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Fiji (2004)

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Fiji 2004 year

Administrative divisions 4 divisions and 1 dependency*; Central, Eastern, Northern, Rotuma*, Western
Age structure 0-14 years: 31.7% (male 142,412; female 136,754)

15-64 years: 64.3% (male 283,690; female 283,027)

65 years and over: 4% (male 16,047; female 18,944) (2004 est.)
Agriculture - products sugarcane, coconuts, cassava (tapioca), rice, sweet potatoes, bananas; cattle, pigs, horses, goats; fish
Airports 28 (2003 est.)
Airports - with paved runways total: 3

over 3,047 m: 1

1,524 to 2,437 m: 1

914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2004 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways total: 25

914 to 1,523 m: 6

under 914 m: 19 (2004 est.)
Area total: 18,270 sq km

land: 18,270 sq km

water: 0 sq km
Area - comparative slightly smaller than New Jersey
Background Fiji became independent in 1970, after nearly a century as a British colony. Democratic rule was interrupted by two military coups in 1987, caused by concern over a government perceived as dominated by the Indian community (descendants of contract laborers brought to the islands by the British in the 19th century). A 1990 constitution favored native Melanesian control of Fiji, but led to heavy Indian emigration; the population loss resulted in economic difficulties, but ensured that Melanesians became the majority. Amendments enacted in 1997 made the constitution more equitable. Free and peaceful elections in 1999 resulted in a government led by an Indo-Fijian, but a coup in May 2000 ushered in a prolonged period of political turmoil. Parliamentary elections held in August 2001 provided Fiji with a democratically elected government and gave a mandate to the government of Prime Minister Laisenia QARASE.
Birth rate 22.91 births/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Budget revenues: $427.9 million

expenditures: $531.4 million, including capital expenditures of NA (2000 est.)
Capital Suva (Viti Levu)
Climate tropical marine; only slight seasonal temperature variation
Coastline 1,129 km
Constitution promulgated on 25 July 1990 and amended on 25 July 1997 to allow nonethnic Fijians greater say in government and to make multiparty government mandatory; entered into force 28 July 1998; note - the May 1999 election was the first test of the amended constitution and introduced open voting - not racially prescribed - for the first time at the national level
Country name conventional long form: Republic of the Fiji Islands

conventional short form: Fiji
Currency Fijian dollar (FJD)
Death rate 5.68 deaths/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Debt - external $188.1 million (2001 est.)
Diplomatic representation from the US chief of mission: Ambassador David L. LYON

embassy: 31 Loftus Street, Suva

mailing address: P. O. Box 218, Suva

telephone: [679] 331-4466

FAX: [679] 330-0081
Diplomatic representation in the US chief of mission: Mr. Paula NAVUNISARAVI (Charge D'Affaires ad Interim)

chancery: 2233 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Suite 240, Washington, DC 20007

telephone: [1] (202) 337-8320

FAX: [1] (202) 337-1996
Disputes - international none
Economic aid - recipient $40.3 million (1995)
Economy - overview Fiji, endowed with forest, mineral, and fish resources, is one of the most developed of the Pacific island economies, though still with a large subsistence sector. Sugar exports and a growing tourist industry - with 300,000 to 400,000 tourists annually - are the major sources of foreign exchange. Sugar processing makes up one-third of industrial activity. Long-term problems include low investment, uncertain land ownership rights, and the government's ability to manage its budget. Yet short-run economic prospects are good, provided tensions do not again erupt between indigenous Fijians and Indo-Fijians.
Electricity - consumption 483.7 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports 0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports 0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - production 520.1 million kWh (2001)
Elevation extremes lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m

highest point: Tomanivi 1,324 m
Environment - current issues deforestation; soil erosion
Environment - international agreements party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Law of the Sea, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Ethnic groups Fijian 51% (predominantly Melanesian with a Polynesian admixture), Indian 44%, European, other Pacific Islanders, overseas Chinese, and other 5% (1998 est.)
Exchange rates Fijian dollars per US dollar - 1.8958 (2003), 2.1869 (2002), 2.2766 (2001), 2.1286 (2000), 1.9696 (1999)
Executive branch chief of state: President Ratu Josefa ILOILOVATU Uluivuda (since 18 July 2000)

head of government: Prime Minister Laisenia QARASE (since 10 September 2000)

cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the prime minister from among the members of Parliament and is responsible to Parliament; note - there is also a Presidential Council that advises the president on matters of national importance and a Great Council of Chiefs, which consists of the highest ranking members of the traditional chief system

elections: president elected by the Great Council of Chiefs for a five-year term; prime minister appointed by the president

election results: Ratu Josefa ILOILOVATU Uluivuda elected president by the Great Council of Chiefs; percent of vote - NA%
Exports 0 kWh (2001)
Exports $609 million f.o.b. (2002)
Exports NA (2001)
Exports - commodities sugar, garments, gold, timber, fish, molasses, coconut oil
Exports - partners US 23.7%, Australia 18.4%, UK 13.6%, Samoa 6%, Japan 4.8% (2003)
Fiscal year calendar year
Flag description light blue with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and the Fijian shield centered on the outer half of the flag; the shield depicts a yellow lion above a white field quartered by the cross of Saint George featuring stalks of sugarcane, a palm tree, bananas, and a white dove
GDP purchasing power parity - $5.012 billion (2003 est.)
GDP - composition by sector agriculture: 16.6%

industry: 22.4%

services: 61% (2001 est.)
GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $5,800 (2003 est.)
GDP - real growth rate 4.8% (2003 est.)
Geographic coordinates 18 00 S, 175 00 E
Geography - note includes 332 islands of which approximately 110 are inhabited
Highways total: 3,440 km

paved: 1,692 km

unpaved: 1,748 km (1999 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%: NA

highest 10%: NA
Imports 0 kWh (2001)
Imports $835 million c.i.f. (2002)
Imports NA (2001)
Imports - commodities manufactured goods, machinery and transport equipment, petroleum products, food, chemicals
Imports - partners Australia 35.1%, Singapore 19.2%, New Zealand 17.2%, Japan 4.9% (2003)
Independence 10 October 1970 (from UK)
Industrial production growth rate NA
Industries tourism, sugar, clothing, copra, gold, silver, lumber, small cottage industries
Infant mortality rate total: 12.99 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 14.36 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 11.54 deaths/1,000 live births (2004 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 1.6% (2002 est.)
International organization participation ACP, AsDB, C, CP, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO (correspondent), ITU, MIGA, OPCW, PCA, PIF, Sparteca, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNMIK, UNMISET, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO
Irrigated land 30 sq km (1998 est.)
Judicial branch Supreme Court (judges are appointed by the president); Court of Appeal; High Court; Magistrates' Courts
Labor force 137,000 (1999)
Labor force - by occupation agriculture, including subsistence agriculture 70% (2001 est.)
Land boundaries 0 km
Land use arable land: 10.95%

permanent crops: 4.65%

other: 84.4% (2001)
Languages English (official), Fijian, Hindustani
Legal system based on British system
Legislative branch bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (34 seats; 24 appointed by the President on the advice of the Great Council of Chiefs, nine appointed by the president, and one appointed by the council of Rotuma) and the House of Representatives (71 seats; 23 reserved for ethnic Fijians, 19 reserved for ethnic Indians, three reserved for other ethnic groups, one reserved for the council of Rotuma constituency encompassing the whole of Fiji, and 25 open seats; members serve five-year terms)

elections: House of Representatives - last held 25 August through 1 September, 19 September 2001 (next to be held not later than September 2006)

election results: House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - FLP 26.5%, SDL 27.5%, NFP 1.2%, MV 4.2%, NLUP 1.3%, UGP .3%, independents 1.4%; seats by party - FLP 27, SDL 32, MV 6, NFP 1, NLUP 2, UGP 1, independents 2
Life expectancy at birth total population: 69.2 years

male: 66.74 years

female: 71.79 years (2004 est.)
Literacy definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 93.7%

male: 95.5%

female: 91.9% (2003 est.)
Location Oceania, island group in the South Pacific Ocean, about two-thirds of the way from Hawaii to New Zealand
Map references Oceania
Maritime claims measured from claimed archipelagic straight baselines

territorial sea: 12 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation; rectilinear shelf claim added
Merchant marine total: 2 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 6,372 GRT/7,453 DWT

by type: chemical tanker 1, passenger 1

foreign-owned: Australia 1, Singapore 1 (2004 est.)
Military branches Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF): Land Forces, Naval Division
Military expenditures - dollar figure $34 million (2003)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP 2.2% (FY02)
Military manpower - availability males age 15-49: 239,221 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service males age 15-49: 131,349 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually males: 9,302 (2004 est.)
National holiday Independence Day, second Monday of October (1970)
Nationality noun: Fijian(s)

adjective: Fijian
Natural hazards cyclonic storms can occur from November to January
Natural resources timber, fish, gold, copper, offshore oil potential, hydropower
Net migration rate -3.14 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Political parties and leaders Bai Kei Viti Party or BKV [Ratu Tevita MOMOEDONU]; Conservative Alliance Party/Matanitu Vanua or MV [Ratu Rakuita VAKALALABURE]; Dodonu Ni Taukei Party or DNT [Fereti S. DEWA]; Fiji Democratic Party or FDP [Felipe BOLE] (a merger of the Christian Democrat Alliance or VLV [Poesci Waqalevu BUNE], Fijian Association Party or FAP [Adi Kuini SPEED], Fijian Political Party or SVT (primarily Fijian) [Felipe BOLE], and New Labor Unity Party or NLUP [Tupeni BABA]); Fiji Labor Party or FLP [Mahendra CHAUDRHRY]; General Voters Party or GVP [leader NA] (became part of United General Party); Girmit Heritage Party or GHP [leader NA]; Justice and Freedom Party or AIM [leader NA]; Lio 'On Famor Rotuma Party or LFR [leader NA]; National Federation Party or NFP (primarily Indian) [Pramond RAE]; Nationalist Vanua Takolavo Party or NVTLP [Saula TELAWA]; Party of National Unity or PANU [Meli BOGILEKA]; Party of the Truth or POTT [leader NA]; United Fiji Party/Sogosogo Duavata ni Lewenivanua or SDL [Laisenia QARASE]; United General Party or UGP [Millis Mick BEDDOES]
Political pressure groups and leaders NA
Population 880,874 (July 2004 est.)
Population below poverty line 25.5% (1990-91)
Population growth rate 1.41% (2004 est.)
Ports and harbors Lambasa, Lautoka, Levuka, Malau, Savusavu, Suva, Vuda
Radio broadcast stations AM 13, FM 40, shortwave 0 (1998)
Railways total: 597 km

narrow gauge: 597 km 0.600-m gauge

note: belongs to the government-owned Fiji Sugar Corporation; used to haul sugarcane during harvest season (May to December) (2003)
Religions Christian 52% (Methodist 37%, Roman Catholic 9%), Hindu 38%, Muslim 8%, other 2%

note: Fijians are mainly Christian, Indians are Hindu, and there is a Muslim minority (1986)
Sex ratio at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.85 male(s)/female

total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2004 est.)
Suffrage 21 years of age; universal
Telephone system general assessment: modern local, interisland, and international (wire/radio integrated) public and special-purpose telephone, telegraph, and teleprinter facilities; regional radio communications center

domestic: NA

international: country code - 679; access to important cable links between US and Canada as well as between NZ and Australia; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean)
Telephones - main lines in use 102,000 (2003)
Telephones - mobile cellular 109,900 (2003)
Television broadcast stations NA
Terrain mostly mountains of volcanic origin
Total fertility rate 2.78 children born/woman (2004 est.)
Unemployment rate 7.6% (1999)
Waterways 203 km

note: 122 km navigable by motorized craft and 200-metric-ton barges (2004)
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