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Coral Sea Islands (Australia-Oceania)

Introduction ::Coral Sea Islands


Scattered over more than three-quarters of a million square kilometers of ocean, the Coral Sea Islands were declared a territory of Australia in 1969. They are uninhabited except for a small meteorological staff on the Willis Islets. Automated weather stations, beacons, and a lighthouse occupy many other islands and reefs.

Geography ::Coral Sea Islands


Oceania, islands in the Coral Sea, northeast of Australia

Geographic coordinates:
18 00 S, 152 00 E

Map references:



total: less than 3 sq km country comparison to the world: 248 land: less than 3 sq km

water: 0 sq km

note: includes numerous small islands and reefs scattered over a sea area of about 780,000 sq km with the Willis Islets the most important

Area - comparative:

Land boundaries:

0 km


3,095 km

Maritime claims:

territorial sea: 3 nm

exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm




sand and coral reefs and islands (or cays)

Elevation extremes:

lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m

highest point: unnamed location on Cato Island 6 m

Natural resources:

Land use:

arable land: 0%

permanent crops: 0%

other: 100% (mostly grass or scrub cover) (2005)

Irrigated land:

0 sq km

Natural hazards:

occasional tropical cyclones

Environment - current issues:

no permanent fresh water resources

Geography - note:

important nesting area for birds and turtles

People ::Coral Sea Islands


no indigenous inhabitants

note: there is a staff of three to four at the meteorological station on Willis Island (July 2007 est.)

Government ::Coral Sea Islands

Country name:

conventional long form: Coral Sea Islands Territory

conventional short form: Coral Sea Islands

Dependency status:

territory of Australia; administered from Canberra by the Australian Government Attorney-General's Department

Legal system:

the laws of Australia where applicable apply

Executive branch:

administered from Canberra by the Australian Attorney-General's Department

Diplomatic representation in the US:

none (territory of Australia)

Diplomatic representation from the US:

none (territory of Australia)

Flag description:

the flag of Australia is used

Economy ::Coral Sea Islands

Economy - overview:

no economic activity

Communications ::Coral Sea Islands

Communications - note:

there are automatic weather stations on many of the isles and reefs relaying data to the mainland

Transportation ::Coral Sea Islands

Ports and terminals:

none; offshore anchorage only

Military ::Coral Sea Islands

Military - note:

defense is the responsibility of Australia

Transnational Issues ::Coral Sea Islands

Disputes - international:



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