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Flag of Martinique
Map of Martinique
Introduction Martinique
Background:
The French began to settle this island in 1635, overcoming resistance from the local Carib inhabitants. In 1660, the suviving natives were rounded up and permanently expelled. The island has subsequently remained a French possession except for three brief periods of foreign occupation.
Geography Martinique
Location:
Caribbean, island between the Caribbean Sea and North Atlantic Ocean, north of Trinidad and Tobago
Geographic coordinates:
14 40 N, 61 00 W
Map references:
Central America and the Caribbean
Area:
total: 1,100 sq km
land: 1,060 sq km
water: 40 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly more than six times the size of Washington, DC
Land boundaries:
0 km
Coastline:
350 km
Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climate:
tropical; moderated by trade winds; rainy season (June to October); vulnerable to devastating cyclones (hurricanes) every eight years on average; average temperature 17.3 degrees C; humid
Terrain:
mountainous with indented coastline; dormant volcano
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
highest point: Montagne Pelee 1,397 m
Natural resources:
coastal scenery and beaches, cultivable land
Land use:
arable land: 9.09%
permanent crops: 10%
other: 80.91% (2005)
Irrigated land:
70 sq km (2003)
Natural hazards:
hurricanes, flooding, and volcanic activity (an average of one major natural disaster every five years)
Environment - current issues:
NA
Geography - note:
the island is dominated by Mount Pelee, which on 8 May 1902 erupted and completely destroyed the city of Saint Pierre, killing 30,000 inhabitants
People Martinique
Population:
436,131 (July 2006 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 22.1% (male 48,988/female 47,525)
15-64 years: 67.3% (male 147,082/female 146,470)
65 years and over: 10.6% (male 20,791/female 25,275) (2006 est.)
Median age:
total: 34.1 years
male: 33.4 years
female: 34.8 years (2006 est.)
Population growth rate:
0.72% (2006 est.)
Birth rate:
13.74 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Death rate:
6.48 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Net migration rate:
-0.03 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.02 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.82 male(s)/female
total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2006 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: 6.95 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 4.68 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 9.27 deaths/1,000 live births (2006 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 79.18 years
male: 79.5 years
female: 78.85 years (2006 est.)
Total fertility rate:
1.79 children born/woman (2006 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
NA
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
NA
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
NA
Nationality:
noun: Martiniquais (singular and plural)
adjective: Martiniquais
Ethnic groups:
African and African-white-Indian mixture 90%, white 5%, East Indian and Chinese less than 5%
Religions:
Roman Catholic 85%, Protestant 10.5%, Muslim 0.5%, Hindu 0.5%, other 3.5% (1997)
Languages:
French, Creole patois
Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 97.7%
male: 97.4%
female: 98.1% (2003 est.)
Government Martinique
Country name:
conventional long form: Department of Martinique
conventional short form: Martinique
local long form: Departement de la Martinique
local short form: Martinique
Dependency status:
overseas department of France
Government type:
NA
Capital:
name: Fort-de-France
geographic coordinates: 14 36 N, 61 05 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions:
none (overseas department of France)
Independence:
none (overseas department of France)
National holiday:
Bastille Day, 14 July (1789)
Constitution:
4 October 1958 (French Constitution)
Legal system:
French legal system
Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: President Jacques CHIRAC of France (since 17 May 1995); Prefect Yves DASSONVILLE (since 14 January 2004); note - took office 8 February 2004
head of government: President of the General Council Claude LISE (since 22 March 1992); President of the Regional Council Alfred MARIE-JEANNE (since NA March 1998)
cabinet: NA
elections: French president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; prefect appointed by the French president on the advice of the French Ministry of Interior; the presidents of the General and Regional Councils are elected by the members of those councils for six-year terms
Legislative branch:
unicameral General Council or Conseil General (45 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve six-year terms) and a unicameral Regional Council or Conseil Regional (41 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve six-year terms)
elections: General Council - last held March 2000 (next to be held in 2006); Regional Council - last held on 28 March 2004 (next to be held by March 2010)
election results: General Council - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - left-wing candidates 13, PPM 11, RPR 6, right-wing candidates 5, PCM 3, UDF 3, PMS 2, independents 2; note - the PPM won a plurality; Regional Council (second round) - percent of vote by party - MIM 53.8%, PPM 30.6%; seats by party - MIM 28, PPM 9, other 4
note: Martinique elects 2 seats to the French Senate; elections last held September 2004 (next to be held September 2008); results - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PPM 1, left-wing candidate 1; Martinique also elects 4 seats to the French National Assembly; elections last held, first round - 9 June 2002, second round - 16 June 2002 (next to be held not later than June 2007); results - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - UMP-RPR 1, PMS 1, MIM 1, left-wing candidate 1 (candidacy of the left-wing candidate was found invalid by the Constitutional Council; new elections will be called)
Judicial branch:
Court of Appeal or Cour d'Appel
Political parties and leaders:
Martinique Communist Party or PCM [Georges ERICHOT]; Martinique Independence Movement or MIM [Alfred MARIE-JEANNE]; Martinique Progressive Party or PPM [Pierre SUEDILE]; Martinique Socialist Party or PMS [Ernest WAN-AJOUHU]; Movement of Democrats and Ecologists for a Sovereign Martinique or Modemas [Garcin MALSA]; Rally for the Republic or RPR [Michel CHARLONE]; Socialist Revolution Group or GRS [Philippe PIERRE-CHARLES]; Union for French Democracy or UDF [Jean MAREN]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Caribbean Revolutionary Alliance or ARC; Central Union for Martinique Workers or CSTM [Marc PULVAR]; Frantz Fanon Circle; League of Workers and Peasants; Proletarian Action Group or GAP
International organization participation:
UPU, WCL, WFTU
Diplomatic representation in the US:
none (overseas department of France)
Diplomatic representation from the US:
none (overseas department of France)
Flag description:
unofficial flag, derives from the civil ensign flown by French merchant ships and dates to 1766; a blue field quartered by a white cross; in the center of each rectangle is a white, coiled snake representing the venomous Fer-de-lance; the flag of France is used for official occasions
Economy Martinique
Economy - overview:
The economy is based on sugarcane, bananas, tourism, and light industry. Agriculture accounts for about 6% of GDP and the small industrial sector for 11%. Sugar production has declined, with most of the sugarcane now used for the production of rum. Banana exports are increasing, going mostly to France. The bulk of meat, vegetable, and grain requirements must be imported, contributing to a chronic trade deficit that requires large annual transfers of aid from France. Tourism, which employs more than 11,000 people, has become more important than agricultural exports as a source of foreign exchange.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$6.117 billion (2003 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate):
NA
GDP - real growth rate:
NA%
GDP - per capita (PPP):
$14,400 (2003 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 6%
industry: 11%
services: 83% (1997 est.)
Labor force:
165,900 (1998)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 10%
industry: 17%
services: 73% (1997)
Unemployment rate:
27.2% (1998)
Population below poverty line:
NA%
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
3.9% (1990)
Budget:
revenues: $317.5 million
expenditures: $317.5 million; including capital expenditures of $140 million (1996)
Agriculture - products:
pineapples, avocados, bananas, flowers, vegetables, sugarcane
Industries:
construction, rum, cement, oil refining, sugar, tourism
Industrial production growth rate:
NA%
Electricity - production:
1.205 billion kWh (2003)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 100%
hydro: 0%
nuclear: 0%
other: 0% (2001)
Electricity - consumption:
1.12 billion kWh (2003)
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2003)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2003)
Oil - production:
0 bbl/day (2003 est.)
Oil - consumption:
13,800 bbl/day (2003 est.)
Oil - exports:
NA bbl/day
Oil - imports:
NA bbl/day
Natural gas - production:
0 cu m (2003 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
0 cu m (2003 est.)
Exports:
$404.2 million f.o.b. (1997)
Exports - commodities:
refined petroleum products, bananas, rum, pineapples
Exports - partners:
France 45%, Guadeloupe 28% (2004)
Imports:
$2.307 billion c.i.f. (2002)
Imports - commodities:
petroleum products, crude oil, foodstuffs, construction materials, vehicles, clothing and other consumer goods
Imports - partners:
France 62%, Venezuela 6%, Germany 4%, Italy 4%, US 3% (2004)
Debt - external:
$180 million (1994)
Economic aid - recipient:
$NA; note - substantial annual aid from France (1998)
Currency (code):
euro (EUR)
Currency code:
EUR
Exchange rates:
euros per US dollar - 0.8041 (2005), 0.8054 (2004), 0.886 (2003), 1.0626 (2002), 1.1175 (2001)
Fiscal year:
calendar year
Communications Martinique
Telephones - main lines in use:
172,000 (2001)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
319,900 (2002)
Telephone system:
general assessment: domestic facilities are adequate
domestic: NA
international: country code - 596; microwave radio relay to Guadeloupe, Dominica, and Saint Lucia; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)
Radio broadcast stations:
AM 0, FM 14, shortwave 0 (1998)
Radios:
82,000 (1997)
Television broadcast stations:
11 (plus nine repeaters) (1997)
Televisions:
66,000 (1997)
Internet country code:
.mq
Internet hosts:
70 (2005)
Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
2 (2000)
Internet users:
107,000 (2005)
Transportation Martinique
Airports:
2 (2006)
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 1
over 3,047 m: 1 (2006)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 1
under 914 m: 1 (2006)
Roadways:
total: 2,105 km (including 261 km of expressways) (2000)
Ports and terminals:
Fort-de-France, La Trinite, Marin
Military Martinique
Military branches:
no regular military forces; Gendarmerie
Manpower available for military service:
males age 18-49: 110,536 (2005 est.)
Manpower fit for military service:
males age 18-49: 90,868 (2005 est.)
Manpower reaching military service age annually:
males age 18-49: 3,105 (2005 est.)
Military - note:
defense is the responsibility of France
Transnational Issues Martinique
Disputes - international:
none
Illicit drugs:
transshipment point for cocaine and marijuana bound for the US and Europe

This page was last updated on 19 September, 2006