Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)( South America )


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Background:
Although first sighted by an English navigator in 1592, the first landing (English) did not occur until almost a century later in 1690, and the first settlement (French) was not established until 1764. The colony was turned over to Spain two years later and the islands have since been the subject of a territorial dispute, first between Britain and Spain, then between Britain and Argentina. The UK asserted its claim to the islands by establishing a naval garrison there in 1833. Argentina invaded the islands on 2 April 1982. The British responded with an expeditionary force that landed seven weeks later and after fierce fighting forced an Argentine surrender on 14 June 1982. With hostilities ended and Argentine forces withdrawn, UK administration resumed. In response to renewed calls from Argentina for Britain to relinquish control of the islands, a referendum was held in March 2013, which resulted in 99.8% of the population voting to remain a part of the UK.
Geography
Location:
Southern South America, islands in the South Atlantic Ocean, about 500 km east of southern Argentina
Geographic coordinates:
51 45 S, 59 00 W
Area:
total: 12,173 sq km
land: 12,173 sq km
water: 0 sq km
note: includes the two main islands of East and West Falkland and about 200 small islands
Area comparative:
slightly smaller than Connecticut
Land boundaries:
0 km
Coastline:
1,288 km
Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 12 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm
exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm
Climate:
cold marine; strong westerly winds, cloudy, humid; rain occurs on more than half of days in year; average annual rainfall is 24 inches in Stanley; occasional snow all year, except in January and February, but typically does not accumulate
Terrain:
rocky, hilly, mountainous with some boggy, undulating plains
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Mount Usborne 705 m
Natural resources:
fish, squid, wildlife, calcified seaweed, sphagnum moss
Land use:
arable land: 0%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 100% (99% permanent pastures, 1% other) (2011)
Irrigated land:
NA
Total renewable water resources:
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic or industrial or agricultural):
Natural hazards:
strong winds persist throughout the year
Environment current issues:
overfishing by unlicensed vessels is a problem; reindeer were introduced to the islands in 2001 for commercial reasons; this is the only commercial reindeer herd in the world unaffected by the 1986 Chornobyl disaster
Environment international agreements:
Geography note:
deeply indented coast provides good natural harbors; short growing season
People and Society
Nationality:
noun: Falkland Islander(s)
adjective: Falkland Island
Ethnic groups:
Falkland Islander 57%, British 24.6%, St. Helenian 9.8%, Chilean 5.3%, other 3.4% (2012 est.)
Languages:
English 89%, Spanish 7.7%, other 3.3% (2006 est.)
Religions:
Christian 66%, none 32%, other 2% (2012 est.)
Population:
2,840 (July 2012 est.)
Age structure:
Dependency ratios:
Median age:
Population growth rate:
0.01% (2009 est.)
Birth rate:
NA
Death rate:
Net migration rate:
NA
Urbanization:
urban population: 74.1% of total population (2011)
rate of urbanization: 0.92% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Major urban areas population:
STANLEY (capital) 2,000 (2011)
Sex ratio:
total population: 1.11 male(s)/female
note: sex ratio is somewhat skewed by the high proportion of males at the Royal Air Force station, Mount Pleasant Airport (MPA); excluding MPA, the sex ratio of the total population would be 1.01 (2012 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: NA
male: NA
female: NA
Maternal mortality rate:
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: NA
male: NA
female: NA
Total fertility rate:
NA
Contraceptive prevalence rate:
Health expenditures:
Physicians density:
Hospital bed density:
Drinking water source:
Sanitation facility access:
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:
Children under the age of 5 years underweight:
Education expenditures:
Literacy:
NA
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
Child labor children ages 5-14:
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24:
Government
Country name:
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)
Government type:
NA
Capital:
name: Stanley
geographic coordinates: 51 42 S, 57 51 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: none scheduled for 2014
Administrative divisions:
none (overseas territory of the UK; also claimed by Argentina)
Independence:
none (overseas territory of the UK; also claimed by Argentina)
National holiday:
Liberation Day, 14 June (1982)
Constitution:
previous 1985; latest entered into force 1 January 2009 (2011)
Legal system:
English common law and local statutes
International law organization participation:
Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952)
head of government: Governor Nigel HAYWOOD (since 16 October 2010) is the Queen's representative; Chief Executive Keith PADGETT (since 1 February 2012)
cabinet: Executive Council; three members elected by the Legislative Council, two ex officio members (chief executive and the financial secretary), and the governor; the governor must obey the rulings of the Executive Council on domestic affairs
elections: the monarchy is hereditary; governor appointed by the monarch; chief executive appointed by the governor
Legislative branch:
unicameral Legislative Assembly (10 seats; 2 members are ex officio and 8 are elected by popular vote; members to serve four-year terms); presided over by the governor
elections: last held on 7 November 2013 (next to be held in November 2017)
election results: percent of vote - NA; seats - independents 8
Judicial branch:
highest court(s): Court of Appeal (consists of the court president, the chief justice as an ex officio, non-resident member, and 2 justices of appeal); Supreme Court (consists of the chief justice)
note - appeals beyond the Court of Appeal are referred to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (in London)
judge selection and term of office: all justices appointed by the governor; tenure specified in each justice's instrument of appointment
subordinate courts: Magistrate's Court (senior magistrate presides over civil and criminal divisions); Court of Summary Jurisdiction
Political parties and leaders:
none; all independents
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Falkland Islands Association (supports freedom of the people from external causes)
International organization participation:
UPU
Diplomatic representation in the US:
none (overseas territory of the UK)
Diplomatic representation from the US:
none (overseas territory of the UK; also claimed by Argentina)
Flag description:
blue with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and the Falkland Island coat of arms centered on the outer half of the flag; the coat of arms contains a white ram (sheep raising was once the major economic activity) above the sailing ship Desire (whose crew discovered the islands) with a scroll at the bottom bearing the motto DESIRE THE RIGHT
National symbol(s):
ram
National anthem:
name: "Song of the Falklands""
lyrics/music: Christopher LANHAM
note: adopted 1930s; the song is the local unofficial anthem; as a territory of the United Kingdom, "God Save the Queen" is official (see United Kingdom)
Economy
Economy overview:
The economy was formerly based on agriculture, mainly sheep farming but fishing and tourism currently comprise the bulk of economic activity. In 1987, the government began selling fishing licenses to foreign trawlers operating within the Falkland Islands' exclusive fishing zone. These license fees net more than $40 million per year, which help support the island's health, education, and welfare system. The waters around the Falkland Islands are known for their squid, which account for around 75% of the annual 200,000 ton fish catch. Dairy farming supports domestic consumption; crops furnish winter fodder. Foreign exchange earnings come from shipments of high-grade wool to the UK and from the sale of postage stamps and coins. In 2001, the government purchased 100 reindeer with the intent to increase the number to 10,000 over the following 20 years so that venison could be exported to Scandinavia and Chile. Tourism, especially eco-tourism, is increasing rapidly, with about 69,000 visitors in 2009. The British military presence also provides a sizeable economic boost. The islands are now self-financing except for defense. In 1993 the British Geological Survey announced a 200-mile oil exploration zone around the islands, and early seismic surveys suggest substantial reserves capable of producing 500,000 barrels per day. Political tensions between the UK and Argentina remain high following the start of oil drilling activities in the waters. In September 2011, a British exploration firm announced that it plans to commence oil production in 2016.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$164.5 million (2007 est.)
$105.1 million (2002 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate):
$164.5 million (2007 est.)
GDP real growth rate:
GDP per capita (PPP):
$55,400 (2002 est.)
Gross national saving:
GDP composition, by end use:
GDP composition, by sector of origin:
agriculture: 95%
industry: NA%
services: NA% (1996)
Agriculture products:
fodder and vegetable crops; venison, sheep, dairy products; fish, squid
Industries:
fish and wool processing; tourism
Industrial production growth rate:
NA%
Labor force:
5,246 (2006)
Labor force by occupation:
agriculture: 95% (mostly sheepherding and fishing)
industry and services: 5% (1996)
Unemployment rate:
4.1% (2010)
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: $67.1 million
expenditures: $75.3 million (FY09/10)
Taxes and other revenues:
40.8% of GDP (FY09/10)
Budget surplus or deficit:
Public debt:
Fiscal year:
1 April - 31 March
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
1.2% (2003)
3.6% (1998)
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:
$125 million (2004 est.)
Exports commodities:
wool, hides, meat, venison, fish, squid
Exports partners:
Imports:
$90 million (2004 est.)
Imports commodities:
fuel, food and drink, building materials, clothing
Imports partners:
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
Debt external:
$NA
Stock of direct foreign investment at home:
Stock of direct foreign investment abroad:
Exchange rates:
Falkland pounds (FKP) per US dollar -
0.6307 (2014)
0.6391 (2013)
0.6472 (2010)
0.6175 (2009)
Energy
Electricity production:
19 million kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity consumption:
17.67 million kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity exports:
0 kWh (2012 est.)
Electricity imports:
0 kWh (2012 est.)
Electricity installed generating capacity:
10,000 kW (2010 est.)
Electricity from fossil fuels:
90% 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:
10% 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:
300 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Refined petroleum products exports:
0 bbl/day (2010 est.)
Refined petroleum products imports:
313 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:
45,740 Mt (2011 est.)
Communications
Telephones mobile cellular:
3,450 (2012)
Telephone system:
domestic: government-operated radiotelephone and private VHF/CB radiotelephone networks provide effective service to almost all points on both islands
international: country code - 500; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) with links through London to other countries (2011)
Telephones main lines in use:
1,980 (2012)
Broadcast media:
TV service provided by a multi-channel service provider; radio services provided by the public broadcaster, Falkland Islands Radio Service, broadcasting on both AM and FM frequencies, and by the British Forces Broadcasting Service (BFBS) (2007)
Internet country code:
.fk
Internet users:
2,900 (2009)
Internet hosts:
110 (2012)
Transportation
Airports:
7 (2013)
Airports with paved runways:
total: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2013)
Airports with unpaved runways:
total: 5
under 914 m: 5 (2013)
Heliports:
Pipelines:
Railways:
Roadways:
total: 440 km
paved: 50 km
unpaved: 390 km (2008)
Merchant marine:
Ports and terminals:
major seaport(s): Stanley
Military
Military branches:
no regular military forces
Military service age and obligation:
Manpower available for military service:
Manpower fit for military service:
Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
Military expenditures:
Transnational Issues
Disputes international:
Argentina, which claims the islands in its constitution and briefly occupied them by force in 1982, agreed in 1995 to no longer seek settlement by force; UK continues to reject Argentine requests for sovereignty talks
Refugees and internally displaced persons:
Trafficking in persons: