2005 on the condition that the Cambodian government begins taking steps to address rampant corruption. The next donor pledging session is scheduled for December 2005. The major economic challenge for Cambodia over the next decade will be fashioning an economic environment in which the private sector can create enough jobs to handle Cambodia's demographic imbalance. More than 50% of the population is 20 years or younger.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $26.99 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 5.4% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $2,000 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 35% industry: 30% services: 35% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 7 million (2003 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 75% (2004 est.)

Unemployment rate: 2.5% (2000 est.)

Population below poverty line: 40% (2004 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2.9% highest 10%: 33.8% (1997)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 40 (2004 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3.1% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 20.9% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $548.2 million expenditures: $836.7 million, including capital expenditures of $291 million of which 75% was financed by external assistance (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: rice, rubber, corn, vegetables, cashews, tapioca

Industries: tourism, garments, rice milling, fishing, wood and wood products, rubber, cement, gem mining, textiles

Industrial production growth rate: 22% (2002 est.)

Electricity - production: 122 million kWh (2003)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 65% hydro: 35% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 100.6 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 7,200 bbl/day (2002 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Current account balance: $-316.2 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $2.311 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: Clothing, timber, rubber, rice, fish, tobacco, footwear

Exports - partners: US 55.9%, Germany 11.7%, UK 6.9%, Vietnam 4.4%, Canada 4.2% (2004)

Imports: $3.129 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: petroleum products, cigarettes, gold, construction materials, machinery, motor vehicles, pharmaceutical products

Imports - partners: Thailand 22.5%, Hong Kong 14.1%, China 13.6%, Vietnam 10.9%, Singapore 10.8%, Taiwan 8.4% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $997.5 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $2.4 billion (2002 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $504 million pledged in grants and concessional loans for 2005 by international donors

Currency (code): riel (KHR)

Currency code: KHR

Exchange rates: riels per US dollar - 4,016.25 (2004), 3,973.33 (2003), 3,912.08 (2002), 3,916.33 (2001), 3,840.75 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Cambodia

Telephones - main lines in use: 35,400 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 380,000 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: adequate landline and/or cellular service in Phnom Penh and other provincial cities; mobile phone coverage is rapidly expanding in rural areas domestic: NA international: country code - 855; adequate but expensive landline and cellular service available to all countries from Phnom Penh and major provincial cities; satellite earth station - 1 Intersputnik (Indian Ocean region)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 2, FM 17, (2003)

Radios: 1.34 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 7 (2003)

Televisions: 94,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .kh

Internet hosts: 818 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 2 (2000)

Internet users: 30,000 (2002)

Transportation Cambodia

Railways: total: 602 km narrow gauge: 602 km 1.000-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 12,323 km paved: 1,996 km unpaved: 10,327 km (2000 est)

Waterways: 2,400 km (mainly on Mekong River) (2004)

Ports and harbors: Phnom Penh

Merchant marine: total: 479 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 1,913,910 GRT/2,713,967 DWT by type: bulk carrier 34, cargo 396, chemical tanker 9, container 6, livestock carrier 3, passenger/cargo 3, petroleum tanker 11, refrigerated cargo 11, roll on/roll off 5, specialized tanker 1 foreign-owned: 193 (Canada 4, China 39, China 2, Cyprus 4, Egypt 5, Estonia 2, France 1, Germany 1, Greece 6, Honduras 1, Hong Kong 3, Indonesia 1, Isle of Man 1, Israel 1, Italy 1, Japan 1, Lebanon 1, Nigeria 2, Norway 1, Russia 58, Singapore 5, South Korea 23, Syria 8, Turkey 7, Ukraine 6, UAE 1, United States 7, Yemen 1) (2005)

Airports: 20 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 6 2,438 to 3,047 m: 2 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 14 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 914 to 1,523 m: 11 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 2 (2004 est.)

Military Cambodia

Military branches: Royal Cambodian Armed Forces: Army, Navy, Air Force

Military service age and obligation: 18-30 years of age for compulsory military service for all males; conscription law passed September 2004; service obligation is 18 months (September 2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 2,981,823 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 1,844,144 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 175,305 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $112 million (FY01 est.)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 3% (FY01 est.)

Transnational Issues Cambodia

Disputes - international: Southeast Asian states have enhanced border surveillance to check the spread of avian flu; Cambodia and Thailand dispute sections of boundary with missing boundary markers and Thai encroachments into Cambodian territory; maritime boundary with Vietnam is hampered by unresolved dispute over offshore islands; Cambodia accuses Thailand of obstructing access to Preah Vihear temple ruins awarded to Cambodia by ICJ decision in 1962; in 2004 Cambodian-Laotian and Laotian-Vietnamese boundary commissions reerect missing markers completing most of their demarcations

Illicit drugs: narcotics-related corruption reportedly involving some in the government, military, and police; possible small-scale opium, heroin, and amphetamine production; large producer of cannabis for the international market; vulnerable to money laundering due to its cash-based economy and porous borders

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Cameroon

Introduction Cameroon

Background: The former French Cameroon and part of British Cameroon merged in 1961 to form the present country. Cameroon has generally enjoyed stability, which has permitted the development of agriculture, roads, and railways, as well as a petroleum industry. Despite movement toward democratic reform, political power remains firmly in the hands of an ethnic oligarchy.

Geography Cameroon

Location: Western Africa, bordering the Bight of Biafra, between Equatorial Guinea and Nigeria

Geographic coordinates: 6 00 N, 12 00 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 475,440 sq km land: 469,440 sq km water: 6,000 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly larger than California

Land boundaries: total: 4,591 km border countries: Central African Republic 797 km, Chad 1,094 km, Republic of the Congo 523 km, Equatorial Guinea 189 km, Gabon 298 km, Nigeria 1,690 km

Coastline: 402 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 50 nm

Climate: varies with terrain, from tropical along coast to semiarid and hot in north

Terrain: diverse, with coastal plain in southwest, dissected plateau in center, mountains in west, plains in north

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Fako (on Mount Cameroon) 4,095 m

Natural resources: petroleum, bauxite, iron ore, timber, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 12.81% permanent crops: 2.58% other: 84.61% (2001)

Irrigated land: 330 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: volcanic activity with periodic releases of poisonous gases from Lake Nyos and Lake Monoun volcanoes

Environment - current issues: waterborne diseases are prevalent; deforestation; overgrazing; desertification; poaching; overfishing

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94 signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: sometimes referred to as the hinge of Africa; throughout the country there are areas of thermal springs and indications of current or prior volcanic activity; Mount Cameroon, the highest mountain in Sub-Saharan west Africa, is an active volcano

People Cameroon

Population: 16,380,005 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 41.7% (male 3,457,180/female 3,375,668) 15-64 years: 55% (male 4,537,281/female 4,477,163) 65 years and over: 3.3% (male 239,634/female 293,079) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 18.6 years male: 18.45 years female: 18.76 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.93% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 34.67 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 15.4 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.82 male(s)/female total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 68.26 deaths/1,000 live births male: 72.14 deaths/1,000 live births female: 64.27 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 50.89 years male: 50.71 years female: 51.08 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.47 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 6.9% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 560,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 49,000 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: very high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne diseases: malaria and yellow fever are high risks in some locations water contact disease: schistosomiasis respiratory disease: meningococcal meningitis (2004)

Nationality: noun: Cameroonian(s) adjective: Cameroonian

Ethnic groups: Cameroon Highlanders 31%, Equatorial Bantu 19%, Kirdi 11%, Fulani 10%, Northwestern Bantu 8%, Eastern Nigritic 7%, other African 13%, non-African less than 1%

Religions: indigenous beliefs 40%, Christian 40%, Muslim 20%

Languages: 24 major African language groups, English (official), French (official)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 79% male: 84.7% female: 73.4% (2003 est.)

Government Cameroon

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Cameroon conventional short form: Cameroon former: French Cameroon

Government type: unitary republic; multiparty presidential regime (opposition parties legalized in 1990) note: preponderance of power remains with the president

Capital: Yaounde

Administrative divisions: 10 provinces; Adamaoua, Centre, Est, Extreme-Nord, Littoral, Nord, Nord-Ouest, Ouest, Sud, Sud-Ouest

Independence: 1 January 1960 (from French-administered UN trusteeship)

National holiday: Republic Day (National Day), 20 May (1972)

Constitution: 20 May 1972 approved by referendum, 2 June 1972 formally adopted; revised January 1996

Legal system: based on French civil law system, with common law influence; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 20 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Paul BIYA (since 6 November 1982) head of government: Prime Minister Ephraim INONI (since 8 Dec 2004) cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president from proposals submitted by the prime minister elections: president elected by popular vote for a seven-year term; election last held 11 October 2004 (next to be held NA October 2011); prime minister appointed by the president election results: President Paul BIYA reelected; percent of vote - Paul BIYA 70.9%, John FRU NDI 17.4%, Adamou Ndam NJOYA 4.5%, Garga Haman ADJI 3.7%

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (180 seats; members are elected by direct popular vote to serve five-year terms; note - the president can either lengthen or shorten the term of the legislature) elections: last held 23 June 2002 (next to be held NA 2007) election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - RDCP 133, SDF 21, UDC 5, other 21 note: the constitution calls for an upper chamber for the legislature, to be called a Senate, but it has yet to be established

Judicial branch: Supreme Court (judges are appointed by the president); High Court of Justice (consists of 9 judges and 6 substitute judges, elected by the National Assembly)

Political parties and leaders: Cameroonian Democratic Union or UDC [Adamou NDAM NJOYA]; Democratic Rally of the Cameroon People or RDCP [Paul BIYA]; Movement for the Defense of the Republic or MDR [Dakole DAISSALA]; Movement for the Liberation and Development of Cameroon or MLDC [leader Marcel YONDO]; Movement for the Youth of Cameroon or MYC [Dieudonne TINA]; National Union for Democracy and Progress or UNDP [Maigari BELLO BOUBA]; Social Democratic Front or SDF [John FRU NDI]; Union of Cameroonian Populations or UPC [Augustin Frederic KODOCK]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Southern Cameroon National Council [Ayamba Ette OTUN]; Human Rights Defense Group [Albert MUKONG, president]

International organization participation: ABEDA, ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, BDEAC, C, CEMAC, FAO, FZ, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ITU, MIGA, MONUC, NAM, OIC, OPCW, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNMIK, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Jerome MENDOUGA chancery: 2349 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 265-8790 FAX: [1] (202) 387-3826

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador George McDade STAPLES embassy: Rue Nachtigal, Yaounde mailing address: P. O. Box 817, Yaounde; pouch: American Embassy, Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-2520 telephone: [237] 223-05-12, 222-25-89, 222-17-94, 223-40-14 FAX: [237] 223-07-53 branch office(s): Douala

Flag description: three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), red, and yellow with a yellow five-pointed star centered in the red band; uses the popular pan-African colors of Ethiopia

Economy Cameroon

Economy - overview: Because of its oil resources and favorable agricultural conditions, Cameroon has one of the best-endowed primary commodity economies in sub-Saharan Africa. Still, it faces many of the serious problems facing other underdeveloped countries, such as a top-heavy civil service and a generally unfavorable climate for business enterprise. Since 1990, the government has embarked on various IMF and World Bank programs designed to spur business investment, increase efficiency in agriculture, improve trade, and recapitalize the nation's banks. In June 2000, the government completed an IMF-sponsored, three-year structural adjustment program; however, the IMF is pressing for more reforms, including increased budget transparency, privatization, and poverty reduction programs. International oil and cocoa prices have considerable impact on the economy.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $30.17 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 4.9% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,900 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 43.7% industry: 20.1% services: 36.2% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 6.68 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 70%, industry and commerce 13%, other 17%

Unemployment rate: 30% (2001 est.)

Population below poverty line: 48% (2000 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 1.9% highest 10%: 36.6% (1996)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 47.7 (1996)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 16.1% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $2.493 billion expenditures: $2.248 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: 69.1% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: coffee, cocoa, cotton, rubber, bananas, oilseed, grains, root starches; livestock; timber

Industries: petroleum production and refining, aluminum production, food processing, light consumer goods, textiles, lumber, ship repair

Industrial production growth rate: 4.2% (1999 est.)

Electricity - production: 3.571 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 2.7% hydro: 97.3% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 3.321 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 94,000 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 22,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 80 million bbl (2004 est.)

Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 55.22 billion cu m (2004)

Current account balance: $-149.1 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $2.445 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: crude oil and petroleum products, lumber, cocoa beans, aluminum, coffee, cotton

Exports - partners: Spain 15.2%, Italy 12.3%, UK 10.2%, France 9.2%, US 8.8%, South Korea 7.1%, Netherlands 4.3% (2004)

Imports: $1.979 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery, electrical equipment, transport equipment, fuel, food

Imports - partners: France 28.2%, Nigeria 9.9%, Belgium 7.6%, US 4.9%, China 4.8%, Germany 4.6%, Italy 4.1% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $687.5 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $8.46 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: on 23 January 2001, the Paris Club agreed to reduce Cameroon's debt of $1.3 billion by $900 million; debt relief now totals $1.26 billion

Currency (code): Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XAF); note - responsible authority is the Bank of the Central African States

Currency code: XAF

Exchange rates: Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XAF) per US dollar - 528.29 (2004), 581.2 (2003), 696.99 (2002), 733.04 (2001), 711.98 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June

Communications Cameroon

Telephones - main lines in use: 110,900 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 1.077 million (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: available only to business and government domestic: cable, microwave radio relay, and tropospheric scatter international: country code - 237; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); fiber optic submarine cable (SAT-3/WASC) provides connectivity to Europe and Asia

Radio broadcast stations: AM 2, FM 9, shortwave 3 (2002)

Radios: 2.27 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (2002)

Televisions: 450,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .cm

Internet hosts: 479 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2002)

Internet users: 60,000 (2002) note: Cameroon also had more than 100 cyber-cafes in 2001

Transportation Cameroon

Railways: total: 1,008 km narrow gauge: 1,008 km 1.000-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 34,300 km paved: 4,288 km unpaved: 30,012 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: navigation mainly on Benue River; limited during rainy season (2004)

Pipelines: gas 90 km; liquid petroleum gas 9 km; oil 1,120 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Douala, Limboh Terminal

Merchant marine: total: 1 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 169,593 GRT/357,023 DWT by type: petroleum tanker 1 (2005)

Airports: 47 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 11 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 4 1,524 to 2,437 m: 3 914 to 1,523 m: 1 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 36 1,524 to 2,437 m: 7 914 to 1,523 m: 20 under 914 m: 9 (2004 est.)

Military Cameroon

Military branches: Cameroon Armed Forces: Army, Navy (includes Naval Infantry), Air Force

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service; no conscription (1999)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 3,410,440 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 1,720,385 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 188,662 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $221.1 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.6% (2004)

Transnational Issues Cameroon

Disputes - international: ICJ ruled in 2002 on the entire Cameroon-Nigeria land and maritime boundary but the parties formed a Joint Border Commission, which continues to meet regularly to resolve differences bilaterally and have commenced with demarcation in less-contested sections of the boundary, starting in Lake Chad in the north; implementation of the ICJ ruling on the Cameroon-Equatorial Guinea-Nigeria maritime boundary in the Gulf of Guinea is impeded by imprecisely defined coordinates, the unresolved Bakassi allocation, and a sovereignty dispute between Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon over an island at the mouth of the Ntem River; Nigeria initially rejected cession of the Bakasi Peninsula, then agreed, but has yet to withdraw its forces while much of the indigenous population opposes cession; only Nigeria and Cameroon have heeded the Lake Chad Commission's admonition to ratify the delimitation treaty which also includes Chad and Niger

Refugees and internally displaced persons: refugees (country of origin): 39,261 (Chad) 16,983 (Nigeria) 9,634 (Cote d'Ivoire) (2004)

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Canada

Introduction Canada

Background: A land of vast distances and rich natural resources, Canada became a self-governing dominion in 1867 while retaining ties to the British crown. Economically and technologically the nation has developed in parallel with the US, its neighbor to the south across an unfortified border. Canada's paramount political problem is meeting public demands for quality improvements in health care and education services after a decade of budget cuts. The issue of reconciling Quebec's francophone heritage with the majority anglophone Canadian population has moved to the back burner in recent years; support for separatism abated after the Quebec government's referendum on independence failed to pass in October of 1995.

Geography Canada

Location: Northern North America, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean on the east, North Pacific Ocean on the west, and the Arctic Ocean on the north, north of the conterminous US

Geographic coordinates: 60 00 N, 95 00 W

Map references: North America

Area: total: 9,984,670 sq km land: 9,093,507 sq km water: 891,163 sq km

Area - comparative: somewhat larger than the US

Land boundaries: total: 8,893 km border countries: US 8,893 km (includes 2,477 km with Alaska)

Coastline: 202,080 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

Climate: varies from temperate in south to subarctic and arctic in north

Terrain: mostly plains with mountains in west and lowlands in southeast

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Mount Logan 5,959 m

Natural resources: iron ore, nickel, zinc, copper, gold, lead, molybdenum, potash, diamonds, silver, fish, timber, wildlife, coal, petroleum, natural gas, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 4.96% permanent crops: 0.02% other: 95.02% (2001)

Irrigated land: 7,200 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: continuous permafrost in north is a serious obstacle to development; cyclonic storms form east of the Rocky Mountains, a result of the mixing of air masses from the Arctic, Pacific, and North American interior, and produce most of the country's rain and snow east of the mountains

Environment - current issues: air pollution and resulting acid rain severely affecting lakes and damaging forests; metal smelting, coal-burning utilities, and vehicle emissions impacting on agricultural and forest productivity; ocean waters becoming contaminated due to agricultural, industrial, mining, and forestry activities

Environment - international agreements: party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Marine Life Conservation

Geography - note: second-largest country in world (after Russia); strategic location between Russia and US via north polar route; approximately 90% of the population is concentrated within 160 km of the US border

People Canada

Population: 32,805,041 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 17.9% (male 3,016,032/female 2,869,244) 15-64 years: 68.9% (male 11,357,425/female 11,244,356) 65 years and over: 13.2% (male 1,842,496/female 2,475,488) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 38.54 years male: 37.54 years female: 39.56 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.9% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 10.84 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 7.73 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 5.9 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.74 male(s)/female total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 4.75 deaths/1,000 live births male: 5.21 deaths/1,000 live births female: 4.27 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 80.1 years male: 76.73 years female: 83.63 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.61 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.3% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 56,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 1,500 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Canadian(s) adjective: Canadian

Ethnic groups: British Isles origin 28%, French origin 23%, other European 15%, Amerindian 2%, other, mostly Asian, African, Arab 6%, mixed background 26%

Religions: Roman Catholic 42.6%, Protestant 23.3% (including United Church 9.5%, Anglican 6.8%, Baptist 2.4%, Lutheran 2%), other Christian 4.4%, Muslim 1.9%, other and unspecified 11.8%, none 16% (2001 census)

Languages: English (official) 59.3%, French (official) 23.2%, other 17.5%

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 97% (1986 est.) male: NA% female: NA%

Government Canada

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Canada

Government type: a constitutional monarchy that is also a parliamentary democracy and a federation

Capital: Ottawa

Administrative divisions: 10 provinces and 3 territories*; Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Northwest Territories*, Nova Scotia, Nunavut*, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Saskatchewan, Yukon Territory*

Independence: 1 July 1867 (union of British North American colonies); 11 December 1931 (independence recognized)

National holiday: Canada Day, 1 July (1867)

Constitution: made up of unwritten and written acts, customs, judicial decisions, and traditions; the written part of the constitution consists of the Constitution Act of 29 March 1867, which created a federation of four provinces, and the Constitution Act of 17 April 1982, which transferred formal control over the constitution from Britain to Canada, and added a Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms as well as procedures for constitutional amendments

Legal system: based on English common law, except in Quebec, where civil law system based on French law prevails; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor General Michaelle Jean (since 27 October 2005) head of government: Prime Minister Paul MARTIN (since 12 December 2003); Deputy Prime Minister Anne MCLELLAN (since 12 December 2003) cabinet: Federal Ministry chosen by the prime minister from among the members of his own party sitting in Parliament elections: none; the monarchy is hereditary; governor general appointed by the monarch on the advice of the prime minister for a five-year term; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition in the House of Commons is automatically designated prime minister by the governor general

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament or Parlement consists of the Senate or Senat (members appointed by the governor general with the advice of the prime minister and serve until reaching 75 years of age; its normal limit is 105 senators) and the House of Commons or Chambre des Communes (308 seats; members elected by direct, popular vote to serve for up to five-year terms) elections: House of Commons - last held 28 June 2004 (next to be held by NA 2009) election results: House of Commons - percent of vote by party - Liberal Party 36.7%, Conservative Party 29.6%, New Democratic Party 15.7%, Bloc Quebecois 12.4%, Greens 4.3%, independents 0.4%, other 0.9%; seats by party - Liberal Party 134, Conservative Party 99, Bloc Quebecois 54, New Democratic Party 19, independent 2

Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Canada (judges are appointed by the prime minister through the governor general); Federal Court of Canada; Federal Court of Appeal; Provincial Courts (these are named variously Court of Appeal, Court of Queens Bench, Superior Court, Supreme Court, and Court of Justice)

Political parties and leaders: Bloc Quebecois [Gilles DUCEPPE]; Conservative Party of Canada (a merger of the Canadian Alliance and the Progressive Conservative Party) [Stephen HARPER]; Green Party [Jim HARRIS]; Liberal Party [Paul MARTIN]; New Democratic Party [Jack LAYTON]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ACCT, AfDB, APEC, ARF, AsDB, ASEAN (dialogue partner), Australia Group, BIS, C, CDB, CE (observer), EAPC, EBRD, ESA (cooperating state), FAO, G-7, G-8, G-10, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MIGA, MINUSTAH, MONUC, NAM (guest), NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS, OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club, PCA, UN, UNAMSIL, UNCTAD, UNDOF, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNHCR, UNMOVIC, UNTSO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Francis Joseph MCKENNA chancery: 501 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20001 telephone: [1] (202) 682-1740 FAX: [1] (202) 682-7726 consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Boston, Buffalo, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, New York, Phoenix, San Diego, and Seattle consulate(s): Anchorage, Houston, Philadelphia, Princeton, Raleigh, San Francisco, and San Jose

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador David H. WILKINS embassy: 490 Sussex Drive, Ottawa, Ontario K1N 1G8 mailing address: P. O. Box 5000, Ogdensburgh, NY 13669-0430 telephone: [1] (613) 238-5335, 4470 FAX: [1] (613) 688-3082 consulate(s) general: Calgary, Halifax, Montreal, Quebec, Toronto, Vancouver, Winnipeg

Flag description: two vertical bands of red (hoist and fly side, half width), with white square between them; an 11-pointed red maple leaf is centered in the white square; the official colors of Canada are red and white

Economy Canada

Economy - overview: As an affluent, high-tech industrial society, newly entered in the trillion dollar class, Canada closely resembles the US in its market-oriented economic system, pattern of production, and affluent living standards. Since World War II, the impressive growth of the manufacturing, mining, and service sectors has transformed the nation from a largely rural economy into one primarily industrial and urban. The 1989 US-Canada Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) (which includes Mexico) touched off a dramatic increase in trade and economic integration with the US. Given its great natural resources, skilled labor force, and modern capital plant Canada enjoys solid economic prospects. Solid fiscal management has produced a long-term budget surplus which is substantially reducing the national debt, although public debate continues over how to manage the rising cost of the publicly funded healthcare system. Exports account for roughly a third of GDP. Canada enjoys a substantial trade surplus with its principal trading partner, the United States, which absorbs more than 85% of Canadian exports.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $1.023 trillion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 2.4% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $31,500 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 2.3% industry: 26.4% services: 71.3% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 17.37 million (2004)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 3%, manufacturing 15%, construction 5%, services 74%, other 3% (2000)

Unemployment rate: 7% (2004)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2.8% highest 10%: 23.8% (1994)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 31.5 (1994)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1.9% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 19.4% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $151 billion expenditures: $144 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: NA (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: wheat, barley, oilseed, tobacco, fruits, vegetables; dairy products; forest products; fish

Industries: transportation equipment, chemicals, processed and unprocessed minerals, food products; wood and paper products; fish products, petroleum and natural gas

Industrial production growth rate: 2% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 548.9 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 28% hydro: 57.9% nuclear: 12.9% other: 1.3% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 487.3 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 36.13 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 13 billion kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 3.11 million bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 2.2 million bbl/day (2003 est.)

Oil - exports: 1.37 million bbl/day (2004)

Oil - imports: 987,000 bbl/day (2004)

Oil - proved reserves: 178.9 billion bbl including shale oil (2004 est.)

Natural gas - production: 165.8 billion cu m (2003 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 55.8 billion cu m (2003 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 91.52 billion cu m (2003 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 8.73 billion cu m (2003 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 1.691 trillion cu m (2004)

Current account balance: $28.2 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $315.6 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: motor vehicles and parts, industrial machinery, aircraft, telecommunications equipment; chemicals, plastics, fertilizers; wood pulp, timber, crude petroleum, natural gas, electricity, aluminum

Exports - partners: US 85.2%, Japan 2.1%, UK 1.6% (2004)

Imports: $256.1 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment, motor vehicles and parts, crude oil, chemicals, electricity, durable consumer goods

Imports - partners: US 58.9%, China 6.8%, Mexico 3.8% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $36.27 billion (2003)

Debt - external: $570 billion (2004)

Economic aid - donor: ODA, $2 billion (2004)

Currency (code): Canadian dollar (CAD)

Currency code: CAD

Exchange rates: Canadian dollars per US dollar - 1.301 (2004), 1.4011 (2003), 1.5693 (2002), 1.5488 (2001), 1.4851 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Communications Canada

Telephones - main lines in use: 19,950,900 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 13,221,800 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: excellent service provided by modern technology domestic: domestic satellite system with about 300 earth stations international: country code - 1-xxx; 5 coaxial submarine cables; satellite earth stations - 5 Intelsat (4 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Pacific Ocean) and 2 Intersputnik (Atlantic Ocean region)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 245, FM 582, shortwave 6 (2004)

Radios: 32.3 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 80 (plus many repeaters) (1997)

Televisions: 21.5 million (1997)

Internet country code: .ca

Internet hosts: 3,210,081 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 760 (2000 est.)

Internet users: 16.11 million (2002)

Transportation Canada

Railways: total: 48,683 km standard gauge: 48,683 km 1.435-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 1,408,800 km paved: 497,306 km (including 16,900 km of expressways) unpaved: 911,494 km (2002)

Waterways: 631 km note: Saint Lawrence Seaway of 3,769 km, including the Saint Lawrence River of 3,058 km, shared with United States (2003)

Pipelines: crude and refined oil 23,564 km; liquid petroleum gas 74,980 km (2003)

Ports and harbors: Fraser River Port, Goderich, Montreal, Port Cartier, Quebec, Saint John's (Newfoundland), Sept Isles, Vancouver

Merchant marine: total: 169 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 1,784,229 GRT/2,657,499 DWT by type: bulk carrier 22, cargo 49, chemical tanker 6, combination ore/oil 1, container 1, passenger 6, passenger/cargo 65, petroleum tanker 13, roll on/roll off 6 foreign-owned: 6 (France 1, Germany 3, United States 2) registered in other countries: 112 (2005)

Airports: 1,326 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 503 over 3,047 m: 18 2,438 to 3,047 m: 15 1,524 to 2,437 m: 150 914 to 1,523 m: 245 under 914 m: 75 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 823 1,524 to 2,437 m: 67 914 to 1,523 m: 347 under 914 m: 409 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 319 (2004)

Military Canada

Military branches: Canadian Armed Forces: Land Forces Command, Maritime Command, Air Command, Canada Command (homeland security) to be operational in early 2006 (2005)

Military service age and obligation: 16 years of age for voluntary military service; women comprise some 11% of Canada's armed forces (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 16-49: 8,216,510 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 16-49: 6,740,490 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 223,821 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $9,801.7 million (2003)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.1% (2003)

Transnational Issues Canada

Disputes - international: managed maritime boundary disputes with the US at Dixon Entrance, Beaufort Sea, Strait of Juan de Fuca, and around the disputed Machias Seal Island and North Rock; working toward greater cooperation with US in monitoring people and commodities crossing the border; uncontested sovereignty dispute with Denmark over Hans Island in the Kennedy Channel between Ellesmere Island and Greenland

Illicit drugs: illicit producer of cannabis for the domestic drug market and export to US; use of hydroponics technology permits growers to plant large quantities of high-quality marijuana indoors; transit point for heroin and cocaine entering the US market; vulnerable to narcotics money laundering because of its mature financial services sector

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Cape Verde

Introduction Cape Verde

Background: The uninhabited islands were discovered and colonized by the Portuguese in the 15th century; Cape Verde subsequently became a trading center for African slaves and later an important coaling and resupply stop for whaling and transatlantic shipping. Following independence in 1975, and a tentative interest in unification with Guinea-Bissau, a one-party system was established and maintained until multi-party elections were held in 1990. Cape Verde continues to exhibit one of Africa's most stable democratic governments. Repeated droughts during the second half of the 20th century caused significant hardship and prompted heavy emigration. As a result, Cape Verde's expatriate population is greater than its domestic one. Most Cape Verdeans have both African and Portuguese antecedents.

Geography Cape Verde

Location: Western Africa, group of islands in the North Atlantic Ocean, west of Senegal

Geographic coordinates: 16 00 N, 24 00 W

Map references: Political Map of the World

Area: total: 4,033 sq km land: 4,033 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly larger than Rhode Island

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 965 km

Maritime claims: measured from claimed archipelagic baselines territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate: temperate; warm, dry summer; precipitation meager and very erratic

Terrain: steep, rugged, rocky, volcanic

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Mt. Fogo 2,829 m (a volcano on Fogo Island)

Natural resources: salt, basalt rock, limestone, kaolin, fish, clay, gypsum

Land use: arable land: 9.68% permanent crops: 0.5% other: 89.82% (2001)

Irrigated land: 30 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: prolonged droughts; seasonal harmattan wind produces obscuring dust; volcanically and seismically active

Environment - current issues: soil erosion; deforestation due to demand for wood used as fuel; desertification; environmental damage has threatened several species of birds and reptiles; illegal beach sand extraction; overfishing

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: strategic location 500 km from west coast of Africa near major north-south sea routes; important communications station; important sea and air refueling site

People Cape Verde

Population: 418,224 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 39% (male 82,249/female 80,752) 15-64 years: 54.3% (male 110,119/female 116,816) 65 years and over: 6.8% (male 10,599/female 17,689) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 19.4 years male: 18.62 years female: 20.25 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.67% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 25.33 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 6.62 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -11.99 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.94 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.6 male(s)/female total population: 0.94 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 47.77 deaths/1,000 live births male: 52.95 deaths/1,000 live births female: 42.44 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 70.45 years male: 67.13 years female: 73.86 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3.48 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.035% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 775 (2001)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 225 (as of 2001)

Nationality: noun: Cape Verdean(s) adjective: Cape Verdean

Ethnic groups: Creole (mulatto) 71%, African 28%, European 1%

Religions: Roman Catholic (infused with indigenous beliefs); Protestant (mostly Church of the Nazarene)

Languages: Portuguese, Crioulo (a blend of Portuguese and West African words)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 76.6% male: 85.8% female: 69.2% (2003 est.)

Government Cape Verde

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Cape Verde conventional short form: Cape Verde local long form: Republica de Cabo Verde local short form: Cabo Verde

Government type: republic

Capital: Praia

Administrative divisions: 17 municipalities (concelhos, singular - concelho); Boa Vista, Brava, Maio, Mosteiros, Paul, Praia, Porto Novo, Ribeira Grande, Sal, Santa Catarina, Santa Cruz, Sao Domingos, Sao Filipe, Sao Miguel, Sao Nicolau, Sao Vicente, Tarrafal

Independence: 5 July 1975 (from Portugal)

National holiday: Independence Day, 5 July (1975)

Constitution: new constitution came into force 25 September 1992; underwent a major revision on 23 November 1995, substantially increasing the powers of the president, and a further revision in 1999, to create the position of national ombudsman (Provedor de Justica)

Legal system: derived from the legal system of Portugal

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Pedro PIRES (since 22 March 2001) head of government: Prime Minister Jose Maria Pereira NEVES (since 1 February 2001) cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president on the recommendation of the prime minister elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; election last held 11 and 25 February 2001 (next to be held February 2006); prime minister nominated by the National Assembly and appointed by the president election results: Pedro PIRES elected president; percent of vote - Pedro PIRES (PAICV) 49.43%, Carlos VIEGA (MPD) 49.42%; note - the election was won by only twelve votes

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Assembleia Nacional (72 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) elections: last held 14 January 2001 (next to be held December 2005) election results: percent of vote by party - PAICV 47.3%, MPD 39.8%, ADM 6%, other 6.9%; seats by party - PAICV 40, MPD 30, ADM 2

Judicial branch: Supreme Tribunal of Justice or Supremo Tribunal de Justia

Political parties and leaders: African Party for Independence of Cape Verde or PAICV [Jose Maria Pereira NEVES, chairman]; Democratic Alliance for Change or ADM [Dr. Eurico MONTEIRO] (a coalition of PCD, PTS, and UCID); Democratic Christian Party or PDC [Manuel RODRIGUES, chairman]; Democratic Renovation Party or PRD [Jacinto SANTOS, president]; Movement for Democracy or MPD [Agostinho LOPES, president]; Party for Democratic Convergence or PCD [Dr. Eurico MONTEIRO, president]; Party of Work and Solidarity or PTS [Isaias RODRIGUES, president]; Social Democratic Party or PSD [Joao ALEM, president]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, ECOWAS, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ITU, MIGA, NAM, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO (observer)

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Jose BRITO chancery: 3415 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20007 telephone: [1] (202) 965-6820 FAX: [1] (202) 965-1207 consulate(s) general: Boston

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Donald C. JOHNSON embassy: Rua Abilio m. Macedo 81, Praia mailing address: C. P. 201, Praia telephone: [238] 261 56 16, 261 56 17 FAX: [238] 261 13 55

Flag description: three horizontal bands of light blue (top, double width), white (with a horizontal red stripe in the middle third), and light blue; a circle of 10 yellow five-pointed stars is centered on the hoist end of the red stripe and extends into the upper and lower blue bands

Economy Cape Verde

Economy - overview: This island economy suffers from a poor natural resource base, including serious water shortages exacerbated by cycles of long-term drought. The economy is service-oriented, with commerce, transport, tourism, and public services accounting for 72% of GDP. Although nearly 70% of the population lives in rural areas, the share of agriculture in GDP in 2004 was only 12%, of which fishing accounted for 1.5%. About 82% of food must be imported. The fishing potential, mostly lobster and tuna, is not fully exploited. Cape Verde annually runs a high trade deficit, financed by foreign aid and remittances from emigrants; remittances supplement GDP by more than 20%. Economic reforms are aimed at developing the private sector and attracting foreign investment to diversify the economy. Future prospects depend heavily on the maintenance of aid flows, the encouragement of tourism, remittances, and the momentum of the government's development program.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $600 million (2002 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 5% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,400 (2002 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 12.1% industry: 21.9% services: 66% (2004 est.)

Labor force: NA

Unemployment rate: 21% (2000 est.)

Population below poverty line: 30% (2000)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1.5% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 19.2% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $260.6 million expenditures: $305.3 million, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: bananas, corn, beans, sweet potatoes, sugarcane, coffee, peanuts; fish

Industries: food and beverages, fish processing, shoes and garments, salt mining, ship repair

Industrial production growth rate: NA

Electricity - production: 43.08 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 40.06 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 2,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Current account balance: $-93.76 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $61.11 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: fuel, shoes, garments, fish, hides

Exports - partners: Portugal 59.4%, US 17.2%, UK 11.4% (2004)

Imports: $387.3 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: foodstuffs, industrial products, transport equipment, fuels

Imports - partners: Portugal 41.8%, US 12.3%, Netherlands 8.4%, Spain 5.2%, Italy 4.2%, Brazil 4% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $112.7 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $325 million (2002)

Economic aid - recipient: $136 million (1999)

Currency (code): Cape Verdean escudo (CVE)

Currency code: CVE

Exchange rates: Cape Verdean escudos (CVE) per US dollar - 88.808 (2004), 97.703 (2003), 117.168 (2002), 123.228 (2001), 119.687 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Cape Verde

Telephones - main lines in use: 71,700 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 53,300 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: effective system, extensive modernization from 1996-2000 following partial privatization in 1995 domestic: major service provider is Cabo Verde Telecom (CVT); fiber optic ring, completed in 2001, links all islands providing Internet access and ISDN services; cellular service introduced in 1998 international: country code - 238; 2 coaxial submarine cables; HF radiotelephone to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 0, FM 22 (and 12 low power repeaters), shortwave 0 (2002)

Radios: 100,000 (2002 est.)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (and 7 repeaters) (2002)

Televisions: 15,000 (2002 est.)

Internet country code: .cv

Internet hosts: 118 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2002)

Internet users: 20,400 (2003)

Transportation Cape Verde

Highways: total: 1,350 km paved: 932 km unpaved: 418 km (2000)

Ports and harbors: Mindelo, Praia, Tarrafal

Merchant marine: total: 5 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 5,395 GRT/6,614 DWT by type: cargo 2, chemical tanker 1, passenger/cargo 2 foreign-owned: 1 (United Kingdom 1) (2005)

Airports: 7 note: 3 airports are reported to be nonoperational (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 6 over 3,047 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 5 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Cape Verde

Military branches: People's Revolutionary Armed Forces (FARP): Army, Coast Guard (includes maritime air wing)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 84,641 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 65,614 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $14.1 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.5% (2004)

Transnational Issues Cape Verde

Disputes - international: none

Illicit drugs: used as a transshipment point for illicit drugs moving from Latin America and Asia destined for Western Europe; the lack of a well-developed financial system limits the country's utility as a money-laundering center

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Cayman Islands

Introduction Cayman Islands

Background: The Cayman Islands were colonized from Jamaica by the British during the 18th and 19th centuries. Administered by Jamaica since 1863, they remained a British dependency after 1962 when the former became independent.

Geography Cayman Islands

Location: Caribbean, island group in Caribbean Sea, nearly one-half of the way from Cuba to Honduras

Geographic coordinates: 19 30 N, 80 30 W

Map references: Central America and the Caribbean

Area: total: 262 sq km land: 262 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: 1.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 160 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical marine; warm, rainy summers (May to October) and cool, relatively dry winters (November to April)

Terrain: low-lying limestone base surrounded by coral reefs

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m highest point: The Bluff 43 m

Natural resources: fish, climate and beaches that foster tourism

Land use: arable land: 3.85% permanent crops: 0% other: 96.15% (2001)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: hurricanes (July to November)

Environment - current issues: no natural fresh water resources; drinking water supplies must be met by rainwater catchments

Geography - note: important location between Cuba and Central America

People Cayman Islands

Population: 44,270 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 21.1% (male 4,658/female 4,662) 15-64 years: 70.8% (male 15,284/female 16,050) 65 years and over: 8.2% (male 1,699/female 1,917) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 36.83 years male: 36.48 years female: 37.18 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.64% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 12.92 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 4.81 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 18.25 migrant(s)/1,000 population note: major destination for Cubans trying to migrate to the US (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.02 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.89 male(s)/female total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 8.19 deaths/1,000 live births male: 9.39 deaths/1,000 live births female: 6.97 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 79.95 years male: 77.33 years female: 82.6 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.9 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Caymanian(s) adjective: Caymanian

Ethnic groups: mixed 40%, white 20%, black 20%, expatriates of various ethnic groups 20%

Religions: United Church (Presbyterian and Congregational), Anglican, Baptist, Church of God, other Protestant, Roman Catholic

Languages: English

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over has ever attended school total population: 98% male: 98% female: 98% (1970 est.)

Government Cayman Islands

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Cayman Islands

Dependency status: overseas territory of the UK

Government type: British crown colony

Capital: George Town

Administrative divisions: 8 districts; Creek, Eastern, Midland, South Town, Spot Bay, Stake Bay, West End, Western

Independence: none (overseas territory of the UK)

National holiday: Constitution Day, first Monday in July

Constitution: 1959; revised 1972 and 1992

Legal system: British common law and local statutes

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); Governor Bruce DINWIDDY (since 29 May 2002) head of government: Leader of Government Business Kurt TIBBETTS (since 18 May 2005) cabinet: Executive Council (three members appointed by the governor, four members elected by the Legislative Assembly) elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; the governor is appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or coalition is appointed by the governor Leader of Government Business

Legislative branch: unicameral Legislative Assembly (18 seats, three appointed members from the Executive Council and 15 elected by popular vote; members serve four-year terms) elections: last held 11 May 2005 (next to be held 2009) election results: percent of vote - NA%; seats - PPM 9, UDP 5, independent 1

Judicial branch: Summary Court; Grand Court; Cayman Islands Court of Appeal

Political parties and leaders: no national teams (loose groupings of political organizations) were formed for the 2000 elections; United Democratic Party or UDP [leader McKeeva BUSH]; People's Progressive Movement or PPM [leader Kurt TIBBETTS]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: Caricom (associate), CDB, Interpol (subbureau), IOC, UNESCO (associate), UPU

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (overseas territory of the UK)

Flag description: blue, with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and the Caymanian coat of arms centered on the outer half of the flag; the coat of arms includes a pineapple and turtle above a shield with three stars (representing the three islands) and a scroll at the bottom bearing the motto HE HATH FOUNDED IT UPON THE SEAS

Economy Cayman Islands

Economy - overview: With no direct taxation, the islands are a thriving offshore financial center. More than 40,000 companies were registered in the Cayman Islands as of 1998, including almost 600 banks and trust companies; banking assets exceed $500 billion. A stock exchange was opened in 1997. Tourism is also a mainstay, accounting for about 70% of GDP and 75% of foreign currency earnings. The tourist industry is aimed at the luxury market and caters mainly to visitors from North America. Total tourist arrivals exceeded 1.2 million in 1997, with 600,000 from the US. About 90% of the islands' food and consumer goods must be imported. The Caymanians enjoy one of the highest outputs per capita and one of the highest standards of living in the world.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $1.391 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 1.7% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $32,300 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 1.4% industry: 3.2% services: 95.4% (1994 est.)

Labor force: 19,820 (1995)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 1.4%, industry 12.6%, services 86% (1995)

Unemployment rate: 4.1% (1997)

Population below poverty line: NA (2002 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.8% (2002)

Budget: revenues: $265.2 million expenditures: $248.9 million, including capital expenditures of NA (1997)

Agriculture - products: vegetables, fruit; livestock, turtle farming

Industries: tourism, banking, insurance and finance, construction, construction materials, furniture

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - production: 410.8 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 382.1 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 2,400 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Exports: $1.2 million (1999)

Exports - commodities: turtle products, manufactured consumer goods

Exports - partners: mostly US

Imports: $457.4 million (1999)

Imports - commodities: foodstuffs, manufactured goods

Imports - partners: US, Trinidad and Tobago, UK, Netherlands Antilles, Japan

Debt - external: $70 million (1996)

Economic aid - recipient: NA

Currency (code): Caymanian dollar (KYD)

Currency code: KYD

Exchange rates: Caymanian dollars per US dollar - 0.82 (29 October 2001), 0.83 (3 November 1995), 0.85 (22 November 1993)

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Communications Cayman Islands

Telephones - main lines in use: 38,000 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 17,000 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: reasonably good system domestic: liberalization of telecom market in 2003 reflected in falling prices and improving services international: country code - 1-345; 2 submarine fiber optic cables (Maya-1, Cayman-Jamaica); satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 4, shortwave 0 (2004)

Radios: 36,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 4 with cable system (2004)

Televisions: 7,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .ky

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 16 (2000)

Internet users: 9,909 (2003)

Transportation Cayman Islands

Highways: total: 785 km paved: 785 km (2000)

Ports and harbors: Cayman Brac, George Town

Merchant marine: total: 129 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 2,827,837 GRT/4,555,974 DWT by type: bulk carrier 29, cargo 12, chemical tanker 39, liquefied gas 1, petroleum tanker 17, refrigerated cargo 28, roll on/roll off 3 foreign-owned: 126 (Denmark 1, Germany 14, Greece 20, Italy 12, Norway 1, Philippines 1, Sweden 13, Switzerland 11, United Kingdom 9, United States 44) (2005)

Airports: 3 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 2 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Cayman Islands

Military branches: no regular military forces; Royal Cayman Islands Police Force

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of the UK

Transnational Issues Cayman Islands

Disputes - international: none

Illicit drugs: offshore financial center; vulnerable to drug transshipment to the US and Europe

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Central African Republic

Introduction Central African Republic

Background: The former French colony of Ubangi-Shari became the Central African Republic upon independence in 1960. After three tumultuous decades of misrule - mostly by military governments - civilian rule was established in 1993 and lasted for one decade. President Ange-Felix PATASSE's civilian government was plagued by unrest, and in March 2003 he was deposed in a military coup led by General Francois BOZIZE, who has since established a transitional government. Though the government has the tacit support of civil society groups and the main parties, a wide field of affiliated and independent candidates will contest the municipal, legislative, and presidential elections scheduled for February 2005. The government still does not fully control the countryside, where pockets of lawlessness persist.

Geography Central African Republic

Location: Central Africa, north of Democratic Republic of the Congo

Geographic coordinates: 7 00 N, 21 00 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 622,984 sq km land: 622,984 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Texas

Land boundaries: total: 5,203 km border countries: Cameroon 797 km, Chad 1,197 km, Democratic Republic of the Congo 1,577 km, Republic of the Congo 467 km, Sudan 1,165 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: tropical; hot, dry winters; mild to hot, wet summers

Terrain: vast, flat to rolling, monotonous plateau; scattered hills in northeast and southwest

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Oubangui River 335 m highest point: Mont Ngaoui 1,420 m

Natural resources: diamonds, uranium, timber, gold, oil, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 3.1% permanent crops: 0.14% other: 96.76% (2001)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: hot, dry, dusty harmattan winds affect northern areas; floods are common

Environment - current issues: tap water is not potable; poaching has diminished the country's reputation as one of the last great wildlife refuges; desertification; deforestation

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 94 signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea

Geography - note: landlocked; almost the precise center of Africa

People Central African Republic

Population: 3,799,897 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 42.5% (male 813,596/female 802,728) 15-64 years: 54% (male 1,010,696/female 1,041,903) 65 years and over: 3.4% (male 54,345/female 76,629) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 18.12 years male: 17.75 years female: 18.5 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.49% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 35.17 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 20.27 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.97 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.71 male(s)/female total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 91 deaths/1,000 live births male: 97.84 deaths/1,000 live births female: 83.96 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 43.39 years male: 43.27 years female: 43.52 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.5 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 13.5% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 260,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 23,000 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: very high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne disease: malaria respiratory disease: meningococcal meningitis (2004)

Nationality: noun: Central African(s) adjective: Central African

Ethnic groups: Baya 33%, Banda 27%, Mandjia 13%, Sara 10%, Mboum 7%, M'Baka 4%, Yakoma 4%, other 2%

Religions: indigenous beliefs 35%, Protestant 25%, Roman Catholic 25%, Muslim 15% note: animistic beliefs and practices strongly influence the Christian majority

Languages: French (official), Sangho (lingua franca and national language), tribal languages

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 51% male: 63.3% female: 39.9% (2003 est.)

Government Central African Republic

Country name: conventional long form: Central African Republic conventional short form: none local long form: Republique Centrafricaine local short form: none former: Ubangi-Shari, Central African Empire abbreviation: CAR

Government type: republic

Capital: Bangui

Administrative divisions: 14 prefectures (prefectures, singular - prefecture), 2 economic prefectures* (prefectures economiques, singular - prefecture economique), and 1 commune**; Bamingui-Bangoran, Bangui**, Basse-Kotto, Haute-Kotto, Haut-Mbomou, Kemo, Lobaye, Mambere-Kadei, Mbomou, Nana-Grebizi*, Nana-Mambere, Ombella-Mpoko, Ouaka, Ouham, Ouham-Pende, Sangha-Mbaere*, Vakaga

Independence: 13 August 1960 (from France)

National holiday: Republic Day, 1 December (1958)

Constitution: passed by referendum 5 December 2004

Legal system: based on French law

Suffrage: 21 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Francois BOZIZE (since 15 March 2003 coup) head of government: Prime Minister Elie DOTE (since 13 June 2005) note - Celestin GAOMBALET resigned 11 June 2005 cabinet: Council of Ministers elections: president elected to five year term with a two-term limit; next presidential elections scheduled for 10 April 2005; prime minister appointed by the political party with a parliamentary majority

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (109 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms elections: last held 22-23 November and 13 December 1998 (next to be held 13 March 2005) election results: percent of vote by party - MLPC 43%, RDC 18%, MDD 9%, FPP 6%, PSD 5%, ADP 4%, PUN 3%, FODEM 2%, PLD 2%, UPR 1%, FC 1%, independents 6%; seats by party - MLPC 47, RDC 20, MDD 8, FPP 7, PSD 6, ADP 5, PUN 3, FODEM 2, PLD 2, UPR 1, FC 1, independents 7

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Cour Supreme; Constitutional Court (3 judges appointed by the president, 3 by the president of the National Assembly, and 3 by fellow judges); Court of Appeal; Criminal Courts; Inferior Courts

Political parties and leaders: Alliance for Democracy and Progress or ADP [Jacques MBOLIEDAS]; Central African Democratic Assembly or RDC [Andre KOLINGBA]; Civic Forum or FC [Gen. Timothee MALENDOMA]; Democratic Forum for Modernity or FODEM [Charles MASSI]; Liberal Democratic Party or PLD [Nestor KOMBO-NAGUEMON]; Movement for Democracy and Development or MDD [David DACKO]; Movement for the Liberation of the Central African People or MLPC [the party of deposed president, Ange-Felix PATASSE]; Patriotic Front for Progress or FPP [Abel GOUMBA]; People's Union for the Republic or UPR [Pierre Sammy MAKFOY]; National Unity Party or PUN [Jean-Paul NGOUPANDE]; Social Democratic Party or PSD [Enoch LAKOUE]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, BDEAC, CEMAC, FAO, FZ, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, ITU, MIGA, NAM, OIC (observer), OPCW (signatory), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Emmanuel TOUABOY chancery: 1618 22nd Street NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 483-7800 FAX: [1] (202) 332-9893

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Charge d'Affaires James PANOS embassy: Avenue David Dacko, Bangui mailing address: B. P. 924, Bangui telephone: [236] 61 02 00 FAX: [236] 61 44 94 note: the embassy is currently operating with a minimal staff

Flag description: four equal horizontal bands of blue (top), white, green, and yellow with a vertical red band in center; there is a yellow five-pointed star on the hoist side of the blue band

Economy Central African Republic

Economy - overview: Subsistence agriculture, together with forestry, remains the backbone of the economy of the Central African Republic (CAR), with more than 70% of the population living in outlying areas. The agricultural sector generates half of GDP. Timber has accounted for about 16% of export earnings and the diamond industry, for 54%. Important constraints to economic development include the CAR's landlocked position, a poor transportation system, a largely unskilled work force, and a legacy of misdirected macroeconomic policies. Factional fighting between the government and its opponents remains a drag on economic revitalization, with GDP growth at only 0.5% in 2004. Distribution of income is extraordinarily unequal. Grants from France and the international community can only partially meet humanitarian needs.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $4.248 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 0.5% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,100 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 55% industry: 20% services: 25% (2001 est.)

Labor force: NA

Unemployment rate: 8% (23% for Bangui) (2001 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA (1993)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 0.7% highest 10%: 47.7% (1993)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 61.3 (1993)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3.6% (2001 est.)

Budget: revenues: NA expenditures: NA, including capital expenditures of NA

Agriculture - products: cotton, coffee, tobacco, manioc (tapioca), yams, millet, corn, bananas; timber

Industries: gold and diamond mining, logging, brewing, textiles, footwear, assembly of bicycles and motorcycles

Industrial production growth rate: 3% (2002)

Electricity - production: 106 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 19.8% hydro: 80.2% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 98.58 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 2,400 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Exports: $172 million f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Exports - commodities: diamonds, timber, cotton, coffee, tobacco

Exports - partners: Belgium 39.2%, Italy 8.6%, Spain 7.9%, US 6.2%, France 6.1%, Indonesia 5.8%, China 4.9% (2004)

Imports: $136 million f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities: food, textiles, petroleum products, machinery, electrical equipment, motor vehicles, chemicals, pharmaceuticals

Imports - partners: France 17.6%, US 16.3%, Cameroon 9.3%, Belgium 5% (2004)

Debt - external: $881.4 million (2000 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: ODA $73 million; note - traditional budget subsidies from France (2000 est.)

Currency (code): Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XAF); note - responsible authority is the Bank of the Central African States

Currency code: XAF

Exchange rates: Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XAF) per US dollar - 528.29 (2004), 581.2 (2003), 696.99 (2002), 733.04 (2001), 711.98 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Central African Republic

Telephones - main lines in use: 9,000 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 13,000 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: fair system domestic: network consists principally of microwave radio relay and low-capacity, low-powered radiotelephone communication international: country code - 236; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 5, shortwave 1 (2002)

Radios: 283,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (2001)

Televisions: 18,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .cf

Internet hosts: 6 (2002)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2002)

Internet users: 5,000 (2002)

Transportation Central African Republic

Highways: total: 23,810 km paved: 643 km unpaved: 23,167 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: 2,800 km (primarily on the Oubangui and Sangha rivers) (2004)

Ports and harbors: Bangui, Nola, Salo, Nzinga

Airports: 50 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 3 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 47 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 10 914 to 1,523 m: 23 under 914 m: 13 (2004 est.)

Military Central African Republic

Military branches: Central African Armed Forces (FACA): Ground Forces, Air Force; General Directorate of Gendarmerie Inspection (DGIG), Republican Guard (2004)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary and compulsory military service; conscript service obligation is two years (2005)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 758,103 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 330,255 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $15.5 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1% (2004)

Transnational Issues Central African Republic

Disputes - international: about 30,000 refugees fleeing the 2002 civil conflict in the CAR still reside in southern Chad; periodic skirmishes over water and grazing rights among related pastoral populations along the border with southern Sudan persist

Refugees and internally displaced persons: refugees (country of origin): 36,479 (Sudan) 1,864 (Chad) 6,484 (Democratic Republic of the Congo) IDPs: 200,000 (unrest following coup in 2003) (2004)

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Chad

Introduction Chad

Background: Chad, part of France's African holdings until 1960, endured three decades of civil warfare as well as invasions by Libya before a semblance of peace was finally restored in 1990. The government eventually suppressed or came to terms with most political-military groups, settled a territorial dispute with Libya on terms favorable to Chad, drafted a democratic constitution, and held multiparty presidential elections in 1996 and 1997. In 1998, a new rebellion broke out in northern Chad, which sporadically flares up despite two peace agreements signed in 2002 and 2003 between the government and the rebels. Despite movement toward democratic reform, power remains in the hands of an ethnic minority.

Geography Chad

Location: Central Africa, south of Libya

Geographic coordinates: 15 00 N, 19 00 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 1.284 million sq km land: 1,259,200 sq km water: 24,800 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly more than three times the size of California

Land boundaries: total: 5,968 km border countries: Cameroon 1,094 km, Central African Republic 1,197 km, Libya 1,055 km, Niger 1,175 km, Nigeria 87 km, Sudan 1,360 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: tropical in south, desert in north

Terrain: broad, arid plains in center, desert in north, mountains in northwest, lowlands in south

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Djourab Depression 160 m highest point: Emi Koussi 3,415 m

Natural resources: petroleum, uranium, natron, kaolin, fish (Lake Chad), gold, limestone, sand and gravel, salt

Land use: arable land: 2.86% permanent crops: 0.02% other: 97.12% (2001)

Irrigated land: 200 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: hot, dry, dusty harmattan winds occur in north; periodic droughts; locust plagues

Environment - current issues: inadequate supplies of potable water; improper waste disposal in rural areas contributes to soil and water pollution; desertification

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping

Geography - note: landlocked; Lake Chad is the most significant water body in the Sahel

People Chad

Population: 9,826,419 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 47.9% (male 2,365,277/female 2,337,388) 15-64 years: 49.4% (male 2,323,110/female 2,528,086) 65 years and over: 2.8% (male 109,535/female 163,023) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 16.02 years male: 15.32 years female: 16.71 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.95% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 45.98 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 16.41 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.11 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.04 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.92 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.67 male(s)/female total population: 0.95 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 93.82 deaths/1,000 live births male: 103.03 deaths/1,000 live births female: 84.24 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 47.18 years male: 45.55 years female: 48.87 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 6.32 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 4.8% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 200,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 18,000 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: very high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne disease: malaria water contact disease: schistosomiasis respiratory disease: meningococcal meningitis (2004)

Nationality: noun: Chadian(s) adjective: Chadian

Ethnic groups: 200 distinct groups; in the north and center: Arabs, Gorane (Toubou, Daza, Kreda), Zaghawa, Kanembou, Ouaddai, Baguirmi, Hadjerai, Fulbe, Kotoko, Hausa, Boulala, and Maba, most of whom are Muslim; in the south: Sara (Ngambaye, Mbaye, Goulaye), Moundang, Moussei, Massa, most of whom are Christian or animist; about 1,000 French citizens live in Chad

Religions: Muslim 51%, Christian 35%, animist 7%, other 7%

Languages: French (official), Arabic (official), Sara (in south), more than 120 different languages and dialects

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write French or Arabic total population: 47.5% male: 56% female: 39.3% (2003 est.)

Government Chad

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Chad conventional short form: Chad local long form: Republique du Tchad local short form: Tchad

Government type: republic

Capital: N'Djamena

Administrative divisions: 14 prefectures (prefectures, singular - prefecture); Batha, Biltine, Borkou-Ennedi-Tibesti, Chari-Baguirmi, Guera, Kanem, Lac, Logone Occidental, Logone Oriental, Mayo-Kebbi, Moyen-Chari, Ouaddai, Salamat, Tandjile note: instead of 14 prefectures, there may be a new administrative structure of 28 departments (departments, singular - department), and 1 city*; Assongha, Baguirmi, Bahr El Gazal, Bahr Koh, Batha Oriental, Batha Occidental, Biltine, Borkou, Dababa, Ennedi, Guera, Hadjer Lamis, Kabia, Kanem, Lac, Lac Iro, Logone Occidental, Logone Oriental, Mandoul, Mayo-Boneye, Mayo-Dallah, Monts de Lam, N'Djamena*, Ouaddai, Salamat, Sila, Tandjile Oriental, Tandjile Occidental, Tibesti

Independence: 11 August 1960 (from France)

National holiday: Independence Day, 11 August (1960)

Constitution: passed by referendum 31 March 1996

Legal system: based on French civil law system and Chadian customary law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Lt. Gen. Idriss DEBY (since 4 December 1990) head of government: Prime Minister Pascal YOADIMNADJI (since 3 February 2005) cabinet: Council of State, members appointed by the president on the recommendation of the prime minister elections: president elected by popular vote to serve five-year term; if no candidate receives at least 50% of the total vote, the two candidates receiving the most votes must stand for a second round of voting; last held 20 May 2001 (next to be held NA 2006); prime minister appointed by the president election results: Lt. Gen. Idriss DEBY reelected president; percent of vote - Lt. Gen. Idriss DEBY 63%, Ngarlegy YORONGAR 16%, Saleh KEBZABO 7%

Legislative branch: bicameral according to constitution, consists of a National Assembly (155 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms) and a Senate (not yet created and size unspecified, members to serve six-year terms, one-third of membership renewable every two years) elections: National Assembly - last held 21 April 2002 (next to be held in April 2006) election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - MPS 110, RDP 12, FAR 9, RNDP 5, URD 5, UNDR 3, others 11

Judicial branch: Supreme Court; Court of Appeal; Criminal Courts; Magistrate Courts

Political parties and leaders: Federation Action for the Republic or FAR [Ngarlejy YORONGAR]; National Rally for Development and Progress or RNDP [Mamadou BISSO]; National Union for Democracy and Renewal or UNDR [Saleh KEBZABO]; Patriotic Salvation Movement or MPS [Mahamat Saleh AHMAT, chairman]; Rally for Democracy and Progress or RDP [Lol Mahamat CHOUA]; Union for Renewal and Democracy or URD [Gen. Wadal Abdelkader KAMOUGUE]; Viva Rally for Development and Progress or Viva RNDP [Delwa Kassire COUMAKOYE]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, BDEAC, CEMAC, FAO, FZ, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, ITU, MIGA, NAM, OIC, ONUB, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNOCI, UPU, WCL, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Mahamat Adam BECHIR chancery: 2002 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20009 telephone: [1] (202) 462-4009 FAX: [1] (202) 265-1937

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Marc WALL embassy: Avenue Felix Eboue, N'Djamena mailing address: B. P. 413, N'Djamena telephone: [235] (51) 70-09 FAX: [235] (51) 56-54

Flag description: three equal vertical bands of blue (hoist side), yellow, and red; similar to the flag of Romania; also similar to the flags of Andorra and Moldova, both of which have a national coat of arms centered in the yellow band; design was based on the flag of France

Economy Chad

Economy - overview: Chad's primarily agricultural economy will continue to be boosted by major oilfield and pipeline projects that began in 2000. Over 80% of Chad's population relies on subsistence farming and livestock raising for its livelihood. Cotton, cattle, and gum arabic provide the bulk of Chad's export earnings; Chad began to export oil in 2004. Chad's economy has long been handicapped by its landlocked position, high energy costs, and a history of instability. Chad relies on foreign assistance and foreign capital for most public and private sector investment projects. A consortium led by two US companies has been investing $3.7 billion to develop oil reserves estimated at 1 billion barrels in southern Chad. Oil production came on stream in late 2003.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $15.66 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 38% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,600 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 22.6% industry: 35.6% services: 41.7% (2004 est.)

Labor force: NA

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture more than 80% (subsistence farming, herding, and fishing)

Unemployment rate: NA

Population below poverty line: 80% (2001 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 8% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 24.7% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $1.131 billion expenditures: $957.7 million, including capital expenditures of $146 million (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: cotton, sorghum, millet, peanuts, rice, potatoes, manioc (tapioca); cattle, sheep, goats, camels

Industries: oil, cotton textiles, meatpacking, beer brewing, natron (sodium carbonate), soap, cigarettes, construction materials

Industrial production growth rate: 5% (1995)

Electricity - production: 96.13 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 89.4 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 200,000 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 1,500 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Current account balance: $330.2 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $365 million f.o.b. (2003 est.)

Exports - commodities: cotton, cattle, gum arabic

Exports - partners: US 67.8%, China 21.5%, Portugal 4.3% (2004)

Imports: $500.7 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and transportation equipment, industrial goods, petroleum products, foodstuffs, textiles

Imports - partners: France 21.9%, Cameroon 16.1%, US 10.8%, Portugal 10.4%, Germany 6.4%, Belgium 4.6% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $652.7 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $1.1 billion (2000 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $238.3 million received; note - $125 million committed by Taiwan (August 1997); $30 million committed by African Development Bank; ODA $150 million (2001 est.)

Currency (code): Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XAF); note - responsible authority is the Bank of the Central African States

Currency code: XAF

Exchange rates: Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XAF) per US dollar - 528.29 (2004), 581.2 (2003), 696.99 (2002), 733.04 (2001), 711.98 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Chad

Telephones - main lines in use: 11,800 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 65,000 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: primitive system domestic: fair system of radiotelephone communication stations international: country code - 235; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 2, FM 4, shortwave 5 (2002)

Radios: 1.67 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (2002)

Televisions: 10,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .td

Internet hosts: 8 (2004)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2002)

Internet users: 15,000 (2002)

Transportation Chad

Highways: total: 33,400 km paved: 267 km unpaved: 33,133 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: Chari and Legone rivers are navigable only in wet season (2002)

Pipelines: oil 205 km (2004)

Airports: 50 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 7 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 3 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 44 1,524 to 2,437 m: 14 914 to 1,523 m: 20 under 914 m: 10 (2004 est.)

Military Chad

Military branches: Chadian National Army (Armee Nationale Tchadienne, ANT), Air Force, Gendarmerie (2004)

Military service age and obligation: 20 years of age for conscripts, with 3-year service obligation; 18 years of age for volunteers; no minimum age restriction for volunteers with consent from a guardian (2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 20-49: 1,559,382 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 20-49: 834,695 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 95,228 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $101.3 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 2.1% (2004)

Transnational Issues Chad

Disputes - international: since 2003, Janjawid armed militia and Sudanese military have driven about 200,000 Darfur region refugees into eastern Chad; Chad remains an important mediator in the Sudanese civil conflict; Chadian Aozou rebels reside in southern Libya; only Nigeria and Cameroon have heeded the Lake Chad Commission's admonition to ratify the delimitation treaty which also includes Chad and Niger

Refugees and internally displaced persons: refugees (country of origin): 200,000 (Sudan) 30,000 (Central African Republic) (2004)

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Chile

Introduction Chile

Background: Prior to the coming of the Spanish in the 16th century, northern Chile was under Inca rule while Araucanian Indians inhabited central and southern Chile; the latter were not completely subjugated until the early 1880s. Although Chile declared its independence in 1810, decisive victory over the Spanish was not achieved until 1818. In the War of the Pacific (1879-84), Chile defeated Peru and Bolivia and won its present northern lands. A three-year-old Marxist government of Salvador ALLENDE was overthrown in 1973 by a dictatorial military regime led by Augusto PINOCHET, who ruled until a freely elected president was installed in 1990. Sound economic policies, maintained consistently since the 1980s, have contributed to steady growth and have helped secure the country's commitment to democratic and representative government. Chile has increasingly assumed regional and international leadership roles befitting its status as a stable, democratic nation.

Geography Chile

Location: Southern South America, bordering the South Pacific Ocean, between Argentina and Peru

Geographic coordinates: 30 00 S, 71 00 W

Map references: South America

Area: total: 756,950 sq km land: 748,800 sq km water: 8,150 sq km note: includes Easter Island (Isla de Pascua) and Isla Sala y Gomez

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than twice the size of Montana

Land boundaries: total: 6,171 km border countries: Argentina 5,150 km, Bolivia 861 km, Peru 160 km

Coastline: 6,435 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200/350 nm

Climate: temperate; desert in north; Mediterranean in central region; cool and damp in south

Terrain: low coastal mountains; fertile central valley; rugged Andes in east

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m highest point: Nevado Ojos del Salado 6,880 m

Natural resources: copper, timber, iron ore, nitrates, precious metals, molybdenum, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 2.65% permanent crops: 0.42% other: 96.93% (2001)

Irrigated land: 18,000 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: severe earthquakes; active volcanism; tsunamis

Environment - current issues: widespread deforestation and mining threaten natural resources; air pollution from industrial and vehicle emissions; water pollution from raw sewage

Environment - international agreements: party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: strategic location relative to sea lanes between Atlantic and Pacific Oceans (Strait of Magellan, Beagle Channel, Drake Passage); Atacama Desert is one of world's driest regions

People Chile

Population: 15,980,912 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 25.2% (male 2,062,735/female 1,970,913) 15-64 years: 66.7% (male 5,320,870/female 5,342,771) 65 years and over: 8% (male 534,737/female 748,886) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 30.07 years male: 29.17 years female: 31.05 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.97% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 15.44 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 5.76 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.71 male(s)/female total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 8.8 deaths/1,000 live births male: 9.55 deaths/1,000 live births female: 8.01 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 76.58 years male: 73.3 years female: 80.03 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.02 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.3% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 26,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 1,400 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Chilean(s) adjective: Chilean

Ethnic groups: white and white-Amerindian 95%, Amerindian 3%, other 2%

Religions: Roman Catholic 89%, Protestant 11%, Jewish NEGL%

Languages: Spanish

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 96.2% male: 96.4% female: 96.1% (2003 est.)

Government Chile

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Chile conventional short form: Chile local long form: Republica de Chile local short form: Chile

Government type: republic

Capital: Santiago

Administrative divisions: 13 regions (regiones, singular - region); Aisen del General Carlos Ibanez del Campo, Antofagasta, Araucania, Atacama, Bio-Bio, Coquimbo, Libertador General Bernardo O'Higgins, Los Lagos, Magallanes y de la Antartica Chilena, Maule, Region Metropolitana (Santiago), Tarapaca, Valparaiso note: the US does not recognize claims to Antarctica

Independence: 18 September 1810 (from Spain)

National holiday: Independence Day, 18 September (1810)

Constitution: 11 September 1980, effective 11 March 1981; amended 30 July 1989, 1993, and 1997

Legal system: based on Code of 1857 derived from Spanish law and subsequent codes influenced by French and Austrian law; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction note: Chile is in the process of completely overhauling its criminal justice system; a new, US-style adversarial system is being gradually implemented throughout the country with the final stage of implementation in the Santiago metropolitan region expected in June 2005

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branch: chief of state: President Ricardo LAGOS Escobar (since 11 March 2000); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government head of government: President Ricardo LAGOS Escobar (since 11 March 2000); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president elections: president elected by popular vote for a six-year term; election last held 12 December 1999, with runoff election held 16 January 2000 (next to be held December 2005) election results: Ricardo LAGOS Escobar elected president; percent of vote - Ricardo LAGOS Escobar 51.32%, Joaquin LAVIN 48.68%

Legislative branch: bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of the Senate or Senado (48 seats, 38 elected by popular vote, 9 designated members, and 1 former president who has served a full six-year term and is senator for life); elected members serve eight-year terms (one-half elected every four years) and the Chamber of Deputies or Camara de Diputados (120 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms) elections: Senate - last held 16 December 2001 (next to be held December 2005); Chamber of Deputies - last held 16 December 2001 (next to be held December 2005) election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - CPD 20 (PDC 12, PS 5, PPD 3), APC 16 (UDI 9, RN 7), independents 2; Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - CPD 62 (PDC 24, PPD 21, PS 11, PRSD 6), UDI 35, RN 22, independent 1

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Corte Suprema (judges are appointed by the president and ratified by the Senate from lists of candidates provided by the court itself; the president of the Supreme Court is elected by the 21-member court); Constitutional Tribunal

Political parties and leaders: Alliance for Chile ("Alianza") or APC (including National Renewal or RN [Sebastian PINERA] and Independent Democratic Union or UDI [Pablo LONGUEIRA]); Coalition of Parties for Democracy ("Concertacion") or CPD (including Christian Democratic Party or PDC [Adolfo ZALDIVAR], Socialist Party or PS [Gonzalo MARTNER], Party for Democracy or PPD [Victor BARRUETO], Radical Social Democratic Party or PRSD [Orlando CANTUARIAS]); Communist Party or PC [Gladys MARIN]

Political pressure groups and leaders: revitalized university student federations at all major universities; Roman Catholic Church; United Labor Central or CUT includes trade unionists from the country's five largest labor confederations

International organization participation: APEC, BIS, CSN, FAO, G-15, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, LAES, LAIA, Mercosur (associate), MIGA, MINUSTAH, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, RG, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMIK, UNMOGIP, UNTSO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Andres BIANCHI chancery: 1732 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036 telephone: [1] (202) 785-1746 FAX: [1] (202) 887-5579 consulate(s) general: Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and San Juan (Puerto Rico)

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Craig A. KELLY embassy: Avenida Andres Bello 2800, Las Condes, Santiago mailing address: APO AA 34033 telephone: [56] (2) 232-2600 FAX: [56] (2) 330-3710

Flag description: two equal horizontal bands of white (top) and red; there is a blue square the same height as the white band at the hoist-side end of the white band; the square bears a white five-pointed star in the center representing a guide to progress and honor; blue symbolizes the sky, white is for the snow-covered Andes, and red stands for the blood spilled to achieve independence; design was influenced by the US flag

Economy Chile

Economy - overview: Chile has a market-oriented economy characterized by a high level of foreign trade. During the early 1990s, Chile's reputation as a role model for economic reform was strengthened when the democratic government of Patricio AYLWIN - which took over from the military in 1990 - deepened the economic reform initiated by the military government. Growth in real GDP averaged 8% during 1991-97, but fell to half that level in 1998 because of tight monetary policies implemented to keep the current account deficit in check and because of lower export earnings - the latter a product of the global financial crisis. A severe drought exacerbated the recession in 1999, reducing crop yields and causing hydroelectric shortfalls and electricity rationing, and Chile experienced negative economic growth for the first time in more than 15 years. Despite the effects of the recession, Chile maintained its reputation for strong financial institutions and sound policy that have given it the strongest sovereign bond rating in South America. By the end of 1999, exports and economic activity had begun to recover, and growth rebounded to 4.2% in 2000. Growth fell back to 3.1% in 2001 and 2.1% in 2002, largely due to lackluster global growth and the devaluation of the Argentine peso. Chile's economy began a slow recovery in 2003, growing 3.2% and accelerated to 5.8% in 2004. GDP growth benefited from high copper prices, solid export earnings (particularly forestry, fishing, and mining), and stepped-up foreign direct investment. Unemployment, however, remains stubbornly high. Chile deepened its longstanding commitment to trade liberalization with the signing of a free trade agreement with the US, which took effect on 1 January 2004.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $169.1 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 5.8% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $10,700 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 6.3% industry: 38.2% services: 55.5% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 6.2 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 13.6%, industry 23.4%, services 63% (2003)

Unemployment rate: 8.5% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 20.6% (2000)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 1.2% highest 10%: 47% (2000)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 57.1 (2000)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.4% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 23.9% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $21.53 billion expenditures: $19.95 billion, including capital expenditures of $3.33 billion (2004 est.)

Public debt: 12.8% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: grapes, apples, pears, onions, wheat, corn, oats, peaches, garlic, asparagus, beans, beef, poultry, wool; fish; timber

Industries: copper, other minerals, foodstuffs, fish processing, iron and steel, wood and wood products, transport equipment, cement, textiles

Industrial production growth rate: 7.8% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 48.6 billion kWh (2004)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 47% hydro: 51.5% nuclear: 0% other: 1.4% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 41.8 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 1.813 billion kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 18,500 bbl/day (2003 est.)

Oil - consumption: 240,000 bbl/day (2003 est.)

Oil - exports: 0 bbl/day (2003)

Oil - imports: 221,500 bbl/day (2003 est.)

Oil - proved reserves: 150 million bbl (1 January 2004)

Natural gas - production: 1.18 billion cu m (2002 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 6.517 billion cu m (2002 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2002)

Natural gas - imports: 5.337 billion cu m (2002 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 99.05 billion cu m (1 January 2004)

Current account balance: $2.185 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $29.2 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: copper, fruit, fish products, paper and pulp, chemicals, wine

Exports - partners: US 14%, Japan 11.4%, China 9.9%, South Korea 5.5%, Netherlands 5.1%, Brazil 4.3%, Italy 4.1%, Mexico 4% (2004)

Imports: $22.53 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: petroleum and petroleum products, chemicals, electrical and telecommunications equipment, industrial machinery, vehicles, natural gas

Imports - partners: Argentina 17%, US 14%, Brazil 11.2%, China 7.4% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $16.02 billion (2004)

Debt - external: $44.6 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: ODA, $0 (2002)

Currency (code): Chilean peso (CLP)

Currency code: CLP

Exchange rates: Chilean pesos per US dollar - 609.37 (2004), 691.43 (2003), 688.94 (2002), 634.94 (2001), 539.59 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Chile

Telephones - main lines in use: 3.467 million (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 6,445,700 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: modern system based on extensive microwave radio relay facilities domestic: extensive microwave radio relay links; domestic satellite system with 3 earth stations international: country code - 56; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 180 (eight inactive), FM 64, shortwave 17 (one inactive) (1998)

Radios: 5.18 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 63 (plus 121 repeaters) (1997)

Televisions: 3.15 million (1997)

Internet country code: .cl

Internet hosts: 202,429 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 7 (2000)

Internet users: 3.575 million (2002)

Transportation Chile

Railways: total: 6,585 km broad gauge: 2,831 km 1.676-m gauge (1,317 km electrified) narrow gauge: 3,754 km 1.000-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 79,605 km paved: 16,080 km (including 407 km of expressways) unpaved: 63,525 km (2001)

Pipelines: gas 2,583 km; gas/lpg 42 km; liquid petroleum gas 539 km; oil 1,003 km; refined products 757 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Antofagasta, Arica, Huasco, Iquique, Lirquen, San Antonio, San Vicente, Valparaiso

Merchant marine: total: 47 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 725,216 GRT/954,519 DWT by type: bulk carrier 10, cargo 6, chemical tanker 9, container 1, liquefied gas 3, passenger 3, passenger/cargo 2, petroleum tanker 8, roll on/roll off 1, vehicle carrier 4 registered in other countries: 21 (2005)

Airports: 364 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 71 over 3,047 m: 6 2,438 to 3,047 m: 6 1,524 to 2,437 m: 21 914 to 1,523 m: 23 under 914 m: 15 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 293 over 3,047 m: 1 2,438 to 3,047 m: 4 1,524 to 2,437 m: 11 914 to 1,523 m: 60 under 914 m: 217 (2004 est.)

Military Chile

Military branches: Army of the Nation, National Navy (includes naval air, Coast Guard, and Marine Corps), Chilean Air Force, Chilean Carabineros (National Police)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for compulsory military service; all citizens 18-45 are obligated to perform military service; conscript service obligation - 12 months for Army, 24 months for Navy and Air Force (2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 3,815,761 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 3,123,281 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 140,084 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $3.42 billion (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 3.8% (2004)

Transnational Issues Chile

Disputes - international: Chile rebuffs Bolivia's reactivated claim to restore the Atacama corridor, ceded to Chile in 1884, offering instead unrestricted but not sovereign maritime access through Chile to Bolivian gas and other commodities; Peru proposes changing its latitudinal maritime boundary with Chile to an equidistance line with a southwestern axis; territorial claim in Antarctica (Chilean Antarctic Territory) partially overlaps Argentine and British claims

Illicit drugs: important transshipment country for cocaine destined for Europe and the US; economic prosperity and increasing trade have made Chile more attractive to traffickers seeking to launder drug profits, especially through the Iquique Free Trade Zone, but a new anti-money-laundering law improves controls; imported precursors passed on to Bolivia; domestic cocaine consumption is rising

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@China

Introduction China

Background: For centuries China stood as a leading civilization, outpacing the rest of the world in the arts and sciences, but in the 19th and early 20th centuries, the country was beset by civil unrest, major famines, military defeats, and foreign occupation. After World War II, the Communists under MAO Zedong established an autocratic socialist system that, while ensuring China's sovereignty, imposed strict controls over everyday life and cost the lives of tens of millions of people. After 1978, his successor DENG Xiaoping and other leaders focused on market-oriented economic development and by 2000 output had quadrupled. For much of the population, living standards have improved dramatically and the room for personal choice has expanded, yet political controls remain tight.

Geography China

Location: Eastern Asia, bordering the East China Sea, Korea Bay, Yellow Sea, and South China Sea, between North Korea and Vietnam

Geographic coordinates: 35 00 N, 105 00 E

Map references: Asia

Area: total: 9,596,960 sq km land: 9,326,410 sq km water: 270,550 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than the US

Land boundaries: total: 22,117 km border countries: Afghanistan 76 km, Bhutan 470 km, Burma 2,185 km, India 3,380 km, Kazakhstan 1,533 km, North Korea 1,416 km, Kyrgyzstan 858 km, Laos 423 km, Mongolia 4,677 km, Nepal 1,236 km, Pakistan 523 km, Russia (northeast) 3,605 km, Russia (northwest) 40 km, Tajikistan 414 km, Vietnam 1,281 km regional borders: Hong Kong 30 km, Macau 0.34 km

Coastline: 14,500 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 24 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

Climate: extremely diverse; tropical in south to subarctic in north

Terrain: mostly mountains, high plateaus, deserts in west; plains, deltas, and hills in east

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Turpan Pendi -154 m highest point: Mount Everest 8,850 m

Natural resources: coal, iron ore, petroleum, natural gas, mercury, tin, tungsten, antimony, manganese, molybdenum, vanadium, magnetite, aluminum, lead, zinc, uranium, hydropower potential (world's largest)

Land use: arable land: 15.4% permanent crops: 1.25% other: 83.35% (2001)

Irrigated land: 525,800 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: frequent typhoons (about five per year along southern and eastern coasts); damaging floods; tsunamis; earthquakes; droughts; land subsidence

Environment - current issues: air pollution (greenhouse gases, sulfur dioxide particulates) from reliance on coal produces acid rain; water shortages, particularly in the north; water pollution from untreated wastes; deforestation; estimated loss of one-fifth of agricultural land since 1949 to soil erosion and economic development; desertification; trade in endangered species

Environment - international agreements: party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: world's fourth largest country (after Russia, Canada, and US); Mount Everest on the border with Nepal is the world's tallest peak

People China

Population: 1,306,313,812 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 21.4% (male 148,134,928/female 131,045,415) 15-64 years: 71% (male 477,182,072/female 450,664,933) 65 years and over: 7.6% (male 47,400,282/female 51,886,182) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 32.26 years male: 31.87 years female: 32.67 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.58% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 13.14 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 6.94 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.4 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.12 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.13 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.06 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.91 male(s)/female total population: 1.06 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 24.18 deaths/1,000 live births male: 21.21 deaths/1,000 live births female: 27.5 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 72.27 years male: 70.65 years female: 74.09 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.72 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.1% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 840,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 44,000 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Chinese (singular and plural) adjective: Chinese

Ethnic groups: Han Chinese 91.9%, Zhuang, Uygur, Hui, Yi, Tibetan, Miao, Manchu, Mongol, Buyi, Korean, and other nationalities 8.1%

Religions: Daoist (Taoist), Buddhist, Muslim 1%-2%, Christian 3%-4% note: officially atheist (2002 est.)

Languages: Standard Chinese or Mandarin (Putonghua, based on the Beijing dialect), Yue (Cantonese), Wu (Shanghaiese), Minbei (Fuzhou), Minnan (Hokkien-Taiwanese), Xiang, Gan, Hakka dialects, minority languages (see Ethnic groups entry)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 90.9% male: 95.1% female: 86.5% (2002)

Government China

Country name: conventional long form: People's Republic of China conventional short form: China local long form: Zhonghua Renmin Gongheguo local short form: Zhong Guo abbreviation: PRC

Government type: Communist state

Capital: Beijing

Administrative divisions: 23 provinces (sheng, singular and plural), 5 autonomous regions (zizhiqu, singular and plural), and 4 municipalities (shi, singular and plural) : provinces: Anhui, Fujian, Gansu, Guangdong, Guizhou, Hainan, Hebei, Heilongjiang, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, Jiangxi, Jilin, Liaoning, Qinghai, Shaanxi, Shandong, Shanxi, Sichuan, Yunnan, Zhejiang : autonomous regions: Guangxi, Nei Mongol, Ningxia, Xinjiang, Xizang (Tibet) : municipalities: Beijing, Chongqing, Shanghai, Tianjin note: China considers Taiwan its 23rd province; see separate entries for the special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau

Independence: 221 BC (unification under the Qin or Ch'in Dynasty); 1 January 1912 (Manchu Dynasty replaced by a Republic); 1 October 1949 (People's Republic established)

National holiday: Anniversary of the Founding of the People's Republic of China, 1 October (1949)

Constitution: most recent promulgation 4 December 1982

Legal system: a complex amalgam of custom and statute, largely criminal law; rudimentary civil code in effect since 1 January 1987; new legal codes in effect since 1 January 1980; continuing efforts are being made to improve civil, administrative, criminal, and commercial law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President HU Jintao (since 15 March 2003) and Vice President ZENG Qinghong (since 15 March 2003) head of government: Premier WEN Jiabao (since 16 March 2003); Vice Premiers HUANG Ju (since 17 March 2003), WU Yi (17 March 2003), ZENG Peiyan (since 17 March 2003), and HUI Liangyu (since 17 March 2003) cabinet: State Council appointed by the National People's Congress (NPC) elections: president and vice president elected by the National People's Congress for five-year terms; elections last held 15-17 March 2003 (next to be held mid-March 2008); premier nominated by the president, confirmed by the National People's Congress election results: HU Jintao elected president by the Tenth National People's Congress with a total of 2,937 votes (four delegates voted against him, four abstained, and 38 did not vote); ZENG Qinghong elected vice president by the Tenth National People's Congress with a total of 2,578 votes (177 delegates voted against him, 190 abstained, and 38 did not vote); two seats were vacant

Legislative branch: unicameral National People's Congress or Quanguo Renmin Daibiao Dahui (2,985 seats; members elected by municipal, regional, and provincial people's congresses to serve five-year terms) elections: last held December 2002-February 2003 (next to be held late 2007-February 2008) election results: percent of vote - NA%; seats - NA

Judicial branch: Supreme People's Court (judges appointed by the National People's Congress); Local Peoples Courts (comprise higher, intermediate and local courts); Special Peoples Courts (primarily military, maritime, and railway transport courts)

Political parties and leaders: Chinese Communist Party or CCP [HU Jintao, General Secretary of the Central Committee]; eight registered small parties controlled by CCP

Political pressure groups and leaders: no substantial political opposition groups exist, although the government has identified the Falungong spiritual movement and the China Democracy Party as subversive groups

International organization participation: AfDB, APEC, APT, ARF, AsDB, ASEAN (dialogue partner), BIS, CDB, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO, ITU, LAIA (observer), MIGA, MONUC, NAM (observer), NSG, OAS (observer), ONUB, OPCW, PCA, SCO, UN, UN Security Council, UNAMSIL, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNMEE, UNMIL, UNMOVIC, UNOCI, UNTSO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador YANG Jiechi chancery: 2300 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 328-2500 FAX: [1] (202) 328-2582 consulate(s) general: Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco consulate(s): Los Angeles

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Clark T. RANDT, Jr. embassy: Xiu Shui Bei Jie 3, 100600 Beijing mailing address: PSC 461, Box 50, FPO AP 96521-0002 telephone: [86] (10) 6532-3831 FAX: [86] (10) 6532-6929 consulate(s) general: Chengdu, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Shenyang

Flag description: red with a large yellow five-pointed star and four smaller yellow five-pointed stars (arranged in a vertical arc toward the middle of the flag) in the upper hoist-side corner

Economy China

Economy - overview: In late 1978 the Chinese leadership began moving the economy from a sluggish, inefficient, Soviet-style centrally planned economy to a more market-oriented system. Whereas the system operates within a political framework of strict Communist control, the economic influence of non-state organizations and individual citizens has been steadily increasing. The authorities switched to a system of household and village responsibility in agriculture in place of the old collectivization, increased the authority of local officials and plant managers in industry, permitted a wide variety of small-scale enterprises in services and light manufacturing, and opened the economy to increased foreign trade and investment. The result has been a quadrupling of GDP since 1978. Measured on a purchasing power parity (PPP) basis, China in 2004 stood as the second-largest economy in the world after the US, although in per capita terms the country is still poor. Agriculture and industry have posted major gains especially in coastal areas near Hong Kong and opposite Taiwan and in Shanghai, where foreign investment has helped spur output of both domestic and export goods. The leadership, however, often has experienced - as a result of its hybrid system - the worst results of socialism (bureaucracy and lassitude) and of capitalism (growing income disparities and rising unemployment). China thus has periodically backtracked, retightening central controls at intervals. The government has struggled to (a) sustain adequate jobs growth for tens of millions of workers laid off from state-owned enterprises, migrants, and new entrants to the work force; (b) reduce corruption and other economic crimes; and (c) keep afloat the large state-owned enterprises, many of which had been shielded from competition by subsidies and had been losing the ability to pay full wages and pensions. From 100 to 150 million surplus rural workers are adrift between the villages and the cities, many subsisting through part-time, low-paying jobs. Popular resistance, changes in central policy, and loss of authority by rural cadres have weakened China's population control program, which is essential to maintaining long-term growth in living standards. At the same time, one demographic consequence of the "one child" policy is that China is now one of the most rapidly aging countries in the world. Another long-term threat to growth is the deterioration in the environment - notably air pollution, soil erosion, and the steady fall of the water table especially in the north. China continues to lose arable land because of erosion and economic development. As part of its effort to gradually slow the rapid economic growth seen in 2004, Beijing says it will reduce somewhat its spending on infrastructure in 2005, while continuing to focus on poverty relief and through rural tax reform. Accession to the World Trade Organization helps strengthen its ability to maintain strong growth rates but at the same time puts additional pressure on the hybrid system of strong political controls and growing market influences. China has benefited from a huge expansion in computer Internet use, with 94 million users at the end of 2004. Foreign investment remains a strong element in China's remarkable economic growth. Shortages of electric power and raw materials may affect industrial output in 2005. More power generating capacity is scheduled to come on line in 2006. In its rivalry with India as an economic power, China has a lead in the absorption of technology, the rising prominence in world trade, and the alleviation of poverty; India has one important advantage in its relative mastery of the English language, but the number of competent Chinese English-speakers is growing rapidly.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $7.262 trillion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 9.1% (official data) (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $5,600 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 13.8% industry and construction: 52.9% services: 33.3% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 760.8 million (2003)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 49%, industry 22%, services 29% (2003 est.)

Unemployment rate: 9.8% in urban areas; substantial unemployment and underemployment in rural areas; an official Chinese journal estimated overall unemployment (including rural areas) for 2003 at 20% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 10% (2001 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2.4% highest 10%: 30.4% (1998)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 44 (2002)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 4.1% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 46% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $317.9 billion expenditures: $348.9 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: 31.4% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: rice, wheat, potatoes, corn, peanuts, tea, millet, barley, apples, cotton, oilseed, pork, fish

Industries: mining and ore processing, iron, steel, aluminum, and other metals; coal; machine building; armaments; textiles and apparel; petroleum; cement; chemicals; fertilizers; consumer products, including footwear, toys, and electronics; food processing; transportation equipment, including automobiles, rail cars and locomotives, ships, and aircraft; telecommunications equipment, commercial space launch vehicles and satellites

Industrial production growth rate: 17.1% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 1.91 trillion kWh (2003)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 80.2% hydro: 18.5% nuclear: 1.2% other: 0.1% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 1.63 trillion kWh (2003)

Electricity - exports: 10.38 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 2.3 billion kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 3.392 million bbl/day (2003 est.)

Oil - consumption: 4.956 million bbl/day (2002 est.)

Oil - exports: 427,800 bbl/day (2002)

Oil - imports: 2.414 million bbl/day (2002)

Oil - proved reserves: 17.74 billion bbl (2004 est.)

Natural gas - production: 35 billion cu m (2003 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 29.18 billion cu m (2002 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2002 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2002 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 2.23 trillion cu m (2004)

Current account balance: $30.32 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $583.1 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: machinery and equipment, plastics, optical and medical equipment, iron and steel

Exports - partners: US 21.1%, Hong Kong 17%, Japan 12.4%, South Korea 4.7%, Germany 4% (2004)

Imports: $552.4 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment, oil and mineral fuels, plastics, optical and medical equipment, organic chemicals, iron and steel

Imports - partners: Japan 16.8%, Taiwan 11.4%, South Korea 11.1%, US 8%, Germany 5.4% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $609.9 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $233.3 billion (3rd quarter 2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: NA

Currency (code): yuan (CNY) note:: also referred to as the Renminbi (RMB)

Currency code: CNY

Exchange rates: yuan per US dollar - 8.2768 (2004), 8.277 (2003), 8.277 (2002), 8.2771 (2001), 8.2785 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications China

Telephones - main lines in use: 263 million (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 269 million (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: domestic and international services are increasingly available for private use; unevenly distributed domestic system serves principal cities, industrial centers, and many towns domestic: interprovincial fiber-optic trunk lines and cellular telephone systems have been installed; a domestic satellite system with 55 earth stations is in place international: country code - 86; satellite earth stations - 5 Intelsat (4 Pacific Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean), 1 Intersputnik (Indian Ocean region) and 1 Inmarsat (Pacific and Indian Ocean regions); several international fiber-optic links to Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Russia, and Germany (2000)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 369, FM 259, shortwave 45 (1998)

Radios: 417 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 3,240 (of which 209 are operated by China Central Television, 31 are provincial TV stations and nearly 3,000 are local city stations) (1997)

Televisions: 400 million (1997)

Internet country code: .cn

Internet hosts: 160,421 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 3 (2000)

Internet users: 94 million (2004)

Transportation China

Railways: total: 71,898 km standard gauge: 71,898 km 1.435-m gauge (18,115 km electrified) dual gauge: 23,945 km (multiple track not included in total) (2002)

Highways: total: 1,765,222 km paved: 395,410 km (with at least 25,130 km of expressways) unpaved: 1,369,812 km (2002 est.)

Waterways: 121,557 km (2002)

Pipelines: gas 15,890 km; oil 14,478 km; refined products 3,280 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Dalian, Guangzhou, Nanjing, Ningbo, Qingdao, Qinhuangdao, Shanghai

Merchant marine: total: 1,649 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 18,724,653 GRT/27,749,784 DWT by type: barge carrier 2, bulk carrier 362, cargo 696, chemical tanker 38, combination ore/oil 1, container 135, liquefied gas 30, passenger 7, passenger/cargo 81, petroleum tanker 246, refrigerated cargo 30, roll on/roll off 11, vehicle carrier 10 foreign-owned: 9 (Hong Kong 4, Japan 2, South Korea 2, United States 1) registered in other countries: 872 (2005)

Airports: 472 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 383 over 3,047 m: 53 2,438 to 3,047 m: 116 1,524 to 2,437 m: 141 914 to 1,523 m: 23 under 914 m: 50 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 89 over 3,047 m: 5 2,438 to 3,047 m: 4 1,524 to 2,437 m: 13 914 to 1,523 m: 32 under 914 m: 35 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 15 (2004 est.)

Military China

Military branches: People's Liberation Army (PLA): Ground Forces, Navy (includes marines and naval aviation), Air Force (includes Airborne Forces), and II Artillery Corps (strategic missile force); People's Armed Police Force (internal security troops considered to be an adjunct to the PLA); Militia (2003)

Military service age and obligation: 18-22 years of age for compulsory military service, with 24-month service obligation; no minimum age for voluntary service; 17 years of age for women who meet requirements for specific military jobs (2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 342,956,265 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 281,240,272 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 13,186,433 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $67.49 billion (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 4.3% (2004)

Transnational Issues China

Disputes - international: in 2005, China and India initiate drafting principles to resolve all aspects of their extensive boundary and territorial disputes together with a security and foreign policy dialogue to consolidate discussions related to the boundary, regional nuclear proliferation, and other matters; recent talks and confidence-building measures have begun to defuse tensions over Kashmir, site of the world's largest and most militarized territorial dispute with portions under the de facto administration of China (Aksai Chin), India (Jammu and Kashmir), and Pakistan (Azad Kashmir and Northern Areas); India does not recognize Pakistan's ceding historic Kashmir lands to China in 1964; about 90,000 ethnic Tibetan exiles reside primarily in India as well as Nepal and Bhutan; China asserts sovereignty over the Spratly Islands together with Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan, Vietnam, and possibly Brunei; the 2002 "Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea" has eased tensions in the Spratlys but is not the legally binding "code of conduct" sought by some parties; in March 2005, the national oil companies of China, the Philippines, and Vietnam signed a joint accord on marine seismic activities in the Spratly Islands; China occupies some of the Paracel Islands also claimed by Vietnam and Taiwan; China and Taiwan have become more vocal in rejecting both Japan's claims to the uninhabited islands of Senkaku-shoto (Diaoyu Tai) and Japan's unilaterally declared exclusive economic zone in the East China Sea, the site of intensive hydrocarbon prospecting; certain islands in the Yalu and Tumen rivers are in an uncontested dispute with North Korea and a section of boundary around Mount Paektu is considered indefinite; China seeks to stem illegal migration of tens of thousands of North Koreans; in 2004, China and Russia divided up the islands in the Amur, Ussuri, and Argun Rivers, ending a century-old border dispute; demarcation of the China-Vietnam boundary proceeds slowly and although the maritime boundary delimitation and fisheries agreements were ratified in June 2004, implementation has been delayed; environmentalists in Burma and Thailand remain concerned about China's construction of hydroelectric dams upstream on the Nujiang/Salween River in Yunnan Province

Refugees and internally displaced persons: refugees (country of origin): 299,287 (Vietnam) estimated 30,000-50,000 (North Korea) (2004)

Illicit drugs: major transshipment point for heroin produced in the Golden Triangle; growing domestic drug abuse problem; source country for chemical precursors and methamphetamine

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Christmas Island

Introduction Christmas Island

Background: Named in 1643 for the day of its discovery, the island was annexed and settlement was begun by the UK in 1888. Phosphate mining began in the 1890s. The UK transferred sovereignty to Australia in 1958. Almost two-thirds of the island has been declared a national park.

Geography Christmas Island

Location: Southeastern Asia, island in the Indian Ocean, south of Indonesia

Geographic coordinates: 10 30 S, 105 40 E

Map references: Southeast Asia

Area: total: 135 sq km land: 135 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: about three-quarters the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 138.9 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm contiguous zone: 12 nm exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical with a wet and dry season; heat and humidity moderated by trade winds; wet season December to April

Terrain: steep cliffs along coast rise abruptly to central plateau

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m highest point: Murray Hill 361 m

Natural resources: phosphate, beaches

Land use: arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% note: mainly tropical rainforest; 63% of the island is a national park (2001)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: the narrow fringing reef surrounding the island can be a maritime hazard

Environment - current issues: NA

Geography - note: located along major sea lanes of Indian Ocean

People Christmas Island

Population: 361 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: NA 15-64 years: NA 65 years and over: NA

Population growth rate: 0% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: NA

Death rate: NA

Net migration rate: NA

Sex ratio: NA

Infant mortality rate: total: NA male: NA female: NA

Life expectancy at birth: total population: NA male: NA female: NA

Total fertility rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Christmas Islander(s) adjective: Christmas Island

Ethnic groups: Chinese 70%, European 20%, Malay 10% note: no indigenous population (2001)

Religions: Buddhist 36%, Muslim 25%, Christian 18%, other 21% (1997)

Languages: English (official), Chinese, Malay

Literacy: NA

People - note: the Australian Bureau of Statistics reports a population of 1,508 as of the 2001 Census

Government Christmas Island

Country name: conventional long form: Territory of Christmas Island conventional short form: Christmas Island

Dependency status: territory of Australia; administered by the Australian Department of Transport and Regional Services

Government type: NA

Capital: The Settlement

Administrative divisions: none (territory of Australia)

Independence: none (territory of Australia)

National holiday: Australia Day, 26 January (1788)

Constitution: Christmas Island Act of 1958-59 (1 October 1958)

Legal system: under the authority of the governor general of Australia and Australian law

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by the Australian governor general head of government: Administrator Evan WILLIAMS (since 1 November 2003) elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; administrator appointed by the governor general of Australia and represents the monarch and Australia

Legislative branch: unicameral Christmas Island Shire Council (9 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms) elections: held every two years with half the members standing for election; last held 3 May 2003 (next to be held in 2005) election results: percent of vote - NA%; seats - independents 9

Judicial branch: Supreme Court; District Court; Magistrate's Court

Political parties and leaders: none

Political pressure groups and leaders: none

International organization participation: none

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (territory of Australia)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (territory of Australia)

Flag description: the flag of Australia is used; note - in early 1986, the Christmas Island Assembly held a design competition for an island flag, however, the winning design has never been formally adopted as the official flag of the territory

Economy Christmas Island

Economy - overview: Phosphate mining had been the only significant economic activity, but in December 1987 the Australian Government closed the mine. In 1991, the mine was reopened. With the support of the government, a $34 million casino opened in 1993. The casino closed in 1998. The Australian Government in 2001 agreed to support the creation of a commercial space-launching site on the island, projected to begin operations in the near future

GDP (purchasing power parity): NA

GDP - real growth rate: NA

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: NA industry: NA services: NA

Labor force: NA

Labor force - by occupation: NA

Budget: revenues: NA expenditures: NA, including capital expenditures of NA

Agriculture - products: NA

Industries: tourism, phosphate extraction (near depletion)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: NA hydro: NA nuclear: NA other: NA

Exports: NA

Exports - commodities: phosphate

Exports - partners: Australia, NZ

Imports: NA

Imports - commodities: consumer goods

Imports - partners: principally Australia

Economic aid - recipient: NA

Currency (code): Australian dollar (AUD)

Currency code: AUD

Exchange rates: Australian dollars per US dollar - 1.3598 (2004), 1.5419 (2003), 1.8406 (2002), 1.9334 (2001), 1.7248 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June

Communications Christmas Island

Telephones - main lines in use: NA

Telephones - mobile cellular: NA

Telephone system: general assessment: service provided by the Australian network domestic: GSM mobile telephone service replaced older analog system in February 2005 international: country code - 61-891; satellite earth stations - one Intelsat earth station provides telephone and telex service (2000)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 1, shortwave 0 (2004)

Radios: 1,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: NA

Televisions: 600 (1997)

Internet country code: .cx

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 2 (2000)

Internet users: NA

Transportation Christmas Island

Highways: total: 240 km paved: 30 km unpaved: 210 km (2000)

Ports and harbors: Flying Fish Cove

Airports: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Christmas Island

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of Australia

Transnational Issues Christmas Island

Disputes - international: none

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Clipperton Island

Introduction Clipperton Island

Background: This isolated island was named for John CLIPPERTON, a pirate who made it his hideout early in the 18th century. Annexed by France in 1855, it was seized by Mexico in 1897. Arbitration eventually awarded the island to France, which took possession in 1935.

Geography Clipperton Island

Location: Middle America, atoll in the North Pacific Ocean, 1,120 km southwest of Mexico

Geographic coordinates: 10 17 N, 109 13 W

Map references: Political Map of the World

Area: total: 6 sq km land: 6 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: about 12 times the size of The Mall in Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 11.1 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical; humid, average temperature 20-32 degrees C, rains May-October

Terrain: coral atoll

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m highest point: Rocher Clipperton 29 m

Natural resources: fish

Land use: arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% (all coral) (2001)

Irrigated land: 0 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: NA

Environment - current issues: NA

Geography - note: reef 12 km in circumference

People Clipperton Island

Population: uninhabited (July 2005 est.)

Government Clipperton Island

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Clipperton Island local long form: none local short form: Ile Clipperton former: sometimes called Ile de la Passion

Dependency status: possession of France; administered by France from French Polynesia by a high commissioner of the Republic

Legal system: the laws of France, where applicable, apply

Flag description: the flag of France is used

Economy Clipperton Island

Economy - overview: Although 115 species of fish have been identified in the territorial waters of Clipperton Island, the only economic activity is tuna fishing.

Transportation Clipperton Island

Ports and harbors: none; offshore anchorage only

Military Clipperton Island

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of France

Transnational Issues Clipperton Island

Disputes - international: none

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Introduction Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Background: There are 27 coral islands in the group. Captain William KEELING discovered the islands in 1609, but they remained uninhabited until the 19th century. Annexed by the UK in 1857, they were transferred to the Australian Government in 1955. The population on the two inhabited islands generally is split between the ethnic Europeans on West Island and the ethnic Malays on Home Island.

Geography Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Location: Southeastern Asia, group of islands in the Indian Ocean, southwest of Indonesia, about halfway from Australia to Sri Lanka

Geographic coordinates: 12 30 S, 96 50 E

Map references: Southeast Asia

Area: total: 14 sq km land: 14 sq km water: 0 sq km note: includes the two main islands of West Island and Home Island

Area - comparative: about 24 times the size of The Mall in Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 26 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical with high humidity, moderated by the southeast trade winds for about nine months of the year

Terrain: flat, low-lying coral atolls

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m highest point: unnamed location 5 m

Natural resources: fish

Land use: arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% (2001)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: cyclone season is October to April

Environment - current issues: fresh water resources are limited to rainwater accumulations in natural underground reservoirs

Geography - note: islands are thickly covered with coconut palms and other vegetation

People Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Population: 628 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: NA 15-64 years: NA 65 years and over: NA

Population growth rate: 0% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: NA

Death rate: NA

Net migration rate: NA

Infant mortality rate: total: NA male: NA female: NA

Life expectancy at birth: total population: NA male: NA female: NA

Total fertility rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Cocos Islander(s) adjective: Cocos Islander

Ethnic groups: Europeans, Cocos Malays

Religions: Sunni Muslim 80%, other 20% (2002 est.)

Languages: Malay (Cocos dialect), English

Government Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Country name: conventional long form: Territory of Cocos (Keeling) Islands conventional short form: Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Dependency status: territory of Australia; administered from Canberra by the Australian Department of Transport and Regional Services

Government type: NA

Capital: West Island

Administrative divisions: none (territory of Australia)

Independence: none (territory of Australia)

National holiday: Australia Day, 26 January (1788)

Constitution: Cocos (Keeling) Islands Act of 1955 (23 November 1953)

Legal system: based upon the laws of Australia and local laws

Suffrage: NA

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by the Australian governor general head of government: Administrator (nonresident) Evan WILLIAMS (since 1 November 2003) cabinet: NA elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; administrator appointed by the governor general of Australia and represents the monarch and Australia

Legislative branch: unicameral Cocos (Keeling) Islands Shire Council (7 seats) elections: held every two years with half the members standing for election; last held NA

Judicial branch: Supreme Court; Magistrate's Court

Political parties and leaders: none

Political pressure groups and leaders: none

International organization participation: none

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (territory of Australia)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (territory of Australia)

Flag description: the flag of Australia is used

Economy Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Economy - overview: Grown throughout the islands, coconuts are the sole cash crop. Small local gardens and fishing contribute to the food supply, but additional food and most other necessities must be imported from Australia. There is a small tourist industry.

GDP (purchasing power parity): NA

GDP - real growth rate: NA%

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: NA% industry: NA% services: NA%

Labor force: NA

Labor force - by occupation: the Cocos Islands Cooperative Society Ltd. employs construction workers, stevedores, and lighterage workers; tourism employs others

Unemployment rate: 60% (2000 est.)

Budget: revenues: NA expenditures: NA

Agriculture - products: vegetables, bananas, pawpaws, coconuts

Industries: copra products and tourism

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: NA hydro: NA nuclear: NA other: NA

Exports: NA

Exports - commodities: copra

Exports - partners: Australia

Imports: NA

Imports - commodities: foodstuffs

Imports - partners: Australia

Economic aid - recipient: NA

Currency (code): Australian dollar (AUD)

Currency code: AUD

Exchange rates: Australian dollars per US dollar - 1.3598 (2004), 1.5419 (2003), 1.8406 (2002), 1.9334 (2001), 1.7248 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June

Communications Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Telephones - main lines in use: 287 (1992)

Telephones - mobile cellular: note - analog cellular service available

Telephone system: general assessment: connected within Australia's telecommunication system domestic: NA international: country code - 61-891; telephone, telex, and facsimile communications with Australia and elsewhere via satellite; 1 satellite earth station of NA type (2002)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 2, shortwave 0 (2004)

Radios: 300 (1992)

Television broadcast stations: NA

Televisions: NA

Internet country code: .cc

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 2 (2000)

Internet users: NA

Transportation Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Highways: total: 15 km paved: NA km unpaved: NA km (2003)

Ports and harbors: Port Refuge

Airports: 1 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of Australia; the territory does have a five-person police force

Transnational Issues Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Disputes - international: none

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Colombia

Introduction Colombia

Background: Colombia was one of the three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Colombia in 1830 (the others are Ecuador and Venezuela). A 40-year insurgent campaign to overthrow the Colombian Government escalated during the 1990s, undergirded in part by funds from the drug trade. Although the violence is deadly and large swaths of the countryside are under guerrilla influence, the movement lacks the military strength or popular support necessary to overthrow the government. An anti-insurgent army of paramilitaries has grown to several thousand strong in recent years, challenging the insurgents for control of territory and the drug trade, and also the government's ability to exert its dominion over rural areas. While Bogota steps up efforts to reassert government control throughout the country, neighboring countries worry about the violence spilling over their borders.

Geography Colombia

Location: Northern South America, bordering the Caribbean Sea, between Panama and Venezuela, and bordering the North Pacific Ocean, between Ecuador and Panama

Geographic coordinates: 4 00 N, 72 00 W

Map references: South America

Area: total: 1,138,910 sq km land: 1,038,700 sq km water: 100,210 sq km note: includes Isla de Malpelo, Roncador Cay, Serrana Bank, and Serranilla Bank

Area - comparative: slightly less than three times the size of Montana

Land boundaries: total: 6,004 km border countries: Brazil 1,643 km, Ecuador 590 km, Panama 225 km, Peru 1,496 km (est.), Venezuela 2,050 km

Coastline: 3,208 km (Caribbean Sea 1,760 km, North Pacific Ocean 1,448 km)

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation

Climate: tropical along coast and eastern plains; cooler in highlands

Terrain: flat coastal lowlands, central highlands, high Andes Mountains, eastern lowland plains

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m highest point: Pico Cristobal Colon 5,775 m note: nearby Pico Simon Bolivar also has the same elevation

Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas, coal, iron ore, nickel, gold, copper, emeralds, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 2.42% permanent crops: 1.67% other: 95.91% (2001)

Irrigated land: 8,500 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: highlands subject to volcanic eruptions; occasional earthquakes; periodic droughts

Environment - current issues: deforestation; soil and water quality damage from overuse of pesticides; air pollution, especially in Bogota, from vehicle emissions

Environment - international agreements: party to: Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea

Geography - note: only South American country with coastlines on both the North Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea

People Colombia

Population: 42,954,279 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 30.7% (male 6,670,950/female 6,516,371) 15-64 years: 64.2% (male 13,424,433/female 14,142,825) 65 years and over: 5.1% (male 968,127/female 1,231,573) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 26.04 years male: 25.14 years female: 26.93 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.49% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 20.82 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 5.59 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.31 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.79 male(s)/female total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 20.97 deaths/1,000 live births male: 24.92 deaths/1,000 live births female: 16.89 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 71.72 years male: 67.88 years female: 75.7 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.56 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.7% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 190,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 3,600 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Colombian(s) adjective: Colombian

Ethnic groups: mestizo 58%, white 20%, mulatto 14%, black 4%, mixed black-Amerindian 3%, Amerindian 1%

Religions: Roman Catholic 90%, other 10%

Languages: Spanish

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 92.5% male: 92.4% female: 92.6% (2003 est.)

Government Colombia

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Colombia conventional short form: Colombia local long form: Republica de Colombia local short form: Colombia

Government type: republic; executive branch dominates government structure

Capital: Bogota

Administrative divisions: 32 departments (departamentos, singular - departamento) and 1 capital district* (distrito capital); Amazonas, Antioquia, Arauca, Atlantico, Distrito Capital de Bogota*, Bolivar, Boyaca, Caldas, Caqueta, Casanare, Cauca, Cesar, Choco, Cordoba, Cundinamarca, Guainia, Guaviare, Huila, La Guajira, Magdalena, Meta, Narino, Norte de Santander, Putumayo, Quindio, Risaralda, San Andres y Providencia, Santander, Sucre, Tolima, Valle del Cauca, Vaupes, Vichada

Independence: 20 July 1810 (from Spain)

National holiday: Independence Day, 20 July (1810)

Constitution: 5 July 1991

Legal system: based on Spanish law; a new criminal code modeled after US procedures was enacted into law in 2004; judicial review of executive and legislative acts; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Alvaro URIBE Velez (since 7 August 2002); Vice President Francisco SANTOS (since 7 August 2002); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government head of government: President Alvaro URIBE Velez (since 7 August 2002); Vice President Francisco SANTOS (since 7 August 2002); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: Cabinet consists of a coalition of the two dominant parties - the PL and PSC - and independents elections: president and vice president elected by popular vote for a four-year term; election last held 26 May 2002 (next to be held May 2006) election results: President Alvaro URIBE Velez received 53% of the vote; Vice President Francisco SANTOS was elected on the same ticket

Legislative branch: bicameral Congress or Congreso consists of the Senate or Senado (102 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms) and the House of Representatives or Camara de Representantes (166 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms) elections: Senate - last held 10 March 2002 (next to be held March 2006); House of Representatives - last held 10 March 2002 (next to be held March 2006) election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PL 28, PSC 13, independents and smaller parties (many aligned with conservatives) 61; House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PL 54, PSC 21, independents and other parties 91

Judicial branch: four roughly coequal, supreme judicial organs; Supreme Court of Justice or Corte Suprema de Justicia (highest court of criminal law; judges are selected by their peers from the nominees of the Superior Judicial Council for eight-year terms); Council of State (highest court of administrative law; judges are selected from the nominees of the Superior Judicial Council for eight-year terms); Constitutional Court (guards integrity and supremacy of the constitution; rules on constitutionality of laws, amendments to the constitution, and international treaties); Superior Judicial Council (administers and disciplines the civilian judiciary; resolves jurisdictional conflicts arising between other courts; members are elected by three sister courts and Congress for eight-year terms)

Political parties and leaders: Colombian Communist Party or PCC [Jaime CAICEDO]; Conservative Party or PSC [Carlos HOLGUIN Sardi]; Democratic Pole or PDI [Samuel MORENO Rojas]; Liberal Party or PL [Juan Fernando CRISTO] note: Colombia has about 60 formally recognized political parties, most of which do not have a presence in either house of Congress

Political pressure groups and leaders: two largest insurgent groups active in Colombia - Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia or FARC and National Liberation Army or ELN; largest anti-insurgent paramilitary group is United Self-Defense Groups of Colombia or AUC

International organization participation: BCIE, CAN, CDB, CSN, FAO, G-3, G-24, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, LAES, LAIA, Mercosur (associate), MIGA, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, RG, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Luis Alberto MORENO Mejia chancery: 2118 Leroy Place NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 387-8338 FAX: [1] (202) 232-8643 consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Beverly Hills, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Miami, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco, San Juan (Puerto Rico), and Washington, DC

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador William B. WOOD embassy: Calle 22D-BIS, numbers 47-51, Apartado Aereo 3831 mailing address: Carrera 45 #22D-45, Bogota, D.C., APO AA 34038 telephone: [57] (1) 315-0811 FAX: [57] (1) 315-2197

Flag description: three horizontal bands of yellow (top, double-width), blue, and red; similar to the flag of Ecuador, which is longer and bears the Ecuadorian coat of arms superimposed in the center

Economy Colombia

Economy - overview: Colombia's economy has been on a recovery trend during the past two years despite a serious armed conflict. The economy continues to improve thanks to austere government budgets, focused efforts to reduce public debt levels, and an export-oriented growth focus. Ongoing economic problems facing President URIBE range from reforming the pension system to reducing high unemployment. New exploration is needed to offset declining oil production. On the positive side, several international financial institutions have praised the economic reforms introduced by URIBE, which include measures designed to reduce the public-sector deficit below 2.5% of GDP. The government's economic policy and democratic security strategy have engendered a growing sense of confidence in the economy, particularly within the business sector. Coffee prices have recovered from previous lows as the Colombian coffee industry pursues greater market shares in developed countries such as the United States.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $281.1 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 3.6% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $6,600 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 13.4% industry: 32.1% services: 54.5% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 20.7 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 30%, industry 24%, services 46% (1990)

Unemployment rate: 13.6% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 55% (2001)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 1% highest 10%: 44% (1999)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 57.1 (1996)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 5.9% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 15.8% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $15.33 billion expenditures: $21.03 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: 51.8% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: coffee, cut flowers, bananas, rice, tobacco, corn, sugarcane, cocoa beans, oilseed, vegetables; forest products; shrimp

Industries: textiles, food processing, oil, clothing and footwear, beverages, chemicals, cement; gold, coal, emeralds

Industrial production growth rate: 4% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 44.87 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 26% hydro: 72.7% nuclear: 0% other: 1.3% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 41.14 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 618 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 23 million kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 531,100 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 252,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 1.7 billion bbl (2004 est.)

Natural gas - production: 5.7 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 5.7 billion cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 132 billion cu m (2004)

Current account balance: $-1.706 billion (2004 est.)

Exports: $15.5 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: petroleum, coffee, coal, apparel, bananas, cut flowers

Exports - partners: US 42.1%, Venezuela 9.7%, Ecuador 6% (2004)

Imports: $15.34 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: industrial equipment, transportation equipment, consumer goods, chemicals, paper products, fuels, electricity

Imports - partners: US 29.1%, Venezuela 6.5%, China 6.4%, Mexico 6.2%, Brazil 5.8% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $11.94 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $38.7 billion (2004 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: NA

Currency (code): Colombian peso (COP)

Currency code: COP

Exchange rates: Colombian pesos per US dollar - 2,628.61 (2004), 2,877.65 (2003), 2,504.24 (2002), 2,299.63 (2001), 2,087.9 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Colombia

Telephones - main lines in use: 8,768,100 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 6,186,200 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: modern system in many respects domestic: nationwide microwave radio relay system; domestic satellite system with 41 earth stations; fiber-optic network linking 50 cities international: country code - 57; satellite earth stations - 6 Intelsat, 1 Inmarsat; 3 fully digitalized international switching centers; 8 submarine cables

Radio broadcast stations: AM 454, FM 34, shortwave 27 (1999)

Radios: 21 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 60 (includes seven low-power stations) (1997)

Televisions: 4.59 million (1997)

Internet country code: .co

Internet hosts: 115,158 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 18 (2000)

Internet users: 2,732,200 (2003)

Transportation Colombia

Railways: total: 3,304 km standard gauge: 150 km 1.435-m gauge narrow gauge: 3,154 km 0.914-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 112,998 km paved: 26,000 km unpaved: 84,000 km (2000)

Waterways: 9,187 km (2004)

Pipelines: gas 4,360 km; oil 6,134 km; refined products 3,140 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Barranquilla, Buenaventura, Cartagena, Muelles El Bosque, Puerto Bolivar, Santa Marta, Turbo

Merchant marine: total: 15 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 35,427 GRT/46,301 DWT by type: bulk carrier 1, cargo 11, liquefied gas 1, petroleum tanker 2 registered in other countries: 7 (2005)

Airports: 980 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 101 over 3,047 m: 2 2,438 to 3,047 m: 9 1,524 to 2,437 m: 39 914 to 1,523 m: 39 under 914 m: 12 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 879 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 34 914 to 1,523 m: 272 under 914 m: 572 (2004 est.)

Heliports: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Colombia

Military branches: Army (Ejercito Nacional), Navy (Armada Nacional, includes Naval Aviation, Marines, and Coast Guard), Air Force (Fuerza Aerea Colombiana)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service; conscript service obligation - 24 months (2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 10,212,456 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 6,986,228 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 389,735 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $3.3 billion (FY01)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 3.4% (FY01)

Transnational Issues Colombia

Disputes - international: Nicaragua filed a claim against Honduras in 1999 and against Colombia in 2001 at the ICJ over disputed maritime boundary involving 50,000 sq km in the Caribbean Sea, including the Archipelago de San Andres y Providencia and Quita Sueno Bank; dispute with Venezuela over maritime boundary and Los Monjes Islands near the Gulf of Venezuela; Colombian-organized illegal narcotics, guerrilla, and paramilitary activities penetrate all of its neighbors' borders and have created a serious refugee crisis with over 300,000 persons having fled the country, mostly into neighboring states

Refugees and internally displaced persons: IDPs: 2,730,000 - 3,100,000 (conflict between government and FARC; drug wars) (2004)

Illicit drugs: illicit producer of coca, opium poppy, and cannabis; world's leading coca cultivator (cultivation of coca in 2002 was 144,450 hectares, a 15% decline since 2001); potential production of opium between 2001 and 2002 declined by 25% to 91 metric tons; potential production of heroin declined to 11.3 metric tons; the world's largest processor of coca derivatives into cocaine; supplier of about 90% of the cocaine to the US market and the great majority of cocaine to other international drug markets; important supplier of heroin to the US market; active aerial eradication program; a significant portion of non-US narcotics proceeds are either laundered or invested in Colombia through the black market peso exchange

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Comoros

Introduction Comoros

Background: Unstable Comoros has endured 19 coups or attempted coups since gaining independence from France in 1975. In 1997, the islands of Anjouan and Moheli declared their independence from Comoros. In 1999, military chief Col. AZALI seized power. He pledged to resolve the secessionist crisis through a confederal arrangement named the 2000 Fomboni Accord. In December 2001, voters approved a new constitution and presidential elections took place in the spring of 2002. Each island in the archipelago elected its own president and a new union president took office in May of 2002.

Geography Comoros

Location: Southern Africa, group of islands at the northern mouth of the Mozambique Channel, about two-thirds of the way between northern Madagascar and northern Mozambique

Geographic coordinates: 12 10 S, 44 15 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 2,170 sq km land: 2,170 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly more than 12 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 340 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical marine; rainy season (November to May)

Terrain: volcanic islands, interiors vary from steep mountains to low hills

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m highest point: Le Kartala 2,360 m

Natural resources: NEGL

Land use: arable land: 35.87% permanent crops: 23.32% other: 40.81% (2001)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: cyclones possible during rainy season (December to April); Le Kartala on Grand Comore is an active volcano

Environment - current issues: soil degradation and erosion results from crop cultivation on slopes without proper terracing; deforestation

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: important location at northern end of Mozambique Channel

People Comoros

Population: 671,247 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 42.8% (male 144,075/female 143,175) 15-64 years: 54.2% (male 179,541/female 184,488) 65 years and over: 3% (male 9,407/female 10,561) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 18.61 years male: 18.35 years female: 18.87 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.91% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 37.52 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 8.4 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.97 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.89 male(s)/female total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 74.93 deaths/1,000 live births male: 83.48 deaths/1,000 live births female: 66.13 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 61.96 years male: 59.65 years female: 64.33 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 5.09 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.12% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Comoran(s) adjective: Comoran

Ethnic groups: Antalote, Cafre, Makoa, Oimatsaha, Sakalava

Religions: Sunni Muslim 98%, Roman Catholic 2%

Languages: Arabic (official), French (official), Shikomoro (a blend of Swahili and Arabic)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 56.5% male: 63.6% female: 49.3% (2003 est.)

Government Comoros

Country name: conventional long form: Union of the Comoros conventional short form: Comoros local long form: Union des Comores local short form: Comores

Government type: independent republic

Capital: Moroni

Administrative divisions: 3 islands; Grande Comore (Njazidja), Anjouan (Nzwani), and Moheli (Mwali); note - there are also four municipalities named Domoni, Fomboni, Moroni, and Moutsamoudou

Independence: 6 July 1975 (from France)

National holiday: Independence Day, 6 July (1975)

Constitution: 23 December 2001

Legal system: French and Sharia (Islamic) law in a new consolidated code

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President AZALI Assoumani (since 26 May 2002); note - following a 1999 coup AZALI was appointed president; in January 2002 he resigned his position to run in the 14 April 2002 presidential elections; Prime Minister Hamada Madi BOLERO was appointed interim president until replaced again by AZALI in May 2002 when BOLERO was appointed Minister of External Defense and Territorial Security; the president is both the chief of state and the head of government head of government: President AZALI Assoumani (since 26 May 2002); note - following a 1999 coup AZALI was appointed president; in January 2002 he resigned his position to run in the 14 April 2002 presidential elections; Prime Minister Hamada Madi BOLERO was appointed interim president until replaced again by AZALI in May 2002 when BOLERO was appointed Minister of External Defense and Territorial Security; the president is both the chief of state and the head of government cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president elections: as defined by the 2001 constitution, the presidency rotates every four years among the elected presidents from the three main islands in the Union; election last held 14 April 2002 (next to be held April 2007); prime minister appointed by the president; note - AZALI has not appointed a Prime Minister since he was sworn into office in May 2002 election results: President AZALI Assoumani elected president with 75% of the vote

Legislative branch: unicameral Assembly of the Union (33 seats; 15 deputies are selected by the individual islands' local assemblies and the 18 by universal suffrage; deputies serve for five years); elections: last held 18 and 25 April 2004 (next to be held NA 2009) election results: NA

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Cour Supremes (two members appointed by the president, two members elected by the Federal Assembly, one elected by the Council of each island, and others are former presidents of the republic)

Political parties and leaders: Forces pour l'Action Republicaine or FAR [Col. Abdourazak ABDULHAMID]; Forum pour la Redressement National or FRN (alliance of 12 parties); Front Democratique or FD [Moustoifa Said CHEIKH]; Front National pour la Justice or FNJ (Islamic party in opposition) [Ahmed RACHID]; Movement des Citoyens pour la Republique or MCR [Mahamoud MRADABI]; Mouvement Populaire Anjouanais or MPA (Anjouan separatist movement) [leader NA]; Mouvement pour la Democratie et le Progress or MDP-NGDC [Abbas DJOUSSOUF]; Movement pour le Socialisme et la Democratie or MSD (splinter group of FD) [Abdou SOEFOU]; Parti Comorien pour la Democratie et le Progress or PCDP [Ali MROUDJAE]; Rassemblement National pour le Development or RND (party of the government) [Omar TAMOU, Abdoulhamid AFFRAITANE]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AMF, AU, FAO, FZ, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt (signatory), ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS (observer), ILO, IMF, IMO, InOC, Interpol, IOC, ITU, LAS, NAM, OIC, OPCW (signatory), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WMO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Mahmoud M. ABOUD (ambassador to the US and Canada and permanent representative to the UN) chancery: (temporary) care of the Permanent Mission of the Union of the Comoros to the United Nations, 420 East 50th Street, New York, NY 10022 telephone: [1] (212) 972-8010 and 223-2711 FAX: [1] (212) 983-4712 and 715-0699

Diplomatic representation from the US: the US does not have an embassy in Comoros; the ambassador to Mauritius is accredited to Comoros

Flag description: four equal horizontal bands of yellow (top), white, red, and blue with a green isosceles triangle based on the hoist; centered within the triangle is a white crescent with the convex side facing the hoist and four white, five-pointed stars placed vertically in a line between the points of the crescent; the horizontal bands and the four stars represent the four main islands of the archipelago - Mwali, Njazidja, Nzwani, and Mayotte (a territorial collectivity of France, but claimed by Comoros); the crescent, stars, and color green are traditional symbols of Islam

Economy Comoros

Economy - overview: One of the world's poorest countries, Comoros is made up of three islands that have inadequate transportation links, a young and rapidly increasing population, and few natural resources. The low educational level of the labor force contributes to a subsistence level of economic activity, high unemployment, and a heavy dependence on foreign grants and technical assistance. Agriculture, including fishing, hunting, and forestry, contributes 40% to GDP, employs 80% of the labor force, and provides most of the exports. The country is not self-sufficient in food production; rice, the main staple, accounts for the bulk of imports. The government - which is hampered by internal political disputes - is struggling to upgrade education and technical training, privatize commercial and industrial enterprises, improve health services, diversify exports, promote tourism, and reduce the high population growth rate. Increased foreign support is essential if the goal of 4% annual GDP growth is to be met. Remittances from 150,000 Comorans abroad help supplement GDP.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $441 million (2002 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 2% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $700 (2002 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 40% industry: 4% services: 56% (2001 est.)

Labor force: 144,500 (1996 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 80%

Unemployment rate: 20% (1996 est.)

Population below poverty line: 60% (2002 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3.5% (2001 est.)

Budget: revenues: $27.6 million expenditures: NA, including capital expenditures of NA (2001 est.)

Agriculture - products: vanilla, cloves, perfume essences, copra, coconuts, bananas, cassava (tapioca)

Industries: tourism, perfume distillation

Industrial production growth rate: -2% (1999 est.)

Electricity - production: 23.84 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 90.6% hydro: 9.4% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 22.17 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 700 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Exports: $28 million f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Exports - commodities: vanilla, ylang-ylang, cloves, perfume oil, copra

Exports - partners: US 43.8%, France 18.6%, Singapore 16.5%, Turkey 4.8%, Germany 4.5% (2004)

Imports: $88 million f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities: rice and other foodstuffs, consumer goods; petroleum products, cement, transport equipment

Imports - partners: France 23.5%, South Africa 11.1%, Kenya 7.5%, UAE 7.2%, Italy 4.9%, Pakistan 4.7%, Mauritius 4.2%, Singapore 4.1% (2004)

Debt - external: $232 million (2000 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $10 million (2001 est.)

Currency (code): Comoran franc (KMF)

Currency code: KMF

Exchange rates: Comoran francs (KMF) per US dollar - 396.21 (2004), 435.9 (2003), 522.74 (2002), 549.78 (2001), 533.98 (2000) note: the Comoran franc is pegged to the euro at a rate of 491.9677 Comoran francs per euro

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Comoros

Telephones - main lines in use: 13,200 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 2,000 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: sparse system of microwave radio relay and HF radiotelephone communication stations domestic: HF radiotelephone communications and microwave radio relay international: country code - 269; HF radiotelephone communications to Madagascar and Reunion

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 4, shortwave 1 (2001)

Radios: 90,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: NA

Televisions: 1,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .km

Internet hosts: 11 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)

Internet users: 5,000 (2003)

Transportation Comoros

Highways: total: 880 km paved: 673 km unpaved: 207 km (1999 est)

Ports and harbors: Mayotte, Moutsamoudou

Merchant marine: total: 79 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 452,801 GRT/681,343 DWT by type: bulk carrier 9, cargo 55, chemical tanker 1, container 1, livestock carrier 1, passenger/cargo 1, petroleum tanker 5, refrigerated cargo 5, roll on/roll off 1 foreign-owned: 35 (Bulgaria 1, Germany 1, Greece 7, India 1, Jordan 1, Kenya 1, Lebanon 3, Nigeria 1, Norway 1, Pakistan 1, Philippines 1, Russia 2, Syria 3, Turkey 6, Ukraine 4, United Kingdom 1) (2005)

Airports: 4 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 4 2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 3 (2004 est.)

Military Comoros

Military branches: Comoran Security Force

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 138,940 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 98,792 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $11.6 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 3% (2004)

Transnational Issues Comoros

Disputes - international: claims French-administered Mayotte

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Introduction Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Background: Established as a Belgian colony in 1908, the Republic of the Congo gained its independence in 1960, but its early years were marred by political and social instability. Col. Joseph MOBUTU seized power and declared himself president in a November 1965 coup. He subsequently changed his name - to MOBUTU Sese Seko - as well as that of the country - to Zaire. MOBUTU retained his position for 32 years through several subsequent sham elections as well as through the use of brutal force. Ethnic strife and civil war, touched off by a massive inflow of refugees in 1994 from fighting in Rwanda and Burundi, led in May 1997 to the toppling of the MOBUTU regime by a rebellion led by Laurent KABILA. He renamed the country the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DROC), but in August 1998 his regime was itself challenged by an insurrection backed by Rwanda and Uganda. Troops from Zimbabwe, Angola, Namibia, Chad, and Sudan intervened to support the Kinshasa regime. A cease-fire was signed in July 1999 by the DROC, Zimbabwe, Angola, Uganda, Namibia, Rwanda, and Congolese armed rebel groups, but sporadic fighting continued. Laurent KABILA was assassinated in January 2001 and his son Joseph KABILA was named head of state. In October 2002, the new president was successful in negotiating the withdrawal of Rwandan forces occupying eastern Congo; two months later, the Pretoria Accord was signed by all remaining warring parties to end the fighting and establish a government of national unity. A transitional government was set up in July 2003; Joseph KABILA remains as president and is joined by four vice presidents representing the former government, former rebel groups, and the political opposition.

Geography Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Location: Central Africa, northeast of Angola

Geographic coordinates: 0 00 N, 25 00 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 2,345,410 sq km land: 2,267,600 sq km water: 77,810 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly less than one-fourth the size of the US

Land boundaries: total: 10,730 km border countries: Angola 2,511 km (of which 225 km is the boundary of Angola's discontiguous Cabinda Province), Burundi 233 km, Central African Republic 1,577 km, Republic of the Congo 2,410 km, Rwanda 217 km, Sudan 628 km, Tanzania 459 km, Uganda 765 km, Zambia 1,930 km

Coastline: 37 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: boundaries with neighbors

Climate: tropical; hot and humid in equatorial river basin; cooler and drier in southern highlands; cooler and wetter in eastern highlands; north of Equator - wet season April to October, dry season December to February; south of Equator - wet season November to March, dry season April to October

Terrain: vast central basin is a low-lying plateau; mountains in east

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Pic Marguerite on Mont Ngaliema (Mount Stanley) 5,110 m

Natural resources: cobalt, copper, niobium, tantalum, petroleum, industrial and gem diamonds, gold, silver, zinc, manganese, tin, uranium, coal, hydropower, timber

Land use: arable land: 2.96% permanent crops: 0.52% other: 96.52% (2001)

Irrigated land: 110 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: periodic droughts in south; Congo River floods (seasonal); in the east, in the Great Rift Valley, there are active volcanoes

Environment - current issues: poaching threatens wildlife populations; water pollution; deforestation; refugees responsible for significant deforestation, soil erosion, and wildlife poaching; mining of minerals (coltan - a mineral used in creating capacitors, diamonds, and gold) causing environmental damage

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Environmental Modification

Geography - note: straddles equator; has very narrow strip of land that controls the lower Congo River and is only outlet to South Atlantic Ocean; dense tropical rain forest in central river basin and eastern highlands

People Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Population: 60,085,804 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 48.1% (male 14,513,779/female 14,396,952) 15-64 years: 49.4% (male 14,579,101/female 15,121,297) 65 years and over: 2.5% (male 597,776/female 876,099) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 15.8 years male: 15.4 years female: 16.2 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.98% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 44.38 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 14.43 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.17 migrant(s)/1,000 population note: fighting between the Congolese Government and Uganda- and Rwanda-backed Congolese rebels spawned a regional war in DROC in August 1998, which left 1.8 million Congolese internally displaced and caused 300,000 Congolese refugees to flee to surrounding countries (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.01 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.68 male(s)/female total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 92.87 deaths/1,000 live births male: 101.25 deaths/1,000 live births female: 84.23 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 51.1 years male: 49.68 years female: 52.56 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 6.54 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 4.2% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 1.1 million (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 100,000 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: very high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne diseases: malaria, plague, and African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness) are high risks in some locations water contact disease: schistosomiasis (2004)

Nationality: noun: Congolese (singular and plural) adjective: Congolese or Congo

Ethnic groups: over 200 African ethnic groups of which the majority are Bantu; the four largest tribes - Mongo, Luba, Kongo (all Bantu), and the Mangbetu-Azande (Hamitic) make up about 45% of the population

Religions: Roman Catholic 50%, Protestant 20%, Kimbanguist 10%, Muslim 10%, other syncretic sects and indigenous beliefs 10%

Languages: French (official), Lingala (a lingua franca trade language), Kingwana (a dialect of Kiswahili or Swahili), Kikongo, Tshiluba

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write French, Lingala, Kingwana, or Tshiluba total population: 65.5% male: 76.2% female: 55.1% (2003 est.)

Government Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Country name: conventional long form: Democratic Republic of the Congo conventional short form: none local long form: Republique Democratique du Congo local short form: none former: Congo Free State, Belgian Congo, Congo/Leopoldville, Congo/Kinshasa, Zaire abbreviation: DROC

Government type: dictatorship; presumably undergoing a transition to representative government

Capital: Kinshasa

Administrative divisions: 10 provinces (provinces, singular - province) and 1 city* (ville); Bandundu, Bas-Congo, Equateur, Kasai-Occidental, Kasai-Oriental, Katanga, Kinshasa*, Maniema, Nord-Kivu, Orientale, Sud-Kivu

Independence: 30 June 1960 (from Belgium)

National holiday: Independence Day, 30 June (1960)

Constitution: new constitution adopted 17 July 2003

Legal system: based on Belgian civil law system and tribal law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branch: chief of state: President Joseph KABILA (since 26 January 2001); note - following the assassination of his father, Laurent Desire KABILA, on 16 January 2001, Joseph KABILA succeeded to the presidency; the president is both the chief of state and head of government head of government: President Joseph KABILA (since 26 January 2001); note - following the assassination of his father, Laurent Desire KABILA, on 16 January 2001, Joseph KABILA succeeded to the presidency; the president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: National Executive Council, appointed by the president elections: prior to the overthrow of MOBUTU Sese Seko, the president was elected by popular vote for a seven-year term; election last held 29 July 1984 (next was scheduled to be held in May 1997); formerly, there was also a prime minister who was elected by the High Council of the Republic; note - a Transitional Government is drafting a new constitution with free elections scheduled to be held in NA 2005 election results: MOBUTU Sese Seko Kuku Ngbendu wa Za Banga reelected president in 1984 without opposition note: Joseph KABILA succeeded his father, Laurent Desire KABILA, following the latter's assassination in January 2001, negotiations with rebel leaders led to the establishment of a transitional government in July 2003 with free elections scheduled to be held in NA 2005

Legislative branch: a 300-member Transitional Constituent Assembly established in August 2000 elections: NA; members of the Transitional Constituent Assembly were appointed by former President Laurent Desire KABILA

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Cour Supreme

Political parties and leaders: Democratic Social Christian Party or PDSC [Andre BO-BOLIKO]; Forces for Renovation for Union and Solidarity or FONUS [Joseph OLENGHANKOY]; National Congolese Lumumbist Movement or MNC [Francois LUMUMBA]; Popular Movement of the Revolution or MPR (three factions: MPR-Fait Prive [Catherine NZUZI wa Mbombo]; MPR/Vunduawe [Felix VUNDUAWE]; MPR/Mananga [MANANGA Dintoka Mpholo]); Unified Lumumbast Party or PALU [Antoine GIZENGA]; Union for Democracy and Social Progress or UDPS [Etienne TSHISEKEDI wa Mulumba]; Union of Federalists and Independent Republicans or UFERI (two factions: UFERI [Lokambo OMOKOKO]; UFERI/OR [Adolph Kishwe MAYA])

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, CEPGL, FAO, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO (correspondent), ITU, MIGA, NAM, OPCW (signatory), PCA, SADC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Faida MITIFU chancery: 1800 New Hampshire Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20009: note - Consular Office at 1726 M Street, NW, Wasington, DC, 20036 telephone: [1] (202) 234-7690, 7691 FAX: [1] (202) 234-2609

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Aubrey HOOKS embassy: 310 Avenue des Aviateurs, Kinshasa mailing address: Unit 31550, APO AE 09828 telephone: [243] (88) 43608 FAX: [243] (88) 43467

Flag description: light blue with a large yellow five-pointed star in the center and a columnar arrangement of six small yellow five-pointed stars along the hoist side

Economy Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Economy - overview: The economy of the Democratic Republic of the Congo - a nation endowed with vast potential wealth - has declined drastically since the mid-1980s. The war, which began in August 1998, dramatically reduced national output and government revenue, increased external debt, and resulted in the deaths of perhaps 3.5 million people from war, famine, and disease. Foreign businesses curtailed operations due to uncertainty about the outcome of the conflict, lack of infrastructure, and the difficult operating environment. Conditions improved in late 2002 with the withdrawal of a large portion of the invading foreign troops. Several IMF and World Bank missions have met with the government to help it develop a coherent economic plan, and President KABILA has begun implementing reforms. Much economic activity lies outside the GDP data. Economic stability, aided by international donors, improved in 2003-04, although an uncertain legal framework, corruption, and a lack of openness in government policy continues to hamper growth. In 2005, renewed activity in the mining sector, the source of most exports, could boost Kinshasa's fiscal position and GDP growth.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $42.74 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 7.5% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $700 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 55% industry: 11% services: 34% (2000 est.)

Labor force: 14.51 million (1993 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: NA

Unemployment rate: NA (2003 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 14% (2003 est.)

Budget: revenues: $269 million expenditures: $244 million, including capital expenditures of $24 million (1996 est.)

Agriculture - products: coffee, sugar, palm oil, rubber, tea, quinine, cassava (tapioca), palm oil, bananas, root crops, corn, fruits; wood products

Industries: mining (diamonds, copper, zinc), mineral processing, consumer products (including textiles, footwear, cigarettes, processed foods and beverages), cement, commercial ship repair

Industrial production growth rate: NA

Electricity - production: 6.086 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 1.8% hydro: 98.2% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 4.168 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 1.5 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 8 million kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 24,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 14,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 1.538 billion bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 104.8 billion cu m (1 January 2002)

Exports: $1.417 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Exports - commodities: diamonds, copper, crude oil, coffee, cobalt

Exports - partners: Belgium 47.8%, Finland 21%, US 10.9%, China 7.6% (2004)

Imports: $933 million f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities: foodstuffs, mining and other machinery, transport equipment, fuels

Imports - partners: South Africa 18.5%, Belgium 15.5%, France 10.8%, Kenya 6.3%, US 6%, Germany 5.8% (2004)

Debt - external: $11.6 billion (2000 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $195.3 million (1995)

Currency (code): Congolese franc (CDF)

Currency code: CDF

Exchange rates: Congolese francs per US dollar - 401.04 (2004), 405.34 (2003), 346.49 (2002), 206.62 (2001), 21.82 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Telephones - main lines in use: 10,000 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 1 million (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: poor domestic: barely adequate wire and microwave radio relay service in and between urban areas; domestic satellite system with 14 earth stations international: country code - 243; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 3, FM 11, shortwave 2 (2001)

Radios: 18.03 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 4 (2001)

Televisions: 6.478 million (1997)

Internet country code: .cd

Internet hosts: 153 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2001)

Internet users: 50,000 (2002)

Transportation Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Railways: total: 5,138 km narrow gauge: 3,987 km 1.067-m gauge (858 km electrified); 125 km 1.000-m gauge; 1,026 km 0.600-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 157,000 km (including 30 km of expressways) paved: NA km unpaved: NA km (1999 est.)

Waterways: 15,000 km (navigation on the Congo curtailed by fighting) (2004)

Pipelines: gas 54 km; oil 71 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Banana, Boma, Bukavu, Bumba, Goma, Kalemie, Kindu, Kinshasa, Kisangani, Matadi, Mbandaka

Merchant marine: registered in other countries: 1

Airports: 230 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 24 over 3,047 m: 4 2,438 to 3,047 m: 2 1,524 to 2,437 m: 16 914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 206 1,524 to 2,437 m: 17 914 to 1,523 m: 92 under 914 m: 97 (2004 est.)

Military Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Military branches: Army, Navy, Air Force

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 11,052,696 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 5,851,292 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $93.5 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.5% (2004)

Transnational Issues Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Disputes - international: heads of the Great Lakes states and UN pledge to end conflict but unchecked tribal, rebel, and militia fighting continues unabated in the northeastern region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, drawing in the neighboring states of Burundi, Rwanda and Uganda; the UN Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC) has maintained over 14,000 peacekeepers in the region since 1999; thousands of Ituri refugees from the Congo continue to flee the fighting primarily into Uganda; 90,000 Angolan refugees were repatriated by 2004 with the remainder in the Democratic Republic of the Congo expected to return in 2005; in 2005, DROC and Rwanda established a border verification mechanism to address accusations of Rwandan military supporting Congolese rebels and the DROC providing rebel Rwandan "Interhamwe" forces the means and bases to attack Rwandan forces; the location of the boundary in the broad Congo River with the Republic of the Congo is indefinite except in the Pool Malebo/Stanley Pool area

Refugees and internally displaced persons: refugees (country of origin): 45,060 (Sudan) 100,000 (Angola) 19,552 (Burundi) 6,626 (Republic of Congo) 19,743 (Rwanda) 18,953 (Uganda) IDPs: 2.33 million (fighting between government forces and rebels since mid-1990s; most IDPs are in eastern provinces) (2004)

Illicit drugs: illicit producer of cannabis, mostly for domestic consumption; while rampant corruption and inadequate supervision leaves the banking system vulnerable to money laundering, the lack of a well-developed financial system limits the country's utility as a money-laundering center

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Congo, Republic of the

Introduction Congo, Republic of the

Background: Upon independence in 1960, the former French region of Middle Congo became the Republic of the Congo. A quarter century of experimentation with Marxism was abandoned in 1990 and a democratically elected government installed in 1992. A brief civil war in 1997 restored former Marxist President SASSOU-NGUESSO, but ushered in a period of ethnic unrest. Southern-based rebel groups agreed to a final peace accord in March 2003, but the calm is tenuous and refugees continue to present a humanitarian crisis. The Republic of Congo is one of Africa's largest petroleum producers with significant potential for offshore development.

Geography Congo, Republic of the

Location: Western Africa, bordering the South Atlantic Ocean, between Angola and Gabon

Geographic coordinates: 1 00 S, 15 00 E

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 342,000 sq km land: 341,500 sq km water: 500 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Montana

Land boundaries: total: 5,504 km border countries: Angola 201 km, Cameroon 523 km, Central African Republic 467 km, Democratic Republic of the Congo 2,410 km, Gabon 1,903 km

Coastline: 169 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 200 nm

Climate: tropical; rainy season (March to June); dry season (June to October); constantly high temperatures and humidity; particularly enervating climate astride the Equator

Terrain: coastal plain, southern basin, central plateau, northern basin

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Mount Berongou 903 m

Natural resources: petroleum, timber, potash, lead, zinc, uranium, copper, phosphates, gold, magnesium, natural gas, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 0.51% permanent crops: 0.13% other: 99.36% (2001)

Irrigated land: 10 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: seasonal flooding

Environment - current issues: air pollution from vehicle emissions; water pollution from the dumping of raw sewage; tap water is not potable; deforestation

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea

Geography - note: about 70% of the population lives in Brazzaville, Pointe-Noire, or along the railroad between them

People Congo, Republic of the

Population: 3,039,126 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 37.3% (male 571,011/female 563,414) 15-64 years: 59% (male 886,297/female 907,348) 65 years and over: 3.7% (male 45,799/female 65,257) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 20.7 years male: 20.2 years female: 21.1 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.31% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 27.88 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 14.82 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.01 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.7 male(s)/female total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 92.41 deaths/1,000 live births male: 98.48 deaths/1,000 live births female: 86.16 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 52.26 years male: 51.17 years female: 53.39 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3.54 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 4.9% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 90,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 9,700 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases: degree of risk: very high food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever vectorborne disease: malaria (2004)

Nationality: noun: Congolese (singular and plural) adjective: Congolese or Congo

Ethnic groups: Kongo 48%, Sangha 20%, M'Bochi 12%, Teke 17%, Europeans and other 3% note: Europeans estimated at 8,500, mostly French, before the 1997 civil war; may be half that in 1998, following the widespread destruction of foreign businesses in 1997

Religions: Christian 50%, animist 48%, Muslim 2%

Languages: French (official), Lingala and Monokutuba (lingua franca trade languages), many local languages and dialects (of which Kikongo is the most widespread)

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 83.8% male: 89.6% female: 78.4% (2003 est.)

Government Congo, Republic of the

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of the Congo conventional short form: Congo (Brazzaville) local long form: Republique du Congo local short form: none former: Middle Congo, Congo/Brazzaville, Congo

Government type: republic

Capital: Brazzaville

Administrative divisions: 10 regions (regions, singular - region) and 1 commune*; Bouenza, Brazzaville*, Cuvette, Cuvette-Ouest, Kouilou, Lekoumou, Likouala, Niari, Plateaux, Pool, Sangha

Independence: 15 August 1960 (from France)

National holiday: Independence Day, 15 August (1960)

Constitution: approved by referendum 20 January 2002

Legal system: based on French civil law system and customary law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch: chief of state: President Denis SASSOU-NGUESSO (since 25 October 1997, following the civil war in which he toppled elected president Pascal LISSOUBA); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government head of government: President Denis SASSOU-NGUESSO (since 25 October 1997, following the civil war in which he toppled elected president Pascal LISSOUBA); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president elections: president elected by popular vote for a seven-year term (eligible for a second seven-year term); election last held 10 March 2002 (next to be held NA 2009) election results: Denis SASSOU-NGUESSO reelected president; percent of vote - Denis SASSOU-NGUESSO 89.4%, Joseph Kignoumbi Kia MBOUNGOU 2.7%

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (66 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) and the National Assembly (137 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) elections: Senate - last held 11 July 2002 (next to be held July 2007); National Assembly - last held 27 May and 26 June 2002 (next to be held by NA May 2007) election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - FDP 56, other 10; National Assembly - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - FDP 83, UDR 6, UPADS 3, other 45

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Cour Supreme

Political parties and leaders: the most important of the many parties are the Democratic and Patriotic Forces or FDP (an alliance of Convention for Alternative Democracy, Congolese Labor Party or PCT, Liberal Republican Party, National Union for Democracy and Progress, Patriotic Union for the National Reconstruction, and Union for the National Renewal) [Denis SASSOU-NGUESSO, president]; Congolese Movement for Democracy and Integral Development or MCDDI [Michel MAMPOUYA]; Pan-African Union for Social Development or UPADS [Martin MBERI]; Rally for Democracy and Social Progress or RDPS [Jean-Pierre Thystere TCHICAYA, president]; Rally for Democracy and the Republic or RDR [Raymond Damasge NGOLLO]; Union for Democracy and Republic or UDR [leader NA]; Union of Democratic Forces or UFD [Sebastian EBAO]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Congolese Trade Union Congress or CSC; General Union of Congolese Pupils and Students or UGEEC; Revolutionary Union of Congolese Women or URFC; Union of Congolese Socialist Youth or UJSC

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, BDEAC, CEMAC, FAO, FZ, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ITU, MIGA, NAM, OPCW (signatory), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNOCI, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Serge MOMBOULI chancery: 4891 Colorado Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20011 telephone: [1] (202) 726-5500 FAX: [1] (202) 726-1860

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Roger A. MEECE embassy: NA mailing address: NA telephone: [243] (88) 43608 note: the embassy is temporarily collocated with the US Embassy in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (US Embassy Kinshasa, 310 Avenue des Aviateurs, Kinshasa)

Flag description: divided diagonally from the lower hoist side by a yellow band; the upper triangle (hoist side) is green and the lower triangle is red; uses the popular pan-African colors of Ethiopia

Economy Congo, Republic of the

Economy - overview: The economy is a mixture of village agriculture and handicrafts, an industrial sector based largely on oil, support services, and a government characterized by budget problems and overstaffing. Oil has supplanted forestry as the mainstay of the economy, providing a major share of government revenues and exports. In the early 1980s, rapidly rising oil revenues enabled the government to finance large-scale development projects with GDP growth averaging 5% annually, one of the highest rates in Africa. The government has mortgaged a substantial portion of its oil earnings, contributing to a shortage of revenues. The 12 January 1994 devaluation of Franc Zone currencies by 50% resulted in inflation of 61% in 1994, but inflation has subsided since. Economic reform efforts continued with the support of international organizations, notably the World Bank and the IMF. The reform program came to a halt in June 1997 when civil war erupted. Denis SASSOU-NGUESSO, who returned to power when the war ended in October 1997, publicly expressed interest in moving forward on economic reforms and privatization and in renewing cooperation with international financial institutions. However, economic progress was badly hurt by slumping oil prices and the resumption of armed conflict in December 1998, which worsened the republic's budget deficit. The current administration presides over an uneasy internal peace and faces difficult economic challenges of stimulating recovery and reducing poverty.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $2.324 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 3.7% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $800 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 7.4% industry: 52% services: 40.6% (2004 est.)

Labor force: NA

Unemployment rate: NA (2003)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1.8% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 25.8% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $870.1 million expenditures: $1.102 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: cassava (tapioca), sugar, rice, corn, peanuts, vegetables, coffee, cocoa; forest products

Industries: petroleum extraction, cement, lumber, brewing, sugar, palm oil, soap, flour, cigarettes

Industrial production growth rate: 0% (2002 est.)

Electricity - production: 348 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 0.3% hydro: 99.7% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 573.6 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 250 million kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 227,000 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil - consumption: 5,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Oil - proved reserves: 93.5 million bbl (1 January 2002)

Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - consumption: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves: 495.5 million cu m (1 January 2002)

Current account balance: $266 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $2.224 billion f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: petroleum, lumber, plywood, sugar, cocoa, coffee, diamonds

Exports - partners: China 26.8%, Taiwan 19.2%, North Korea 8.4%, US 7.3%, France 5.5%, South Korea 4.8% (2004)

Imports: $749.3 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: capital equipment, construction materials, foodstuffs

Imports - partners: France 32.7%, US 10.1%, Germany 6.2%, Italy 6%, China 5.2%, Netherlands 4.5% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $40.42 million (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $5 billion (2000 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $159.1 million (1995)

Currency (code): Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XAF); note - responsible authority is the Bank of the Central African States

Currency code: XAF

Exchange rates: Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XAF) per US dollar - 528.29 (2004), 581.2 (2003), 696.99 (2002), 733.04 (2001), 711.98 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Congo, Republic of the

Telephones - main lines in use: 7,000 (2003)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 330,000 (2003)

Telephone system: general assessment: services barely adequate for government use; key exchanges are in Brazzaville, Pointe-Noire, and Loubomo; intercity lines frequently out of order domestic: primary network consists of microwave radio relay and coaxial cable international: country code - 242; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 5, shortwave 3 (2001)

Radios: 341,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (2002)

Televisions: 33,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .cg

Internet hosts: 46 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)

Internet users: 15,000 (2003)

Transportation Congo, Republic of the

Railways: total: 894 km narrow gauge: 894 km 1.067-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 12,800 km paved: 1,242 km unpaved: 11,558 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: 4,385 km (on Congo and Oubanqui rivers) (2004)

Pipelines: gas 53 km; oil 646 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Brazzaville, Djeno, Impfondo, Ouesso, Oyo, Pointe-Noire

Airports: 32 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 4 over 3,047 m: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 3 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 28 1,524 to 2,437 m: 6 914 to 1,523 m: 11 under 914 m: 11 (2004 est.)

Military Congo, Republic of the

Military branches: Congolese Armed Forces (FAC): Army, Air Force (Armee de l'Air Congolaise), Navy, Gendarmerie, Republican Guard (2005)

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service (2001)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 686,123 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 360,492 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 34,281 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $126.5 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 2.8% (2004)

Transnational Issues Congo, Republic of the

Disputes - international: about 7,000 Congolese refugees fleeing internal civil conflicts since the mid-1990s still reside in the Democratic Republic of the Congo; the location of the boundary in the broad Congo River with the Democratic Republic of the Congo is indefinite except in the Pool Malebo/Stanley Pool area

Refugees and internally displaced persons: IDPs: 60,000 (multiple civil wars since 1992; most IDPs are ethnic Lari) (2004)

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Cook Islands

Introduction Cook Islands

Background: Named after Captain COOK, who sighted them in 1770, the islands became a British protectorate in 1888. By 1900, administrative control was transferred to New Zealand; in 1965 residents chose self-government in free association with New Zealand. The emigration of skilled workers to New Zealand and government deficits are continuing problems.

Geography Cook Islands

Location: Oceania, group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean, about one-half of the way from Hawaii to New Zealand

Geographic coordinates: 21 14 S, 159 46 W

Map references: Oceania

Area: total: 240 sq km land: 240 sq km water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: 1.3 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 120 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

Climate: tropical; moderated by trade winds

Terrain: low coral atolls in north; volcanic, hilly islands in south

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m highest point: Te Manga 652 m

Natural resources: NEGL

Land use: arable land: 17.39% permanent crops: 13.04% other: 69.57% (2001)

Irrigated land: NA

Natural hazards: typhoons (November to March)

Environment - current issues: NA

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Law of the Sea signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: the northern Cook Islands are seven low-lying, sparsely populated, coral atolls; the southern Cook Islands consist of eight elevated, fertile, volcanic isles where most of the populace lives

People Cook Islands

Population: 21,388 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: NA 15-64 years: NA 65 years and over: NA

Population growth rate: NA

Birth rate: NA

Death rate: NA

Sex ratio: NA

Infant mortality rate: total: NA male: NA female: NA

Life expectancy at birth: total population: NA male: NA female: NA

Total fertility rate: NA children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA

Nationality: noun: Cook Islander(s) adjective: Cook Islander

Ethnic groups: Cook Island Maori (Polynesian) 87.7%, part Cook Island Maori 5.8%, other 6.5% (2001 census)

Religions: Cook Islands Christian Church 55.9%, Roman Catholic 16.8%, Seventh Day Saint 7.9%, Church of Latter Day Saints 3.8%, other Protestant 5.8%, other 4.2%, unspecified 2.6%, none 3% (2001 census)

Languages: English (official), Maori

Literacy: definition: NA total population: 95% male: NA% female: NA%

Government Cook Islands

Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Cook Islands former: Harvey Islands

Dependency status: self-governing in free association with New Zealand; Cook Islands is fully responsible for internal affairs; New Zealand retains responsibility for external affairs and defense, in consultation with the Cook Islands

Government type: self-governing parliamentary democracy

Capital: Avarua

Administrative divisions: none

Independence: none (became self-governing in free association with New Zealand on 4 August 1965 and has the right at any time to move to full independence by unilateral action)

National holiday: Constitution Day, first Monday in August (1965)

Constitution: 4 August 1965

Legal system: based on New Zealand law and English common law

Suffrage: NA years of age; universal adult

Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Frederick GOODWIN (since 9 February 2001); New Zealand High Commissioner Kurt MEYER (since July 2001), representative of New Zealand head of government: Prime Minister Jim MARURAI (since 14 December 2004); Deputy Prime Minister Terepai MAOATE (since 9 August 2005) cabinet: Cabinet chosen by the prime minister; collectively responsible to Parliament elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; the UK representative is appointed by the monarch; the New Zealand high commissioner is appointed by the New Zealand Government; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition usually becomes prime minister

Legislative branch: unicameral Parliament (25 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) elections: last held 7 September 2004 (next to be held by 2009) election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - CIP 10, DAP 9, Demo Tumu 4, independent 1; note - one seat undecided pending by-election note: the House of Ariki (chiefs) advises on traditional matters and maintains considerable influence, but has no legislative powers

Judicial branch: High Court

Political parties and leaders: Cook Islands People's Party or CIP [Geoffrey HENRY]; Democratic Alliance Party or DAP [Terepai MAOATE]; New Alliance Party or NAP [Norman GEORGE]; Cook Islands National Party or CIN [Teariki HEATHER]; Demo Party Tumu [Robert WOONTON]

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ACP, AsDB, FAO, ICAO, ICFTU, IFAD, IFRCS, IOC, OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, UNESCO, UPU, WHO, WMO

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (self-governing in free association with New Zealand)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (self-governing in free association with New Zealand)

Flag description: blue, with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and a large circle of 15 white five-pointed stars (one for every island) centered in the outer half of the flag

Economy Cook Islands

Economy - overview: Like many other South Pacific island nations, the Cook Islands' economic development is hindered by the isolation of the country from foreign markets, the limited size of domestic markets, lack of natural resources, periodic devastation from natural disasters, and inadequate infrastructure. Agriculture provides the economic base with major exports made up of copra and citrus fruit. Manufacturing activities are limited to fruit processing, clothing, and handicrafts. Trade deficits are offset by remittances from emigrants and by foreign aid, overwhelmingly from New Zealand. In the 1980s and 1990s, the country lived beyond its means, maintaining a bloated public service and accumulating a large foreign debt. Subsequent reforms, including the sale of state assets, the strengthening of economic management, the encouragement of tourism, and a debt restructuring agreement, have rekindled investment and growth.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $105 million (2001 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 7.1% (2001 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $5,000 (2001 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 17% industry: 7.8% services: 75.2% (2000 est.)

Labor force: 8,000 (1996)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 29%, industry 15%, services 56% note: shortage of skilled labor (1995)

Unemployment rate: 13% (1996)

Population below poverty line: NA

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA highest 10%: NA

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 3.2% (2000 est.)

Budget: revenues: $28 million expenditures: $27 million, including capital expenditures of $3.3 million (FY00/01 est.)

Agriculture - products: copra, citrus, pineapples, tomatoes, beans, pawpaws, bananas, yams, taro, coffee; pigs, poultry

Industries: fruit processing, tourism, fishing, clothing, handicrafts

Industrial production growth rate: 1% (2002)

Electricity - production: 27 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% nuclear: 0% other: 0% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 25.11 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 450 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Exports: $9.1 million (2000)

Exports - commodities: copra, papayas, fresh and canned citrus fruit, coffee; fish; pearls and pearl shells; clothing

Exports - partners: Australia 34%, Japan 27%, New Zealand 25%, US 8% (2000)

Imports: $50.7 million (2000)

Imports - commodities: foodstuffs, textiles, fuels, timber, capital goods

Imports - partners: New Zealand 61%, Fiji 19%, US 9%, Australia 6%, Japan 2% (2000)

Debt - external: $141 million (1996 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $13.1 million; note - New Zealand continues to furnish the greater part (1995)

Currency (code): New Zealand dollar (NZD)

Currency code: NZD

Exchange rates: New Zealand dollars per US dollar - 1.5087 (2004), 1.7221 (2003), 2.1622 (2002), 2.3788 (2001), 2.2012 (2000)

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Communications Cook Islands

Telephones - main lines in use: 6,200 (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 1,500 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: Telecom Cook Islands offers international direct dialing, Internet, email, fax, and Telex domestic: the individual islands are connected by a combination of satellite earth stations, microwave systems, and VHF and HF radiotelephone; within the islands, service is provided by small exchanges connected to subscribers by open-wire, cable, and fiber-optic cable international: country code - 682; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 1, shortwave 0 (2004)

Radios: 14,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (outer islands receive satellite broadcasts) (2004)

Televisions: 4,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .ck

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 3 (2000)

Internet users: 3,600 (2002)

Transportation Cook Islands

Highways: total: 320 km paved: 33 km unpaved: 287 km (2000)

Ports and harbors: Avatiu

Merchant marine: total: 1 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 4,074 GRT/7,520 DWT by type: petroleum tanker 1 (2005)

Airports: 9 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 2 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 7 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 914 to 1,523 m: 4 under 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)

Military Cook Islands

Military branches: no regular military forces; Ministry of Police and Disaster Management (2004)

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of New Zealand, in consultation with the Cook Islands and at its request

Transnational Issues Cook Islands

Disputes - international: none

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Coral Sea Islands

Introduction Coral Sea Islands

Background: Scattered over some 1 million square kilometers of ocean, the Coral Sea Islands were declared a territory of Australia in 1969. They are uninhabited except for a small meteorological staff on the Willis Islets. Automated weather stations, beacons, and a lighthouse occupy many other islands and reefs.

Geography Coral Sea Islands

Location: Oceania, islands in the Coral Sea, northeast of Australia

Geographic coordinates: 18 00 S, 152 00 E

Map references: Oceania

Area: total: less than 3 sq km land: less than 3 sq km water: 0 sq km note: includes numerous small islands and reefs scattered over a sea area of about 780,000 sq km, with the Willis Islets the most important

Area - comparative: NA

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 3,095 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 3 nm exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm

Climate: tropical

Terrain: sand and coral reefs and islands (or cays)

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m highest point: unnamed location on Cato Island 6 m

Natural resources: NEGL

Land use: arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% (mostly grass or scrub cover) (2001)

Irrigated land: 0 sq km

Natural hazards: occasional tropical cyclones

Environment - current issues: no permanent fresh water resources

Geography - note: important nesting area for birds and turtles

People Coral Sea Islands

Population: no indigenous inhabitants note: there is a staff of three to four at the meteorological station (2005 est.)

Government Coral Sea Islands

Country name: conventional long form: Coral Sea Islands Territory conventional short form: Coral Sea Islands

Dependency status: territory of Australia; administered from Canberra by the Department of the Environment, Sport, and Territories

Legal system: the laws of Australia, where applicable, apply

Executive branch: administered from Canberra by the Department of the Environment, Sport, and Territories

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (territory of Australia)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (territory of Australia)

Flag description: the flag of Australia is used

Economy Coral Sea Islands

Economy - overview: no economic activity

Communications Coral Sea Islands

Communications - note: there are automatic weather stations on many of the isles and reefs relaying data to the mainland

Transportation Coral Sea Islands

Ports and harbors: none; offshore anchorage only

Military Coral Sea Islands

Military - note: defense is the responsibility of Australia; visited regularly by the Royal Australian Navy; Australia has control over the activities of visitors

Transnational Issues Coral Sea Islands

Disputes - international: none

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Costa Rica

Introduction Costa Rica

Background: Costa Rica is a Central American success story: since the late 19th century, only two brief periods of violence have marred its democratic development. Although still a largely agricultural country, it has expanded its economy to include strong technology and tourism sectors. The standard of living is relatively high. Land ownership is widespread.

Geography Costa Rica

Location: Central America, bordering both the Caribbean Sea and the North Pacific Ocean, between Nicaragua and Panama

Geographic coordinates: 10 00 N, 84 00 W

Map references: Central America and the Caribbean

Area: total: 51,100 sq km land: 50,660 sq km water: 440 sq km note: includes Isla del Coco

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than West Virginia

Land boundaries: total: 639 km border countries: Nicaragua 309 km, Panama 330 km

Coastline: 1,290 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm

Climate: tropical and subtropical; dry season (December to April); rainy season (May to November); cooler in highlands

Terrain: coastal plains separated by rugged mountains including over 100 volcanic cones, of which several are major volcanoes

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m highest point: Cerro Chirripo 3,810 m

Natural resources: hydropower

Land use: arable land: 4.41% permanent crops: 5.88% other: 89.71% (2001)

Irrigated land: 1,260 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: occasional earthquakes, hurricanes along Atlantic coast; frequent flooding of lowlands at onset of rainy season and landslides; active volcanoes

Environment - current issues: deforestation and land use change, largely a result of the clearing of land for cattle ranching and agriculture; soil erosion; coastal marine pollution; fisheries protection; solid waste management; air pollution

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands, Whaling signed, but not ratified: Marine Life Conservation

Geography - note: four volcanoes, two of them active, rise near the capital of San Jose in the center of the country; one of the volcanoes, Irazu, erupted destructively in 1963-65

People Costa Rica

Population: 4,016,173 (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 28.9% (male 593,540/female 566,361) 15-64 years: 65.5% (male 1,330,481/female 1,300,664) 65 years and over: 5.6% (male 104,564/female 120,563) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 26.03 years male: 25.59 years female: 26.5 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.48% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 18.6 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 4.33 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0.5 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.87 male(s)/female total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 9.95 deaths/1,000 live births male: 10.85 deaths/1,000 live births female: 9 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 76.84 years male: 74.26 years female: 79.55 years (2005 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.28 children born/woman (2005 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.6% (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 12,000 (2003 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths: 900 (2003 est.)

Nationality: noun: Costa Rican(s) adjective: Costa Rican

Ethnic groups: white (including mestizo) 94%, black 3%, Amerindian 1%, Chinese 1%, other 1%

Religions: Roman Catholic 76.3%, Evangelical 13.7%, Jehovah's Witnesses 1.3%, other Protestant 0.7%, other 4.8%, none 3.2%

Languages: Spanish (official), English

Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 96% male: 95.9% female: 96.1% (2003 est.)

Government Costa Rica

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Costa Rica conventional short form: Costa Rica local long form: Republica de Costa Rica local short form: Costa Rica

Government type: democratic republic

Capital: San Jose

Administrative divisions: 7 provinces (provincias, singular - provincia); Alajuela, Cartago, Guanacaste, Heredia, Limon, Puntarenas, San Jose

Independence: 15 September 1821 (from Spain)

National holiday: Independence Day, 15 September (1821)

Constitution: 7 November 1949

Legal system: based on Spanish civil law system; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court; has accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branch: chief of state: President Abel PACHECO (since 8 May 2002); First Vice President Lineth SABORIO (since 8 May 2002); Second Vice President (vacant); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government head of government: President Abel PACHECO (since 8 May 2002); First Vice President Lineth SABORIO (since 8 May 2002); Second Vice President (vacant); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: Cabinet selected by the president elections: president and vice presidents elected on the same ticket by popular vote for four-year terms; election last held 3 February 2002; run-off election held 7 April 2002 (next to be held February 2006) election results: Abel PACHECO elected president; percent of vote - Abel PACHECO (PUSC) 58%; Rolando ARAYA (PLN) 42%

Legislative branch: unicameral Legislative Assembly or Asamblea Legislativa (57 seats; members are elected by direct, popular vote to serve four-year terms) elections: last held 3 February 2002 (next to be held 3 February 2006) election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PUSC 19, PLN 17, PAC 14, PML 6, PRC 1; note - seats by party as of January 2005 - PUSC 19, PLN 16, PAC 8, PML 5, PRC 1, Patriotic Union 3, Homeland First 1, Authentic Member from Heredia 1, Democratic National Alliance 1, independent 2

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Corte Suprema (22 justices are elected for eight-year terms by the Legislative Assembly)

Political parties and leaders: Authentic Member from Heredia [Jose SALAS]; Citizen Action Party or PAC [Otton SOLIS]; Costa Rican Renovation Party or PRC [Justo OROZCO]; Democratic Force Party or PFD [Juan Carlos CHAVES Mora]; Democratic National Alliance [Emilia RODRIGUEZ]; General Union Party or PUGEN [Carlos Alberto FERNANDEZ Vega]; Homeland First [Juan Jose VARGAS]; Independent Worker Party or PIO [Jose Alberto CUBERO Carmona]; Libertarian Movement Party or PML [Otto GUEVARA Guth]; National Christian Alliance Party or ANC [Victor GONZALEZ]; National Integration Party or PIN [Walter MUNOZ Cespedes]; National Liberation Party or PLN [Francisco Antonio PACHECO]; National Patriotic Party or PPN [Daniel Enrique REYNOLDS Vargas]; National Rescue Party or PRN [Carlos VARGAS Solano]; Patriotic Union [Humberto ARCE]; Popular Vanguard [Trino BARRANTES Araya]; Social Christian Unity Party or PUSC [Lorena VASQUEZ Badilla]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Authentic Confederation of Democratic Workers or CATD (Communist Party affiliate); Chamber of Coffee Growers; Confederated Union of Workers or CUT (Communist Party affiliate); Costa Rican Confederation of Democratic Workers or CCTD (Liberation Party affiliate); Federation of Public Service Workers or FTSP; National Association for Economic Development or ANFE; National Association of Educators or ANDE; Rerum Novarum or CTRN (PLN affiliate) [Gilbert Brown]

International organization participation: BCIE, CACM, FAO, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, LAES, LAIA (observer), MIGA, NAM (observer), OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, RG, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Tomas DUENAS chancery: 2114 S Street NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 234-2945 FAX: [1] (202) 265-4795 consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco, San Juan (Puerto Rico), and Tampa consulate(s): Austin

Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Douglas M. BARNES embassy: Calle 120 Avenida O, Pavas, San Jose mailing address: APO AA 34020 telephone: [506] 220-3939 FAX: [506] 519-2305

Flag description: five horizontal bands of blue (top), white, red (double width), white, and blue, with the coat of arms in a white elliptical disk on the hoist side of the red band; above the coat of arms a light blue ribbon contains the words, AMERICA CENTRAL, and just below it near the top of the coat of arms is a white ribbon with the words, REPUBLICA COSTA RICA

Economy Costa Rica

Economy - overview: Costa Rica's basically stable economy depends on tourism, agriculture, and electronics exports. Poverty has been substantially reduced over the past 15 years, and a strong social safety net has been put into place. Foreign investors remain attracted by the country's political stability and high education levels, and tourism continues to bring in foreign exchange. Low prices for coffee and bananas have hurt the agricultural sector. The government continues to grapple with its large deficit and massive internal debt. The reduction of inflation remains a difficult problem because of rises in the price of imports, labor market rigidities, and fiscal deficits. The country also needs to reform its tax system and its pattern of public expenditure. Costa Rica recently concluded negotiations to participate in the US-Central American Free Trade Agreement, which, if ratified by the Costa Rican Legislature, would result in economic reforms and an improved investment climate.

GDP (purchasing power parity): $37.97 billion (2004 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 3.9% (2004 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $9,600 (2004 est.)

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 8.5% industry: 29.7% services: 61.8% (2004 est.)

Labor force: 1.81 million (2004 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 20%, industry 22%, services 58% (1999 est.)

Unemployment rate: 6.6% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty line: 18% (2004 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 1.1% highest 10%: 36.8% (2002)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 45.9 (1997)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 11.5% (2004 est.)

Investment (gross fixed): 19.2% of GDP (2004 est.)

Budget: revenues: $2.497 billion expenditures: $3.094 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2004 est.)

Public debt: 58% of GDP (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products: coffee, pineapples, bananas, sugar, corn, rice, beans, potatoes; beef; timber

Industries: microprocessors, food processing, textiles and clothing, construction materials, fertilizer, plastic products

Industrial production growth rate: 3.1% (2004 est.)

Electricity - production: 6.614 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 1.5% hydro: 81.9% nuclear: 0% other: 16.6% (2001)

Electricity - consumption: 5.733 billion kWh (2002)

Electricity - exports: 477 million kWh (2002)

Electricity - imports: 59 million kWh (2002)

Oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - consumption: 37,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)

Oil - exports: NA

Oil - imports: NA

Current account balance: $-980.3 million (2004 est.)

Exports: $6.184 billion (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities: coffee, bananas, sugar; pineapples; textiles, electronic components, medical equipment

Exports - partners: US 46.9%, Netherlands 5.3%, Guatemala 4.4% (2004)

Imports: $7.842 billion (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities: raw materials, consumer goods, capital equipment, petroleum

Imports - partners: US 46.1%, Japan 5.9%, Mexico 5.1%, Brazil 4.2% (2004)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $1.736 billion (2004 est.)

Debt - external: $5.962 billion (2004 est.)

Currency (code): Costa Rican colon (CRC)

Currency code: CRC

Exchange rates: Costa Rican colones per US dollar - 437.91 (2004), 398.66 (2003), 359.82 (2002), 328.87 (2001), 308.19 (2000)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Costa Rica

Telephones - main lines in use: 1.132 million (2002)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 528,047 (2002)

Telephone system: general assessment: good domestic telephone service in terms of breadth of coverage; restricted cellular telephone service domestic: point-to-point and point-to-multi-point microwave, fiber-optic, and coaxial cable link rural areas; Internet service is available international: country code - 506; connected to Central American Microwave System; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); two submarine cables (1999)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 65, FM 51, shortwave 19 (2002)

Radios: 980,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 20 (plus 43 repeaters) (2002)

Televisions: 525,000 (1997)

Internet country code: .cr

Internet hosts: 10,826 (2003)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 3 (of which only one is legal) (2000)

Internet users: 800,000 (2002)

Transportation Costa Rica

Railways: total: 278 km narrow gauge: 278 km 1.067-m gauge (2004)

Highways: total: 35,303 km paved: 4,236 km unpaved: 31,067 km (2002)

Waterways: 730 km (seasonally navigable by small craft) (2004)

Pipelines: refined products 242 km (2004)

Ports and harbors: Caldera, Puerto Limon

Merchant marine: total: 2 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 1,716 GRT/ DWT by type: passenger/cargo 2 (2005)

Airports: 149 (2004 est.)

Airports - with paved runways: total: 30 2,438 to 3,047 m: 2 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 914 to 1,523 m: 18 under 914 m: 8 (2004 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 119 914 to 1,523 m: 24 under 914 m: 95 (2004 est.)

Military Costa Rica

Military branches: no regular military forces; Ministry of Public Security, Government, and Police

Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age (2004)

Manpower available for military service: males age 18-49: 997,690 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military service: males age 18-49: 829,874 (2005 est.)

Manpower reaching military service age annually: males: 41,097 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $64.2 million (2004)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 0.4% (2003)

Transnational Issues Costa Rica

Disputes - international: legal dispute over navigational rights of Rio San Juan on the border with Nicaragua remains unresolved

Illicit drugs: transshipment country for cocaine and heroin from South America; illicit production of cannabis on small, scattered plots; domestic cocaine consumption, particularly crack cocaine, is rising

This page was last updated on 20 October, 2005

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@Cote d'Ivoire

Introduction Cote d'Ivoire

Background: Close ties to France since independence in 1960, the development of cocoa production for export, and foreign investment made Cote d'Ivoire one of the most prosperous of the tropical African states, but did not protect it from political turmoil. On 25 December 1999, a military coup - the first ever in Cote d'Ivoire's history - overthrew the government led by President Henri Konan BEDIE. Junta leader Robert GUEI held elections in late 2000, but excluded prominent opposition leader Alassane OUATTARA, blatantly rigged the polling results, and declared himself winner. Popular protest forced GUEI to step aside and brought runner-up Laurent GBAGBO into power. Ivorian dissidents and disaffected members of the military launched a failed coup attempt in September 2002. Rebel forces claimed the northern half of the country and in January 2003 were granted ministerial positions in a unity government under the auspices of the Linas-Marcoussis Peace Accord. President GBAGBO and rebel forces resumed implementation of the peace accord in December 2003 after a three-month stalemate, but issues that sparked the civil war, such as land reform and grounds for nationality remain unresolved. The central government has yet to exert control over the northern regions and tensions remain high between GBAGBO and rebel leaders. Several thousand French and West African troops remain in Cote d'Ivoire to maintain peace and facilitate the disarmament, demobilization, and rehabilitation process.

Geography Cote d'Ivoire

Location: Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Ghana and Liberia

Geographic coordinates: 8 00 N, 5 00 W

Map references: Africa

Area: total: 322,460 sq km land: 318,000 sq km water: 4,460 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly larger than New Mexico

Land boundaries: total: 3,110 km border countries: Burkina Faso 584 km, Ghana 668 km, Guinea 610 km, Liberia 716 km, Mali 532 km

Coastline: 515 km

Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm exclusive economic zone: 200 nm continental shelf: 200 nm

Climate: tropical along coast, semiarid in far north; three seasons - warm and dry (November to March), hot and dry (March to May), hot and wet (June to October)

Terrain: mostly flat to undulating plains; mountains in northwest

Elevation extremes: lowest point: Gulf of Guinea 0 m highest point: Mont Nimba 1,752 m

Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas, diamonds, manganese, iron ore, cobalt, bauxite, copper, gold, nickel, tantalum, silica sand, clay, cocoa beans, coffee, palm oil, hydropower

Land use: arable land: 9.75% permanent crops: 13.84% other: 76.41% (2001)

Irrigated land: 730 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: coast has heavy surf and no natural harbors; during the rainy season torrential flooding is possible

Environment - current issues: deforestation (most of the country's forests - once the largest in West Africa - have been heavily logged); water pollution from sewage and industrial and agricultural effluents

Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: most of the inhabitants live along the sandy coastal region; apart from the capital area, the forested interior is sparsely populated

People Cote d'Ivoire

Population: 17,298,040 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2005 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years: 41% (male 3,490,536/female 3,596,208) 15-64 years: 56.3% (male 4,920,726/female 4,820,326) 65 years and over: 2.7% (male 231,514/female 238,730) (2005 est.)

Median age: total: 19.05 years male: 19.36 years female: 18.76 years (2005 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.06% (2005 est.)

Birth rate: 35.51 births/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Death rate: 14.94 deaths/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2005 est.)

Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 0.97 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.97 male(s)/female total population: 1 male(s)/female (2005 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 90.83 deaths/1,000 live births male: 107.64 deaths/1,000 live births female: 73.52 deaths/1,000 live births (2005 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: