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Countries > Honduras Honduras Flag

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Capital: Tegucigalpa
Population: 5,800,000
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Honduras Map


Location: Middle America, bordering the Caribbean Sea, between Guatemala and Nicaragua and bordering the North Pacific Ocean, between El Salvador and Nicaragua

Geographic coordinates: 15 00 N, 86 30 W

Map references: Central America and the Caribbean

total: 112,090 sq km
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:
contiguous zone: 24 nm
continental shelf: natural extension of territory or to 200 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
territorial sea: 12 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

Land use:
arable land : 15%
permanent crops: 3%
permanent pastures: 14%
forests and woodland: 54%
other: 14%(1998 est.)

Irrigated land: 760 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: frequent, but generally mild, earthquakes; damaging hurricanes and floods along 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 freshwater) with heavy metals as well as several rivers and streams

Environment - international agreements:
party to : Biodiversity, Climate Change, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Desertification


Population: 6,560,608 (July 2002 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years :41.8% (male 1,400,778; female 1,340,834)
15-64 years: 54.6% (male 1,774,619; female 1,806,568)
65 years and over: 3.6% (male 112,100; female 125,709) (2002 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.34% (2002 est.)

Birth rate: 31.21 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Death rate: 5.74 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Net migration rate: -2.07 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth : 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female
65 years and over:0.89 male(s)/female
total population : 1 male(s)/female (2002 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 30.48 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population : 68.77 years
male: 67.11 years
female: 70.51 years (2002 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.03 children born/woman (2002 est.)

noun: Honduran(s)
adjective: Honduran

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

Religions: Roman Catholic 97%, Protestant minority

Languages: Spanish, Amerindian dialects

definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 74%
male : 74%
female: 72.7% (1995 est.)


Country name:
conventional long form : Republic of Honduras
conventional short form: Honduras
local long form: Republica de Honduras
local short form: Honduras

Data code: HO

Government type: republic

National capital: Tegucigalpa

Administrative divisions: 18 departments (departamentos, singular - departamento) plus probable Central District (Tegucigalpa); 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

Legal system: rooted in Roman and Spanish civil law; some influence of English common law; accepts ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branch:
chief of state:President Ricardo (Joest) MADURO (since 27 January 2002); First Vice President Vicente WILLIAMS Agasse (since 27 January 2002); Second Vice President Armida Villela Maria DE LOPEZ Contreras (since 27 January 2002); Third Vice President Alberto DIAZ Lobo (since 27 January 2002); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
head of government: President Ricardo (Joest) MADURO (since 27 January 2002); First Vice President Vicente WILLIAMS Agasse (since 27 January 2002); Second Vice President Armida Villela Maria DE LOPEZ Contreras (since 27 January 2002); Third Vice President Alberto DIAZ Lobo (since 27 January 2002); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by president
elections:president elected by popular vote for a four-year term; election last held 25 November 2001 (next to be held NA November 2005)
election results: Ricardo (Joest) MADURO (PN) elected president - 52.2%, Raphael PINEDA Ponce (PL) 44.3%, others 3.5%

Legislative branch: unicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional (128 seats; members are elected proportionally to the number of votes their party's presidential candidate receives to serve four-year terms)
elections : last held 25 November 2001 (next to be held NA November 2005)
election results:percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PN 61, PL 55, PUD 5, PDC 4, PINU-SD 3

Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Justice (Corte Suprema de Justica), judges are elected for four-year terms by the National Assembly

Political parties and leaders:Christian Democratic Party or PDC [Dr. Hernan CORRALES Padilla]; Democratic Unification Party or PUD [leader NA]; Liberal Party or PL [Roberto MICHELETTI Bain]; National Innovation and Unity Party-Social Democratic Party or PINU-SD [Olban F. VALLADARES]; National Party of Honduras or PN [Raphael CALLEJAS]

Political pressure groups and leaders: 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 Federation of Honduran Workers or FUTH

International organization participation: BCIE, CACM, ECLAC, FAO, G-77, IADB, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO (subscriber), ITU, LAES, LAIA (observer), MINURSO, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW (signatory), PCA, RG, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Mario Miguel CANAHUATI
chancery: 3007 Tilden Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 966-7702, 2604, 5008, 4596
FAX: [1] (202) 966-9751
consulate(s) general : Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco, and San Juan (Puerto Rico)
consulate(s): Boston, Detroit, and Jacksonville

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Frank ALMAGUER
embassy : Avenida La Paz, Apartado Postal No. 3453, Tegucigalpa
mailing address: American Embassy, APO AA 34022, Tegucigalpa
telephone: [504] 36-9320, 38-5114
FAX: [504] 36-9037

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; 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 word REPUBLICA DE NICARAGUA on top and AMERICA CENTRAL on the bottom, centered in the white band


Economy - overview: Honduras, one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere with an extraordinarily unequal distribution of income, is banking on expanded trade privileges under the Enhanced Caribbean Basin Initiative and on debt relief under the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) initiative. While the country has met most of its macroeconomic targets, it failed to meet the IMF's goals to liberalize its energy and telecommunications sectors. Growth remains dependent on the status of the US economy, its major trading partner, on commodity prices, particularly coffee, and on containment of the recent rise in crime.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $11.5 billion (1996 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 2.1% (2001 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $2,600 (2001 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture : 18%
industry: 32%
services:50% (2000 est.)

Inflation rate - consumer price index: 9.7% (2001 est.)

Labor force:
total: 1.3 million
by occupation: agriculture 34%, industry 21%, services 45% (2001 est.)

Unemployment rate: 28% (2001 est.)

revenues: $607 million
expenditures: $411.9 million, including capital expenditures of $106 million (1999 est.)

Industries: sugar, coffee, textiles, clothing, wood products

Industrial production growth rate: 4% (1999 est.)

Electricity - capacity: 605,900 kW (1995)

Electricity - production: 3.573 billion kWh (2000)

Electricity - consumption per capita: 3.593 billion kWh (2000)

Agriculture - products: bananas, coffee, citrus; beef; timber; shrimp;

total value: $2 billion (f.o.b., 2001 est.)
commodities: bananas, coffee, shrimp, lobster, minerals, meat, lumber
partners :US 39.9%, El Salvador 9.2%, Germany 7.9%, Belgium 5.8%, Guatemala 5.4% (2000)

total value: $2.7 billion (f.o.b., 2001 est.)
commodities: machinery and transport equipment, industrial raw materials, chemical products, manufactured goods, fuel and oil, foodstuffs
partners : US 46.1%, Guatemala 8.2%, El Salvador 6.6%, Mexico 4.7%, Japan 4.6% (2000)

Debt - external: $5.6 billion (2001)

Economic aid:
recipient: $557.8 million (1999)

Currency: 1 lempira (HNL) = 100 centavos

Exchange rates: lempiras per US dollar - 16.0256 (January 2002), 15.9197 (2001), 15.1407 (2000), 14.5039 (1999), 13.8076 (1998), 13.0942 (1997)

Fiscal year: calendar year


Telephones: 234,000 (1997)

Telephone system: inadequate system
domestic: NA
international: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); connected to Central American Microwave System

Radio broadcast stations: AM 241, FM 53, shortwave 12 (1998)

Radios: 2.45 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 11 (plus 17 repeaters) (1997)

Televisions: 570,000 (1997)


total: 595 km
narrow gauge:318 km 1.067-m gauge; 277 km 0.914-m gauge (2000)

total: 15,100 km
paved:3,126 km
unpaved: 12,274 km (1999 est.)

Waterways: 465 km navigable by small craft

Ports and harbors: La Ceiba, Puerto Castilla, Puerto Cortes, San Lorenzo, Tela, Puerto Lempira

Merchant marine:
total: 284 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 749,243 GRT/846,942 DWT
ships by type: bulk 20, cargo 166, chemical tanker 5, container 6, livestock carrier 1, passenger 3, passenger/cargo 3, petroleum tanker 54, refrigerated cargo 12, roll on/roll off 8, short-sea passenger 4, specialized tanker 1, vehicle carrier 1
note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Argentina 1, Bahrain 1, Belize 1, British Virgin Islands 1, Bulgaria 1, China 8, Costa Rica 1, Cyprus 1, Egypt 6, El Salvador 1, Germany 1, Greece 18, Hong Kong 3, Indonesia 2, Italy 1, Japan 7, Lebanon 4, Liberia 4, Maldives 2, Marshall Islands 1, Mexico 1, Nigeria 1, Norway 1, Panama 14, Philippines 1, Romania 2, Russia 1, Saint Kitts and Nevis 3, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 1, Singapore 24, South Korea 12, Spain 1, Syria 1, Taiwan 4, Tanzania 1, Trinidad and Tobago 1, Turkey 2, Turks and Caicos Islands 1, United Arab Emirates 6, United Kingdom 1, United States 5, Vanuatu 1, Vietnam 1, Virgin Islands (UK) 1 (2002 est.)

Airports: 117 (2001)

Airports - with paved runways:
2,438 to 3,047 m: 3
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m : 3
under 914 m: 4 (2001)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 105
1,524 to 2,437 m:2
914 to 1,523 m: 20
under 914 m:83 (2001)


Military branches: Army, Navy (includes Marines), Air Force, Public Security Forces (FUSEP)

Military manpower - military age: 18 years of age

Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 1,563,174 (2002 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:
males: 930,718 (2002 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
males : 72,335 (2002 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $35 million (FY99)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 0.6% (FY99)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international: Honduras claims Sapodilla Cays off the coast of Belize; El Salvador disputes tiny Conejo Island off Honduras in the Golfo de Fonseca; many of the "bolsones" (disputed areas) along the El Salvador-Honduras boundary remain undemarcated despite ICJ adjudication in 1992; with respect to the maritime boundary in the Golfo de Fonseca, the ICJ referred to the line determined by the 1900 Honduras-Nicaragua Mixed Boundary Commission and advised a tripartite resolution among El Salvador, Honduras, and Nicaragua; Nicaragua filed a claim against Honduras in 1999 and against Colombia in 2001 at the ICJ over disputed maritime boundary involving 50,000 sq km in the Caribbean Sea, including the Archipelago de San Andres y Providencia and Quita Sueno Bank

Illicit drugs: transshipment point for drugs and narcotics; illicit producer of cannabis, cultivated on small plots and used principally for local consumption

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