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United kingdom

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Introduction - United Kingdom:
CountryUnited Kingdom

BackgroundAs the dominant industrial and maritime power of the 19th century, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland played a leading role in developing parliamentary democracy and in advancing literature and science. At its zenith, the British Empire stretched over one-fourth of the earths surface. The first half of the 20th century saw the UKs strength seriously depleted in two World Wars and the Irish republic withdraw from the union. The second half witnessed the dismantling of the Empire and the UK rebuilding itself into a modern and prosperous European nation. As one of five permanent members of the UN Security Council, a founding member of NATO, and of the Commonwealth, the UK pursues a global approach to foreign policy; it currently is weighing the degree of its integration with continental Europe. A member of the EU, it chose to remain outside the Economic and Monetary Union for the time being. Constitutional reform is also a significant issue in the UK. The Scottish Parliament, the National Assembly for Wales, and the Northern Ireland Assembly were established in 1999, but the latter was suspended until May 2007 due to wrangling over the peace process.

Location - United Kingdom:
LocationWestern Europe, islands including the northern one-sixth of the island of Ireland between the North Atlantic Ocean and the North Sea, northwest of France

Geographic coordinates54 00 N, 2 00 W

Map referencesEurope

Areatotal: 244,820 sq km
land: 241,590 sq km
water: 3,230 sq km
note: includes Rockall and Shetland Islands

Area comparativeslightly smaller than Oregon

Land boundariestotal: 360 km
border countries: Ireland 360 km

Coastline12,429 km

Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: as defined in continental shelf orders or in accordance with agreed upon boundaries

Climatetemperate; moderated by prevailing southwest winds over the North Atlantic Current; more than one-half of the days are overcast

Terrainmostly rugged hills and low mountains; level to rolling plains in east and southeast

Elevation extremeslowest point: The Fens -4 m
highest point: Ben Nevis 1,343 m

Natural resourcescoal, petroleum, natural gas, iron ore, lead, zinc, gold, tin, limestone, salt, clay, chalk, gypsum, potash, silica sand, slate, arable land

Land usearable land: 23.23%
permanent crops: 0.2%
other: 76.57% (2005)

Irrigated land1,700 sq km (2003)

Natural hazardswinter windstorms; floods

Environment current issuescontinues to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (has met Kyoto Protocol target of a 12.5% reduction from 1990 levels and intends to meet the legally binding target and move toward a domestic goal of a 20% cut in emissions by 2010); by 2005 the government reduced the amount of industrial and commercial waste disposed of in landfill sites to 85% of 1998 levels and recycled or composted at least 25% of household waste, increasing to 33% by 2015

Environment international agreementsparty to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography notelies near vital North Atlantic sea lanes; only 35 km from France and linked by tunnel under the English Channel; because of heavily indented coastline, no location is more than 125 km from tidal waters

People - United Kingdom:
Population60,776,238 (July 2007 est.)

Age structure0-14 years: 17.2% (male 5,349,053/female 5,095,837)
15-64 years: 67% (male 20,605,031/female 20,104,313)
65 years and over: 15.8% (male 4,123,464/female 5,498,540) (2007 est.)

Median agetotal: 39.6 years
male: 38.5 years
female: 40.7 years (2007 est.)

Population growth rate0.275% (2007 est.)

Birth rate10.67 births/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Death rate10.09 deaths/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Net migration rate2.17 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2007 est.)

Sex ratioat birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.025 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.75 male(s)/female
total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2007 est.)

Infant mortality ratetotal: 5.01 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 5.58 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 4.4 deaths/1,000 live births (2007 est.)

Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 78.7 years
male: 76.23 years
female: 81.3 years (2007 est.)

Total fertility rate1.66 children born/woman (2007 est.)

Hiv aids adult prevalence rate0.2% (2001 est.)

Hiv aids people living with hiv aids51,000 (2001 est.)

Hiv aids deathsless than 500 (2003 est.)

Nationalitynoun: Briton(s), British (collective plural)
adjective: British

Ethnic groupswhite (of which English 83.6%, Scottish 8.6%, Welsh 4.9%, Northern Irish 2.9%) 92.1%, black 2%, Indian 1.8%, Pakistani 1.3%, mixed 1.2%, other 1.6% (2001 census)

ReligionsChristian (Anglican, Roman Catholic, Presbyterian, Methodist) 71.6%, Muslim 2.7%, Hindu 1%, other 1.6%, unspecified or none 23.1% (2001 census)

LanguagesEnglish, Welsh (about 26% of the population of Wales), Scottish form of Gaelic (about 60,000 in Scotland)

Literacydefinition: age 15 and over has completed five or more years of schooling
total population: 99%
male: 99%
female: 99% (2003 est.)

Government - United Kingdom:
Country nameconventional long form: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; note - Great Britain includes England, Scotland, and Wales
conventional short form: United Kingdom
abbreviation: UK

Government typeconstitutional monarchy

Capitalname: London
geographic coordinates: 51 30 N, 0 10 W
time difference: UTC 0 (5 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

Dependent areasAnguilla, Bermuda, British Indian Ocean Territory, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Montserrat, Pitcairn Islands, Saint Helena, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, Turks and Caicos Islands

Administrative divisionsEngland: 47 boroughs, 36 counties, 29 London boroughs, 12 cities and boroughs, 10 districts, 12 cities, 3 royal boroughs
boroughs: Barnsley, Blackburn with Darwen, Blackpool, Bolton, Bournemouth, Bracknell Forest, Brighton and Hove, Bury, Calderdale, Darlington, Doncaster, Dudley, Gateshead, Halton, Hartlepool, Kirklees, Knowsley, Luton, Medway, Middlesbrough, Milton Keynes, North Tyneside, Oldham, Poole, Reading, Redcar and Cleveland, Rochdale, Rotherham, Sandwell, Sefton, Slough, Solihull, Southend-on-Sea, South Tyneside, St. Helens, Stockport, Stockton-on-Tees, Swindon, Tameside, Thurrock, Torbay, Trafford, Walsall, Warrington, Wigan, Wirral, Wolverhampton
counties (or unitary authorities): Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire, Cheshire, Cornwall, Cumbria, Derbyshire, Devon, Dorset, Durham, East Sussex, Essex, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Herefordshire, Hertfordshire, Isle of Wight, Kent, Lancashire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Norfolk, North Yorkshire, Northamptonshire, Northumberland, Nottinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Shropshire, Somerset, Staffordshire, Suffolk, Surrey, Warwickshire, West Sussex, Wiltshire, Worcestershire
London boroughs: Barking and Dagenham, Barnet, Bexley, Brent, Bromley, Camden, Croydon, Ealing, Enfield, Greenwich, Hackney, Hammersmith and Fulham, Haringey, Harrow, Havering, Hillingdon, Hounslow, Islington, Lambeth, Lewisham, Merton, Newham, Redbridge, Richmond upon Thames, Southwark, Sutton, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest, Wandsworth
cities and boroughs: Birmingham, Bradford, Coventry, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle upon Tyne, Salford, Sheffield, Sunderland, Wakefield, Westminster
districts: Bath and North East Somerset, East Riding of Yorkshire, North East Lincolnshire, North Lincolnshire, North Somerset, Rutland, South Gloucestershire, Telford and Wrekin, West Berkshire, Wokingham
cities: City of Bristol, Derby, City of Kingston upon Hull, Leicester, City of London, Nottingham, Peterborough, Plymouth, Portsmouth, Southampton, Stoke-on-Trent, York
royal boroughs: Kensington and Chelsea, Kingston upon Thames, Windsor and Maidenhead
Northern Ireland: 24 districts, 2 cities, 6 counties (historic)
districts: Antrim, Ards, Armagh, Ballymena, Ballymoney, Banbridge, Carrickfergus, Castlereagh, Coleraine, Cookstown, Craigavon, Down, Dungannon, Fermanagh, Larne, Limavady, Lisburn, Magherafelt, Moyle, Newry and Mourne, Newtownabbey, North Down, Omagh, Strabane
cities: Belfast, Londonderry (Derry)
counties (historic): County Antrim, County Armagh, County Down, County Fermanagh, County Londonderry, and County Tyrone are still referred to in common parlance, but do not constitute a level of administration
Scotland: 32 council areas: Aberdeen City, Aberdeenshire, Angus, Argyll and Bute, Clackmannanshire, Dumfries and Galloway, Dundee City, East Ayrshire, East Dunbartonshire, East Lothian, East Renfrewshire, City of Edinburgh, Eilean Siar (Western Isles), Falkirk, Fife, Glasgow City, Highland, Inverclyde, Midlothian, Moray, North Ayrshire, North Lanarkshire, Orkney Islands, Perth and Kinross, Renfrewshire, Shetland Islands, South Ayrshire, South Lanarkshire, Stirling, The Scottish Borders, West Dunbartonshire, West Lothian
Wales: 11 county boroughs, 9 counties, 2 cities and counties
county boroughs: Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Caerphilly, Conwy, Gwynedd, Merthyr Tydfil, Neath Port Talbot, Newport, Rhondda Cynon Taff, Torfaen, Wrexham
counties: Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, Denbighshire, Flintshire, Isle of Anglesey, Monmouthshire, Pembrokeshire, Powys, The Vale of Glamorgan
cities and counties: Cardiff, Swansea

IndependenceEngland has existed as a unified entity since the 10th century; the union between England and Wales, begun in 1284 with the Statute of Rhuddlan, was not formalized until 1536 with an Act of Union; in another Act of Union in 1707, England and Scotland agreed to permanently join as Great Britain; the legislative union of Great Britain and Ireland was implemented in 1801, with the adoption of the name the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland; the Anglo-Irish treaty of 1921 formalized a partition of Ireland; six northern Irish counties remained part of the United Kingdom as Northern Ireland and the current name of the country, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, was adopted in 1927

National holidaythe UK does not celebrate one particular national holiday

Constitutionunwritten; partly statutes, partly common law and practice

Legal systembased on common law tradition with early Roman and modern continental influences; has nonbinding judicial review of Acts of Parliament under the Human Rights Act of 1998; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations

Suffrage18 years of age; universal

Executive branchchief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); Heir Apparent Prince CHARLES (son of the queen, born 14 November 1948)
head of government: Prime Minister Gordon BROWN (since 27 June 2007)
cabinet: Cabinet of Ministers appointed by the prime minister
elections: none; the monarchy is hereditary; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually the prime minister

Legislative branchbicameral Parliament consists of House of Lords (618 seats; consisting of approximately 500 life peers, 92 hereditary peers, and 26 clergy) and House of Commons (646 seats since 2005 elections; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms unless the House is dissolved earlier)
elections: House of Lords - no elections (note - in 1999, as provided by the House of Lords Act, elections were held in the House of Lords to determine the 92 hereditary peers who would remain there; elections are held only as vacancies in the hereditary peerage arise); House of Commons - last held 5 May 2005 (next to be held by May 2010)
election results: House of Commons - percent of vote by party - Labor 35.2%, Conservative 32.3%, Liberal Democrats 22%, other 10.5%; seats by party - Labor 356, Conservative 197, Liberal Democrat 62, other 31; seats by party in the House of Commons as of 26 June 2007 - Labor 353, Conservative 195, Liberal Democrat 63, Scottish National Party/Plaid Cymru 9, Democratic Unionist 9, Sinn Fein 5, other 12
note: in 1998 elections were held for a Northern Ireland Assembly (because of unresolved disputes among existing parties, the transfer of power from London to Northern Ireland came only at the end of 1999 and has been suspended four times, the latest occurring in October 2002 and lasting until 8 May 2007); in 1999, there were elections for a Scottish Parliament and a Welsh Assembly

Judicial branchHouse of Lords (highest court of appeal; several Lords of Appeal in Ordinary are appointed by the monarch for life); Supreme Courts of England, Wales, and Northern Ireland (comprising the Courts of Appeal, the High Courts of Justice, and the Crown Courts); Scotlands Court of Session and Court of the Justiciary

Political parties and leadersConservative and Unionist Party [David CAMERON]; Democratic Unionist Party (Northern Ireland) [Rev. Ian PAISLEY]; Labor Party [Gordon BROWN]; Liberal Democrats [Sir Menzies CAMPBELL]; Party of Wales (Plaid Cymru) [Ieuan Wyn JONES]; Scottish National Party or SNP [Alex SALMOND]; Sinn Fein (Northern Ireland) [Gerry ADAMS]; Social Democratic and Labor Party or SDLP (Northern Ireland) [Mark DURKAN]; Ulster Unionist Party (Northern Ireland) [Sir Reg EMPEY]

Political pressure groups and leadersCampaign for Nuclear Disarmament; Confederation of British Industry; National Farmers Union; Trades Union Congress

International organization participationAfDB, Arctic Council (observer), AsDB, Australia Group, BIS, C, CBSS (observer), CDB, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, EIB, ESA, EU, FAO, G-5, G-7, G-8, G-10, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, MIGA, MONUC, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club, PCA, PIF (partner), SECI (observer), UN, UN Security Council, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMIL, UNMIS, UNMOVIC, UNOMIG, UNRWA, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WEU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the uschief of mission: Ambassador David G. MANNING; note - will be replaced by Sir Nigel E. SHEINWALD in the autumn of 2007
chancery: 3100 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 588-6500
FAX: [1] (202) 588-7870
consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco
consulate(s): Dallas, Denver, Miami, Orlando

Diplomatic representation from the uschief of mission: Ambassador Robert Holmes TUTTLE
embassy: 24 Grosvenor Square, London, W1A 1AE
mailing address: PSC 801, Box 40, FPO AE 09498-4040
telephone: [44] (0) 20 7499-9000
FAX: [44] (0) 20 7629-9124
consulate(s) general: Belfast, Edinburgh

Flag descriptionblue field with the red cross of Saint George (patron saint of England) edged in white superimposed on the diagonal red cross of Saint Patrick (patron saint of Ireland), which is superimposed on the diagonal white cross of Saint Andrew (patron saint of Scotland); properly known as the Union Flag, but commonly called the Union Jack; the design and colors (especially the Blue Ensign) have been the basis for a number of other flags including other Commonwealth countries and their constituent states or provinces, and British overseas territories

Economy - United Kingdom:
Economy overviewThe UK, a leading trading power and financial center, is one of the quintet of trillion dollar economies of Western Europe. Over the past two decades, the government has greatly reduced public ownership and contained the growth of social welfare programs. Agriculture is intensive, highly mechanized, and efficient by European standards, producing about 60% of food needs with less than 2% of the labor force. The UK has large coal, natural gas, and oil reserves; primary energy production accounts for 10% of GDP, one of the highest shares of any industrial nation. Services, particularly banking, insurance, and business services, account by far for the largest proportion of GDP while industry continues to decline in importance. GDP growth slipped in 2001-03 as the global downturn, the high value of the pound, and the bursting of the new economy bubble hurt manufacturing and exports. Output recovered in 2004, to 3.2% growth, then slowed to 1.7% in 2005 and 2.7% in 2006. The economy is one of the strongest in Europe; inflation, interest rates, and unemployment remain low. The relatively good economic performance has complicated the BLAIR governments efforts to make a case for Britain to join the European Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). Critics point out that the economy is doing well outside of EMU, and public opinion polls show a majority of Britons are opposed to the euro. Meantime, the government has been speeding up the improvement of education, transport, and health services, at a cost in higher taxes and a widening public deficit.

Gdp purchasing power parity $1.93 trillion (2006 est.)

Gdp official exchange rate $2.346 trillion (2006 est.)

Gdp real growth rate2.8% (2006 est.)

Gdp per capita ppp $31,800 (2006 est.)

Gdp composition by sectoragriculture: 1%
industry: 25.6%
services: 73.4% (2006 est.)

Labor force31.1 million (2006 est.)

Labor force by occupationagriculture: 1.4%
industry: 18.2%
services: 80.4% (2006 est.)

Unemployment rate2.9% (2006 est.)

Population below poverty line17% (2002 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 2.1%
highest 10%: 28.5% (1999)

Distribution of family income gini index36.8 (1999)

Inflation rate consumer prices 3% (2006 est.)

Investment gross fixed 17.2% of GDP (2006 est.)

Budgetrevenues: $973 billion
expenditures: $1.04 trillion; including capital expenditures of $87 billion (2006 est.)

Public debt42.2% of GDP (2006 est.)

Agriculture productscereals, oilseed, potatoes, vegetables; cattle, sheep, poultry; fish

Industriesmachine tools, electric power equipment, automation equipment, railroad equipment, shipbuilding, aircraft, motor vehicles and parts, electronics and communications equipment, metals, chemicals, coal, petroleum, paper and paper products, food processing, textiles, clothing, other consumer goods

Industrial production growth rate0% (2006 est.)

Electricity production363.2 billion kWh (2004)

Electricity consumption345.2 billion kWh (2004)

Electricity exports2.3 billion kWh (2004)

Electricity imports9.8 billion kWh (2004)

Oil production2.075 million bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil consumption1.827 million bbl/day (2004 est.)

Oil exports1.956 million bbl/day (2004)

Oil imports1.654 million bbl/day (2004)

Oil proved reserves4.487 billion bbl (1 January 2005)

Natural gas production95.97 billion cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas consumption98.47 billion cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas exports9.8 billion cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas imports12.3 billion cu m (2004 est.)

Natural gas proved reserves589 billion cu m (1 January 2005 est.)

Current account balance-$57.68 billion (2006 est.)

Exports$468.8 billion f.o.b. (2006 est.)

Exports commoditiesmanufactured goods, fuels, chemicals; food, beverages, tobacco

Exports partnersUS 13.9%, Germany 10.9%, France 10.4%, Ireland 7.1%, Netherlands 6.3%, Belgium 5.2%, Spain 4.5% (2006)

Imports$603 billion f.o.b. (2006 est.)

Imports commoditiesmanufactured goods, machinery, fuels; foodstuffs

Imports partnersGermany 12.8%, US 8.9%, France 6.9%, Netherlands 6.6%, China 5.3%, Norway 4.9%, Belgium 4.5% (2006)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$38.83 billion (August 2006 est.)

Economic aid donorODA, $10.7 billion (2005)

Debt external$8.28 trillion (30 June 2006)

Currency code British pound (GBP)

Exchange ratesBritish pounds per US dollar - 0.5418 (2006), 0.5493 (2005), 0.5462 (2004), 0.6125 (2003), 0.6672 (2002)

Communications - United Kingdom:
Fiscal year6 April - 5 April

Telephones main lines in use33.602 million (2006)

Telephones mobile cellular69.657 million (2006)

Telephone systemgeneral assessment: technologically advanced domestic and international system
domestic: equal mix of buried cables, microwave radio relay, and fiber-optic systems
international: country code - 44; 40 coaxial submarine cables; satellite earth stations - 10 Intelsat (7 Atlantic Ocean and 3 Indian Ocean), 1 Inmarsat (Atlantic Ocean region), and 1 Eutelsat; at least 8 large international switching centers

Radio broadcast stationsAM 219, FM 431, shortwave 3 (1998)

Television broadcast stations228 (plus 3,523 repeaters) (1995)

Internet country code.uk

Internet hosts6.065 million (2006)

Internet users33.534 million (2006)

Transportation - United Kingdom:
Airports471 (2006)

Airports with paved runwaystotal: 334
over 3,047 m: 8
2,438 to 3,047 m: 33
1,524 to 2,437 m: 149
914 to 1,523 m: 86
under 914 m: 58 (2006)

Airports with unpaved runwaystotal: 137
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 23
under 914 m: 112 (2006)

Heliports11 (2006)

Pipelinescondensate 565 km; condensate/gas 6 km; gas 21,575 km; liquid petroleum gas 59 km; oil 5,094 km; oil/gas/water 161 km; refined products 4,444 km (2006)

Railwaystotal: 16,567 km
broad gauge: 303 km 1.600-m gauge (in Northern Ireland)
standard gauge: 16,264 km 1.435-m gauge (5,361 km electrified) (2006)

Roadwaystotal: 388,008 km
paved: 388,008 km (includes 3,520 km of expressways) (2005)

Waterways3,200 km (620 km used for commerce) (2003)

Merchant marinetotal: 449 ships (1000 GRT or over) 11,049,317 GRT/11,731,680 DWT
by type: bulk carrier 24, cargo 54, chemical tanker 50, container 146, liquefied gas 17, passenger 9, passenger/cargo 65, petroleum tanker 33, refrigerated cargo 17, roll on/roll off 26, vehicle carrier 8
foreign-owned: 215 (Australia 3, Denmark 46, Finland 1, France 4, Germany 76, Greece 7, Ireland 1, Italy 4, Netherlands 3, Norway 36, NZ 1, South Africa 5, Spain 1, Sweden 15, Switzerland 3, Taiwan 1, Turkey 2, US 6)
registered in other countries: 368 (Algeria 13, Antigua and Barbuda 7, Argentina 4, Australia 2, Bahamas 69, Barbados 5, Belgium 2, Bermuda 9, Brazil 1, Brunei 8, Cape Verde 1, Cayman Islands 10, Cyprus 6, Denmark 1, Finland 1, French Southern and Antarctic Lands 1, Georgia 4, Gibraltar 4, Greece 9, Hong Kong 43, India 1, Indonesia 2, Italy 3, South Korea 2, Liberia 41, Malta 8, Marshall Islands 12, Morocco 1, Netherlands 19, Netherlands Antilles 3, Norway 6, Panama 37, Papua New Guinea 6, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 13, Singapore 9, Slovakia 1, Spain 1, Thailand 2, Tonga 1) (2006)

Ports and terminalsHound Point, Immingham, Milford Haven, Liverpool, London, Southampton, Sullom Voe, Teesport

Military - United Kingdom:
Military branchesArmy, Royal Navy (includes Royal Marines), Royal Air Force

Military service age and obligation16 years of age for voluntary military service; women serve in military services, but are excluded from ground combat positions and some naval postings (2004)

Manpower available for military servicemales age 16-49: 14,607,724
females age 16-49: 14,028,738 (2005 est.)

Manpower fit for military servicemales age 16-49: 12,046,268
females age 16-49: 11,555,893 (2005 est.)

Military expenditures percent of gdp2.4% (2005 est.)

Disputes internationalin 2002, Gibraltar residents voted overwhelmingly by referendum to reject any shared sovereignty arrangement between the UK and Spain; the Government of Gibraltar insists on equal participation in talks between the two countries; Spain disapproves of UK plans to grant Gibraltar greater autonomy; Mauritius and Seychelles claim the Chagos Archipelago (British Indian Ocean Territory), and its former inhabitants since their eviction in 1965; most Chagossians reside in Mauritius, and in 2001 were granted UK citizenship, where some have since resettled; in May 2006, the High Court of London reversed the UK Governments 2004 orders of council that banned habitation on the islands; UK rejects sovereignty talks requested by Argentina, which still claims the Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas) and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands; territorial claim in Antarctica (British Antarctic Territory) overlaps Argentine claim and partially overlaps Chilean claim; Iceland, the UK, and Ireland dispute Denmarks claim that the Faroe Islands continental shelf extends beyond 200 nm

This page was last updated on 16 September, 2007
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