Statistical information Puerto Rico 1996Puerto%20Rico

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

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Puerto Rico - Introduction 1996
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Background: Discovered by Columbus in 1493 the island was ceded by Spain to the US in 1898 following the Spanish-American War. A popularly elected governor has served since 1948. In plebiscites held in 1967 and 1993 voters chose to retain commonwealth status.

Puerto Rico - Geography 1996
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Location: Caribbean, island between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, east of the Dominican Republic

Geographic coordinates

Map reference

Total: 9,104 km²
Land: 8,959 km²
Comparative: slightly less than three times the size of Rhode Island

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 501 km

Maritime claims
Exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: Tropical marine, mild, little seasonal temperature variation

Terrain: Mostly mountains with coastal plain belt in north; mountains precipitous to sea on west coast; sandy beaches along most coastal areas

Extremes lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
Extremes highest point: Cerro de Punta 1,338 m

Natural resources:
Some copper and nickel
Potential for onshore and offshore crude oil

Land use

Land use
Arable land: 8%
Permanent crops: 9%
Permanent pastures: 41%
Forests and woodland: 20%
Other: 22%

Irrigated land: 390 km² (1989 est.)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards


Puerto Rico - People 1996
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3,819,023 (July 1996 est.)
3,812,569 (July 1995 est.)

Growth rate:
0.18% (1996 est.)
0.16% (1995 est.)

Noun: Puerto Rican(s) (U.S. citizens)
Adjective: Puerto Rican

Ethnic groups: Hispanic

Languages: Spanish, English

Roman Catholic 85%
Protestant denominations and other 15%

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years:
25% (male 484,038; female 461,175) (July 1996 est.)
25% (male 489,127; female 466,596) (July 1995 est.)

15-64 years:
65% (male 1,201,841; female 1,279,707) (July 1996 est.)
65% (male 1,195,785; female 1,274,765) (July 1995 est.)

65 years and over: 10% (male 174,274; female 217,988) (July 1996 est.) 10% (male 172,580; female 213,716) (July 1995 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate:
0.18% (1996 est.)
0.16% (1995 est.)

Birth rate:
15.56 births/1000 population (1996 est.)
15.92 births/1000 population (1995 est.)

Death rate:
7.46 deaths/1000 population (1996 est.)
7.47 deaths/1000 population (1995 est.)

Net migration rate:
-6.35 migrant(s)/1000 population (1996 est.)
-6.81 migrant(s)/1000 population (1995 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: the recent drought has caused water levels in reservoirs to drop and prompted water rationing for more than one-half of the population
Current issues Natural hazards: periodic droughts
International agreements: NA
International agreements note: Important location along the Mona Passage_a key shipping lane to the Panama Canal; San Juan is one of the biggest and best natural harbors in the Caribbean; many small rivers and high central mountains ensure land is well watered; south coast relatively dry; fertile coastal plain belt in north

Air pollutants

Sex ratio
At birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.94 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.8 male(s)/female
All ages:
0.95 male(s)/female (1996 est.) Infant Mortality Rate:12.4 deaths/1000 live births (1996 est.)
12.8 deaths/1000 live births (1995 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 75.38 years (1996 est.); 75.1 years (1995 est.)
Male: 71.13 years (1996 est.); 70.78 years (1995 est.)
Female: 79.89 years (1996 est.); 79.66 years (1995 est.)

Total fertility rate:
1.94 children born/woman (1996 est.)
1.98 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 (1980)
Total population: 89%
Male: 90%
Female: 88%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Puerto Rico - Government 1996
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Country name
Conventional long form: Commonwealth of Puerto Rico
Conventional short form: Puerto Rico

Government type: Commonwealth associated with the U.S.

Capital: San Juan

Administrative divisions: None (commonwealth associated with the U.S.; note_there are 78 municipalities

Dependent areas

Independence: None (commonwealth associated with the U.S.)

National holiday: U.S. Independence Day, 4 July (1776)

Constitution: Ratified 3 March 1952; approved by U.S. Congress 3 July 1952; effective 25 July 1952

Legal system: Based on Spanish civil code

International law organization participation


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

Executive branch
Chief of state: President William Jefferson CLINTON (since 20 January 1993); Vice President Albert GORE, Jr. (since 20 January 1993)
Head of government: Governor Pedro ROSSELLO (since 2 January 1993); election last held 3 November 1992 (next to be held 5 November 1996); results_Pedro ROSSELLO (PNP) 50%, Victoria MUNOZ (PPD) 46%, Fernando MARTIN (PIP) 4%

Legislative branch: Bicameral Legislative Assembly Senate:Elections last held 3 November 1992 (next to be held 5 November 1996; results_percent of vote by party NA; seats_(29 total) PNP 20, PPD 8, PIP 1 House of Representatives:Elections last held 3 November 1992 (next to be held NA November 1996; results_percent of vote by party NA; seats_(53 total) PNP 36, PPD 16, PIP 1 U.S. House of Representatives:Elections last held 3 November 1992 (next to be held 5 November 1996; results_percent of vote by party NA; seats_(1 total) PNP 1 (Carlos Romero BARCELO; note_Puerto Rico elects one representative to the U.S. House of Representatives

Judicial branch: Supreme Court, justices appointed by the governor with the consent of the Senate; Superior Courts, justices appointed by the governor with the consent of the Senate; Municipal Courts, justices appointed by the governor with the consent of the Senate

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: Caricom (observer), ECLAC (associate), FAO (associate), ICFTU, Interpol (subbureau), IOC, WCL, WFTU, WHO (associate), WToO (associate)

Diplomatic representation

Flag descriptionflag of Puerto%20Rico: Five equal horizontal bands of red (top and bottom) alternating with white; a blue isosceles triangle based on the hoist side bears a large white five-pointed star in the center; design based on the U.S. flag

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Puerto Rico - Economy 1996
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Economy overview: Puerto Rico has one of the most dynamic economies in the Caribbean region. Industry has surpassed agriculture as the primary sector of economic activity and income. Encouraged by duty-free access to the US and by tax incentives, US firms have invested heavily in Puerto Rico since the 1950s. US minimum wage laws apply. Important industries include pharmaceuticals, electronics, textiles, petrochemicals, and processed foods. Sugar production has lost out to dairy production and other livestock products as the main source of income in the agricultural sector. Tourism has traditionally been an important source of income for the island, with estimated arrivals of nearly 3.9 million tourists in 1993.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate:
3.3% (1995 est.)
2.6% (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 only 3% of labor force and just over 1% of GDP; crops_sugarcane, coffee, pineapples, plantains, bananas; livestock_cattle, chickens; imports a large share of food needs (1993)

Manufacturing accounts for 39.4% of GDP
Manufacturing of pharmaceuticals, electronics, apparel, food products, instruments

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

Labor force: 1.2 million (1993)
By occupation Government: 22%
By occupation Manufacturing: 17%
By occupation Trade: 20%
By occupation Construction: 6%
By occupation Communications and transportation: 5%
By occupation Other: 30% (1993)
Labor force

Unemployment rate: 16% (1994)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $5.1 billion
Expenditures: $5.1 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (FY94/95)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: 1 July_30 June

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. $21.8 billion (1994)
Canned tuna
Beverage concentrates
Medical equipment

Partners: U.S. 86.2% (1993)

Imports: total value:$16.7 billion (1994)
Petroleum products

Partners: U.S. 69.2% (1993)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: NA

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: U.S. currency is used

Puerto Rico - Energy 1996
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 15.6 billion kWh

Electricity consumption
Per capita: 3,819 kWh (1993)

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

Puerto Rico - Communication 1996
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system: 1,166,231 telephones (1992 est.); modern system, integrated with that of the U.S. by high capacity submarine cable and INTELSAT with high-speed data capability; digital telephone system with about 1 million lines; cellular telephone service (1990)
Local: NA
Intercity: NA
International: 1 INTELSAT earth station and submarine cable

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Puerto Rico - Military 1996
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Military expenditures

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Puerto Rico - Transportation 1996
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 23
With paved runways over 3047 m: 3
With paved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 3
With paved runways 914 to 1523 m: 2 (1995 est.)
With paved runways under 914 m: 7

Airports with paved runways
Over 3047 m: 3
15-24 to 2437 m: 3
914 to 1523 m: 2 (1995 est.)
Under 914 m: 7

Airports with unpaved runways






Merchant marine: None

Ports and terminals

Puerto Rico - Transnational issues 1996
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Disputes international

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs


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