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Countries > Northern Mariana Islands (U.S.) Northern Mariana Islands (U.S.) Flag

Languages   2 languages are spoken in Northern Mariana Islands (U.S.). We have 4191 products available for those languages.

Capital: Saipan
Population: 53,000
Northern Mariana Islands (U.S.) Map

(commonwealth in political union with the US)


Location: Oceania, islands in the North Pacific Ocean, about three-quarters of the way from Hawaii to the Philippines

Geographic coordinates: 15 12 N, 145 45 E

Map references: Oceania

total: 477 sq km
land: 477 sq km
water: 0 sq km
note: includes 14 islands including Saipan, Rota, and Tinian

Area - comparative: 2.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 1,482 km

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

Climate: tropical marine; moderated by northeast trade winds, little seasonal temperature variation; dry season December to June, rainy season July to October

Terrain: southern islands are limestone with level terraces and fringing coral reefs; northern islands are volcanic

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
highest point : unnamed location on Agrihan 965 m

Natural resources: arable land, fish

Land use:
arable land : 21%
permanent crops: NA%
permanent pastures: 19%
forests and woodland: NA%
other: 78% (1998 est.)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: active volcanoes on Pagan and Agrihan; typhoons (especially August to November)

Environment - current issues: contamination of groundwater on Saipan by raw sewage contributes to disease; clean-up of landfill; protection of endangered species conflicts with development

Environment - international agreements:
party to: NA
signed, but not ratified: NA

Geography - note: strategic location in the North Pacific Ocean


Population: 77,311 (July 2002 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years : 23.4% (male 9,208; female 8,902)
15-64 years: 74.8% (male 27,041; female 30,781)
65 years and over: 1.8% (male 690; female 689) (2002 est.)

Net migration rate: 17.02 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth:1.06 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.88 male(s)/female
65 years and over : NA male(s)/female
total population: 0.92 male(s)/female (2002 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population :75.95 years
male: 72.85 years
female:79.23 years (2002 est.)

noun: NA
adjective : NA

Ethnic groups: Chamorro, Carolinians and other Micronesians, Caucasian, Japanese, Chinese, Korean

Religions: Christian (Roman Catholic majority, although traditional beliefs and taboos may still be found)

Languages: English, Chamorro, Carolinian
note: 86% of population speaks a language other than English at home

definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 97%
male: 97%
female : 96% (1980 est.)


Country name:
conventional long form: Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands
conventional short form : Northern Mariana Islands

Data code: CQ

Dependency status: commonwealth in political union with the US; federal funds to the Commonwealth administered by the US Department of the Interior, Office of Territorial and International Affairs

Government type: commonwealth; self-governing with locally elected governor, lieutenant governor, and legislature

National capital: Saipan

Administrative divisions: none

Independence: none (commonwealth in political union with the US)

National holiday: Commonwealth Day, 8 January (1978)

Constitution: Covenant Agreement effective 3 November 1986 and the Constitution of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands

Legal system: based on US system except for customs, wages, immigration laws, and taxation

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal; indigenous inhabitants are US citizens but do not vote in US presidential elections

Executive branch:
chief of state: President George W. BUSH of the US (since 20 January 2001); Vice President Richard B. CHENEY (since 20 January 2001)
head of government: GGovernor Juan N. BABOUTA (since NA January 2002) and Lieutenant Governor Diego T. BENEVENTE (since NA January 2002)
cabinet: NA
elections :US president and vice president elected on the same ticket for four-year terms; governor and lieutenant governor elected on the same ticket by popular vote for four-year terms; election last held NA November 2001 (next to be held NA November 2005)
election results: Juan N. BABOUTA elected governor in a four-way race; percent of vote - Juan N. BABOUTA (Republican Party) 49%

Legislative branch: bicameral Legislature consists of the Senate (9 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve four-year staggered terms) and the House of Representatives (18 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve two-year terms)
elections : Senate - last held 5 November 2001 (next to be held NA November 2003); House of Representatives - last held 5 November 2001 (next to be held NA November 2003)
election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - Republican Party 4, Democratic Party 3, Reform Party 1, independent 1; House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - Republican Party 16, Democratic Party 1, Covenant Party 1
note : the Northern Mariana Islands does not have a nonvoting delegate in the US Congress; instead, it has an elected official or "resident representative" located in Washington, DC; seats by party - Republican Party 1 (Pedro A. TENORIO)

Judicial branch: Commonwealth Supreme Court; Superior Court; Federal District Court

Political parties and leaders: Democratic Party [Dr. Carlos S. CAMACHO]; Republican Party [Benigno R. FITIAL]

International organization participation: ESCAP (associate), SPC

Flag description: blue with a white five-pointed star superimposed on the gray silhouette of a latte stone (a traditional foundation stone used in building) in the center, surrounded by a wreath


Economy - overview:The economy benefits substantially from financial assistance from the US. The rate of funding has declined as locally generated government revenues have grown. The key tourist industry employs about 50% of the work force and accounts for roughly one-fourth of GDP. Japanese tourists predominate. Annual tourist entries have exceeded one-half million in recent years, but financial difficulties in Japan have caused a temporary slowdown. The agricultural sector is made up of cattle ranches and small farms producing coconuts, breadfruit, tomatoes, and melons. Garment production is by far the most important industry with employment of 17,500 mostly Chinese workers and sizable shipments to the US under duty and quota exemptions.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $900 million (2000 est.)
note: GDP numbers reflect US spending

GDP - real growth rate: NA%

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $12,500 (2000 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%

Inflation rate - consumer price index: 1.2% (1997 est.)

Labor force:
total: 6,006 total indigenous labor force; 2,699 unemployed; 28,717 foreign workers (1995)
by occupation: NA

Unemployment rate: NA%

revenues: $193 million
expenditures :$223 million, including capital expenditures of NA (FY 2001/02 est.)

Industries: tourism, construction, garments, handicrafts

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - capacity: NA kW

Electricity - production: NA kWh

Electricity - consumption per capita: NA kWh

Agriculture - products: coconuts, fruits, vegetables; cattle

Exports: NA
commodities: garments
partners : NA

Imports: NA
commodities: food, construction equipment and materials, petroleum products
partners : US, Japan

Debt - external: $NA

Economic aid: none

Currency: 1 United States dollar (US$) = 100 cents

Exchange rates: US currency is used

Fiscal year: 1 October - 30 September


Telephones: 21,000 (1996)

Telephone system:
domestic : NA
international: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 2, FM 3, shortwave 1 (1998)

Radios: 15,350 (1987 est.)

Television broadcast stations: (on Saipan and one station planned for Rota; in addition, two cable services on Saipan provide varied programming from satellite networks) (1997)

Televisions: 10,650 (1993 est.)


Railways: 0 km

total : 362 km (1991 est.)
paved: NA km
unpaved: NA km

Waterways: none

Ports and harbors: Saipan, Tinian

Merchant marine: none

Airports: 6 (2001)

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 3
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 (2001)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m : 1
under 914 m: 2 (2001)

Heliports: 1 (2001)


Military - note: defense is the responsibility of the US

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international: none