WOW-#213 Country to visit my blog is Cuba Population: 11,061,886

  Just really surprised to see a visitor from Cuba…happy surprise! 
The native Amerindian population of Cuba began to decline after the European discovery of the island by Christopher COLUMBUS in 1492 and following its development as a Spanish colony during the next several centuries. Large numbers of African slaves were imported to work the coffee and sugar plantations, and Havana became the launching point for the annual treasure fleets bound for Spain from Mexico and Peru. Spanish rule eventually provoked an independence movement and occasional rebellions that were harshly suppressed. US intervention during the Spanish-American War in 1898 assisted the Cubans in overthrowing Spanish rule. The Treaty of Paris established Cuban independence from the US in 1902 after which the island experienced a string of governments mostly dominated by the military and corrupt politicians. Fidel CASTRO led a rebel army to victory in 1959; his iron rule held the subsequent regime together for nearly five decades. He stepped down as president in February 2008 in favor of his younger brother Raul CASTRO. Cuba’s communist revolution, with Soviet support, was exported throughout Latin America and Africa during the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. The country faced a severe economic downturn in 1990 following the withdrawal of former Soviet subsidies worth $4 billion to $6 billion annually. Cuba at times portrays the US embargo, in place since 1961, as the source if its difficulties. Illicit migration to the US – using homemade rafts, alien smugglers, air flights, or via the US’s southwest border – is a continuing problem. The US Coast Guard interdicted 1,275 Cuban nationals attempting to cross the Straits of Florida in 2012.

Largest country in Caribbean and westernmost island of the Greater Antilles
Location: Caribbean, island between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, 150 km south of Key West, Florida
Geographic coordinates: 21 30 N, 80 00 W
Area: total: 110,860 sq km
land: 109,820 sq km
water: 1,040 sq km

Size comparison: slightly smaller than Pennsylvania

Land Boundaries: total: 29 km
border countries: US Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay 29 km note: Guantanamo Naval Base is leased by the US and remains part of Cuba
Coastline: 3,735 km
Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climate: tropical; moderated by trade winds; dry season (November to April); rainy season (May to October)
Terrain: mostly flat to rolling plains, with rugged hills and mountains in the southeast
Elevation extremes: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
highest point: Pico Turquino 2,005 m
Natural resources: cobalt, nickel, iron ore, chromium, copper, salt, timber, silica, petroleum, arable land
Land use: arable land: 32.31%
permanent crops: 3.55%
other: 64.15% (2011)
Irrigated land: 8,703 sq km (2003)
Natural hazards: the east coast is subject to hurricanes from August to November (in general, the country averages about one hurricane every other year); droughts are common
Current Environment Issues: air and water pollution; biodiversity loss; deforestation
International Environment Agreements: party 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
signed, but not ratified: Marine Life Conservation
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Nationality: noun: Cuban(s)
adjective: Cuban
Ethnic groups: white 65.1%, mulatto and mestizo 24.8%, black 10.1% (2002 census)
Languages: Spanish (official)
Religions: nominally Roman Catholic 85%, Protestant, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Jewish, Santeria

note: prior to CASTRO assuming power

Population: 11,061,886 (July 2013 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 16.6% (male 944,254/female 892,766)
15-24 years: 13.9% (male 787,368/female 748,315)
25-54 years: 46.9% (male 2,611,371/female 2,578,471)
55-64 years: 10.3% (male 544,465/female 595,856)
65 years and over: 12.3% (male 611,086/female 747,934) (2013 est.)
Dependency ratios: total dependency ratio: 41.9 %
youth dependency ratio: 23 %
elderly dependency ratio: 18.9 %
potential support ratio: 5.3 (2013)
Median age: total: 39.5 years
male: 38.6 years
female: 40.3 years (2013 est.)
Population growth rate: -0.13% (2013 est.)
Birth rate: 9.92 births/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Death rate: 7.58 deaths/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Net migration rate: -3.61 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Urbanization: urban population: 75% of total population (2010)
rate of urbanization: 0% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Major urban areas – population: HAVANA (capital) 2.116 million (2011)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.91 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.82 male(s)/female
total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2013 est.)
Maternal mortality rate: 73 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)
Infant mortality rate: total: 4.76 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 5.12 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 4.39 deaths/1,000 live births (2013 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 78.05 years
male: 75.77 years
female: 80.46 years (2013 est.)
Total fertility rate: 1.46 children born/woman (2013 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate: 74.3% (2011)
Health expenditures: 10.6% of GDP (2010)
Physicians density: 6.4 physicians/1,000 population (2007)
Hospital bed density: 5.9 beds/1,000 population (2010)
Drinking water source: improved:
urban: 96% of population
rural: 89% of population
total: 94% of population

urban: 4% of population
rural: 11% of population
total: 6% of population (2010 est.)

Sanitation facility access: improved:
urban: 94% of population
rural: 81% of population
total: 91% of population

urban: 6% of population
rural: 19% of population
total: 9% of population (2010 est.)

HIV/AIDS – adult prevalence rate: 0.1% (2009 est.)
HIV/AIDS – people living with HIV/AIDS: 7,100 (2009 est.)
HIV/AIDS – deaths: fewer than 100 (2009 est.)
Obesity – adult prevalence rate: 21.5% (2008)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight: 3.4% (2000)
Education expenditures: 12.9% of GDP (2010)
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 99.8%
male: 99.8%
female: 99.8% (2011 est.)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education): total: 15 years
male: 15 years
female: 16 years (2011)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24: total: 3.1%
male: 2.8%
female: 3.5% (2008)
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Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Cuba
conventional short form: Cuba
local long form: Republica de Cuba
local short form: Cuba
Government type: Communist state
Capital: name: Havana
geographic coordinates: 23 07 N, 82 21 W
time difference: UTC-5 (same time as Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins second Sunday in March; ends first Sunday in November; note – Cuba has been known to alter the schedule of DST on short notice in an attempt to conserve electricity for lighting
Administrative divisions: 15 provinces (provincias, singular – provincia) and 1 special municipality* (municipio especial); Artemisa, Camaguey, Ciego de Avila, Cienfuegos, Granma, Guantanamo, Holguin, Isla de la Juventud*, La Habana, Las Tunas, Matanzas, Mayabeque, Pinar del Rio, Sancti Spiritus, Santiago de Cuba, Villa Clara
Independence: 20 May 1902 (from Spain 10 December 1898; administered by the US from 1898 to 1902); not acknowledged by the Cuban Government as a day of independence
National holiday: Triumph of the Revolution, 1 January (1959)
Constitution: 24 February 1976; amended July 1992 and June 2002
Legal system: civil law system based on Spanish civil code
Suffrage: 16 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state: President of the Council of State and President of the Council of Ministers Gen. Raul CASTRO Ruz (president since 24 February 2008); First Vice President of the Council of State and First Vice President of the Council of Ministers Miguel DIAZ-CANEL Bermudez (since 24 February 2013); note – the president is both the chief of state and head of government

head of government: President of the Council of State and President of the Council of Ministers Gen. Raul CASTRO Ruz (president since 24 February 2008); First Vice President of the Council of State and First Vice President of the Council of Ministers Miguel DIAZ-CANEL Bermudez (since 24 February 2013)

cabinet: Council of Ministers proposed by the president of the Council of State and appointed by the National Assembly or the 28-member Council of State, elected by the assembly to act on its behalf when it is not in session (For more information visit the World Leaders website )

elections: president and vice presidents elected by the National Assembly for a five-year term; election last held on 24 February 2013 (next to be held in 2018)

election results: Gen. Raul CASTRO Ruz reelected president; percent of legislative vote – 100%; Miguel DIAZ-CANEL Bermudez elected vice president; percent of legislative vote – 100%

Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly of People’s Power or Asemblea Nacional del Poder Popular (number of seats in the National Assembly is based on population; 614 seats; members elected directly from slates approved by special candidacy commissions to serve five-year terms)

elections: last held on 3 February 2013 (next to be held in 2018)

election results: Cuba’s Communist Party is the only legal party, and officially sanctioned candidates run unopposed

Judicial branch: highest court(s): People’s Supreme Court (consists of court president, vice president, 41 professional justices, and NA lay judges; organized into the “Whole,” State Council, and criminal, civil, administrative, labor, crimes against the state, and military courts) judge selection and term of office: professional judges elected by the National Assembly to serve 2.5-year terms; lay judges nominated by workplace collectives and neighborhood associations and elected by municipal or provincial assemblies; lay judges appointed for 5-year terms and serve up to 30 days per year

subordinate courts: People’s Provincial Courts; People’s Regional Courts; People’s Courts

Political parties and leaders: Cuban Communist Party or PCC [Raul CASTRO Ruz, first secretary]
Political pressure groups and leaders: Human Rights Watch National Association of Small Farmers
International organization participation: ACP, ALBA, AOSIS, CELAC, FAO, G-77, IAEA, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IFAD, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, LAES, LAIA, NAM, OAS (excluded from formal participation since 1962), OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, Petrocaribe, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, Union Latina, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
National anthem: name: “La Bayamesa” (The Bayamo Song)
lyrics/music: Pedro FIGUEREDO

note: adopted 1940; Pedro FIGUEREDO first performed “La Bayamesa” in 1868 during the Ten Years War against the Spanish; a leading figure in the uprising, FIGUEREDO was captured in 1870 and executed by a firing squad; just prior to the fusillade he is reputed to have shouted, “Morir por la Patria es vivir” (To die for the country is to live), a line from the anthem

Diplomatic representation in the US: none; note – Cuba has an Interests Section in the Swiss Embassy, headed by Principal Officer Jorge BOLANOS Suarez; address: Cuban Interests Section, Swiss Embassy, 2630 16th Street NW, Washington, DC 20009;
telephone: [1] (202) 797-8518;
FAX: [1] (202) 797-8521
Diplomatic representation from the US: none; note – the US has an Interests Section in the Swiss Embassy, headed by Chief of Mission John P. CAULFIELD; address: USINT, Swiss Embassy, Calzada between L and M Streets, Vedado, Havana;
telephone: [53] (7) 839-4100;
FAX: [53] (7) 839-4247; protecting power in Cuba is Switzerland
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The government continues to balance the need for loosening its socialist economic system against a desire for firm political control. The government in April 2011 held the first Cuban Communist Party Congress in almost 13 years, during which leaders approved a plan for wide-ranging economic changes. President Raul CASTRO said such changes were needed to update the economic model to ensure the survival of socialism. The government has expanded opportunities for self-employment and has introduced limited reforms, some initially implemented in the 1990s, to increase enterprise efficiency and alleviate serious shortages of food, consumer goods, services, and housing. The average Cuban’s standard of living remains at a lower level than before the downturn of the 1990s, which was caused by the loss of Soviet aid and domestic inefficiencies. Since late 2000, Venezuela has been providing oil on preferential terms, and it currently supplies over 100,000 barrels per day of petroleum products. Cuba has been paying for the oil, in part, with the services of Cuban personnel in Venezuela including some 30,000 medical professionals.
GDP (purchasing power parity): GDP (purchasing power parity): $121 billion (2012 est.) $117.3 billion (2011 est.) $114.1 billion (2010 est.)

note: data are in 2012 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate): GDP (official exchange rate): $72.3 billion (2012 est.)
GDP – real growth rate: 3.1% (2012 est.) 2.8% (2011 est.) 2.4% (2010 est.)
GDP – per capita (PPP): GDP – per capita (PPP): $10,200 (2010 est.) $10,000 (2009 est.) $10,000 (2008 est.)

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

Gross national saving: 11.1% of GDP (2012 est.) 11.7% of GDP (2011 est.) 14.9% of GDP (2010 est.)
GDP – composition, by end use: household consumption: 53.5%
government consumption: 35.4%
investment in fixed capital: 9.6%
investment in inventories: -2.2%
exports of goods and services: 24.6%
imports of goods and services: -20.9% (2012 est.)
GDP – composition, by sector of origin: household consumption: 53.5%
government consumption: 35.4%
investment in fixed capital: 9.6%
investment in inventories: -2.2%
exports of goods and services: 24.6%
imports of goods and services: -20.9% (2012 est.)
Agriculture – products: sugar, tobacco, citrus, coffee, rice, potatoes, beans; livestock
Industries: petroleum, nickel/cobalt, pharmaceuticals, tobacco, construction, steel, cement, agricultural machinery, sugar
Industrial production growth rate: 6.2% (2012 est.)
Labor force: 5.18 million note: state sector 72.3%, non-state sector 27.7% (2012 est.)
Labor force – by occupation: agriculture: 19.7%
industry: 17.1%
services: 63.2% (2011)
Unemployment rate: 3.8% (2012 est.) 3.2% (2011 est.) note: these are official rates; unofficial estimates are about double the official figures
Population below poverty line: NA%
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Budget: revenues: $47.78 billion
expenditures: $50.45 billion (2012 est.)
Taxes and other revenues: 66.1% of GDP (2012 est.)
Public debt: 35.3% of GDP (2012 est.) 36% of GDP (2011 est.)
Fiscal year: calendar year
Inflation rate (consumer prices): Inflation rate (consumer prices): 5.5% (2012 est.) 4.8% (2011 est.)
Current account balance: $1 billion (2011 est.) $1.4 billion (2010 est.)
Exports: $5.972 billion (2012 est.) $6.34 billion (2011 est.)
Exports – commodities: petroleum, nickel, medical products, sugar, tobacco, fish, citrus, coffee
Exports – partners: Canada 17.3%, China 16.6%, Venezuela 12.7%, Netherlands 8.8%, Spain 5.8% (2012)
Imports: $13.72 billion (2012 est.) $14.02 billion (2011 est.)
Imports – commodities: petroleum, food, machinery and equipment, chemicals
Imports – partners: Venezuela 36.4%, China 10.5%, Spain 8.7%, Brazil 5.1%, US 4.2% (2012)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $4.693 billion (31 December 2012 est.) $4.393 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
Debt – external: $22.51 billion (31 December 2012 est.) $21.88 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment – at home: $NA
Stock of direct foreign investment – abroad: $4.138 billion (2006 est.)
Exchange rates: Cuban pesos (CUP) per US dollar – 1 (2012 est.) 0.9847 (2011 est.) 0.9259 (2010 est.) 0.9259 (2009) 0.9259 (2008)
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Electricity – production: 17.8 billion kWh (2011 est.) country comparison to the world: 76
Electricity – consumption: 16.38 billion kWh (2011 est.)
Electricity – exports: 0 kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity – imports: 0 kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity – installed generating capacity: 5.914 million kW (2011 est.)
Electricity – from fossil fuels: 99.3% of total installed capacity (2011 est.)
Electricity – from nuclear fuels: 0% of total installed capacity (2011 est.)
Electricity – from hydroelectric plants: 0.6% of total installed capacity (2011 est.)
Electricity – from other renewable sources: 0.1% of total installed capacity (2011 est.)
Crude oil – production: 53,000 bbl/day (2012 est.)
Crude oil – exports: 83,000 bbl/day (2012 est.)
Crude oil – imports: 165,000 bbl/day (2012 est.)
Crude oil – proved reserves: 181.5 million bbl (1 January 2013 est.)
Refined petroleum products – production: 104,200 bbl/day (2010 est.)
Refined petroleum products – consumption: 150,200 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Refined petroleum products – exports: 0 bbl/day (2012 est.)
Refined petroleum products – imports: 73,000 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Natural gas – production: 1.03 billion cu m (2012 est.)
Natural gas – consumption: 1.03 billion cu m (2012 est.)
Natural gas – exports: 0 cu m (2012 est.)
Natural gas – imports: 0 cu m (2012 est.)
Natural gas – proved reserves: 70.79 billion cu m (1 January 2012 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy: 34.46 million Mt (2010 est.)
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Telephones in use: 1.193 million (2011)
country comparison to the world: 70
Cellular Phones in use: 1.315 million (2011)
Telephone system: general assessment: greater investment beginning in 1994 and the establishment of a new Ministry of Information Technology and Communications in 2000 has resulted in improvements in the system; national fiber-optic system under development; 95% of switches digitized by end of 2006; mobile-cellular telephone service is expensive and must be paid in convertible pesos, which effectively limits subscribership

domestic: fixed-line density remains low at 10 per 100 inhabitants; mobile-cellular service expanding but remains only about 10 per 100 persons

international: country code – 53; fiber-optic cable laid to but not linked to US network; satellite earth station – 1 Intersputnik (Atlantic Ocean region) (2010)

Broadcast media: government owns and controls all broadcast media with private ownership of electronic media prohibited; government operates 4 national TV networks and many local TV stations; government operates 6 national radio networks, an international station, and many local radio stations; Radio-TV Marti is beamed from the US (2007)
Internet country code: .cu
Internet hosts: 3,244 (2012)
Internet users: 1.606 million note: private citizens are prohibited from buying computers or accessing the Internet without special authorization; foreigners may access the Internet in large hotels but are subject to firewalls; some Cubans buy illegal passwords on the black market or take advantage of public outlets to access limited email and the government-controlled “intranet” (2009)
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Airports: 133 (2013)
country comparison to the world: 42
Airports (paved runways): total 64
over 3,047 m: 7
2,438 to 3,047 m: 10
1,524 to 2,437 m: 16
914 to 1,523 m: 4
under 914 m: 27 (2013)
Airports (unpaved runways): total 69

914 to 1,523 m: 11
under 914 m: 58 (2013)

Pipelines: gas 41 km; oil 230 km (2013)
Railways: total 8,203 km
standard gauge: 8,134 km 1.435-m gauge (124 km electrified)
narrow gauge: 69 km 1.000-m gauge

note: 48 km of standard gauge track is not for public use (2011)

Roadways: total 60,858 km
paved: 29,820 km (includes 639 km of expressways)
unpaved: 31,038 km (2001)
Waterways: 240 km (almost all navigable inland waterways are near the mouths of rivers) (2011)
Merchant marine: total 3

by type: cargo 1, passenger 1, refrigerated cargo 1

registered in other countries: 5 (Curacao 1, Panama 2, unknown 2) (2010)

Ports and terminals: major seaport(s): Antilla, Cienfuegos, Guantanamo, Havana, Matanzas, Mariel, Nuevitas Bay, Santiago de Cuba
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The collapse of the Soviet Union deprived the Cuban military of its major economic and logistic support and had a significant impact on the state of Cuban equipment; the army remains well trained and professional in nature; while the lack of replacement parts for its existing equipment has increasingly affected operational capabilities, Cuba remains able to offer considerable resistance to any regional power (2010)
Military branches: Revolutionary Armed Forces (Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias, FAR): Revolutionary Army (Ejercito Revolucionario, ER, includes Territorial Militia Troops (Milicia de Tropas de Territoriales, MTT)); Revolutionary Navy (Marina de Guerra Revolucionaria, MGR, includes Marine Corps); Revolutionary Air and Air Defense Forces (Defensas Anti-Aereas y Fuerza Aerea Revolucionaria, DAAFAR), Youth Labor Army (Ejercito Juvenil del Trabajo, EJT) (2011)
Military service age and obligation: 17-28 years of age for compulsory military service; 2-year service obligation; both sexes subject to military service (2012)
Manpower available for military service: males age 16-49: 2,998,201
females age 16-49: 2,919,107 (2010 est.)
Manpower fit for military service: males age 16-49: 2,446,131
females age 16-49: 2,375,590 (2010 est.)
Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually: male: 72,823
female: 69,108 (2010 est.)
Military expenditures: 3.2% of GDP (2011)
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 Transnational Issues
Disputes – International: US Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay is leased to US and only mutual agreement or US abandonment of the facility can terminate the lease
Illicit drugs: territorial waters and air space serve as transshipment zone for US- and European-bound drugs; established the death penalty for certain drug-related crimes in 1999 (2008)

Author: advgrrl

Avid ADV rider! This Blog is all about the adventure in adventure riding. Researching new bikes, routes, accessories, learning about other riders and hopefully a great place for others to comment and explore with me. PLUS, up and down's, wildlife, my dogs, my life!

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