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Haiti Factbook

GEOGRAPHY
Location: Caribbean, western one-third of the island of Hispaniola, between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, west of the Dominican Republic

Total Area: 27,750 sq km

Area comparative: slightly smaller than Maryland

Climate: tropical; semiarid where mountains in east cut off trade winds

Terrain: mostly rough and mountainous

Natural resources: bauxite, copper, calcium carbonate, gold, marble, hydropower


PEOPLE
Population: 8,308,504 (July 2006 est.)

Age structure: 0-14 years - 42.4%, 15-64 years - 54.2%, 65 years and over - 3.4% (2006 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 71.65 deaths/1,000 births (2006 est.)

Life expectancy at birth: total population - 53.23 years (2006 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.94 children born/woman (2006 est.)

Ethnic groups: black 95%, mulatto and white 5%

Religions: Roman Catholic 80%, Protestant 16%, none 1%, other 3% (1982) note: roughly half of the population also practices Voodoo

Languages: French (official), Creole (official)

Literacy: 52.9% (definition - 15 and over can read and write)


GOVERNMENT
Government type: elected government

Capital: Port-au-Prince

Independence: 1 January 1804 (from France)

Chief of State: President Rene Preval


ECONOMY
Population below poverty line: 80% (2003 est.)

Labor force by occupation: agriculture 66%, services 25%, industry 9%

Unemployment rate: widespread unemployment and underemployment; more than two-thirds of the labor force do not have formal jobs

Industries: sugar refining, flour milling, textiles, cement, light assembly industries based on imported parts

Agriculture products: coffee, mangoes, sugarcane, rice, corn, sorghum, wood

Export commodities: manufactures, coffee, oil, cocoa

Import commodities: food, manufactured goods, machinery and transport equipment, fuels, raw materials

Currency: gourde (HTG)

Exchange rate: gourde per US dollar - 38.4 (September 2006)

Source of Information: The World Factbook 2006