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Venezuela (2001)

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Venezuela 2001 year

Administrative divisions 23 states (estados, singular - estado),1 federal district* (distrito federal), and 1 federal dependency** (dependencia federal); Amazonas, Anzoategui, Apure, Aragua, Barinas, Bolivar, Carabobo, Cojedes, Delta Amacuro, Dependencias Federales**, Distrito Federal*, Falcon, Guarico, Lara, Merida, Miranda, Monagas, Nueva Esparta, Portuguesa, Sucre, Tachira, Trujillo, Vargas, Yaracuy, Zulia

the federal dependency consists of 11 federally controlled island groups with a total of 72 individual islands
Age structure 0-14 years:
32.11% (male 3,962,517; female 3,716,880)

15-64 years:
63.17% (male 7,581,589; female 7,526,467)

65 years and over:
4.72% (male 515,687; female 613,670) (2001 est.)
Agriculture - products corn, sorghum, sugarcane, rice, bananas, vegetables, coffee; beef, pork, milk, eggs; fish
Airports 371 (2000 est.)
Airports - with paved runways total:

over 3,047 m:

2,438 to 3,047 m:

1,524 to 2,437 m:

914 to 1,523 m:

under 914 m:
17 (2000 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways total:

1,524 to 2,437 m:

914 to 1,523 m:

under 914 m:
140 (2000 est.)
Area total:
912,050 sq km

882,050 sq km

30,000 sq km
Area - comparative slightly more than twice the size of California
Background Venezuela was one of the three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Colombia in 1830 (the others being Colombia and Ecuador). For most of the first half of the 20th century, Venezuela was ruled by generally benevolent military strongmen, who promoted the oil industry and allowed for some social reforms. Democratically elected governments have held sway since 1959. Current concerns include: drug-related conflicts along the Colombian border, increasing internal drug consumption, overdependence on the petroleum industry with its price fluctuations, and irresponsible mining operations that are endangering the rain forest and indigenous peoples.
Birth rate 20.65 births/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Budget revenues:
$26.4 billion

$27 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000 est.)
Capital Caracas
Climate tropical; hot, humid; more moderate in highlands
Coastline 2,800 km
Constitution 30 December 1999
Country name conventional long form:
Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela

conventional short form:

local long form:
Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

local short form:
Currency bolivar (VEB)
Death rate 4.92 deaths/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Debt - external $34 billion (2000)
Diplomatic representation from the US chief of mission:
Ambassador Donna J. HRINAK

Calle F con Calle Suapure, Urbanizacion Colinas de Valle Arriba, Caracas 1080

mailing address:
P. O. Box 62291, Caracas 1060-A; APO AA 34037

[58] (2) 975-6411

[58] (2) 975-6710
Diplomatic representation in the US chief of mission:
Ambassador Alfredo TORO Hardy

1099 30th Street NW, Washington, DC 20007

[1] (202) 342-2214

[1] (202) 342-6820

consulate(s) general:
Boston, Chicago, Houston, Miami, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco, and San Juan (Puerto Rico)
Disputes - international claims all of Guyana west of the Essequibo (river); maritime boundary dispute with Colombia in the Gulf of Venezuela
Economic aid - recipient $35 million with more assistance likely as a result of flooding (1999)
Economy - overview The petroleum sector dominates the economy, accounting for roughly a third of GDP, around 80% of export earnings, and more than half of government operating revenues. Venezuelan officials estimate that GDP grew by 3.2% in 2000. A strong rebound in international oil prices fueled the recovery from the steep recession in 1999. Nevertheless, a weak nonoil sector and capital flight undercut the recovery. The bolivar is widely believed to be overvalued by as much as 50%. The government is still rebuilding after massive flooding and landslides in December 1999 caused an estimated $15 billion to $20 billion in damage.
Electricity - consumption 75.53 billion kWh (1999)
Electricity - exports 0 kWh (1999)
Electricity - imports 0 kWh (1999)
Electricity - production 81.215 billion kWh (1999)
Electricity - production by source fossil fuel:



0% (1999)
Elevation extremes lowest point:
Caribbean Sea 0 m

highest point:
Pico Bolivar (La Columna) 5,007 m
Environment - current issues sewage pollution of Lago de Valencia; oil and urban pollution of Lago de Maracaibo; deforestation; soil degradation; urban and industrial pollution, especially along the Caribbean coast; threat to the rainforest ecosystem from irresponsible mining operations
Environment - international agreements party to:
Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified:
Marine Dumping
Ethnic groups Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Arab, German, African, indigenous people
Exchange rates bolivares per US dollar - 699.700 (January 2001), 679.960 (2000), 605.717 (1999), 547.556 (1998), 488.635 (1997), 417.333 (1996)
Executive branch chief of state:
President Hugo CHAVEZ Frias (since 3 February 1999); Vice President Adina BASTIDAS Castillo; note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

head of government:
President Hugo CHAVEZ Frias (since 3 February 1999); Vice President Adina BASTIDAS Castillo; note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

Council of Ministers appointed by the president

president elected by popular vote for a six-year term; election last held 30 July 2000 (next to be held NA 2006)

election results:
Hugo CHAVEZ Frias elected president; percent of vote - 60%

government coalition - Patriotic Pole or Polo Patriotico consists of MVR, MAS, and PPT
Exports 0 kWh (1999)
Exports $32.8 billion (f.o.b., 2000)
Exports - commodities petroleum, bauxite and aluminum, steel, chemicals, agricultural products, basic manufactures
Exports - partners US and Puerto Rico 57%, Colombia, Brazil, Japan, Germany, Netherlands, Italy (1999)
Fiscal year calendar year
Flag description three equal horizontal bands of yellow (top), blue, and red with the coat of arms on the hoist side of the yellow band and an arc of seven white five-pointed stars centered in the blue band
GDP purchasing power parity - $146.2 billion (2000 est.)
GDP - composition by sector agriculture:


71% (1999 est.)
GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $6,200 (2000 est.)
GDP - real growth rate 3.2% (2000 est.)
Geographic coordinates 8 00 N, 66 00 W
Geography - note on major sea and air routes linking North and South America
Heliports 1 (2000 est.)
Highways total:
96,155 km

32,308 km

63,847 km (1997 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%:

highest 10%:
35.6% (1995)
Illicit drugs illicit producer of opium for the international drug trade on a small scale; however, large quantities of cocaine, heroin, and marijuana transit the country from Colombia bound for US and Europe; important money-laundering center; active eradication program primarily targeting opium; increasing signs of drug-related activities by Colombian insurgents on border
Imports 0 kWh (1999)
Imports $14.7 billion (f.o.b., 2000)
Imports - commodities raw materials, machinery and equipment, transport equipment, construction materials
Imports - partners US 53%, Japan, Colombia, Italy, Germany, France, Brazil, Canada (1999)
Independence 5 July 1811 (from Spain)
Industrial production growth rate NA
Industries petroleum, iron ore mining, construction materials, food processing, textiles, steel, aluminum, motor vehicle assembly
Infant mortality rate 25.37 deaths/1,000 live births (2001 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 13% (2000)
International organization participation CAN, Caricom (observer), CCC, CDB, ECLAC, FAO, G- 3, G-11, G-15, G-19, G-24, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, LAES, LAIA, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, OPEC, PCA, RG, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIKOM, UNU, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) 16 (2000)
Irrigated land 1,900 sq km (1993 est.)
Judicial branch Supreme Tribunal of Justice or Tribuna Suprema de Justicia (magistrates are elected by the National Assembly for a single 12-year term)
Labor force 9.9 million (1999)
Labor force - by occupation services 64%, industry 23%, agriculture 13% (1997 est.)
Land boundaries total:
4,993 km

border countries:
Brazil 2,200 km, Colombia 2,050 km, Guyana 743 km
Land use arable land:

permanent crops:

permanent pastures:

forests and woodland:

41% (1993 est.)
Languages Spanish (official), numerous indigenous dialects
Legal system based on organic laws as of July 1999; open, adversarial court system; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Legislative branch unicameral National Assembly or Asamblea Nacional; 165 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms; three seats reserved for the indigenous peoples of Venezuela

last held 30 July 2000 (next to be held NA 2005)

election results:
Pro-government: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - MVR 92, MAS 6, indigenous 3, other parties 7; Opposition: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - AD 33, COPEI 6, Justice First 5, other parties 13
Life expectancy at birth total population:
73.31 years

70.29 years

76.56 years (2001 est.)
Literacy definition:
age 15 and over can read and write

total population:


90.3% (1995 est.)
Location Northern South America, bordering the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, between Colombia and Guyana
Map references South America, Central America and the Caribbean
Maritime claims contiguous zone:
15 NM

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

exclusive economic zone:
200 NM

territorial sea:
12 NM
Merchant marine total:
36 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 490,160 GRT/897,694 DWT

ships by type:
bulk 7, cargo 10, liquefied gas 2, passenger/cargo 1, petroleum tanker 7, roll on/roll off 8, short-sea passenger 1 (2000 est.)
Military branches National Armed Forces (Fuerzas Armadas Nacionales or FAN) includes Ground Forces or Army (Fuerzas Terrestres or Ejercito), Naval Forces (Fuerzas Navales or Armada), Air Force (Fuerzas Aereas or Aviacion), Armed Forces of Cooperation or National Guard (Fuerzas Armadas de Cooperacion or Guardia Nacional)
Military expenditures - dollar figure $934 million (FY99)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP 0.9% (FY99)
Military manpower - availability males age 15-49:
6,524,809 (2001 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service males age 15-49:
4,701,062 (2001 est.)
Military manpower - military age 18 years of age
Military manpower - reaching military age annually males:
246,185 (2001 est.)
National holiday Independence Day, 5 July (1811)
Nationality noun:

Natural hazards subject to floods, rockslides, mudslides; periodic droughts
Natural resources petroleum, natural gas, iron ore, gold, bauxite, other minerals, hydropower, diamonds
Net migration rate -0.15 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Pipelines crude oil 6,370 km; petroleum products 480 km; natural gas 4,010 km
Political parties and leaders Brave Peoples Alliance or ABP [leader NA]; Democratic Action or AD [Henry RAMOS Allup]; Fifth Republic Movement or MVR [leader Luis MIQUILENA]; Homeland for All or PPT [Pablo MEDINA]; Justice First [leader NA]; Movement Toward Socialism or MAS [Felipe MUJICA]; National Convergence or Convergencia [Dr. Rafael CALDERA Rodriguez]; Radical Cause or La Causa R [Andres VELASQUEZ]; Social Christian Party or COPEI [Jose CURIEL]; Venezuela Project or PV [Henrique SALAS Ronier]
Political pressure groups and leaders FEDECAMARAS, a conservative business group; VECINOS groups; Venezuelan Confederation of Workers or CTV (labor organization dominated by the Democratic Action)
Population 23,916,810 (July 2001 est.)
Population below poverty line 67% (1997 est.)
Population growth rate 1.56% (2001 est.)
Ports and harbors Amuay, Bajo Grande, El Tablazo, La Guaira, La Salina, Maracaibo, Matanzas, Palua, Puerto Cabello, Puerto la Cruz, Puerto Ordaz, Puerto Sucre, Punta Cardon
Radio broadcast stations AM 201, FM NA (20 in Caracas), shortwave 11 (1998)
Radios 10.75 million (1997)
Railways total:
584 km (248 km privately owned)

standard gauge:
584 km 1.435-m gauge
Religions nominally Roman Catholic 96%, Protestant 2%, other 2%
Sex ratio at birth:
1.08 male(s)/female

under 15 years:
1.07 male(s)/female

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

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

total population:
1.02 male(s)/female (2001 est.)
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal
Telephone system general assessment:
modern and expanding

domestic satellite system with 3 earth stations; recent substantial improvement in telephone service in rural areas; substantial increase in digitalization of exchanges and trunk lines; installation of a national interurban fiber-optic network capable of digital multimedia services

3 submarine coaxial cables; satellite earth stations - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) and 1 PanAmSat; participating with Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia in the construction of an international fiber-optic network
Telephones - main lines in use 2,600,000.00; however, 3,500,000 were installed (1998)
Telephones - mobile cellular 2 million (1998)
Television broadcast stations 66 (plus 45 repeaters) (1997)
Terrain Andes Mountains and Maracaibo Lowlands in northwest; central plains (llanos); Guiana Highlands in southeast
Total fertility rate 2.46 children born/woman (2001 est.)
Unemployment rate 14% (2000 est.)
Waterways 7,100 km

Rio Orinoco and Lago de Maracaibo accept oceangoing vessels
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