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Panama (2003)

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Panama 2003 year

Administrative divisions 9 provinces (provincias, singular - provincia) and 1 territory* (comarca); Bocas del Toro, Chiriqui, Cocle, Colon, Darien, Herrera, Los Santos, Panama, San Blas*, and Veraguas
Age structure 0-14 years: 30.6% (male 461,670; female 443,671)

15-64 years: 63.3% (male 950,089; female 924,038)

65 years and over: 6.1% (male 86,006; female 95,310) (2003 est.)
Agriculture - products bananas, rice, corn, coffee, sugarcane, vegetables; livestock; shrimp
Airports 103 (2002)
Airports - with paved runways total: 41

over 3,047 m: 1

2,438 to 3,047 m: 1

1,524 to 2,437 m: 5

914 to 1,523 m: 13

under 914 m: 21 (2002)
Airports - with unpaved runways total: 62

914 to 1,523 m: 12

under 914 m: 50 (2002)
Area total: 78,200 sq km

land: 75,990 sq km

water: 2,210 sq km
Area - comparative slightly smaller than South Carolina
Background With US backing, Panama seceded from Colombia in 1903 and promptly signed a treaty with the US allowing for the construction of a canal and US sovereignty over a strip of land on either side of the structure (the Panama Canal Zone). The Panama Canal was built by the US Army Corps of Engineers between 1904 and 1914. On 7 September 1977, an agreement was signed for the complete transfer of the Canal from the US to Panama by the end of 1999. Certain portions of the Zone and increasing responsibility over the Canal were turned over in the intervening years. With US help, dictator Manuel NORIEGA was deposed in 1989. The entire Panama Canal, the area supporting the Canal, and remaining US military bases were turned over to Panama by or on 31 December 1999.
Birth rate 20.78 births/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Budget revenues: $1.9 billion

expenditures: $2 billion, including capital expenditures of $471 million (2000 est.)
Capital Panama
Climate tropical maritime; hot, humid, cloudy; prolonged rainy season (May to January), short dry season (January to May)
Coastline 2,490 km
Constitution 11 October 1972; major reforms adopted 1978, 1983 and 1994
Country name conventional long form: Republic of Panama

conventional short form: Panama

local long form: Republica de Panama

local short form: Panama
Currency balboa (PAB); US dollar (USD)
Death rate 6.25 deaths/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Debt - external $7 billion (2002 est.)
Diplomatic representation from the US chief of mission: Ambassador Linda Ellen WATT

embassy: Avenida Balboa and Calle 37, Apartado Postal 0816-02561, Zona 5, Panama City 5

mailing address: American Embassy Panama, Unit 0945, APO AA 34002

telephone: [507] 207-7000

FAX: [507] 227-1964
Diplomatic representation in the US chief of mission: Ambassador Roberto ALFARO Estripeaut

chancery: 2862 McGill Terrace NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 483-1407

FAX: [1] (202) 483-8416

consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Houston, Miami, New Orleans, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, San Juan (Puerto Rico), Tampa
Disputes - international none
Economic aid - recipient $197.1 million (1995)
Economy - overview Panama's economy is based primarily on a well-developed services sector that accounts for three-fourths of GDP. Services include operating the Panama Canal, banking, the Colon Free Zone, insurance, container ports, flagship registry, and tourism. A slump in Colon Free Zone and agricultural exports, the global slowdown, and the withdrawal of US military forces held back economic growth in 2000-02. The government has been backing public works programs, tax reforms, new regional trade agreements, and development of tourism in order to stimulate growth.
Electricity - consumption 3.681 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports 118 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports 43 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - production 4.039 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - production by source fossil fuel: 37%

hydro: 61.3%

nuclear: 0%

other: 1.7% (2001)
Elevation extremes lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m

highest point: Volcan de Chiriqui 3,475 m
Environment - current issues water pollution from agricultural runoff threatens fishery resources; deforestation of tropical rain forest; land degradation and soil erosion threatens siltation of Panama Canal; air pollution in urban areas; mining threatens natural resources
Environment - international agreements party to: 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, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: Marine Life Conservation
Ethnic groups mestizo (mixed Amerindian and white) 70%, Amerindian and mixed (West Indian) 14%, white 10%, Amerindian 6%
Exchange rates balboas per US dollar - 1 (2002), 1 (2001), 1 (2000), 1 (1999), 1 (1998)
Executive branch chief of state: President Mireya Elisa MOSCOSO Rodriguez (since 1 September 1999); First Vice President Arturo Ulises VALLARINO (since 1 September 1999); Second Vice President Dominador "Kaiser" Baldonero BAZAN Jimenez (since 1 September 1999); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Mireya Elisa MOSCOSO Rodriguez (since 1 September 1999); First Vice President Arturo Ulises VALLARINO (since 1 September 1999); Second Vice President Dominador "Kaiser" Baldonero BAZAN Jimenez (since 1 September 1999); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president

elections: president and vice presidents elected on the same ticket by popular vote for five-year terms; election last held 2 May 1999 (next to be held NA May 2004)

election results: Mireya Elisa MOSCOSO Rodriguez elected president; percent of vote - Mireya Elisa MOSCOSO Rodriguez (PA) 44%, Martin TORRIJOS (PRD) 37%

note: government coalition - PA, MOLIRENA, Democratic Change, MORENA, PLN, PS
Exports 118 million kWh (2001)
Exports $5.8 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Exports NA (2001)
Exports - commodities bananas, shrimp, sugar, coffee, clothing (1999)
Exports - partners US 47.8%, Sweden 5.8%, Costa Rica 4.8%, Honduras 4.4% (2002)
Fiscal year calendar year
Flag description divided into four, equal rectangles; the top quadrants are white (hoist side) with a blue five-pointed star in the center and plain red; the bottom quadrants are plain blue (hoist side) and white with a red five-pointed star in the center
GDP purchasing power parity - $18.06 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector agriculture: 7%

industry: 17%

services: 76% (2001 est.)
GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $6,200 (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate 0.7% (2002 est.)
Geographic coordinates 9 00 N, 80 00 W
Geography - note strategic location on eastern end of isthmus forming land bridge connecting North and South America; controls Panama Canal that links North Atlantic Ocean via Caribbean Sea with North Pacific Ocean
Highways total: 11,400 km

paved: 3,944 km (including 30 km of expressways)

unpaved: 7,456 km (1999)
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%: 1.2%

highest 10%: 35.7% (1997)
Illicit drugs major cocaine transshipment point and primary money laundering center for narcotics revenue; money-laundering activity is especially heavy in the Colon Free Zone; offshore financial center; negligible signs of coca cultivation; monitoring of financial transactions is improving; official corruption remains a major problem
Imports 43 million kWh (2001)
Imports $6.7 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Imports NA (2001)
Imports - commodities capital goods, crude oil, foodstuffs, consumer goods, chemicals (1999)
Imports - partners US 34.3%, Colombia 5.9%, Japan 5.4%, Costa Rica 4.2%, Venezuela 4.2% (2002)
Independence 3 November 1903 (from Colombia; became independent from Spain 28 November 1821)
Industrial production growth rate 0.5% (2002 est.)
Industries construction, petroleum refining, brewing, cement and other construction materials, sugar milling
Infant mortality rate total: 21.44 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 23.59 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 19.19 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 1.1% (2001 est.)
International organization participation ECLAC, FAO, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO (correspondent), ITU, LAES, LAIA (observer), NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, RG, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) 6 (2000)
Irrigated land 320 sq km (1998 est.)
Judicial branch Supreme Court of Justice or Corte Suprema de Justicia (nine judges appointed for 10-year terms); five superior courts; three courts of appeal
Labor force 1.1 million

note: shortage of skilled labor, but an oversupply of unskilled labor (2000 est.)
Labor force - by occupation agriculture 20.8%, industry 18%, services 61.2% (1995 est.)
Land boundaries total: 555 km

border countries: Colombia 225 km, Costa Rica 330 km
Land use arable land: 6.72%

permanent crops: 2.08%

other: 91.2% (1998 est.)
Languages Spanish (official), English 14%

note: many Panamanians bilingual
Legal system based on civil law system; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court of Justice; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations
Legislative branch unicameral Legislative Assembly or Asamblea Legislativa (71 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)

elections: last held 2 May 1999 (next to be held NA May 2004)

election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PRD 34, PA 18, PDC 5, PS 4, MOLIRENA 3, PLN 3, Democratic Change 2, PRC 1, MORENA 1

note: legislators from outlying rural districts are chosen on a plurality basis while districts located in more populous towns and cities elect multiple legislators by means of a proportion-based formula
Life expectancy at birth total population: 72.32 years

male: 69.97 years

female: 74.79 years (2003 est.)
Literacy definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 92.6%

male: 93.2%

female: 91.9% (2003 est.)
Location Middle America, bordering both the Caribbean Sea and the North Pacific Ocean, between Colombia and Costa Rica
Map references Central America and the Caribbean
Maritime claims contiguous zone: 24 NM

exclusive economic zone: 200 NM

territorial sea: 12 NM
Merchant marine total: 4,860 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 122,543,755 GRT/184,910,607 DWT

ships by type: barge carrier 5, bulk 1,443, cargo 846, chemical tanker 376, combination bulk 72, combination ore/oil 17, container 588, liquefied gas 207, livestock carrier 6, multi-functional large-load carrier 12, passenger 38, passenger/cargo 3, petroleum tanker 537, railcar carrier 2, refrigerated cargo 287, roll on/roll off 107, short-sea passenger 41, specialized tanker 33, vehicle carrier 240

note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Albania 2, Angola 1, Antigua and Barbuda 1, Argentina 11, Australia 13, Austria 2, The Bahamas 5, Belgium 2, Belize 6, Brazil 6, British Virgin Islands 8, Cambodia 1, Canada 9, Chile 12, China 259, Colombia 14, Croatia 2, Cuba 20, Cyprus 3, Denmark 3, Dominican Republic 1, Ecuador 3, Egypt 16, Equatorial Guinea 1, France 9, Germany 72, Greece 523, Haiti 1, Honduras 3, Hong Kong 299, Iceland 1, India 18, Indonesia 48, Ireland 1, Israel 5, Italy 9, Japan 1,642, Kenya 1, Kuwait 2, Latvia 8, Liberia 5, Lithuania 1, Malaysia 18, Malta 2, Marshall Islands 1, Mexico 8, Monaco 112, Netherlands 19, Netherlands Antilles 1, Nigeria 3, Norway 98, Paraguay 1, Peru 15, Philippines 49, Poland 5, Portugal 7, Puerto Rico 2, Romania 7, Russia 12, Saint Kitts and Nevis 1, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 5, Saudi Arabia 4, Seychelles 1, Singapore 112, South Africa 3, South Korea 342, Spain 52, Sri Lanka 3, Sudan 1, Sweden 2, Switzerland 81, Taiwan 334, Thailand 14, Trinidad and Tobago 1, Tunisia 1, Turkey 4, Ukraine 1, UAE 54, UK 73, US 115, Venezuela 6 (2002 est.)
Military - note on 10 February 1990, the government of then President ENDARA abolished Panama's military and reformed the security apparatus by creating the Panamanian Public Forces; in October 1994, Panama's Legislative Assembly approved a constitutional amendment prohibiting the creation of a standing military force, but allowing the temporary establishment of special police units to counter acts of "external aggression"
Military branches an amendment to the Constitution abolished the armed forces, but there are security forces (Panamanian Public Forces or PPF includes the Panamanian National Police, National Maritime Service, and National Air Service)
Military expenditures - dollar figure $128 million (FY99)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP 1.3% (FY99)
Military manpower - availability males age 15-49: 797,456 (2003 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service males age 15-49: 544,967 (2003 est.)
National holiday Independence Day, 3 November (1903)
Nationality noun: Panamanian(s)

adjective: Panamanian
Natural hazards occasional severe storms and forest fires in the Darien area
Natural resources copper, mahogany forests, shrimp, hydropower
Net migration rate -0.97 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Pipelines crude oil 130 km (2001)
Political parties and leaders Arnulfista Party or PA [Mireya Elisa MOSCOSO Rodriguez]; Civic Renewal Party or PRC [Serguei DE LA ROSA]; Democratic Change [Ricardo MARTINELLI]; Democratic Revolutionary Party or PRD [Martin TORRIJOS]; National Liberal Party or PLN [Raul ARANGO Gasteazopo]; National Renovation Movement or MORENA [Pedro VALLARINO Cox]; Nationalist Republican Liberal Movement or MOLIRENA [Ramon MORALES]; Popular Party or PP (formerly Christian Democratic Party or PDC) [Ruben AROSEMENA]; Solidarity Party or PS [Samuel LEWIS Galindo]
Political pressure groups and leaders Chamber of Commerce; National Civic Crusade; National Council of Organized Workers or CONATO; National Union of Construction and Similar Workers (SUNTRACS); National Council of Private Enterprise or CONEP; Panamanian Association of Business Executives or APEDE; Panamanian Industrialists Society or SIP; Workers Confederation of the Republic of Panama or CTRP
Population 2,960,784 (July 2003 est.)
Population below poverty line 37% (1999 est.)
Population growth rate 1.36% (2003 est.)
Ports and harbors Balboa, Cristobal, Coco Solo, Manzanillo (part of Colon area), Vacamonte
Radio broadcast stations AM 101, FM 134, shortwave 0 (1998)
Railways total: 355 km

broad gauge: 76 km 1.524-m gauge

narrow gauge: 279 km 0.914-m gauge (2002)
Religions Roman Catholic 85%, Protestant 15%
Sex ratio at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 1.03 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.9 male(s)/female

total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2003 est.)
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal and compulsory
Telephone system general assessment: domestic and international facilities well developed

domestic: NA

international: 1 coaxial submarine cable; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); connected to the Central American Microwave System
Telephones - main lines in use 396,000 (1997)
Telephones - mobile cellular 17,000 (1997)
Television broadcast stations 38 (including repeaters) (1998)
Terrain interior mostly steep, rugged mountains and dissected, upland plains; coastal areas largely plains and rolling hills
Total fertility rate 2.53 children born/woman (2003 est.)
Unemployment rate 16% (2002 est.)
Waterways 882 km

note: 800 km navigable by shallow draft vessels; 82 km Panama Canal
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