Statistical information Guatemala 2001Guatemala

Map of Guatemala | Geography | People | Government | Economy | Energy | Communication
Military | Transportation | Transnational Issues | Year:  | More stats

Guatemala in the World
Guatemala in the World


Guatemala - Introduction 2001
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Background: Guatemala was freed of Spanish colonial rule in 1821. During the second half of the 20th century it experienced a variety of military and civilian governments as well as a 36-year guerrilla war. In 1996 the government signed a peace agreement formally ending the conflict which had led to the death of more than 100,000 people and had created some 1 million refugees.

Guatemala - Geography 2001
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Location: Middle America bordering the Caribbean Sea between Honduras and Belize and bordering the North Pacific Ocean between El Salvador and Mexico

Geographic coordinates: 15 30 N 90 15 W

Map referenceCentral America and the Caribbean

Total: 108,890 km²
Land: 108,430 km²
Water: 460 km²
Comparative: slightly smaller than Tennessee

Land boundaries
Total: 1,687 km
Border countries: (4) Belize 266 km; , El Salvador 203 km; , Honduras 256 km; , Mexico 962 km

Coastline: 400 km

Maritime claims
Continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
Exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
Territorial sea: 12 NM

Climate: tropical; hot humid in lowlands; cooler in highlands

Terrain: mostly mountains with narrow coastal plains and rolling limestone plateau (Peten)

Extremes lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
Extremes highest point: Volcan Tajumulco 4,211 m

Natural resources: petroleum nickel rare woods fish chicle hydropower
Land use

Land use
Arable land: 12%
Permanent crops: 5%
Permanent pastures: 24%
Forests and woodland: 54%
Other: 5% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 1250 km² (1993 est.)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards: numerous volcanoes in mountains with occasional violent earthquakes; Caribbean coast subject to hurricanes and other tropical storms

Note: no natural harbors on west coast

Guatemala - People 2001
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Population: 12,974,361 (July 2001 est.)
Growth rate: 2.6% (2001 est.)
Below poverty line: 60% (2000 est.)

Noun: Guatemalan
Adjective: Guatemalan

Ethnic groups: Mestizo (mixed Amerindian-Spanish or assimilated Amerindian - in local Spanish called Ladino) approximately 55% Amerindian or predominantly Amerindian approximately 43% whites and others 2%

Languages: Spanish 60% Amerindian languages 40% (more than 20 Amerindian languages including Quiche Cakchiquel Kekchi Mam Garifuna and Xinca)

Religions: Roman Catholic Protestant indigenous Mayan beliefs

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years: 42.11% (male 2,789,189; female 2,674,747)
15-64 years: 54.25% (male 3,518,209; female 3,519,851)
65 years and over: 3.64% (male 220,640; female 251,725) (2001 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate: 2.6% (2001 est.)

Birth rate: 34.61 births/1000 population (2001 est.)

Death rate: 6.79 deaths/1000 population (2001 est.)

Net migration rate: -1.84 migrant(s)/1000 population (2001 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: deforestation; soil erosion; water pollution; Hurricane Mitch damage
International agreements party to: Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
International agreements signed but not ratified: Antarctic-Environmental Protocol

Air pollutants

Sex ratio
At birth: 1.05 male/female
Under 15 years: 1.04 male/female
15-64 years: 1 male/female
65 years and over: 0.88 male/female
Total population: 1.01 male/female (2001 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 45.79 deaths/1000 live births (2001 est.)

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 66.51 years
Male: 63.85 years
Female: 69.31 years (2001 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.58 children born/woman (2001 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access

Adult prevalence rate: 1.38% (1999 est.)
People living with hivaids: 73,000 (1999 est.)
Deaths: 3,600 (1999 est.)

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 can read and write
Total population: 63.6%
Male: 68.7%
Female: 58.5% (2000 est.)

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Guatemala - Government 2001
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Country name
Conventional long form: Republic of Guatemala
Conventional short form: Guatemala
Local long form: Republica de Guatemala
Local short form: Guatemala

Government type: constitutional democratic republic

Capital: Guatemala

Administrative divisions: 22 departments (departamentos singular - departamento); Alta Verapaz Baja Verapaz Chimaltenango Chiquimula El Progreso Escuintla Guatemala Huehuetenango Izabal Jalapa Jutiapa Peten Quetzaltenango Quiche Retalhuleu Sacatepequez San Marcos Santa Rosa Solola Suchitepequez Totonicapan Zacapa

Dependent areas

Independence: 15 September 1821 (from Spain)

National holiday: Independence Day 15 September (1821)

Constitution: 31 May 1985 effective 14 January 1986; note - suspended 25 May 1993 by former President SERRANO; reinstated 5 June 1993 following ouster of president; amended November 1993

Legal system: civil law system; judicial review of legislative acts; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal (active duty members of the armed forces may not vote)

Executive branch
Chief of state: President Alfonso Antonio PORTILLO Cabrera (since 14 January 2000); Vice President Juan Francisco REYES Lopez (since 14 January 2000); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
Head of government: President Alfonso Antonio PORTILLO Cabrera (since 14 January 2000); Vice President Juan Francisco REYES Lopez (since 14 January 2000); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
Cabinet: Council of Ministers named by the president
Elections: president elected by popular vote for a four-year term; election last held 7 November 1999; runoff held 26 December 1999 (next to be held NA November 2003)
Election results: Alfonso Antonio PORTILLO Cabrera elected president; percent of vote - Alfonso Antonio PORTILLO Cabrera (FRG) 68%, Oscar BERGER Perdomo (PAN) 32%

Legislative branch
Elections: last held on 7 November 1999 (next to be held in November 2003)
Election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - FRG 63, PAN 37, ANN 9, DCG 2, UD/LOV 1, PLP 1
Note: for the 7 November 1999 election, the number of congressional seats was increased from 80 to 113

Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Justice or Corte Suprema de Justicia (thirteen members serve concurrent five-year terms and elect a president of the Court each year from among their number; the president of the Supreme Court of Justice also supervises trial judges around the country who are named to five-year terms); Constitutional Court or Corte de Constitutcionalidad (five judges are elected for concurrent five-year terms by Congress each serving one year as president of the Constitutional Court; one is elected by Congress one elected by the Supreme Court of Justice one appointed by the President one elected by Superior Counsel of Universidad San Carlos de Guatemala and one by Colegio de Abogados)

Political parties and leaders: Authentic Integral Development or DIA [Jorge Luis ORTEGA]; Democratic Union or UD [Jose Luis CHEA Urruela]; Green Party or LOV [Jose ASTURIAS Rudecke]; Guatemalan Christian Democracy or DCG [Vinicio CEREZO Arevalo]; Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity or URNG [Pablo MONSANTO also known as Jorge SOTO]; Guatemalan Republican Front or FRG [Efrain RIOS Montt]; New Nation Alliance or ANN [leader NA] which includes the URNG; National Advancement Party or PAN [Leonel LOPEZ Rodas]; Progressive Liberator Party or PLP [Acisclo VALLADARES Molina]


Diplomatic representation
In the us chief of mission: Ambassador Ariel RIVERA Irias
In the us chancery: 2,220 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20,008
In the us telephone: [1] (202) 745-4,952
In the us fax: [1] (202) 745-1908
In the us consulates general: Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, and San Francisco
From the us chief of mission: Ambassador Prudence BUSHNELL
From the us embassy: 7-01 Avenida Reforma, Zone 10, Guatemala City
From the us mailing address: APO AA 34,024
From the us telephone: [502] 331-1541/55
From the us fax: [502] 334-8,477

Flag descriptionflag of Guatemala: three equal vertical bands of light blue (hoist side) white and light blue with the coat of arms centered in the white band; the coat of arms includes a green and red quetzal (the national bird) and a scroll bearing the inscription LIBERTAD 15 DE SEPTIEMBRE DE 1821 (the original date of independence from Spain) all superimposed on a pair of crossed rifles and a pair of crossed swords and framed by a wreath

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Guatemala - Economy 2001
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Economy overview: The agricultural sector accounts for about one-fourth of GDP two-thirds of exports and half of the labor force. Coffee sugar and bananas are the main products. Former President ARZU (1996-2000) worked to implement a program of economic liberalization and political modernization. The 1996 signing of the peace accords which ended 36 years of civil war removed a major obstacle to foreign investment. In 1998 Hurricane Mitch caused relatively little damage to Guatemala compared to its neighbors. Ongoing challenges include increasing government revenues negotiating further assistance from international donors and increasing the efficiency and openness of both government and private financial operations. Despite low international prices for Guatemala's main commodities the economy grew by 3% in 2000 and is forecast to grow by 4% in 2001. Guatemala along with Honduras and El Salvador recently concluded a free trade agreement with Mexico and has moved to protect international property rights. However the PORTILLO administration has undertaken a review of privatizations under the previous administration thereby creating some uncertainty among investors.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate: 3% (2000 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: 23%
Industry: 20%
Services: 57% (2000 est.)

Agriculture products: sugarcane corn bananas coffee beans cardamom; cattle sheep pigs chickens

Industries: sugar textiles and clothing furniture chemicals petroleum metals rubber tourism

Industrial production growth rate: 4.1% (1999)

Labor force: 4.2 million (1999 est.)
By occupation agriculture: 50%
By occupation industry: 15%
By occupation services: 35% (1999 est.)
Labor force

Unemployment rate: 7.5% (1999 est.)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line: 60% (2000 est.)

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share
Lowest 10: 0.6%
Highest 10: 46.6% (1989)

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $2.2 billion
Expenditures: $1.8 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2001 est.)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: calendar year

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices: 6% (2000 est.)

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: $2.9 billion (f.o.b. 2000)
Commodities: coffee sugar bananas fruits and vegetables cardamom meat apparel petroleum electricity
Partners: US 51.4% El Salvador 8.7% Honduras 5% Costa Rica 3.4% Germany 2.7% (1998)

Imports: $4.4 billion (f.o.b. 2000)
Commodities: fuels machinery and transport equipment construction materials grain fertilizers electricity
Partners: US 42.8% Mexico 9.9% Japan 4.8% El Salvador 4.3% Venezuela 3.8% (1998)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $4.7 billion (2000 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: quetzales per US dollar - 7.8020 (January 2001) 7.7632 (2000) 7.3856 (1999) 6.3947 (1998) 6.0653 (1997) 6.0495 (1996) 5.8103 (1995)

Guatemala - Energy 2001
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 3.785 billion kWh (1999)
By source fossil fuel: 38.31%
By source hydro: 61.69%
By source nuclear: 0%
By source other: 0% (1999)

Electricity consumption: 3.295 billion kWh (1999)

Electricity exports: 435 million kWh (1999)

Electricity imports: 210 million kWh (1999)

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Guatemala - Communication 2001
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular: 663,296 (September 2000)

Telephone system
General assessment: fairly modern network centered in the city of Guatemala
Domestic: NA
International: connected to Central American Microwave System; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)

Broadcast media

Internet country code: .gt

Internet users: 65,000 (2000)

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Guatemala - Military 2001
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Military expenditures
Dollar figure: $120 million (FY99)
Percent of gdp: 0.6% (FY99)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Guatemala - Transportation 2001
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 477 (2000 est.)
With paved runways total: 11
With paved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 3
With paved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 1
With paved runways 914 to 1523 m: 5
With paved runways under 914 m: 2 (2000 est.)
With unpaved runways total: 466
With unpaved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 1
With unpaved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 9
With unpaved runways 914 to 1523 m: 124
With unpaved runways under 914 m: 332 (2000 est.)

Airports with paved runways
Total: 11
2438 to 3047 m: 3
15-24 to 2437 m: 1
914 to 1523 m: 5
Under 914 m: 2 (2000 est.)

Airports with unpaved runways
Total: 466
2438 to 3047 m: 1
15-24 to 2437 m: 9
914 to 1523 m: 124
Under 914 m: 332 (2000 est.)


Pipelines: crude oil 275 km

Total: 884 km (102 km privately owned)
Narrow gauge: 884 km 0.914-m gauge (single track)


Note: 260 km navigable year round; additional 730 km navigable during highwater season

Merchant marine: none (2000 est.)

Ports and terminals

Guatemala - Transnational issues 2001
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Disputes international: Guatemala periodically asserts claims to territory in southern Belize; to deter cross-border squatting both states in 2000 agreed to a 'line of adjacency' based on the de facto boundary which is not recognized by Guatemala

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs


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