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Maldives (2006)

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Maldives 2006 year

Administrative divisions 19 atolls (atholhu, singular and plural) and the capital city*; Alifu, Baa, Dhaalu, Faafu, Gaafu Alifu, Gaafu Dhaalu, Gnaviyani, Haa Alifu, Haa Dhaalu, Kaafu, Laamu, Lhaviyani, Maale* (Male), Meemu, Noonu, Raa, Seenu, Shaviyani, Thaa, Vaavu
Age structure 0-14 years: 43.4% (male 80,113/female 75,763)

15-64 years: 53.5% (male 98,040/female 94,029)

65 years and over: 3.1% (male 5,477/female 5,586) (2006 est.)
Agriculture - products coconuts, corn, sweet potatoes; fish
Airports 5 (2006)
Airports - with paved runways total: 2

over 3,047 m: 1

2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 (2006)
Airports - with unpaved runways total: 3

914 to 1,523 m: 3 (2006)
Area total: 300 sq km

land: 300 sq km

water: 0 sq km
Area - comparative about 1.7 times the size of Washington, DC
Background The Maldives was long a sultanate, first under Dutch and then under British protection. It became a republic in 1968, three years after independence. Since 1978, President Maumoon Abdul GAYOOM - currently in his sixth term in office - has dominated the islands' political scene. Following riots in the capital Male in August 2004, the president and his government have pledged to embark upon democratic reforms, including a more representative political system and expanded political freedoms. Tourism and fishing are being developed on the archipelago.
Birth rate 34.81 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Budget revenues: $265 million (excluding foreign grants)

expenditures: $362 million; including capital expenditures of $80 million (2004 est.)
Capital name: Male

geographic coordinates: 4 10 N, 73 31 E

time difference: UTC+5 (10 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Climate tropical; hot, humid; dry, northeast monsoon (November to March); rainy, southwest monsoon (June to August)
Coastline 644 km
Constitution adopted 1 January 1998
Country name conventional long form: Republic of Maldives

conventional short form: Maldives

local long form: Dhivehi Raajjeyge Jumhooriyyaa

local short form: Dhivehi Raajje
Death rate 7.06 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Debt - external $304 million (2004 est.)
Diplomatic representation from the US the US does not have an embassy in Maldives; the US Ambassador to Sri Lanka is accredited to Maldives and makes periodic visits there
Diplomatic representation in the US chief of mission: Ambassador Mohamed LATHEEF

chancery: 800 2nd Avenue, Suite 400E, New York, NY 10017

telephone: [1] (212) 599-6195

FAX: [1] (212) 661-6405
Disputes - international none
Economic aid - recipient $27.9 million $NA (2004)
Economy - overview Tourism, Maldives' largest industry, accounts for 20% of GDP and more than 60% of the Maldives' foreign exchange receipts. Over 90% of government tax revenue comes from import duties and tourism-related taxes. Fishing is a second leading sector. The Maldivian Government began an economic reform program in 1989 initially by lifting import quotas and opening some exports to the private sector. Subsequently, it has liberalized regulations to allow more foreign investment. Agriculture and manufacturing continue to play a lesser role in the economy, constrained by the limited availability of cultivable land and the shortage of domestic labor. Most staple foods must be imported. Industry, which consists mainly of garment production, boat building, and handicrafts, accounts for about 18% of GDP. Maldivian authorities worry about the impact of erosion and possible global warming on their low-lying country; 80% of the area is one meter or less above sea level. In late December 2004, a major tsunami left more than 100 dead, 12,000 displaced, and property damage exceeding $300 million. Over the past decade, real GDP growth averaged over 7.5% per year. As a result of the tsunami, the GDP contracted by about 5.5% in 2005.
Electricity - consumption 125.6 million kWh (2003)
Electricity - exports 0 kWh (2003)
Electricity - imports 0 kWh (2003)
Electricity - production 135 million kWh (2003)
Elevation extremes lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m

highest point: unnamed location on Wilingili island in the Addu Atoll 2.4 m
Environment - current issues depletion of freshwater aquifers threatens water supplies; global warming and sea level rise; coral reef bleaching
Environment - international agreements party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Ethnic groups South Indians, Sinhalese, Arabs
Exchange rates rufiyaa per US dollar - 12.8 (2005), 12.8 (2004), 12.8 (2003), 12.8 (2002), 12.24 (2001)
Executive branch chief of state: President Maumoon Abdul GAYOOM (since 11 November 1978); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Maumoon Abdul GAYOOM (since 11 November 1978); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

cabinet: Cabinet of Ministers appointed by the president

elections: president nominated by the Majlis and then the nomination must be ratified by a national referendum (at least a 51% approval margin is required); president elected for a five-year term; election last held 17 October 2003 (next to be held NA 2008)

election results: President Maumoon Abdul GAYOOM reelected in referendum held 17 October 2003; percent of popular vote - Maumoon Abdul GAYOOM 90.3%
Exports 0 kWh (2003)
Exports $123 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)
Exports NA bbl/day
Exports - commodities fish, clothing
Exports - partners Japan 22.8%, Thailand 22.7%, Sri Lanka 16.4%, UK 12.6%, Singapore 5.8%, Germany 4.8%, France 4.3% (2005)
Fiscal year calendar year
Flag description red with a large green rectangle in the center bearing a vertical white crescent; the closed side of the crescent is on the hoist side of the flag
GDP - composition by sector agriculture: 20%

industry: 18%

services: 62% (2000 est.)
GDP - real growth rate -3.6% (2005 est.)
Geographic coordinates 3 15 N, 73 00 E
Geography - note 1,190 coral islands grouped into 26 atolls (200 inhabited islands, plus 80 islands with tourist resorts); archipelago with strategic location astride and along major sea lanes in Indian Ocean
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%: NA%

highest 10%: NA%
Imports 0 kWh (2003)
Imports $567 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)
Imports NA bbl/day
Imports - commodities petroleum products, ships, foodstuffs, textiles, clothing, intermediate and capital goods
Imports - partners Singapore 24.1%, UAE 15.7%, India 11.3%, Malaysia 7.2%, Sri Lanka 5.7%, UK 4.5% (2005)
Independence 26 July 1965 (from UK)
Industrial production growth rate -0.9% (2004 est.)
Industries fish processing, tourism, shipping, boat building, coconut processing, garments, woven mats, rope, handicrafts, coral and sand mining
Infant mortality rate total: 54.89 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 54.01 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 55.8 deaths/1,000 live births (2006 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 6% (2005 est.)
International organization participation AsDB, C, CP, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IPU, ITU, MIGA, NAM, OIC, OPCW, SAARC, SACEP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO
Irrigated land NA
Judicial branch High Court
Labor force 88,000 (2000)
Labor force - by occupation agriculture: 22%

industry: 18%

services: 60% (1995)
Land boundaries 0 km
Land use arable land: 13.33%

permanent crops: 30%

other: 56.67% (2005)
Languages Maldivian Dhivehi (dialect of Sinhala, script derived from Arabic), English spoken by most government officials
Legal system based on Islamic law with admixtures of English common law primarily in commercial matters; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Legislative branch unicameral People's Council or Majlis (50 seats; 42 elected by popular vote, 8 appointed by the president; members serve five-year terms)

elections: last held 22 January 2005 (next to be held NA 2010)

election results: percent of vote - NA; seats - independents 50
Life expectancy at birth total population: 64.41 years

male: 63.08 years

female: 65.8 years (2006 est.)
Literacy definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 97.2%

male: 97.1%

female: 97.3% (2003 est.)
Location Southern Asia, group of atolls in the Indian Ocean, south-southwest of India
Map references Asia
Maritime claims measured from claimed archipelagic straight baselines

territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Merchant marine total: 17 ships (1000 GRT or over) 67,149 GRT/87,220 DWT

by type: cargo 13, petroleum tanker 2, refrigerated cargo 2

registered in other countries: 1 (Panama 1) (2006)
Military branches National Security Service: Security Branch (ground forces), Air Element, Coast Guard
Military expenditures - dollar figure $45.07 million (2005 est.)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP 5.5% (2005 est.)
National holiday Independence Day, 26 July (1965)
Nationality noun: Maldivian(s)

adjective: Maldivian
Natural hazards low level of islands makes them very sensitive to sea level rise
Natural resources fish
Net migration rate 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Political parties and leaders political parties were allowed to register in June 2005; the first entrants are: Adhaalath (Justice) Party or AP [Abdul Majeed Abdul BARI]; Dhivehi Rayyithunge Party (Maldivian People's Party) or DRP [Maumoon Abdul GAYOOM]; Islamic Democratic Party or IDP [Omar NASEER]; Maldivian Democratic Party or MDP [Mohamed NASHEED]
Political pressure groups and leaders various unregistered political parties
Population 359,008 (July 2006 est.)
Population below poverty line 21% NA%
Population growth rate 2.78% (2006 est.)
Radio broadcast stations AM 1, FM 1, shortwave 1 (1998)
Religions Sunni Muslim
Sex ratio at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 1.04 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.98 male(s)/female

total population: 1.05 male(s)/female (2006 est.)
Suffrage 21 years of age; universal
Telephone system general assessment: minimal domestic and international facilities

domestic: interatoll communication through microwave links; all inhabited islands are connected with telephone and fax service

international: country code - 960; satellite earth station - 3 Intelsat (Indian Ocean)
Telephones - main lines in use 32,300 (2005)
Telephones - mobile cellular 153,400 (2005)
Television broadcast stations 1 (2006)
Terrain flat, with white sandy beaches
Total fertility rate 4.9 children born/woman (2006 est.)
Unemployment rate NEGL% (2003 est.)
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