Paraguay 1993Paraguay

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Paraguay - Introduction 1993
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Background: In the disastrous War of the Triple Alliance (1865-70) Paraguay lost two-thirds of all adult males and much of its territory. It stagnated economically for the next half century. In the Chaco War of 1932-35 large economically important areas were won from Bolivia. The 35-year military dictatorship of Alfredo STROESSNER was overthrown in 1989 and relatively free and regular presidential elections have been held since then.

Paraguay - Geography 1993
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Geographic coordinates

Map referenceSouth America, Standard Time Zones of the World

Total: 406,750 km²
Land: 397,300 km²

Land boundaries:
total 3,920 km, Argentina 1,880 km, Bolivia 750 km,
Brazil 1,290 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none; landlocked

Climate: varies from temperate in east to semiarid in far west

Terrain: grassy plains and wooded hills east of Rio Paraguay; Gran Chaco region west of Rio Paraguay mostly low, marshy plain near the river, and dry forest and thorny scrub elsewhere


Natural resources: hydropower, timber, iron ore, manganese, limestone
Land use

Land use
Arable land: 20%
Permanent crops: 1%
Meadows and pastures: 39%
Forest and woodland: 35%
Other: 5%

Irrigated land: 670 km² (1989 est.)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards


Paraguay - People 1993
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Population: 5,070,856 (July 1993 est.)
Growth rate: 2.8% (1993 est.)

Noun: Paraguayan(s)
Adjective: Paraguayan

Ethnic groups: mestizo (Spanish and Indian) 95%, white and Indian 5%

Languages: Spanish (official), Guarani

Religions: Roman Catholic 90%, Mennonite and other Protestant denominations

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate: 2.8% (1993 est.)

Birth rate: 32.61 births/1000 population (1993 est.)

Death rate: 4.58 deaths/1000 population (1993 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1000 population (1993 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: local flooding in southeast (early September to June); poorly drained plains may become boggy (early October to June)
Current issues note: landlocked; buffer between Argentina and Brazil

Air pollutants

Sex ratio

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 72.98 years
Male: 71.42 years
Female: 74.62 years (1993 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.37 children born/woman (1993 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Literacy: age 15 and over can read and write (1990)
Total population: 90%
Male: 92%
Female: 88%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Paraguay - Government 1993
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Country name
Conventional long form: Republic of Paraguay
Conventional short form: Paraguay
Local long form: Republica del Paraguay
Local short form: Paraguay

Government type: republic

Capital: Asuncion

Administrative divisions:
19 departments (departamentos, singular - departamento); Alto Paraguay, Alto Parana, Amambay, Boqueron, Caaguazu,
Caazapa, Canindeyu, Central, Chaco, Concepcion, Cordillera, Guaira, Itapua,
Misiones, Neembucu, Nueva Asuncion, Paraguari, Presidente Hayes, San Pedro

Dependent areas

14 May 1811 (from Spain)
Constitution that was promulgated on 20 June 1992

National holiday: Independence Days, 14-15 May (1811)


Legal system: based on Argentine codes, Roman law, and French codes; judicial review of legislative acts in Supreme Court of Justice; does not accept compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory up to age 60

Executive branch: president, Council of Ministers (cabinet), Council of State

Legislative branch: bicameral Congress (Congreso) consists of an upper chamber or Chamber of Senators (Camara de Senadores) and a lower chamber or Chamber of Deputies (Camara de Diputados)

Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Justice (Corte Suprema de Justicia)

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation:
AG (observer), CCC, ECLAC, FAO, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO,

Diplomatic representation
In the us chief of mission: Ambassador Juan Esteban Aguirre MARTINEZ
In the us chancery: 2,400 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20,008
In the us telephone: (202) 483-6,960 through 6,962
In the us consulate: Houston
From the us chief of mission: Ambassador Jon David GLASSMAN
From the us embassy: 1776 Avenida Mariscal Lopez, Asuncion
From the us mailing address: C. P. 402, Asuncion, or APO AA 34,036-0001
From the us telephone: 595 (21) 213-715
From the us fax: 595 (21) 213-728

Flag descriptionflag of Paraguay: three equal, horizontal bands of red (top), white, and blue with an emblem centered in the white band; unusual flag in that the emblem is different on each side; the obverse (hoist side at the left) bears the national coat of arms (a yellow five-pointed star within a green wreath capped by the words REPUBLICA DEL PARAGUAY, all within two circles; the reverse (hoist side at the right) bears the seal of the treasury (a yellow lion below a red Cap of Liberty and the words Paz y Justicia (Peace and Justice) capped by the words REPUBLICA DEL PARAGUAY, all within two circles)

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Paraguay - Economy 1993
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Economy overview: Agriculture, including forestry, accounts for about 25% of GDP, employs about 45% of the labor force, and provides the bulk of exports. Paraguay lacks substantial mineral or petroleum resources but does have a large hydropower potential. Since 1981 economic performance has declined compared with the boom period of 1976-81, when real GDP grew at an average annual rate of nearly 11%. During the period 1982-86 real GDP fell in three of five years, inflation jumped to an annual rate of 32%, and foreign debt rose. Factors responsible for the erratic behavior of the economy were the completion of the Itaipu hydroelectric dam, bad weather for crops, and weak international commodity prices for agricultural exports. In 1987 the economy experienced a minor recovery because of improved weather conditions and stronger international prices for key agricultural exports. The recovery continued through 1990, on the strength of bumper crops in 1988-89. In a major step to increase its economic activity in the region, Paraguay in March 1991 joined the Southern Cone Common Market (MERCOSUR), which includes Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay. In 1992, the government, through an unorthodox approach, reduced external debt with both commercial and official creditors by purchasing a sizable amount of the delinquent commercial debt in the secondary market at a substantial discount. The government had paid 100% of remaining official debt arrears to the US, Germany, France, and Spain. All commercial debt arrears have been rescheduled. For the long run, the government must press forward with general, market-oriented economic reforms.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate: 1.7% (1992 est.)

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin

Agriculture products: accounts for 25% of GDP and 44% of labor force; cash crops - cotton, sugarcane; other crops - corn, wheat, tobacco, soybeans, cassava, fruits, vegetables; animal products - beef, pork, eggs, milk; surplus producer of timber; self-sufficient in most foods

Industries: meat packing, oilseed crushing, milling, brewing, textiles, other light consumer goods, cement, construction

Industrial production growth rate:
growth rate 5.9% (1989 est.); accounts for 17% of

Labor force: 1.641 million (1992 est.)
By occupation agriculture industry and commerce services government: (1986)
Labor force

Unemployment rate: 10% (1992 est.)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index


Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: calendar year

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

Exports: $719 million (f.o.b., 1992)
Commodoties: cotton, soybean, timber, vegetable oils, coffee, tung oil, meat products
Partners: EC 37%, Brazil 25%, Argentina 10%, Chile 6%, US 6%

Imports: $1.33 billion (c.i.f., 1992)
Commodoties: capital goods 35%, consumer goods 20%, fuels and lubricants 19%, raw materials 16%, foodstuffs, beverages, and tobacco 10%
Partners: Brazil 30%, EC 20%, US 18%, Argentina 8%, Japan 7%

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: guaranies (G) per US$ - 1,637.6 (January 1993), 1,500.3 (1992), 447.5 (March 1992), 1,325.2 (1991), 1,229.8 (1990), 1,056.2 (1989), 550.00 (fixed rate 1986-February 1989)

Paraguay - Energy 1993
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 5,257,000 kW capacity; 16,200 million kWh produced, 3,280 kWh per capita (1992)

Electricity consumption

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Paraguay - Communication 1993
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Paraguay - Military 1993
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Military expenditures
Percent of gdp: exchange rate conversion - $84 million, 1.4% of GDP (1988 est.)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Paraguay - Transportation 1993
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 862
Usable: 719
With permanentsurface runways: 7
With runways over 3659 m: 0
With runways 2440-3659 m: 4
With runways 1220-2439 m: 64

Airports with paved runways

Airports with unpaved runways





Waterways: 3,100 km

Merchant marine

Ports and terminals

Paraguay - Transnational issues 1993
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Disputes international: short section of the boundary with Brazil (just west of Guaira Falls on the Rio Parana) has not been determined

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs: illicit producer of cannabis for the international drug trade; important transshipment point for Bolivian cocaine headed for the US and Europe

Volotea Air

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