Cook Islands( Australia-Oceania )


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Background:
Named after Captain COOK, who sighted them in 1770, the islands became a British protectorate in 1888. By 1900, administrative control was transferred to New Zealand; in 1965, residents chose self-government in free association with New Zealand. The emigration of skilled workers to New Zealand and government deficits are continuing problems.
Geography
Location:
Oceania, group of islands in the South Pacific Ocean, about half way between Hawaii and New Zealand
Geographic coordinates:
21 14 S, 159 46 W
Area:
total: 236 sq km
land: 236 sq km
water: 0 sq km
Area comparative:
1.3 times the size of Washington, DC
Land boundaries:
0 km
Coastline:
120 km
Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
Climate:
tropical oceanic; moderated by trade winds; a dry season from April to November and a more humid season from December to March
Terrain:
low coral atolls in north; volcanic, hilly islands in south
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
highest point: Te Manga 652 m
Natural resources:
NEGL
Land use:
arable land: 8.33%
permanent crops: 4.17%
other: 87.5% (2011)
Irrigated land:
NA
Total renewable water resources:
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic or industrial or agricultural):
Natural hazards:
typhoons (November to March)
Environment current issues:
NA
Environment international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection
Geography note:
the northern Cook Islands are seven low-lying, sparsely populated, coral atolls; the southern Cook Islands, where most of the population lives, consist of eight elevated, fertile, volcanic isles, including the largest, Rarotonga, at 67 sq km
People and Society
Nationality:
noun: Cook Islander(s)
adjective: Cook Islander
Ethnic groups:
Cook Island Maori (Polynesian) 81.3%, part Cook Island Maori 6.7%, other 11.9% (2011 est.)
Languages:
English (official) 86.4%, Cook Islands Maori (Rarotongan) (official) 76.2%, other 8.3% (2011 est.)
Religions:
Protestant 62.8% (Cook Islands Christian Church 49.1%, Seventh-Day Adventist 7.9%, Assemblies of God 3.7%, Apostolic Church 2.1%), Roman Catholic 17%, Mormon 4.4%, other 8%, none 5.6%, no response 2.2% (2011 est.)
Population:
10,134
note: the Cook Islands' Ministry of Finance & Economic Management estimated the resident population to have been 13,700 in September 2013 (July 2014 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 22.8% (male 1,224/female 1,084)
15-24 years: 17.9% (male 971/female 845)
25-54 years: 38% (male 1,937/female 1,917)
55-64 years: 10.3% (male 555/female 487)
65 years and over: 10.6% (male 548/female 566) (2014 est.)
Dependency ratios:
Median age:
total: 34.4 years
male: 33.8 years
female: 35 years (2014 est.)
Population growth rate:
-3% (2014 est.)
Birth rate:
14.7 births/1,000 population (2014 est.)
Death rate:
7.8 deaths/1,000 population (2014 est.)
Net migration rate:
Urbanization:
urban population: 73.5% of total population (2011)
rate of urbanization: 0.88% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Major urban areas population:
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.04 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.13 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.15 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 1.07 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.96 male(s)/female
total population: 1.07 male(s)/female (2014 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: 14.33 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 17.43 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 11.08 deaths/1,000 live births (2014 est.)
Maternal mortality rate:
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 75.38 years
male: 72.56 years
female: 78.33 years (2014 est.)
Total fertility rate:
2.27 children born/woman (2014 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate:
Health expenditures:
5.5% of GDP (2011)
Physicians density:
2.89 physicians/1,000 population (2009)
Hospital bed density:
Drinking water source:
improved: urban: 99.9% of population
rural: 99.9% of population
total: 99.9% of population
unimproved: urban: 0.1% of population
rural: 0.1% of population
total: 0.1% of population (2012 est.)
Sanitation facility access:
improved: urban: 97.2% of population
rural: 97.2% of population
total: 97.2% of population
unimproved: urban: 2.8% of population
rural: 2.8% of population
total: 2.8% of population (2012 est.)
HIV or AIDS adult prevalence rate:
NA
HIV or AIDS people living with HIV or AIDS:
NA
HIV or AIDS deaths:
NA
Obesity adult prevalence rate:
63.7% (2008)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight:
Education expenditures:
3.1% of GDP (2011)
Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 95%
male: NA
female: NA
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 13 years
male: 12 years
female: 13 years (2011)
Child labor children ages 5-14:
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24:
Government
Country name:
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Cook Islands
former: Harvey Islands
Government type:
self-governing parliamentary democracy
Capital:
name: Avarua
geographic coordinates: 21 12 S, 159 46 W
time difference: UTC-10 (5 hours behind Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions:
none
Independence:
none (became self-governing in free association with New Zealand on 4 August 1965 and has the right at any time to move to full independence by unilateral action)
National holiday:
Constitution Day, first Monday in August (1965)
Constitution:
effective 4 August 1965 (Cook islands Constitution Act 1964); amended many times, last in 2004 (2004)
Legal system:
common law similar to New Zealand common law
International law organization participation:
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration (New Zealand normally retains responsibility for external affairs); accepts ICCt jurisdiction
Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952) represented by Tom J. MARSTERS (since 9 August 2013); New Zealand High Commissioner Joanna KEMPKERS (since 19 July 2013)
head of government: Prime Minister Henry PUNA (since 30 November 2010)
cabinet: Cabinet chosen by the prime minister; collectively responsible to Parliament
elections: the monarchy is hereditary; the UK representative appointed by the monarch; the New Zealand high commissioner appointed by the New Zealand Government; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition usually becomes prime minister
Legislative branch:
bicameral Parliament consists of a House of Ariki, or upper house, made up of traditional leaders and a Legislative Assembly, or lower house, (24 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
note: the House of Ariki advises on traditional matters and maintains considerable influence but has no legislative powers
elections: last held on 17 November 2010 (next to be held by 2014)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - CIP 16, Demo 8
Judicial branch:
highest court(s): Court of Appeal (consists of the chief justice and 3 judges of the High Court); High Court (consists of the chief justice and at least 4 judges and organized into civil, criminal, and land divisions)
note - appeals beyond the Cook Islands Court of Appeal are brought before the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (in London)
judge selection and term of office: High Court chief justice appointed by the Queen's Representative on the advice of the Executive Council tendered by the prime minister; other judges appointed by the Queen's Representative, on the advice of the Executive Council tendered by the chief justice, High Court chief justice, and the minister of justice; chief justice and judges appointed for 3-year renewable terms
subordinate courts: justices of the peace
Political parties and leaders:
Cook Islands Party or CIP [Henry PUNA]
Democratic Party or Demo [Dr. Terepai MAOATE]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Reform Conference (lobby for political system changes)
other: various groups lobbying for political change
International organization participation:
ACP, ADB, AOSIS, FAO, ICAO, ICRM, IFAD, IFRCS, IMO, IMSO, IOC, ITUC (NGOs), OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, SPC, UNESCO, UPU, WHO, WMO
Diplomatic representation in the US:
none (self-governing in free association with New Zealand)
Diplomatic representation from the US:
none (self-governing in free association with New Zealand)
Flag description:
blue, with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and a large circle of 15 white five-pointed stars (one for every island) centered in the outer half of the flag
National symbol(s):
National anthem:
name: "Te Atua Mou E" (To God Almighty)
lyrics/music: Tepaeru Te RITO/Thomas DAVIS
note: adopted 1982; as prime minister, Sir Thomas DAVIS composed the anthem; his wife, a tribal chief, wrote the lyrics
Economy
Economy overview:
Like many other South Pacific island nations, the Cook Islands' economic development is hindered by the isolation of the country from foreign markets, the limited size of domestic markets, lack of natural resources, periodic devastation from natural disasters, and inadequate infrastructure. Agriculture, employing more than one-quarter of the working population, provides the economic base with major exports of copra and citrus fruit. Black pearls are the Cook Islands' leading export. Manufacturing activities are limited to fruit processing, clothing, and handicrafts. Trade deficits are offset by remittances from emigrants and by foreign aid overwhelmingly from New Zealand. In the 1980s and 1990s, the country lived beyond its means, maintaining a bloated public service and accumulating a large foreign debt. Subsequent reforms, including the sale of state assets, the strengthening of economic management, the encouragement of tourism, and a debt restructuring agreement, have rekindled investment and growth.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$183.2 million (2005 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate):
$183.2 million (2005 est.)
GDP real growth rate:
0.1% (2005 est.)
GDP per capita (PPP):
$9,100 (2005 est.)
Gross national saving:
GDP composition, by end use:
GDP composition, by sector of origin:
agriculture: 5.1%
industry: 12.7%
services: 82.1% (2010 est.)
Agriculture products:
copra, citrus, pineapples, tomatoes, beans, pawpaws, bananas, yams, taro, coffee; pigs, poultry
Industries:
fruit processing, tourism, fishing, clothing, handicrafts
Industrial production growth rate:
1% (2002)
Labor force:
6,820 (2001)
Labor force by occupation:
agriculture: 29%
industry: 15%
services: 56% (1995)
Unemployment rate:
13.1% (2005)
Population below poverty line:
NA%
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Distribution of family income Gini index:
Budget:
revenues: $70.95 million
expenditures: $69.05 million (FY05/06)
Taxes and other revenues:
38.7% of GDP (FY05/06)
Budget surplus or deficit:
Public debt:
Fiscal year:
1 April - 31 March
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
2.2% (2011 est.)
2.2% (2011 est.)
Central bank discount rate:
Commercial bank prime lending rate:
Stock of narrow money:
$38.99 million (31 December 2011 est.)
$38.99 million (31 December 2011 est.)
Stock of broad money:
$148.2 million (31 December 2011 est.)
$170.9 million (31 December 2010 est.)
Stock of domestic credit:
Market value of publicly traded shares:
Current account balance:
$26.67 million (2005)
Exports:
$5.222 million (2005 est.)
$3,000
Exports commodities:
copra, papayas, fresh and canned citrus fruit, coffee; fish; pearls and pearl shells; clothing
Exports partners:
Imports:
$83.49 million (2011 est.)
$80.55 million
Imports commodities:
foodstuffs, textiles, fuels, timber, capital goods
Imports partners:
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
Debt external:
$141 million (1996 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment at home:
Stock of direct foreign investment abroad:
Exchange rates:
NZ dollars (NZD) per US dollar -
1.247 (2013)
1.2659 (2011 est.)
1.3874 (2010)
1.6002 (2009)
1.4151 (2008)
Energy
Electricity production:
31.13 million kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity consumption:
28.95 million kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity exports:
0 kWh (2012 est.)
Electricity imports:
0 kWh (2012 est.)
Electricity installed generating capacity:
8,090 kW (2010 est.)
Electricity from fossil fuels:
98.9% of total installed capacity (2010 est.)
Electricity from nuclear fuels:
0% of total installed capacity (2010 est.)
Electricity from hydroelectric plants:
0% of total installed capacity (2010 est.)
Electricity from other renewable sources:
1.1% of total installed capacity (2010 est.)
Crude oil production:
0 bbl/day (2012 est.)
Crude oil exports:
0 bbl/day (2010 est.)
Crude oil imports:
0 bbl/day (2010 est.)
Crude oil proved reserves:
0 bbl (1 January 2013 est.)
Refined petroleum products production:
0 bbl/day (2010 est.)
Refined petroleum products consumption:
974 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Refined petroleum products exports:
0 bbl/day (2010 est.)
Refined petroleum products imports:
485 bbl/day (2010 est.)
Natural gas production:
0 cu m (2011 est.)
Natural gas consumption:
0 cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas exports:
0 cu m (2011 est.)
Natural gas imports:
0 cu m (2011 est.)
Natural gas proved reserves:
0 cu m (1 January 2013 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy:
75,400 Mt (2011 est.)
Communications
Telephones mobile cellular:
7,800 (2009)
Telephone system:
general assessment: Telecom Cook Islands offers international direct dialing, Internet, email, fax, and Telex
domestic: individual islands are connected by a combination of satellite earth stations, microwave systems, and VHF and HF radiotelephone; within the islands, service is provided by small exchanges connected to subscribers by open-wire, cable, and fiber-optic cable
international: country code - 682; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean)
Telephones main lines in use:
7,200 (2009)
Broadcast media:
1 privately owned TV station broadcasts from Rarotonga providing a mix of local news and overseas-sourced programs; a satellite program package is available; 6 radio stations broadcast with 1 reportedly reaching all of the islands (2009)
Internet country code:
.ck
Internet users:
6,000 (2009)
Internet hosts:
3,562 (2012)
Transportation
Airports:
11 (2013)
Airports with paved runways:
total: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2013)
Airports with unpaved runways:
total: 10
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 7
under 914 m: 1 (2013)
Heliports:
Pipelines:
Railways:
Roadways:
total: 320 km
paved: 33 km
unpaved: 287 km (2003)
Merchant marine:
total: 35
by type: bulk carrier 2, cargo 25, passenger 1, refrigerated cargo 6, roll on/roll off 1
foreign-owned: 23 (Estonia 1, Germany 1, Lithuania 1, Norway 8, NZ 2, Russia 1, Sweden 3, Turkey 4, UK 2) (2010)
Ports and terminals:
major seaport(s): Avatiu
Military
Military branches:
no regular military forces; National Police Department (2009)
Military service age and obligation:
Manpower available for military service:
Manpower fit for military service:
males age 16-49: 2,198
females age 16-49: 2,156 (2010 est.)
Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
male: 127
female: 107 (2010 est.)
Military expenditures:
Transnational Issues
Disputes international:
none
Refugees and internally displaced persons:
Trafficking in persons: