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Honduras vs. El Salvador

Introduction

HondurasEl Salvador
BackgroundOnce part of Spain's vast empire in the New World, Honduras became an independent nation in 1821. After two and a half decades of mostly military rule, a freely elected civilian government came to power in 1982. During the 1980s, Honduras proved a haven for anti-Sandinista contras fighting the Marxist Nicaraguan Government and an ally to Salvadoran Government forces fighting leftist guerrillas. The country was devastated by Hurricane Mitch in 1998, which killed about 5,600 people and caused approximately $2 billion in damage. Since then, the economy has slowly rebounded.
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

HondurasEl Salvador
LocationCentral America, bordering the Caribbean Sea, between Guatemala and Nicaragua and bordering the Gulf of Fonseca (North Pacific Ocean), between El Salvador and Nicaragua
Central America, bordering the North Pacific Ocean, between Guatemala and Honduras
Geographic coordinates15 00 N, 86 30 W
13 50 N, 88 55 W
Map referencesCentral America and the Caribbean
Central America and the Caribbean
Areatotal: 112,090 sq km
land: 111,890 sq km
water: 200 sq km
total: 21,041 sq km
land: 20,721 sq km
water: 320 sq km
Area - comparativeslightly larger than Tennessee
about the same size as New Jersey
Land boundariestotal: 1,575 km
border countries (3): Guatemala 244 km, El Salvador 391 km, Nicaragua 940 km
total: 590 km
border countries (2): Guatemala 199 km, Honduras 391 km
Coastline823 km (Caribbean Sea 669 km, Gulf of Fonseca 163 km)
307 km
Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: natural extension of territory or to 200 nm
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climatesubtropical in lowlands, temperate in mountains
tropical; rainy season (May to October); dry season (November to April); tropical on coast; temperate in uplands
Terrainmostly mountains in interior, narrow coastal plains
mostly mountains with narrow coastal belt and central plateau
Elevation extremesmean elevation: 684 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
highest point: Cerro Las Minas 2,870 m
mean elevation: 442 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
highest point: Cerro El Pital 2,730 m
Natural resourcestimber, gold, silver, copper, lead, zinc, iron ore, antimony, coal, fish, hydropower
hydropower, geothermal power, petroleum, arable land
Land useagricultural land: 28.8%
arable land 9.1%; permanent crops 4%; permanent pasture 15.7%
forest: 45.3%
other: 25.9% (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 land900 sq km (2012)
452 sq km (2012)
Natural hazardsfrequent, but generally mild, earthquakes; extremely susceptible to damaging hurricanes and floods along the Caribbean coast
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 issuesurban population expanding; deforestation results from logging and the clearing of land for agricultural purposes; further land degradation and soil erosion hastened by uncontrolled development and improper land use practices such as farming of marginal lands; mining activities polluting Lago de Yojoa (the country's largest source of fresh water), as well as several rivers and streams, with heavy metals
deforestation; soil erosion; water pollution; contamination of soils from disposal of toxic wastes
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands
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 - notehas only a short Pacific coast but a long Caribbean shoreline, including the virtually uninhabited eastern Mosquito Coast
smallest Central American country and only one without a coastline on Caribbean Sea
Population distributionmost residents live in the mountainous western half of the country; unlike other Central American nations, Honduras is the only one with an urban population that is distributed between two large centers - the capital of Tegucigalpa and the city of San Pedro Sula; the Rio Ulua valley in the north is the only densely populated lowland area
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

HondurasEl Salvador
Population8,893,259
note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2016 est.)
6,156,670 (July 2016 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 33.55% (male 1,524,195/female 1,459,679)
15-24 years: 21.09% (male 956,315/female 918,925)
25-54 years: 36.19% (male 1,627,072/female 1,591,025)
55-64 years: 4.99% (male 207,821/female 235,776)
65 years and over: 4.19% (male 161,734/female 210,717) (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: 22.6 years
male: 22.3 years
female: 23 years (2016 est.)
total: 26.6 years
male: 25.1 years
female: 28.1 years (2016 est.)
Population growth rate1.64% (2016 est.)
0.25% (2016 est.)
Birth rate22.8 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)
16.3 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Death rate5.2 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)
5.7 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Net migration rate-1.1 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: 1.04 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.88 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.77 male(s)/female
total population: 1.01 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: 17.7 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 20 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 15.2 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: 71.1 years
male: 69.5 years
female: 72.8 years (2016 est.)
total population: 74.7 years
male: 71.4 years
female: 78.1 years (2016 est.)
Total fertility rate2.72 children born/woman (2016 est.)
1.89 children born/woman (2016 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate0.37% (2015 est.)
0.51% (2015 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Honduran(s)
adjective: Honduran
noun: Salvadoran(s)
adjective: Salvadoran
Ethnic groupsmestizo (mixed Amerindian and European) 90%, Amerindian 7%, black 2%, white 1%
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/AIDS20,000 (2015 est.)
19,800 (2015 est.)
ReligionsRoman Catholic 97%, Protestant 3%
Roman Catholic 50%, Protestant 36%, other 2%, none 12% (2014 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths1,000 (2015 est.)
400 (2015 est.)
LanguagesSpanish (official), Amerindian dialects
Spanish (official), Nawat (among some Amerindians)
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 88.5%
male: 88.4%
female: 88.6% (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 diseases: 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: 12 years (2014)
total: 13 years
male: 13 years
female: 13 years (2014)
Education expenditures5.9% of GDP (2013)
3.4% of GDP (2014)
Urbanizationurban population: 54.7% of total population (2015)
rate of urbanization: 3.14% 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: 97.4% of population
rural: 83.8% of population
total: 91.2% of population
unimproved:
urban: 2.6% of population
rural: 16.2% of population
total: 8.8% 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: 86.7% of population
rural: 77.7% of population
total: 82.6% of population
unimproved:
urban: 13.3% of population
rural: 22.3% of population
total: 17.4% 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 - populationTEGUCIGALPA (capital) 1.123 million; San Pedro Sula 852,000 (2015)
SAN SALVADOR (capital) 1.098 million (2015)
Maternal mortality rate129 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
54 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight7.1% (2012)
5% (2014)
Health expenditures8.7% of GDP (2014)
6.8% of GDP (2014)
Hospital bed density0.7 beds/1,000 population (2012)
1.1 beds/1,000 population (2012)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate16.3% (2014)
20.1% (2014)
Child labor - children ages 5-14total number: 280,809
percentage: 16% (2002 est.)
total number: 179,303
percentage: 4%
note: data represent children ages 5-17 (2007 est.)
Mother's mean age at first birth20.4 years
note: median age a first birth among women 25-29 (2011-12 est.)
20.8 years
note: median age at first birth among women 25-29 (2008 est.)
Demographic profileHonduras is one of the poorest countries in Latin America and has the world's highest murder rate. More than half of the population lives in poverty and per capita income is one of the lowest in the region. Poverty rates are higher among rural and indigenous people and in the south, west, and along the eastern border than in the north and central areas where most of Honduras' industries and infrastructure are concentrated. The increased productivity needed to break Honduras' persistent high poverty rate depends, in part, on further improvements in educational attainment. Although primary-school enrollment is near 100%, educational quality is poor, the drop-out rate and grade repetition remain high, and teacher and school accountability is low.
Honduras' population growth rate has slowed since the 1990s, but it remains high at nearly 2% annually because the birth rate averages approximately three children per woman and more among rural, indigenous, and poor women. Consequently, Honduras' young adult population - ages 15 to 29 - is projected to continue growing rapidly for the next three decades and then stabilize or slowly shrink. Population growth and limited job prospects outside of agriculture will continue to drive emigration. Remittances represent about a fifth of GDP.
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 rate73.2% (2011/12)
72% (2014)
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 57.8
youth dependency ratio: 50.1
elderly dependency ratio: 7.7
potential support ratio: 13.1 (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

HondurasEl Salvador
Country name"conventional long form: Republic of Honduras
conventional short form: Honduras
local long form: Republica de Honduras
local short form: Honduras
etymology: the name means ""depths"" in Spanish and refers to the deep anchorage in the northern Bay of Trujillo
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"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: Tegucigalpa
geographic coordinates: 14 06 N, 87 13 W
time difference: UTC-6 (1 hour behind Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: none scheduled for 2013
name: San Salvador
geographic coordinates: 13 42 N, 89 12 W
time difference: UTC-6 (1 hour behind Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions18 departments (departamentos, singular - departamento); Atlantida, Choluteca, Colon, Comayagua, Copan, Cortes, El Paraiso, Francisco Morazan, Gracias a Dios, Intibuca, Islas de la Bahia, La Paz, Lempira, Ocotepeque, Olancho, Santa Barbara, Valle, Yoro
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 approved 11 January 1982, effective 20 January 1982; amended many times, last in 2012; note - in 2015, the Honduran Supreme Court struck down several constitutional articles on presidential term limits (2016)
many previous; latest drafted 16 December 1983, enacted 23 December 1983; amended many times, last in 2014 (2016)
Legal systemcivil law system
civil law system with minor common law influence; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court
Suffrage18 years of age; universal and compulsory
18 years of age; universal
Executive branchchief of state: President Juan Orlando HERNANDEZ Alvarado (since 27 January 2014); Vice Presidents Ricardo ALVAREZ, Rossana GUEVARA, and Lorena HERRERA (since 27 January 2014); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government
head of government: President Juan Orlando HERNANDEZ Alvarado (since 27 January 2014); Vice Presidents Ricardo ALVAREZ, Rossana GUEVARA, and Lorena HERRERA (since 27 January 2014)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by president
elections/appointments: president directly elected by simple majority popular vote for a single 4-year term; election last held on 24 November 2013 (next to be held in November 2017)
election results: Juan Orlando HERNANDEZ Alvarado elected president; percent of vote - Juan Orlando HERNANDEZ Alvarado (PNH) 36.9%, Xiomara CASTRO (LIBRE) 28.8%, Mauricio VILLEDA (PL) 20.3%, Salvador NASRALLA (PAC) 13.4%, other 0.6%
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 National Congress or Congreso Nacional (128 seats; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote; members serve 4-year terms)
elections: last held on 24 November 2013 (next to be held in November 2017)
election results: percent of vote by party - PNH 33.6%, LIBRE 27.5%, PL 17.0%, PAC 15.2%, PINU 1.9%, UD 1.7%, DC 1.6%, other 1.5%; seats by party - PNH 48, LIBRE 37, PL 27, PAC 13, PINU 1, UD 1, DC 1; note - as of 6 January 2016, seats by party are as follows: PNH 49, PL 27, LIBRE 31, PAC 13, VAMOS 4, PINU 1, UD 1, independents 2
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 (15 principal judges - including the court president - and 7 alternates; court organized into civil, criminal, constitutional, and labor chambers); note - the court has both judicial and constitutional jurisdiction
judge selection and term of office: court president elected by his peers; judges elected by the National Congress from candidates proposed by the Nominating Board, a diverse 7-member group of judicial officials, other government and non-government officials selected by each of their organizations; judges elected by Congress for renewable, 7-year terms
subordinate courts: courts of appeal; courts of first instance; peace 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 leadersAnti-Corruption Party or PAC [Salvador NASRALLA]
Christian Democratic Party or DC [Felicito AVILA Ordonez]
Democratic Unification Party or UD [Cesar HAM]
Freedom and Refounding Party or LIBRE [Jose Manuel ZELAYA Rosales]
Go Solidarity Movement or VAMOS [Augusto CRUZ Asensio]
Liberal Party or PL [Mauricio VILLEDA Bermudez]
National Party of Honduras or PNH [Gladys Aurora LOPEZ]
Social Democratic Innovation and Unity Party or PINU [Jorge Rafael AGUILAR Paredes]
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 leadersBeverage and Related Industries Syndicate or STIBYS
Committee for the Defense of Human Rights in Honduras or CODEH
Commiittee of the Relatives of the Disappeared in Honduras or COFADEH
Confederation of Honduran Workers or CTH
Coordinating Committee of Popular Organizations or CCOP
General Workers Confederation or CGT
Honduran Council of Private Enterprise or COHEP
National Association of Honduran Campesinos or ANACH
National Union of Campesinos or UNC
Popular Bloc or BP
United Confederation of Honduran Workers or CUTH
United Farm Workers' Movement of the Aguan OR MUCA
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 (candidate country), FAO, G-11, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC (suspended), IOM, IPU, ISO (subscriber), ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAES, LAIA (observer), MIGA, MINURSO, MINUSTAH, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, Pacific Alliance (observer), PCA, Petrocaribe, SICA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, Union Latina, UNWTO, UPU, WCO (suspended), 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 Marlon Ramsses TABORA Munoz (since 24 April 2017)
chancery: Suite 4-M, 3007 Tilden Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 966-2604
FAX: [1] (202) 966-9751
consulate(s): Dallas, McAllen (TX0
consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco
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 James D. NEALON (since 21 August 2014)
embassy: Avenida La Paz, Apartado Postal No. 3453, Tegucigalpa
mailing address: American Embassy, APO AA 34022, Tegucigalpa
telephone: [504] 2236-9320, 2238-5114
FAX: [504] 2236-9037
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 horizontal bands of cerulean blue (top), white, and cerulean blue, with five cerulean, five-pointed stars arranged in an X pattern centered in the white band; the stars represent the members of the former Federal Republic of Central America: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua; the blue bands symbolize the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea; the white band represents the land between the two bodies of water and the peace and prosperity of its people
note: similar to the flag of El Salvador, which features a round emblem encircled by the words REPUBLICA DE EL SALVADOR EN LA AMERICA CENTRAL centered in the white band; also similar to the flag of Nicaragua, which features a triangle encircled by the words REPUBLICA DE NICARAGUA on top and AMERICA CENTRAL on the bottom, centered in the white band
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 Honduras"" (National Anthem of Honduras)
lyrics/music: Augusto Constancio COELLO/Carlos HARTLING
note: adopted 1915; the anthem's seven verses chronicle Honduran history; on official occasions, only the chorus and last verse are sung
"
"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 participationaccepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
National symbol(s)scarlet macaw, white-tailed deer; 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: 1 to 3 years
citizenship by birth: yes
citizenship by descent: yes
dual citizenship recognized: yes
residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years

Economy

HondurasEl Salvador
Economy - overviewHonduras, the second poorest country in Central America, suffers from extraordinarily unequal distribution of income, as well as high underemployment. While historically dependent on the export of bananas and coffee, Honduras has diversified its export base to include apparel and automobile wire harnessing.

Honduras’s economy depends heavily on US trade and remittances. The US-Central America-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement came into force in 2006 and has helped foster foreign direct investment, but physical and political insecurity, as well as crime and perceptions of corruption, may deter potential investors; about 15% of foreign direct investment is from US firms.

The economy registered modest economic growth of 3.1%-3.6% from 2010 to 2016, insufficient to improve living standards for the nearly 65% of the population in poverty. In 2016, Honduras faced rising public debt but its economy has performed better than expected due to low oil prices and improved investor confidence. The IMF continues to monitor the three-year standby arrangement signed in December 2014, aimed at easing Honduras’s poor fiscal position.
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)$43.19 billion (2016 est.)
$41.68 billion (2015 est.)
$40.22 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 rate3.6% (2016 est.)
3.6% (2015 est.)
3.1% (2014 est.)
2.4% (2016 est.)
2.5% (2015 est.)
1.4% (2014 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$5,300 (2016 est.)
$5,200 (2015 est.)
$5,100 (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: 13.8%
industry: 26.6%
services: 59.6% (2016 est.)
agriculture: 10.6%
industry: 25.3%
services: 64.1% (2016 est.)
Population below poverty line29.6% (2014)
34.9% (2015 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 1.2%
highest 10%: 38.4% (2014)
lowest 10%: 2.2%
highest 10%: 32.3% (2014 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)2.9% (2016 est.)
3.2% (2015 est.)
-0.9% (2016 est.)
1% (2015 est.)
Labor force3.625 million (2016 est.)
2.788 million (2016 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 39.2%
industry: 20.9%
services: 39.8% (2005 est.)
agriculture: 21%
industry: 20%
services: 58% (2011 est.)
Unemployment rate3.9% (2016 est.)
4.1% (2015 est.)
note: about one-third of the people are underemployed
5.5% (2016 est.)
5.5% (2015 est.)
note: data are official rates; but underemployment is high
Distribution of family income - Gini index47.1 (2014)
45.7 (2009)
37 (2015 est.)
38 (2014)
Budgetrevenues: $3.982 billion
expenditures: $4.384 billion (2016 est.)
revenues: $5.443 billion
expenditures: $6.318 billion (2016 est.)
Industriessugar, coffee, woven and knit apparel, wood products, cigars
food processing, beverages, petroleum, chemicals, fertilizer, textiles, furniture, light metals
Industrial production growth rate3.3% (2016 est.)
2.4% (2016 est.)
Agriculture - productsbananas, coffee, citrus, corn, African palm; beef; timber; shrimp, tilapia, lobster, sugar, oriental vegetables
coffee, sugar, corn, rice, beans, oilseed, cotton, sorghum; beef, dairy products
Exports$8.165 billion (2016 est.)
$8.041 billion (2015 est.)
$5.335 billion (2016 est.)
$5.485 billion (2015 est.)
Exports - commoditiescoffee, apparel, coffee, shrimp, automobile wire harnesses, cigars, bananas, gold, palm oil, fruit, lobster, lumber
offshore assembly exports, coffee, sugar, textiles and apparel, ethanol, chemicals, electricity, iron and steel manufactures
Exports - partnersUS 36%, Germany 8.7%, El Salvador 8.5%, Guatemala 6%, Nicaragua 5.6%, Netherlands 4.1% (2015)
US 47.1%, Honduras 13.9%, Guatemala 13.6%, Nicaragua 6.6%, Costa Rica 4.5% (2015)
Imports$11.25 billion (2016 est.)
$11.1 billion (2015 est.)
$9.855 billion (2016 est.)
$10.42 billion (2015 est.)
Imports - commoditiescommunications equipment, machinery and transport, industrial raw materials, chemical products, fuels, foodstuffs
raw materials, consumer goods, capital goods, fuels, foodstuffs, petroleum, electricity
Imports - partnersUS 35.2%, China 13.6%, Guatemala 9.2%, Mexico 6.6%, El Salvador 5.1% (2015)
US 39.4%, Guatemala 9.6%, China 8.1%, Mexico 7.4%, Honduras 5.7% (2015)
Debt - external$8.042 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$7.649 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$16.32 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$15.51 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Exchange rateslempiras (HNL) per US dollar -
23.07 (2016 est.)
22.098 (2015 est.)
22.098 (2014 est.)
21.137 (2013 est.)
19.64 (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 debt47.3% of GDP (2016 est.)
45.3% 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$3.846 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$3.755 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$3.238 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$2.787 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Current Account Balance-$810 million (2016 est.)
-$1.291 billion (2015 est.)
-$669 million (2016 est.)
-$920 million (2015 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$20.93 billion (2016 est.)
$26.61 billion (2016 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$NA
$4.4 billion (December 2016 est.)
$3.816 billion (December 2015 est.)
$3.535 billion (December 2014 est.)
Commercial bank prime lending rate20.8% (31 December 2016 est.)
20.66% (31 December 2015 est.)
6.5% (23 December 2016 est.)
6.72% (25 December 2015 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$12.5 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$11.84 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$11.39 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$10.85 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of narrow money$2.51 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$2.326 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$3.129 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$3.253 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Stock of broad money$8.486 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$8.042 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$11.97 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$11.61 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Taxes and other revenues19% of GDP (2016 est.)
20.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-1.9% of GDP (2016 est.)
-3.3% of GDP (2016 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 8%
male: 5.5%
female: 13.8% (2011 est.)
total: 12.4%
male: 11.8%
female: 13.6% (2013 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 81.3%
government consumption: 15.2%
investment in fixed capital: 23.3%
investment in inventories: 1%
exports of goods and services: 43.1%
imports of goods and services: -63.9% (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 saving20.3% of GDP (2016 est.)
18.8% of GDP (2015 est.)
14.6% of GDP (2014 est.)
12.2% of GDP (2016 est.)
10.4% of GDP (2015 est.)
8.4% of GDP (2014 est.)

Energy

HondurasEl Salvador
Electricity - production7.7 billion kWh (2014 est.)
5.482 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - consumption5.3 billion kWh (2014 est.)
6.351 billion kWh (2016)
Electricity - exports500 million kWh (2014 est.)
74.3 million kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports800 million kWh (2014 est.)
1.066 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Oil - production0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - imports0 bbl/day (2013 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - exports0 bbl/day (2013 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - proved reserves0 bbl (1 January 2016 est.)
0 bbl (1 January 2016 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves0 cu m (1 January 2014 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 capacity2.1 million kW (2014 est.)
1.792 million kW (2016 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels60.9% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
42.3% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants28.7% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
31.8% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
0% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources10.4% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
25.9% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production0 bbl/day (2013 est.)
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption53,000 bbl/day (2014 est.)
34,580 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports13,160 bbl/day (2013 est.)
554 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports64,820 bbl/day (2013 est.)
47,810 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy10 million Mt (2013 est.)
4.318 million Mt (2015 est.)
Electricity accesspopulation without electricity: 900,000
electrification - total population: 82%
electrification - urban areas: 97%
electrification - rural areas: 66% (2013)
population without electricity: 400,000
electrification - total population: 94%
electrification - urban areas: 98%
electrification - rural areas: 86% (2013)

Telecommunications

HondurasEl Salvador
Telephones - main lines in usetotal subscriptions: 497,072
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 6 (July 2015 est.)
total subscriptions: 944,266
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 15 (July 2015 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellulartotal: 8.048 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 92 (July 2015 est.)
total: 9.334 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 152 (July 2015 est.)
Telephone systemgeneral assessment: fixed-line connections are increasing but still limited; competition among multiple providers of mobile-cellular services is contributing to a sharp increase in subscribership
domestic: beginning in 2003, private sub-operators allowed to provide fixed lines in order to expand telephone coverage contributing to a small increase in fixed-line teledensity; mobile-cellular subscribership is roughly 90 per 100 persons
international: country code - 504; landing point for both the Americas Region Caribbean Ring System (ARCOS-1) and the MAYA-1 fiber-optic submarine cable system that together provide connectivity to South and Central America, parts of the Caribbean, and the US; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); connected to Central American Microwave System (2015)
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.hn
.sv
Internet userstotal: 1.781 million
percent of population: 20.4% (July 2015 est.)
total: 1.653 million
percent of population: 26.9% (July 2015 est.)
Broadcast mediamultiple privately owned terrestrial TV networks, supplemented by multiple cable TV networks; Radio Honduras is the lone government-owned radio network; roughly 300 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

HondurasEl Salvador
Railwaystotal: 699 km
narrow gauge: 164 km 1.067-m gauge; 115 km 1.057-m gauge; 420 km 0.914-m gauge (2014)
total: 12.5 km
narrow gauge: 12.5 km 0.914-m gauge (2014)
Roadwaystotal: 14,742 km
paved: 3,367 km
unpaved: 11,375 km (1,543 km summer only)
note: an additional 8,951 km of non-official roads used by the coffee industry (2012)
total: 6,979 km
paved: 4,414 km (includes 341 km of expressways)
unpaved: 2,565 km (2016)
Waterways465 km (most navigable only by small craft) (2012)
(Rio Lempa is partially navigable by small craft) (2011)
Ports and terminalsmajor seaport(s): La Ceiba, Puerto Cortes, San Lorenzo, Tela
major seaport(s): Puerto Cutuco
oil terminal(s): Acajutla offshore terminal
Airports103 (2013)
68 (2013)
Airports - with paved runwaystotal: 13
2,438 to 3,047 m: 3
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 4
under 914 m: 3 (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: 90
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 16
under 914 m: 73 (2013)
total: 63
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 11
under 914 m: 51 (2013)

Military

HondurasEl Salvador
Military branchesHonduran Armed Forces (Fuerzas Armadas de Honduras, FFAA): Army, Navy (includes Naval Infantry), Honduran Air Force (Fuerza Aerea Hondurena, FAH) (2012)
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 obligation18 years of age for voluntary 2- to 3-year military service; no conscription (2012)
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 GDP1.55% of GDP (2015)
1.64% of GDP (2014)
1.55% of GDP (2013)
1.15% of GDP (2012)
1.13% of GDP (2011)
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

HondurasEl Salvador
Disputes - international"International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled on the delimitation of ""bolsones"" (disputed areas) along the El Salvador-Honduras border in 1992 with final settlement 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 with consideration of Honduran access to the Pacific; El Salvador continues to claim tiny Conejo Island, not mentioned in the ICJ ruling, off Honduras in the Gulf of Fonseca; Honduras claims the Belizean-administered Sapodilla Cays off the coast of Belize in its constitution, but agreed to a joint ecological park around the cays should Guatemala consent to a maritime corridor in the Caribbean under the OAS-sponsored 2002 Belize-Guatemala Differendum
"
"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 drugstransshipment point for drugs and narcotics; illicit producer of cannabis, cultivated on small plots and used principally for local consumption; corruption is a major problem; some money-laundering activity
transshipment point for cocaine; small amounts of marijuana produced for local consumption; significant use of cocaine
Refugees and internally displaced personsIDPs: 190,000 (violence, extortion, threats, forced recruitment by urban gangs) (2016)
IDPs: 289,000 (2015)

Source: CIA Factbook