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Cook Islands (2008)

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Cook Islands 2008 year

 Cook Islands
Administrative divisions none
Age structure 0-14 years: 34.1% (male 2,718/female 2,388)

15-64 years: 59.5% (male 4,531/female 4,395)

65 years and over: 6.4% (male 489/female 469) (2001 census) (2001 census)
Agriculture - products copra, citrus, pineapples, tomatoes, beans, pawpaws, bananas, yams, taro, coffee; pigs, poultry
Airports 9 (2007)
Airports - with paved runways total: 2

1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 (2007)
Airports - with unpaved runways total: 7

1,524 to 2,437 m: 2

914 to 1,523 m: 4

under 914 m: 1 (2007)
Area total: 236.7 sq km

land: 236.7 sq km

water: 0 sq km
Area - comparative 1.3 times the size of Washington, DC
Background Named after Captain COOK, who sighted them in 1770, the islands became a British protectorate in 1888. By 1900, administrative control was transferred to New Zealand; in 1965, residents chose self-government in free association with New Zealand. The emigration of skilled workers to New Zealand and government deficits are continuing problems.
Birth rate 21 births/1,000 population NA (2001 census)
Budget revenues: $70.95 million

expenditures: $69.05 million (FY05/06)
Capital name: Avarua

geographic coordinates: 21 12 S, 159 46 W

time difference: UTC-10 (5 hours behind Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Climate tropical oceanic; moderated by trade winds; a dry season from April to November and a more humid season from December to March
Coastline 120 km
Constitution 4 August 1965
Country name conventional long form: none

conventional short form: Cook Islands

former: Harvey Islands
Death rate NA
Debt - external $141 million (1996 est.)
Dependency status self-governing in free association with New Zealand; Cook Islands is fully responsible for internal affairs; New Zealand retains responsibility for external affairs and defense, in consultation with the Cook Islands
Diplomatic representation from the US none (self-governing in free association with New Zealand)
Diplomatic representation in the US none (self-governing in free association with New Zealand)
Disputes - international none
Economic aid - recipient $13.1 million; note - New Zealand continues to furnish the greater part (1995)
Economy - overview Like many other South Pacific island nations, the Cook Islands' economic development is hindered by the isolation of the country from foreign markets, the limited size of domestic markets, lack of natural resources, periodic devastation from natural disasters, and inadequate infrastructure. Agriculture, employing about one-third of the working population, provides the economic base with major exports made up of copra and citrus fruit. Black pearls are the Cook Islands' leading export. Manufacturing activities are limited to fruit processing, clothing, and handicrafts. Trade deficits are offset by remittances from emigrants and by foreign aid, overwhelmingly from New Zealand. In the 1980s and 1990s, the country lived beyond its means, maintaining a bloated public service and accumulating a large foreign debt. Subsequent reforms, including the sale of state assets, the strengthening of economic management, the encouragement of tourism, and a debt restructuring agreement, have rekindled investment and growth.
Electricity - consumption 27.9 million kWh (2005 est.)
Electricity - exports 0 kWh (2005)
Electricity - imports 0 kWh (2005)
Electricity - production 30 million kWh (2005)
Elevation extremes lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m

highest point: Te Manga 652 m
Environment - current issues NA
Environment - international agreements party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Ethnic groups Cook Island Maori (Polynesian) 87.7%, part Cook Island Maori 5.8%, other 6.5% (2001 census)
Exchange rates NZ dollars per US dollar - 1.3811 (2007), 1.5408 (2006), 1.4203 (2005), 1.5087 (2004), 1.7221 (2003)
Executive branch chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Frederick GOODWIN (since 9 February 2001); New Zealand High Commissioner Brian DONNELLY (since 21 February 2008), representative of New Zealand

head of government: Prime Minister Jim MARURAI (since 14 December 2004); Deputy Prime Minister Terepai MAOATE (since 9 August 2005)

cabinet: Cabinet chosen by the prime minister; collectively responsible to Parliament

elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; the UK representative is appointed by the monarch; the New Zealand high commissioner is appointed by the New Zealand Government; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition usually becomes prime minister
Exports 0 kWh (2005)
Exports $5.222 million (2005)
Exports 0 cu m (2005 est.)
Exports 0 bbl/day (2004)
Exports - commodities copra, papayas, fresh and canned citrus fruit, coffee; fish; pearls and pearl shells; clothing
Exports - partners Australia 34%, Japan 27%, NZ 25%, US 8% (2006)
Fiscal year 1 April - 31 March
Flag description blue, with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and a large circle of 15 white five-pointed stars (one for every island) centered in the outer half of the flag
GDP - composition by sector agriculture: 15.1%

industry: 9.6%

services: 75.3% (2004)
GDP - real growth rate 0.1% (2005 est.)
Geographic coordinates 21 14 S, 159 46 W
Geography - note the northern Cook Islands are seven low-lying, sparsely populated, coral atolls; the southern Cook Islands, where most of the population lives, consist of eight elevated, fertile, volcanic isles, including the largest, Rarotonga, at 67 sq km
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%: NA%

highest 10%: NA%
Imports 0 kWh (2005)
Imports $81.04 million (2005)
Imports 0 cu m (2005)
Imports 429.3 bbl/day (2004)
Imports - commodities foodstuffs, textiles, fuels, timber, capital goods
Imports - partners NZ 61%, Fiji 19%, US 9%, Australia 6%, Japan 2% (2006)
Independence none (became self-governing in free association with New Zealand on 4 August 1965 and has the right at any time to move to full independence by unilateral action)
Industrial production growth rate 1% (2002)
Industries fruit processing, tourism, fishing, clothing, handicrafts
Infant mortality rate total: NA

male: NA

female: NA
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 2.1% (2005 est.)
International organization participation ACP, ADB, FAO, ICAO, ICRM, IFAD, IFRCS, IOC, ITUC, OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, SPC, UNESCO, UPU, WHO, WMO
Irrigated land NA
Judicial branch High Court
Labor force 6,820 (2001)
Labor force - by occupation agriculture: 29%

industry: 15%

services: 56% (1995)
Land boundaries 0 km
Land use arable land: 16.67%

permanent crops: 8.33%

other: 75% (2005)
Languages English (official), Maori
Legal system based on New Zealand law and English common law
Legislative branch bicameral Parliament consisting of a Legislative Assembly (or lower house) (25 seats, 24 seats representing districts of the Cook Islands, 1 seat representing Cook Islanders living overseas; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) and a House of Ariki (or upper house) made up of traditional leaders

note: the House of Ariki advises on traditional matters and maintains considerable influence but has no legislative powers

elections: last held 26 September 2006 (next to be held by 2011)

election results: percent of vote by party - Demo 51.9%, CIP 45.5%, independent 2.7%; seats by party - Demo 15, CIP 8, independent 1
Life expectancy at birth total population: NA

male: NA

female: NA
Literacy definition: NA

total population: 95%

male: NA%

female: NA%
Location Oceania, group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean, about one-half of the way from Hawaii to New Zealand
Map references Oceania
Maritime claims territorial sea: 12 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
Merchant marine total: 16 ships (1000 GRT or over) 112,129 GRT/126,160 DWT

by type: cargo 5, petroleum tanker 1, refrigerated cargo 9, roll on/roll off 1

foreign-owned: 11 (Norway 1, NZ 1, Sweden 9) (2007)
Military - note defense is the responsibility of New Zealand, in consultation with the Cook Islands and at its request
Military branches no regular military forces; National Police Department (2007)
National holiday Constitution Day, first Monday in August (1965)
Nationality noun: Cook Islander(s)

adjective: Cook Islander
Natural hazards typhoons (November to March)
Natural resources NEGL
People - note 2001 census counted a resident population of 15,017
Political parties and leaders Cook Islands Party or CIP [Henry PUNA]; Democratic Party or Demo [Dr. Terepai MAOATE]
Political pressure groups and leaders NA
Population 21,750 (July 2007 est.)
Population below poverty line NA%
Population growth rate -1.2% between 1996-2001 (2001 census)
Radio broadcast stations AM 1, FM 1, shortwave 0 (2004)
Religions Cook Islands Christian Church 55.9%, Roman Catholic 16.8%, Seventh-Day Adventists 7.9%, Church of Latter Day Saints 3.8%, other Protestant 5.8%, other 4.2%, unspecified 2.6%, none 3% (2001 census)
Sex ratio 1.07 male(s)/female (2001 census)
Suffrage NA years of age; universal (adult)
Telephone system general assessment: Telecom Cook Islands offers international direct dialing, Internet, email, fax, and Telex

domestic: the individual islands are connected by a combination of satellite earth stations, microwave systems, and VHF and HF radiotelephone; within the islands, service is provided by small exchanges connected to subscribers by open-wire, cable, and fiber-optic cable

international: country code - 682; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean)
Telephones - main lines in use 6,200 (2002)
Telephones - mobile cellular 1,500 (2002)
Television broadcast stations 1 (outer islands receive satellite broadcasts) (2004)
Terrain low coral atolls in north; volcanic, hilly islands in south
Total fertility rate 3.1 children born/woman (2001 census)
Unemployment rate 13.1% (2005)
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