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Tuvalu

 
Flag of Tuvalu
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Coordinates:
08.00 S  178.00 E

 
 
Introduction  Geography  People  Government  Economy
 
Communications  Transportation  Military  Transnational Issues

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Legend: DefinitionDefinition Field ListingField Listing Rank OrderRank Order
   Introduction    Tuvalu Top of Page
Background:
Definition Field Listing
In 1974, ethnic differences within the British colony of the Gilbert and Ellice Islands caused the Polynesians of the Ellice Islands to vote for separation from the Micronesians of the Gilbert Islands. The following year, the Ellice Islands became the separate British colony of Tuvalu. Independence was granted in 1978. In 2000, Tuvalu negotiated a contract leasing its Internet domain name ".tv" for $50 million in royalties over the next dozen years.
   Geography    Tuvalu Top of Page
Location:
Definition Field Listing
Oceania, island group consisting of nine coral atolls in the South Pacific Ocean, about one-half of the way from Hawaii to Australia
Geographic coordinates:
Definition Field Listing
8 00 S, 178 00 E
Map references:
Definition Field Listing
Oceania
Area:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 26 sq km
land: 26 sq km
water: 0 sq km
Area - comparative:
Definition Field Listing
0.1 times the size of Washington, DC
Land boundaries:
Definition Field Listing
0 km
Coastline:
Definition Field Listing
24 km
Maritime claims:
Definition Field Listing
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climate:
Definition Field Listing
tropical; moderated by easterly trade winds (March to November); westerly gales and heavy rain (November to March)
Terrain:
Definition Field Listing
very low-lying and narrow coral atolls
Elevation extremes:
Definition Field Listing
lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
highest point: unnamed location 5 m
Natural resources:
Definition Field Listing
fish
Land use:
Definition Field Listing
arable land: 0%
permanent crops: 66.67%
other: 33.33% (2005)
Irrigated land:
Definition Field Listing
NA
Natural hazards:
Definition Field Listing
severe tropical storms are usually rare, but, in 1997, there were three cyclones; low level of islands make them sensitive to changes in sea level
Environment - current issues:
Definition Field Listing
since there are no streams or rivers and groundwater is not potable, most water needs must be met by catchment systems with storage facilities (the Japanese Government has built one desalination plant and plans to build one other); beachhead erosion because of the use of sand for building materials; excessive clearance of forest undergrowth for use as fuel; damage to coral reefs from the spread of the Crown of Thorns starfish; Tuvalu is concerned about global increases in greenhouse gas emissions and their effect on rising sea levels, which threaten the country's underground water table; in 2000, the government appealed to Australia and New Zealand to take in Tuvaluans if rising sea levels should make evacuation necessary
Environment - international agreements:
Definition Field Listing
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note:
Definition Field Listing
one of the smallest and most remote countries on Earth; six of the coral atolls - Nanumea, Nui, Vaitupu, Nukufetau, Funafuti, and Nukulaelae - have lagoons open to the ocean; Nanumaya and Niutao have landlocked lagoons; Niulakita does not have a lagoon
   People    Tuvalu Top of Page
Population:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
11,810 (July 2006 est.)
Age structure:
Definition Field Listing
0-14 years: 30.2% (male 1,819/female 1,752)
15-64 years: 64.7% (male 3,715/female 3,923)
65 years and over: 5.1% (male 228/female 373) (2006 est.)
Median age:
Definition Field Listing
total: 24.6 years
male: 23.6 years
female: 26 years (2006 est.)
Population growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
1.51% (2006 est.)
Birth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
22.18 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Death rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
7.11 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Net migration rate:
Definition Field Listing
0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Sex ratio:
Definition Field Listing
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.61 male(s)/female
total population: 0.95 male(s)/female (2006 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 19.47 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 22.27 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 16.52 deaths/1,000 live births (2006 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total population: 68.32 years
male: 66.08 years
female: 70.66 years (2006 est.)
Total fertility rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
2.98 children born/woman (2006 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
Nationality:
Definition Field Listing
noun: Tuvaluan(s)
adjective: Tuvaluan
Ethnic groups:
Definition Field Listing
Polynesian 96%, Micronesian 4%
Religions:
Definition Field Listing
Church of Tuvalu (Congregationalist) 97%, Seventh-Day Adventist 1.4%, Baha'i 1%, other 0.6%
Languages:
Definition Field Listing
Tuvaluan, English, Samoan, Kiribati (on the island of Nui)
Literacy:
Definition Field Listing
NA
   Government    Tuvalu Top of Page
Country name:
Definition Field Listing
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Tuvalu
former: Ellice Islands
note: "Tuvalu" means "group of eight," referring to the country's eight traditionally inhabited islands
Government type:
Definition Field Listing
constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary democracy; began debating republic status in 1992
Capital:
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Funafuti; note - administrative offices are located in Vaiaku Village on Fongafale Islet
Administrative divisions:
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none
Independence:
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1 October 1978 (from UK)
National holiday:
Definition Field Listing
Independence Day, 1 October (1978)
Constitution:
Definition Field Listing
1 October 1978
Legal system:
Definition Field Listing
NA
Suffrage:
Definition Field Listing
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
Definition Field Listing
chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor General Filoimea TELITO (since 15 April 2005)
head of government: Prime Minister Maatia TOAFA (since 11 October 2004)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the governor general on the recommendation of the prime minister
elections: the monarch is hereditary; governor general appointed by the monarch on the recommendation of the prime minister; prime minister and deputy prime minister elected by and from the members of Parliament; election last held 11 October 2004 (next to be held following parliamentary elections in 2006)
election results: Saufatu SOPOANGA resigned parliamentary seat on 27 August 2004 following no-confidence vote on 25 August 2004; succeeded by Deputy Prime Minister Maatia TOAFA in an acting capacity on 27 August 2004; Maatia TOAFA confirmed Prime Minister in a Parliamentary election (8-7 vote) on 11 October 2004
Legislative branch:
Definition Field Listing
unicameral Parliament or Fale I Fono, also called House of Assembly (15 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
elections: last held 25 July 2002 (next to be held in 2006)
election results: percent of vote - NA%; seats - independents 15
Judicial branch:
Definition Field Listing
High Court (a chief justice visits twice a year to preside over its sessions; its rulings can be appealed to the Court of Appeal in Fiji); eight Island Courts (with limited jurisdiction)
Political parties and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
there are no political parties but members of Parliament usually align themselves in informal groupings
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
none
International organization participation:
Definition Field Listing
ACP, AsDB, C, FAO, IFRCS (observer), IMO, ITU, OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, SPC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UPU, WHO
Diplomatic representation in the US:
Definition Field Listing
Tuvalu does not have an embassy in the US - the country's only diplomatic post is in Fiji - Tuvalu does, however, have a UN office located at 800 2nd Avenue, Suite 400D, New York, NY 10017, telephone: [1] (212) 490-0534
Diplomatic representation from the US:
Definition Field Listing
the US does not have an embassy in Tuvalu; the US ambassador to Fiji is accredited to Tuvalu
Flag description:
Definition Field Listing
light blue with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant; the outer half of the flag represents a map of the country with nine yellow five-pointed stars symbolizing the nine islands
   Economy    Tuvalu Top of Page
Economy - overview:
Definition Field Listing
Tuvalu consists of a densely populated, scattered group of nine coral atolls with poor soil. The country has no known mineral resources and few exports. Subsistence farming and fishing are the primary economic activities. Fewer than 1,000 tourists, on average, visit Tuvalu annually. Government revenues largely come from the sale of stamps and coins and remittances from seamen on merchant ships abroad. About 1,000 Tuvaluans are being repatriated from Nauru, with the decline of phosphate resources there. Substantial income is received annually from an international trust fund established in 1987 by Australia, NZ, and the UK and supported also by Japan and South Korea. Thanks to wise investments and conservative withdrawals, this fund has grown from an initial $17 million to over $35 million in 1999. The US Government is also a major revenue source for Tuvalu because of payments from a 1988 treaty on fisheries. In an effort to reduce its dependence on foreign aid, the government is pursuing public sector reforms, including privatization of some government functions and personnel cuts of up to 7%. Tuvalu derives around $1.5 million per year from the lease of its ".tv" Internet domain name. With merchandise exports only a fraction of merchandise imports, continued reliance must be placed on fishing and telecommunications license fees, remittances from overseas workers, official transfers, and income from overseas investments.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$12.2 million (2000 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate):
Definition Field Listing
NA
GDP - real growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
3% (2000 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$1,100 (2000 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%
Labor force:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
7,000 (2001 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
Definition Field Listing
note: people make a living mainly through exploitation of the sea, reefs, and atolls and from wages sent home by those abroad (mostly workers in the phosphate industry and sailors)
Unemployment rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA%
Population below poverty line:
Definition Field Listing
NA%
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
Definition Field Listing
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
5% (2000 est.)
Budget:
Definition Field Listing
revenues: $22.5 million
expenditures: $11.2 million; including capital expenditures of $4.2 million (2000 est.)
Agriculture - products:
Definition Field Listing
coconuts; fish
Industries:
Definition Field Listing
fishing, tourism, copra
Industrial production growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA%
Exports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$1 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)
Exports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
copra, fish
Exports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
Italy 54.1%, Fiji 19.5%, Finland 7.3%, Ghana 4.1% (2005)
Imports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$31 million c.i.f. (2004 est.)
Imports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
food, animals, mineral fuels, machinery, manufactured goods
Imports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
Fiji 47%, Japan 18.4%, China 17.7%, Australia 8.9%, NZ 4.8% (2005)
Debt - external:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$NA
Economic aid - recipient:
Definition Field Listing
$13 million; note - major donors are Australia, Japan, and the US (1999 est.)
Currency (code):
Definition Field Listing
Australian dollar (AUD); note - there is also a Tuvaluan dollar
Exchange rates:
Definition Field Listing
Tuvaluan dollars or Australian dollars per US dollar - 1.3095 (2005), 1.3598 (2004), 1.5419 (2003), 1.8406 (2002), 1.9334 (2001)
Fiscal year:
Definition Field Listing
calendar year
   Communications    Tuvalu Top of Page
Telephones - main lines in use:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
700 (2002)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 (2004)
Telephone system:
Definition Field Listing
general assessment: serves particular needs for internal communications
domestic: radiotelephone communications between islands
international: country code - 688; international calls can be made by satellite
Radio broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
AM 1, FM 1, shortwave 0 (2004)
Television broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
0 (2004)
Internet country code:
Definition Field Listing
.tv
Internet users:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
1,300 (2002)
   Transportation    Tuvalu Top of Page
Airports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
1 (2005)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2005)
Roadways:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 8 km
paved: 8 km (2002)
Merchant marine:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 42 ships (1000 GRT or over) 165,607 GRT/257,474 DWT
by type: bulk carrier 1, cargo 36, container 2, passenger/cargo 2, petroleum tanker 1
foreign-owned: 25 (China 13, Germany 2, Hong Kong 7, Singapore 2, Thailand 1) (2005)
Ports and terminals:
Definition Field Listing
Funafuti
   Military    Tuvalu Top of Page
Military branches:
Definition Field Listing
no regular military forces; national police force
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
   Transnational Issues    Tuvalu Top of Page
Disputes - international:
Definition Field Listing
none

This page was last updated on 20 July, 2006


Source: CIA Factbook