Iraq 2002Iraq

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Iraq - Introduction 2002
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Background: Formerly part of the Ottoman Empire Iraq became an independent kingdom in 1932. A 'republic' was proclaimed in 1958 but in actuality a series of military strongmen have ruled the country since then the latest being SADDAM Husayn. Territorial disputes with Iran led to an inconclusive and costly eight-year war (1980-88). In August 1990 Iraq seized Kuwait but was expelled by US-led UN coalition forces during January-February 1991. The victors did not occupy Iraq however thus allowing the regime to stay in control. Following Kuwait's liberation the UN Security Council (UNSC) required Iraq to scrap all weapons of mass destruction and long-range missiles and to allow UN verification inspections. UN trade sanctions remain in effect due to incomplete Iraqi compliance with relevant UNSC resolutions.

Iraq - Geography 2002
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Location: Middle East bordering the Persian Gulf between Iran and Kuwait

Geographic coordinates: 33 00 N 44 00 E

Map referenceMiddle East

Total: 437,072 km²
Water: 4,910 km²
Land: 432,162 km²
Comparative: slightly more than twice the size of Idaho

Land boundaries
Total: 3,650 km
Border countries: (6) Iran 1,458 km; , Jordan 181 km; , Kuwait 240 km; , Saudi Arabia 814 km; , Syria 605 km; , Turkey 352 km

Coastline: 58 km

Maritime claims
Continental shelf: not specified
Territorial sea: 12 NM

Climate: mostly desert; mild to cool winters with dry hot cloudless summers; northern mountainous regions along Iranian and Turkish borders experience cold winters with occasionally heavy snows that melt in early spring sometimes causing extensive flooding in central and southern Iraq

Terrain: mostly broad plains; reedy marshes along Iranian border in south with large flooded areas; mountains along borders with Iran and Turkey

Extremes lowest point: Persian Gulf 0 m
Extremes highest point: Haji Ibrahim 3,600 m

Natural resources: petroleum natural gas phosphates sulfur
Land use

Land use
Arable land: 11.89%
Permanent crops: 0.78%
Other: 87.33% (1998 est.)

Irrigated land: 35,250 km² (1998 est.)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards: dust storms sandstorms floods

Note: strategic location on Shatt al Arab waterway and at the head of the Persian Gulf

Iraq - People 2002
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Population: 24,001,816 (July 2002 est.)
Growth rate: 2.82% (2002 est.)
Below poverty line: NA%

Noun: Iraqi
Adjective: Iraqi

Ethnic groups: Arab 75%-80% Kurdish 15%-20% Turkoman Assyrian or other 5%

Languages: Arabic Kurdish (official in Kurdish regions) Assyrian Armenian

Religions: Muslim 97% (Shi'a 60%-65% Sunni 32%-37%) Christian or other 3%

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years: 41.1% (male 5,003,755; female 4,849,238)
15-64 years: 55.9% (male 6,794,265; female 6,624,662)
65 years and over: 3% (male 341,520; female 388,376) (2002 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate: 2.82% (2002 est.)

Birth rate: 34.2 births/1000 population (2002 est.)

Death rate: 6.02 deaths/1000 population (2002 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1000 population (2002 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: government water control projects have drained most of the inhabited marsh areas east of An Nasiriyah by drying up or diverting the feeder streams and rivers; a once sizable population of Shi'a Muslims who have inhabited these areas for thousands of years has been displaced; furthermore the destruction of the natural habitat poses serious threats to the area's wildlife populations; inadequate supplies of potable water; development of Tigris-Euphrates Rivers system contingent upon agreements with upstream riparian Turkey; air and water pollution; soil degradation (salination) and erosion; desertification
International agreements party to: Law of the Sea, Nuclear Test Ban
International agreements signed but not ratified: Environmental Modification

Air pollutants

Sex ratio
At birth: 1.05 male/female
Under 15 years: 1.03 male/female
15-64 years: 1.03 male/female
65 years and over: 0.88 male/female
Total population: 1.02 male/female (2002 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 57.61 deaths/1000 live births (2002 est.)

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 67.38 years
Female: 68.5 years (2002 est.)
Male: 66.31 years

Total fertility rate: 4.63 children born/woman (2002 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access

Adult prevalence rate: less than 0.01% (1999 est.)
People living with hivaids: NA
Deaths: NA

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: 58%
Male: 70.7%
Female: 45% (1995 est.)

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Iraq - Government 2002
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Country name
Conventional long form: Republic of Iraq
Conventional short form: Iraq
Local short form: Al Iraq
Local long form: Al Jumhuriyah al Iraqiyah

Government type: republic

Capital: Baghdad

Administrative divisions: 18 governorates (muhafazat singular - muhafazah); Al Anbar Al Basrah Al Muthanna Al Qadisiyah An Najaf Arbil As Sulaymaniyah At Ta'mim Babil Baghdad Dahuk Dhi Qar Diyala Karbala' Maysan Ninawa Salah ad Din Wasit

Dependent areas

Independence: 3 October 1932 (from League of Nations mandate under British administration)

National holiday: Revolution Day 17 July (1968)

Constitution: 22 September 1968 effective 16 July 1970 (provisional constitution); new constitution drafted in 1990 but not adopted

Legal system: based on Islamic law in special religious courts civil law system elsewhere; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state: President SADDAM Husayn (since 16 July 1979); Vice Presidents Taha Muhyi al-Din MARUF (since 21 April 1974) and Taha Yasin RAMADAN (since 23 March 1991)
Elections: president and vice presidents elected by a two-thirds majority of the Revolutionary Command Council; regular election last held 17 October 1995 (next scheduled for 2002); note - in place of the 2002 election, a presidential referendum was held on 15 October 2002 in which the presidency of SADDAM Husayn was extended for a fifth consecutive seven-year term
Election results: SADDAM Husayn reelected president; percent of vote - 99%; Taha Muhyi al-Din MARUF and Taha Yasin RAMADAN elected vice presidents; percent of vote - NA%; note - in a presidential referendum held 15 October 2002, SADDAM Husayn's term was extended for another seven years
Cabinet: Council of Ministers; note - there is also a Revolutionary Command Council or RCC with eight members as of 2001 (Chairman SADDAM Husayn, Vice Chairman Izzat IBRAHIM al-Duri) which controls the ruling Ba'th Party; the RCC is the highest executive and legislative body and the most powerful political entity in the country; new RCC members must come from the Regional Command Leadership of the Ba'th Party
Head of government: Prime Minister SADDAM Husayn (since 29 May 1994); Deputy Prime Ministers Tariq Mikhail AZIZ (since NA 1979), Hikmat Mizban Ibrahim al-AZZAWI (since 30 July 1999), Ahmad Husayn al-KHUDAYIR (since NA July 2001), and Abd al-Tawab Mullah al-HUWAYSH (since NA July 2001)

Legislative branch
Elections: last held 27 March 2000 (next to be held NA March 2004)
Election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - NA

Judicial branch: Court of Cassation

Political parties and leaders: Ba'th Party [SADDAM Husayn central party leader]


Diplomatic representation
In the us: none; note - Iraq has an Interest Section in the Algerian Embassy headed by Akram AL DOURI; address: Iraqi Interests Section Algerian Embassy 1801 P Street NW Washington DC 20,036; telephone: [1] (202) 483-7,500; FAX: [1] (202) 462-5,066
From the us: none; note - the US has an Interests Section in the Polish Embassy in Baghdad; address: P. O. Box 2,051 Hay Babel Baghdad; telephone: [964] (1) 718-9,267; FAX: [964] (1) 718-9,297

Flag descriptionflag of Iraq: three equal horizontal bands of red (top) white and black with three green five-pointed stars in a horizontal line centered in the white band; the phrase ALLAHU AKBAR (God is Great) in green Arabic script - Allahu to the right of the middle star and Akbar to the left of the middle star - was added in January 1991 during the Persian Gulf crisis; similar to the flag of Syria which has two stars but no script and the flag of Yemen which has a plain white band; also similar to the flag of Egypt which has a symbolic eagle centered in the white band

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Iraq - Economy 2002
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Economy overview: Iraq's economy is dominated by the oil sector which has traditionally provided about 95% of foreign exchange earnings. In the 1980s financial problems caused by massive expenditures in the eight-year war with Iran and damage to oil export facilities by Iran led the government to implement austerity measures borrow heavily and later reschedule foreign debt payments; Iraq suffered economic losses from the war of at least $100 billion. After hostilities ended in 1988 oil exports gradually increased with the construction of new pipelines and restoration of damaged facilities. Iraq's seizure of Kuwait in August 1990 subsequent international economic sanctions and damage from military action by an international coalition beginning in January 1991 drastically reduced economic activity. Although government policies supporting large military and internal security forces and allocating resources to key supporters of the regime have hurt the economy implementation of the UN's oil-for-food program in December 1996 has helped improve conditions for the average Iraqi citizen. For the first six six-month phases of the program Iraq was allowed to export limited amounts of oil in exchange for food medicine and some infrastructure spare parts. In December 1999 the UN Security Council authorized Iraq to export under the program as much oil as required to meet humanitarian needs. Oil exports are now more than three-quarters prewar level. However 28% of Iraq's export revenues under the program are deducted to meet UN Compensation Fund and UN administrative expenses. The drop in GDP in 2001 was largely the result of the global economic slowdown and lower oil prices. Per capita food imports have increased significantly while medical supplies and health care services are steadily improving. Per capita output and living standards are still well below the prewar level but any estimates have a wide range of error.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate: -5.7% (2001 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: 6%
Industry: 13%
Services: 81% (1993 est.)

Agriculture products: wheat barley rice vegetables dates cotton; cattle sheep

Industries: petroleum chemicals textiles construction materials food processing

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Labor force: 4.4 million (1989) (1989)
By occupation agriculture: NA%
By occupation industry: NA%
By occupation services: NA%
Labor force

Unemployment rate: NA%

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line: NA%

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share
Lowest 10: NA%
Highest 10: NA%

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $NA
Expenditures: $NA, including capital expenditures of $NA

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: calendar year

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices: 60% (2001 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: $15.8 billion f.o.b. (2001 est.)
Commodities: crude oil
Partners: US 46.2% Italy 12.2% France 9.6% Spain 8.6% (2000)

Imports: $11 billion f.o.b. (2001 est.)
Commodities: food medicine manufactures
Partners: France 22.5% Australia 22% China 5.8% Russia 5.8% (2000)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $62.2 billion (2001 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: Iraqi dinars per US dollar - 0.3109 (fixed official rate since 1982); black market rate - Iraqi dinars per US dollar - 2000 (December 2001) 1910 (December 1999) 1815 (December 1998) 1530 (December 1997) 910 (December 1996); note - subject to wide fluctuations

Iraq - Energy 2002
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 27.3 billion kWh (2000)
By source fossil fuel: 98%
By source hydro: 2%
By source other: 0% (2000)
By source nuclear: 0%

Electricity consumption: 25.389 billion kWh (2000)

Electricity exports: 0 kWh (2000)

Electricity imports: 0 kWh (2000)

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Iraq - Communication 2002
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular: NA; service available in northern Iraq (2001)

Telephone system
General assessment: reconstitution of damaged telecommunication facilities began after the Gulf war; most damaged facilities have been rebuilt
Domestic: the network consists of coaxial cables and microwave radio relay links
International: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean), 1 Intersputnik (Atlantic Ocean region), and 1 Arabsat (inoperative); coaxial cable and microwave radio relay to Jordan, Kuwait, Syria, and Turkey; Kuwait line is probably nonoperational

Broadcast media

Internet country code: .iq

Internet users: 12,500 (2001)

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Iraq - Military 2002
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Military expenditures
Dollar figure: $1.3 billion (FY00)
Percent of gdp: NA%

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Iraq - Transportation 2002
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 108 (2001)
With paved runways total: 77
With paved runways over 3047 m: 21
With paved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 36
With paved runways 914 to 1523 m: 6
With paved runways under 914 m: 9 (2002)
With paved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 5
With unpaved runways total: 73
With unpaved runways under 914 m: 11 (2002)
With unpaved runways over 3047 m: 5
With unpaved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 5
With unpaved runways 914 to 1523 m: 28
With unpaved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 24

Airports with paved runways
Total: 77
Over 3047 m: 21
2438 to 3047 m: 36
914 to 1523 m: 6
Under 914 m: 9 (2002)
15-24 to 2437 m: 5

Airports with unpaved runways
Total: 73
Under 914 m: 11 (2002)
Over 3047 m: 5
2438 to 3047 m: 5
914 to 1523 m: 28
15-24 to 2437 m: 24

Heliports: 5 (2002)

Pipelines: crude oil 4,350 km; petroleum products 725 km; natural gas 1360 km

Total: 2,339 km
Standard gauge: 2,339 km 1.435-m gauge (2001)


Note: Shatt al Arab is usually navigable by maritime traffic for about 130 km; channel has been dredged to 3 m and is in use; Tigris and Euphrates Rivers have navigable sections for shallow-draft boats; Shatt al Basrah canal was navigable by shallow-draft craft before closing in 1991 because of the Gulf war

Merchant marine
Total: 25 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 186,709 GRT/278,575 DWT
Ships by type: cargo 14, passenger 1, passenger/cargo 1, petroleum tanker 8, roll on/roll off 1 (2002 est.)

Ports and terminals

Iraq - Transnational issues 2002
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Disputes international: despite restored diplomatic relations in 1990 lacks maritime boundary with Iran and disputes land boundary navigation channels and other issues from eight-year war; in November 1994 Iraq formally accepted the UN-demarcated border with Kuwait which had been spelled out in Security Council Resolutions 687 (1991) 773 (1993) and 883 (1993); this formally ends earlier claims to Kuwait and to Bubiyan and Warbah islands although the government continues periodic rhetorical challenges; dispute over water development plans by Turkey for the Tigris and Euphrates rivers

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs


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