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Nepal Facts

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Background: In 1951, the Nepalese monarch ended the century-old system of rule by hereditary premiers and instituted a cabinet system of government. Reforms in 1990 established a multiparty democracy within the framework of a constitutional monarchy. A Maoist insurgency, launched in 1996, has gained traction and is threatening to bring down the regime, especially after a negotiated cease-fire between the Maoists and government forces broke down in August 2003. In 2001, the crown prince massacred ten members of the royal family, including the king and queen, and then took his own life. In October 2002, the new king dismissed the prime minister and his cabinet for "incompetence" after they dissolved the parliament and were subsequently unable to hold elections because of the ongoing insurgency. While stopping short of reestablishing parliament, the king in June 2004 reinstated the most recently elected prime minister who formed a four-party coalition government. Citing dissatisfaction with the government's lack of progress in addressing the Maoist insurgency and corruption, the king in February 2005 dissolved the government, declared a state of emergency, imprisoned party leaders, and assumed power. The king's government subsequently released party leaders and officially ended the state of emergency in May 2005, but the monarch retained absolute power until April 2006. After nearly three weeks of mass protests organized by the seven-party opposition and the Maoists, the king allowed parliament to reconvene on 28 April 2006.
Common Name: Nepal Local Official Name: Nepal
Abbreviated Name: Nepal Official Name: Nepal
Official Script Name: Nepal Local Common Name: Nepal
Former Name: Nepal Territory of: NA
Head of State: King GYANENDRA Bir Bikram Shah
Government Type: parliamentary democracy and constitutional monarchy
Independence: 1768 (unified by Prithvi Narayan Shah)
Constitution: 1990 November 9
National Holiday: Birthday of King GYANENDRA, 7 July
Administrative Divisions: 14 zones (anchal, singular and plural); Bagmati, Bheri, Dhawalagiri, Gandaki, Janakpur, Karnali, Kosi, Lumbini, Mahakali, Mechi, Narayani, Rapti, Sagarmatha, Seti
Dependent Areas: NA
Legal System: based on Hindu legal concepts and English common law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Suffrage: 18 years
Executive, Legislative and Judicial Branches: Executive Branch: chief of state: King GYANENDRA Bir Bikram Shah (since 4 June 2001) head of government: Prime Minister Girija Prasad KOIRALA (since 30 April 2006); Deputy Prime Minister Khadga Prasad OLI (since 2 May 2006) cabinet: Cabinet historically appointed by the monarch on the recommendation of the prime minister; note - the prime minister selected the Cabinet in May 2006 in consultation with the political parties elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; note - following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or leader of a majority coalition historically has been appointed prime minister by the monarch Legislative Branch: bicameral Parliament consists of the National Council (60 seats; 35 appointed by the House of Representatives, 10 by the king, and 15 elected by an electoral college; one-third of the members elected every two years to serve six-year terms) and the House of Representatives (205 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) elections: House of Representatives - last held in May 1999; note - Parliament was dissolved in May 2002 but was finally reconvened in April 2006 with most of the members that were elected in 1999 election results: House of Representatives (for 1999 parliament) - percent of vote by party - NC 37.3%, CPN/UML 31.6%, NDP (RPP) 10.4%, NSP 3.2%, Rastriya Jana Morcha 1.4%, Samyukta Janmorcha Nepal 0.8%, NWPP 0.5%, others 14.8%; seats by party - NC 113, CPN/UML 69, NDP 11, NSP 5, Rastriya Jana Morcha 5, Samyukta Janmorcha Nepal 1, NWPP 1; note - NC, NSP, and NDP have since each split into two parties Judicial Branch: Supreme Court or Sarbochha Adalat (chief justice is appointed by the monarch on recommendation of the Constitutional Council; the other judges are appointed by the monarch on the recommendation of the Judicial Council)
Party Leaders: Communist Party of Nepal/United Marxist-Leninist or CPN/UML [Madhav Kumar NEPAL, general secretary]; National Democratic Party or NDP (also called Rastriya Prajantra Party or RPP) [Pashupati Shumsher RANA, chairman]; Nepali Congress-Democratic [Sher Bahadur DEUBA, president]; Nepali Congress or NC [Girija Prasad KOIRALA, party president, Sushil KOIRALA, vice president]; Nepal Sadbhavana (Goodwill) Party or NSP - Mandal [Bhadri Prasad MANDAL, party president]; Nepal Sadbhavana Party - Ananda Devi [Ananda DEVI, president]; Nepal Workers and Peasants Party or NWPP [Narayan Man BIJUKCHHE, party chairman]; People's Front Nepal (Rastriya Jana Morcha) [Amik SHERCHAN, chairman]; Rastriya Janashakti Party or RJP [Surya Bahadur THAPA, chairman]; note - split from RPP in March 2005; Samyukta Janmorcha Nepal [leader NA]; note - merged with People's Front Nepal or PFN in 2002
International Disputes: joint border commission continues to work on small disputed sections of boundary with India; India has instituted a stricter border regime to restrict transit of Maoist insurgents and illegal cross-border activities
Illicit Drugs: illicit producer of cannabis and hashish for the domestic and international drug markets; transit point for opiates from Southeast Asia to the West 
  Nepal Facts |  Nepal Information | Nepal Statistics  
Location of Nepal: Southern Asia, between China and India
Continent: Asia Land Area Total: 147,181 sq km 
Region: Central Asia Land Area Land: 147,181 sq km
Capitol City: Kathmandu Land Area Water: 4,000 sq km
Latitude: 028 00 N Border Boundary Land: 2,926 km
Longitude: 084 00 E Border Boundary Coastline: 0 km 
Arable Land: 16.07 % Pastures: 0.00 %
Crops: 0.85 % Woodlands and Forests: 0.00
Highest Elevation: 8,850 m Location: Mount Everest
Lowest Elevation: 70 m Location: Kanchan Kalan
Largest City in Nepal: Kathmandu Kathmandu Largest City Population: 669,000
Threatened Species: 68
Environmental Issues: deforestation (overuse of wood for fuel and lack of alternatives); contaminated water (with human and animal wastes, agricultural runoff, and industrial effluents); wildlife conservation; vehicular emissions
Environmental Agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Marine Life Conservation
Irrigated Land: 11,700
Bordering Countries: China 1,236 km, India 1,690 km
Natural Resources: quartz, water, timber, hydropower, scenic beauty, small deposits of lignite, copper, cobalt, iron ore
Geographical Terrain: Tarai or flat river plain of the Ganges in south, central hill region, rugged Himalayas in north
Comparative Area of Nepal: slightly larger than Arkansas
Nepal's Geography: landlocked; strategic location between China and India; contains eight of world's 10 highest peaks, including Mount Everest and Kanchenjunga - the world's tallest and third tallest - on the borders with China and India respectively

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General Climate: varies from cool summers and severe winters in north to subtropical summers and mild winters in south
Natural Hazards: severe thunderstorms, flooding, landslides, drought, and famine depending on the timing, intensity, and duration of the summer monsoons
  Nepal Facts |  Nepal Information | Nepal Statistics  
Economic Overview: Nepal is among the poorest and least developed countries in the world with almost one-third of its population living below the poverty line. Agriculture is the mainstay of the economy, providing a livelihood for three-fourths of the population and accounting for 38% of GDP. Industrial activity mainly involves the processing of agricultural produce including jute, sugarcane, tobacco, and grain. Security concerns relating to the Maoist conflict have led to a decrease in tourism, a key source of foreign exchange. Nepal has considerable scope for exploiting its potential in hydropower and tourism, areas of recent foreign investment interest. Prospects for foreign trade or investment in other sectors will remain poor, however, because of the small size of the economy, its technological backwardness, its remoteness, its landlocked geographic location, its civil strife, and its susceptibility to natural disaster.
GDP: $39,900,000,000 USD Currency: Nepalese rupee
GDP per Capita: $1,400 USD Currency Code: NPR
GDP Growth Rate: 2.70 %
Currency Exchange Rate History: Nepalese rupees per US dollar - 71.368 (2005), 73.674 (2004), 76.141 (2003), 77.877 (2002), 74.949 (2001)
GDP of Agriculture: 38.00 % GDP of Industry: 21.00 %
GDP of Services: 41.00 %  
Inflation Rate: 7.80 % Population in Poverty: 31.00 %
Unemployment Rate: 42.00 % Tourism: 492,000.00 visitors each year
Consumption by lowest 10%: 206.00 % Budget Revenue in USD: $1,153,000,000 USD
Consumption by upper 10%: 39.10 % Budget Expenditures in USD: $1,789,000,000 USD
Electricity Production: 2,565,000,000 kWh Electricity Exports: 111,000,000 kWh
Electricity Consumption: 1,850,000,000 kWh Electricity Imports: 241,000,000 kWh

Electricity Production by Source:
Fossil Fuel Electricity Production: 9.56% Nuclear Electricity Production: 0.00%
Hydro Electricity Production: 90.44% Other Electricity Production: 0.00%
Oil Production: 11,980 barrels per day Natural Gas Production: 0 cu m
Oil Consumption: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Consumption: 0 cu m
Oil Exports: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Exports: 0 cu m
Oil Imports: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Imports: 0 cu m
Proven Oil Reserves: 0 barrels Proven Natural Gas Reserves: 0 cu m
External Debt: $3,340,000,000 USD Received in economic aid: $424,000,000 USD
  Donated in economic aid: $0 USD
Agricultural Products: rice, corn, wheat, sugarcane, root crops; milk, water buffalo meat
Primary Industries: tourism, carpet, textile; small rice, jute, sugar, and oilseed mills; cigarettes, cement and brick production
Industrial Growth Rate: 3.80 %
Import Amount in USD: $2,000,000,000 USD - gold, machinery and equipment, petroleum products, fertilizer
Import Partners: India 47.5%, UAE 11.2%, China 10.7%, Saudi Arabia 4.9%, Kuwait 4.1%
Export Amount in USD: $822,000,000 USD - carpets, clothing, leather goods, jute goods, grain
Export Partners: India 53.7%, US 17.4%, Germany 7.1%
GINI Index: 37.70%
Labor Force Number of People: 10,400,000
Labor Force by Occupations: agriculture 76%, services 18%, industry 6%
  Nepal Facts |  Nepal Information | Nepal Statistics  
Radio Broadcast Stations: 12 Number of People with Radios: 840,000
Television Broadcast Stations: 1 Number of People with Televisions: 130,000
Number of People with Mainline Telephones: 417,900 Number of People with Mobile Phones: 116,800
Internet Service Providers: 7,846 Internet Users: 175,000
Internet Country Code: .np Newspapers: 11
Two Letter Country Code: NP Weights and Measures:
Phone Country Code: 997 Electricity Voltage: Volts
Telephone Systems: General assessment: poor telephone and telegraph service; fair radiotelephone communication service and mobile cellular telephone network Domestic: NA International: country code - 977; radiotelephone communications; microwave landline to India; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean)
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Highways: 8,573 km Railways: 59 km
Gas And Oil Pipelines: 0 km Waterways: 0 km
Airports: 38 Heliports: 0
Motor Vehicles: 10 per 1,000 people CO2 Emissions: 2,026,000 Metric Tons of CO2 per year
  Per capita CO2 emissions: 0.10 Metric Tons of CO2 per year
Merchant Marines: NA
Ports and Harbors: NA
  Nepal Facts |  Nepal Information | Nepal Statistics  
Population: 28,287,147 people type - nationality Birth Rate: 30.98 births per 1,000 people
Population Density: 179.00 people per sq km Death Rate: 9.31 deaths per 1,000 people
Population Growth: 2.17% per year Fertility Rate per Women: 4.10 babies born per woman
Population Male 0-14: 5,648,959 Population Female 0-14: 5,291,447
Population Male 15-64: 8,365,526 Population Female 15-64: 7,925,941
Population Male 65+: 513,777 Population Female 65+: 541,497
Population 0-14: 38.70% Literacy Rate: 48.60%
Population 15-64: 57.60% Literacy rate of Males: 62.70%
Population 65+: 3.70% Literacy rate of Females: 34.90%
Population that is Male: 53.00 % Population that is Female: 47.00%
Life expectancy at birth in years: 60.18 years Infant mortality rate - baby deaths per 1000 births: 65.32 Babies die per 1,000 births
Life expectancy at birth for Males: 60.43 years Life expectancy at birth for Females: 59.91 years
Rate of AIDS/HIV infection: 0.50% Number of people living with AIDS or HIV: 61,000
Number of people who died of AIDS: 3,100
Disease Risk:
Net Migration Rate per 1,000 people: 0.00
Nationality: NEPALESE
Ethnic Groups: Chhettri 15.5%, Brahman-Hill 12.5%, Magar 7%, Tharu 6.6%, Tamang 5.5%, Newar 5.4%, Muslim 4.2%, Kami 3.9%, Yadav 3.9%, other 32.7%, unspecified 2.8% 
Primary Language: Nepali
Other Languages: Nepali 47.8%, Maithali 12.1%, Bhojpuri 7.4%, Tharu (Dagaura/Rana) 5.8%, Tamang 5.1%, Newar 3.6%, Magar 3.3%, Awadhi 2.4%, other 10%, unspecified 2.5% note: many in government and business also speak English
Primary Religion: Hindu
Other Religions: Hindu 86.2%, Buddhism 7.8%, Islam 3.8%, other 2.2% note: only official Hindu state in the world
  Nepal Facts |  Nepal Information | Nepal Statistics  
Branches: Royal Nepalese Army (includes Royal Nepalese Army Air Service); Nepalese Police Force
Manpower Fit to Serve: 18 years
Manpower Available: 11,852,080 People
Manpower Fit to Serve: 8,046,102 People
Amount of Manpower Available each Year: 594,635 People per year
Expenditures: $104,900,000 USD per year
Expenditures as a Percentage of GDP: 1.50
Note: Phrasebase uses a variety of sources when compiling the facts and information presented above. This information is continually updated throughout the year.
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