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Malta (2003)

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Malta 2003 year

Administrative divisions none (administered directly from Valletta); note - Local Councils carry out administrative orders
Age structure 0-14 years: 19.5% (male 40,448; female 37,623)

15-64 years: 67.5% (male 136,221; female 134,142)

65 years and over: 13% (male 21,730; female 30,256) (2003 est.)
Agriculture - products potatoes, cauliflower, grapes, wheat, barley, tomatoes, citrus, cut flowers, green peppers; pork, milk, poultry, eggs
Airports 1 (2002)
Airports - with paved runways total: 1

over 3,047 m: 1 (2002)
Area total: 316 sq km

land: 316 sq km

water: 0 sq km
Area - comparative slightly less than twice the size of Washington, DC
Background Great Britain formally acquired possession of Malta in 1814. The island staunchly supported the UK through both World Wars and remained in the Commonwealth when it became independent in 1964. A decade later Malta became a republic. Since about the mid-1980s, the island has become a freight transshipment point, financial center, and tourist destination. It is an official candidate for EU membership.
Birth rate 12.75 births/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Budget revenues: $1.5 billion

expenditures: $1.6 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000)
Capital Valletta
Climate Mediterranean with mild, rainy winters and hot, dry summers
Coastline 196.8 km (does not include 56.01 km for the island of Gozo)
Constitution 1964 constitution substantially amended on 13 December 1974 and again in 1987
Country name conventional long form: Republic of Malta

conventional short form: Malta

local long form: Repubblika ta' Malta

local short form: Malta
Currency Maltese lira (MTL)
Death rate 7.8 deaths/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Debt - external $130 million (1997)
Diplomatic representation from the US chief of mission: Ambassador Anthony H. GIOIA

embassy: 3rd Floor, Development House, Saint Anne Street, Floriana, Malta VLT 01

mailing address: P. O. Box 535, Valletta, Malta

telephone: [356] 21-235-960

FAX: [356] 2124-3229
Diplomatic representation in the US chief of mission: Ambassador John LOWELL

chancery: 2017 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 462-3611, 3612

FAX: [1] (202) 387-5470

consulate(s): New York
Disputes - international none
Economic aid - recipient $NA
Economy - overview Major resources are limestone, a favorable geographic location, and a productive labor force. Malta produces only about 20% of its food needs, has limited fresh water supplies, and has no domestic energy sources. The economy is dependent on foreign trade, manufacturing (especially electronics and textiles), and tourism. Malta is privatizing state-controlled firms and liberalizing markets in order to prepare for membership in the European Union. The island remains divided politically, however, over the question of joining the EU. Continued sluggishness in the global economy is holding back exports, tourism, and overall growth.
Electricity - consumption 1.644 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports 0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports 0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - production 1.768 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - production by source fossil fuel: 100%

hydro: 0%

nuclear: 0%

other: 0% (2001)
Elevation extremes lowest point: Mediterranean Sea 0 m

highest point: Ta'Dmejrek 253 m (near Dingli)
Environment - current issues very limited natural fresh water resources; increasing reliance on desalination
Environment - international agreements party to: Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Ethnic groups Maltese (descendants of ancient Carthaginians and Phoenicians, with strong elements of Italian and other Mediterranean stock)
Exchange rates Maltese liri per US dollar - 0.43 (2002), 0.45 (2001), 0.44 (2000), 0.4 (1999), 0.39 (1998)
Executive branch chief of state: President Guido DE MARCO (since 4 April 1999)

head of government: Prime Minister Eddie FENECH ADAMI (since 6 September 1998); Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence GONZI (since 4 April 1999)

cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister

elections: president elected by the House of Representatives for a five-year term; election last held NA April 1999 (next to be held by April 2004); following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or leader of a majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the president for a five-year term; the deputy prime minister is appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister

election results: Guido DE MARCO elected president; percent of House of Representatives vote - 54%
Exports 0 kWh (2001)
Exports $2 billion f.o.b. (2001)
Exports NA (2001)
Exports - commodities machinery and transport equipment, manufactures
Exports - partners Singapore 17.3%, US 11.4%, UK 9.4%, Germany 9%, France 7.2%, China 6.5%, Italy 6% (2002)
Fiscal year 1 April - 31 March
Flag description two equal vertical bands of white (hoist side) and red; in the upper hoist-side corner is a representation of the George Cross, edged in red
GDP purchasing power parity - $6.818 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector agriculture: 2.8%

industry: 25.5%

services: 71.7% (1999)
GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $17,200 (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate 1.2% (2002 est.)
Geographic coordinates 35 50 N, 14 35 E
Geography - note the country comprises an archipelago, with only the three largest islands (Malta, Ghawdex or Gozo, and Kemmuna or Comino) being inhabited; numerous bays provide good harbors; Malta and Tunisia are discussing the commercial exploitation of the continental shelf between their countries, particularly for oil exploration
Highways total: 2,254 km

paved: 1,972 km

unpaved: 282 km (2000)
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%: NA%

highest 10%: NA%
Illicit drugs minor transshipment point for hashish from North Africa to Western Europe
Imports 0 kWh (2001)
Imports $2.8 billion f.o.b. (2001)
Imports NA (2001)
Imports - commodities machinery and transport equipment, manufactured and semi-manufactured goods; food, drink, and tobacco
Imports - partners Italy 18.3%, France 12.1%, South Korea 11.3%, UK 7.5%, Singapore 5.3%, Germany 5.2%, Japan 5%, US 4.6%, Spain 4.2% (2002)
Independence 21 September 1964 (from UK)
Industrial production growth rate NA%
Industries tourism; electronics, ship building and repair, construction; food and beverages, textiles, footwear, clothing, tobacco
Infant mortality rate total: 5.62 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 5.87 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 5.34 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 2.4% (2002 est.)
International organization participation C, CE, EBRD, ECE, EU (applicant), FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IFAD, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO, ITU, NAM, OPCW, OSCE, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) 6 (2002)
Irrigated land 20 sq km (1998 est.)
Judicial branch Constitutional Court; Court of Appeal; judges for both courts are appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister
Labor force 160,000 (2002 est.)
Labor force - by occupation industry 24%, services 71%, agriculture 5% (1999 est.)
Land boundaries 0 km
Land use arable land: 31.25%

permanent crops: 3.13%

other: 65.62% (1998 est.)
Languages Maltese (official), English (official)
Legal system based on English common law and Roman civil law; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations
Legislative branch unicameral House of Representatives (usually 65 seats; note - additional seats are given to the party with the largest popular vote to ensure a legislative majority; members are elected by popular vote on the basis of proportional representation to serve five-year terms)

elections: last held 12 April 2003 (next to be held by April 2008)

election results: percent of vote by party - PN 51.7%, MLP 47.6%, AD 0.7%; seats by party - PN 34, MLP 31
Life expectancy at birth total population: 78.43 years

male: 75.94 years

female: 81.14 years (2003 est.)
Literacy definition: age 10 and over can read and write

total population: 92.8%

male: 92%

female: 93.6% (2003 est.)
Location Southern Europe, islands in the Mediterranean Sea, south of Sicily (Italy)
Map references Europe
Maritime claims contiguous zone: 24 NM

continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation

exclusive fishing zone: 25 NM

territorial sea: 12 NM
Merchant marine total: 1,234 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 25,885,128 GRT/42,467,864 DWT

ships by type: bulk 459, cargo 280, chemical tanker 45, combination bulk 10, combination ore/oil 10, container 80, liquefied gas 3, livestock carrier 3, multi-functional large-load carrier 1, passenger 6, passenger/cargo 1, petroleum tanker 236, refrigerated cargo 37, roll on/roll off 41, short-sea passenger 7, vehicle carrier 15

note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Australia 4, Austria 6, Bangladesh 1, Belgium 3, Bulgaria 19, Canada 2, China 16, Croatia 14, Cuba 1, Cyprus 7, Denmark 3, Estonia 5, Finland 1, Germany 54, Greece 627, Hong Kong 12, Iceland 3, India 10, Iran 2, Israel 26, Italy 36, Japan 2, Latvia 24, Lebanon 6, Monaco 29, Netherlands 10, Nigeria 2, Norway 43, Poland 29, Portugal 2, Romania 15, Russia 85, Saudi Arabia 1, Slovenia 2, South Korea 5, Spain 1, Switzerland 54, Syria 4, Turkey 84, Ukraine 25, UAE 3, UK 4, US 10 (2002 est.)
Military branches Armed Forces (including land forces [with subordinate air squadron and maritime squadron] and the Revenue Security Corps), Maltese Police Force
Military expenditures - dollar figure $60 million (2000 est.)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP 1.7% (2000)
Military manpower - availability males age 15-49: 99,312 (2003 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service males age 15-49: 79,080 (2003 est.)
National holiday Independence Day, 21 September (1964)
Nationality noun: Maltese (singular and plural)

adjective: Maltese
Natural hazards NA
Natural resources limestone, salt, arable land
Net migration rate 2.34 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Political parties and leaders Alternativa Demokratika/Alliance for Social Justice or AD [Harry VASSALLO]; Malta Labor Party or MLP [Alfred SANT]; Nationalist Party or PN [Edward FENECH ADAMI]
Political pressure groups and leaders NA
Population 400,420 (July 2003 est.)
Population below poverty line NA%
Population growth rate 0.73% (2003 est.)
Ports and harbors Marsaxlokk, Valletta
Radio broadcast stations AM 1, FM 18, shortwave 6 (1999)
Railways 0 km
Religions Roman Catholic 98%
Sex ratio at birth: 1.09 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.08 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.72 male(s)/female

total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2003 est.)
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal
Telephone system general assessment: automatic system satisfies normal requirements

domestic: submarine cable and microwave radio relay between islands

international: 2 submarine cables; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)
Telephones - main lines in use 187,000 (1997)
Telephones - mobile cellular 17,691 (1997)
Television broadcast stations 6 (2000)
Terrain mostly low, rocky, flat to dissected plains; many coastal cliffs
Total fertility rate 1.91 children born/woman (2003 est.)
Unemployment rate 7% (2002 est.)
Waterways none
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