“Quick Look Reference Guide to South America”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 2004

 

Prepared by: Dr. Francisco J. Collazo
President/CEO/Chairman

Collazo Enterprises, Inc

6726 Odyssey Ave

Huntsville, Al 35806

 

 

Research Assistant/Editor: Charles Wade Pace



 

 

Acknowledgement:

 

I want to express my deep appreciation to Dr Peter Vander Haeghen for his exceptional support during the entire period of this project.  His guidance and experience have contributed immeasurably to the quality of the report.  Billie Foster, my Executive Assistant edited the reports, and Wade Pace, my research assistant ensured that all the facts for each country were validated.  My wife, Carmen and my daughter Rosana have supported me in all aspects of my business over the years.   In summary, I learned a tremendous amount about South America that leads me to the conclusion of how much I did not know, and how much I still do not know.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

1.0  Purpose

 

2.0  Executive Summary


2.1  Argentina


2.1.1  Demographics of Argentina: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.1.2  Geography of Argentina: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.1.3  Government of Argentina:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch

2.1.4  Economy of Argentina: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.1.5  Exports and Imports of Argentina: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.1.6  Communications of Argentina: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.1.7  Transportation of Argentina: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.1.8  Military of Argentina: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit of service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.1.9  Argentina’s link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.1.10  Major issues and disputes of Argentina: International disputes and illicit drugs.

2.2  Bolivia

2.2.1  Demographics of Bolivia: Population distribution by race, religion, age group, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.2.2  Geography of Bolivia: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.2.3  Government of Bolivia:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch

2.2.4  Economy of Bolivia: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.2.5  Exports and Imports of Bolivia: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.2.6  Communications of Bolivia: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.2.7   Transportation of Bolivia: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.2.8   Military of Bolivia: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.2.9  Bolivia’s link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.2.10  Major issues and disputes of Bolivia: International disputes and illicit drugs.

2.3  British Guiana

2.3.1  Demographics of British Guiana: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.3.2  Geography of British Guiana: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.3.3  Government of British Guiana:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch.

2.3.4  Economy of British Guiana: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.3.5  Exports and imports of British Guiana: Exports (dollar figure), exports commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.3.6  Communications of British Guiana: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.3.7  Transportation of British Guiana: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.3.8  Military of British Guiana: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.3.9  British Guiana link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.3.10  Major issues and disputes of British Guiana: International disputes and illicit drugs.

2.4  Brazil

2.4.1  Demographics of Brazil: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.4.2  Geography of Brazil: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.4.3  Government of Brazil:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch.

2.4.4  Economy of Brazil: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.4.5  Exports and Imports of Brazil: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.4.6  Communications of Brazil: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.4.7  Transportation of Brazil: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.4.8  Military of Brazil: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.4.9  Brazil’s link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.4.10  Major issues and disputes of Brazil: International disputes and illicit drugs.

2.5  Chilie

2.5.1  Demographics of Chilie: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.5.2  Geography of Chilie: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.5.3  Government of Chilie:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch.

2.5.4  Economy of Chilie: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.5.5  Exports and Imports of Chilie: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.5.6  Communications of Chilie: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.5.7  Transportation of Chilie: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.5.8  Military of Chilie: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.5.9  Chilie’s link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.5.10  Major issues and disputes of Chilie: International disputes and illicit drugs.

2.6  Colombia

2.6.1  Demographics of Colombia: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.6.2  Geography of Colombia: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.6.3  Government of Colombia:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch.

2.6.4  Economy of Colombia: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.6.5  Exports and Imports of Colombia: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.6.6  Communications of Colombia: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.6.7  Transportation of Colombia: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.6.8  Military of Colombia: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.6.9  Colombia’s link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.6.10  Major issues and disputes of Colombia: International disputes and illicit drugs.

2.7  Ecuador

2.7.1  Demographics of Ecuador: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.7.2  Geography of Ecuador: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.7.3  Government of Ecuador:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch.

2.7.4  Economy of Ecuador: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.7.5  Exports and Imports of Ecuador: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.7.6  Communications of Ecuador: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.7.7  Transportation of Ecuador: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.7.8  Military of Ecuador: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.7.9  Ecuador’s link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.7.10  Major issues and disputes of Ecuador: International disputes and illicit drugs.

2.8  French Guyana

2.8.1  Demographics of French Guyana: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex


2.8.2  Geography of French Guyana: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.8.3  Government of French Guyana:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch.

2.8.4  Economy of French Guyana: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.8.5  Exports and Imports of French Guyana: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.8.6  Communications of French Guyana: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.8.7  Transportation of French Guyana: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.8.8  Military of French Guyana: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.8.9  French Guyana’s link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.8.10  Major issues and disputes of French Guyana: International disputes and illicit drugs.

2.9  Paraguay

2.9.1  Demographics of Paraguay: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.9.2  Geography of Paraguay: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.9.3  Government of Paraguay:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch.

2.9.4  Economy of Paraguay: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.9.5  Exports and Imports of Paraguay: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.9.6  Communications of Paraguay: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.9.7  Transportation of Paraguay: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.9.8  Military of Paraguay: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.9.9  Paraguay’s Link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.9.10  Major issues and disputes of Paraguay: International disputes and illicit drugs.

2.10  Peru

2.10.1  Demographics of Peru: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.10.2  Geography of Peru: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.10.3  Government of Peru:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch.

2.10.4  Economy of Peru: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.10.5  Exports and Imports of Peru: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.10.6  Communications of Peru: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.10.7  Transportation of Peru: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.10.8  Military of Peru: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.10.9  Peru’s link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.10.10  Major issues and disputes of Peru: International disputes and illicit drugs.

 

 

2.11  Suriname

2.11.1  Demographics of Suriname: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.11.2  Geography of Suriname: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.11.3  Government of Suriname:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch

2.11.4  Economy of Suriname: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.11.5  Exports and imports of Suriname: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.11.6  Communications of Suriname: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.11.7  Transportation of Suriname: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.11.8  Military of Suriname: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.11.9  Suriname’s link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.11.10  Major issues and disputes of Suriname: International disputes and illicit drugs.

2.12  Uruguay

2.12.1  Demographics of Uruguay: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.12.2  Geography of Uruguay: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.12.3  Government of Uruguay:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch.

2.12.4  Economy of Uruguay: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.12.5  Exports and imports of Uruguay: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.12.6  Communications of Uruguay: telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.12.7  Transportation of Uruguay: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.12.8  Military of Uruguay: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.12.9  Uruguay’s Link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.12.10  Major issues and disputes of Uruguay: International disputes and illicit drugs.

2.13  Venezuela

2.13.1  Demographics of Venezuela: Population distribution by race, religion, age groups, literacy rate, mortality rate of children, longevity by sex.


2.13.2  Geography of Venezuela: Land area, agriculture land, commercial zone, water land, flooding areas and earthquake areas.

2.13.3  Government of Venezuela:  Government overview, executive branch, legislative branch, judicial branch.

2.13.4  Economy of Venezuela: Economy overview, exports (dollar figure), gdp, gdp real growth rate, gdp percapita, gdp composition by sector, population below poverty line, inflation rate, labor force, unemployment rate and budget.

2.13.5 Exports and imports of Venezuela: Exports (dollar figure), export commodities, export partners, imports (dollar figure), import commodities, import partners, debt external, economic aid recipient, currency, currency code, currency exchange rates, and fiscal year.

2.13.6  Communications of Venezuela: Telephone main lines in use, telephone mobile cellular system, radio broadcast, television broadcast stations, internet country code, internet service providers, and internet users.

2.13.7  Transportation of Venezuela: Railways, highways, waterways, pipelines, ports and harbors, merchant marine, airports, airports with paved runways, and airports without paved runways.

 

2.13.8  Military of Venezuela: Military branches, manpower military age, manpower availability, manpower fit for service, manpower reaching military age annually, military expenditures (dollar figure), and military expenditures percent of gdp.

2.13.9  Venezuela’s link to Spanish culture and Catholic church.

2.13.10  Major issues and disputes of Venezuela: International disputes and illicit drugs.

3.0  Gross National Product ranking in alphabetical order.

 

3.1  Gross National Product ranking by population.

 

3.2  Gross National Product ranking in dollar amount.

 

4.0  Chronology of South America.  

 

 

 

 

“Quick Look Reference Guide to South America”

 

 

1.0  Purpose

 

The purpose of this report is to provide a "Quick Look" reference of South America plus historical and statistical information that can be used as a reference tool for conducting future business.  The report shall encompass the history of each country outlining the events leading to independence of the country.  The demographics will outline the age group, life expectancy and mortality rate.  The geography of each country describes the landmass and topography of the land, earthquake and flooding areas.  The economy activity will include the export and import levels of the main products produced in the country and type of commodity imported from other countries.  The currency dependence on another country's currency and what country the currency is slaved to the dependent country.  The cultural aspects of the country and the influence of the Catholic Church and Spain reign on the entire continent. The disputes among countries in South America will be addressed.  An analysis will be performed to measure progress for the last one hundred years in the continent.

 

2.0  Executive Summary

 

History: After 1453, when the Turks completed the conquest of the Byzantine Empire and won control of the eastern Mediterranean, the western nations, chiefly Portugal and Spain, were forced to seek a new route to Asia.  The Portuguese, who had made a number of pioneering voyages southward in the Atlantic Ocean, sought the new route by probing the coast of Africa, reaching the Cape of Good Hope in 1486.  In 1492 Christopher Columbus attempted to reach India by sailing due west across the Atlantic Ocean; but he landed in the present-day West Indies, opening up a new world to European commerce and civilization.  For information concerning the pre-Columbian cultures of South America, see Native Americans of Middle and South America: History; Araucanian; Arawak; Carib; Chibcha; Guaraní; Inca; Pre-Columbian Art and Architecture; Quechua; Tiwanaku; Tupí-Guaraní. After Columbus returned to Europe, Spain and Portugal became involved in controversy concerning land rights in the New World.  The dispute was settled in 1493 by Pope Alexander VI, who allotted to Portugal all new territory east of a line in the Atlantic Ocean running due north and south 100 leagues west of the Azores and to Spain, all territory to the west of the line (see Demarcation, Line of).  The demarcation line was later modified, with the result that Portugal obtained suzerainty over the eastern bulge of South America.  This region subsequently became Brazil. On August 1, 1498, during his third voyage, Columbus sailed to a point off the mouth of the Orinoco River and sighted the South American mainland.  After cruising along the coast for several days he began to comprehend the continental character of the region.

Post-Columbian Explorers: The next European to reach the continent was Portuguese navigator Pedro Álvares Cabral. In April 1500 a fleet under his command anchored off the coast of present-day Brazil, which he claimed for Portugal.  The Portuguese, who had meanwhile found their way to India by sailing around Africa, paid little attention for three decades to the territory found by Cabral. During this period the Spanish steadily intensified exploration and colonizing activities in the New World, devoting most of their effort during the first 20 years to the West Indies and Central America.  Various explorers, chiefly navigators in the service of Spain, visited the northeastern coast of the continent in the early years of the 16th century.  Noteworthy among these men was Spanish mariners Vicente Yáñez Pinzón, Alonso de Ojeda, and Pedro Alonso Niño; Spanish navigator and geographer Juan de la Cosa; and Italian-born navigator Amerigo Vespucci.  Late in 1519 Portuguese mariner Ferdinand Magellan, then seeking a westward route to the East for the Spanish monarchy, explored the estuary of the Río de la Plata.  He resumed his search in the next year, cruising southward.  On November 28, 1520, having completed the passage of the strait that now bears his name, he simultaneously accomplished his mission and realized the dream of countless navigators.

Exploration Of The Interior: Germans began the systematic exploration and conquest of the South American interior, paradoxically.  In 1529 Bartholomaus Welser received a huge grant of territory in South America from Charles V, Holy Roman emperor and king of Spain, who was in debt to him.  Welser immediately dispatched an expedition to the territory, which included present-day Venezuela. About 17 years later Welser's grant was revoked, partly because of extreme brutality inflicted by the German colonists on the Native Americans.  The first European to penetrate the continental interior successfully was Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro. Pushing southward from Panama, he invaded the gold-rich empire of the Inca in 1531.  Within five years, by skillful use of arms and treachery, Pizarro acquired control of the Inca Empire, which included all of present-day Peru, Chile, and Bolivia. One of Pizarro's chief associates was Diego de Almagro, who conquered what is now northern Chile. Spanish soldier Pedro de Mendoza began the conquest and colonization of the region bordering the Río de la Plata in 1535.  He founded a settlement at Buenos Aires in 1536. Between 1536 and 1538 Spanish soldier Gonzalo Jiménez de Quesada subjugated the Chibcha and founded the Audiencia of New Granada (present-day Colombia).  In 1539 Gonzalo Pizarro, brother of Francisco, crossed the Andes and arrived at the upper reaches of the Amazon River.  One of his companions, Francisco de Orellana, followed the river down to its mouth, reaching the Atlantic Ocean in 1542. In the previous year conquistador Pedro de Valdivia began the systematic subjugation of the Araucanian, the native people of Chile.  Valdivia founded Santiago in 1541. Meanwhile (about 1530) the Portuguese had begun to establish settlements along the coast of the eastern bulge of South America.  Sugar estates were soon established on the eastern coast of Brazil, leading to the importation of millions of African slaves.  Exploration westwards extended to the Amazon, and in the 17th century exploring parties (bandeiras) extended Portuguese control west and southward from São Paulo.  An important gold strike in 1693 rapidly intensified settlement in what is now Minas Gerais State in Brazil, attracting major immigration from Portugal and promoting the rapid growth of the new port of Rio de Janeiro.  After almost three centuries of economic exploitation and political injustice, a powerful revolutionary movement swept the South American colonies.  The movement, which was led by the Creoles and which was basically liberal in character, was stimulated by the successful revolt of the British colonies in North America (1775-1783) and by the French Revolution (1789-1799). 

Problems of the 19th Century: At the end of the Wars of Independence the sovereign Spanish states in South America were Great Colombia, Peru, Chile, the United Provinces of the Río de la Plata (later Argentina), Paraguay, and Bolivia.  Between 1830 and 1832 Great Colombia evolved into the sovereign states of Venezuela, Ecuador, and New Granada. Until 1903 New Granada, which later became Colombia, included Panama.  Uruguay, after periods of Portuguese and Brazilian control, became a sovereign state in 1828.

Geography Description: South America, fourth largest of the Earth's seven continents (after Asia, Africa, and North America), occupying 17,820,900 sq km (6,880,700 sq mi), or 12 percent of the Earth's land surface. It lies astride the equator and tropic of Capricorn and is joined by the Isthmus of Panama, on the north, to Central and North America.  The continent extends 7,400 km (4,600 mi) from the Caribbean Sea on the north to Cape Horn on the south, and its maximum width, between Ponta do Seixas, on Brazil's Atlantic coast, and Punta Pariñas, on Peru's Pacific coast, is 5,160 km (3,210 mi).  South America has a 2000 estimated population of 348 million, or 6 percent of the world's people. The continent comprises 12 nations.  Ten of the countries are Latin: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, and Venezuela.  Two of the nations are former dependencies: Guyana, of the United Kingdom, and Suriname, of The Netherlands. South America also includes French Guiana, an overseas department of France. Located at great distances from the continent in the Pacific Ocean are several territories of South American republics: the Juan Fernández Islands and Easter Island (Chile) and the Galápagos Islands (Ecuador).  Nearer the coast, in the Atlantic Ocean, is the Fernando de Noronha Archipelago, which is a Brazilian territory, and, farther south, the British dependency of the Falkland Islands, which is claimed by Argentina as the Islas Malvinas.  The coastline of South America is relatively regular except in the extreme south and southwest, where numerous fjords indent it.

 

Andes Mountains: The northern and western fringes are dominated by the Andes Mountains, the second highest mountain range in the world.  The main lowland is the vast Amazon Basin in the equatorial part of the continent; the Amazon River, the world’s second longest river, drains it.  The Orinoco River drains lowland in the north; to the south lies the Paraguay-Paraná basin.  The lowest point in South America (40 m/ 131 ft below sea level) is on Península Valdés in eastern Argentina, and the greatest elevation (6,960 m/22,834 ft) is atop Aconcagua in western Argentina, the highest peak in the Western Hemisphere.  Rising abruptly from the northwestern and western coasts of the continent is the Andes.  They consist of a single chain in Venezuela, in the north, and through much of Chile and Argentina, in the south, but the central part of the mountain system consists of two or three parallel axes of mountains, known as cordilleras, or ranges. In southwestern Bolivia and southern Peru, a region of large intermountain plateaus called the Altiplano separates the ranges.  In Peru and Argentina relatively narrow but deep valleys separate the ranges.  Among the two-dozen peaks that exceed an elevation of 17,000 ft (equivalent to 5,182 m) are a number of active volcanoes located in south central Chile, southern Peru and Bolivia, and Ecuador.

Rivers:  The greater part of South America is drained to the Atlantic Ocean by three river systems: the Amazon, Orinoco, and Paraguay-Paraná. Each of these large rivers also provides access to the interior.  The most important of these is the Magdalena River and its tributary, the Cauca River.  This system, which drains north through Andean valleys in western Colombia to empty into the Caribbean Sea, has also provided a traditional access route to the interior.  Scores of short Andean streams have sustained agriculture for centuries in Ecuador, Peru, Chile, and northwestern Argentina. Considerable hydroelectric power potential exists in the streams of the Andes and in those of the Guiana and Brazilian Highlands.  The Mantaro Valley hydroelectric scheme in the Andes of Peru provides most of Lima's electricity.

 

Lakes: South America has few large lakes. Many of the large permanent lakes are situated at relatively high elevations in the Andes. Among the largest are Lake Titicaca and Lake Poopó in Bolivia; Buenos Aires, Argentino, and Nahuel Huapí lakes in Argentina; and Lake Valencia in Venezuela

 

South America, fourth largest of the Earth's seven continents (after Asia, Africa, and North America), occupying 17,820,900 sq km (6,880,700 sq mi), or 12 percent of the Earth's land surface. It lies astride the equator and tropic of Capricorn and is joined by the Isthmus of Panama, on the north, to Central and North America. The continent extends 7,400 km (4,600 mi) from the Caribbean Sea on the north to Cape Horn on the south, and its maximum width, between Ponta do Seixas, on Brazil's Atlantic coast, and Punta Pariñas, on Peru's Pacific coast, is 5,160 km (3,210 mi).

 

South America has a 2000 estimated population of 348 million, or 6 percent of the world's people. The continent comprises 12 nations. Ten of the countries are Latin: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, and Venezuela. Two of the nations are former dependencies: Guyana, of the United Kingdom, and Suriname, of The Netherlands. South America also includes French Guiana, an overseas department of France. Located at great distances from the continent in the Pacific Ocean are several territories of South American republics: the Juan Fernández Islands and Easter Island (Chile) and the Galápagos Islands (Ecuador). Nearer the coast, in the Atlantic Ocean, is the Fernando de Noronha Archipelago, which is a Brazilian territory, and, farther south, the British dependency of the Falkland Islands, which is claimed by Argentina as the Islas Malvinas.  The coastline of South America is relatively regular except in the extreme south and southwest, where numerous fjords indent it.

 

The Natural Environment:  South America consists of four upland provinces, extending inland from the coasts, and, between them, three lowland provinces.  The northern and western fringes are dominated by the Andes Mountains, the second highest mountain range in the world. The broader—and generally less elevated—highland areas of the Guiana and Brazilian massifs and the Patagonian Plateau fringe most of the eastern coast.  The main lowland is the vast Amazon Basin in the equatorial part of the continent; the Amazon River, the world’s second longest river, drains it.  The Orinoco River drains a lowland in the north; to the south lies the Paraguay-Paraná basin.  The lowest point in South America (40 m/ 131 ft below sea level) is on Península Valdés in eastern Argentina, and the greatest elevation (6,960 m/22,834 ft) is atop Aconcagua in western Argentina, the highest peak in the Western Hemisphere.

 

A. Geological History

 

The oldest and most stable structural element of the continent is the shield area of the Brazilian and Guiana highlands of the east and northeast.  It comprises a Precambrian (before 570 million years ago) complex of igneous and metamorphic rocks. In most places sedimentary rocks, mostly of Paleozoic age (570 million to 225 million years ago), overlay the shield although some areas of younger basalts occur, notably in southern Brazil.  Fossils found in the Brazilian Highlands offer evidence of continental drift, indicating that in the Permian period the continent was linked to Gondwanaland, a great landmass incorporating Africa and Asia.

 

The complex that underlies the Patagonian Plateau is largely mantled by sediments deposited in the Mesozoic Era (225 million to 65 million years ago) and Tertiary Period (65 million to 1.6 million years ago) and by basalts of recent formation.

 

Material eroded from the old shield areas contributed to the thick deposits of sediments in the surrounding seas. These sedimentary formations were uplifted repeatedly in the Mesozoic Era to form the coast ranges of Chile and southern Peru and the higher and more extensive Andes.  This mountain-building process, which continued through the Tertiary Period, was accompanied by intrusions of magma (molten rock) and by the formation of volcanoes.  Volcanic and seismic activity continues all up and down the continent's western rim.  The glaciers of the southernmost Andes are remnants of the great ages of glaciation of the Quaternary Period (beginning 2.5 million years ago).  The erosion of the highlands continues to contribute sediments to surrounding lowlands.

 

B.  Natural Regions

 

Rising abruptly from the northwestern and western coasts of the continent is the Andes.  They consist of a single chain in Venezuela, in the north, and through much of Chile and Argentina, in the south, but the central part of the mountain system consists of two or three parallel axes of mountains, known as cordilleras, or ranges.  In southwestern Bolivia and southern Peru, a region of large intermountain plateaus called the Altiplano separates the ranges. In Peru and Argentina relatively narrow but deep valleys separate the ranges.  Among the two-dozen peaks that exceed an elevation of 17,000 ft (equivalent to 5,182m) are a number of active volcanoes located in south central Chile, southern Peru and Bolivia, and Ecuador.

 

The vast uplands of Guiana, in the northeast, and of Brazil, in the east, have rolling to hilly surfaces, with broad plateaus and high mesas.  The plateaus are higher and less broad in the highlands of Guiana.  In the Brazilian Highlands, the greatest relief occurs in mountains that lie along the eastern coast, in many places rising abruptly from the sea.  In general, the rocks of these uplands have weathered into infertile, reddish soils. Fertile soils derived from basaltic rocks are found in many valleys, however.  To the south is the less elevated and relatively flat Patagonian Plateau (see Patagonia).  Although soils here are generally fertile, climatic constraints limit their agricultural usefulness.

 

The northernmost of the continent's principal lowland areas is the Orinoco Basin, which includes the Llanos—a region of alluvial plains and low mesas—and a vast system of valleys that converge toward the Amazon between the Caquetá and Madeira rivers.  The Amazon Basin itself is a region of slightly rolling terrain. Farther south are the shallow valleys and flat plains of the Gran Chaco and the Pampas, both of which merge with the swampy floodplains of the Paraguay and Paraná rivers.

 

C.  Drainage and Water Resources

 

The greater part of South America is drained to the Atlantic Ocean by three river systems: the Amazon, Orinoco, and Paraguay-Paraná. Each of these large rivers also provides access to the interior.  The smaller São Francisco River drains northeastern Brazil. Numerous lesser rivers drain the Caribbean and Pacific flanks of the Andes.  The most important of these is the Magdalena River and its tributary, the Cauca River. This system, which drains north through Andean valleys in western Colombia to empty into the Caribbean Sea, has also provided a traditional access route to the interior. Scores of short Andean streams have sustained agriculture for centuries in Ecuador, Peru, Chile, and northwestern Argentina. Considerable hydroelectric power potential exists in the streams of the Andes and in those of the Guiana and Brazilian Highlands.  The Mantaro Valley hydroelectric scheme in the Andes of Peru provides most of Lima's electricity.

 

South America has few large lakes. Many of the large permanent lakes are situated at relatively high elevations in the Andes. Among the largest are Lake Titicaca and Lake Poopó in Bolivia; Buenos Aires, Argentino, and Nahuel Huapí lakes in Argentina; and Lake Valencia in Venezuela.

 

D.  Climate

 

South America is dominated by relatively warm climatic regimes.  There are climate broad zones of the continent. The entire continent along the equator is a belt of humid tropical climate that grades to the north and south into broad zones where the length of the rainy season and the amount of rainfall diminish.  These zones have wet summers and dry winters and are subject to prolonged droughts. Droughts are a particularly serious problem in northeastern Brazil and along the northern coast of Venezuela and Colombia.  The areas of rainy tropical and tropical wet-dry climate extend along the Pacific coast of Colombia and Ecuador but are marked by a sharp southern transition into the arid climate of coastal Peru and northern Chile.  In the northern half of South America only the Andes region has a cool climate.  Temperatures decrease with increasing elevation, so that the tropical climate of the lowlands and lower slopes changes to subtropical and temperate climates at intermediate elevations, and finally to cold alpine climate at the mountain crests.  South of the tropic of Capricorn, South America has cool to cold winters and cool to warm summers.

 

Vegetation:  The vegetation zones of South America correspond closely with the climatic zones.  The areas of wet tropical climate have a dense cover of rain forest, or selva.  The largest forest area in the world, this rain forest covers much of equatorial South America, including the Brazilian coast and the lower slopes of the Andes, and contains tropical hardwoods, palms, tree ferns, bamboo, and lianas.  Open forests and brush-lands are found in the areas of winter drought chiefly on the Venezuelan coast, in northeastern Brazil, and on the Gran Chaco. Between these drier areas and the rain forest are zones of tall grass (savannas, or campos) and of scrub and grass (campos cerrados). Mixed (containing both deciduous and evergreen trees) and deciduous forests occur in southern Brazil and along the slopes of the Andes. In Brazil the forest grades, to the south, into areas of rolling prairie interrupted by wooded hills. Grassy plains and open thorn scrub forest characterize the Gran Chaco.  The flat Pampas of east central Argentina is the largest mid-latitude grassland of South America.  To the south a zone of scrub steppe (monte) marks the transition to the low brush and bunch grass that cover the drier and cooler Patagonia region.  Along the Pacific coast, the vegetation grades northward from forest to open woodland, to shrubs and grass in central Chile, and eventually to the scrub and desert vegetation that prevails into northern Peru and up to the mountain flanks.

 

Animals:  South America, Central America, the lowlands of Mexico, and the West Indies may be classified as a single zoogeographic region usually called the Neo-tropical Region. Fauna is characterized by variety and a singular lack of affinity with the fauna of other continents, including North America north of the Mexican Plateau. Found throughout are families of mammals absolutely confined to the region, including two unique species of monkey, bloodsucking bats, and many unusual rodents. The region has only one kind of bear, the spectacled bear; no horses or related animals, aside from one species of tapir; and no ruminants, except lamoids (members of the camel family), which include alpacas, llamas, and vicuñas.

 

Natural Resources: South America has diverse mineral resources, many of which have not been extensively exploited. Mineral deposits are widely distributed, but certain areas of the continent are particularly renowned for their wealth. In the Andes placer gold has been worked in various areas since before the colonial era. The mountains between central Peru and southern Bolivia produced silver and mercury in the colonial era, and industrial minerals such as copper, tin, lead, and zinc today. Copper is worked at large deposits in northern and central Chile and in central and southern Peru. A highly mineralized area containing bauxite, iron ore, and gold lies between Ciudad Bolívar and northern Suriname, near the northern margin of the Guiana Highlands.

 

Population:  South America's overall population has been increasing rapidly, especially in the developing tropical countries, and urban populations have increased greatly in all parts of the continent. Immigration to South America has been minimal since 1930. Internal migration has been of great significance, however, increasing the concentration of people living on the continent's periphery, while vast areas of the interior remain sparsely populated. The overall population density is 20 persons per sq km (52 per sq mi), but more than half the continent has a population density of fewer than 2 persons per sq km (5 per sq mi). Although South America's population has a diverse ethnic heritage, its principal elements are the Native Americans and the descendants of Spaniards, Portuguese, and African blacks. The Native Americans are most numerous in the highlands of the central Andean republics. People of Spanish descent are relatively more numerous in Argentina and Uruguay than elsewhere. In Brazil, the Portuguese are the predominant Iberian element, and the black and mulatto groups are more numerous than in any other South American country. In the Guiana’s and coastal Colombia and Ecuador, the number of blacks is also large.

 

Demography:  South America's population more than doubled between 1960 and 2000. About one-half of the continent's people live in Brazil. Six other countries claim nearly 45 percent of the remaining population: Colombia (11.5 percent), Argentina (10.7 percent), Peru (7.8 percent), Venezuela (6.8 percent), Chile (4.4 percent), and Ecuador (3.7 percent). Average population growth rates approached 2.4 percent per year between 1965 and 1990, although Argentina and Uruguay have grown more slowly, as, to a lesser extent, have Chile and Bolivia. The growth in population is due largely to natural increase, the birth rate being 21 per 1,000 people and the death rate 8 per 1,000 in 2000. In many areas death rates have been declining substantially for decades, whereas high birth rates only recently have shown a downward tendency. The estimated number of people under the age of 15 in 2000 was 31 percent, while the median age was 25.1 years in 2000.  Natural increase and migration from provincial areas have caused urban populations to grow by up to 4 percent a year. In Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay, the rate of urban growth has slowed, but in the tropical countries, cities are growing with great rapidity. In the most urbanized of the larger countries—Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, and Venezuela—at least 80 percent of the population lives in urban centers; in the least urbanized—Bolivia, Ecuador, and Paraguay—less than 65 percent of the population is classified as urban.

 

Languages:  Spanish is the official language of 9 of the 13 political entities on the continent. Portuguese is the official language of Brazil; English, of Guyana; Dutch, of Suriname; and French, of French Guiana. Among the scores of Native American languages, the largest numbers of people speaks Quechua, Aymara, and Guaraní. The speakers of Quechua (7.6 million in 1998) are primarily in the central Andean highlands and the speakers of Aymara (2.1 million in 1998) in the highlands of Bolivia, Chile, and Peru. Guaraní is an official language of Paraguay, along with Spanish.

 

Religion:  South America is unusual among the continents for its religious homogeneity. About 90 percent of the population is Roman Catholic. Most of the Protestants are in Brazil and Chile; the remainder is widely distributed, primarily in urban centers. The Jews of South America also tend to be urban dwellers and are widely distributed; about three-fourths are in Argentina and Brazil, and more than 10 percent are in Uruguay and Chile. Hindus, Muslims, and Buddhists are concentrated in Guyana and Suriname. The Spaniards and Portuguese brought the Roman Catholic faith to the continent during the Spanish conquest. Protestantism is a reflection of later European immigration and of missionary activity begun in the 19th century. North American evangelical groups were particularly active in the 20th century.

 

Economic Development: Historically a colonial area, economically dependent on the export of agricultural and mineral commodities, South America has experienced growth and diversification in most of its economic sectors since the 1930s. After World War II (1939-1945) national policies of import substitution (the local manufacture of formerly imported goods) reshaped industry. The benefits of this rapid economic development have not spread evenly but have accrued more to the leading cities and their environs. The development of free trade, beginning in the late 1960s with the Andean Pact and continuing into the 2000s with the Southern Cone Common Market (MERCOSUR) and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), has greatly improved South America's economic prospects.

 

Agriculture:  Most crop and livestock production in South America is for home consumption and domestic markets. Nevertheless, revenues from agricultural exports are very important in many South American countries.  Although agriculture, together with hunting, fishing, and forestry, accounted for about 12 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) within the continent in the 1990s, it accounted for more than 30 percent of the labor force in Bolivia, Paraguay, Peru, and Ecuador, between 20 percent and 30 percent in Colombia, Brazil, and Guyana, and less than 20 percent in Suriname, Chile, Uruguay, Venezuela, Argentina, and French Guiana. 

 

Forestry and Fishing: Although the continent is 50 percent forested and is surrounded by seas rich in marine life, the forestry and fishing industries in most South American nations are small and oriented toward domestic markets.  Some tropical hardwoods and softwoods are exported, however, much of the wood coming from the Amazon Basin, where large tracts of forest are being cleared for conversion into range and cropland. Also exported is pine lumber from southern Brazil and south central Chile, together with some pulpwood. Significant areas of commercial forest have been planted in Chile and Brazil. The widespread planting of eucalyptus trees for firewood, for timbering, and for use in rough construction has historically been important.

Mining:  Most mining for export is on a large scale. The long history of foreign corporate control of South American mining operations is waning because of national political pressures. Petroleum, copper, bauxite, and iron ore are the principal commodities in value and volume, but mineral exports are greatly diversified. South America is an important world producer of lead, zinc, manganese, and tin. Although all South American countries have some mineral production, Venezuela's oil and gas account for more than half the total value of the continent's output. Mineral production is of great importance to several national economies. Crude and refined petroleum, and derivatives dominate Venezuela’s exports, while the dependence on mineral exports is somewhat less in Suriname, Bolivia, and Chile. Peru and, in recent years, Ecuador, have relied heavily on the sale of minerals. Such exports generate government revenue, but mining contributes little to continental GDP and employment. Nevertheless, mineral commodities are important to the continent's growing industrial diversification.

Manufacturing:  By the late 1970s manufacturing accounted for at least 25 percent of South America's GDP, up from 20 percent in 1956, when it first exceeded in importance both agriculture and commerce and finance. In the late 1990s, the industrial sector accounted for more than 30 percent of the GDP in Argentina, Venezuela, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Peru, and Ecuador.

Energy:  Petroleum and natural gas are the principal sources of energy in South America. More primitive sources, such as firewood and charcoal, however, are used widely in industry, sometimes in making iron and steel or in refining sugar. Dependence on petroleum and natural gas is of concern because only Colombia and Venezuela are self-sufficient in petroleum. Distribution needs are met with fairly extensive petroleum and gas pipeline systems in Argentina, Venezuela, and Colombia and lesser systems elsewhere. Nevertheless, most pipeline systems in South America transport crude oil and gas to export terminals, rather than to internal markets. Coal, available in relatively small reserves, was important to the early development of rail and water transportation and industry in Chile, Argentina, Brazil, and Colombia, but has long been superseded in importance as an energy source. Alcohol derived from sugarcane is an important automotive fuel in Brazil. Hydroelectric power has become a viable alternative to thermal-electric power only since the 1950s. The development of hydroelectric power began in Brazil, Chile, and Colombia; installed hydroelectric capacities now constitute more than 60 percent of electricity-producing capacity in Paraguay, Brazil, Uruguay, Colombia, and Bolivia. Hydroelectric power is also important in Peru, Chile, Ecuador, Suriname, and Argentina, where installed hydroelectricity-generating capacity accounts for more than 40 percent of all generating capacity. Hydroelectric development ranges from small installations used by provincial towns to the enormous facilities built in the middle and upper Paraná Basin and the upper and lower reaches of the São Francisco River.

Transportation:  Although a great variety of forms of transportation are in common use, the road and railroad networks are of primary importance because of the bulk and value of their freight and the number of passengers carried. Motor-vehicle traffic dominates in most parts of the continent. Railroads and coastal and river ships remain relatively more important in Argentina, Brazil, and Chile than elsewhere, but even in these countries the bus, truck, and automobile are the principal modes of transporting goods and passengers. Air transport has developed rapidly since the end of World War II, and an important network exists in South America. National rail and highway networks are dense only in southeastern Brazil and in the Pampas of Argentina and, to a lesser extent, in the populous areas of Uruguay, Chile, Colombia, and Ecuador. The construction of roads has been most important since the 1950s. Venezuela and coastal Peru have a good system of surfaced roads; in Paraguay and Bolivia the road networks are not as good. The Andean countries have been extending roads into the interior for decades, and Brazil has spanned parts of the Amazon Basin with roads.

Trade:  Most of South America's trade is intercontinental, the United States, Western Europe, and Japan being major trading partners. Petroleum and its derivatives are the principal components of foreign trade. Brazil and Venezuela dominate the continent's export trade, and Brazil accounts for much of the imports. Intra-continental trade has been fostered since the 1960s by regional trade associations, the most important of which is the Latin American Integration Association (LAIA), formerly known as the Latin American Free Trade Association (LAFTA). Commodities such as wheat, cattle, wine, and bananas are principal items of intra-continental trade, and manufactured goods are of growing importance. Nevertheless, the continent's external trades in agricultural and mining commodity remains more important than the internal trade of these commodities. South America contributes significantly to world trade in petroleum, coffee, copper, bauxite, fishmeal, and oilseed, trade in these and other primary goods are essential to the underwriting of the continent's economic development.

References 

David J. Robinson/Microsoft ® Encarta ® Reference Library 2004. © 1993-2003 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

 

2.1

ARGENTINA:

Argentina:

Background: It is the second-largest country in South America (after Brazil). Argentina has five border countries and a coastline of 5,000 kilometers.  There are disputes with some of the border states.  The strategy of defense of the country is organized in five sectors.  The climate has three zones: mostly temperate, arid in southeast, sub-Antarctic in southwest-The last two zones are not very suitable for agriculture. The terrain is comprised of the rich plains of the Pampas in northern half that have a variety of minerals (lead, zinc, tin, copper, iron ore, manganese, petroleum, and uranium) (and is subject to flooding), flat to rolling plateau of Patagonia in south, rugged Andes along western border that connects with Chile subject to earthquake. Cerro Aconcagua is South America’s tallest mountain, while the Valdes Peninsula is the lowest point on the continent.  Ten percent of the land is arable. The population composition is white (mostly Spanish and Italian) 97%, mestizo, Amerindian, or other nonwhite groups 3%; and religion distribution is nominally Roman Catholic 92% (less than 20% practicing), Protestant 2%, Jewish 2%, other 4%; and Spanish as the native language with secondary as Italian and Germans.  The literacy rate is 97%.

 

2.1.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

38,740,807 (July 2003 est.)

White (mostly Spanish and Italian) 97%,

Mestizo, Amerindian, or other nonwhite groups 3%

Religion:

 

Nominally Roman Catholic 92% (less than 20% practicing)

 Protestant 2%

Jewish 2%

Other 4%

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 26.2% (male 5,185,548; female 4,955,551)
15-64 years: 63.4% (male 12,274,625; female 12,282,772)
65 years and over: 10.4% (male 1,659,641; female 2,382,670) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 97.1%
Male: 97.1%
Female: 97.1% (2003 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 16.16 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 14.08 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 18.14 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 75.48 years
Male: 71.72 years
Female: 79.44 years (2003 est.)

 

2.1.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 2,766,890 sq km
Land: 2,736,690 sq km

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 9.14%
Permanent crops: 0.8%

Commercial Zone:

N/A

 

Water Land:

Water: 30,200 sq km

Flooding Areas:

Pamperos are violent windstorms that can strike the Pampas and northeast; heavy flooding

Earthquake Areas:

San Miguel de Tucuman and Mendoza areas in the Andes subject to earthquake;

 

 

2.1.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The government is a Republic with bicameral Congress with 23 provinces, and one autonomous city-Buenos Aires. Independence was obtained from Spain 1816. The constitution was adopted in May 1853 and revised in August 1984. The legal system is a mixture of West European legal systems and US legal systems. Citizens above eighteen years can vote for local and federal officials.

Executive Branch:

The chief of state: President Nestor KIRCHNER (since 25 May 2003). * Note - declared winner of a runoff election by default after Carlos Saul MENEM withdrew his candidacy on the eve of the election, Vice President Daniel SCIOLI (since 25 May 2003); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government. The president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet. The president appoints the Cabinet.

Legislative Branch:

The bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of the Senate (72 seats; members are elected by direct vote; presently one-third of the members being 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)

Judicial Branch:

Supreme Court or Corte Suprema (the nine Supreme Court judges are appointed by the president with approval by the Senate).

 

2.1.4

ECONOMY:

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 recurring economic 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 inflation picked up rapidly, but by mid-2002 the economy had stabilized, albeit at a lower level. Strong demand for the peso compelled the Central Bank to intervene in foreign exchange markets to curb its appreciation in early 2003. Led by record exports, the economy began to recover with output up 5.5% in 2003, unemployment falling, and inflation sliced to 4.2% at year-end.  GDP- Purchasing power parity - $403.8 billion (2002 est.);

GDP:

Purchasing power parity - $403.8 billion (2002 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:

10.9% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita:

Purchasing power parity - $10,500 (2002 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 5%

Industry: 28%

 Services: 66% (2000 est.)

Population below poverty line:

37% (2001 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

41% (2002, yearend).

Labor force:

15, 36% of the population

Unemployment rate:

21.5%

Budget:

Revenues - $44 billion

 Expenditures- $48 billion -a net deficit of 4 billion

 

2.1.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$25.3 billion f.o.b. (2002)

Exports - commodities:

Edible oils

Fuels and energy

Cereals feed

Motor vehicles

Exports - partners:

Brazil 23.6%

US 10.9%

Chile 9.7%

Spain 4.3% (2002)

Imports:

$9 billion f.o.b. (2002)

Imports - commodities:

Machinery and equipment

Motor vehicles

Chemicals

Metal manufactures

Plastics

Imports - partners:

Brazil 42%

US 12.8%

Germany 4.4% (2002)

Debt - external:

$155 billion (2001 est.) 

 

Economic aid - recipient:

$10 billion (2001 est.)

Currency:

Argentine peso (ARS)

Currency code:

(ARS)

Exchange rates:

Argentine peso per US Dollar-3.06 (2002)

1 (2001)

1 (2000)

1 (1999)

1 (1998)

Fiscal year:

Calendar Year

 

2.1.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

7.5 million (1998)

Telephone - mobile cellular:

3 million (December 1999) 


 

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 telephone are installed and mobile telephone use is rapidly expanding


 International: 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) 

 

Television broadcast stations:

42 (plus 444 repeaters) (1997)

Internet country code:

. 27

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

33 (2000)

Internet users:

3.88 million (2001)

 

2.1.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

Total: 34,463 km (168 km electrified)

Broad gauge: 20,736 km 1.676-m gauge (142 km electrified)

Standard gauge: 3,115 km 1.435-m gauge (26 km electrified)

Narrow gauge: 10,375 km 1.000-m gauge; 237 km 0.750-m gauge (2002)

Highways:

Total: 215,471 km

Paved: 63,348 km (including 734 km of expressways)

Unpaved: 152,123 km (1999)

Waterways:

10,950 km

Pipelines:

Gas 26,797 km

Liquid petroleum gas 41 km

Oil 3,668 km

Refined products 2,945 km

Unknown (oil/water) 13 km (2003) 

Ports and harbors:

Bahia Blanca, Buenos Aires, Comodoro Rivadavia, Concepcion del Uruguay, La Plata, Mar del Plata, Necochea, Rio Gallegos, Rosario, Santa Fe, Ushuaia

Merchant marine:

Total: 23 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 141,851 GRT/208,821 DWT

Ships by type: cargo 9,

Petroleum tanker 8,

 Railcar carrier 1,

Refrigerated cargo 2,

Roll on/roll off 1,

Short-sea passenger 1,

Specialized tanker 1,

Includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: United Arab Emirates 1, Uruguay 1 (2002 est.) 

Airports:

1,342 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 145

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: 9 (2002)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 1,197

Over 3,047 m: 2

2,438 to 3,047 m: 2

1,524 to 2,437 m: 50

914 to 1,523 m: 572

Under 914 m: 571 (2002)

 

2.1.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

Argentine Army, Navy of the Argentine Republic (includes naval aviation and Marines), Coast Guard, Argentine Air Force, National Gendarmerie, National Aeronautical Police Force

Military manpower military age:

20 years of age (2003 est.) 

 

Military manpower availability:

Males age 15-49: 9,780,063 (2003 est.)


 

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 7,942,837 (2003 est.)

 

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

Males: 331,011 (2003 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$4.3 billion (FY99)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

1.3% (FY00)

 

2.1.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days. The Catholic Church in Argentina is part of the worldwide Catholic Church, under the spiritual leadership of the Pope and curia in Rome.

The Roman Catholic Church is the world's largest Christian Church, and its largest religious grouping. There are an estimated 33 Million baptized Catholics in Argentina, roughly 89% of the population.

 

2.1.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

Claims UK-administered Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands in its constitution, but in 1995 ceded the right to settle the dispute by force; Beagle Channel islands dispute resolved through Papal mediation in 1984, but armed incidents persist since 1992 oil discovery; 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 drug trafficking, and harbors Islamist militants; uncontested dispute between Brazil and Uruguay over Braziliera Island in the Quarai/Cuareim leaves the tri-point 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

 

2.2

BOLIVIA:

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 the 1980s, but leaders have faced difficult problems of deep-seated poverty, social unrest, and drug production. Current goals include attracting foreign investment, strengthening the educational system, resolving disputes with coca growers over Bolivia's counter drug efforts, continuing the privatization program, and waging an anticorruption campaign.

 

2.2.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

 

8,586,443 (July 2003 est.)

Quechua 30%,

Mestizo (mixed white and Amerindian ancestry) 30%,

Aymara 25%,

White 15%

Religion:

 

Roman Catholic 95%

Protestant (Evangelical Methodist)/Other 5%

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 37.1% (male 1,624,366; female 1,562,501)
15-64 years: 58.4% (male 2,452,892; female 2,561,873)
65 years and over: 4.5% (male 172,292; female 212,519) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 87.2%
Male: 93.1%
Female: 81.6% (2003 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 56.05 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 52.16 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 59.75 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 64.78 years
Male: 62.2 years
Female: 67.48 years (2003 est.)

 

2.2.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 1,098,580 sq km
 Land: 1,084,390 sq km

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 1.73%
Permanent crops: 0.21%

Commercial Zone:

N/A

 

Water Land:

Water: 14,190 sq km

Flooding Areas:

Flooding in the northeast section of the country (March-April)

 

Earthquake Areas:

No information reporting earthquake.

 

 

2.2.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The government is a Republic with bicameral Congress with 9 administrative divisions. Independence was obtained from Spain 1825. The constitution was adopted in February 1967 and revised in August 1984. The legal system is a mixture of Spanish Law and Napoleonic Code. Citizens above eighteen years can vote for local and federal officials only if they are married.  Citizens who are not married have to be twenty-one years of age or older.

Executive Branch:

Chief of state: President Carlos Diego MESA Gisbert (since 17 October 2003); Vice President (vacant); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

Head of government: President Carlos Diego MESA Gisbert (since 17 October 2003); Vice President (vacant); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

Cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president

Legislative Branch:

Bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of Chamber of Senators or Camara de Senadores (27 seats; members are directly elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) and Chamber of Deputies or Camara de Diputados (130 seats; members are directly elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms; note - some members are drawn from party lists, thus not directly elected)


Elections: Chamber of Senators and Chamber of Deputies - last held 30 June 2002 (next to be held NA June 2007)

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)

2.2.4

ECONOMY:

Economy Overview:

Bolivia, long one of the poorest and least developed Latin American countries, made considerable progress in the 1990s toward the development of a market-oriented economy. Successes under President SANCHEZ DE LOZADA (1993-97) included the signing of a free trade agreement with Mexico and becoming an associate member of the Southern Cone Common Market (Mercosur), as well as the privatization of the state airline, telephone company, railroad, electric power company, and oil company. Growth slowed in 1999, in part due to tight government budget policies, which limited needed appropriations for anti-poverty programs, and the fallout from the Asian financial crisis. In 2000, major civil disturbances held down growth to 2.5%. Bolivia's GDP failed to grow in 2001 due to the global slowdown and laggard domestic activity. Growth picked up slightly in 2002, but the first quarter of 2003 saw extensive civil riots and looting and loss of confidence in the government. Bolivia will remain highly dependent on foreign aid unless and until it can develop its substantial natural resources.

GDP:

Purchasing power parity - $21.15 billion (2002 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:

2.8% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita:

Purchasing power parity - $2,500 (2002 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 20%
Industry: 20%
Services: 60% (2002 est.)

Population below poverty line:

70% (1999 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

2% (2001 est.)

Labor force:

2.5 million

Unemployment Rate:

7.6%
note: widespread underemployment (2000)

Budget:

Revenues: $4 billion
Expenditures: $4 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2002 est.)

 

2.2.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$1.3 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Exports - commodities:

Soybeans

Natural gas

Zinc

Gold

 Wood (2000)

Exports - partners:

Brazil 24.3%

Switzerland 15.7%

US 14.1%

Venezuela 12.8%

Colombia 10.2%

Peru 5.4% (2002)

Imports:

$1.6 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities:

Capital goods

Raw materials and semi-manufactures

Chemicals

Petroleum

Food

Imports - partners:

Brazil 22%

Argentina 17.4%

US 15.6%

Chile 7%

Japan 5.5%

Peru 5.4%

China 4.8% (2002)

Debt - external:

$5.9 billion (2002 est.)

Economic aid - recipient:

$588 million (1997)

Currency:

Bolivian (BOB)

Currency code:

BOB

Exchange rates:

Bolivians per US dollar - 7.17 (2002)

6.61 (2001)

6.18 (2000)

5.81 (1999)

5.51 (1998)

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.2.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

327,600 (1996)

Telephone - mobile cellular:

116,000 (1997)

Telephone system:

General assessment: new subscribers face bureaucratic difficulties; most telephone 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: satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations:

AM 171

FM 73

Shortwave 77 (1999)

Television broadcast stations:

48 (1997)

Internet country code:

26

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

9 (2000)

Internet users:

78,000 (2000)

 

2.2.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

Total: 3,519 km
Narrow gauge: 3,519 km 1.000-m gauge (2002)

Highways:

Total: 53,790 km
Paved: 3,496 km (including 13 km of expressways)
Unpaved: 50,294 km (2000 est.)

Waterways:

10,000 km (commercially navigable)

Pipelines:

Gas 4,860 km

Liquid petroleum gas 47 km

Oil 2,460 km

Refined products 1,589 km

Unknown (oil/water) 247 km (2003)

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: 53 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 347,535 GRT/591,113 DWT
Ships by type: bulk 2

Cargo 25

Chemical tanker 4

Container 4

Livestock carrier 1

Petroleum tanker 12

Roll on/roll off 1

Short-sea passenger 3

Specialized tanker 1
Note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of Belize 2, China 2, Cuba 1, Cyprus 1, Egypt 1, Honduras 1, Latvia 2, Liberia 2, Panama 1, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 1, Saudi Arabia 1, Singapore 1, South Korea 3, Switzerland 1, Ukraine 1, UAE 5, US 1 (2002 est.)

Airports:

1,081 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 12
Over 3,047 m: 4
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
1,524 to 2,437 m: 5
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2002)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 1,069
Over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 3
1,524 to 2,437 m: 64
914 to 1,523 m: 225
Under 914 m: 776 (2002)

 

2.2.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

Army (Ejercito Boliviano), Navy (Fuerza Naval, includes Marines), Air Force (Fuerza Aerea Boliviana), National Police Force (Policia Nacional de Bolivia)

Military manpower - military age:

19 years of age (2003 est.)

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 2,118,908 (2003 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 1,380,883 (2003 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

Males: 96,003 (2003 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$147 million (FY99)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

1.8% (FY99)

 

2.2.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

 

2.2.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

Continues to press Chile and Peru to restore the Atacama corridor ceded to Chile in 1884; Chile demands water rights to Bolivia's Rio Lauca and Silala Spring

Illicit drugs:

World's third-largest cultivator of coca (after Colombia and Peru) with an estimated 24,400 hectares under cultivation in June 2002, a 23% increase from June 2001; intermediate coca products and cocaine exported to or through Colombia, Brazil, Argentina, and Chile to the US and other international drug markets; eradication and alternative crop programs under the SANCHEZ DE LOZADA administration have been unable to keep pace with farmers' attempts to increase cultivation after significant reductions in 1998 and 1999; money-laundering activity related to narcotics trade, especially along the borders with Brazil and Paraguay

 

2.3

BRITISH GUYANA:

British Guyana:

Background: Originally a Dutch colony in the 17th century, by 1815 Guyana had become a British possession. The abolition of slavery led to black settlement of urban areas and the importation of indentured servants from India to work the sugar plantations. This ethnocultural divide has persisted and has led to turbulent politics. Guyana achieved independence from the UK in 1966, but until the early 1990s mostly socialist-oriented governments ruled it. In 1992, Cheddi JAGAN was elected president, in what is considered the country's first free and fair election since independence. Upon his death five years later, his wife Janet, who resigned in 1999 due to poor health, succeeded him. Her successor, Bharrat JAGDEO, was reelected in 2001.

 

2.3.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

 

702,100

East Indian 50%,

 Black 36%,

Amerindian 7%,

White, Chinese, and mixed 7%

Religion:

 

Christian 50%,

Hindu 35%,

Muslim 10%,

Other 5%

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 27% (male 96,775; female 93,077)
15-64 years: 67.9% (male 240,305; female 236,378)
65 years and over: 5.1% (male 15,755; female 19,810) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over has ever attended school
Total population: 98.8%
Male: 99.1%
Female: 98.5% (2003 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 37.55 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 33.26 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 41.64 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 63.09 years
Male: 60.51 years
Female: 65.79 years (2003 est.)

 

2.3.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 214,970 sq km
 Land: 196,850 sq km

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 2.44%
Permanent crops: 0.08%

Commercial Zone:

 

N/A

 

 

Water Land:

Water: 18,120 sq km

Flooding Areas:

Flash floods are a constant threat during rainy seasons

 

Earthquake Areas:

No reports of earthquake in this country.

 

2.3.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The government is a republic within the commonwealth with a unicameral National Assembly with 10 regions.  Independence was obtained from the United Kingdom on May 26, 1966.  A constitution was adopted on October 6, 1980. The legal system is based on English common law with certain admixtures of Roman-Dutch law and has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction.  Citizens must be at least eighteen years of age to vote.  This is universal for the country.

Executive Branch:

Chief of state: President Bharrat JAGDEO (since 11 August 1999); note - assumed presidency after resignation of President JAGAN.


Head of government: Prime Minister Samuel HINDS (since NA December 1997)


Cabinet: Cabinet of Ministers appointed by the president, responsible to the legislature


Elections: President elected by the majority party in the National Assembly following legislative elections, which must be held at least every five years; elections last held 19 March 2001 (next to be held by March 2006); prime minister appointed by the president.

Legislative Branch:

Unicameral National Assembly (68 seats, 65 elected by popular vote, 1 elected Speaker of the National Assembly, and 2 nonvoting members appointed by the president; members serve five-year terms)

 
Elections: last held 19 March 2001 (next to be held NA March 2006)

Judicial Branch:

Supreme Court of Judicature; Judicial Court of Appeal; High Court

 

 

2.3.4

ECONOMY:

Economy Overview:

The Guyanese economy has exhibited moderate economic growth in 2001-02, based on expansion in the agricultural and mining sectors, a more favorable atmosphere for business initiatives, a more realistic exchange rate, fairly low inflation, and the continued support of international organizations. Chronic problems include a shortage of skilled labor and a deficient infrastructure. The government is juggling a sizable external debt against the urgent need for expanded public investment. The bauxite-mining sector should benefit in the near term by restructuring and partial privatization.

GDP:

Purchasing power parity - $2.628 billion (2002 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:

1.1% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita:

Purchasing power parity - $3,800 (2002 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 35%
Industry: 21%
Services: 44% (2002 est.)

Population below poverty line:

NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

4.7% (2002 est.)

Labor force:

418,000 (2001 est.)

Unemployment rate:

9.1% (understated) (2000)

Budget:

Revenues: $227 million
Expenditures: $235.2 million, including capital expenditures of $93.4 million (2000)

 

2.3.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$500 million f.o.b. (2002)

Exports - commodities:

Sugar

Gold

Bauxite/aluminum

Rice

Shrimp

Molasses

Rum

Timber

Exports - partners:

Canada 21.1%

US 17.9%

Netherlands Antilles 12.9%

UK 10.4%

Jamaica 5.3%

Portugal 4.2% (2002)

Imports:

$575 million c.i.f. (2002)

Imports - commodities:

Manufactures

Machinery

Petroleum

Food

Imports - partners:

US 23.7%

Netherlands Antilles 20.2%

Trinidad and Tobago 15.2%

Italy 6.3%

UK 5.1%

Cuba 4.2% (2002)

Debt - external:

$1.2 billion (2002)

 

Economic aid - recipient:

$84 million (1995), Heavily Indebted Poor Country Initiative (HIPC) $253 million (1997

Currency:

Guyanese dollar (GYD)

Currency code:

GYD

Exchange rates:

Guyanese dollars per US dollar - NA (2002)

187.32 (2001)

182.43 (2000)

178 (1999)

150.52 (1998)

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.3.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

70,000 (2000)

Telephone - mobile cellular:

6,100 (2000)


 

Telephone system:

General assessment: fair system for long-distance calling


Domestic: microwave radio relay network for trunk lines

 
International: tropospheric scatter to Trinidad; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations:

AM 3

FM 3

Shortwave 1 (1998)

 

Television broadcast stations:

3 (one public station; two private stations which relay US satellite services) (1997)

Internet country code:

49

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

3 (2000)

Internet users:

95,000 (2002)

2.3.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

Total: 187 km
Standard gauge: 139 km 1.435-m gauge
Narrow gauge: 48 km 0.914-m gauge
Note: all dedicated to ore transport (2001 est.)

Highways:

Total: 7,970 km
Paved: 590 km
Unpaved: 7,380 km (1999 est.)

Waterways:

5,900 km (total length of navigable waterways)
Note: Berbice, Demerara, and Essequibo rivers are navigable by oceangoing vessels for 150 km, 100 km, and 80 km, respectively

Pipelines:

NA%

Ports and harbors:

Bartica, Georgetown, Linden, New Amsterdam, Parika

Merchant marine:

 Bartica, Georgetown, Linden, New Amsterdam, Parika

 

Airports:

51 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 8
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
Under 914 m: 5 (2002)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 43
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 8
Under 914 m: 34 (2002)

 

2.3.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

Guyana Defense Force (including Ground Forces, Coast Guard, and Air Corps), Guyana Police Force, Guyana People's Militia, Guyana National Service

Military manpower - military age:

NA%

 

 

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 207,890 (2003 est.)


 

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 156,174 (2003 est.)

 

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

NA%

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$NA

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

$NA

 

2.3.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

 

2.3.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

All of the area west of the Essequibo (river) claimed by Venezuela; Suriname claims area between New (Upper Courantyne) and Courantyne/Kutari [Koetari] rivers (all headwaters of the Courantyne); territorial sea boundary with Suriname is in dispute.

Illicit drugs:

Transshipment point for narcotics from South America - primarily Venezuela - to Europe and the US; producer of cannabis

 

2.4

BRAZIL:

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 has overcome more than half a century of military intervention in the governance of the country to pursue industrial and agricultural growth and development of the interior. Exploiting vast natural resources and a large labor pool, Brazil is today South America's leading economic power and a regional leader. Highly unequal income distribution remains a pressing problem. 

 

2.4.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

 

182,032,604

White (includes Portuguese, German, Italian, Spanish, Polish) 55%

 Mixed white and black 38%

 Black 6%

Other (includes Japanese, Arab, Amerindian) 1%

Religion:

Roman Catholic (nominal) 80%

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 27.1% (male 25,151,855; female 24,196,506)
15-64 years: 67.2% (male 60,667,014; female 61,683,580)
65 years and over: 5.7% (male 4,232,784; female 6,100,865) (2003 est.).

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 86.4%
Male: 86.1%
Female: 86.6% (2003 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 31.74 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 27.68 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 35.61 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 71.13 years
Male: 67.16 years
Female: 75.3 years (2003 est.)

 

2.4.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 8,511,965 sq km
Land: 8,456,510 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

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 6.3%
Permanent crops: 1.42%

Commercial Zone:

N/A

 

Water Land:

Water: 55,455 sq km

Flooding Areas:

Recurring droughts in northeast; floods and occasional frost in south. No reports of flooding in Brazil.

Earthquake Areas:

No reported earthquake in Brazil

 

 

2.4.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The country is a federative republic with a Bicameral Congress with 26 states and I federal district.  Independence was obtained from Portugal on September 7, 1822.  A constitution was adopted on October 5, 1988.  The legal system is based on Roman Codes and has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction. Suffrage is voluntary between 16 and 18 years of age and over 70, compulsory over 18 and under 70 years of age.     

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.

 

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 NA October 2006); runoff election held 27 October 2002.

 

Cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president.

 

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

Legislative Branch:

Bicameral National Congress or Congresso Nacional consists of the Federal Senate or Senado Federal (81 seats; three members from each state or 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 NA October 2006 for one-third of the Senate); Chamber of Deputies - last held 6 October 2002 (next to be held NA October 2006)

Judicial Branch:

Supreme Federal Tribunal (11 ministers are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate); Higher Tribunal of Justice; Regional Federal Tribunals (judges are appointed for life)

 

2.4.4

ECONOMY:

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. The maintenance of large current account deficits via capital account surpluses became problematic as investors became more risk averse to emerging markets as a consequence of the Asian financial crisis in 1997 and the Russian bond default in August 1998. After crafting a fiscal adjustment program and pledging progress on structural reform, Brazil received a $41.5 billion IMF-led international support program in November 1998. In January 1999, the Brazilian Central Bank announced that the real would no longer be pegged to the US dollar. The consequent devaluation helped moderate the downturn in economic growth in 1999, and the country posted moderate GDP growth in 2000. Economic growth slowed considerably in 2001-03 - to less than 2% - because of a slowdown in major markets and the hiking of interest rates by the Central Bank to combat inflationary pressures. New president DA SILVA, who took office 1 January 2003, has given priority to reforming the complex tax code, trimming the overblown civil service pension system, and continuing the fight against inflation. 

GDP- purchasing power parity:

 $1.376 trillion (2002 est.) 
 

GDP - real growth rate:

1.5% (2002 est.) 

GDP - per capita:

Purchasing power parity - $7,600 (2002 est.) 
 

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 8%

Industry: 36%

Services: 56% (2001 est.) 

Population below poverty line:

22% (1998 est.) 
 

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

8.3% (2002)

Labor force:

79 million (1999 est.) 
 

Unemployment rate:

6.4% (2001 est.) 
 

Budget:

Revenues: $100.6 billion

Expenditures: $91.6 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000)

 

2.4.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$59.4 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.) 

Exports - commodities:

Transport equipment

Iron ore

Soybeans

Footwear

Coffee

Autos

Exports - partners:

US 23.8%

Argentina 8.5%

Germany 5%

China 4.3%

Netherlands 4.2% (2002)

Imports:

$46.2 billion f.o.b. (2002)

Imports - commodities:

Machinery

Electrical and transport equipment

Chemical products

Oil 

Imports - partners:

US 23.3%

Argentina 12.6%

Germany 8.7%

France 5.2% (2002)

Debt - external:

$222.4 billion (2002)
 

Economic aid - recipient:

$30 billion IMF disbursement (2002)
 

Currency:

Real (BRL)

Currency code:

BRL

Exchange rates:

Real per US dollar - 2.92 (2002), 2.36 (2001), 1.83 (2000), 1.81 (1999), 1.16 (1998)

Note: from October 1994 through 14 January 1999, the official rate was determined by a managed float; since 15 January 1999, the official rate floats independently with respect to the US dollar

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.4.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

17.039 million (1997)
 

Telephone - mobile cellular:

4.4 million (1997)
 

Telephone system:

General assessment: good working system

Domestic: extensive microwave radio relay system and a domestic satellite system with 64 earth stations

International: 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)

Television broadcast stations:

138 (1997) 
 

Internet country code:

27
 

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

50 (2000)
 

Internet users:

13.98 million (2002)

 

2.4.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

Total: 31,543 km (1,981 km electrified)

Broad gauge: 4,961 km 1.600-m gauge (692 km electrified)

Narrow gauge: 25,992 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) (2002)

Standard gauge: 194 km 1.440-m gauge (630 km electrified)

Highways:

Total: 1,724,929 km

Paved: 94,871 km

Unpaved: 1,630,058 km (2000)

Waterways:

50,000 km

Pipelines:

Condensate/gas 243 km

Gas 10,984 km

Liquid petroleum gas 341 km

Oil 5,113 km

Refined products 4,800 km (2003)

Ports and harbors:

Belem, Fortaleza, Ilheus, Imbituba, Manaus, Paranagua, Porto Alegre, Recife, Rio de Janeiro, Rio Grande, Salvador, Santos, Vitoria

Merchant marine:

Total: 159 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 3,256

186 GRT/5,101,578 DWT

Note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Chile 2, Germany 6,
Greece 1, Monaco 1 (2002 est.)

Ships by type: bulk 29

Cargo 23

Chemical tanker 7

Combination ore/oil 7

Container 12

Liquefied gas 11

Multi-functional large-load carrier 1

Passenger/cargo 5

Petroleum tanker 53

Roll on/roll off 10

Short-sea passenger 1

Airports:

3,590 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 665

Over 3,047 m: 7

2,438 to 3,047 m: 23

1,524 to 2,437 m: 155

914 to 1,523 m: 435

Under 914 m: 45 (2002)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 2,925

1,524 to 2,437 m: 70

914 to 1,523 m: 1,384

Under 914 m: 1,471 (2002)

 

2.4.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

Brazilian Army, Brazilian Navy (includes naval air and marines), Brazilian Air Force, Federal Police (paramilitary)

Military manpower - military age:

18 years of age (2003 est.) 
 

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 51,381,048 (2003 est.) 
 

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 34,347,078 (2003 est.) 
 

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

Males: 1,744,148 (2003 est.) 
 

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$13.408 billion (FY99)
 

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

1.9% (FY99)

 

2.4.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

 

2.4.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

Unruly region at convergence of Argentina-Brazil-Paraguay borders is locus of money laundering, smuggling, arms and drug trafficking, and harbors Islamist militants; uncontested dispute with Uruguay over certain islands in the Quarai/Cuareim and Invernada boundary streams and the resulting tri-point with Argentina

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 Colombian and Peruvian cocaine headed for the US and Europe; 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

 

 

2.5

CHILE:

Chile:

Background:  A three-year-old Marxist government 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, first implemented by the PINOCHET dictatorship, led to unprecedented growth in 1991-97 and have helped secure the country's commitment to democratic and representative government.

 

2.5.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

 

15,665,216 (July 2003 est.)

White and white-Amerindian 95%

Amerindian 3%

Other 2%

Religion:

 

Roman Catholic 89%

Protestant 11%

Jewish NEGL%

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 26.4% (male 2,112,251; female 2,018,099)
15-64 years: 66% (male 5,151,551; female 5,180,607)
65 years and over: 7.7% (male 499,441; female 703,267) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write

Total population: 96.2%
Male: 96.4%
Female: 96.1% (2003 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 8.88 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 8.04 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 9.68 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 76.35 years
Male: 73.04 years
Female: 79.82 years (2003 est.)

 

2.5.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 756,950 sq km
Land: 748,800 sq km
Note: includes Easter Island (Isla de Pascua) and Isla Sala y Gomez

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 2.65%

Permanent crops: 0.42%

Commercial Zone:

N/A

 

Water Land:

Water: 8,150 sq km

Flooding Areas:

No flooding reported for Chile.

Earthquake Areas:

Severe earthquake; active volcanism; tsunamis

 

 

2.5.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The government is a republic with a bicameral National Congress with 13 regions.  *Note:  one region claimed is in Antarctica and the US does not recognize this claim. The country obtained it independence from Spain on September 18, 1810.  The judicial system is 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 and 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. Citizens must be eighteen years of age to vote universally 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 NA December 2005)

Legislative Branch:

Bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of the Senate or Senado (49 seats, 38 elected by popular vote, 9 designated members, and 2 former presidents who serve six-year terms and are senators for life); elected members serve eight-year terms (one-half bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of the Senate or Senado (49 seats, 38 elected by popular vote, 9 designated members, and 2 former presidents who serve six-year terms and are senators 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 NA December 2005); Chamber of Deputies - last held 16 December 2001 (next to be held NA December 2005)

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

 

2.5.4

ECONOMY:

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 4.4% in 2000. Growth fell back to 2.8% in 2001 and 1.8% in 2002, largely due to lackluster global growth and the devaluation of the Argentine peso. Unemployment remains stubbornly high, putting pressure on President LAGOS to improve living standards. One bright spot was the signing of a free trade agreement with the US, which will take effect on 1 January 2004.

GDP-purchasing power parity:

$156.1 billion (2002 est.)
 

GDP - real growth rate:

2.1% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita:

Purchasing power parity - $10,100 (2002 est.)
 

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 11%
Industry: 34%
Services: 56% (2001)
 

Population below poverty line:

21% (1998 est.)
 

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

2.5% (2002 est.)
 

Labor force:

5.9 million (2000 est.)
 

Unemployment rate:

9.2% (2002)
 

Budget:

Revenues: $17 billion
Expenditures: $17 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2001 est.)

 

2.5.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$17.8 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Exports - commodities:

Copper

Fish

Fruits

Paper and pulp

Chemicals

Exports - partners:

US 19.1%

Japan 10.5%

China 6.7%

Mexico 5%

Italy 4.7%

UK 4.4% (2002)

Imports:

$15.6 billion f.o.b. (2002)

Imports - commodities:

Consumer goods

Chemicals

Motor vehicles

Fuels

Electrical machinery

Heavy industrial machinery

Food

Imports - partners:

Argentina 18%

US 14.9%

Brazil 9.5%

China 6.5%

Germany 4.3% (2002)

Debt - external:

$40.4 billion (2002)
 

Economic aid - recipient:

ODA, $40 million (2001 est.)
 

Currency:

Chilean peso (CLP)

Currency code:

CLP

Exchange rates:

Chilean pesos per US dollar - 688.95 (2002)

634.94 (2001)

535.47 (2000)

508.78 (1999)

460.29 (1998)

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.5.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

2.603 million (1998)
 

Telephone - mobile cellular:

944,225 (1998)
 

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: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)
 

Radio broadcast stations:

AM 180 (eight inactive)

FM 64

Shortwave 17 (one inactive) (1998)

Television broadcast stations:

63 (plus 121 repeaters) (1997)
 

Internet country code:

25
 

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

7 (2000)
 

Internet users:

3.1 million (2002)

 

2.5.7

TRANSPORTATION:

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 (2002)

Highways:

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 (2002)

Waterways:

725 km

Pipelines:

Gas 2,267 km

Gas/liquid petroleum gas 42 km

Liquid petroleum gas 531 km

Oil 983 km

Refined products 545 km (2003)

Ports and harbors:

Antofagasta, Arica, Chanaral, Coquimbo, Iquique, Puerto Montt, Punta Arenas, San Antonio, San Vicente, Talcahuano, Valparaiso

Merchant marine:

Total: 50 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 696,202 GRT/900,317 DWT
Ships by type: bulk 9

Cargo 6

Chemical tanker 9

Container 4

Liquefied gas 2

Passenger 4

Petroleum tanker 6

Roll on/roll off 6

Vehicle carrier 4
Note: includes a foreign-owned ship registered here as a flag of convenience: Netherlands 1 (2002 est.)

Airports:

363 (2002)

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 (2002)

Airports - with unpaved 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 (2002)

 

2.5.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

Army of the Nation, National Navy (including naval air, coast guard, and marines), Air Force of the Nation, Chilean Carabineros (National Police), Investigations Police

Military manpower - military age:

19 years of age (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 4,154,636 (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 3,070,140 (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

Males: 131,324 (2003 est.)
 

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$2.5 billion (FY99)
 

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

3.1% (FY99)
 

 

2.5.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

 

2.5.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

Bolivia continues to press Chile and Peru to restore the Atacama corridor ceded to Chile in 1884; dispute with Peru over the economic zone delimited by the maritime boundary; Chile demands water rights to Bolivia's Rio Lauca and Silala Spring; Beagle Channel islands dispute resolved through Papal mediation in 1984, but armed incidents persist since 1992 oil discovery; territorial claim in Antarctica (Chilean Antarctic Territory) partially overlaps Argentine and British claims

Illicit drugs:

A growing transshipment country for cocaine destined for the US and Europe; economic prosperity and increasing trade have made Chile more attractive to traffickers seeking to launder drug profits, especially through the Iquique Free Trade Zone; imported precursors passed on to Bolivia; domestic cocaine consumption is rising

 

2.6

COLOMBIA:

Colombia:

Background:  Colombia was one of the three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Colombia in 1830 (the others being 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 be several thousand strong in recent years, challenging the insurgents for control of territory and illicit industries such as the drug trade and the government's ability to exert its dominion over rural areas. While Bogotá steps up efforts to reassert government control throughout the country, neighboring countries worry about the violence spilling over their borders.

 

2.6.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

 

41,662,073 (July 2003 est.)

Mestizo 58%

White 20%

Mulatto 14%

Black 4%

Mixed black-Amerindian 3%

Amerindian 1%

Religion:

Roman Catholic 90%

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 31.3% (male 6,601,581; female 6,447,679)
15-64 years: 63.7% (male 12,931,093; female 13,626,333)
65 years and over: 4.9% (male 913,798; female 1,141,589) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 92.5%
Male: 92.4%
Female: 92.6% (2003 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 22.47 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 18.34 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 26.46 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 71.14 years
Male: 67.29 years
Female: 75.12 years (2003 est.)

 

2.6.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 1,138,910 sq km
Land: 1,038,700 sq km
Note: includes Isla de Malpelo, Roncador Cay, Serrana Bank, and Serranilla Bank

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 1.9%
Other: 96.14% (1998 est.)

Commercial Zone:

N/A

 

Water Land:

Water: 100,210 sq km

Flooding Areas:

No flooding reported in Colombia.

 

Earthquake Areas:

Highlands subject to volcanic eruptions; occasional earthquake; periodic droughts

 

 

2.6.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The government is a republic with a bicameral congress consisting of a Senate and a House of Representatives with 32 departments and one capital district. Colombia obtained its independence from Spain on July 10, 1810. A constitution was adopted on July 5, 1991. The judicial system is based on based on Spanish law; a new criminal code modeled after US procedures was enacted in 1992-93; judicial review of executive and legislative acts and accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations.  Citizens must be eighteen years of age to vote universally.

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 NA May 2006)

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 NA March 2006); House of Representatives - last held 10 March 2002 (next to be held NA March 2006)

Judicial Branch:

Four coequal, supreme judicial organs; Supreme Court of Justice or Corte Suprema de Justical (highest court of criminal law; judges are selected from the nominees of the Higher Council of Justice for eight-year terms); Council of State (highest court of administrative law, judges are selected from the nominees of the Higher Council of Justice 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); Higher Council of Justice (administers and disciplines the civilian judiciary; members of the disciplinary chamber resolve jurisdictional conflicts arising between other courts; members are elected by three sister courts and Congress for eight-year terms)

 

2.6.4

ECONOMY:

Economy Overview:

Colombia's economy suffers from weak domestic and foreign demand, austere government budgets, and serious internal armed conflict. Other economic problems facing the new president URIBE range from reforming the pension system to reducing high unemployment. Two of Colombia's leading exports, oil and coffee, face an uncertain future; new exploration is needed to offset declining oil production, while coffee harvests and prices are depressed. Colombian business leaders are calling for greater progress in solving the conflict with insurgent groups. On the positive side, several international financial institutions have praised the economic reforms introduced by President URIBE and have pledged enough funding to cover Colombia's debt servicing costs in 2003.

GDP- purchasing power parity:

$251.6 billion (2002 est.)
 

GDP - real growth rate:

1.5% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita:

$6,100 (2002 est.)
 

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 13%
Industry: 30%
Services: 57% (2001 est.)

Population below poverty line:

55% (2001)
 

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

6.2% (2002 est.)
 

Labor force:

18.3 million (1999 est.)

Unemployment rate:

Services 46%

Agriculture 30%

Industry 24% (1990)

Budget:

Revenues: $24 billion
Expenditures: $25.6 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2001 est.)

 

2.6.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$12.9 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Exports - commodities:

Petroleum

Coffee

Coal

Apparel

Bananas

Cut flowers

Exports - partners:

US 44.8%

Venezuela 9.4%

Ecuador 6.8% (2002)

Imports:

$12.5 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities:

Industrial equipment

Transportation equipment

Consumer goods

Chemicals

Paper products

Fuel

Electricity

Imports - partners:

US 32.6%

Venezuela 7%

Mexico 5.3%

Japan 5.3%

Brazil 5.2%

Germany 4.2% (2002)
 

Debt - external:

$38.4 billion (2002 est.)
 

Economic aid - recipient:

$NA
 

Currency:

Colombian peso (COP)
 

Currency code:

COP

Exchange rates:

Colombian pesos per US dollar - 2,504.24 (2002)

2,299.63 (2001)

2,087.9 (2000)

1,756.23 (1999)

1,426.04 (1998)

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.6.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

5,433,565 (December 1997)

Telephone - mobile cellular:

1,800,229 (December 1998)

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: 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)

Television broadcast stations:

60 (includes seven low-power stations) (1997)

Internet country code:

.co

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

18 (2000)

Internet users:

1.15 million (2002)

 

2.6.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

Total: 3,304 km
Standard gauge: 150 km 1.435-m gauge
Narrow gauge: 3,154 km 0.914-m gauge (2002)

Highways:

Total: 110,000 km
Paved: 26,000 km
Unpaved: 84,000 km (2000)

Waterways:

18,140 km (navigable by river boats) (April 1996)

Pipelines:

Gas 4,360 km

Oil 6,134 km

Refined products 3,140 km (2003)

Ports and harbors:

Bahia de Portete, Barranquilla, Buenaventura, Cartagena, Leticia, Puerto Bolivar, San Andres, Santa Marta, Tumaco, Turbo

Merchant marine:

Total: 15 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 51,445 GRT/55,930 DWT
Ships by type: bulk 5

Cargo 6

Container 1

Petroleum tanker 3
Note: includes a foreign-owned ship registered here as a flag of convenience: Germany 1 (2002 est.)

Airports:

1,050 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 96
Over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 9
914 to 1,523 m: 36
Under 914 m: 11 (2002)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 38

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 954
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 51
Under 914 m: 587 (2002)
914 to 1,523 m: 315

Heliports:

1 (2002)

 

2.6.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

Army (Ejercito Nacional), Navy (Armada Nacional, including Marines and Coast Guard), Air Force (Fuerza Aerea Colombiana), National Police (Policia Nacional)

Military manpower - military age:

18 years of age (2003 est.)

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 11,101,719 (2003 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 7,403,433 (2003 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

Males: 392,468 (2003 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$3.3 billion (FY01)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

3.4% (FY01)

 

2.6.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

 

2.6.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

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; maritime boundary dispute with Venezuela in the Gulf of Venezuela; Colombian drug activities penetrate Peruvian border area

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

 

2.7

ECUADOR:

Ecuador:

Background:  The "Republic of the Equator" was one of three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Colombia in 1830 (the others being Colombia and Venezuela). Between 1904 and 1942, Ecuador lost territories in a series of conflicts with its neighbors. A border war with Peru that flared in 1995 was resolved in 1999.

 

2.7.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

 

13,710,234 (July 2003 est.)

Mestizo (mixed Amerindian and white) 65%,

Amerindian 25%,

Spanish and others 7%,

Black 3%

Religion:

Roman Catholic 95%

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 34.9% (male 2,430,303; female 2,351,166)
15-64 years: 60.6% (male 4,116,289; female 4,198,667)
65 years and over: 4.5% (male 284,082; female 329,727) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 92.5%
Male: 94%
Female: 91% (2003 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 31.97 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 26.39 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 37.28 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 71.89 years
Male: 69.06 years
Female: 74.86 years (2003 est.)

 

2.7.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 283,560 sq km
Note: includes Galapagos Islands
Land: 276,840 sq km

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 5.69%
Permanent crops: 5.15%

Commercial Zone:

N/A

Water Land:

 

Water: 6,720 sq km

 

 

Flooding Areas:

 

Frequent earthquake, landslides, volcanic activity; floods; periodic droughts

 

 

Earthquake Areas:

Frequent earthquake, landslides, volcanic activity; floods; periodic droughts

 

 

2.7.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The government is a republic with a unicameral congress, consisting of 100 seats, with 22 provinces.  Ecuador gained its independence from Spain on May 24, 1882. Ecuador’s constitution was adopted on August 10, 1998.  The judicial system is based on the civil law system and has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction. Citizens eighteen years of age can vote universal, compulsory for literate persons ages 18-65, optional for other eligible voters.

Executive Branch:

Chief of state: President Lucio GUTIERREZ (since 15 January 2003); Vice President Alfredo PALACIO (since 15 January 2003); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

 
Elections: the president and vice president are elected on the same ticket by popular vote for four-year term (no reelection); election last held 20 October 2002; runoff election held 24 November 2002 (next to be held NA October 2006)


Head of government: President Lucio GUTIERREZ (since 15 January 2003); Vice President Alfredo PALACIO (since 15 January 2003); note - the president is both the chief

Legislative Branch:

Unicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional (100 seats; members are popularly elected by province to serve four-year terms)


Elections: last held 20 October 2002 (next to be held NA October 2006)

Judicial Branch:

Supreme Court or Corte Suprema (new justices are elected by the full Supreme Court)

 

2.7.4

ECONOMY:

Economy Overview:

Ecuador has substantial oil resources and rich agricultural areas. Because the country exports primary products such as oil, bananas, and shrimp, fluctuations in world market prices can have a substantial domestic impact. Ecuador joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 1996, but has failed to comply with many of its accession commitments. The aftermath of El Nino and depressed oil market of 1997-98 drove Ecuador's economy into a free-fall in 1999. The beginning of 1999 saw the banking sector collapse, which helped precipitate an unprecedented default on external loans later that year. Continued economic instability drove a 70% depreciation of the currency throughout 1999, which forced a desperate government to "dollarize" the currency regime in 2000. The move stabilized the currency, but did not stave off the ouster of the government. Gustavo NOBOA, who assumed the presidency in January 2000, has managed to pass substantial economic reforms and mend relations with international financial institutions. Ecuador completed its first standby agreement since 1986 when the IMF Board approved a 10 December 2001 disbursement of $96 million, the final installment of a $300 million standby credit agreement. In February 2003, newly installed president Lucio GUTIERREZ faced a budget gap and massive foreign debt. He has pledged to use oil revenues to pay off debt and is seeking additional IMF support.

GDP-purchasing power parity:

$42.65 billion (2002 est.)
 

GDP - real growth rate:

3.4% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita:

Purchasing power parity - $3,200 (2002 est.)
 

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 11%
industry: 33%
services: 56% (2001 est.)
 

Population below poverty line:

70% (2001 est.)
 

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

12.5% (2002 est.) 

Labor force:

3.7 million (urban)

Unemployment rate:

7.7%; note - widespread underemployment (2001 est.)
 

Budget:

Revenues: $5.6 billion
Expenditures: planned $5.6 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2001 est.)

2.7.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$4.9 billion (2002 est.)

Exports - commodities:

Petroleum

Bananas

Shrimp

Coffee

Cocoa

Cut flowers

Fish

Exports - partners:

US 39%

Colombia 5.6%

South Korea 5.1%

Germany 5%

Italy 4.4% (2002)

Imports:

$6 billion (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities:

Machinery and equipment

Chemicals

Raw materials

Fuels

Consumer goods

Imports - partners:

US 28.6%

Colombia 14.4%

Japan 6%

Chile 4.5%

Brazil 4.1% (2002)

Debt - external:

$14.4 billion (2002)
 

Economic aid - recipient:

$120 million (2001)
 

Currency:

US dollar (USD)

Currency code:

USD

Exchange rates:

Sucres per US dollar - 25,000 (2002)

25,000 (2001)

24,988.4 (2000)

11,786.8 (1999)

5,446.57 (1998)

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.7.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

1,115,272 (1999)
 

Telephone - mobile cellular:

384,000 (1999)
 

Telephone system:

General assessment: generally elementary but being expanded
Domestic: facilities generally inadequate and unreliable
International: satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations:

AM 392, FM 35, shortwave 29 (2001)
 

Television broadcast stations:

7 (plus 14 repeaters) (2001)
 

Internet country code:

32

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

31 (2001)
 

Internet users:

328,000 (2002)

 

2.7.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

Total: 966 km
Narrow gauge: 966 km 1.067-m gauge (2002)

Highways:

Total: 43,197 km

Paved: 8,164 km
Unpaved: 35,033 km (2000)

Waterways:

1,500 km
 

Pipelines:

Gas 71 km

Oil 1,575 km

Refined products 1,185 km (2003)

Ports and harbors:

Esmeraldas, Guayaquil, La Libertad, Manta, Puerto Bolivar, San Lorenzo
 

Merchant marine:

Total: 33 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 239,276 GRT/392,048 DWT
Note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Chile 1, Greece 1 (2002 est.)
Ships by type: cargo 2

Chemical tanker 3

Liquefied gas 1

Passenger 3

Petroleum tanker 23

Specialized tanker 1

Airports:

205 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 61
Over 3,047 m: 3
2,438 to 3,047 m: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 18
Under 914 m: 18 (2002)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 18

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 144
914 to 1,523 m: 31
Under 914 m: 113 (2002)

 

2.7.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

Army, Navy (including Marines), Air Force, National Police
 

Military manpower - military age:

20 years of age (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 3,555,068 (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 2,395,178 (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

Males: 137,433 (2003 est.)
 

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$720 million (FY98)
 

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

3.4% (FY98) 

 

2.7.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

 

2.7.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

None

Illicit drugs:

Significant transit country for cocaine originating in Colombia and Peru; importer of precursor chemicals used in production of illicit narcotics; dollarization may raise the volume of money-laundering activity, especially along the border with Colombia; increased activity on the northern frontier by trafficking groups and Colombian insurgents

 

2.8

FRENCH GUIANA:

French Guiana:

Background:  First settled by the French in 1604, French Guiana was the site of notorious penal settlements until 1951. The European Space Agency launches its communication satellites from Kourou.

 

2.8.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

 

186,917 (July 2003 est.)

Black or mulatto 66%

White 12%

East Indian

Chinese

Amerindian 12%

Other 10%

Religion:

Roman Catholic

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 29.9% (male 28,565; female 27,280)
15-64 years: 64.4% (male 64,836; female 55,498)
65 years and over: 5.7% (male 5,455; female 5,283) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 83%
Male: 84%
Female: 82% (1982 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 12.84 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 11.96 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 13.68 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 76.69 years
Male: 73.36 years
Female: 80.18 years (2003 est.)

 

2.8.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 91,000 sq km
Land: 89,150 sq km

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 0.11% NEGL
Permanent crops: 0.03%

Commercial Zone:

 

N/A

 

 

Water Land:

Water: 1,850 sq km

Flooding Areas:

High frequency of heavy showers and severe thunderstorms; flooding

 

Earthquake Areas:

No reports of earthquake in French Guiana

 

 

2.8.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The Government is still a department of France with no congress or administrative departments. French Guiana does not have an independence day.  It Adopted the French Constitution on September 28, 1958.  The Legal system is based on the French legal system and citizens must be eighteen years of age or older to vote.

Executive Branch:

Chief of state: President Jacques CHIRAC of France (since 17 May 1995), represented by Prefect Ange MANCINI (since 31 July 2002)


Elections: French president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; prefect appointed by the French president on the advice of the French Ministry of Interior; presidents of the General and Regional Councils are appointed by the members of those councils


Head of government: President of the General Council Joseph HO-TEN-YOU (since 26 March 2001); President of the Regional Council Antoine KARAM (since 22 March 1992)


Cabinet: NA

Legislative Branch:

Unicameral General Council or Conseil General (19 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve six-year terms) and a unicameral Regional Council or Conseil Regional (31 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve six-year terms)
elections: General Council - last held NA March 2000 (next to be held NA 2006); Regional Council - last held 15 March 1998 (next to be held NA 2004)


Election results: General Council - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PSG 5, various left-wing parties 5, independents 7, other 2; Regional Council - percent of vote by party - PS 28.28%, various left parties 22.56%, RPR 15.91%, independents 8.6%, Walwari Committee 6%; seats by party - PS 11, various left parties 9, RPR 6, independents 3, Walwari Committee 2
Note: one seat was elected to the French Senate on 27 September 1998 (next to be held NA September 2007); results - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - NA; 2 seats were elected to the French National Assembly on 9 June-16 June 2002 (next to be held NA 2007); results - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - UMP/RPR 1, Walwari Committee 1

Judicial Branch:

Court of Appeals or Cour d'Appel (highest local court based in Martinique with jurisdiction over Martinique, Guadeloupe, and French Guiana)

 

2.8.4

ECONOMY:

Economy Overview:

The economy is tied closely to the larger French economy through subsidies and imports. Besides the French space center at Kourou (which accounts for 25% of GDP), fishing and forestry are the most important economic activities. Forest and woodland cover 90% of the country. The large reserves of tropical hardwoods, not fully exploited, support an expanding sawmill industry that provides sawn logs for export. Cultivation of crops is limited to the coastal area, where the population is largely concentrated; rice and manioc are the major crops. French Guiana is heavily dependent on imports of food and energy. Unemployment is a serious problem, particularly among younger workers.

GDP:

Purchasing power parity - $2.26 billion (2002 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:

NA%

GDP - per capita:

Purchasing power parity - $14,400 (2000 est.)
 

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: NA%
Industry: NA%
Services: NA%

Population below poverty line:

NA%
 

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

1.5% (2002 est.)
 

Labor force:

58,800 (1997)

Unemployment rate:

22% (2001)
 

Budget:

Revenues: $225 million
Expenditures: $390 million, including capital expenditures of $105 million (1996)

 

2.8.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$155 million f.o.b.

Exports - commodities:

Shrimp

Timber

Gold

Rum

Rosewood essence

Clothing

Exports - partners:

France 62%

Switzerland 7%

US 2% (2001)

Imports:

$625 million c.i.f.

Imports - commodities:

Food (grains, processed meat)

Machinery and transport equipment

Fuels and chemicals

Imports - partners:

France 63%

US, Trinidad and Tobago, Italy (2002)

Debt - external:

$1.2 billion (1988)
 

Economic aid - recipient:

$NA
 

Currency:

Euro (EUR); French franc (FRF)

Currency code:

EUR; FRF

Exchange rates:

Euros per US dollar - 1.06 (2002)

1.12 (2001)

1.09 (2000)

0.94 (1999)

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.8.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

47,000 (1997)

Telephone - mobile cellular:

NA
 

Telephone system:

General assessment: NA
Domestic: fair open-wire and microwave radio relay system
International: satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean

Radio broadcast stations:

AM 2

FM 14 (including 6 repeaters)

Shortwave 6 (including 5 repeaters) (1998)

Television broadcast stations:

3 (plus eight low-power repeaters) (1997)
 

Internet country code:

43

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

2 (2000)
 

Internet users:

2,000 (2000)

 

2.8.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

0 km

Highways:

Total: 722 km
Paved: NA km
Unpaved: NA km (1996)

Waterways:

3,300 km navigable by native craft
Note: 460 km navigable by small oceangoing vessels and coastal and river steamers

Pipelines:

NA%

Ports and harbors:

Cayenne, Degrad des Cannes, Saint-Laurent du Maroni

Merchant marine:

None (2002 est.)

Airports:

11 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 4
Over 3,047 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 2
Under 914 m: 1 (2002

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 7
914 to 1,523 m: 2
Under 914 m: 5 (2002)

 

2.8.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

No regular indigenous military forces; French Forces, Gendarmerie
 

Military manpower - military age:

N/A
 

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 51,444 (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 33,345 (2003 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

 $NA

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$NA
 

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

$NA

*NOTE:

Defense of French Guiana is the responsibility of France.

 

2.8.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

 

2.8.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

Suriname claims area between Riviere Litani and Riviere Marouini (both headwaters of the Lawa)

Illicit drugs:

Small amount of marijuana grown for local consumption; minor transshipment point to Europe

 

2.9

PARAGUAY:

Paraguay:

Background:  In the disastrous War of the Triple Alliance (1865-70), Paraguay lost two-thirds of all adult males and much of its territory. It stagnated economically for the next half century. In the Chaco War of 1932-35, large, economically important areas were won from Bolivia. The 35-year military dictatorship of Alfredo STROESSNER was overthrown in 1989, and, despite a marked increase in political infighting in recent years, relatively free and regular presidential elections have been held since then.

 

2.9.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

6,036,900 (July 2003 est.)

Mestizo (mixed Spanish and Amerindian) 95%

Religion:

 

Roman Catholic 90%

Mennonite and other Protestant

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 38.4% (male 1,179,084; female 1,141,420)
15-64 years: 56.8% (male 1,721,867; female 1,707,918)
65 years and over: 4.7% (male 132,145; female 154,466) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 94%
Male: 94.9%
Female: 93% (2003 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 27.71 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 22.54 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 32.63 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 74.4 years
Male: 71.89 years
Female: 77.03 years (2003 est.)

 

2.9.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 406,750 sq km
Land: 397,300 sq km

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 5.54%
Permanent crops: 0.21%

Commercial Zone:

N/A

 

Water Land:

Water: 9,450 sq km

Flooding Areas:

Local flooding in southeast (early September to June); poorly drained plains may become boggy (early October to June)

Earthquake Areas:

No reports of earthquake in Paraguay.

 

2.9.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The country is a constitutional republic with a bicameral congress with seventeen departments and one capital city.  Independence was obtained for Spain on May 14 1811. A constitution was promulgated on June 20, 1992. The legal system is based on the Argentine codes, Roman law, and French codes and a judicial review of legislative acts in Supreme Court of Justice. Citizens eighteen years of age can vote universal and compulsory up to age 75

Executive Branch:

Chief of state: President Nicanor DUARTE FRUTOS (since 15 August 2003); Vice President Luis CASTIGLIONI (since 15 August 2003); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

 
Head of government: President Nicanor DUARTE FRUTOS (since 15 August 2003); Vice President Luis CASTIGLIONI (since 15 August 2003); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government


Cabinet: Council of Ministers nominated by the president


Elections: president and vice president elected on the same ticket by popular vote for five-year terms; election last held 27 April 2003 (next to be held NA April 2008)

Legislative Branch:

Bicameral Congress or Congreso consists of the Chamber of Senators or Camara de Senadores (45 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) and the Chamber of Deputies or Camara de Diputados (80 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)


Elections: Chamber of Senators - last held 27 April 2003 (next to be held NA May 2008); Chamber of Deputies - last held 27 April 2003 (next to be held NA May 2008)

Judicial Branch:

Supreme Court of Justice or Corte Suprema de Justicia (judges appointed on the proposal of the Counsel of Magistrates or Consejo de la Magistratura)

 

2.9.4

ECONOMY:

Economy Overview:

Paraguay has a market economy marked by a large informal sector. The informal sector features both re-export of imported consumer goods to neighboring countries as well as the activities of thousands of micro-enterprises and urban street vendors. Because of the importance of the informal sector, accurate economic measures are difficult to obtain. A large percentage of the population derives their living from agricultural activity, often on a subsistence basis. The formal economy grew by an average of about 3% annually in 1995-97; but GDP declined slightly in 1998, 1999, and 2000, rose slightly in 2001, only to fall again in 2002. On a per capita basis, real income has stagnated at 1980 levels. Most observers attribute Paraguay's poor economic performance to political uncertainty, corruption, and lack of progress on structural reform, substantial internal and external debt, and deficient infrastructure.

GDP- purchasing power parity:

$25.19 billion (2002 est.)
 

GDP - real growth rate:

-2.7% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita:

$4,300 (2002 est.)
 

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 27%
Industry: 27%
Services: 46% (2001 est.)

Population below poverty line:

36% (2001 est.)
 

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

36% (2001 est.)
 

Labor force:

2 million (2000 est.)

Unemployment rate:

18.2% (2002 est.)
 

Budget:

Revenues: $1.3 billion
Expenditures: $2 billion, including capital expenditures of $700 million (1999 est.)

 

2.9.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$2 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Exports - commodities:

Soybeans

Feed

Cotton

Meat

Edible oils

Electricity

Exports - partners:

Brazil 25.1%

Argentina 23%

Chile 5.5%

Bermuda 4% (2002)

Imports:

$2.4 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities:

Road vehicles

Consumer goods

Tobacco

Petroleum products

Electrical machinery

Imports - partners:

Brazil 32.7%

Argentina 22.7%

US 18.1%

Hong Kong 4.7% (2002)

Debt - external:

$3.2 billion (2002 est.)
 

Economic aid - recipient:

$NA
 

Currency:

Guarani (PYG)

Currency code:

PYG

Exchange rates:

Guarani per US dollar - 5,720.44 (2002)

4,105.92 (2001)

3,486.35 (2000)

3,119.07 (1999)

2,726.49 (1998)

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.9.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

290,475 (2001)
 

Telephone - mobile cellular:

510,000 (2001)
 

Telephone system:

General assessment: meager telephone service; principal switching center is Asuncion
Domestic: fair microwave radio relay network
International: satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations:

AM 46

FM 27

Shortwave 6 (three inactive) (1998)

Television broadcast stations:

4 (2001)
 

Internet country code:

79
 

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

4 (2000)
 

Internet users:

20,000 (2000)

 

2.9.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

Total: 441 km
Standard gauge: 441 km 1.435-m gauge (2002)

Highways:

Total: 29,500 km
Paved: 14,986 km
Unpaved: 14,514 km (1999 est.)

Waterways:

3,100 km
 

Pipelines:

NA
 

Ports and harbors:

Asuncion, Villeta, San Antonio, Encarnacion
 

Merchant marine:

Total: 21 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 32,475 GRT/36,101 DWT
Ships by type: cargo 14

Chemical tanker 1

Petroleum tanker 3

Roll on/roll off 3
Note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Argentina 2, Japan 1 (2002 est.) 

Airports:

879 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 11
Over 3,047 m: 3
1,524 to 2,437 m: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 4 (2002)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 868
1,524 to 2,437 m: 27
914 to 1,523 m: 323
Under 914 m: 518 (2002)

 

2.9.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

Army, Navy (includes Naval Air and Marines), Air Force
 

Military manpower - military age:

17 years of age (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 1,465,781 (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 1,465,781 (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

Males: 61,706 (2003 est.)
 

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$125 million (FY98)
 

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

1.4% (FY98)
 

 

2.9.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

2.9.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

Unruly region at convergence of Argentina-Brazil-Paraguay borders is locus of money laundering, smuggling, arms and drug trafficking, and harbors Islamist militants

Illicit drugs:

Major illicit producer of cannabis, most or all of which is consumed in South America; transshipment country for Andean cocaine headed for Brazil, other Southern Cone markets, Europe, and US; corruption and some money-laundering activity, especially in the Tri-Border Area

 

2.10

PERU:

Peru:

Background:  Ancient Peru was the seat of several prominent Andean civilizations, most notably that of the Incas whose empire was captured by the Spanish conquistadors in 1533. Peruvian independence was declared in 1821, and remaining Spanish forces defeated in 1824. After a dozen years of military rule, Peru returned to democratic leadership in 1980, but experienced economic problems and the growth of a violent insurgency. President Alberto FUJIMORI's election in 1990 ushered in a decade that saw a dramatic turnaround in the economy and significant progress in curtailing guerrilla activity. Nevertheless, the president's increasing reliance on authoritarian measures and an economic slump in the late 1990s generated mounting dissatisfaction with his regime. FUJIMORI won reelection to a third term in the spring of 2000, but international pressure and corruption scandals led to his ouster by Congress in November of that year. A caretaker government oversaw new elections in the spring of 2001, which ushered in Alejandro TOLEDO as the new head of government.

 

2.10.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

 

28,409,897 (July 2003 est.)

Amerindian 45%

Mestizo (mixed Amerindian and white) 37%

White 15%

Black, Japanese, Chinese, and other 3%

Religion:

Roman Catholic 90%

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 33.5% (male 4,828,531; female 4,678,008)
15-64 years: 61.5% (male 8,794,799; female 8,689,072)
65 years and over: 5% (male 652,375; female 767,112) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 90.9%
Male: 95.2%
Female: 86.8% (2003 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 36.97 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 31.66 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 42.04 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 70.88 years
Male: 68.45 years
Female: 73.43 years (2003 est.)

 

2.10.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 1,285,220 sq km
 Land: 1.28 million sq km

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 2.85%
Permanent crops: 0.38%

Commercial Zone:

N/A

 

Water Land:

 

Water: 5,220 sq km

 

Flooding Areas:

Tsunamis, flooding,

 

Earthquake Areas:

Earthquake, landslides, mild volcanic activity

 

 

2.10.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The government is a constitutional republic with a unicameral congress with 24 departments and one constitutional province. * NOTE: some reports indicate that the 24 departments and 1 constitutional province are now being referred to as regions; Peru is implementing a decentralization program whereby these 25 administrative divisions will begin to exercise greater governmental authority over their territories; in November 2002, voters chose their new regional presidents and other regional leaders; the authority that the regional government will exercise has not yet been clearly defined, but it will be devolved to the regions over the course of several years.   Independence from Spain was declared on July 28, 1821.  A constitution was adopted on December 31, 1993.  The legal system is based on a civil law system and has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction. Citizens must be eighteen years of age before they can vote.

Executive Branch:

Chief of state: President Alejandro TOLEDO Manrique (since 28 July 2001); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government; additionally two vice presidents are provided for by the constitution, First Vice President Raul DIEZ Canseco (since 28 July 2001) and Second Vice President David WAISMAN (since 28 July 2001)

 
Head of government: President Alejandro TOLEDO Manrique (since 28 July 2001); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government; additionally two vice presidents are provided for by the constitution, First Vice President Raul DIEZ Canseco (since 28 July 2001) and Second Vice President David WAISMAN (since 28 July 2001)


Note: Prime Minister Carlos FERRERO Costa (since 15 December 2003) does not exercise executive power; this power is in the hands of the president; note - Beatriz MERINO was asked to resign on 12 December 2003 and was replaced by Carlos FERRERO Costa three days later


Elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; special presidential and congressional elections held 8 April 2001, with runoff election held 3 June 2001; next to be held 9 April 2006

 

Cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president

Legislative Branch:

Unicameral Congress of the Republic of Peru or Congreso de la Republica del Peru (120 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)

 

Elections: last held 8 April 2001 (next to be held 9 April 2006)

Judicial Branch:

Supreme Court of Justice or Corte Suprema de Justicia (judges are appointed by the National Council of the Judiciary)

 

2.10.4

ECONOMY:

Economy Overview:

Thanks to foreign investment and the cooperation between the government and the IMF and World Bank, growth was strong in 1994-97 and inflation was brought under control. In 1998, El Nino's impact on agriculture, the financial crisis in Asia, and instability in Brazilian markets undercut growth. The following year was again lean year for Peru, with the aftermath of El Nino and the Asian financial crisis working its way through the economy. Political instability resulting from the presidential election and FUJIMORI's subsequent departure from office limited growth in 2000. The downturn in the global economy further curtailed growth in 2001. President TOLEDO, who assumed the presidency in July 2001, has been working to reinvigorate the economy and reduce unemployment. Economic growth in 2002 is estimated at 4.8%, led by construction in the retail and gas sectors.

GDP- purchasing power parity:

$138.8 billion (2002 est.)
 

GDP - real growth rate:

5.3% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita:

Purchasing power parity - $5,000 (2002 est.)
 

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 10%
Industry: 27%
Services: 63% (2001 est.)

Population below poverty line:

50% (2000 est.)
 

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

0.2% (2002 est.)
 

Labor force:

7.5 million (2000 est.)

Unemployment rate:

9.4%; widespread underemployment (2002 est.)

Budget:

Revenues: $10.4 billion
Expenditures: $10.4 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2002 est.)

 

2.10.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$7.6 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Exports - commodities:

Fish and fish products

Gold

Copper

Zinc

Crude petroleum and byproducts

Lead

Coffee

Sugar

Cotton

Exports - partners:

US 28.1%

China 10.5%

UK 7%

Switzerland 6.1%

Japan 5.6% (2002)

Imports:

$7.3 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities:

Machinery

Transport equipment

Foodstuffs

Petroleum

Iron and steel

Chemicals

Pharmaceuticals

Imports - partners:

US 26.1%

Chile 7.9%

Spain 5.1%

Colombia 5%

Brazil 4.7%

Venezuela 4.7%

Argentina 4.3% (2002)

Debt - external:

$29.2 billion (2002 est.)
 

Economic aid - recipient:

$895.1 million (1995)
 

Currency:

Nuevo sol (PEN)

Currency code:

PEN

Exchange rates:

Nuevo sol per US dollar - 3.52 (2002)

3.51 (2001)

3.49 (2000)

3.38 (1999)

2.93 (1998)
 

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.10.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

1.8 million (2000)
 

Telephone - mobile cellular:

504,995 (1998)
 

Telephone system:

General assessment: adequate for most requirements
Domestic: nationwide microwave radio relay system and a domestic satellite system with 12 earth stations
International: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); Pan American submarine cable
 

Radio broadcast stations:

AM 472

FM 198

Shortwave 189 (1999)

Television broadcast stations:

13 (plus 112 repeaters) (1997)
 

Internet country code:

73

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

10 (2000)
 

Internet users:

3 million (2002)

 

2.10.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

Total: 1,829 km
Standard gauge: 1,515 km 1.435-m gauge
Narrow gauge: 314 km 0.914-m gauge (2002)

Highways:

Total: 72,900 km
Paved: 9,331 km
Unpaved: 63,569 km (1999 est.)

Waterways:

8,808 km
note: 8,600 km of navigable tributaries of Amazon system and 208 km of Lago Titicaca

Pipelines:

Gas 388 km

Oil 1,557 km

Refined products 13 km (2003)

Ports and harbors:

Callao, Chimbote, Ilo, Matarani, Paita, Puerto Maldonado, Salaverry, San Martin, Talara, Iquitos, Pucallpa, Yurimaguas
Note: Iquitos, Pucallpa, and Yurimaguas are all on the upper reaches of the Amazon and its tributaries

Merchant marine:

Total: 5 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 29,470 GRT/45,451 DWT
Note: includes a foreign-owned ship registered here as a flag of convenience: US 1 (2002 est.)
Ships by type: cargo 4

Petroleum tanker 1

Airports:

233 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 49
Over 3,047 m: 5
2,438 to 3,047 m: 20
1,524 to 2,437 m: 13
914 to 1,523 m: 9
Under 914 m: 2 (2002)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 184
1,524 to 2,437 m: 23
914 to 1,523 m: 61
Under 914 m: 100 (2002)

 

2.10.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

Army (Ejercito Peruano), Navy (Marina de Guerra del Peru; includes Naval Air, Marines, and Coast Guard), Air Force (Fuerza Aerea del Peru; FAP), National Police (includes General Police, Security Police, and Technical Police)

Military manpower - military age:

17 years of age (2003 est.)

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 7,510,882 (2003 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 5,045,619 (2003 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

Males: 281,717 (2003 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$1 billion (FY01)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

1.8% (FY01)

 

2.10.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

 

2.10.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

Bolivia continues to press Chile and Peru to restore the Atacama corridor ceded to Chile in 1884.

Illicit drugs:

Until 1996 the world's largest coca leaf producer; emerging opium producer; cultivation of coca in Peru increased by 8% to 36,600 hectares between 2001 and the end of 2002; much of the cocaine base is shipped to neighboring Colombia for processing into cocaine, while finished cocaine is shipped out from Pacific ports to the international drug market; increasing amounts of base and finished cocaine, however, are being moved to Brazil and Bolivia for use in the Southern Cone or transshipped to Europe and Africa

 

2.11

SURINAME:

Suriname:

Background: Independence from the Netherlands was granted in 1975. Five years later the civilian government was replaced by a military regime that soon declared a socialist republic. It continued to rule through a succession of nominally civilian administrations until 1987, when international pressure finally forced a democratic election. In 1989, the military overthrew the civilian government, but a democratically elected government returned to power in 1991.  

 

2.11.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

 

435,449 (July 2003 est.)

Hindustani (also known locally as "East Indians"; their ancestors emigrated from northern India in the latter part of the 19th century) 37%

Creole (mixed white and black) 31%

Javanese 15%

 "Maroons" (their African ancestors were brought to the country in the 17th and 18th centuries as slaves and escaped to the interior) 10%

Amerindian 2%

Chinese 2%

White 1%

Other 2%

Religion:

 

Hindu 27.4%

Muslim 19.6%

Roman Catholic 22.8%

Protestant 25.2% (predominantly Moravian)

Indigenous beliefs 5%

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 30.7% (male 68,536; female 65,165)
15-64 years: 63.3% (male 141,048; female 134,699)
65 years and over: 6% (male 11,686; female 14,315) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 93%
Male: 95%
Female: 91% (1995 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 24.74 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 20.34 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 28.93 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 69.23 years
Male: 66.79 years
Female: 71.78 years (2003 est.)

 

2.11.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 163,270 sq km
Land: 161,470 sq km

Agricultural Land:

 

Arable land: 0.37%
Permanent crops: 0.06%
Note: there are 95,000 hectares of arable land, 7,000 hectares of permanent crops, and 15,000 hectares of permanent pastures (1998 est.)

Commercial Zone:

N/A

 

Water Land:

Water: 1,800 sq km

Flooding Areas:

 

NA

 

 

Earthquake Areas:

 

NA

 

 

 

2.11.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The country is a constitutional republic with a unicameral National Assembly with 10 districts.  Independence from the Netherlands was obtained on November 25, 1975.  A constitution was ratified on September 30 1987.  The legal system is based on the Dutch legal system incorporating French penal theory. Citizens eighteen years of age and older are eligible to vote.

Executive Branch:

Chief of state: President Runaldo Ronald VENETIAAN (since 12 August 2000); Vice President Jules Rattankoemar AJODHIA (since 12 August 2000); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government


Head of government: President Runaldo Ronald VENETIAAN (since 12 August 2000); Vice President Jules Rattankoemar AJODHIA (since 12 August 2000); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
cabinet: Cabinet of Ministers appointed by the president from among the members of the National Assembly


Elections: president and vice president elected by the National Assembly or, if no presidential or vice presidential candidate receives a constitutional majority in the National Assembly after two votes, by the larger People's Assembly (869 representatives from the national, local, and regional councils), for five-year terms; election last held 6 May 2000 (next to be held NA May 2005)


 Note: widespread demonstrations during the summer of 1999 led to the call for elections a year early

Legislative Branch:

Unicameral National Assembly or Nationale Assemblee (51 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
 
Note: widespread demonstrations during the summer of 1999 led to the call for elections a year early

 
Elections: last held 5 May 2000 (next to be held NA May 2005)

Judicial Branch:

Court of Justice (justices are nominated for life)

 

2.11.4

ECONOMY:

Economy Overview:

The economy is dominated by the bauxite industry, which accounts for more than 15% of GDP and 70% of export earnings. Suriname's economic prospects for the medium term will depend on renewed commitment to responsible monetary and fiscal policies and to the introduction of structural reforms to liberalize markets and promote competition. The government of Ronald VENETIAAN has begun an austerity program, raised taxes, and attempted to control spending. However, in 2002, President VENETIAAN agreed to a large pay raise for civil servants, which threatens his earlier gains in stabilizing the economy. The Dutch Government has agreed to restart the aid flow, which will allow Suriname to access international development financing. The short-term economic outlook depends on the government's ability to control inflation and on the development of projects in the bauxite and gold mining sectors.

GDP purchasing power parity:

$1.469 billion (2002 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:

1.2% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita:

Purchasing power parity - $3,400 (2002 est.)
 

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 13%
Industry: 22%
Services: 65% (2001 est.)

Population below poverty line:

70% (2002 est.)
 

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

17% (2002 est.)
 

Labor force:

100,000
 

Unemployment rate:

17% (2000)
 

Budget:

Revenues: $393 million
Expenditures: $403 million, including capital expenditures of $34 million (1997 est.)

 

2.11.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$445 million f.o.b. (2002)

Exports - commodities:

Alumina

Crude oil

Lumber

Shrimp and fish

Rice

Bananas

Exports - partners:

US 25.3%

Norway 20.4%

France 8.2%

Trinidad and Tobago 6.4%

Iceland 6%

Canada 5.9%

Netherlands 5.6% (2002)

Imports:

$300 million f.o.b. (2002)

Imports - commodities:

Capital equipment

Petroleum

Foodstuffs

Cotton

Consumer goods

Imports - partners:

US 22.2%

Netherlands 15.6%

China 11.9%

Trinidad and Tobago 11.2%

France 7.5%

Netherlands Antilles 7.2%

Japan 5.7% (2002)

Debt - external:

$321 million (2002 est.)
 

Economic aid - recipient:

Netherlands provided $37 million for project and program assistance, European Development Fund $4 million, Belgium $2 million (1998)
 

Currency:

Surinamese guilder (SRG)
 

Currency code:

SRG

Exchange rates:

Surinamese guilders per US dollar - 2,346.75 (2002)

2,178.5 (2001)

1,322.47 (2000)

859.44 (1999)

401 (1998)
Note: during 1998, the exchange rate splintered into four distinct rates; in January 1999 the government floated the guilder, but subsequently fixed it when the black-market rate plunged; the government currently allows trading within a band of SRG 500 around the official rate

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.11.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

64,000 (1997)
 

Telephone - mobile cellular:

4,090 (1997)
 

Telephone system:

General assessment: international facilities are good
Domestic: microwave radio relay network
International: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations:

AM 4

FM 13

Shortwave 1 (1998)

Television broadcast stations:

3 (plus seven repeaters) (2000)
 

Internet country code:

77
 

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

2 (2000)
 

Internet users:

14,500 (2002)

 

2.11.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

Total: 166 km (single-track)
Standard gauge: 80 km 1.435-m gauge
Note: Suriname railroads are not in operation (2001)
Narrow gauge: 86 km 1.000-m gauge

Highways:

Total: 4,492 km
Paved: 1,168 km
Unpaved: 3,324 km (2000)

Waterways:

1,200 km
Note: most important means of transport; oceangoing vessels with drafts ranging up to 7 m can navigate many of the principal waterways

Pipelines:

Oil 51 km (2003)

Ports and harbors:

Albina, Moengo, New Nikkei, Paramaribo, Paranam, Wageningen

Merchant marine:

Total: 2 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 2,421 GRT/2,990 DWT
ships by type: cargo 1

Container 1 (2002 est.)

Airports:

46 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 5
Over 3,047 m: 1
Under 914 m: 4 (2002)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 41
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 5
Under 914 m: 35 (2002)

 

2.11.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

National Army (including small Navy and Air Force elements), Civil Police

Military manpower - military age:

Males age 15-49: 123,159 (2003 est.)

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 72,039 (2003 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:

 NA%

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

NA%

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$NA

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

1.6% (FY97 est.)

 

2.11.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

 

2.11.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

Area disputed by French Guiana between Riviere Litani and Riviere Marouini (both headwaters of the Lawa); area disputed by Guyana between New (Upper Courantyne) and Courantyne/Koetari [Kutari] rivers (all headwaters of the Courantyne); territorial sea boundary with Guyana is in dispute. Suriname is believed to house Al-Queda terrorist cells at the present time and also believed to condone terrorism.
 

Illicit drugs:

Growing transshipment point for South American drugs destined for Europe and Brazil; transshipment point for arms-for-drugs dealing

 

 

 

 

 

2.12

URUGUAY:

Uruguay:

Background: A violent Marxist urban guerrilla movement, the Tupamaros, launched in the late 1960s, led Uruguay's president to agree to military control of his administration in 1973. By yearend, the rebels had been crushed, but the military continued to expand its hold throughout the government. Civilian rule was not restored until 1985. Uruguay's political and labor conditions are among the freest on the continent.  

 

2.12.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

 

3,413,329 (July 2003 est.)

White 88%

Mestizo 8%

Black 4%

Amerindian, practically nonexistent

Religion:

 

Roman Catholic 66% (less than half of the adult population attends church regularly)

Protestant 2%

Jewish 1%

Nonprofessing or other 31%

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 24.3% (male 425,642; female 404,987)
15-64 years: 62.6% (male 1,057,187; female 1,079,549)
65 years and over: 13.1% (male 182,696; female 263,268) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 98%
Male: 97.6%
Female: 98.4% (2003 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 13.8 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 11.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 15.61 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 75.87 years
Male: 72.54 years
Female: 79.38 years (2003 est.)

 

2.12.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 176,220 sq km
Land: 173,620 sq km

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 7.21%
permanent crops: 0.27%

Commercial Zone:

N/A

Water Land:

Water: 2,600 sq km

Flooding Areas:

 

Seasonally high winds (the pampero is a chilly and occasional violent wind which blows north from the Argentine pampas), droughts, floods; because of the absence of mountains, which act as weather barriers, all locations are particularly vulnerable to rapid changes from weather fronts.

Earthquake Areas:

No earthquake reported in Uruguay.

 

 

2.12.3

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The country is a constitutional republic with a bicameral General Assembly with 19 departments. Independence was obtained from Brazil on August 25, 1825. A constitution was adopted on November 27, 1966, and did not take effect until February 1967.  It then was suspended June 27, 1973. A new constitution was rejected by referendum on November 30, 1980, since then two constitutional reforms have been approved by plebiscite November 26, 1989 and January 27, 1997.  The legal system is based on Spanish civil law system and accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction.  Citizen must be of eighteen years or older in order to vote.

Executive Branch:

Chief of state: President Jorge BATLLE Ibanez (since 1 March 2000) and Vice President Luis HIERRO (since 1 March 2000); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government


Head of government: President Jorge BATLLE Ibanez (since 1 March 2000) and Vice President Luis HIERRO (since 1 March 2000); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government


Cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president with parliamentary approval
elections: president and vice president elected on the same ticket by popular vote for five-year terms; election last held 31 October 1999, with runoff election on 28 November 1999 (next to be held NA 2004)

Legislative Branch:

Bicameral General Assembly or Asamblea General consists of Chamber of Senators or Camara de Senadores (30 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) and Chamber of Representatives or Camara de Representantes (99 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections: Chamber of Senators - last held 31 October 1999 (next to be held NA 2004); Chamber of Representatives - last held 31 October 1999 (next to be held NA 2004)
election results: Chamber of Senators - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - Encuentro Progresista 12, Colorado Party 10, Blanco 7, New Sector/Space Coalition 1; Chamber of Representatives - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - Encuentro Progresista 40, Colorado Party 33, Blanco 22, New Sector/Space Coalition 4

Judicial Branch:

Supreme Court (judges are nominated by the president and elected for 10-year terms by the General Assembly)

 

2.12.4

ECONOMY:

Economy Overview:

Uruguay's economy is characterized by an export-oriented agricultural sector, a well-educated workforce, and high levels of social spending. After averaging growth of 5% annually during 1996-98, in 1999-2002 the economy suffered a major downturn, stemming largely from lower demand in Argentina and Brazil, which together account for nearly half of Uruguay's exports. Total GDP in these four years dropped by nearly 20%, with 2002 the worst year. Unemployment rose to nearly 20% in 2002, inflation surged, and the burden of external debt doubled. Cooperation with the IMF and the US has limited the damage, which is still extensive. Moves to reschedule debt and promote economic recovery may help limit a further decline in output in 2003.

GDP- purchasing power parity:

$26.82 billion (2002 est.)
 

GDP - real growth rate:

-10.8% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita:

Purchasing power parity - $7,900 (2002 est.)
 

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 6%
Industry: 27%
Services: 67% (2001)

Population below poverty line:

6% (1997)
 

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

14.1% (2002 est.)
 

Labor force:

1.2 million (2001)
 

Unemployment rate:

19.4% (2002)
 

Budget:

Revenues: $3.7 billion

 

2.12.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$2.1 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Exports - commodities:

Meat

Rice

Leather products

Wool

Vehicles

Dairy products

Exports - partners:

Brazil 21%

Argentina 15%

US 8.1%

Germany 5.1%

Italy 4% (2002)

Imports:

$1.87 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)

Imports - commodities:

Machinery

Chemicals

Road vehicles

Crude petroleum

Imports - partners:

Argentina 25.6%

Brazil 22.7%

US 7.7%

Venezuela 6.2% (2002)

Debt - external:

$11.8 billion (2002 est.)
 

Economic aid - recipient:

$NA
 

Currency:

Uruguayan peso (UYU)
 

Currency code:

UYU

Exchange rates:

Uruguayan pesos per US dollar - 21.26 (2002)

13.32 (2001)

12.1 (2000)

11.34 (1999)

10.47 (1998)

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.12.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

929,141 (2001)
 

Telephone - mobile cellular:

350,000 (2001)
 

Telephone system:

General assessment: fully digitalized
Domestic: most modern facilities concentrated in Montevideo; new nationwide microwave radio relay network
International: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2002)

Radio broadcast stations:

AM 91

FM 149

Shortwave 7 (2001)

Television broadcast stations:

20 (2001)
 

Internet country code:

89
 

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

14 (2001)
 

Internet users:

400,000 (2002)

 

2.12.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

Total: 2,073 km
Standard gauge: 2,073 km 1.435-m gauge
Note: 461 km have been taken out of service and 460 km are in partial use (2002)

Highways:

Total: 8,983 km
Paved: 8,081 km
Unpaved: 902 km (1999 est.)

Waterways:

1,600 km (used by coastal and shallow-draft river craft)

Pipelines:

Gas 192 km (2003)

Ports and harbors:

Colonia, Fray Bentos, Juan La Caze, La Paloma, Montevideo, Nueva Palmira, Paysandu, Punta del Este, Piriapolis

Merchant marine:

Total: 4 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 10,918 GRT/9,775 DWT
Note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Argentina 4, Greece 1 (2002 est.)
Ships by type: chemical tanker 1

Container 1

Petroleum tanker 1

Roll on/roll off 1

Airports:

64 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 15
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 5
914 to 1,523 m: 7
Under 914 m: 2 (2002)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 49
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 16
Under 914 m: 31 (2002)

 

2.12.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

Army, Navy (including Naval Air Arm, Coast Guard, Marines), Air Force, Police (Coracero Guard, Grenadier Guard)
 

Military manpower - military age:

NA%
 

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 831,297 (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 672,030 (2003 est.)
 

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

NA%
 

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$250 million (1999)
 

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

1.1% (2000)
 

 

2.12.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church and Catholic Church Influence:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

 

2.12.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

Uncontested dispute with Brazil over certain islands in the Quarai/Cuareim and Invernada streams and the resulting tri-point with Argentina

Illicit drugs:

None Reported

 

2.13

VENEZUELA:

Venezuela:

Background:  Venezuela was one of three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Colombia in 1830 (the others being Colombia and Ecuador). For most of the first half of the 20th century, Venezuela was ruled by generally benevolent military strongmen, who promoted the oil industry and allowed for some social reforms. Democratically elected governments have held sway since 1959. Current concerns include: an embattled president who is losing his once solid support among Venezuelans, a divided military, drug-related conflicts along the Colombian border, increasing internal drug consumption, over dependence on the petroleum industry with its price fluctuations, and irresponsible mining operations that are endangering the rain forest and indigenous peoples.

 

2.13.1

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Population distribution by race:

 

24,654,694 (July 2003 est.)

Spanish

Italian

Portuguese

Arab

German

African

Indigenous people

Note: Percentages are not available

Religion:

 

Nominally Roman Catholic 96%

Protestant 2%

Other 2%

Age Groups:

 

0-14 years: 31% (male 3,944,749; female 3,700,799)
15-64 years: 64.1% (male 7,931,194; female 7,864,697)
65 years and over: 4.9% (male 552,291; female 660,964) (2003 est.)

Literacy Rate:

 

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 93.4%
Male: 93.8%
Female: 93.1% (2003 est.)

Mortality Rate:

 

Total: 23.79 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 20.28 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Male: 27.05 deaths/1,000 live births

Longevity:

 

Total population: 73.81 years
Male: 70.78 years
Female: 77.07 years (2003 est.)

 

2.13.2

GEOGRAPHY:

Land Area:

 

Total: 912,050 sq km
Land: 882,050 sq km

Agricultural Land:

Arable land: 2.99%
Permanent crops: 0.96%

Commercial Zone:

N/A

 

Water Land:

Water: 30,000 sq km

Flooding Areas:

Subject to floods, rockslides, mudslides; periodic droughts

 

Earthquake Areas:

No earthquake reported in Venezuela. 

 

 

2.13.4

GOVERNMENT:

Government:

The government is a federal republic with a unicameral National Assembly with twenty-three states and one federal district.  Venezuela gained its independence from Spain on July 5, 1811.  A constitution was adopted December 30, 1999. The legal system is based on organic laws as of July 1999 with an open, adversarial court system and has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction. Citizens eighteen years of age and older are eligible to vote.

Executive Branch:

Chief of state: President Hugo CHAVEZ Frias (since 3 February 1999); Vice President Jose Vicente RANGEL (since 28 April 2002); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government


Head of government: President Hugo CHAVEZ Frias (since 3 February 1999); Vice President Jose Vicente RANGEL (since 28 April 2002); 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 six-year term; election last held 30 July 2000 (next to be held NA 2006)

Legislative Branch:

Unicameral National Assembly or Asamblea Nacional (165 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms; three seats reserved for the indigenous peoples of Venezuela)


Elections: last held 30 July 2000 (next to be held NA 2005)

Judicial Branch:

Supreme Tribunal of Justice or Tribuna Suprema de Justicia (magistrates are elected by the National Assembly for a single 12-year term)

 

2.13.4

ECONOMY:

Economy Overview:

Venezuela continues to be highly dependent on the petroleum sector, which accounts for roughly one-third of GDP, around 80% of export earnings, and more than half of government operating revenues. Despite higher oil prices at the end of 2002 and into 2003, domestic political instability, culminating in a two-month national oil strike from December 2002 to February 2003, temporarily halted economic activity. The economy is likely to remain in a recession in 2003, after sinking an estimated 8.9 percent in 2002.

GDP- purchasing power parity:

$131.7 billion (2002 est.)
 

GDP - real growth rate:

-8.9% (2002 est.)

GDP - per capita:

Purchasing power parity - $5,400 (2002 est.)
 

GDP - composition by sector:

Agriculture: 5%
Industry: 50%
Services: 45% (2001)

Population below poverty line:

47% (1998 est.)
 

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

31.2% (2002 est.)
 

Labor force:

9.9 million (1999)
 

Unemployment rate:

17% (2002 est.)
 

Budget:

Revenues: $21.5 billion
Expenditures: $27 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000 est.)

2.13.5

EXPORTS AND IMPORTS:

Exports:

$28.6 billion f.o.b. (2001)

Exports - commodities:

Petroleum

Bauxite and aluminum

Steel

Chemicals

Agricultural products

Basic manufactures

Exports - partners:

US 53.4%

Netherlands Antilles 17.3%

Canada 2.9% (2002)

Imports:

$18.8 billion f.o.b. (2001)

Imports - commodities:

Raw materials

Machinery and equipment

Transport equipment

Construction materials

Imports - partners:

US 27.5%

Colombia 6.9%

Brazil 5.7%

Mexico 4.4% (2002)

Debt - external:

$38.2 billion (2000)
 

Economic aid - recipient:

$74 million (2000)
 

Currency:

Bolivar (VEB)

Currency code:

VEB

Exchange rates:

Bolivares per US dollar - 1,160.44 (2002)

723.67 (2001)

679.96 (2000)

605.72 (1999)

547.56 (1998)

Fiscal year:

Calendar year

 

2.13.6

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephone - main lines in use:

2.6 million (however, 3,500,000 have been installed) (1998)

Telephone - mobile cellular:

2 million (1998)

Telephone system:

General assessment: modern and expanding

 
Domestic: domestic satellite system with 3 earth stations; recent substantial improvement in telephone service in rural areas; substantial increase in digitalization of exchanges and trunk lines; installation of a national interurban fiber-optic network capable of digital multimedia services


International: 3 submarine coaxial cables; satellite earth stations - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) and 1 PanAmSat; participating with Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia in the construction of an international fiber-optic network

Radio broadcast stations:

AM 201

FM NA (20 in Caracas)

Shortwave 11 (1998)

Television broadcast stations:

66 (plus 45 repeaters) (1997)

Internet country code:

83

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):

16 (2000)

Internet users:

1.3 million (2002)

 

2.13.7

TRANSPORTATION:

Railways:

Total: 682 km
Standard gauge: 682 km 1.435-m gauge (2002)

Highways:

Total: 96,155 km
Paved: 32,308 km
Unpaved: 63,847 km (1999 est.)

Waterways:

7,100 km
Note: Rio Orinoco and Lago de Maracaibo accept oceangoing vessels

Pipelines:

Extra heavy crude 992 km

Gas 5,262 km

Oil 7,484 km

Refined products 1,681 km

Unknown (oil/water) 141 km (2003)

Ports and harbors:

Amory, Bajo Grande, El Tablazo, La Guaira, La Salina, Maracaibo, Matanzas, Palua, Puerto Cabello, Puerto la Cruz, Puerto Ordaz, Puerto Sucre, Punta Cardon

Merchant marine:

Total: 47 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 714,073 GRT/1,256,667 DWT
Note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Denmark 1, Greece 1, Italy 1, UK 1, US 2 (2002 est.)
Ships by type: bulk 6

Cargo 8

Chemical tanker 1

Container 1

Liquefied gas 4

Passenger/cargo 1

Petroleum tanker 15

Roll on/roll off 10

Short-sea passenger 1

Airports:

373 (2002)

Airports - with paved runways:

Total: 127
Over 3,047 m: 5
2,438 to 3,047 m: 11
914 to 1,523 m: 61
Under 914 m: 18 (2002)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 32

Airports - with unpaved runways:

Total: 246
1,524 to 2,437 m: 10
914 to 1,523 m: 97
Under 914 m: 139 (2002)

 

2.13.8

MILITARY:

Military branches:

National Armed Forces (Fuerzas Armadas Nacionales or FAN) includes Ground Forces or Army (Fuerzas Terrestres or Ejercito), Naval Forces (Fuerzas Navales or Armada - including marines and Coast Guard), Air Force (Fuerzas Aereas or Aviacion), Armed Forces of Cooperation or National Guard (Fuerzas Armadas de Cooperacion or Guardia Nacional)

Military manpower - military age:

18 years of age (2003 est.)

Military manpower - availability:

Males age 15-49: 6,767,862 (2003 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:

Males age 15-49: 4,870,751 (2003 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:

Males: 249,319 (2003 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure:

$934 million (FY99)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:

0.9% (FY99)

 

2.13.9

CULTURAL ASPECTS:

Link to Spanish Culture and Catholic Church:

The Spanish influenced South America in many ways. It brought with it new customs, a new language and a new religion. The Catholic Church brought profound changes to South America. The Catholic Church ended human sacrifice and cannibalism and replaced human sacrifice with the consumption of the host (body and blood of Christ).  Christian ideas replaced native ideas in art through the Church, but the native style was retained.  Cathedrals were built on the sites of the old native worshiping ground and saints replaced the native deities.  Polytheistic religion of aboriginal peoples was replaced by the monotheistic religion of the Spanish.  Rituals and dances associated with previously existing gods were reapplied to the Christian saints and locals became servants of the Spanish king and members of the Church’s “flock”.

Spain attempted to crush the spirit of the reformation and resisted reforms of the Counter Reformation as while the Church kept its crusading spirit visible in Latin America.  Franciscan and Jesuit missions created a machine for the propagation of the faith, the schools.  The Church took over many functions that belong to the state in the modern world, such as education, banking, hospitals, public charity, customs and application and enforcement of immigration laws, which were designed to exclude Jews and Lutherans.

The Inquisition became a reign of terror in the Americas and intellectual movements were quashed.  The Church saw the expression of aboriginal culture as the work of the devil, idols were destroyed and especially the Franciscans razed temples.  Native manuscripts were destroyed, but book burning was not unusual in those days.

 

2.13.10

MAJOR ISSUES AND DISPUTES:

Disputes - international:

Claims all of Guyana west of the Essequibo River; maritime boundary dispute with Colombia in the Gulf of Venezuela and the Caribbean Sea; US, France and the Netherlands recognize Venezuela's claim to give full effect to Aves Island, which creates a Venezuelan EEZ/continental shelf extending over a large portion of the Caribbean Sea; Dominica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines protest the claim and other states' recognition of it

Illicit drugs:

Small-scale illicit producer of opium and coca for the processing of opiates and coca derivatives; however, large quantities of cocaine, heroin, and marijuana transit the country from Colombia bound for US and Europe; significant narcotics-related money-laundering activity, especially along the border with Colombia and on Margarita Island; active eradication program primarily targeting opium; increasing signs of drug-related activities by Colombian insurgents on border

 

3.0  RANKING OF GNP BY ALPHABETICAL ORDER

Country

Gross National Product

Population

Year

Continent

 Argentina

$403,800,000,000

38,740,807

2003 est.

South America

 Bolivia

$21,150,000,000

8,691,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Brazil

$1,376,000,000,000

174,222,000

2003 est.

South America

British Guyana

$2,628,000,000

872,200

 

South America

 Chile

$156,100,000,000

15,572,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Colombia

$251,600,000,000

43,755,000

 2003 est.

South America

Ecuador

$426,500,000,000

13,710,234

 2003 est.

South America

 French Guiana

$2,260,000,000

186,900

 2003 est.

South America

 Paraguay

$25,190,000,000

5,770,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Peru

$138,800,000,000

26,490,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Suriname

$1,469,000,000

421,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Uruguay

$26,820,000,000

3,384,400

 2003 est.

South America

 Venezuela

$131,700,000,000

25,058,000

 2003 est.

South America Total

South American Total

$2,537,592,000,000

343,163,307

 2003 est.

South America Total

 

3.1 RANKING OF GNP BY POPULATION

Country

Gross National Product

Population

Year

Continent

Brazil

$1,376,000,000,000

174,222,000

2003 est.

South America

 Colombia

$251,600,000,000

43,755,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Argentina

$403,800,000,000

38,740,807

2003 est.

South America

 Peru

$138,800,000,000

26,490,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Venezuela

$131,700,000,000

25,058,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Chile

$156,100,000,000

15,572,000

 2003 est.

South America

Ecuador

$426,500,000,000

13,710,234

 2003 est.

South America

 Bolivia

$21,150,000,000

8,691,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Paraguay

$25,190,000,000

5,770,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Uruguay

$26,820,000,000

3,384,400

 2003 est.

South America

British Guyana

$2,628,000,000

872,200

 2003 est.

South America

 Suriname

$1,469,000,000

421,000

 2003 est.

South America

 French Guiana

$2,260,000,000

186,900

 2003 est.

South America

South American Total

$2,537,592,000,000

343,163,307

 2003 est.

South America Total

 

3.2 RANKING OF GNP BY DOLLAR AMOUNT

Country

Gross National Product

Population

Year

Continent

 Brazil

$1,376,000,000,000

174,222,000

2003 est.

South America

Ecuador

$426,500,000,000

13,710,234

 2003 est.

South America

 Argentina

$403,800,000,000

38,740,807

2003 est.

South America

 Colombia

$251,600,000,000

43,755,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Chile

$156,100,000,000

15,572,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Peru

$138,800,000,000

26,490,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Venezuela

$131,700,000,000

25,058,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Uruguay

$26,820,000,000

3,384,400

 2003 est.

South America

 Paraguay

$25,190,000,000

5,770,000

 2003 est.

South America

 Bolivia

$21,150,000,000

8,691,000

 2003 est.

South America

British Guyana

$2,628,000,000

872,200

 2003 est.

South America

 French Guiana

$2,260,000,000

186,900

 2003 est.

South America

 Suriname

$1,469,000,000

421,000

 2003 est.

South America Total

South American Total

$2,537,592,000,000

343,163,307

 2003 est.

South America Total

   

4.0 CHRONOLOGY OF SOUTH AMERICA

 

Brief History of South America:

 

1486 = The Portuguese, who had made a number of pioneering voyages southward in the Atlantic Ocean, sought the new route by probing the coast of Africa, reaching the Cape of Good Hope in 1486.

 

1492 = In 1492 Christopher Columbus attempted to reach India by sailing due west across the Atlantic Ocean; but he landed in the present-day West Indies, opening up a new world to European commerce and civilization.

 

1493 = After 1453, when the Turks completed the conquest of the Byzantine Empire and won control of the eastern Mediterranean, the western nations, chiefly Portugal and Spain, were forced to seek a new route to Asia.

 

1493 = After Columbus returned to Europe, Spain and Portugal became involved in controversy concerning land rights in the New World. The dispute was settled in 1493 by Pope Alexander VI, who allotted to Portugal all new territory east of a line in the Atlantic Ocean running due north and south 100 leagues west of the Azores and to Spain, all territory to the west of the line (see Demarcation, Line of). The demarcation line was later modified; with the result that Portugal obtained suzerainty over the eastern bulge of South America. This region subsequently became Brazil.

 

1498 = On August 1, 1498, during his third voyage, Columbus sailed to a point off the mouth of the Orinoco River and sighted the South American mainland.

 

1500 = The next European to reach the continent was Portuguese navigator Pedro Álvares Cabral. In April 1500 a fleet under his command anchored off the coast of present-day Brazil, which he claimed for Portugal.

 

1516 = Death of Ferdinand of Aragon. Accession to the Spanish throne of Charles I (from 1519, Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor).

 

1519 = Late in 1519 Portuguese mariner Ferdinand Magellan, then seeking a westward route to the East for the Spanish monarchy, explored the estuary of the Río de la Plata. He resumed his search in the next year, cruising southward.

 

1519-21. Hernán Cortés conquers the Aztecs for Spain.

 

1519-22. First circumnavigation of globe, by Magellan's expedition.

 

1520 = November 28, 1520, Magellan having completed the passage of the strait that now bears his name, he simultaneously accomplished his mission and realized the dream of countless navigators.

 

1529 = In 1529 Bartholomäus Welser received a huge grant of territory in South America from Charles V, Holy Roman emperor and king of Spain, who was in debt to him. Welser immediately dispatched an expedition to the territory, which included present-day Venezuela. About 17 years later Welser's grant was revoked, partly because of extreme brutality inflicted by the German colonists on the Native Americans.

 

1531= The first European to penetrate the continental interior successfully was Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro. Pushing southward from Panama, he invaded the gold-rich empire of the Inca in 1531.

 

1532-6 = Francisco Pizarro conquers the Incas.

 

1535 = Arrival in Mexico of the first, and founding, viceroy, Don Antonio de Mendoza.

 

1535 = The conquest and colonization of the region bordering the Río de la Plata were begun in 1535 by Spanish soldier Pedro de Mendoza.

 

1536 = Pizarro acquired control of the Inca Empire, which included all of present-day Peru, Chile, and Bolivia.

 

1536 = Pedro Mendoza founded a settlement at Buenos Aires in 1536.

 

1536-1538 = Between 1536 and 1538 Spanish soldier Gonzalo Jiménez de Quesada subjugated the Chibcha and founded the Audiencia of New Granada (present-day Colombia).

 

1537 = First Peruvian see created, at Cuzco.

 

1538 = Foundation of Santa Fe de Bogotá.

 

1538 = Audiencia placed at City of Panama (re-established 1564).

 

1538 = Probable date of first shipment of African slaves to Brazil.

 

1539 = In 1539 Gonzalo Pizarro, brother of Francisco, crossed the Andes and arrived at the upper reaches of the Amazon River.

 

1540 = First sugar mills built in Peru.

 

1541= In the previous year conquistador Pedro de Valdivia began the systematic subjugation of the Araucanian, the native people of Chile. Valdivia founded Santiago in 1541. Meanwhile (about 1530) the Portuguese had begun to establish settlements along the coast of the eastern bulge of South America.

 

1541 = Assassination of Francisco Pizarro in Lima by Almagrists. See of Lima created.

1542 = Promulgation of the New Laws, reforming Spanish government in America, and controlling the encomienda.  The Permanent foundation of Guadalajara is in western Mexico.

 

1542 = One of his companions, Francisco de Orellana, followed the river down to its mouth, reaching the Atlantic Ocean in 1542.

 

1542 = The Viceroyalty of Peru (created in 1542) and the various audiencias, or territorial divisions, into which the remainder of Spanish South America was then divided had every prospect of developing into powerful and wealthy colonies.

 

1543 = Audiencias established in Lima and Guatemala.

 

1544 = First viceroy, Blasco Núñez Vela, arrives in Peru. Revolt of Peruvian colonists, under Gonzalo Pizarro, begins.

 

1548 = Defeat and execution of Gonzalo Pizarro: end of Peruvian rebellion against royal rule. See of Guadalajara created.

 

1548-49 = Tomé de Sousa appointed and installed as governor general of Brazil; foundation of town of Salvador (Bahia) as capital; arrival of Jesuits; appointment of first ouvidor geral.

 

1548-50 = Government of Peru by Pedro de la Gasca.

 

1555-67 = French colony of "Antarctic France" at Rio de Janeiro.

 

1556 = Abdication of Charles V (died 1558), Accession to Spanish throne of Philip II.

 

1560’s = First serious epidemics of Old World diseases in Brazil.

 

1563 = Audiencia established at Quito.

 

1565 = Northerly return route from East Asia to America found by Andrés de Urdaneta.

 

1566 = Beginning of Dutch revolt against Spanish rule.

 

1568 = First Jesuits in Spanish America, at Lima.

 

1569-81 = Administration of Don Francisco de Toledo, fifth, but "founding," viceroy of Peru.

 

1570 = Indians declared free by Sebastião, king of Portugal.

 

1570-71= Tribunals of the Inquisition set up in Lima (1570) and Mexico City (1571).

 

1575 = Approximate starting date of period of roughly fifty years of close Spanish control of the major American colonies

 

1576-1617 = Life of Isabel Flores de Oliva (Santa Rosa de Lima).

 

1588 = Defeat of the Spanish Armada sent against England.

 

1590’s = Rise of foreign incursions into the Caribbean.

Late 1590s = First Dutch settlers on Guiana coast of South America.

 

1598 = Death of Philip II of Spain, Accession of Philip III.

 

1600’s (i.e. 17th century): rise of Creole numbers, and Creole participation in colonial affairs and government; growing weakness (economic, military, political) of Spain itself (though Spanish arts and literature flourish in the 'Golden Age', lasting until almost 1700); growing economic and administrative independence of the colonies; native populations in most regions begin to recover from declines in the 1500s; foreigners (French, Dutch, and English) begin to press on edges of the Spanish empire, particularly in the Caribbean. The Dutch occupation of Northeast Brazil was 1630-54.

 

1600’s = By the1600’s, numerous Spanish settlements had been firmly established in South America.

 

1600 = Beginning of slave-raiding bandeiras from São Paulo.

 

1606 = Royal decree permitting purchase of almost all local offices. Beginning of silver boom at Oruro (lasting until c.1630).

 

1606 = Founding of first Brazilian relação, at Salvador.

 

1609-21 = Truce between Spain and the Dutch occurred.

 

1610 = First Jesuits reductions (missions) among, Guaraní, in Paraguay happened.

 

1610 = Three-roller sugar mill introduced into Brazil.

 

1611-1681 = Life of Diego Quispe Tito, prime early painter of the Cuzco school.

 

1615 = French finally driven away from Brazil.

 

1621 = Death of Philip III of Spain, Accession of Philip IV. The Foundation of Dutch West India Company founded.

 

1628 = Piet Heyn captures a Spanish treasure fleet off Cape Matanzas (Cuba).

1630 = Dutch capture of Recife: beginning of Dutch occupation of Northeast Brazil.

 

1633 = Beginning of sale of fiscal offices in Spanish America.

 

1637-9 = Expedition of Pedro Teixeira from northern Brazil to Quito and back: Brazil's boundary extended far westward.

 

1637-44 = Brazilian administration of Johan Maurits van Nassau-Siegen.

 

1640 = Portuguese revolt against Spanish rule.

 

1649 = General Brazil Trading Company founded.

 

1650-1700 = Large inland movement of cattle in Brazil.

 

1654 = Dutch leave Brazil.

 

1693 = An important gold strike in 1693 rapidly intensified settlement in what is now Minas Gerais State in Brazil, attracting major immigration from Portugal and promoting the rapid growth of the new port of Rio de Janeiro.

 

17th Century = At the close of the 17th century Spain and Portugal dominated all South America except Guiana, which had been seized by and divided among Great Britain, France, and The Netherlands.

 

1700 = Death of Charles II, final Hapsburg ruler of Spain.

 

1701 = Accession of Philip V, first Bourbon king of Spain.

 

1701-14 = War of the Spanish Succession.

 

1720 = Captaincy of Minas Gerais was created and the Abolition of General Brazil Trading Company. Chief executive in Brazil henceforth termed viceroy.

 

1721-1735 = Revolt in Paraguay.

 

1724 = Founding of the Academy of the Forgotten (Academia Brasílica dos Esquecidos) at Salvador, first of several Brazilian intellectual academies of the eighteenth century.

 

1728 = Caracas (or Guipúzcoa) Company founded in Spain.

 

1730 = Mestizo-led rising at Cochabamba.

 

1739 = Viceroyalty of New Granada established.

 

1742 = Beginning of Juan Santos Atahualpa's rising in Peruvian Andes.

1746 = Our Lady of Guadalupe proclaimed patroness of New Spain, Death of Philip V. Accession of Ferdinand VI.

 

1748 = Last sailing of Galeones to Isthmus of Panama.

 

1759 = Death of Ferdinand VI, Accession of Charles III.

 

1759 = Creation of Pernambuco and Paraíba Company. Jesuits expelled from Portuguese territories.

 

1763 = La Paz (Bolivia) by Túpac Katari, Comunero revolt in New Granada. Capital of Brazil shifted from Salvador to Rio de Janeiro.

 

1764. First American ports opened to single ship trade. First intendant placed in America (Cuba).

 

1765 = Rising in Quito against growing fiscal pressure.