About Guatemala

Guatemala (long form) Republic of Guatemala

Population:  14,655,200

Capital:  Guatemala City 973,049

Currency: Quetzal

Languages: Spanish, Amerindian

Religion: Catholic, Protestant, Mayan beliefs

Climate: The tropical country of Guatemala is consistently warm ( often quite pleasant ) with very pronounced wet and dry seasons.

Typical of a mountainous country, high and low temperatures within vary quite substantially based on elevation. In general terms the interior plains and coastal lowlands in Guatemala reach average daily highs near 80 °F, with little seasonal change; the lower mountain valley temperatures are in the 65 °F range, while the upper elevations average nears 40 °F.

As for precipitation, Guatemala’s rainy season runs ( May to early December ), with the greatest amount of rain falling in the plains of the northern Paten region; there, 125 inches of yearly precipitation, or more, are quite common. The eastern highlands of the Sierra Madre Mountains receive the least amount of rainfall arrow

Literacy: male 78%; female: 63.3% (2003 est.)

The Economy:

Guatemala is the largest and most populous of the Central American countries with a GDP per capita roughly one-half that of Brazil, Argentina, and Chile. The agricultural sector accounts for about one-fourth of GDP, two-thirds of exports, and half of the labor force. Coffee, sugar, and bananas are the main products. The 1996 signing of peace accords, which ended 36 years of civil war, removed a major obstacle to foreign investment, but widespread political violence and corruption scandals continue to dampen investor confidence. The distribution of income remains highly unequal, with perhaps 75% of the population below the poverty line. Ongoing challenges include increasing government revenues, negotiating further assistance from international donors, upgrading both government and private financial operations, curtailing drug trafficking, and narrowing the trade deficit.

Population below poverty line: 75% (2002 est.

Agriculture products: sugarcane, corn, bananas, coffee, beans, cardamom; cattle, sheep, pigs, chickens
Industries: sugar, textiles and clothing, furniture, chemicals, petroleum, metals, rubber, tourism
Exports commodities : coffee, sugar, bananas, fruits and vegetables, cardamom, meat, apparel, petroleum, electricity
Export partners: US 56.7%, El Salvador 10.8%, Nicaragua 3.6% (2003)
Imports commodities: fuels, machinery and transport equipment, construction materials, grain, fertilizers, electricity

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