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band; also similar to the flag of Egypt, which has a heraldic eagle
centered in the white band

@Syria:Economy

Economy - overview: Syria's predominantly statist economy is on a
shaky footing because of Damascus's failure to implement extensive
economic reform. The dominant agricultural sector remains
underdeveloped, with roughly 80% of agricultural land still dependent
on rain-fed sources. Although Syria has sufficient water supplies in
the aggregate at normal levels of precipitation, the great distance
between major water supplies and population centers poses serious
distribution problems. The water problem is exacerbated by rapid
population growth, industrial expansion, and increased water
pollution. Private investment is critical to the modernization of the
agricultural, energy, and export sectors. Oil production is leveling
off, and the efforts of the nonoil sector to penetrate international
markets have fallen short. Syria's inadequate infrastructure, outmoded
technological base, and weak educational system make it vulnerable to
future shocks and hamper competition with neighbors such as Jordan and
Israel.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $42.2 billion (1999 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 0% (1999 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $2,500 (1999 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 29%
industry: 22%
services: 49% (1997)

Population below poverty line: 15%-25%

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.3% (1999 est.)

Labor force: 4.7 million (1998 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 40%, industry 20%, services
40% (1996 est.)

Unemployment rate: 12%-15% (1998 est.)

Budget:
revenues: $3.5 billion
expenditures: $4.2 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA
(1997 est.)

Industries: petroleum, textiles, food processing, beverages, tobacco,
phosphate rock mining

Industrial production growth rate: 0.2% (1996 est.)

Electricity - production: 17.5 billion kWh (1998)

Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 42.86%
hydro: 57.14%
nuclear: 0%
other: 0% (1998)

Electricity - consumption: 16.275 billion kWh (1998)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (1998)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (1998)

Agriculture - products: wheat, barley, cotton, lentils, chickpeas,
olives, sugar beets; beef, mutton, eggs, poultry, milk

Exports: $3.3 billion (f.o.b., 1999 est.)

Exports - commodities: petroleum 65%, textiles 10%, manufactured goods
10%, fruits and vegetables 7%, raw cotton 5%, live sheep 2%,
phosphates 1% (1998 est.)

Exports - partners: Germany 14%, Turkey 13%, Italy 12%, France 9%,
Lebanon 9%, Spain (1998 est.)

Imports: $3.2 billion (f.o.b., 1999 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment 23%, foodstuffs/animals
20%, metal and metal products 15%, textiles 10%, chemicals 10% (1998
est.)

Imports - partners: Ukraine 16%, Italy 6%, Germany 6%, Turkey 5%,
France 4%, South Korea, Japan, US (1998 est.)

Debt - external: $22 billion (1999 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $199 million (1997 est.)

Currency: 1 Syrian pound = 100 piastres

Exchange rates: Syrian pounds per US$1 - 46 (1998), 41.9 (January
1997); official fixed rate - 11.225 Syrian pounds per US$1

Fiscal year: calendar year

@Syria:Communications

Telephones - main lines in use: 930,000 (1995)

Telephones - mobile cellular: NA

Telephone system: fair system currently undergoing significant
improvement and digital upgrades, including fiber-optic technology
domestic: coaxial cable and microwave radio relay network
international: satellite earth stations - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean)
and 1 Intersputnik (Atlantic Ocean region); 1 submarine cable; coaxial
cable and microwave radio relay to Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey;
participant in Medarabtel

Radio broadcast stations: AM 14, FM 2, shortwave 1 (1998)

Radios: 4.15 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 54 (of which 36 are low-power and
repeater stations) (1997)

Televisions: 1.05 million (1997)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): NA

@Syria:Transportation

Railways:
total: 2,750 km
standard gauge: 2,423 km 1.435-m gauge
narrow gauge: 327 km 1.050-m gauge (2000)

Highways:
total: 36,377 km
paved: 26,299 km (including 877 km of expressways)
unpaved: 10,078 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: 870 km; minimal economic importance

Pipelines: crude oil 1,304 km; petroleum products 515 km

Ports and harbors: Baniyas, Jablah, Latakia, Tartus

Merchant marine:
total: 137 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 429,005 GRT/626,069 DWT
ships by type: bulk 11, cargo 120, livestock carrier 5,
roll-on/roll-off 1 (1999 est.)

Airports: 104 (1999 est.)

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 24
over 3,047 m: 5
2,438 to 3,047 m: 16
914 to 1,523 m: 1
under 914 m: 2 (1999 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 80
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 14
under 914 m: 63 (1999 est.)

Heliports: 2 (1999 est.)

@Syria:Military

Military branches: Syrian Arab Army, Syrian Arab Navy, Syrian Arab Air
Force, Syrian Arab Air Defense Forces, Police and Security Force

Military manpower - military age: 19 years of age

Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 4,220,578 (2000 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:
males age 15-49: 2,358,973 (2000 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
males: 196,616 (2000 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $800 million-$1 billion (FY97
est.); note - based on official budget data that may understate actual
spending

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 5.9% (FY98)

@Syria:Transnational Issues

Disputes - international: Golan Heights is Israeli occupied; dispute
with upstream riparian Turkey over Turkish water development plans for
the Tigris and Euphrates rivers; Syrian troops in northern, central,
and eastern Lebanon since October 1976

Illicit drugs: a transit point for opiates and hashish bound for
regional and Western markets

______________________________________________________________________



TAIWAN

@Taiwan:Introduction

Background: In 1895, military defeat forced China to cede Taiwan to
Japan, however it reverted to Chinese control after World War II.
Following the communist victory on the mainland in 1949, 2 million
Nationalists fled to Taiwan and established a government that over
five decades has gradually democratized and incorporated the native
population within its structure. Throughout this period, the island
has prospered to become one of East Asia's economic "Tigers." The
dominant political issue continues to be the relationship between
Taiwan and China and the question of eventual reunification.

@Taiwan:Geography

Location: Eastern Asia, islands bordering the East China Sea,
Philippine Sea, South China Sea, and Taiwan Strait, north of the
Philippines, off the southeastern coast of China

Geographic coordinates: 23 30 N, 121 00 E

Map references: Southeast Asia

Area:
total: 35,980 sq km
land: 32,260 sq km
water: 3,720 sq km
note: includes the Pescadores, Matsu, and Quemoy

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Maryland and Delaware
combined

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 1,566.3 km

Maritime claims:
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: tropical; marine; rainy season during southwest monsoon (June
to August); cloudiness is persistent and extensive all year

Terrain: eastern two-thirds mostly rugged mountains; flat to gently
rolling plains in west

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: South China Sea 0 m
highest point: Yu Shan 3,997 m

Natural resources: small deposits of coal, natural gas, limestone,
marble, and asbestos

Land use:
arable land: 24%
permanent crops: 1%
permanent pastures: 5%
forests and woodland: 55%
other: 15%

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: earthquakes and typhoons

Environment - current issues: air pollution; water pollution from
industrial emissions, raw sewage; contamination of drinking water
supplies; trade in endangered species; low-level radioactive waste
disposal

Environment - international agreements:
party to: none of the selected agreements
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

@Taiwan:People

Population: 22,191,087 (July 2000 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 22% (male 2,485,421; female 2,292,901)
15-64 years: 70% (male 7,869,939; female 7,629,195)
65 years and over: 8% (male 1,013,074; female 900,557) (2000 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.81% (2000 est.)

Birth rate: 14.42 births/1,000 population (2000 est.)

Death rate: 5.91 deaths/1,000 population (2000 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.38 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2000 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.08 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.08 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 1.12 male(s)/female
total population: 1.05 male(s)/female (2000 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 7.06 deaths/1,000 live births (2000 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 76.35 years
male: 73.62 years
female: 79.32 years (2000 est.)

Total fertility rate: 1.76 children born/woman (2000 est.)

Nationality:
noun: Chinese (singular and plural)
adjective: Chinese

Ethnic groups: Taiwanese (including Hakka) 84%, mainland Chinese 14%,
aborigine 2%

Religions: mixture of Buddhist, Confucian, and Taoist 93%, Christian
4.5%, other 2.5%

Languages: Mandarin Chinese (official), Taiwanese (Min), Hakka
dialects

Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 86% (1980 est.); note - literacy for the total
population has reportedly increased to 94% (1998 est.)
male: 93% (1980 est.)
female: 79% (1980 est.)

@Taiwan:Government

Country name:
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Taiwan
local long form: none
local short form: T'ai-wan

Data code: TW

Government type: multiparty democratic regime headed by popularly
elected president

Capital: Taipei

Administrative divisions: since in the past the authorities claimed to
be the government of all China, the central administrative divisions
include the provinces of Fu-chien (some 20 offshore islands of Fujian
Province including Quemoy and Matsu) and Taiwan (the island of Taiwan
and the Pescadores islands); note - the more commonly referenced
administrative divisions are those of Taiwan Province - 16 counties
(hsien, singular and plural), 5 municipalities* (shih, singular and
plural), and 2 special municipalities** (chuan-shih, singular and
plural); Chang-hua, Chia-i, Chia-i*, Chi-lung*, Hsin-chu, Hsin-chu*,
Hua-lien, I-lan, Kao-hsiung, Kao-hsiung**, Miao-li, Nan-t'ou,
P'eng-hu, P'ing-tung, T'ai-chung, T'ai-chung*, T'ai-nan, T'ai-nan*,
T'ai-pei, T'ai-pei**, T'ai-tung, T'ao-yuan, and Yun-lin; the
provincial capital is at Chung-hsing-hsin-ts'un
note: Taiwan uses the Wade-Giles system for romanization

National holiday: National Day, 10 October (1911) (Anniversary of the
Chinese Revolution)

Constitution: 1 January 1947, amended in 1992, 1994, and 1997

Legal system: based on civil law system; accepts compulsory ICJ
jurisdiction, with reservations

Suffrage: 20 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
note: President-elect CHEN Shui-bian is scheduled to take office on 20
May 2000
chief of state: President LEE Teng-hui (succeeded to the presidency
following the death of President CHIANG Ching-kuo 13 January 1988,
elected by the National Assembly 21 March 1990, elected by popular
vote in the first-ever direct elections for president 23 March 1996);
Vice President LIEN Chan (since 20 May 1996)
head of government: Premier (President of the Executive Yuan) Vincent
SIEW (since 1 September 1997) and Vice Premier (Vice President of the
Executive Yuan) LIU Chao-shiuan (since 10 December 1997)
cabinet: Executive Yuan appointed by the president
elections: president and vice president elected on the same ticket by
popular vote for four-year terms; election last held 18 March 2000
(next to be held NA March 2004); premier appointed by the president;
vice premiers appointed by the president on the recommendation of the
premier
election results: CHEN Shui-bian elected president; percent of vote -
CHEN Shui-bian (DPP) 39.3%, James SOONG (independent) 36.84%, LIEN
Chan (KMT) 23.1%, HSU Hsin-liang (independent) .63%, LEE Ao (CNP) .13%

Legislative branch: unicameral Legislative Yuan (225 seats - 168
elected by popular vote, 41 elected on the basis of the proportion of
nationwide votes received by participating political parties, eight
elected from overseas Chinese constituencies on the basis of the
proportion of nationwide votes received by participating political
parties, eight elected by popular vote among the aboriginal
populations; members serve three-year terms) and unicameral National
Assembly (334 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve
four-year terms)
elections: Legislative Yuan - last held 5 December 1998 (next to be
held NA December 2001); National Assembly - last held 23 March 1996
(next to be held NA 2000)
election results: Legislative Yuan - percent of vote by party - KMT
46%, DPP 29%, CNP 7%, independents 10%, other parties 8%; seats by
party - KMT 123, DPP 70, CNP 11, independents 15, other parties 6;
National Assembly - percent of vote by party - KMT 55%, DPP 30%, CNP
14%, other 1%; seats by party - KMT 183, DPP 99, CNP 46, other 6

Judicial branch: Judicial Yuan, justices appointed by the president
with the consent of the National Assembly

Political parties and leaders: Chinese New Party or CNP [CHOU
Yang-sun]; Democratic Progressive Party or DPP [LIN Yi-hsiung,
chairman]; Kuomintang or KMT (Nationalist Party) [LIEN Chan, acting
chairman]; Taiwan Independence Party or TAIP ; other
minor parties

Political pressure groups and leaders: Taiwan independence movement,
various business and environmental groups
note: debate on Taiwan independence has become acceptable within the
mainstream of domestic politics on Taiwan; political liberalization
and the increased representation of opposition parties in Taiwan's
legislature have opened public debate on the island's national
identity; advocates of Taiwan independence oppose the ruling party's
traditional stand that the island will eventually reunify with
mainland China; goals of the Taiwan independence movement include
establishing a sovereign nation on Taiwan and entering the UN; other
organizations supporting Taiwan independence include the World United
Formosans for Independence and the Organization for Taiwan Nation
Building

International organization participation: APEC, AsDB, BCIE, ICC, IOC,
WCL, WTrO (applicant)

Diplomatic representation in the US: none; unofficial commercial and
cultural relations with the people of the US are maintained through a
private instrumentality, the Taipei Economic and Cultural
Representative Office (TECRO) in the US with headquarters in Taipei
and field offices in Washington and 12 other US cities

Diplomatic representation from the US: none; unofficial commercial and
cultural relations with the people on Taiwan are maintained through a
private corporation, the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), which has
its headquarters in Rosslyn, Virginia (telephone: (703) 525-8474
and FAX: (703) 841-1385) and offices in Taipei at #7 Lane 134,
Hsin Yi Road, Section 3, telephone (2) 2709-2000, FAX (2)
2702-7675, and in Kao-hsiung at #2 Chung Cheng 3d Road, telephone
(7) 224-0154 through 0157, FAX (7) 223-8237, and the
American Trade Center at Room 3207 International Trade Building,
Taipei World Trade Center, 333 Keelung Road Section 1, Taipei 10548,
telephone (2) 2720-1550, FAX (2) 2757-7162

Flag description: red with a dark blue rectangle in the upper
hoist-side corner bearing a white sun with 12 triangular rays

@Taiwan:Economy

Economy - overview: Taiwan has a dynamic capitalist economy with
gradually decreasing guidance of investment and foreign trade by
government authorities. In keeping with this trend, some large
government-owned banks and industrial firms are being privatized. Real
growth in GDP has averaged about 8% during the past three decades.
Exports have grown even faster and have provided the primary impetus
for industrialization. Inflation and unemployment are low; the trade
surplus is substantial; and foreign reserves are the world's third
largest. Agriculture contributes 3% to GDP, down from 35% in 1952.
Traditional labor-intensive industries are steadily being moved
off-shore and replaced with more capital- and technology-intensive
industries. Taiwan has become a major investor in China, Thailand,
Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Vietnam. The tightening of
labor markets has led to an influx of foreign workers, both legal and
illegal. Because of its conservative financial approach and its
entrepreneurial strengths, Taiwan suffered little compared with many
of its neighbors from the Asian financial crisis in 1998-99. Growth in
2000 should pick up a bit from 1999, backed by expansion in domestic
consumption, exports, and private investment.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $357 billion (1999 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 5.5% (1999 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $16,100 (1999 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 3%
industry: 33%
services: 64% (1999 est.)

Population below poverty line: 1% (1999 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 0.4% (1999 est.)

Labor force: 9.7 million (1999 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: services 55%, industry 37%, agriculture
8% (1999 est.)

Unemployment rate: 2.9% (1999 est.)

Budget:
revenues: $36.82 billion
expenditures: $40.53 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA
(1999 est.)

Industries: electronics, petroleum refining, chemicals, textiles, iron
and steel, machinery, cement, food processing

Industrial production growth rate: 7.5% (1999 est.)

Electricity - production: 133.586 billion kWh (1998)

Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 65.91%
hydro: 7.84%
nuclear: 26.25%
other: 0% (1998)

Electricity - consumption: 124.235 billion kWh (1998)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (1998)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (1998)

Agriculture - products: rice, corn, vegetables, fruit, tea; pigs,
poultry, beef, milk; fish

Exports: $121.6 billion (f.o.b., 1999)

Exports - commodities: electronics, electric and machinery equipment
52%, metals, textiles, plastics, chemicals

Exports - partners: US 26%, Hong Kong 21%, Europe 18%, Japan 10%,
Singapore 3% (1999)

Imports: $101.7 billion (c.i.f., 1999)

Imports - commodities: electronics, electric and machinery equipment
45%, minerals, precision instruments

Imports - partners: Japan 27%, US 18%, Europe 16%, South Korea 6%,
Malaysia 4% (1999)

Debt - external: $35 billion (September 1999)

Economic aid - recipient: $NA

Currency: 1 New Taiwan dollar (NT$) = 100 cents

Exchange rates: New Taiwan dollars per US$1 - 31.395 (yearend 1999),
32.216 (1998), 32.052 (1997), 27.5 (1996), 27.5 (1995)

Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June (up to FY98/99); 1 July 1999 - 31
December 2000 for FY00; calendar year (after FY00)

@Taiwan:Communications

Telephones - main lines in use: 12 million (October 1999)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 10.2 million (October 1999)

Telephone system:
domestic: provides modern telecommunications service for every
business and private need; completely digitalized
international: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Pacific Ocean
and 1 Indian Ocean); submarine cables to Japan (Okinawa), Philippines,
Guam, Singapore, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Australia, Middle East, and
Western Europe (1999)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 218, FM 333, shortwave 50 (1999)

Radios: 16 million (1994)

Television broadcast stations: 29 (plus two repeaters) (1997)

Televisions: 8.8 million (1998)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 15 (1999)

@Taiwan:Transportation

Railways:
total: 2,481 km (519 km electrified)
narrow gauge: 2,481 km 1.067-m (1999)

Highways:
total: 34,901 km
paved: 31,271 km (including 538 km of expressways)
unpaved: 3,630 km (1998 est.)

Pipelines: petroleum products 3,400 km; natural gas 1,800 km (1999)

Ports and harbors: Chi-lung (Keelung), Hua-lien, Kao-hsiung, Su-ao,
T'ai-chung

Merchant marine:
total: 175 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 4,944,166 GRT/7,710,891
DWT
ships by type: bulk 45, cargo 33, combination bulk 1, container 69,
petroleum tanker 17, refrigerated cargo 8, roll-on/roll-off 2 (1999
est.)

Airports: 38 (1999 est.)

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 35
over 3,047 m: 8
2,438 to 3,047 m: 9
1,524 to 2,437 m: 8
914 to 1,523 m: 7
under 914 m: 3 (1999 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 3
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
under 914 m: 2 (1999 est.)

Heliports: 2 (1999 est.)

@Taiwan:Military

Military branches: Army, Navy (includes Marines), Air Force, Coastal
Patrol and Defense Command, Armed Forces Reserve Command, Combined
Service Forces

Military manpower - military age: 19 years of age

Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 6,554,373 (2000 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:
males age 15-49: 5,017,643 (2000 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
males: 201,413 (2000 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $8.042 billion (FY98/99)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 2.8% (FY98/99)

@Taiwan:Transnational Issues

Disputes - international: involved in complex dispute over the Spratly
Islands with China, Malaysia, Philippines, Vietnam, and possibly
Brunei; Paracel Islands occupied by China, but claimed by Vietnam and
Taiwan; claims Japanese-administered Senkaku-shoto (Senkaku
Islands/Diaoyu Tai), as does China

Illicit drugs: considered an important heroin transit point; major
problem with domestic consumption of methamphetamines and heroin

______________________________________________________________________



TAJIKISTAN

@Tajikistan:Introduction

Background: Tajikistan has experienced three changes in government and
a civil war since it gained independence in 1991 when the USSR
collapsed. A peace agreement among rival factions was signed in 1997,
but implementation has progressed slowly. Nevertheless, a number of
opposition political parties have been legalized and are participating
in elections, suggesting that the country may be stabilizing
politically. Russian-led peacekeeping troops are based throughout the
country, and Russian-commanded border guards are stationed along the
border with Afghanistan.

@Tajikistan:Geography

Location: Central Asia, west of China

Geographic coordinates: 39 00 N, 71 00 E

Map references: Commonwealth of Independent States

Area:
total: 143,100 sq km
land: 142,700 sq km
water: 400 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Wisconsin

Land boundaries:
total: 3,651 km
border countries: Afghanistan 1,206 km, China 414 km, Kyrgyzstan 870
km, Uzbekistan 1,161 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: midlatitude continental, hot summers, mild winters; semiarid
to polar in Pamir Mountains

Terrain: Pamir and Alay mountains dominate landscape; western Fergana
Valley in north, Kofarnihon and Vakhsh Valleys in southwest

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Syrdariya 300 m
highest point: Pik Imeni Ismail Samani 7,495 m

Natural resources: hydropower, some petroleum, uranium, mercury, brown
coal, lead, zinc, antimony, tungsten

Land use:
arable land: 6%
permanent crops: 0%
permanent pastures: 25%
forests and woodland: 4%
other: 65% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 6,390 sq km (1993 est.)

Natural hazards: NA

Environment - current issues: inadequate sanitation facilities;
increasing levels of soil salinity; industrial pollution; excessive
pesticides; part of the basin of the shrinking Aral Sea suffers from
severe overutilization of available water for irrigation and
associated pollution

Environment - international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Environmental
Modification, Ozone Layer Protection
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: landlocked

@Tajikistan:People

Population: 6,440,732 (July 2000 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 42% (male 1,362,521; female 1,336,205)
15-64 years: 54% (male 1,714,545; female 1,734,430)
65 years and over: 4% (male 126,170; female 166,861) (2000 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.12% (2000 est.)



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