Statistical information Bolivia 1996Bolivia

Map of Bolivia | Geography | People | Government | Economy | Energy | Communication
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Bolivia in the World
Bolivia in the World


Bolivia - Introduction 1996
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Background: Bolivia broke away from Spanish rule in 1825. Its subsequent history has been marked by a seemingly endless series of coups, counter-coups, and abrupt changes in leaders and policies. Comparatively democratic civilian rule was established in the 1980s, but the leaders have faced difficult problems of deep-seated poverty, social unrest, strikes, and drug dealing. Current issues include encouraging and negotiating the terms for foreign investment; strengthening the educational system; continuing the privatization program; pursuing judicial reform and an anti-corruption campaign.

Bolivia - Geography 1996
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Location: Central South America, southwest of Brazil

Geographic coordinates

Map reference

Total: 1,098,580 km²
Land: 1,084,390 km²
Comparative: slightly less than three times the size of Montana

Land boundaries: Total 6,743 km, Argentina 832 km, Brazil 3,400 km, Chile 861 km, Paraguay 750 km, Peru 900 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: None; landlocked

Climate: Varies with altitude; humid and tropical to cold and semiarid

Terrain: Rugged Andes Mountains with a highland plateau (Altiplano), hills, lowland plains of the Amazon Basin

Extremes lowest point: Rio Paraguay 90 m
Extremes highest point: Cerro Illimani 6,882 m

Natural resources:
Natural gas

Land use

Land use
Arable land: 3%
Permanent crops: 0%
Permanent pastures: 25%
Forests and woodland: 52%
Other: 20%

Irrigated land: 1,650 km² (1989 est.)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards


Bolivia - People 1996
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7,165,257 (July 1996 est.)
7,896,254 (July 1995 est.)

Growth rate:
1.82% (1996 est.)
2.25% (1995 est.)

Noun: Bolivian(s)
Adjective: Bolivian

Ethnic groups:
Quechua 30%
Aymara 25%
Mestizo (mixed European and Indian ancestry) 25%-30%
European 5%-15%

Languages: Spanish (official), Quechua (official), Aymara (official)

Roman Catholic 95%
Protestant (Evangelical Methodist)

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years:
39% (male 1,422,313; female 1,390,885) (July 1996 est.)
39% (male 1,565,624; female 1,542,931) (July 1995 est.)

15-64 years:
56% (male 1,959,989; female 2,042,135) (July 1996 est.)
57% (male 2,188,100; female 2,276,308) (July 1995 est.)

65 years and over:
5% (male 153,111; female 196,824) (July 1996 est.)
4% (male 148,872; female 174,419) (July 1995 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate:
1.82% (1996 est.)
2.25% (1995 est.)

Birth rate:
32.37 births/1000 population (1996 est.)
31.61 births/1000 population (1995 est.)

Death rate:
10.75 deaths/1000 population (1996 est.)
8.12 deaths/1000 population (1995 est.)

Net migration rate:
-3.41 migrant(s)/1000 population (1996 est.)
-1.01 migrant(s)/1000 population (1995 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: the clearing of land for agricultural purposes and the international demand for tropical timber are contributing to deforestation; soil erosion from overgrazing and poor cultivation methods (including slash-and-burn agriculture); desertification; loss of biodiversity; industrial pollution of water supplies used for drinking and irrigation
Current issues Natural hazards: cold, thin air of high plateau is obstacle to efficient fuel combustion, as well as to physical activity by those unaccustomed to it from birth; flooding in the northeast (March to April)
International agreements: party to_Biodiversity, Climate Change, Endangered Species, Law of the Sea, Nuclear Test Ban, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands; signed, but not ratified_Desertification, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection
International agreements note: Landlocked; shares control of Lago Titicaca, world's highest navigable lake (elevation 3,805 m), with Peru

Air pollutants

Sex ratio
At birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/female
All ages:
0.97 male(s)/female (1996 est.) Infant Mortality Rate:67.5 deaths/1000 live births (1996 est.)
70.6 deaths/1000 live births (1995 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 59.81 years (1996 est.); 63.85 years (1995 est.)
Male: 56.94 years (1996 est.); 61.39 years (1995 est.)
Female: 62.82 years (1996 est.); 66.43 years (1995 est.)

Total fertility rate:
4.25 children born/woman (1996 est.)
4.1 children born/woman (1995 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

Definition: age 15 and over that can read and write (1995 est.)
Total population: 83.1%
Male: 90.5%
Female: 76%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Bolivia - Government 1996
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Country name
Conventional long form: Republic of Bolivia
Conventional short form: Bolivia
Local long form: Republica de Bolivia
Local short form: Bolivia

Government type: Republic

Capital: La Paz (seat of government; Sucre (legal capital and seat of judiciary)

Administrative divisions: 9 departments (departamentos, singular_departamento; Chuquisaca, Cochabamba, Beni, La Paz, Oruro, Pando, Potosi, Santa Cruz, Tarija

Dependent areas

Independence: 6 August 1825 (from Spain)

National holiday: Independence Day, 6 August (1825)

Constitution: 2 February 1967

Legal system: Based on Spanish law and Code Napoleon; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: 18 years of age, universal and compulsory (married; 21 years of age, universal and compulsory (single)

Executive branch
Chief of state and head of government: President Gonzalo SANCHEZ DE LOZADA Bustamente (since 6 August 1993) and Vice President Victor Hugo CARDENAS Conde (since 6 August 1993) were elected for four-year terms by popular vote; election last held 6 June 1993 (next to be held NA May 1997); results_Gonzalo SANCHEZ DE LOZADA (MNR) 34%, Hugo BANZER Suarez (ADN/MIR alliance) 20%, Carlos PALENQUE Aviles (CONDEPA) 14%, Max FERNANDEZ Rojas (UCS) 13%, Antonio ARANIBAR Quiroga (MBL) 5%; no candidate received a majority of the popular vote; Gonzalo SANCHEZ DE LOZADA won a congressional runoff election on 4 August 1993 after forming a coalition with Max FERNANDEZ and Antonio ARANIBAR; FERNANDEZ died in a plane crash 26 November 1995
Cabinet: Cabinet; appointed by the president from panel proposed by the Senate

Legislative branch: Bicameral National Congress (Congreso Nacional) Chamber of Deputies (Camara De Diputados):Elections last held 6 June 1993 (next to be held May 1997; results_percent of vote by party NA; seats_(130 total) MNR 52, UCS 20, ADN 17, MIR 17, CONDEPA 13, MBL 7, ARBOL 1, ASD 1, EJE 1, PCD 1 Chamber of Senators (Camara De Senadores):Elections last held 6 June 1993 (next to be held May 1997; results_percent of vote by party NA; seats_(27 total) MNR 17, ADN 4, MIR 4, CONDEPA 1, UCS 1

Judicial branch: Supreme Court (Corte Suprema), judges appointed for a 10-year term by National Congress

Political parties and leaders


Diplomatic representation

Flag descriptionflag of Bolivia: Three equal horizontal bands of red (top), yellow, and green with the coat of arms centered on the yellow band; similar to the flag of Ghana, which has a large black five-pointed star centered in the yellow band

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Bolivia - Economy 1996
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Economy overview: With its long history of semifeudal social controls, dependence on volatile prices for its mineral exports, and bouts of hyperinflation, Bolivia has remained one of the poorest and least developed Latin American countries. However, Bolivia has experienced generally improving economic conditions since the PAZ Estenssoro administration (1985-89) introduced market-oriented policies which reduced inflation from 11,700% in 1985 to about 20% in 1988. PAZ Estenssoro was followed as president by Jaime PAZ Zamora (1989-93) who continued the free-market policies of his predecessor, despite opposition from his own party and from Bolivia's once powerful labor movement. By maintaining fiscal discipline, PAZ Zamora helped reduce inflation to 9.3% in 1993, while GDP grew by an annual average of 3.25% during his tenure. Inaugurated in August 1993, President SANCHEZ DE LOZADA has vowed to advance the market-oriented economic reforms he helped launch as PAZ Estenssoro's planning minister. His successes so far have included the signing of a free trade agreement with Mexico and progress on his unique privatization plan. The main privatization bill was passed by the Bolivian legislature in late March 1994. Since that time, the administration has privatized the electric power generation sector, the state airline, the state telephone company, and the national railroad. The state mining and petroleum companies are expected to be privatized in 1996.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate:
3.7% (1995 est.)
4.2% (1994 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 about 21% of GDP (including forestry and fisheries; principal commodities_coffee, coca, cotton, corn, sugarcane, rice, potatoes, timber; self-sufficient in food

Mining, smelting, petroleum, food and beverage, tobacco, handicrafts, clothing
Illicit drug industry reportedly produces 15% of its revenues

Industrial production growth rate: Growth rate 5% (1994 est.)

Labor force: 3.54 million
By occupation AgricultureNA servicesandutilities:

By occupation miningand construction: 7% (1993)
Labor force

Unemployment rate: 6.2% (1994 est.)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $3.75 billion
Expenditures: $3.75 billion, including capital expenditures of $556.2 million (1995 est.)

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: total value. $1.1 billion (f.o.b., 1994 est.)
Metals 39%
Natural gas 9%
Soybeans 11%
Jewelry 11%
Wood 8%

U.S. 26%
Argentina 15% (1993 est.)

Imports: total value:$1.21 billion (c.i.f., 1994 est.)
Capital goods 48%
Chemicals 11%
Petroleum 5%
Food 5% (1993 est.)

U.S. 24%
Argentina 13%
Brazil 11%
Japan 11% (1993 est.)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external:
$4.4 billion (November 1995)
$4.2 billion (January 1995)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: Bolivianos ($B) per US$1_4.9137 (December 1995), 4.8003 (1995), 4.6205 (1994), 4.2651 (1993), 3.9005 (1992), 3.5806 (1991), 3.1727 (1990)

Bolivia - Energy 1996
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 2.116 billion kWh

Electricity consumption
Per capita: 367 kWh (1994)

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

Bolivia - Communication 1996
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system: 144,300 telephones (1987 est.); new subscribers face bureaucratic difficulties; most telephones in La Paz and other cities; microwave radio relay system being expanded; improved international services
Local: NA
Intercity: microwave radio relay system
International: 1 INTELSAT (Atlantic Ocean) earth station

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Bolivia - Military 1996
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Military expenditures
Dollar figure: $145 million; 1.9% of GDP (1996; $134 million; 1.9% of GDP (1994)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Bolivia - Transportation 1996
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 1,017
With paved runways over 3047 m: 3
With paved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 4
With paved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 3
With paved runways under 914 m: 750
With unpaved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 2
With unpaved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 69
With unpaved runways 914 to 1523 m: 186 (1995 est.)

Airports with paved runways
Over 3047 m: 3
2438 to 3047 m: 4
15-24 to 2437 m: 3
Under 914 m: 750

Airports with unpaved runways
2438 to 3047 m: 2
15-24 to 2437 m: 69
914 to 1523 m: 186 (1995 est.)


Pipelines: Crude oil 1,800 km; petroleum products 580 km; natural gas 1,495 km



Waterways: 10,000 km of commercially navigable waterways

Merchant marine: total:1 cargo ship (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 4,214 GRT/6,390 DWT (1995 est.)

Ports and terminals

Bolivia - Transnational issues 1996
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Disputes international

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs: World's third-largest cultivator of coca (after Peru and Colombia) with an estimated 48,600 hectares under cultivation in 1995, a one percent increase in overall cultivation of coca over 1994 levels; Bolivia, however, is the second-largest producer of harvested coca leaf; even so, voluntary and forced eradication programs resulted in leaf production dropping from 89,800 metric tons in 1994 to 85,000 tons in 1995; government considers all but 12,000 hectares illicit; intermediate coca products and cocaine exported to or through Colombia and Brazil to the US and other international drug markets; alternative crop program aims to reduce illicit coca cultivation


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