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Geography



Location: Southern Asia, bordering the Arabian Sea, between India on the east and Iran and Afghanistan on the west and China in the north

Geographic coordinates: 30 00 N, 70 00 E

Map references: Asia

Area:
total: 803,940 sq km
land: 778,720 sq km
water: 25,220 sq km

Area—comparative: slightly less than twice the size of California

Land boundaries:
total: 6,774 km
border countries: Afghanistan 2,430 km, China 523 km, India 2,912 km, Iran 909 km

Coastline: 1,046 km

Maritime claims:
contiguous zone: 24 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: mostly hot, dry desert; temperate in northwest; arctic in north

Terrain: flat Indus plain in east; mountains in north and northwest; Balochistan plateau in west

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
highest point: K2 (Mt. Godwin-Austen) 8,611 m

Natural resources: land, extensive natural gas reserves, limited petroleum, poor quality coal, iron ore, copper, salt, limestone

Land use:
arable land: 27%
permanent crops: 1%
permanent pastures: 6%
forests and woodland: 5%
other: 61% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 171,100 sq km (1993 est.)

Natural hazards: frequent earthquakes, occasionally severe especially in north and west; flooding along the Indus after heavy rains (July and August)

Environment—current issues: water pollution from raw sewage, industrial wastes, and agricultural runoff; limited natural fresh water resources; a majority of the population does not have access to potable water; deforestation; soil erosion; desertification

Environment—international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Marine Life Conservation

Geography—note: controls Khyber Pass and Bolan Pass, traditional invasion routes between Central Asia and the Indian Subcontinent

 
People

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Population: 135,135,195 (July 1998 est.)
note: population figures based on 1981 national census results—1998 census results are pending

Age structure:
0-14 years: 42% (male 29,083,284; female 27,425,172)
15-64 years: 54% (male 37,432,059; female 35,731,170)
65 years and over: 4% (male 2,716,739; female 2,746,771) (July 1998 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.2% (1998 est.)

Birth rate: 34.38 births/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Death rate: 10.69 deaths/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Net migration rate: -1.71 migrant(s)/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.99 male(s)/female (1998 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 93.48 deaths/1,000 live births (1998 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 59.07 years
male: 58.23 years
female: 59.96 years (1998 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.91 children born/woman (1998 est.)

Nationality:
noun: Pakistani(s)
adjective: Pakistani

Ethnic groups: Punjabi, Sindhi, Pashtun (Pathan), Baloch, Muhajir (immigrants from India and their descendants)

Religions: Muslim 97% (Sunni 77%, Shi'a 20%), Christian, Hindu, and other 3%

Languages: Punjabi 48%, Sindhi 12%, Siraiki (a Punjabi variant) 10%, Pashtu 8%, Urdu (official) 8%, Balochi 3%, Hindko 2%, Brahui 1%, English (official and lingua franca of Pakistani elite and most government ministries), Burushaski, and other 8%

Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 37.8%
male: 50%
female: 24.4% (1995 est.)

 
Government

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Country name:
conventional long form: Islamic Republic of Pakistan
conventional short form: Pakistan
former: West Pakistan

Data code: PK

Government type: federal republic

National capital: Islamabad

Administrative divisions: 4 provinces, 1 territory*, and 1 capital territory**; Balochistan, Federally Administered Tribal Areas*, Islamabad Capital Territory**, North-West Frontier, Punjab, Sindh
note: the Pakistani-administered portion of the disputed Jammu and Kashmir region includes Azad Kashmir and the Northern Areas

Independence: 14 August 1947 (from UK)

National holiday: Pakistan Day, 23 March (1956) (proclamation of the republic)

Constitution: 10 April 1973, suspended 5 July 1977, restored with amendments 30 December 1985

Legal system: based on English common law with provisions to accommodate Pakistan's status as an Islamic state; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations

Suffrage: 21 years of age; universal; separate electorates and reserved parliamentary seats for non-Muslims and tribal areas

Executive branch:
chief of state: President Mohammad Rafiq TARAR (since 31 December 1997)
head of government: Prime Minister Mohammad Nawaz SHARIF (since 17 February 1997)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the prime minister
elections: president elected by Parliament for a five-year term; election last held 31 December 1997 (next to be held no later than 1 January 2002); following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or leader of a majority coalition is usually elected prime minister by the National Assembly; election last held 3 February 1997 (next to be held NA February 2002)
election results: Mohammad Rafiq TARAR elected president; percent of Parliament and provincial vote—NA; Mohammad Nawaz SHARIF elected prime minister; percent of National Assembly vote—NA

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament or Majlis-e-Shoora consists of the Senate (87 seats; members indirectly elected by provincial assemblies to serve six-year terms; one-third of the members up for election every two years) and the National Assembly (217 seats; 207 represent Muslims and 10 represent non-Muslims; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections: Senate—last held 12 March 1997 (next to be held NA March 1999); National Assembly—last held 3 February 1997 (next to be held NA February 2002)
election results: Senate—percent of vote by party—NA; seats by party—PML/N 30, PPP 17, ANP 7, MQM/A 6, JWP 5, BNP 4, JUI/F 2, PML/J 2, BNM/M 1, PKMAP 1, TJP 1, independents 6, vacant 5; National Assembly—percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party—PML/N 137, PPP 18, MQM/A 12, ANP 10, BNP 3, JWP 2, JUI/F 2, PPP/SB 1, NPP 1, independents 21, minorities 10

Judicial branch: Supreme Court, judicial chiefs are appointed by the president; Federal Islamic (Shari'at) Court

Political parties and leaders:
government: Pakistan Muslim League, Nawaz Sharif faction (PML/N), Nawaz SHARIF; Balochistan National Movement/Mengal Group (BNM/M), Sardar Akhtar MENGAL; Mutahida Qaumi Movement, Altaf faction (MQM/A), Altaf HUSSAIN; Jamiat-al-Hadith (JAH); Jamhoori Watan Party (JWP), Akbar Khan BUGTI; Pakistan People's Party/Shaheed Bhutto (PPP/SB), Ghinva BHUTTO; Baluch National Party (BNP), leader NA
opposition: Pakistan People's Party (PPP), Benazir BHUTTO; Pakistan Muslim League, Junejo faction (PML/J), Hamid Nasir CHATTHA; National People's Party (NPP), Ghulam Mustapha JATOI; Pakhtun Khwa Milli Awami Party (PKMAP), Mahmood Khan ACHAKZAI; Balochistan National Movement/Hayee Group (BNM/H), Dr. HAYEE Baluch; Pakhtun Quami Party (PKQP), Mohammed AFZAL Khan; Awami National Party (ANP), Wali KHAN
frequently shifting: Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan, Niazi faction (JUP/NI); Pakistan Muslim League, Functional Group (PML/F), Pir PAGARO; Pakistan National Party (PNP); Milli Yakjheti Council (MYC) is an umbrella organization which includes Jamaat-i-Islami (JI), Qazi Hussain AHMED, Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam, Sami-ul-Haq faction (JUI/S), Tehrik-I-Jafria Pakistan (TJP), Allama Sajid NAQVI, and Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan, Noorani faction (JUP/NO)
note: political alliances in Pakistan can shift frequently; subsequent to the election Jamiat Ulema-i-Islami, Fazlur Rehman group (JUI/F) was disbanded

Political pressure groups and leaders: military remains important political force; ulema (clergy), landowners, industrialists, and small merchants also influential

International organization participation: AsDB, C, CCC, CP, ECO, ESCAP, FAO, G-19, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MINURSO, NAM, OAS (observer), OIC, PCA, SAARC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIKOM, UNITAR, UNMIBH, UNMOP, UNOMIG, UNOMIL, UNPREDEP, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Riaz KHOKAR
chancery: 2315 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 939-6200
FAX: [1] (202) 387-0484
consulate(s) general: Los Angeles and New York

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Thomas W. SIMONS, Jr.
embassy: Diplomatic Enclave, Ramna 5, Islamabad
mailing address: P. O. Box 1048, Unit 62200, APO AE 09812-2200
telephone: [92] (51) 826161 through 826179
FAX: [92] (51) 214222
consulate(s) general: Karachi, Lahore
consulate(s): Peshawar

Flag description: green with a vertical white band (symbolizing the role of religious minorities) on the hoist side; a large white crescent and star are centered in the green field; the crescent, star, and color green are traditional symbols of Islam

 
Economy

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Economy—overview: Pakistan continues to suffer through a damaging foreign exchange crisis. The crisis stems from years of loose fiscal policies that exacerbated inflation and allowed the public debt, money supply, and current account deficit to explode. In April 1997, Prime Minister SHARIF introduced a stimulus package of tax cuts intended to boost failing industrial output and spur export growth. At that time, the IMF endorsed the program, paving the way for a $1.5 billion Enhanced Structural Adjustment Facility. Although the economy showed signs of improvement following the measures, SHARIF has refused to implement the tough structural reforms necessary for sustained, longer-term growth. As a consequence, at yearend 1997, industrial production continued to flag, foreign exchange reserves continued to teeter around $1 billion—only four weeks of imports—and borrowing to support the budget deficit already exceeded the amount allocated for the entire fiscal year. At the same time, the government must cope with long-standing economic vulnerabilities—inadequate infrastructure, low levels of literacy, and increasing sectarian, ethnic, and tribal violence.

GDP: purchasing power parity—$344 billion (1997 est.)

GDP—real growth rate: 3.1% (1997 est.)

GDP—per capita: purchasing power parity—$2,600 (1997 est.)

GDP—composition by sector:
agriculture: 24.2%
industry: 26.4%
services: 49.4% (1997)

Inflation rate—consumer price index: 11.8% (FY96/97)

Labor force:
total: 37.8 million (1998)
by occupation: agriculture 47%, mining and manufacturing 17%, services 17%, other 19%
note: extensive export of labor, mostly to the Middle East, and use of child labor

Unemployment rate: NA%

Budget:
revenues: $9.6 billion
expenditures: $13.6 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (FY96/97)

Industries: textiles, food processing, beverages, construction materials, clothing, paper products, shrimp

Industrial production growth rate: 3.3% (FY96/97 est.)

Electricity—capacity: 13.169 million kW (1995)

Electricity—production: 58.1 billion kWh (1997)

Electricity—consumption per capita: 436 kWh (1997)

Agriculture—products: cotton, wheat, rice, sugarcane, fruits, vegetables; milk, beef, mutton, eggs

Exports:
total value: $8.2 billion (FY96/97)
commodities: cotton, textiles, clothing, rice, leather, carpets
partners: EU, US, Hong Kong, Japan

Imports:
total value: $11.4 billion (FY96/97)
commodities: petroleum, petroleum products, machinery, transportation equipment, vegetable oils, animal fats, chemicals
partners: EU, Japan, US, China

Debt—external: $33 billion (1997 est.)

Economic aid:
recipient: $2.2 billion from all bilateral and multilateral sources (FY96/97)

Currency: 1 Pakistani rupee (PRe) = 100 paisa

Exchange rates: Pakistani rupees (PRs) per US$1—44.050 (January 1998), 41.112 (1997), 36.079 (1996), 31.643 (1995), 30.567 (1994), 28.1 (1993); note—annual average of official rate; parallel market rate is higher

Fiscal year: 1 July—30 June

 
Communications

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Telephones: 2.552 million (1997)

Telephone system: the domestic system is mediocre, but adequate for government and business use, in part because major businesses have established their own private systems; since 1988, the government has promoted investment in the national telecommunications system on a priority basis; despite major improvements in trunk and urban systems, telecommunication services are still not readily available to the major portion of the population
domestic: microwave radio relay
international: satellite earth stations—3 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 2 Indian Ocean); microwave radio relay to neighboring countries

Radio broadcast stations: AM 26, FM 8, shortwave 11

Radios: 11.3 million (1992 est.)

Television broadcast stations: 29

Televisions: 2.08 million (1993 est.)

 
Transportation

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Railways:
total: 8,163 km
broad gauge: 7,718 km 1.676-m gauge (293 km electrified; 1,037 km double track)
narrow gauge: 445 km 1.000-m gauge (1996 est.)

Highways:
total: 224,774 km
paved: 128,121 km
unpaved: 96,653 km (1996 est.)

Pipelines: crude oil 250 km; petroleum products 885 km; natural gas 4,044 km (1987)

Ports and harbors: Karachi, Port Muhammad bin Qasim

Merchant marine:
total: 24 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 416,875 GRT/684,580 DWT
ships by type: bulk 5, cargo 15, container 3, oil tanker 1 (1997 est.)

Airports: 115 (1997 est.)

Airports—with paved runways:
total: 80
over 3,047 m: 11
2,438 to 3,047 m: 20
1,524 to 2,437 m: 31
914 to 1,523 m: 15
under 914 m: 3 (1997 est.)

Airports—with unpaved runways:
total: 35
over 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 8
914 to 1,523 m: 8
under 914 m: 18 (1997 est.)

Heliports: 6 (1997 est.)

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