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Geography—note: a land of paddies and forests dominated by the Mekong River and Tonle Sap

total: 181,040 sq km
land: 176,520 sq km
water: 4,520 sq km

Area—comparative: slightly smaller than Oklahoma

Coastline: 443 km

Climate: tropical; rainy, monsoon season (May to November); dry season (December to April); little seasonal temperature variation

Terrain: mostly low, flat plains; mountains in southwest and north

Natural resources: timber, gemstones, some iron ore, manganese, phosphates, hydropower potential

Environment—current issues: logging activities throughout the country and strip mining for gems in the western region along the border with Thailand are resulting in habitat loss and declining biodiversity (in particular, destruction of mangrove swamps threatens natural fisheries); deforestation; soil erosion; in rural areas, a majority of the population does not have access to potable water

Population: 11,339,562 (July 1998 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 45% (male 2,611,684; female 2,533,313)
15-64 years: 52% (male 2,729,598; female 3,119,579)
65 years and over: 3% (male 142,836; female 202,552) (July 1998 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.51% (1998 est.)

Birth rate: 41.63 births/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Death rate: 16.49 deaths/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 106.76 deaths/1,000 live births (1998 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 47.99 years
male: 46.64 years
female: 49.41 years (1998 est.)

Total fertility rate: 5.81 children born/woman (1998 est.)

Ethnic groups: Khmer 90%, Vietnamese 5%, Chinese 1%, other 4%

Religions: Theravada Buddhism 95%, other 5%

Languages: Khmer (official), French

definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 35%
male: 48%
female: 22% (1990 est.) 

National capital: Phnom Penh

Independence: 9 November 1949 (from France)

National holiday: Independence Day, 9 November 1949

Constitution: promulgated 21 September 1993

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Political parties and leaders: National United Front for an Independent, Neutral, Peaceful, and Cooperative Cambodia (FUNCINPEC), Prince NORODOM RANARIDDH; Cambodian Pracheachon Party or Cambodian People's Party (CPP), CHEA SIM; Buddhist Liberal Democratic Party (BLDP), SON SANN; Buddhist Liberal Party (BLP), IENG MOULY; National Solidarity Party (also known as Democratic Kampuchea, also known as the Khmer Rouge), KHIEU SAMPHAN; Movement Pour La Liberation Nationale Khmere (MOLINAKA), PROM NEAKAREACH; Khmer Nation Party (KNP), SAM RANGSI

Economy—overview: After four years of solid macroeconomic performance, Cambodia's economy slowed dramatically in 1997 due to the twin shocks of the regional economic crisis and the July violence and political infighting. Economic growth fell from 6.5% in 1996 to 1.5% in 1997, foreign investment slowed, and tourism declined 16% from 1996 levels. Despite these difficulties, inflation accelerated only slightly to 9.5%; the government managed to keep the national budget in balance even with increased expenditures on the military and police; and the economy ran a small balance of payments surplus. The future payments could be adversely affected by the currency crises in Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia, which tends to make Cambodia's exports more expensive at the same time imports from these countries become cheaper. The long-term development of the economy after decades of war remains a daunting challenge. Human resource levels in the population are low, particularly in the poverty-ridden countryside. The almost total lack of basic infrastructure in the countryside will continue to hinder development. Recurring political instability hinders foreign investment. Corruption and inexperience among Cambodia's government officials will serve as a further drag on the economy.

GDP—real growth rate: 1.5% (1997 est.)

GDP—composition by sector:
agriculture: 47.3%
industry: 15.4%
services: 37.3% (1996 est.)

Agriculture—products: rice, rubber, corn, vegetables

total value: $615 million (1996 est.)
commodities: timber, garments, rubber, soybeans, sesame
partners: Singapore, Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, US

total value: $1 billion (1996 est.)
commodities: cigarettes, construction materials, petroleum products, machinery, motor vehicles
partners: Singapore, Vietnam, Japan, Australia, Hong Kong, Indonesia

Debt—external: $2.2 billion (1996 est.)

Currency: 1 new riel (CR) = 100 sen 

Military manpower—availability:
males age 15-49: 2,477,842 (1998 est.)

Military manpower—fit for military service:
males: 1,381,787 (1998 est.)

Military expenditures—dollar figure: $160 million (1996)

Military expenditures—percent of GDP: NA%

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