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Kiribati (2004)

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Kiribati 2004 year

Administrative divisions 3 units; Gilbert Islands, Line Islands, Phoenix Islands; note - in addition, there are 6 districts (Banaba, Central Gilberts, Line Islands, Northern Gilberts, Southern Gilberts, Tarawa) and 21 island councils - one for each of the inhabited islands (Abaiang, Abemama, Aranuka, Arorae, Banaba, Beru, Butaritari, Kanton, Kiritimati, Kuria, Maiana, Makin, Marakei, Nikunau, Nonouti, Onotoa, Tabiteuea, Tabuaeran, Tamana, Tarawa, Teraina)
Age structure 0-14 years: 39.3% (male 20,087; female 19,566)

15-64 years: 57.3% (male 28,523; female 29,280)

65 years and over: 3.3% (male 1,434; female 1,908) (2004 est.)
Agriculture - products copra, taro, breadfruit, sweet potatoes, vegetables; fish
Airports 20 (2003 est.)
Airports - with paved runways total: 3

1,524 to 2,437 m: 3 (2004 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways total: 17

1,524 to 2,437 m: 1

914 to 1,523 m: 12

under 914 m: 4 (2004 est.)
Area total: 811 sq km

land: 811 sq km

water: 0 sq km

note: includes three island groups - Gilbert Islands, Line Islands, Phoenix Islands
Area - comparative four times the size of Washington, DC
Background The Gilbert Islands were granted self-rule by the UK in 1971 and complete independence in 1979 under the new name of Kiribati. The US relinquished all claims to the sparsely inhabited Phoenix and Line Island groups in a 1979 treaty of friendship with Kiribati.
Birth rate 30.99 births/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Budget revenues: $28.4 million

expenditures: $37.2 million, including capital expenditures of NA (2000 est.)
Capital Tarawa
Climate tropical; marine, hot and humid, moderated by trade winds
Coastline 1,143 km
Constitution 12 July 1979
Country name conventional long form: Republic of Kiribati

conventional short form: Kiribati

note: pronounced keer-ree-bahss

former: Gilbert Islands
Currency Australian dollar (AUD)
Death rate 8.49 deaths/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Debt - external $10 million (1999 est.)
Diplomatic representation from the US the US does not have an embassy in Kiribati; the ambassador to Fiji is accredited to Kiribati
Diplomatic representation in the US Kiribati does not have an embassy in the US; there is an honorary consulate in Honolulu
Disputes - international none
Economic aid - recipient $15.5 million largely from UK and Japan (2001 est.)
Economy - overview A remote country of 33 scattered coral atolls, Kiribati has few natural resources. Commercially viable phosphate deposits were exhausted at the time of independence from the UK in 1979. Copra and fish now represent the bulk of production and exports. The economy has fluctuated widely in recent years. Economic development is constrained by a shortage of skilled workers, weak infrastructure, and remoteness from international markets. Tourism provides more than one-fifth of GDP. The financial sector is at an early stage of development as is the expansion of private sector initiatives. Foreign financial aid from UK, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, and China equals 25%-50% of GDP. Remittances from workers abroad account for more than $5 million each year.
Electricity - consumption 6.51 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports 0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports 0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - production 7 million kWh (2001)
Elevation extremes lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m

highest point: unnamed location on Banaba 81 m
Environment - current issues heavy pollution in lagoon of south Tarawa atoll due to heavy migration mixed with traditional practices such as lagoon latrines and open-pit dumping; ground water at risk
Environment - international agreements party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Ethnic groups predominantly Micronesian with some Polynesian
Exchange rates Australian dollars per US dollar - 1.5419 (2003), 1.8406 (2002), 1.9334 (2001), 1.7248 (2000), 1.55 (1999)
Executive branch chief of state: President Anote TONG (since 10 July 2003); Vice President Teima ONORIO; note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Anote TONG (since 10 July 2003); Vice President Teima ONORIO; note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

cabinet: 12-member Cabinet appointed by the president from among the members of the House of Parliament

elections: the House of Parliament chooses the presidential candidates from among their members and then those candidates compete in a general election; president is elected by popular vote for a four-year term; election last held 4 July 2003 (next to be held not later than July 2007); vice president appointed by the president

election results: Anote TONG 47.4%, Harry TONG 43.5%, Banuera BERINA 9.1%
Exports 0 kWh (2001)
Exports $35 million f.o.b. (2002)
Exports NA (2001)
Exports - commodities copra 62%, coconuts, seaweed, fish
Exports - partners Japan 75%, Australia 8.3%, US 8.3%, Philippines 4.2%, Thailand 4.2% (2003)
Fiscal year NA
Flag description the upper half is red with a yellow frigate bird flying over a yellow rising sun, and the lower half is blue with three horizontal wavy white stripes to represent the ocean
GDP purchasing power parity - $79 million - supplemented by a nearly equal amount from external sources (2001 est.)
GDP - composition by sector agriculture: 30%

industry: 7%

services: 63% (1998 est.)
GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $800 (2001 est.)
GDP - real growth rate 1.5% (2001 est.)
Geographic coordinates 1 25 N, 173 00 E
Geography - note 21 of the 33 islands are inhabited; Banaba (Ocean Island) in Kiribati is one of the three great phosphate rock islands in the Pacific Ocean - the others are Makatea in French Polynesia, and Nauru
Highways total: 670 km

paved: NA km

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

highest 10%: NA
Imports 0 kWh (2001)
Imports $83 million c.i.f. (2002)
Imports NA (2001)
Imports - commodities foodstuffs, machinery and equipment, miscellaneous manufactured goods, fuel
Imports - partners Australia 41.7%, Fiji 26.7%, New Zealand 8.9%, Japan 5.9%, US 4% (2003)
Independence 12 July 1979 (from UK)
Industrial production growth rate 0.7% (1991 est.)
Industries fishing, handicrafts
Infant mortality rate total: 49.9 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 55.04 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 44.49 deaths/1,000 live births (2004 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 2.5% (2001 est.)
International organization participation ACP, AsDB, C, FAO, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, IOC, ITU, OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, UN, UNESCO, UPU, WHO, WMO
Irrigated land NA sq km
Judicial branch Court of Appeal; High Court; 26 Magistrates' courts; judges at all levels are appointed by the president
Labor force 7,870 economically active, not including subsistence farmers (2001 est.)
Land boundaries 0 km
Land use arable land: 2.74%

permanent crops: 50.68%

other: 46.58% (2001)
Languages I-Kiribati, English (official)
Legal system NA
Legislative branch unicameral House of Parliament or Maneaba Ni Maungatabu (42 seats; 39 elected by popular vote, one ex officio member - the attorney general, one appointed to represent Banaba, and one other; members serve four-year terms)

elections: first round elections last held 29 November 2002; second round elections held 6 December 2002 (next to be held by November 2006)

election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - BTK 17, MTM 16, independents 7, other 2 (includes attorney general)

note: new legislative elections were held in two rounds - the first round on 9 May 2003 and the second round on 14 May 2003
Life expectancy at birth total population: 61.32 years

male: 58.34 years

female: 64.44 years (2004 est.)
Literacy definition: NA

total population: NA

male: NA

female: NA
Location Oceania, group of 33 coral atolls in the Pacific Ocean, straddling the equator; the capital Tarawa is about one-half of the way from Hawaii to Australia; note - on 1 January 1995, Kiribati proclaimed that all of its territory lies in the same time zone as its Gilbert Islands group (GMT +12) even though the Phoenix Islands and the Line Islands under its jurisdiction lie on the other side of the International Date Line
Map references Oceania
Maritime claims territorial sea: 12 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Merchant marine total: 1 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 1,291 GRT/1,295 DWT

by type: passenger 1 (2004 est.)
Military - note Kiribati does not have military forces; defense assistance is provided by Australia and NZ
Military branches no regular military forces; Police Force (carries out law enforcement functions and paramilitary duties; small police posts are on all islands)
Military expenditures - dollar figure NA
Military expenditures - percent of GDP NA
National holiday Independence Day, 12 July (1979)
Nationality noun: I-Kiribati (singular and plural)

adjective: I-Kiribati
Natural hazards typhoons can occur any time, but usually November to March; occasional tornadoes; low level of some of the islands make them very sensitive to changes in sea level
Natural resources phosphate (production discontinued in 1979)
Net migration rate 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Political parties and leaders Boutokaan Te Koaua Party or BTK [Taberannang TIMEON]; Maneaban Te Mauri Party or MTM [Teburoro TITO]; Maurin Kiribati Pati or MKP [leader NA]; National Progressive Party or NPP [Dr. Harry TONG]

note: there is no tradition of formally organized political parties in Kiribati; they more closely resemble factions or interest groups because they have no party headquarters, formal platforms, or party structures
Political pressure groups and leaders NA
Population 100,798 (July 2004 est.)
Population below poverty line NA
Population growth rate 2.25% (2004 est.)
Ports and harbors Banaba, Betio, English Harbour, Kanton
Radio broadcast stations AM 1, FM 2, shortwave 1

note: the shortwave station may be inactive (2002)
Religions Roman Catholic 52%, Protestant (Congregational) 40%, some Seventh-Day Adventist, Muslim, Baha'i, Latter-day Saints, and Church of God (1999)
Sex ratio at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.03 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 0.97 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.75 male(s)/female

total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2004 est.)
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal
Telephone system general assessment: NA

domestic: NA

international: satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean)

note: country code - 686; Kiribati is being linked to the Pacific Ocean Cooperative Telecommunications Network, which should improve telephone service
Telephones - main lines in use 4,500 (2002)
Telephones - mobile cellular 500 (2002)
Television broadcast stations 1 (not reported to be active) (2002)
Terrain mostly low-lying coral atolls surrounded by extensive reefs
Total fertility rate 4.24 children born/woman (2004 est.)
Unemployment rate 2%; underemployment 70% (1992 est.)
Waterways 5 km (small network of canals in Line Islands) (2003)
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