|Panama||Plants and Animal||Back to Top|
The crops category is the largest within agriculture, but its share has fallen slightly, from 66.1 % in 1980 to 63.3 % in 1985. During that time, crop production was erratic, and annual growth averaged a mere 1.7 %. The major crops and foreign exchange earners were bananas and sugar. In the 1980s, crop production became increasingly diversified. The production of corn, coffee, beans, and tobacco has increased, as has that of such nonorthodox products as melons and flowers. Fruits (particularly citrus), cacao (the bean from which cocoa is derived), plantains, vegetables, and potatoes were produced on a minor scale; nevertheless, they were valuable cash crops for small farms.
From 1982 to 1985, poultry production grew rapidly, from 4.5 million chickens to 6.1 million. During the same time, annual egg production also increased, from 28,859 dozen to 31,205 dozen. Pork production has remained steady; the number of pigs in 1985 totalled 210,000.
|Panama||Communications||Back to Top|
general assessment: domestic and international facilities well developed
international: 1 coaxial submarine cable; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); connected to the Central American Microwave System
|Panama||Culture||Back to Top|
Panamanian society of the 1980s reflected the nation's unusual geographical position as a transit zone. Panama's role as a crossing point had long subjected the isthmus to a mixture of outside determines not typically associated with Latin America. The population included East Asian, South Asian, European, North American, and Middle Eastern immigrants and their offspring, who came to Panama to take advantage of the commercial opportunities connected with the Panama Canal. black Antilleans, descendants of Caribbean laborers who worked on the construction of the canal, formed the largest single minority group; as English-speaking Protestants, they were set apart from the majority by both language and religion. Tribal Indians, often isolated from the larger society, constituted roughly 5 % of the population in the 1980s. They were distinguished by language, their indigenous belief systems, and a mixture of other cultural practices.
Migration, both to cities and to less settled regions in the nation, was a critical component in contemporary social relations. City and nationside were linked because the urban-based elite owned ranches or plantations, farmers and ranchers provisioned cities, and migration was an experience common to tens of thousands of Panamanians. Land and an expanding urban economy were essential to absorb surplus labor from heavily populated regions of the nationside. It remained to be seen how the social system would function in the face of high urban unemployment in the more straitened economic circumstances of the late 1980s.
|Panama||Defence||Back to Top|
Military branches: an amendment to the Constitution abolished the armed forces, but there are security forces (Panamanian Public Forces or PPF includes the Panamanian National Police, National Maritime Service, and National Air Service)
Military manpower - availability: males age 15-49: 775,966 (2001 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service: males age 15-49: 530,916 (2001 est.)
|Panama||International Disputes||Back to Top|
|Panama||Economy||Back to Top|
Since colonial times, Panama’s location has made it a crossroads for trade and transit. This role assumed worldwide significance in the 20th century with the completion of the Panama Canal, which controlled Panama’s economy for decades and tied it closely to the United States. Panama’s gross domestic product (GDP) was $9.56 billion in 1999, equal to $3,400 per person. Commerce, finance, and business services constituted the core of Panama’s economy, contributing 76 % of the GDP. Most economic activity was concentrated in the urban area of central Panama surrounding the canal. In the 1990s the rural economy accounted for 10 % of the GDP and was primarily agricultural, producing farm and ranch commodities. Spending by the United States on military bases added another 5 %, or $366 million, to the GDP, but that ended when Panama assumed control of the canal in 1999.
Nearly three-fourths of the gross domestic product (GDP) is generated by the service sector—a greater proportion than in any other Latin American nation—and services employ the majority of the workforce. Services have grown mainly because of offshore banking and canal traffic; public administration and other services are also valuable. Agriculture and fishing account for less than one-tenth of the GDP but nearly one-fifth of the workforce.
Panama's economy is based primarily on a well-developed services area that accounts for three-fourths of GDP. Services include the Panama Canal, banking, the Colon Free Zone, insurance, container ports, flagship registry, and tourism. A slump in Colon Free Zone and agricultural exports, high oil prices, and the withdrawal of US military forces held back economic growth in 2000. The government plans public works programs, tax reforms, and new regional trade agreements in order to stimulate growth in 2001.
|Panama||Education||Back to Top|
Public education began in Panama soon after freedom from Colombia in 1903. The first efforts were guided by an extremely paternalistic view of the goals of education, as demonstrated in comments made in a 1913 meeting of the First Panamanian Educational Assembly, "The cultural heritage given to the child should be determined by the social position he will or should occupy. For this reason education should be different in accordance with the social class to which the student should be related." This elitist focus changed rapidly under United States determine.
Education is compulsory for 6 years and is provided free by the government through the university level. The government spent 17.6 % of its budget on education in 1998. Wealthier families usually send their children to the numerous private schools in the cities. In 1995, 361,900 elementary and 216,200 high school students were listed in the nation. School attendance by elementary-age children is nearly universal. Panama has one of the highest literacy rates in the region, 97 %.
|Panama||Government||Back to Top|
Government: administrator--under provisions of 1972 Constitution, as amended in 1978 and 1983, chief administrator is president of the republic, assisted by two vice presidents, all elected by popular vote for five-year terms. In late 1980s, de facto administrator authority remained, in hands of commander of Panama Defense Forces (Fuerzas de Defensa de Panamá--FDP). Legislature--sixty-seven-member unicameral Legislative Assembly created in 1983; members popularly elected for five-year terms that run concurrently with presidential term. Judiciary--Highest court is Supreme Court made up of nine members and nine alternates who serve ten-year terms after nomination by the administrator branch and ratification by Legislative Assembly. Supreme Court separated into three chambers for civil, penal, and administrative cases. Lower courts include superior tribunals, circuit courts, municipal courts, and night courts. Public Ministry, headed by attorney general, acts as state representative within judiciary.
Politics: Political culture traditionally characterized by personalism (personalismo), the tendency to give one's political loyalties to an individual rather than to a party or ideology. Politics from 1968 coup until his death in 1981 controlled by General Omar Torrijos Herrera, formally head of government from 1968 to 1978 and thereafter de facto head of government while commander of the National Guard. Torrijos's determine continued after his death, as both military and civilian leaders sought to lay claim to his political and social heritage. Proliferation of parties after 1980, when political system opened up again. Most activity separated into two main coalitions: pro-government and opposition. Pro-government coalition headed by party created by Torrijos: Democratic Revolutionary Party (Partido Revolucionario Democrático--PRD). Nation's principal opposition party was Authentic Panameñista Party (Partido Panameñista Auténtico--PPA) led by veteran politician Arnulfo Arias Madrid. Political crisis over deficiency of democratization and scandals associated with the FDP commander, General Manuel Antonio Noriega Morena, began in June 1987 and escalated throughout the year and into 1988. Opposition forces remained fragmented, but popular protests were orchestrated by the National Civic Crusade (Crusada Civilista Nacional--CCN), a coalition of civic, business, and professional forces.
International Relations: traditionally controlled by bilateral relations with United States; special relationship created by 1977 Panama Canal treaties continued to be most valuable aspect of foreign relations in late 1980s. Relations very strained and troubled, in late 1987 because of United States concerns over the deficiency of democratization and serious allegations of involvement of the FDP commander in drug trafficking and money laundering. Following negotiation of Panama Canal treaties, Panama has given more attention to other commercial and trade relations and particularly to the Central American peace process.
|Panama||History||Back to Top|
The history of the Panamanian isthmus, since Spaniards first landed on its shores in 1501, is a tale of treasure, treasure seekers, and peoples exploited; of clashes among empires, nations, and cultures; of adventurers and builders; of magnificent dreams fulfilled and simple needs unmet. In the wake of Vasco Nuñez de Balboa's torturous trek from the Atlantic to the Pacific in 1513, conquistadors seeking gold in Peru and beyond crossed the seas and recrossed with their treasures bound for Spain. The indigenous peoples who survived the diseases, massacres, and enslavement of the conquest ultimately fled into the forest or across to the San Blas Islands. Indian slaves were soon replaced by Africans.
In October 1978, the 1972 Constitution had been reformed to allow the legalization of political parties, and exiled political leaders were permitted to return to Panama. Torrijos formally stepped down as head of government, and a civilian president was elected. Torrijos, clearly remained the dominant force in the political system. Torrijos's shocking, sudden death in an airplane crash in July 1981 created a power vacuum in Panama. The newly erected democratic facade persisted, with a succession of civilian presidents controlled by the National Guard and its emergent leader, General Manuel Antonio Noriega Moreno, who had been in command since August 1983. Noriega successfully transformed the National Guard into the far larger Panama Defense Forces, a formidable power base for his increasing political control.
|Panama||Introduction||Back to Top|
Panama, republic, situated on the isthmus linking South America with Central and North America. The nation, which is bisected by the Panama Canal, is bounded on the north by the Caribbean Sea, on the east by Colombia, on the south by the Pacific Ocean, and on the west by Costa Rica. Panama's coastline is about 685 km (425 mi) long on the Caribbean and about 1,230 km (765 mi) long on the Pacific; the nation's total area is 75,517 sq km (29,157 sq mi), including the canal region. The capital is Panama City.Official Name- Republic of Panama
|Panama||Land||Back to Top|
Panama's land area totals around 7.7 million hectares, of which forests account for 4.1 million hectares, followed by pasture land (1.2 million hectares), and permanently cultivated fields.About 2 % of the land was used for roads and urban areas. Nearly all of the cultivated and pasture land was originally forested. A large amount of virgin land has been opened up for cultivation by the Pan-American Highway.
Much of the farming was of a subsistence nature and accomplished with a minimum of equipment. Plowing was generally not practiced on subsistence farms; the seeds were placed in holes made by a stick. Tree cutting, land clearing, weeding, and harvesting were accomplished with a few kinds of knives, principally the machete and the axe, which comprised the major farm implements.
|Panama||Languages||Back to Top|
Spanish, the official language of Panama, is spoken by all but a few Native Americans. About a quarter of the population also speaks English, the language of the West Indian minority and the international business community. Many other languages can be found in immigrant communities.
|Panama||Legal||Back to Top|
Legal system: based on civil law system; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court of Justice; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations vote: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory administrator branch: chief of state: President Mireya Elisa MOSCOSO Rodriguez (since 1 September 1999); First Vice President Arturo Ulises VALLARINO (since 1 September 1999); Second Vice President Dominador "Kaiser" Baldonero BAZAN Jimenez (since 1 September 1999); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government head of government: President Mireya Elisa MOSCOSO Rodriguez (since 1 September 1999); First Vice President Arturo Ulises VALLARINO (since 1 September 1999); Second Vice President Dominador "Kaiser" Baldonero BAZAN Jimenez (since 1 September 1999); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president elections: president and vice presidents elected on the same ticket by popular vote for five-year terms; election last held 2 May 1999 (next to be held NA May 2004) election results: Mireya Elisa MOSCOSO Rodriguez elected president; % of vote - Mireya Elisa MOSCOSO Rodriguez (PA) 44%, Martin TORRIJOS (PRD) 37% note: government coalition - PA, MOLIRENA, Democratic Change, MORENA, PLN, PS Legislative branch: unicameral Legislative Assembly or Asamblea Legislativa (71 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) elections: last held 2 May 1999 (next to be held NA May 2004) election results: % of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PRD 34, PA 18, PDC 5, PS 4, MOLIRENA 3, PLN 3, Democratic Change 2, PRC 1, MORENA 1 note: legislators from outlying rural districts are chosen on a plurality basis while districts located in more populous towns and cities elect multiple legislators by means of a proportion-based formula Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Justice or Corte Suprema de Justicia (nine judges appointed for 10-year terms); five superior courts; three courts of appeal
|Panama||Life||Back to Top|
In the late 1980s, family and kin continued to play a central role in the social lives of most Panamanians. An individual without kin to turn to for protection and aid was in a precarious position. Loyalty to one's kin was an ingrained value, and family ties were considered one's surest defense against a hostile and uncertain world. This loyalty often outweighed that given to a spouse; indeed, a man often gave priority to his responsibility to his parents or siblings over that extended to his wife.
Campesinos followed two distinct patterns in choosing godparents. The parents might choose a person of wealth, power, or prestige, thereby gaining an influential protector. Such a contact could give a parent the confidence to launch a child into an alien outside world, in which he or she might have little personal status or experience. By contrast, among some campesinos there was strong informal pressure in the opposite direction. They believed it was inappropriate to ask someone of higher economic status to act as a godparent, so they sought out instead a relative or friend, particularly one who lived in the same area. The choice here tended to reinforce existing social ties and loyalties.
|Panama||organization||Back to Top|
CCC, ECLAC, FAO, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, LAES, LAIA (observer), NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, RG, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
|Panama||People||Back to Top|
In mid-1987, Panama's population was around at 2.3 million, when 40 % of the population was under 15 years of age. This high proportion suggested continued pressure on the educational system to offer instruction and on the economy to create jobs in the next two decades. Population had increased more than 600 % since the nation's first census in 1911. The annual rate of increase ranged from less than 0.5 % in the economically depressed 1920s to more than 3 % in the decade from 1910 to 1920 and in the 1960s. Demographers projected an annual growth rate of 2.2 % in the 1980s, declining to 1.9 % by 1990-95. s
Panama has a population of 2,845,647 (2001 estimate), up from 2.4 million in 1990. The population is concentrated heavily along the Panama Canal and in the cities on either end of the passage. It is a highly various society, descended from native people and immigrants over thousands of years. In the 16th century, when the Spaniards came to the isthmus, it was occupied by Kuna Guaymí, Chocó, and other American Indian groups. Mestizos resulted from miscegenation between the Spanish and the Indians. During colonial times people from Africa were brought to the isthmus as slaves, and still other mixed ethnic types developed as the Africans entered the society. During the 19th century, with the construction of the Panama City–Colón railroad, new groups arrived—North Americans, French, and Chinese. Large numbers of West Indians came to Panama as labourers during the construction of the canal, and additional U.S. nationals, Spaniards, Italians, and Greeks also arrived.
|Panama||Politics||Back to Top|
Arnulfista Party or PA [Mireya Elisa MOSCOSO Rodriguez]; Christian Democratic Party or PDC [Ruben AROSEMENA]; Civic Renewal Party or PRC [Serguei DE LA ROSA]; Democratic Change [Ricardo MARTINELLI]; Democratic Revolutionary Party or PRD [Martin TORRIJOS]; National Liberal Party or PLN [Raul ARANGO Gasteazopo]; National Renovation Movement or MORENA [Pedro VALLARINO Cox]; Nationalist Republican Liberal Movement or MOLIRENA [Ramon MORALES]; Solidarity Party or PS [Samuel LEWIS Galindo] Political pressure groups and leaders: Chamber of Commerce; National Civic Crusade; National Council of Organized Workers or CONATO; National Union of Construction and Similar Workers (SUNTRACS); National Council of Private Enterprise or CONEP; Panamanian Association of Business administrators or APEDE; Panamanian Industrialists Society or SIP; Workers Confederation of the Republic of Panama or CTRP
|Panama||Provinces||Back to Top|
9 provinces (provincias, singular - provincia) and one territory* (comarca); Bocas del Toro, Chiriqui, Cocle, Colon, Darien, Herrera, Los Santos, Panama, San Blas*, and Veraguas
|Panama||Time||Back to Top|
|Panama||Currency and General Information||Back to Top|
|Panama Balboas||United States Dollars|
|1.00 PAB||1.00000 USD|
|1.00000 PAB||1 USD|
|Countries Currency Unit||USD/Unit||Units/USD|
|USD||United States Dollars||1.00000||1.00000|
|ATS||Austria Schillings **||0.0632609||15.8076|
|BEF||Belgium Francs **||0.0215788||46.3417|
|GBP||United Kingdom Pounds||1.42399||0.702251|
|CNY||China Yuan Renminbi||0.120813||8.27726|
|CZK||Czech Republic Koruny||0.0281883||35.4758|
|XCD||East Caribbean Dollars||0.370370||2.70000|
|FIM||Finland Markkaa **||0.146406||6.83034|
|FRF||France Francs **||0.132705||7.53550|
|DEM||Germany Deutsche Marks **||0.445074||2.24682|
|GRD||Greece Drachmae **||0.00255463||391.447|
|HKD||Hong Kong Dollars||0.128215||7.79939|
|IEP||Ireland Pounds **||1.10529||0.904738|
|ILS||Israel New Shekels||0.212386||4.70841|
|ITL||Italy Lire **||0.000449570||2,224.35|
|LUF||Luxembourg Francs **||0.0215788||46.3417|
|NZD||New Zealand Dollars||0.440474||2.27028|
|NLG||Netherlands Guilders **||0.395011||2.53158|
|PTE||Portugal Escudos **||0.00434198||230.310|
|SAR||Saudi Arabia Riyals||0.266668||3.74998|
|ZAR||South Africa Rand||0.0883340||11.3207|
|KRW||South Korea Won||0.000759354||1,316.91|
|ESP||Spain Pesetas **||0.00523174||191.141|
|XDR||IMF Special Drawing Rights||1.24862||0.800882|
|TWD||Taiwan New Dollars||0.0286531||34.9002|
|TTD||Trinidad and Tobago Dollars||0.163399||6.12000|
|Panama : Geographic coordinates||9 00 N, 80 00 W|
|Panama : Population growth rate||1.3%|
|Panama : Birth rate||19.06 births/1,000 population|
|Panama : Death rate||4.95 deaths/1,000 population|
|Panama : People living with HIV/AIDS||24,000|
|Panama : Independence||3 November 1903|
|Panama : National holiday||Independence Day, 3 November|
|Panama : Constitution||11 October 1972|
|Panama : GDP||purchasing power parity - $16.6 billion|
|Panama : GDP - per capita||purchasing power parity - $6,000|
|Panama : Electricity - consumption||4.049 billion kWh|
|Panama : Exports||$5.7 billion bananas, shrimp, sugar, coffee, clothing|
|Panama : Imports||$6.9 billion capital goods, crude oil, foodstuffs, consumer goods, chemicals|
|Panama : Telephones||396,000|
|Panama : Mobile cellular||17,000|
|Panama : Radio broadcast stations||AM 101, FM 134, shortwave 0|
|Panama : Radios||815,000|
|Panama : Television broadcast stations||38|
|Panama : Televisions||510,000|
|Panama : Internet country code||.pa|
|Panama : Internet Service Providers (ISPs)||6|
|Panama : Internet users||45,000|
|Panama : Railways||355 km|
|Panama : Highways||11,592 km|
|Panama : Waterways||882 km|
|Panama : Pipelines||crude oil 130 km|
|Panama : Ports and harbors||Balboa, Cristobal, Coco Solo, Manzanillo (part of Colon area), Vacamonte|
|Panama : Merchant marine||4,711 ships|
|Panama : Airports||107|
|Panama : Heliports||N/A|
|Panama : Military branches||Panamanian National Police, National Maritime Service, and National Air Service|
|Panama : Military expenditures||$128 million|