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Guatemala vs. El Salvador

Introduction

GuatemalaEl Salvador
BackgroundThe Maya civilization flourished in Guatemala and surrounding regions during the first millennium A.D. After almost three centuries as a Spanish colony, Guatemala won its independence in 1821. During the second half of the 20th century, it experienced a variety of military and civilian governments, as well as a 36-year guerrilla war. In 1996, the government signed a peace agreement formally ending the internal conflict, which had left more than 200,000 people dead and had created, by some estimates, about 1 million refugees.
El Salvador achieved independence from Spain in 1821 and from the Central American Federation in 1839. A 12-year civil war, which cost about 75,000 lives, was brought to a close in 1992 when the government and leftist rebels signed a treaty that provided for military and political reforms. El Salvador is beset by one of the world’s highest homicide rates and pervasive criminal gangs.

Geography

GuatemalaEl Salvador
LocationCentral America, bordering the North Pacific Ocean, between El Salvador and Mexico, and bordering the Gulf of Honduras (Caribbean Sea) between Honduras and Belize
Central America, bordering the North Pacific Ocean, between Guatemala and Honduras
Geographic coordinates15 30 N, 90 15 W
13 50 N, 88 55 W
Map referencesCentral America and the Caribbean
Central America and the Caribbean
Areatotal: 108,889 sq km
land: 107,159 sq km
water: 1,730 sq km
total: 21,041 sq km
land: 20,721 sq km
water: 320 sq km
Area - comparativeslightly smaller than Pennsylvania
about the same size as New Jersey
Land boundariestotal: 1,667 km
border countries (4): Belize 266 km, El Salvador 199 km, Honduras 244 km, Mexico 958 km
total: 590 km
border countries (2): Guatemala 199 km, Honduras 391 km
Coastline400 km
307 km
Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climatetropical; hot, humid in lowlands; cooler in highlands
tropical; rainy season (May to October); dry season (November to April); tropical on coast; temperate in uplands
Terrainmostly mountains with narrow coastal plains and rolling limestone plateau
mostly mountains with narrow coastal belt and central plateau
Elevation extremesmean elevation: 759 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
highest point: Volcan Tajumulco 4,211 m (highest point in Central America)
mean elevation: 442 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
highest point: Cerro El Pital 2,730 m
Natural resourcespetroleum, nickel, rare woods, fish, chicle, hydropower
hydropower, geothermal power, petroleum, arable land
Land useagricultural land: 41.2%
arable land 14.2%; permanent crops 8.8%; permanent pasture 18.2%
forest: 33.6%
other: 25.2% (2011 est.)
agricultural land: 74.7%
arable land 33.1%; permanent crops 10.9%; permanent pasture 30.7%
forest: 13.6%
other: 11.7% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land3,375 sq km (2012)
452 sq km (2012)
Natural hazardsnumerous volcanoes in mountains, with occasional violent earthquakes; Caribbean coast extremely susceptible to hurricanes and other tropical storms
volcanism: significant volcanic activity in the Sierra Madre range; Santa Maria (elev. 3,772 m) has been deemed a Decade Volcano by the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior, worthy of study due to its explosive history and close proximity to human populations; Pacaya (elev. 2,552 m), which erupted in May 2010 causing an ashfall on Guatemala City and prompting evacuations, is one of the country's most active volcanoes with frequent eruptions since 1965; other historically active volcanoes include Acatenango, Almolonga, Atitlan, Fuego, and Tacana
known as the Land of Volcanoes; frequent and sometimes destructive earthquakes and volcanic activity; extremely susceptible to hurricanes
volcanism: significant volcanic activity; San Salvador (elev. 1,893 m), which last erupted in 1917, has the potential to cause major harm to the country's capital, which lies just below the volcano's slopes; San Miguel (elev. 2,130 m), which last erupted in 2002, is one of the most active volcanoes in the country; other historically active volcanoes include Conchaguita, Ilopango, Izalco, and Santa Ana
Environment - current issuesdeforestation in the Peten rainforest; soil erosion; water pollution
deforestation; soil erosion; water pollution; contamination of soils from disposal of toxic wastes
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea
Geography - noteno natural harbors on west coast
smallest Central American country and only one without a coastline on Caribbean Sea
Population distributionthe vast majority of the populace resides in the southern half of the country, particularly in the mountainous regions; more than half of the population lives in rural areas
athough it is the smallest country in land area in Central America, El Salvador has a population that is 18 times larger than Belize; at least 20% of the population lives abroad; high population density country-wide, with particular concentration around the capital of San Salvador

Demographics

GuatemalaEl Salvador
Population15,189,958 (July 2016 est.)
6,156,670 (July 2016 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 35.02% (male 2,711,683/female 2,608,295)
15-24 years: 21.8% (male 1,663,484/female 1,647,749)
25-54 years: 33.53% (male 2,425,931/female 2,666,790)
55-64 years: 5.23% (male 377,642/female 416,939)
65 years and over: 4.42% (male 311,165/female 360,280) (2016 est.)
0-14 years: 26.58% (male 839,392/female 797,323)
15-24 years: 20.51% (male 635,100/female 627,648)
25-54 years: 38.66% (male 1,098,619/female 1,281,822)
55-64 years: 6.96% (male 190,386/female 238,206)
65 years and over: 7.28% (male 197,945/female 250,229) (2016 est.)
Median agetotal: 21.7 years
male: 21 years
female: 22.4 years (2016 est.)
total: 26.6 years
male: 25.1 years
female: 28.1 years (2016 est.)
Population growth rate1.79% (2016 est.)
0.25% (2016 est.)
Birth rate24.5 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)
16.3 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Death rate4.7 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)
5.7 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Net migration rate-1.9 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2016 est.)
-8.1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.91 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.91 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.87 male(s)/female
total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.86 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.8 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.8 male(s)/female
total population: 0.93 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 22 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 23.9 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 19.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2016 est.)
total: 17.3 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 19.4 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 15.1 deaths/1,000 live births (2016 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 72.3 years
male: 70.3 years
female: 74.4 years (2016 est.)
total population: 74.7 years
male: 71.4 years
female: 78.1 years (2016 est.)
Total fertility rate2.83 children born/woman (2016 est.)
1.89 children born/woman (2016 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate0.57% (2015 est.)
0.51% (2015 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Guatemalan(s)
adjective: Guatemalan
noun: Salvadoran(s)
adjective: Salvadoran
Ethnic groupsMestizo (mixed Amerindian-Spanish - in local Spanish called Ladino) and European 59.4%, K'iche 9.1%, Kaqchikel 8.4%, Mam 7.9%, Q'eqchi 6.3%, other Mayan 8.6%, indigenous non-Mayan 0.2%, other 0.1% (2001 census)
mestizo 86.3%, white 12.7%, Amerindian 0.2% (includes Lenca, Kakawira, Nahua-Pipil), black 0.1%, other 0.6% (2007 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS54,600 (2015 est.)
19,800 (2015 est.)
ReligionsRoman Catholic, Protestant, indigenous Mayan beliefs
Roman Catholic 50%, Protestant 36%, other 2%, none 12% (2014 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths1,700 (2015 est.)
400 (2015 est.)
LanguagesSpanish (official) 60%, Amerindian languages 40%
note: there are 23 officially recognized Amerindian languages, including Quiche, Cakchiquel, Kekchi, Mam, Garifuna, and Xinca
Spanish (official), Nawat (among some Amerindians)
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 81.5%
male: 87.4%
female: 76.3% (2015 est.)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 88%
male: 90.4%
female: 86% (2015 est.)
Major infectious diseasesdegree of risk: high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne disease: dengue fever and malaria
note: active local transmission of Zika virus by Aedes species mosquitoes has been identified in this country (as of August 2016); it poses an important risk (a large number of cases possible) among US citizens if bitten by an infective mosquito; other less common ways to get Zika are through sex, via blood transfusion, or during pregnancy, in which the pregnant woman passes Zika virus to her fetus (2016)
degree of risk: high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea
vectorborne diseases: dengue fever
note: active local transmission of Zika virus by Aedes species mosquitoes has been identified in this country (as of August 2016); it poses an important risk (a large number of cases possible) among US citizens if bitten by an infective mosquito; other less common ways to get Zika are through sex, via blood transfusion, or during pregnancy, in which the pregnant woman passes Zika virus to her fetus (2016)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 11 years
male: 11 years
female: 10 years (2013)
total: 13 years
male: 13 years
female: 13 years (2014)
Education expenditures3% of GDP (2015)
3.4% of GDP (2014)
Urbanizationurban population: 51.6% of total population (2015)
rate of urbanization: 3.4% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
urban population: 66.7% of total population (2015)
rate of urbanization: 1.4% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Drinking water sourceimproved:
urban: 98.4% of population
rural: 86.8% of population
total: 92.8% of population
unimproved:
urban: 1.6% of population
rural: 13.2% of population
total: 7.2% of population (2015 est.)
improved:
urban: 97.5% of population
rural: 86.5% of population
total: 93.8% of population
unimproved:
urban: 2.5% of population
rural: 13.5% of population
total: 6.2% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved:
urban: 77.5% of population
rural: 49.3% of population
total: 63.9% of population
unimproved:
urban: 22.5% of population
rural: 50.7% of population
total: 36.1% of population (2015 est.)
improved:
urban: 82.4% of population
rural: 60% of population
total: 75% of population
unimproved:
urban: 17.6% of population
rural: 40% of population
total: 25% of population (2015 est.)
Major cities - populationGUATEMALA CITY (capital) 2.918 million (2015)
SAN SALVADOR (capital) 1.098 million (2015)
Maternal mortality rate88 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
54 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight12.6% (2015)
5% (2014)
Health expenditures6.2% of GDP (2014)
6.8% of GDP (2014)
Physicians density0.9 physicians/1,000 population (2009)
1.92 physicians/1,000 population (2008)
Hospital bed density0.6 beds/1,000 population (2011)
1.1 beds/1,000 population (2012)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate16.4% (2014)
20.1% (2014)
Child labor - children ages 5-14total number: 929,852
percentage: 21%
note: data represent children ages 5-17 (2006 est.)
total number: 179,303
percentage: 4%
note: data represent children ages 5-17 (2007 est.)
Mother's mean age at first birth20.3 years
note: median age at first birth among women 25-29 (2008/09 est.)
20.8 years
note: median age at first birth among women 25-29 (2008 est.)
Demographic profileGuatemala is a predominantly poor country that struggles in several areas of health and development, including infant, child, and maternal mortality, malnutrition, literacy, and contraceptive awareness and use. The country's large indigenous population is disproportionately affected. Guatemala is the most populous country in Central America and has the highest fertility rate in Latin America. It also has the highest population growth rate in Latin America, which is likely to continue because of its large reproductive-age population and high birth rate. Almost half of Guatemala's population is under age 19, making it the youngest population in Latin America. Guatemala's total fertility rate has slowly declined during the last few decades due in part to limited government-funded health programs. However, the birth rate is still more than three children per woman and is markedly higher among its rural and indigenous populations.
Guatemalans have a history of emigrating legally and illegally to Mexico, the United States, and Canada because of a lack of economic opportunity, political instability, and natural disasters. Emigration, primarily to the United States, escalated during the 1960 to 1996 civil war and accelerated after a peace agreement was signed. Thousands of Guatemalans who fled to Mexico returned after the war, but labor migration to southern Mexico continues.
El Salvador is the smallest and most densely populated country in Central America. It is well into its demographic transition, experiencing slower population growth, a decline in its number of youths, and the gradual aging of its population. The increased use of family planning has substantially lowered El Salvador's fertility rate, from approximately 6 children per woman in the 1970s to replacement level today. A 2008 national family planning survey showed that female sterilization remained the most common contraception method in El Salvador - its sterilization rate is among the highest in Latin America and the Caribbean - but that the use of injectable contraceptives is growing. Fertility differences between rich and poor and urban and rural women are narrowing.
Salvadorans fled during the 1979 to 1992 civil war mainly to the United States but also to Canada and to neighboring Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica. Emigration to the United States increased again in the 1990s and 2000s as a result of deteriorating economic conditions, natural disasters (Hurricane Mitch in 1998 and earthquakes in 2001), and family reunification. At least 20% of El Salvador's population lives abroad. The remittances they send home account for close to 20% of GDP, are the second largest source of external income after exports, and have helped reduce poverty.
Contraceptive prevalence rate60.6% (2014)
72% (2014)
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 70.9
youth dependency ratio: 62.6
elderly dependency ratio: 8.3
potential support ratio: 12.1 (2015 est.)
total dependency ratio: 54.3
youth dependency ratio: 41.7
elderly dependency ratio: 12.6
potential support ratio: 7.9 (2015 est.)

Government

GuatemalaEl Salvador
Country name"conventional long form: Republic of Guatemala
conventional short form: Guatemala
local long form: Republica de Guatemala
local short form: Guatemala
etymology: name derives from the Maya word meaning ""Land of Trees""
"
"conventional long form: Republic of El Salvador
conventional short form: El Salvador
local long form: Republica de El Salvador
local short form: El Salvador
etymology: name is an abbreviation of the original Spanish conquistador designation for the area ""Provincia de Nuestro Senor Jesus Cristo, el Salvador del Mundo"" (Province of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the World), which became simply ""El Salvador"" (The Savior)
"
Government typepresidential republic
presidential republic
Capitalname: Guatemala City
geographic coordinates: 14 37 N, 90 31 W
time difference: UTC-6 (1 hour behind Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
name: San Salvador
geographic coordinates: 13 42 N, 89 12 W
time difference: UTC-6 (1 hour behind Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions22 departments (departamentos, singular - departamento); Alta Verapaz, Baja Verapaz, Chimaltenango, Chiquimula, El Progreso, Escuintla, Guatemala, Huehuetenango, Izabal, Jalapa, Jutiapa, Peten, Quetzaltenango, Quiche, Retalhuleu, Sacatepequez, San Marcos, Santa Rosa, Solola, Suchitepequez, Totonicapan, Zacapa
14 departments (departamentos, singular - departamento); Ahuachapan, Cabanas, Chalatenango, Cuscatlan, La Libertad, La Paz, La Union, Morazan, San Miguel, San Salvador, San Vicente, Santa Ana, Sonsonate, Usulutan
Independence15 September 1821 (from Spain)
15 September 1821 (from Spain)
National holidayIndependence Day, 15 September (1821)
Independence Day, 15 September (1821)
Constitutionseveral previous; latest adopted 31 May 1985, effective 14 January 1986; suspended, reinstated, and amended in 1994 (2016)
many previous; latest drafted 16 December 1983, enacted 23 December 1983; amended many times, last in 2014 (2016)
Legal systemcivil law system; judicial review of legislative acts
civil law system with minor common law influence; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court
Suffrage18 years of age; universal; note - active duty members of the armed forces and police by law cannot vote and are restricted to their barracks on election day
18 years of age; universal
Executive branchchief of state: President Jimmy Ernesto MORALES Cabrera (since 14 January 2016); Vice President Jafeth CABRERA Franco (since 14 January 2016); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government
head of government: President Jimmy Ernesto MORALES Cabrera (since 14 January 2016); Vice President Jafeth CABRERA Franco (since 14 January 2016)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president
elections/appointments: president and vice president directly elected on the same ballot by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 4-year term (not eligible for consecutive terms); election last held in 2 rounds on 6 September and 25 October 2015 (next to be held in September 2019)
election results: Jimmy Ernesto MORALES Cabrera (FNC) elected president; percent of vote in first round - Jimmy Ernesto MORALES Cabrera (FNC) 23.8%, Sandra TORRES (UNE) 19.8%, Manuel BALDIZON (LIDER) 19.6%; percent of vote in second round - Jimmy Ernesto MORALES Cabrera (FNC) 67.4%, Sandra TORRES (UNE) 32.6%
chief of state: President Salvador SANCHEZ CEREN (since 1 June 2014); Vice President Salvador Oscar ORTIZ (since 1 June 2014); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government
head of government: President Salvador SANCHEZ CEREN (since 1 June 2014); Vice President Salvador Oscar ORTIZ (since 1 June 2014)
cabinet: Council of Ministers selected by the president
elections/appointments: president and vice president directly elected on the same ballot by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a single 5-year term; election last held on 2 February 2014, with a runoff on 9 March 2014 (next to be held in early 2019)
election results: Salvador SANCHEZ CEREN elected president; percent of vote: first-round results - Salvador SANCHEZ CEREN (FMLN) 48.9%, Norman QUIJANO (ARENA) 39%, Antonio SACA (CN) 11.4%, other 0.7%; second-round results - Salvador SANCHEZ CEREN 50.1%, Norman QUIJANO 49.9%
Legislative branchdescription: unicameral Congress of the Republic or Congreso de la Republica (158 seats; 127 members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies within each of the country's 22 departments by simple majority vote and 31 directly elected in a single nationwide constituency by proportional representation vote; members serve 4-year terms)
elections: last held on 6 September 2015 (next to be held in September 2019)
election results: percent of vote by party - LIDER 19.10%, UNE 14.83%, TODOS 9.74%, PP 9.43%, FCN 8.75%, EG 6.24%, PU 5.69%, UCN 5.43%, Winaq-URNG-MAIZ 4.32%, Convergence 3.84%, VIVA 3.66%, PAN 3.42%, FUERZA 2.07%, other 3.48%; seats by party - LIDER 44, UNE 36, TODOS 18, PP 17, FCN 11, EG 7, UCN 6, PU 5, Winaq-URNG-MAIZ 3, Convergence 3, VIVA 3, PAN 3, FUERZA 2; note - as of 6 January 2016, seats by party are as follows: FCN 37, UNE 32, MR 20, TODOS 17, AC 12, EG 7, UCN 6, CREO 5, LIDER 5, VIVA 4, Convergence 3, PAN 3, PP 2, FUERZA 1, PU 1, URNG 1, Winaq 1, independent 1
description: unicameral Legislative Assembly or Asamblea Legislativa (84 seats; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies and a single nationwide constituency by proportional representation vote to serve 3-year terms)
elections: last held on 1 March 2015 (next to be held in March 2018)
election results: percent of vote by party - ARENA 37.1%, FMLN 35.2%, GANA 9.4%, PCN 7.7%, PDC 2.3%, other 8.3%; seats by party - ARENA 35, FMLN 31, GANA 11, PCN 6, PDC 1
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Supreme Court of Justice or Corte Suprema de Justicia (consists of 13 magistrates including the court president and organized into 3 chambers); note - the court president also supervises trial judges countrywide; Constitutional Court or Corte de Constitucionalidad (consists of 5 judges and 5 alternates)
judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court magistrates elected by the Congress of the Republic from candidates proposed by the Postulation Committee, an independent body of deans of the country's university law schools, representatives of the country's law associations, and representatives of the Courts of Appeal; magistrates elected for concurrent, renewable 5-year terms; Constitutional Court judges - 1 elected by the Congress of the Republic, 1 by the Supreme Court, 1 by the president of the republic, 1 by the (public) University of San Carlos, and 1 by the lawyers bar association; judges elected for concurrent, renewable 5-year terms; the presidency of the court rotates among the magistrates for a single 1-year term
subordinate courts: numerous first instance and appellate courts
highest court(s): Supreme Court or Corte Suprema de Justicia (CSJ) (consists of 15 judges assigned to constitutional, civil, penal, and administrative conflict divisions)
judge selection and term of office: judges elected by the Legislative Assembly on the recommendation of both the National Council of the Judicature, an independent body elected by the Legislative Assembly and the Bar Association; judges elected for a 9-year term, with renewal of one-third of judges every 3 years; consecutive re-election is allowed
subordinate courts: Appellate Courts; Courts of First Instance; Courts of Peace
Political parties and leadersCitizen Alliance or AC
Commitment, Renewal, and Order or CREO [Richard LEE Abularach]
Convergence [Pablo MONSANTO]
Encounter for Guatemala or EG [Nineth MONTENEGRO Cottom]
Everyone Together for Guatemala or TODOS [Felipe ALEJOS]
FUERZA [Maurico REDFORD]
Grand National Alliance or GANA [Carlos Alberto MARTINEZ Castellanos]
Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity or Winaq-URNG [Angel SANCHEZ Viesca]
Heart New Nation or CNN [Mario Roberto CHU Catalan]
My Country or Mi Pais [Alfredo RABBE]
National Advancement Party or PAN [Juan GUTIERREZ Strauss]
National Unity for Hope or UNE [Sandra TORRES]
National Convergence Front or FCN [Edgar Justino OVALLE Maldonado]
National Welfare or BIEN [Fidel REYES Lee]
Nationalist Change Union or UCN [Mario ESTRADA]
Patriot Party or PP [Ingrid Roxana BALDETTI Elias]
Political Movement Winaq or WINAQ [Amilcar de Jesus POP Ac]
Productivity and Labor Party or PPT [Edgar Alfredo RODRIGUEZ]
Progressive Liberating Party or PLP [Ana BERNAT]
Reform Movement or MR [Jose Raul VIGIL Arias]
Renewed Democratic Liberty or LIDER [Manuel BALDIZON]
Unionista Party or PU [Alvaro ARZU Escobar]
UNITED [Mario Rolando TORRES Marroquin]
Victoria (Victory) [Manuel de Jesus RIVERA]
Vision with Values or VIVA [Cromwell CUESTAS Paz]
Christian Democratic Party or PDC [Rodolfo Antonio PARKER Soto]
Democratic Change (Cambio Democratico) or CD [Douglas AVILES] (formerly United Democratic Center or CDU)
Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front or FMLN [Medardo GONZALEZ]
Great Alliance for National Unity or GANA [Jose Andres ROVIRA Caneles]
National Conciliation Party or PCN [Manuel RODRIGUEZ]
Nationalist Republican Alliance or ARENA [Mauricio INTERIANO]
Political pressure groups and leadersAlliance Against Impunity or AI (includes among others Center for Legal Action on Human Rights (CALDH), Family and Friends of the Disappeared of Guatemala (FAMDEGUA))
Civic and Political Convergence of Women
Committee for Campesino Unity or CUC
Coordinating Committee of Agricultural, Commercial, Industrial, and Financial Associations or CACIF
Foundation for the Development of Guatemala or FUNDESA
Guatemala Visible
Mutual Support Group or GAM
Movimiento PRO-Justicia
National Union of Agriculture Workers or UNAGRO
labor organizations:
Electrical Industry Union of El Salvador or SIES
Federation of the Construction Industry, Similar Transport and other activities, or FESINCONTRANS
National Confederation of Salvadoran Workers or CNTS
National Trade Union Federation of Salvadoran Workers or FENASTRAS
National Union of Salvadoran Workers or UNTS
Port Industry Union of El Salvador or SIPES
Salvadoran Workers Central or CTS
Union of Judiciary Workers or SITTOJ
Union of Workers of the Ministry of Treasury or SITRAMI
Workers Union of Electrical Corporation or STCEL

business organizations:
American Chamber of Commerce in El Salvador
National Association of Private Enterprise or ANEP
Salvadoran Chamber of Commerce
Salvadoran Chamber of the Construction Industry or CASALCO
Salvadoran Industrial Association or ASI
International organization participationBCIE, CACM, CD, CELAC, EITI (compliant country), FAO, G-24, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt (signatory), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAES, LAIA (observer), MIGA, MINUSTAH, MONUSCO, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, Pacific Alliance (observer), PCA, Petrocaribe, SICA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNIFIL, Union Latina, UNISFA, UNITAR, UNMISS, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
BCIE, CACM, CD, CELAC, FAO, G-11, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAES, LAIA (observer), MIGA, MINURSO, MINUSTAH, NAM (observer), OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, Pacific Alliance (observer), PCA, Petrocaribe, SICA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNIFIL, Union Latina, UNISFA, UNMISS, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador Gladys Marithza RUIZ SANCHEZ de Vielman (since 27 June 2016)
chancery: 2220 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 745-4952
FAX: [1] (202) 745-1908
consulate(s): Del Rio (TX), San Bernadino (CA), Silver Spring (MD), Tucson (AZ)
consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, Houston, Lake Worth (FL), Los Angeles, McAllen (TX), Miami, New York, Phoenix, Providence (RI), San Francisco, Silver Spring (MD), Tucson (AZ)
chief of mission: Ambassador Claudia Ivette CANJURA de Centeno (since 17 June 2016)
chancery: 1400 16th Street NW, Suite 100, Washington, DC 20036
telephone: [1] (202) 595-7517
FAX: [1] (202) 232-1928
consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Boston, Brentwood (NY), Chicago, Coral Gables (FL), Dallas, Houston, Las Vegas (NV), Los Angeles, McAllen (TX), New York, Nogales (AZ), San Francisco, Seattle, Tucson (AZ), Washington, DC, Woodbridge (VA), Woodstock (GA)
consulate(s): Elizabeth (NJ), Newark (NJ)
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador Todd D. ROBINSON (since 10 October 2014)
embassy: 7-01 Avenida Reforma, Zone 10, Guatemala City
mailing address: DPO AA 34024
telephone: [502] 2326-4000
FAX: [502] 2326-4654
chief of mission: Ambassador Jean MANES (since January 2016)
embassy: Final Boulevard Santa Elena Sur, Antiguo Cuscatlan, La Libertad, San Salvador
mailing address: Unit 3450, APO AA 34023; 3450 San Salvador Place, Washington, DC 20521-3450
telephone: [503] 2501-2999
FAX: [503] 2501-2150
Flag descriptionthree equal vertical bands of light blue (hoist side), white, and light blue, with the coat of arms centered in the white band; the coat of arms includes a green and red quetzal (the national bird) representing liberty and a scroll bearing the inscription LIBERTAD 15 DE SEPTIEMBRE DE 1821 (the original date of independence from Spain) all superimposed on a pair of crossed rifles signifying Guatemala's willingness to defend itself and a pair of crossed swords representing honor and framed by a laurel wreath symbolizing victory; the blue bands represent the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea; the white band denotes peace and purity
note: one of only two national flags featuring a firearm, the other is Mozambique
three equal horizontal bands of cobalt blue (top), white, and cobalt blue with the national coat of arms centered in the white band; the coat of arms features a round emblem encircled by the words REPUBLICA DE EL SALVADOR EN LA AMERICA CENTRAL; the banner is based on the former blue-white-blue flag of the Federal Republic of Central America; the blue bands symbolize the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, while the white band represents the land between the two bodies of water, as well as peace and prosperity
note: similar to the flag of Nicaragua, which has a different coat of arms centered in the white band; also similar to the flag of Honduras, which has five blue stars arranged in an X pattern centered in the white band
National anthem"name: ""Himno Nacional de Guatemala"" (National Anthem of Guatemala)
lyrics/music: Jose Joaquin PALMA/Rafael Alvarez OVALLE
note: adopted 1897, modified lyrics adopted 1934; Cuban poet Jose Joaquin PALMA anonymously submitted lyrics to a public contest calling for a national anthem; his authorship was not discovered until 1911
"
"name: ""Himno Nacional de El Salvador"" (National Anthem of El Salvador)
lyrics/music: Juan Jose CANAS/Juan ABERLE
note: officially adopted 1953, in use since 1879; at 4:20 minutes the anthem of El Salvador is one of the world's longest
"
International law organization participationhas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
National symbol(s)quetzal (bird); national colors: blue, white
turquoise-browed motmot (bird); national colors: blue, white
Citizenshipcitizenship by birth: yes
citizenship by descent: yes
dual citizenship recognized: yes
residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years with no absences of six consecutive months or longer or absences totaling more than a year
citizenship by birth: yes
citizenship by descent: yes
dual citizenship recognized: yes
residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years

Economy

GuatemalaEl Salvador
Economy - overviewGuatemala is the most populous country in Central America with a GDP per capita roughly half the average for Latin America and the Caribbean. The agricultural sector accounts for 13.5% of GDP and 31% of the labor force; key agricultural exports include sugar, coffee, bananas, and vegetables. Guatemala is the top remittance recipient in Central America as a result of Guatemala's large expatriate community in the US. These inflows are a primary source of foreign income, equivalent to over one-half of the country's exports and one-tenth of its GDP.

The 1996 peace accords, which ended 36 years of civil war, removed a major obstacle to foreign investment, and since then Guatemala has pursued important reforms and macroeconomic stabilization. The Dominican Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) entered into force in July 2006, spurring increased investment and diversification of exports, with the largest increases in ethanol and non-traditional agricultural exports. While CAFTA-DR has helped improve the investment climate, concerns over security, the lack of skilled workers, and poor infrastructure continue to hamper foreign direct investment.

The distribution of income remains highly unequal with the richest 20% of the population accounting for more than 51% of Guatemala's overall consumption. More than half of the population is below the national poverty line, and 23% of the population lives in extreme poverty. Poverty among indigenous groups, which make up more than 40% of the population, averages 79%, with 40% of the indigenous population living in extreme poverty. Nearly one-half of Guatemala's children under age five are chronically malnourished, one of the highest malnutrition rates in the world.

Guatemala is facing growing fiscal pressures, exacerbated by multiple corruption scandals that led to the resignation of the president, vice president, and numerous high-level economic officials in 2015.
The smallest country in Central America geographically, El Salvador has the fourth largest economy in the region. With the global recession, real GDP contracted in 2009 and economic growth has since remained low, averaging less than 2% from 2010 to 2014, but recovered somewhat in 2015-16 with an average annual growth rate of 2.4%. Remittances accounted for approximately 17.1% of GDP in 2016 and were received by about a third of all households.

In 2006, El Salvador was the first country to ratify the Dominican Republic-Central American Free Trade Agreement, which has bolstered the export of processed foods, sugar, and ethanol, and supported investment in the apparel sector amid increased Asian competition. In September 2015, El Salvador kicked off a five-year $277 million second compact with the Millennium Challenge Corporation - a US Government agency aimed at stimulating economic growth and reducing poverty - to improve El Salvador's competitiveness and productivity in international markets..

The Salvadoran Government maintained fiscal discipline during post-war reconstruction and rebuilding following earthquakes in 2001 and hurricanes in 1998 and 2005, but El Salvador's public debt, estimated at 61.1% of GDP in 2016, has been growing over the last several years. Total external debt was nearly 60% of GDP in 2016.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$131.8 billion (2016 est.)
$127.9 billion (2015 est.)
$122.8 billion (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
$54.79 billion (2016 est.)
$53.5 billion (2015 est.)
$52.22 billion (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
GDP - real growth rate3.1% (2016 est.)
4.1% (2015 est.)
4.2% (2014 est.)
2.4% (2016 est.)
2.5% (2015 est.)
1.4% (2014 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$7,900 (2016 est.)
$7,900 (2015 est.)
$7,700 (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
$8,900 (2016 est.)
$8,700 (2015 est.)
$8,600 (2014 est.)
note: data are in 2016 dollars
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 13.2%
industry: 23.5%
services: 63.3% (2016 est.)
agriculture: 10.6%
industry: 25.3%
services: 64.1% (2016 est.)
Population below poverty line59.3% (2014 est.)
34.9% (2015 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 1.6%
highest 10%: 38.4% (2014)
lowest 10%: 2.2%
highest 10%: 32.3% (2014 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)4.2% (2016 est.)
3.1% (2015 est.)
-0.9% (2016 est.)
1% (2015 est.)
Labor force4.623 million (2016 est.)
2.788 million (2016 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 30.5%
industry: 13.7%
services: 55.8% (2016 est.)
agriculture: 21%
industry: 20%
services: 58% (2011 est.)
Unemployment rate2.4% (2016 est.)
2.7% (2015 est.)
5.5% (2016 est.)
5.5% (2015 est.)
note: data are official rates; but underemployment is high
Distribution of family income - Gini index53 (2014 est.)
56 (2011)
37 (2015 est.)
38 (2014)
Budgetrevenues: $7.39 billion
expenditures: $8.186 billion (2016 est.)
revenues: $5.443 billion
expenditures: $6.318 billion (2016 est.)
Industriessugar, textiles and clothing, furniture, chemicals, petroleum, metals, rubber, tourism
food processing, beverages, petroleum, chemicals, fertilizer, textiles, furniture, light metals
Industrial production growth rate3.2% (2016 est.)
2.4% (2016 est.)
Agriculture - productssugarcane, corn, bananas, coffee, beans, cardamom; cattle, sheep, pigs, chickens
coffee, sugar, corn, rice, beans, oilseed, cotton, sorghum; beef, dairy products
Exports$11.43 billion (2016 est.)
$10.83 billion (2015 est.)
$5.335 billion (2016 est.)
$5.485 billion (2015 est.)
Exports - commoditiessugar, coffee, petroleum, apparel, bananas, fruits and vegetables, cardamom, manufacturing products, precious stones and metals, electricity
offshore assembly exports, coffee, sugar, textiles and apparel, ethanol, chemicals, electricity, iron and steel manufactures
Exports - partnersUS 36.4%, El Salvador 12.1%, Honduras 8.8%, Nicaragua 5.4%, Mexico 4.2% (2015)
US 47.1%, Honduras 13.9%, Guatemala 13.6%, Nicaragua 6.6%, Costa Rica 4.5% (2015)
Imports$16.76 billion (2016 est.)
$17.64 billion (2015 est.)
$9.855 billion (2016 est.)
$10.42 billion (2015 est.)
Imports - commoditiesfuels, machinery and transport equipment, construction materials, grain, fertilizers, electricity, mineral products, chemical products, plastic materials and products
raw materials, consumer goods, capital goods, fuels, foodstuffs, petroleum, electricity
Imports - partnersUS 38.4%, Mexico 12%, China 11%, El Salvador 5.3% (2015)
US 39.4%, Guatemala 9.6%, China 8.1%, Mexico 7.4%, Honduras 5.7% (2015)
Debt - external$19.09 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$18.6 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$16.32 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$15.51 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Exchange ratesquetzales (GTQ) per US dollar -
7.648 (2016 est.)
7.6548 (2015 est.)
7.6548 (2014 est.)
7.7322 (2013 est.)
7.83 (2012 est.)
note: the US dollar is used as a medium of exchange and circulates freely in the economy
Fiscal yearcalendar year
calendar year
Public debt27.4% of GDP (2016 est.)
28.8% of GDP (2015 est.)
64.9% of GDP (2016 est.)
65.4% of GDP (2015 est.)
note: El Salvador's total public debt includes non-financial public sector debt, financial public sector debt, and central bank debt
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$8.803 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$7.746 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$3.238 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$2.787 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Current Account Balance$571 million (2016 est.)
-$202 million (2015 est.)
-$669 million (2016 est.)
-$920 million (2015 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$68.39 billion (2016 est.)
$26.61 billion (2016 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home$13.19 billion (2015 est.)
$11.98 billion (2014 est.)
$10.56 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$9.158 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$NA
$4.4 billion (December 2016 est.)
$3.816 billion (December 2015 est.)
$3.535 billion (December 2014 est.)
Commercial bank prime lending rate13.2% (31 December 2016 est.)
13.23% (31 December 2015 est.)
6.5% (23 December 2016 est.)
6.72% (25 December 2015 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$32.41 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$28.7 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$11.39 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$10.85 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of narrow money$10.95 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$10.05 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$3.129 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$3.253 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of broad money$25.3 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$23.25 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$11.97 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$11.61 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Taxes and other revenues10.8% of GDP (2016 est.)
20.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-1.2% of GDP (2016 est.)
-3.3% of GDP (2016 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 6.3%
male: 6.5%
female: 5.8% (2013 est.)
total: 12.4%
male: 11.8%
female: 13.6% (2013 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 84.4%
government consumption: 10.4%
investment in fixed capital: 13.3%
investment in inventories: 0.5%
exports of goods and services: 21.4%
imports of goods and services: -30% (2016 est.)
household consumption: 91.5%
government consumption: 12.3%
investment in fixed capital: 14.4%
investment in inventories: -0.1%
exports of goods and services: 26.2%
imports of goods and services: -44.3% (2016 est.)
Gross national saving12.9% of GDP (2016 est.)
13.1% of GDP (2015 est.)
11.6% of GDP (2014 est.)
12.2% of GDP (2016 est.)
10.4% of GDP (2015 est.)
8.4% of GDP (2014 est.)

Energy

GuatemalaEl Salvador
Electricity - production10.88 billion kWh (2016 est.)
5.482 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - consumption9.833 billion kWh (2016 est.)
6.351 billion kWh (2016)
Electricity - exports1.335 billion kWh (2016 est.)
74.3 million kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports746.9 million kWh (2016 est.)
1.066 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Oil - production8,976 bbl/day (2016 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - imports0 bbl/day (2013 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - exports7,407 bbl/day (2016 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - proved reserves83.07 million bbl (1 January 2016 est.)
0 bbl (1 January 2016 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves2.96 billion cu m (1 January 2006 es)
0 cu m (1 January 2016 es)
Natural gas - production0 cu m (2013 est.)
0 cu m (2016 est.)
Natural gas - consumption0 cu m (2013 est.)
0 cu m (2016 est.)
Natural gas - exports0 cu m (2013 est.)
0 cu m (2016 est.)
Natural gas - imports0 cu m (2013 est.)
0 cu m (2016 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity4.139 million kW (2016 est.)
1.792 million kW (2016 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels61% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
42.3% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants33.6% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
31.8% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels0% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
0% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources5.3% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
25.9% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production1,069 bbl/day (2016 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption91,900 bbl/day (2016 est.)
34,580 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports11,780 bbl/day (2016 est.)
554 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports104,200 bbl/day (2016 est.)
47,810 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy13.6 million Mt (2013 est.)
4.318 million Mt (2015 est.)
Electricity accesspopulation without electricity: 1,600,000
electrification - total population: 78%
electrification - urban areas: 85%
electrification - rural areas: 72% (2013)
population without electricity: 400,000
electrification - total population: 94%
electrification - urban areas: 98%
electrification - rural areas: 86% (2013)

Telecommunications

GuatemalaEl Salvador
Telephones - main lines in usetotal subscriptions: 1,718,851
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 12 (July 2015 est.)
total subscriptions: 944,266
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 15 (July 2015 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellulartotal: 18.121 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 121 (July 2015 est.)
total: 9.334 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 152 (July 2015 est.)
Telephone systemgeneral assessment: fairly modern network centered in the city of Guatemala
domestic: state-owned telecommunications company privatized in the late 1990s opened the way for competition; fixed-line teledensity roughly 15 per 100 persons; fixed-line investments are being concentrated on improving rural connectivity; mobile-cellular teledensity about 115 per 100 persons
international: country code - 502; landing point for both the Americas Region Caribbean Ring System (ARCOS-1) and the SAM-1 fiber-optic submarine cable system that, together, provide connectivity to South and Central America, parts of the Caribbean, and the US; connected to Central American Microwave System; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2017)
general assessment: multiple mobile-cellular began rolling out Long Term Evolution (LTE) data services in late-2016; growth in fixed-line services has slowed in the face of mobile-cellular competition; Internet usage grew almost 400% between 2007 and 2015
domestic: nationwide microwave radio relay system
international: country code - 503; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); connected to Central American Microwave System (2017)
Internet country code.gt
.sv
Internet userstotal: 4.043 million
percent of population: 27.1% (July 2015 est.)
total: 1.653 million
percent of population: 26.9% (July 2015 est.)
Broadcast media4 privately owned national terrestrial TV channels dominate TV broadcasting; multi-channel satellite and cable services are available; 1 government-owned radio station and hundreds of privately owned radio stations (2007)
multiple privately owned national terrestrial TV networks, supplemented by cable TV networks that carry international channels; hundreds of commercial radio broadcast stations and 1 government-owned radio broadcast station; transition to digital transmission to begin in 2018 along with adaptation of the Japanese-Brazilian Digital Standard (ISDB-T) (2017)

Transportation

GuatemalaEl Salvador
Railwaystotal: 800 km
narrow gauge: 800 km 0.914-m gauge (2014)
total: 12.5 km
narrow gauge: 12.5 km 0.914-m gauge (2014)
Roadwaystotal: 17,621 km
paved: 7,489 km
unpaved: 10,132 km (includes 4,960 km of rural roads) (2016)
total: 6,979 km
paved: 4,414 km (includes 341 km of expressways)
unpaved: 2,565 km (2016)
Waterways990 km (260 km navigable year round; additional 730 km navigable during high-water season) (2012)
(Rio Lempa is partially navigable by small craft) (2011)
Ports and terminalsmajor seaport(s): Puerto Quetzal, Santo Tomas de Castilla
major seaport(s): Puerto Cutuco
oil terminal(s): Acajutla offshore terminal
Airports291 (2013)
68 (2013)
Airports - with paved runwaystotal: 16
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
1,524 to 2,437 m: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 6
under 914 m: 4 (2013)
total: 5
over 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 2
under 914 m: 1 (2013)
Airports - with unpaved runwaystotal: 275
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 77
under 914 m: 195 (2013)
total: 63
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 11
under 914 m: 51 (2013)
Heliports1 (2013)
2 (2013)

Military

GuatemalaEl Salvador
Military branchesNational Army of Guatemala (Ejercito Nacional de Guatemala, ENG, includes Guatemalan Navy (Fuerza de Mar, including Marines) and Guatemalan Air Force (Fuerza Aerea Guatemalteca, FAG)) (2013)
Salvadoran Armed Forces (Fuerza Armada de El Salvador, FAES): Salvadoran Army (Ejercito de El Salvador, ES), Salvadoran Navy (Fuerza Naval de El Salvador, FNES), Salvadoran Air Force (Fuerza Aerea Salvadorena, FAS) (2017)
Military service age and obligationall male citizens between the ages of 18 and 50 are eligible for military service; in practice, most of the force is volunteer, however, a selective draft system is employed, resulting in a small portion of 17-21 year-olds conscripted; conscript service obligation varies from 1 to 2 years; women can serve as officers (2013)
18 years of age for selective compulsory military service; 16-22 years of age for voluntary male or female service; service obligation is 12 months, with 11 months for officers and NCOs (2012)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP0.42% of GDP (2016)
0.39% of GDP (2015)
0.42% of GDP (2014)
0.46% of GDP (2013)
0.45% of GDP (2012)
0.86% of GDP (2015)
0.93% of GDP (2014)
0.98% of GDP (2013)
0.94% of GDP (2012)
0.95% of GDP (2011)

Transnational Issues

GuatemalaEl Salvador
Disputes - internationalannual ministerial meetings under the Organization of American States-initiated Agreement on the Framework for Negotiations and Confidence Building Measures continue to address Guatemalan land and maritime claims in Belize and the Caribbean Sea; Guatemala persists in its territorial claim to half of Belize, but agrees to Line of Adjacency to keep Guatemalan squatters out of Belize's forested interior; both countries agreed in April 2012 to hold simultaneous referenda, scheduled for 6 October 2013, to decide whether to refer the dispute to the ICJ for binding resolution, but this vote was suspended indefinitely; Mexico must deal with thousands of impoverished Guatemalans and other Central Americans who cross the porous border looking for work in Mexico and the US
"International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled on the delimitation of ""bolsones"" (disputed areas) along the El Salvador-Honduras boundary, in 1992, with final agreement by the parties in 2006 after an Organization of American States survey and a further ICJ ruling in 2003; the 1992 ICJ ruling advised a tripartite resolution to a maritime boundary in the Gulf of Fonseca advocating Honduran access to the Pacific; El Salvador continues to claim tiny Conejo Island, not identified in the ICJ decision, off Honduras in the Gulf of Fonseca
"
Illicit drugsmajor transit country for cocaine and heroin; in 2005, cultivated 100 hectares of opium poppy after reemerging as a potential source of opium in 2004; potential production of less than 1 metric ton of pure heroin; marijuana cultivation for mostly domestic consumption; proximity to Mexico makes Guatemala a major staging area for drugs (particularly for cocaine); money laundering is a serious problem; corruption is a major problem
transshipment point for cocaine; small amounts of marijuana produced for local consumption; significant use of cocaine
Refugees and internally displaced personsIDPs: 257,000 (more than three decades of internal conflict that ended in 1996 displaced mainly the indigenous Maya population and rural peasants; ongoing drug cartel and gang violence) (2016)
IDPs: 289,000 (2015)

Source: CIA Factbook