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Honduras, See : Flags, Maps

Honduras (Central America and Caribbean)

Introduction ::Honduras

Background:

Once part of Spain's vast empire in the New World, Honduras became an independent nation in 1821. After two and a half decades of mostly military rule, a freely elected civilian government came to power in 1982. During the 1980s, Honduras proved a haven for anti-Sandinista contras fighting the Marxist Nicaraguan Government and an ally to Salvadoran Government forces fighting leftist guerrillas. The country was devastated by Hurricane Mitch in 1998, which killed about 5,600 people and caused approximately $2 billion in damage. Since then, the economy has slowly rebounded.

Geography ::Honduras

Location:

Central America, bordering the Caribbean Sea, between Guatemala and Nicaragua and bordering the Gulf of Fonseca (North Pacific Ocean), between El Salvador and Nicaragua

Geographic coordinates:
15 00 N, 86 30 W

Map references:

Central America and the Caribbean

Area:

total: 112,090 sq km country comparison to the world: 102 land: 111,890 sq km

water: 200 sq km

Area - comparative:

slightly larger than Tennessee

Land boundaries:

total: 1,520 km

border countries: Guatemala 256 km, El Salvador 342 km, Nicaragua 922 km

Coastline:

820 km

Maritime claims:

territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: natural extension of territory or to 200 nm

Climate:

subtropical in lowlands, temperate in mountains

Terrain:

mostly mountains in interior, narrow coastal plains

Elevation extremes:

lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m

highest point: Cerro Las Minas 2,870 m

Natural resources:

timber, gold, silver, copper, lead, zinc, iron ore, antimony, coal, fish, hydropower

Land use:

arable land: 9.53%

permanent crops: 3.21%

other: 87.26% (2005)

Irrigated land:

800 sq km (2003)

Total renewable water resources:

95.9 cu km (2000)

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):

total: 0.86 cu km/yr (8%/12%/80%)

per capita: 119 cu m/yr (2000)

Natural hazards:

frequent, but generally mild, earthquakes; extremely susceptible to damaging hurricanes and floods along the Caribbean coast

Environment - current issues:

urban population expanding; deforestation results from logging and the clearing of land for agricultural purposes; further land degradation and soil erosion hastened by uncontrolled development and improper land use practices such as farming of marginal lands; mining activities polluting Lago de Yojoa (the country's largest source of fresh water), as well as several rivers and streams, with heavy metals

Environment - international agreements:

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note:

has only a short Pacific coast but a long Caribbean shoreline, including the virtually uninhabited eastern Mosquito Coast

People ::Honduras

Population:

7,989,415 country comparison to the world: 93 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2010 est.)

Age structure:

0-14 years: 38% (male 1,521,006/female 1,457,790)

15-64 years: 58.4% (male 2,290,300/female 2,280,848)

65 years and over: 3.6% (male 127,187/female 156,565) (2010 est.)

Median age:

total: 20.7 years

male: 20.3 years

female: 21.1 years (2010 est.)

Population growth rate:

1.935% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 62

Birth rate:

25.61 births/1,000 population (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 59

Death rate:

4.99 deaths/1,000 population (July 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 187

Net migration rate:

-1.27 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 165

Urbanization:

urban population: 48% of total population (2008)

rate of urbanization: 2.9% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)

Sex ratio:

at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female

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

65 years and over: 0.81 male(s)/female

total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2010 est.)

Infant mortality rate:

total: 21.04 deaths/1,000 live births country comparison to the world: 97 male: 23.82 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 18.12 deaths/1,000 live births (2010 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:

total population: 70.51 years country comparison to the world: 143 male: 68.82 years

female: 72.28 years (2010 est.)

Total fertility rate:

3.17 children born/woman (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 59

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:

0.7% (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 65

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:

28,000 (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 71

HIV/AIDS - deaths:

1,900 (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 60

Major infectious diseases:

degree of risk: high

food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever

vectorborne diseases: dengue fever and malaria

water contact disease: leptospirosis (2009)

Nationality:

noun: Honduran(s)

adjective: Honduran

Ethnic groups:

mestizo (mixed Amerindian and European) 90%, Amerindian 7%, black 2%, white 1%

Religions:

Roman Catholic 97%, Protestant 3%

Languages:

Spanish (official), Amerindian dialects

Literacy:

definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 80%

male: 79.8%

female: 80.2% (2001 census)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):

total: 11 years

male: 11 years

female: 12 years (2008)

Education expenditures:

3.8% of GDP (1991) country comparison to the world: 119

Government ::Honduras

Country name:

conventional long form: Republic of Honduras

conventional short form: Honduras

local long form: Republica de Honduras

local short form: Honduras

Government type:

democratic constitutional republic

Capital:

name: Tegucigalpa

geographic coordinates: 14 06 N, 87 13 W

time difference: UTC-6 (1 hour behind Washington, DC during Standard Time)

daylight saving time: +1hr, begins second Sunday in March; ends first Sunday in November

Administrative divisions:

18 departments (departamentos, singular - departamento); Atlantida,
Choluteca, Colon, Comayagua, Copan, Cortes, El Paraiso, Francisco
Morazan, Gracias a Dios, Intibuca, Islas de la Bahia, La Paz,
Lempira, Ocotepeque, Olancho, Santa Barbara, Valle, Yoro

Independence:

15 September 1821 (from Spain)

National holiday:

Independence Day, 15 September (1821)

Constitution:

11 January 1982, effective 20 January 1982; amended many times

Legal system:

rooted in Roman and Spanish civil law with increasing influence of English common law; recent judicial reforms include abandoning Napoleonic legal codes in favor of the oral adversarial system; accepts ICJ jurisdiction with reservations

Suffrage:

18 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branch:

chief of state: President Porfirio LOBO Sosa (since 27 January 2010); Vice President Maria Antonieta Guillen de BOGRAN (since 27 January 2010); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Porfirio LOBO Sosa (since 27 January 2010); Vice President Maria Antonieta Guillen de BOGRAN (since 27 January 2010)

cabinet: Cabinet appointed by president (For more information visit the World Leaders website ) elections: president elected by popular vote for a four-year term; election last held on 29 November 2009 (next to be held in November 2013)

election results: Porfirio "Pepe" LOBO Sosa elected president; percent of vote - Porfirio "Pepe" LOBO Sosa 56.3%, Elvin SANTOS Lozano 38.1%, other 5.6%

Legislative branch:

unicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional (128 seats; members elected proportionally by department to serve four-year terms)

elections: last held on 29 November 2009 (next to be held in November 2013)

election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PNH 71, PL 45, PDC 5, PUD 4, PINU 3

Judicial branch:

Supreme Court of Justice or Corte Suprema de Justicia (15 judges are elected for seven-year terms by the National Congress)

Political parties and leaders:

Christian Democratic Party or PDC [Felicito AVILA Ordonez];
Democratic Unification Party or PUD [Cesar HAM]; Liberal Party or PL
[Roberto MICHELETTI Bain]; National Party or PN [Antonio ALVAREZ
Arias]; Social Democratic Innovation and Unity Party or PINU [Jorge
Rafael AGUILAR Paredes]

Political pressure groups and leaders:

Beverage and Related Industries Syndicate or STIBYS; Committee for
the Defense of Human Rights in Honduras or CODEH; Confederation of
Honduran Workers or CTH; Coordinating Committee of Popular
Organizations or CCOP; General Workers Confederation or CGT;
Honduran Council of Private Enterprise or COHEP; National
Association of Honduran Campesinos or ANACH; National Union of
Campesinos or UNC; Popular Bloc or BP; United Confederation of
Honduran Workers or CUTH

International organization participation:

BCIE, CACM, FAO, G-11, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM,
IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC (suspended),
IOM, ISO (subscriber), ITSO, ITU, ITUC, LAES, LAIA (observer), MIGA,
MINURSO, NAM, OAS (suspended), OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, PetroCaribe, RG
(suspended), SICA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, Union Latina, UNWTO,
UPU, WCO (suspended), WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US:

chief of mission: Ambassador Jorge Ramon HERNANDEZ Alcerro

chancery: Suite 4-M, 3007 Tilden Street NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 966-2604
FAX: [1] (202) 966-9751

consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, Phoenix, San Francisco

honorary consulate(s): Jacksonville

Diplomatic representation from the US:

chief of mission: Ambassador Hugo LLORENS

embassy: Avenida La Paz, Apartado Postal No. 3453, Tegucigalpa

mailing address: American Embassy, APO AA 34022, Tegucigalpa

telephone: [504] 236-9320, 238-5114
FAX: [504] 238-4357

Flag description:

three equal horizontal bands of blue (top), white, and blue, with five blue, five-pointed stars arranged in an X pattern centered in the white band; the stars represent the members of the former Federal Republic of Central America - Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua; the blue bands symbolize the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea; the white band represents the land between the two bodies of water and the peace and prosperity of its people

note: similar to the flag of El Salvador, which features a round emblem encircled by the words REPUBLICA DE EL SALVADOR EN LA AMERICA CENTRAL centered in the white band; also similar to the flag of Nicaragua, which features a triangle encircled by the words REPUBLICA DE NICARAGUA on top and AMERICA CENTRAL on the bottom, centered in the white band

National anthem:

name: "Himno Nacional de Honduras" (National Anthem of Honduras)

lyrics/music: Augusto Constancio COELLO/Carlos HARTLING

note: adopted 1915; the anthem's seven verses chronicle Honduran history; on official occasions, only the chorus and last verse are sung

Economy ::Honduras

Economy - overview:

Honduras, the second poorest country in Central America, suffers from extraordinarily unequal distribution of income, as well as high underemployment. While historically dependent on the export of bananas and coffee, Honduras has diversified its export base to include apparel and automobile wire harnessing. Nearly half of Honduras's economic activity is directly tied to the US, with exports to the US equivalent to 30% of GDP and remittances for another 20%. The US-Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) came into force in 2006 and has helped foster foriegn direct investment, but physical and political insecurity may deter potential investors; about 70% of FDI is from US firms. The economy registered marginally positive economic growth in 2010, insufficient to improve living standards for the nearly 60% of the population in poverty. The LOBO administration inherited a difficult fiscal position with off-budget debts accrued in previous administrations and government salaries nearly equivalent to tax collections. His government has displayed a commitment to improving tax collection and cutting expenditures. This enabled Tegucigalpa to secure an IMF Precautionary Stand-By agreement in October 2010. The IMF agreement has helped renew multilateral and bilateral donor confidence in Honduras following the ZELAYA administration's economic mismanagement and the political coup.

GDP (purchasing power parity):

$33.77 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 104 $32.94 billion (2009 est.)

$33.65 billion (2008 est.)

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate):

$15.34 billion (2010 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:

2.5% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 140 -2.1% (2009 est.)

4.2% (2008 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP):

$4,200 (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 158 $4,200 (2009 est.)

$4,400 (2008 est.)

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector:

agriculture: 12.4%

industry: 26.9%

services: 60.8% (2010 est.)

Labor force:

3.394 million (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 98

Labor force - by occupation:

agriculture: 39.2%

industry: 20.9%

services: 39.8% (2005 est.)

Unemployment rate:

5.1% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 48 3.2% (2009 est.)

note: about 36% are unemployed or underemployed

Population below poverty line:

65% (2010)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:

lowest 10%: 0.7%

highest 10%: 42.2% (2006)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:

53.8 (2003) country comparison to the world: 15 56.3 (1998)

Investment (gross fixed):

23.3% of GDP (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 54

Public debt:

26.1% of GDP (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 93 23.7% of GDP (2009 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

4.6% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 136 5.5% (2009 est.)

Central bank discount rate:

NA% (31 December 2009)

NA% (31 December 2008)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:

19.16% (31 December 2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 28 17.94% (31 December 2008 est.)

Stock of narrow money:

$1.296 billion (31 December 2010 est) country comparison to the world: 129 $1.564 billion (31 December 2009 est)

Stock of broad money:

$7.618 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 110 $7.064 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of domestic credit:

$7.581 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 105 $7.029 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:
$NA

Agriculture - products:

bananas, coffee, citrus, corn, African palm; beef; timber; shrimp, tilapia, lobster

Industries:

sugar, coffee, woven and knit apparel, wood products, cigars

Industrial production growth rate:

2.4% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 124

Electricity - production:

6.58 billion kWh (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 103

Electricity - consumption:

6.54 billion kWh country comparison to the world: 102 note: approximately 1.5 billion kWh in transmission and distribution losses (2009 est.)

Electricity - exports:

0 kWh (2008 est.)

Electricity - imports:

11.8 million kWh (2007 est.)

Oil - production:

0 bbl/day (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 186

Oil - consumption:

56,000 bbl/day (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 95

Oil - exports:

0 bbl/day (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 147

Oil - imports:

46,130 bbl/day (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 88

Oil - proved reserves:

0 bbl (1 January 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 170

Natural gas - production:

0 cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 100

Natural gas - consumption:

0 cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 144

Natural gas - exports:

0 cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 172

Natural gas - imports:

0 cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 161

Natural gas - proved reserves:

0 cu m (1 January 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 168

Current account balance:

-$1.048 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 139 -$1.327 billion (2009 est.)

Exports:

$5.879 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 105 $5.09 billion (2009 est.)

Exports - commodities:

apparel, coffee, shrimp, wire harnessing, cigars, bananas, gold, palm oil, fruit, lobster, lumber

Exports - partners:

US 59.6%, El Salvador 5.61%, Guatemala 5.28%, Mexico 4.19%, Germany 4.04% (2009)

Imports:

$8.878 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 94 $5.924 billion (2009 est.)

Imports - commodities:

machinery and transport equipment, industrial raw materials, chemical products, fuels, foodstuffs

Imports - partners:

US 46.81%, Guatemala 8.92%, El Salvador 7.13%, Mexico 5.54%, Costa
Rica 4.91% (2009)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:

$2.302 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 92 $2.127 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Debt - external:

$3.54 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 120 $3.311 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Exchange rates:

lempiras (HNL) per US dollar - 18.9 (2010), 18.895 (2009), 18.983 (2008), 18.9 (2007), 18.895 (2006)

Communications ::Honduras

Telephones - main lines in use:

830,000 (2009) country comparison to the world: 84

Telephones - mobile cellular:

7.714 million (2009) country comparison to the world: 75

Telephone system:

general assessment: the number of fixed-line connections are increasing but still limited; competition among multiple providers of mobile-cellular services is contributing to a sharp increase in the number of subscribers

domestic: beginning in 2003, private sub-operators allowed to provide fixed-lines in order to expand telephone coverage contributing to an increase in fixed-line teledensity to roughly 10 per 100 persons; mobile-cellular subscribership reached 100 per 100 persons in 2009

international: country code - 504; landing point for both the Americas Region Caribbean Ring System (ARCOS-1) and the MAYA-1 fiber optic submarine cable system that together provide connectivity to South and Central America, parts of the Caribbean, and the US; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); connected to Central American Microwave System

Broadcast media:

multiple privately-owned terrestrial television networks, supplemented by multiple cable TV networks; Radio Honduras is the lone government-owned radio network; roughly 300 privately-owned radio stations (2007)

Internet country code:

.hn

Internet hosts:

16,075 (2010) country comparison to the world: 115

Internet users:

731,700 (2009) country comparison to the world: 108

Transportation ::Honduras

Airports:

104 (2010) country comparison to the world: 56

Airports - with paved runways:

total: 12

2,438 to 3,047 m: 3

1,524 to 2,437 m: 2

914 to 1,523 m: 4

under 914 m: 3 (2010)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

total: 92

1,524 to 2,437 m: 2

914 to 1,523 m: 16

under 914 m: 74 (2010)

Railways:

total: 75 km country comparison to the world: 128 narrow gauge: 75 km 1.067-m gauge (2009)

Roadways:

total: 14,239 km country comparison to the world: 123 paved: 3,159 km

unpaved: 11,080 km (1,420 km summer only) (2009)

Waterways:

465 km (most navigable only by small craft) (2010) country comparison to the world: 86

Merchant marine:

total: 104 country comparison to the world: 49 by type: bulk carrier 8, cargo 50, carrier 2, chemical tanker 7, container 1, passenger 3, passenger/cargo 2, petroleum tanker 22, refrigerated cargo 6, roll on/roll off 3

foreign-owned: 49 (Bahrain 5, Canada 1, China 2, Egypt 2, Greece 4,
Hong Kong 1, Israel 1, Japan 4, Lebanon 2, Mexico 1, Montenegro 2,
Panama 1, Singapore 12, South Korea 6, Taiwan 2, Tanzania 1, UK 1,
Vietnam 1) (2010)

Ports and terminals:

La Ceiba, Puerto Cortes, San Lorenzo, Tela

Military ::Honduras

Military branches:

Army, Navy (includes Naval Infantry), Honduran Air Force (Fuerza
Aerea Hondurena, FAH) (2008)

Military service age and obligation:

18 years of age for voluntary 2 to 3-year military service (2004)

Manpower available for military service:

males age 16-49: 1,989,556

females age 16-49: 1,939,462 (2010 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:

males age 16-49: 1,483,292

females age 16-49: 1,502,788 (2010 est.)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:

male: 94,501

female: 90,757 (2010 est.)

Military expenditures:

0.6% of GDP (2006 est.) country comparison to the world: 156

Transnational Issues ::Honduras

Disputes - international:

International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled on the delimitation of "bolsones" (disputed areas) along the El Salvador-Honduras border in 1992 with final settlement by the parties in 2006 after an Organization of American States (OAS) survey and a further ICJ ruling in 2003; the 1992 ICJ ruling advised a tripartite resolution to a maritime boundary in the Gulf of Fonseca with consideration of Honduran access to the Pacific; El Salvador continues to claim tiny Conejo Island, not mentioned in the ICJ ruling, off Honduras in the Gulf of Fonseca; Honduras claims the Belizean-administered Sapodilla Cays off the coast of Belize in its constitution, but agreed to a joint ecological park around the cays should Guatemala consent to a maritime corridor in the Caribbean under the OAS-sponsored 2002 Belize-Guatemala Differendum; memorials and countermemorials were filed by the parties in Nicaragua's 1999 and 2001 proceedings against Honduras and Colombia at the ICJ over the maritime boundary and territorial claims in the western Caribbean Sea - final public hearings are scheduled for 2007

Illicit drugs:

transshipment point for drugs and narcotics; illicit producer of cannabis, cultivated on small plots and used principally for local consumption; corruption is a major problem; some money-laundering activity

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