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Introduction - Nauru:

BackgroundThe exact origins of the Nauruans are unclear, since their language does not resemble any other in the Pacific. The island was annexed by Germany in 1888 and its phosphate deposits began to be mined early in the 20th century by a German-British consortium. Nauru was occupied by Australian forces in World War I and subsequently became a League of Nations mandate. After the Second World War - and a brutal occupation by Japan - Nauru became a UN trust territory. It achieved its independence in 1968 and joined the UN in 1999 as the worlds smallest independent republic.

Location - Nauru:
LocationOceania, island in the South Pacific Ocean, south of the Marshall Islands

Geographic coordinates0 32 S, 166 55 E

Map referencesOceania

Areatotal: 21 sq km
land: 21 sq km
water: 0 sq km

Area comparativeabout 0.1 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries0 km

Coastline30 km

Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climatetropical with a monsoonal pattern; rainy season (November to February)

Terrainsandy beach rises to fertile ring around raised coral reefs with phosphate plateau in center

Elevation extremeslowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
highest point: unnamed location along plateau rim 61 m

Natural resourcesphosphates, fish

Land usearable land: 0%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 100% (2005)

Irrigated landNA

Natural hazardsperiodic droughts

Environment current issueslimited natural fresh water resources, roof storage tanks collect rainwater, but mostly dependent on a single, aging desalination plant; intensive phosphate mining during the past 90 years - mainly by a UK, Australia, and NZ consortium - has left the central 90% of Nauru a wasteland and threatens limited remaining land resources

Environment international agreementsparty to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography noteNauru is one of the three great phosphate rock islands in the Pacific Ocean - the others are Banaba (Ocean Island) in Kiribati and Makatea in French Polynesia; only 53 km south of Equator

People - Nauru:
Population13,528 (July 2007 est.)

Age structure0-14 years: 36.4% (male 2,508/female 2,410)
15-64 years: 61.6% (male 4,111/female 4,224)
65 years and over: 2% (male 144/female 131) (2007 est.)

Median agetotal: 21 years
male: 20.4 years
female: 21.5 years (2007 est.)

Population growth rate1.781% (2007 est.)

Birth rate24.47 births/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Death rate6.65 deaths/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Net migration rate0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Sex ratioat birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.041 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.973 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 1.099 male(s)/female
total population: 1 male(s)/female (2007 est.)

Infant mortality ratetotal: 9.6 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 12.07 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 7.02 deaths/1,000 live births (2007 est.)

Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 63.44 years
male: 59.85 years
female: 67.21 years (2007 est.)

Total fertility rate3.02 children born/woman (2007 est.)

Hiv aids adult prevalence rateNA

Hiv aids people living with hiv aidsNA

Hiv aids deathsNA

Nationalitynoun: Nauruan(s)
adjective: Nauruan

Ethnic groupsNauruan 58%, other Pacific Islander 26%, Chinese 8%, European 8%

ReligionsChristian (two-thirds Protestant, one-third Roman Catholic)

LanguagesNauruan (official; a distinct Pacific Island language), English widely understood, spoken, and used for most government and commercial purposes

Literacydefinition: NA
total population: NA
male: NA
female: NA

Government - Nauru:
Country nameconventional long form: Republic of Nauru
conventional short form: Nauru
local long form: Republic of Nauru
local short form: Nauru
former: Pleasant Island

Government typerepublic

Capitalno official capital; government offices in Yaren District
time difference: UTC+12 (17 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions14 districts; Aiwo, Anabar, Anetan, Anibare, Baiti, Boe, Buada, Denigomodu, Ewa, Ijuw, Meneng, Nibok, Uaboe, Yaren

Independence31 January 1968 (from the Australia-, NZ-, and UK-administered UN trusteeship)

National holidayIndependence Day, 31 January (1968)

Constitution29 January 1968; amended 17 May 1968 (Constitution Day)

Legal systemacts of the Nauru Parliament and British common law; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations

Suffrage20 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branchchief of state: President Ludwig SCOTTY (since 22 June 2004); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
head of government: President Ludwig SCOTTY (since 22 June 2004)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president from among the members of Parliament
elections: president elected by Parliament for a three-year term; election last held 28 August 2007 (next to be held in 2010)
election results: Ludwig SCOTTY 14, Marcos STEVEN 3

Legislative branchunicameral Parliament (18 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve three-year terms)
elections: last held 25 August 2007 (next to be held in 2010)
election results: percent of vote - NA; seats - independents 18; note - 15 of 18 incumbents reelected

Judicial branchSupreme Court

Political parties and leadersDemocratic Party [Kennan ADEANG]; Nauru Party (informal); Nauru First (Naoero Amo) Party; note - loose multiparty system

Political pressure groups and leadersNA

International organization participationACP, AsDB, C, FAO, ICAO, ICCt, Interpol, IOC, ITU, OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, SPC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UPU, WHO

Diplomatic representation in the uschief of mission: Ambassador Vinci Niel CLODUMAR
chancery: 800 2nd Avenue, Suite 400 D, New York, NY 10017
telephone: [1] (212) 937-0074
FAX: [1] (212) 937-0079
consulate(s): Agana (Guam)

Diplomatic representation from the usthe US does not have an embassy in Nauru; the US Ambassador to Fiji is accredited to Nauru

Flag descriptionblue with a narrow, horizontal, yellow stripe across the center and a large white 12-pointed star below the stripe on the hoist side; the star indicates the countrys location in relation to the Equator (the yellow stripe) and the 12 points symbolize the 12 original tribes of Nauru

Economy - Nauru:
Economy overviewRevenues of this tiny island have traditionally come from exports of phosphates, now significantly depleted. An Australian company in 2005 entered into an agreement intended to exploit remaining supplies. Few other resources exist with most necessities being imported, mainly from Australia, its former occupier and later major source of support. The rehabilitation of mined land and the replacement of income from phosphates are serious long-term problems. In anticipation of the exhaustion of Naurus phosphate deposits, substantial amounts of phosphate income were invested in trust funds to help cushion the transition and provide for Naurus economic future. As a result of heavy spending from the trust funds, the government faces virtual bankruptcy. To cut costs the government has frozen wages and reduced overstaffed public service departments. In 2005, the deterioration in housing, hospitals, and other capital plant continued, and the cost to Australia of keeping the government and economy afloat continued to climb. Few comprehensive statistics on the Nauru economy exist, with estimates of Naurus GDP varying widely.

Gdp purchasing power parity $60 million (2005 est.)

Gdp official exchange rate NA

Gdp real growth rateNA%

Gdp per capita ppp $5,000 (2005 est.)

Gdp composition by sectoragriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%

Labor force by occupationnote: employed in mining phosphates, public administration, education, and transportation (1992)

Unemployment rate90% (2004 est.)

Population below poverty lineNA%

Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate consumer prices -3.6% (1993)

Budgetrevenues: $13.5 million
expenditures: $13.5 million (2005)

Agriculture productscoconuts

Industriesphosphate mining, offshore banking, coconut products

Industrial production growth rateNA%

Electricity production30 million kWh (2004)

Electricity consumption27.9 million kWh (2004)

Electricity exports0 kWh (2004)

Electricity imports0 kWh (2004)

Oil production0 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil consumption1,000 bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil exportsNA bbl/day

Oil importsNA bbl/day

Oil proved reserves0 bbl

Natural gas production0 cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas consumption0 cu m (2004 est.)

Exports$64,000 f.o.b. (2005 est.)

Exports commoditiesphosphates

Exports partnersSouth Africa 63.7%, South Korea 7.6%, Canada 6.6% (2006)

Imports$20 million c.i.f. (2004 est.)

Imports commoditiesfood, fuel, manufactures, building materials, machinery

Imports partnersSouth Korea 43.8%, Australia 36.2%, US 5.9%, Germany 4.3% (2006)

Debt external$33.3 million (2002)

Economic aid recipient$20 million mostly from Australia (2005)

Currency code Australian dollar (AUD)

Exchange ratesAustralian dollars per US dollar - 1.3285 (2006), 1.3095 (2005), 1.3598 (2004), 1.5419 (2003), 1.8406 (2002)

Communications - Nauru:
Fiscal year1 July - 30 June

Telephones main lines in use1,900 (2002)

Telephones mobile cellular1,500 (2002)

Telephone systemgeneral assessment: adequate local and international radiotelephone communication provided via Australian facilities
domestic: NA
international: country code - 674; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean)

Radio broadcast stationsAM 1, FM 0, shortwave 0 (1998)

Television broadcast stations1 (1997)

Internet country code.nr

Internet hosts52 (2006)

Internet users300 (2002)

Transportation - Nauru:
Airports1 (2006)

Airports with paved runwaystotal: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2006)

Roadwaystotal: 30 km
paved: 24 km
unpaved: 6 km (1999 est.)

Ports and terminalsNauru

Military - Nauru:
Military branchesno regular military forces; Nauru Police Force (2007)

Manpower available for military servicemales age 18-49: 2,874 (2005 est.)

Military noteNauru maintains no defense forces; under an informal agreement, defense is the responsibility of Australia

Military expenditures percent of gdpNA

This page was last updated on 16 September, 2007
Source: CIA >>>