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Snaefellsnes-og Hnappadalssysla, Strandasysla, Sudhur-Mulasysla,
Sudhur-Thingeyjarsysla, Vesttmannaeyjar*, Vestur-Bardhastrandarsysla,
Vestur-Hunavatnssysla, Vestur-Isafjardharsysla,

Independence: 17 June 1944 (from Denmark)

National holiday: Anniversary of the Establishment of the Republic, 17
June (1944)

Constitution: 16 June 1944, effective 17 June 1944

Legal system: civil law system based on Danish law; does not accept
compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
chief of state: President Olafur Ragnar GRIMSSON (since 1 August 1996)
head of government: Prime Minister David ODDSSON (since 30 April 1991)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president
elections: president elected by popular vote for a four-year term;
election last held 29 June 1996 (next to be held NA June 2000); prime
minister appointed by the president
election results: Olafur Ragnar GRIMSSON elected president; percent of
vote - 41.4%

Legislative branch: unicameral Parliament or Althing (63 seats;
members are elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
elections: last held on 8 May 1999 (next to be held by April 2003)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Haestirettur, justices are appointed
for life by the president

Political parties and leaders: Independence Party (conservative) or IP
; National Awakening (People's Revival Party) or PR
; People's Alliance (left socialist) or PA
; People's Movement (centrist) ;
Progressive Party (liberal) or PP ; Social
Democratic Party or SDP ; Women's Party or WL
International organization participation: Australia Group, BIS, CBSS,
ICRM, IDA, IEA (observer), IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat,
Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, NATO, NC, NEA, NIB, OECD, OPCW,
(associate), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Jon-Baldvin HANNIBALSSON
chancery: Suite 1200, 1156 15th Street NW, Washington, DC 20005
telephone: (202) 265-6653
FAX: (202) 265-6656
consulate(s) general: New York

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Barbara GRIFFITHS
embassy: Laufasvegur 21, Reykjavik
mailing address: US Embassy, PSC 1003, Box 40, FPO AE 09728-0340
telephone: 5629100
FAX: 5629118

Flag description: blue with a red cross outlined in white that extends
to the edges of the flag; the vertical part of the cross is shifted to
the hoist side in the style of the Dannebrog (Danish flag)


Economy - overview: Iceland's Scandinavian-type economy is basically
capitalistic, yet with an extensive welfare system, low unemployment,
and remarkably even distribution of income. The economy depends
heavily on the fishing industry, which provides 70% of export earnings
and employs 12% of the work force. In the absence of other natural
resources (except for abundant hydrothermal and geothermal power),
Iceland's economy is vulnerable to changing world fish prices. The
economy remains sensitive to declining fish stocks as well as to drops
in world prices for its main exports: fish and fish products,
aluminum, and ferrosilicon. The center-right government plans to
continue its policies of reducing the budget and current account
deficits, limiting foreign borrowing, containing inflation, revising
agricultural and fishing policies, diversifying the economy, and
privatizing state-owned industries. The government remains opposed to
EU membership, primarily because of Icelanders' concern about losing
control over their fishing resources. Iceland's economy has been
diversifying into manufacturing and service industries in the last
decade, and new developments in software production, biotechnology,
and financial services are taking place. The tourism sector is also
expanding, with the recent trends in ecotourism and whale-watching.
Growth is likely to slow in 2000, to a still respectable 3.5%.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $6.42 billion (1999 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 4.5% (1999 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $23,500 (1999 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 15% (includes fishing 13%)
industry: 21%
services: 64% (1998 est.)

Population below poverty line: NA%

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

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1.9% (1999 est.)

Labor force: 131,000 (1999)

Labor force - by occupation: manufacturing 12.9%, fishing and fish
processing 11.8%, construction 10.7%, other services 59.5%,
agriculture 5.1% (1999)

Unemployment rate: 2.4% (1999 est.)

revenues: $NA
expenditures: $3 billion, including capital expenditures of $146
million (1999 est.)

Industries: fish processing; aluminum smelting, ferrosilicon
production, geothermal power; tourism

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - production: 6.187 billion kWh (1998)

Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 0.06%
hydro: 89.88%
nuclear: 0%
other: 10.06% (1998)

Electricity - consumption: 5.754 billion kWh (1998)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (1998)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (1998)

Agriculture - products: potatoes, turnips; cattle, sheep; fish

Exports: $1.9 billion (f.o.b., 1998)

Exports - commodities: fish and fish products 70%, animal products,
aluminum, diatomite and ferrosilicon

Exports - partners: EU 65% (UK 19%, Germany 15%, France 7%, Denmark
6%), US 13%, Japan 5% (1998)

Imports: $2.4 billion (f.o.b., 1998)

Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment, petroleum products;
foodstuffs, textiles

Imports - partners: EU 56% (Germany 12%, UK 10%, Norway 9%, Denmark
8%, Sweden 6%), US 11% (1998)

Debt - external: $2.6 billion (1999)

Economic aid - recipient: $NA

Currency: 1 Icelandic krona (IKr) = 100 aurar

Exchange rates: Icelandic kronur (IKr) per US$1 - 72.334 (January
2000), 72.352 (1999), 70.958 (1998), 70.904 (1997), 66.500 (1996),
64.692 (1995)

Fiscal year: calendar year


Telephones - main lines in use: 162,310 (1997)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 65,746 (1997)

Telephone system: adequate domestic service
domestic: the trunk network consists of coaxial and fiber-optic cables
and microwave radio relay links
international: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean),
1 Inmarsat (Atlantic and Indian Ocean regions); note - Iceland shares
the Inmarsat earth station with the other Nordic countries (Denmark,
Finland, Norway, and Sweden)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 3, FM about 70 (including repeaters),
shortwave 1 (1998)

Radios: 260,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 14 (plus 156 low-power repeaters)

Televisions: 98,000 (1997)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 14 (1999)


Railways: 0 km

total: 12,689 km
paved: 3,439 km
unpaved: 9,250 km (1998 est.)

Ports and harbors: Akureyri, Hornafjordur, Isafjordhur, Keflavik,
Raufarhofn, Reykjavik, Seydhisfjordhur, Straumsvik, Vestmannaeyjar

Merchant marine:
total: 3 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 13,085 GRT/16,938 DWT
ships by type: chemical tanker 1, container 1, petroleum tanker 1
(1999 est.)

Airports: 86 (1999 est.)

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 12
over 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 7 (1999 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 74
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 19
under 914 m: 52 (1999 est.)


Military branches: no regular armed forces; Police, Coast Guard; note
- Iceland's defense is provided by the US-manned Icelandic Defense
Force (IDF) headquartered at Keflavik

Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 71,486 (2000 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:
males age 15-49: 62,990 (2000 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $0

Military - note: Iceland's defense is provided by the US-manned
Icelandic Defense Force (IDF) headquartered at Keflavik

@Iceland:Transnational Issues

Disputes - international: Rockall continental shelf dispute involving
Denmark, Ireland, and the UK (Ireland and the UK have signed a
boundary agreement in the Rockall area)




Background: Nonviolent resistance to British colonialism under
Mohandas GANDHI and Jawaharlal NEHRU led to independence in 1947. The
subcontinent was divided into the secular state of India and the
smaller Muslim state of Pakistan. A third war between the two
countries in 1971 resulted in East Pakistan becoming the separate
nation of Bangladesh. Fundamental concerns in India include the
ongoing dispute with Pakistan over Kashmir, massive overpopulation,
environmental degradation, extensive poverty, and ethnic strife, all
this despite impressive gains in economic investment and output.


Location: Southern Asia, bordering the Arabian Sea and the Bay of
Bengal, between Burma and Pakistan

Geographic coordinates: 20 00 N, 77 00 E

Map references: Asia

total: 3,287,590 sq km
land: 2,973,190 sq km
water: 314,400 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly more than one-third the size of the US

Land boundaries:
total: 14,103 km
border countries: Bangladesh 4,053 km, Bhutan 605 km, Burma 1,463 km,
China 3,380 km, Nepal 1,690 km, Pakistan 2,912 km

Coastline: 7,000 km

Maritime claims:
contiguous zone: 24 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: varies from tropical monsoon in south to temperate in north

Terrain: upland plain (Deccan Plateau) in south, flat to rolling plain
along the Ganges, deserts in west, Himalayas in north

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
highest point: Kanchenjunga 8,598 m

Natural resources: coal (fourth-largest reserves in the world), iron
ore, manganese, mica, bauxite, titanium ore, chromite, natural gas,
diamonds, petroleum, limestone, arable land

Land use:
arable land: 56%
permanent crops: 1%
permanent pastures: 4%
forests and woodland: 23%
other: 16% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 480,000 sq km (1993 est.)

Natural hazards: droughts, flash floods, severe thunderstorms common;

Environment - current issues: deforestation; soil erosion;
overgrazing; desertification; air pollution from industrial effluents
and vehicle emissions; water pollution from raw sewage and runoff of
agricultural pesticides; tap water is not potable throughout the
country; huge and growing population is overstraining natural

Environment - international agreements:
party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic Treaty,
Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species,
Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Nuclear
Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83,
Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note: dominates South Asian subcontinent; near important
Indian Ocean trade routes


Population: 1,014,003,817 (July 2000 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 34% (male 175,228,164; female 165,190,951)
15-64 years: 62% (male 324,699,562; female 301,821,383)
65 years and over: 4% (male 23,925,371; female 23,138,386) (2000 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.58% (2000 est.)

Birth rate: 24.79 births/1,000 population (2000 est.)

Death rate: 8.88 deaths/1,000 population (2000 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.08 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2000 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.08 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 1.03 male(s)/female
total population: 1.07 male(s)/female (2000 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 64.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2000 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 62.5 years
male: 61.89 years
female: 63.13 years (2000 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3.11 children born/woman (2000 est.)

noun: Indian(s)
adjective: Indian

Ethnic groups: Indo-Aryan 72%, Dravidian 25%, Mongoloid and other 3%

Religions: Hindu 80%, Muslim 14%, Christian 2.4%, Sikh 2%, Buddhist
0.7%, Jains 0.5%, other 0.4%

Languages: English enjoys associate status but is the most important
language for national, political, and commercial communication, Hindi
the national language and primary tongue of 30% of the people, Bengali
(official), Telugu (official), Marathi (official), Tamil (official),
Urdu (official), Gujarati (official), Malayalam (official), Kannada
(official), Oriya (official), Punjabi (official), Assamese (official),
Kashmiri (official), Sindhi (official), Sanskrit (official),
Hindustani (a popular variant of Hindi/Urdu spoken widely throughout
northern India)
note: 24 languages each spoken by a million or more persons; numerous
other languages and dialects, for the most part mutually

definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 52%
male: 65.5%
female: 37.7% (1995 est.)


Country name:
conventional long form: Republic of India
conventional short form: India

Data code: IN

Government type: federal republic

Capital: New Delhi

Administrative divisions: 25 states and 7 union territories*; Andaman
and Nicobar Islands*, Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Bihar,
Chandigarh*, Dadra and Nagar Haveli*, Daman and Diu*, Delhi*, Goa,
Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Karnataka,
Kerala, Lakshadweep*, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya,
Mizoram, Nagaland, Orissa, Pondicherry*, Punjab, Rajasthan, Sikkim,
Tamil Nadu, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal

Independence: 15 August 1947 (from UK)

National holiday: Anniversary of the Proclamation of the Republic, 26
January (1950)

Constitution: 26 January 1950

Legal system: based on English common law; limited judicial review of
legislative acts; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
chief of state: President Kicheril Raman NARAYANAN (since 25 July
1997); Vice President Krishnan KANT (since 21 August 1997)
head of government: Prime Minister Atal Behari VAJPAYEE (since 19
March 1998)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president on the
recommendation of the prime minister
elections: president elected by an electoral college consisting of
elected members of both houses of Parliament and the legislatures of
the states for a five-year term; election last held 14 July 1997 (next
to be held NA July 2002); vice president elected by both houses of
Parliament for a five-year term; election last held 16 August 1997
(next to be held NA August 2002); prime minister elected by
parliamentary members of the majority party following legislative
elections; election last held NA October 1999 (next to be held NA
October 2004)
election results: Kicheril Raman NARAYANAN elected president; percent
of electoral college vote - NA; Krishnan KANT elected vice president;
percent of Parliament vote - NA; Atal Behari VAJPAYEE elected prime
minister; percent of vote - NA

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament or Sansad consists of the
Council of States or Rajya Sabha (a body consisting of not more than
250 members, up to 12 of which are appointed by the president, the
remainder are chosen by the elected members of the state and
territorial assemblies; members serve six-year terms) and the People's
Assembly or Lok Sabha (545 seats; 543 elected by popular vote, 2
appointed by the president; members serve five-year terms)
elections: People's Assembly - last held 5 September through 3 October
1999 (next to be held NA 2004)
election results: People's Assembly - percent of vote by party - BJP
alliance 40.8%, Congress alliance 33.8%, other 25.4%; seats by party -
BJP alliance 304, Congress alliance 134, other 105

Judicial branch: Supreme Court, judges are appointed by the president
and remain in office until they reach the age of 65

Political parties and leaders: Akali Dal (representing Sikh religious
community in Punjab) ; All India Anna Dravida
Munnetra Kazhagam or AIADMK ; All India Forward Bloc
or AIFB [Prem Dutta PALIWAL (chairman), Chitta BASU (general
secretary)]; Asom Gana Parishad ; Bahujan
Samaj Party or BSP ; Bharatiya Janata Party or BJP
; Bihar
Peoples Party ; Biju Janata Dal or BJD [Navin
PATNAIK]; Communist Party of India or CPI ; Communist
Party of India/Marxist or CPI/M ; Communist
Party of India/Marxist-Leninist or CPI/ML ; Congress (I)
Party ; Dravida Munnetra Kazagham or DMK (a
regional party in Tamil Nadu) ; Indian National League
; Janata Dal (Ajit) ; Janata Dal United
Party or JDU ; Kerala Congress
(Mani faction) ; Muslim League ; National
Conference or NC (a regional party in Jammu and Kashmir) [Farooq
ABDULLAH]; Rashtriya Janata Dal or RJD ;
Revolutionary Socialist Party or RSP ; Samajwadi
Party or SP ; Samata Party or SAP
(formerly Janata Dal members) ; Shiv Sena or SHS
; Tamil Maanila Congress ; Telugu Desam
(a regional party in Andhra Pradesh) ; Trinamool

Political pressure groups and leaders: numerous religious or
militant/chauvinistic organizations, including Vishwa Hindu Parishad,
and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh; various separatist groups seeking
greater communal and/or regional autonomy

International organization participation: AfDB, AsDB, BIS, C, CCC, CP,
ESCAP, FAO, G- 6, G-15, G-19, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC,
IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO, ITU,

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Naresh CHANDRA
chancery: 2107 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008; note -
Embassy located at 2536 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: (202) 939-7000
FAX: (202) 483-3972
consulate(s) general: Chicago, Houston, New York, and San Francisco

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Richard F. CELESTE
embassy: Shanti Path, Chanakyapuri 110021, New Delhi
mailing address: use embassy street address
telephone: (11) 688-9033, 611-3033
FAX: (11) 419-0017
consulate(s) general: Calcutta, Chennai (Madras), Mumbai (Bombay)

Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of orange (top), white,
and green with a blue chakra (24-spoked wheel) centered in the white
band; similar to the flag of Niger, which has a small orange disk
centered in the white band


Economy - overview: India's economy encompasses traditional village
farming, modern agriculture, handicrafts, a wide range of modern
industries, and a multitude of support services. More than a third of
the population is too poor to be able to afford an adequate diet, and
market surveys indicate that fewer than 5% of all households had an
annual income equivalent to $2,300 or more in 1995-96. India's
international payments position remained strong in 1999 with adequate
foreign exchange reserves, reasonably stable exchange rates, and
booming exports of software services. Lower production of some
nonfoodgrain crops offset recovery in industrial production. Strong
demand for India's high technology exports will bolster growth in

GDP: purchasing power parity - $1.805 trillion (1999 est.)

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

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,800 (1999 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 25%
industry: 30%
services: 45% (1997)

Population below poverty line: 35% (1994 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 4.1%
highest 10%: 25% (1994)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 6.7% (1999 est.)

Labor force: NA

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 67%, services 18%, industry
15% (1995 est.)

Unemployment rate: NA%

revenues: $35.8 billion
expenditures: $66.3 billion, including capital expenditures of $15.9
billion (FY98/99 est.)

Industries: textiles, chemicals, food processing, steel,
transportation equipment, cement, mining, petroleum, machinery

Industrial production growth rate: 6% (1999 est.)

Electricity - production: 448.6 billion kWh (FY98/99 est.)

Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 80.34%
hydro: 17.08%
nuclear: 2.38%
other: 0.2% (1998)

Electricity - consumption: 416.346 billion kWh (1998)

Electricity - exports: 130 million kWh (1998)

Electricity - imports: 1.575 billion kWh (1998)

Agriculture - products: rice, wheat, oilseed, cotton, jute, tea,
sugarcane, potatoes; cattle, water buffalo, sheep, goats, poultry;

Exports: $36.3 billion (f.o.b., 1999 est.)

Exports - commodities: textile goods, gems and jewelry, engineering
goods, chemicals, leather manufactures

Exports - partners: US 21%, UK 6%, Germany 6%, Hong Kong 5%, Japan 5%,
UAE 4% (1998)

Imports: $50.2 billion (f.o.b., 1999 est.)

Imports - commodities: crude oil and petroleum products, machinery,
gems, fertilizer, chemicals

Imports - partners: US 10%, Belgium 7%, UK 6%, Germany 6%, Saudi
Arabia 6%, Japan 6% (1998)

Debt - external: $98 billion (March 1999)

Economic aid - recipient: $2.9 billion (FY98/99)

Currency: 1 Indian rupee (Re) = 100 paise

Exchange rates: Indian rupees (Rs) per US$1 - 43.552 (January 2000),
43.055 (1999), 41.259 (1998), 36.313 (1997), 35.433 (1996), 32.427

Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March


Telephones - main lines in use: 18.95 million (1999)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 1.9 million (April 1998)

Telephone system: mediocre service; local and long distance service
provided throughout all regions of the country, with services
primarily concentrated in the urban areas; major objective is to
continue to expand and modernize long-distance network in order to
keep pace with rapidly growing number of local subscriber lines;
steady improvement is taking place with the recent admission of
private and private-public investors, but demand for communication
services is also growing rapidly
domestic: local service is provided by microwave radio relay and
coaxial cable, with open wire and obsolete electromechanical and
manual switchboard systems still in use in rural areas; starting in
the 1980s, a substantial amount of digital switch gear has been
introduced for local and long-distance service; long-distance traffic
is carried mostly by coaxial cable and low-capacity microwave radio
relay; since 1985 significant trunk capacity has been added in the
form of fiber-optic cable and a domestic satellite system with 254
earth stations; mobile cellular service is provided in four
metropolitan cities
international: satellite earth stations - 8 Intelsat (Indian Ocean)
and 1 Inmarsat (Indian Ocean region); nine gateway exchanges operating
from Mumbai (Bombay), New Delhi, Calcutta, Chennai (Madras),
Jalandhar, Kanpur, Gaidhinagar, Hyderabad, and Ernakulam; 4 submarine
cables - LOCOM linking Chennai (Madras) to Penang; Indo-UAE-Gulf cable
linking Mumbai (Bombay) to Al Fujayrah, UAE; India-SEA-ME-WE-3,
SEA-ME-WE-2 with landing sites at Cochin and Mumbai (Bombay);
Fiber-Optic Link Around the Globe (FLAG) with landing site at Mumbai

Radio broadcast stations: AM 153, FM 91, shortwave 68 (1998)

Radios: 116 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 562 (of which 82 stations have 1 kW or
greater power and 480 stations have less than 1 kW of power) (1997)

Televisions: 63 million (1997)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 3 (1999)


total: 62,915 km (12,307 km electrified; 12,617 km double track)
broad gauge: 40,620 km 1.676-m gauge
narrow gauge: 18,501 km 1.000-m gauge; 3,794 km 0.762-m and 0.610-m
gauge (1998 est.)

total: 3,319,644 km
paved: 1,517,077 km
unpaved: 1,802,567 km (1996 est.)

Waterways: 16,180 km; 3,631 km navigable by large vessels

Pipelines: crude oil 3,005 km; petroleum products 2,687 km; natural
gas 1,700 km (1995)

Ports and harbors: Calcutta, Chennai (Madras), Cochin, Jawaharal
Nehru, Kandla, Mumbai (Bombay), Vishakhapatnam

Merchant marine:
total: 321 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 6,647,268 GRT/11,074,025

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