(territory of the US)
[Country Flag of Guam]
Transnational Issues
[Country map of Guam]



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Location: Oceania, island in the North Pacific Ocean, about three-quarters of the way from Hawaii to the Philippines

Geographic coordinates: 13 28 N, 144 47 E

Map references: Oceania

total: 541.3 sq km
land: 541.3 sq km
water: 0 sq km

Area—comparative: three times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 125.5 km

Maritime claims:
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: tropical marine; generally warm and humid, moderated by northeast trade winds; dry season from January to June, rainy season from July to December; little seasonal temperature variation

Terrain: volcanic origin, surrounded by coral reefs; relatively flat coralline limestone plateau (source of most fresh water) with steep coastal cliffs and narrow coastal plains in north, low-rising hills in center, mountains in south

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
highest point: Mount Lamlam 406 m

Natural resources: fishing (largely undeveloped), tourism (especially from Japan)

Land use:
arable land: 11%
permanent crops: 11%
permanent pastures: 15%
forests and woodland: 18%
other: 45% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: frequent squalls during rainy season; relatively rare, but potentially very destructive typhoons (especially in August)

Environment—current issues: NA

Environment—international agreements:
party to: NA
signed, but not ratified: NA

Geography—note: largest and southernmost island in the Mariana Islands archipelago; strategic location in western North Pacific Ocean


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Population: 148,060 (July 1998 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 34% (male 25,972; female 24,097)
15-64 years: 60% (male 47,357; female 42,189)
65 years and over: 6% (male 4,244; female 4,201) (July 1998 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.5% (1998 est.)

Birth rate: 25.04 births/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Death rate: 4.42 deaths/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Net migration rate: -5.59 migrant(s)/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.07 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.12 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 1.01 male(s)/female (1998 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 8.28 deaths/1,000 live births (1998 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 76.7 years
male: 74.12 years
female: 79.44 years (1998 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3.58 children born/woman (1998 est.)

noun: Guamanian(s)
adjective: Guamanian

Ethnic groups: Chamorro 47%, Filipino 25%, white 10%, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and other 18%

Religions: Roman Catholic 98%, other 2%

Languages: English, Chamorro, Japanese

definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 99%
male: 99%
female: 99% (1990 est.)


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Country name:
conventional long form: Territory of Guam
conventional short form: Guam

Data code: GQ

Dependency status: organized, unincorporated territory of the US with policy relations between Guam and the US under the jurisdiction of the Office of Insular Affairs, US Department of the Interior

Government type: NA

National capital: Hagatna (Agana)

Administrative divisions: none (territory of the US)

Independence: none (territory of the US)

National holiday: Guam Discovery Day (first Monday in March) (1521); Liberation Day, 21 July (1944)

Constitution: Organic Act of 1 August 1950

Legal system: modeled on US; US federal laws apply

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal; US citizens, but do not vote in US presidential elections

Executive branch:
chief of state: President of the US William Jefferson CLINTON (since 20 January 1993); Vice President Albert GORE, Jr. (since 20 January 1993)
head of government: Governor Carl GUTIERREZ (since 8 November 1994) and Lieutenant Governor Madeleine BORDALLO (since 8 November 1994)
cabinet: executive departments; heads appointed by the governor with the consent of the Guam legislature
elections: governor and lieutenant governor elected on the same ticket by popular vote and serve four-year terms; election last held 8 November 1994 (next to be held NA November 1998)
election results: Carl GUTIERREZ elected governor of Guam; percent of vote—Carl GUTIERREZ (Democrat) 54.6%, Tommy TANAKA (Republican) NA%

Legislative branch: unicameral Legislature (21 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve two-year terms)
elections: last held 5 November 1996 (next to be held NA November 1998)
election results: percent of vote by party—NA; seats by party—Republican 11, Democratic 10
note: Guam elects one delegate to the US House of Representatives; elections last held 5 November 1996 (next to be held NA November 1998); results—Robert UNDERWOOD was reelected as delegate; percent of vote by party—NA; seats by party—Democrat 1

Judicial branch: Federal District Court, judge is appointed by the president; Territorial Superior Court, judges appointed for eight-year terms by the governor

Political parties and leaders: Republican Party (controls the legislature); Democratic Party (party of the Governor)

International organization participation: ESCAP (associate), IOC, SPC

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (territory of the US)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (territory of the US)

Flag description: territorial flag is dark blue with a narrow red border on all four sides; centered is a red-bordered, pointed, vertical ellipse containing a beach scene, outrigger canoe with sail, and a palm tree with the word GUAM superimposed in bold red letters; US flag is the national flag


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Economy—overview: The economy depends mainly on US military spending and on revenue generated by the tourism industry. Over the past 20 years, the tourist industry has grown rapidly, creating a construction boom for new hotels and the expansion of older ones. More than one million tourists visit Guam each year. Most food and industrial goods are imported, with about 75% from the US. Guam faces the problem of building up the civilian economic sector to offset the impact of military downsizing.

GDP: purchasing power parity—$3 billion (1996 est.)

GDP—real growth rate: NA%

GDP—per capita: purchasing power parity—$19,000 (1996 est.)

GDP—composition by sector:
agriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%

Inflation rate—consumer price index: 4% (1992 est.)

Labor force:
total: 65,660 (1995)
by occupation: federal and territorial government 31%, private 69% (trade 21%, services 33%, construction 12%, other 3%) (1995)

Unemployment rate: 2% (1992 est.)

revenues: $524.3 million
expenditures: $361.4 million, including capital expenditures of $NA (1995)

Industries: US military, tourism, construction, transshipment services, concrete products, printing and publishing, food processing, textiles

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity—capacity: 302,000 kW (1995)

Electricity—production: 755 million kWh (1995)

Electricity—consumption per capita: 4,925 kWh (1995)

Agriculture—products: fruits, copra, vegetables; eggs, pork, poultry, beef

total value: $86.1 million (f.o.b., 1992)
commodities: mostly transshipments of refined petroleum products, construction materials, fish, food and beverage products
partners: US 25%, former Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands 63%, other 12%

total value: $202.4 million (c.i.f., 1992)
commodities: petroleum and petroleum products, food, manufactured goods
partners: US 23%, Japan 19%, other 58%

Debt—external: $NA

Economic aid:
recipient: although Guam receives no foreign aid, it does receive large transfer payments from the general revenues of the US Federal Treasury into which Guamanians pay no income or excise taxes; under the provisions of a special law of Congress, the Guamanian Treasury, rather than the US Treasury, receives federal income taxes paid by military and civilian Federal employees stationed in Guam

Currency: 1 United States dollar (US$) = 100 cents

Exchange rates: US currency is used

Fiscal year: 1 October—30 September


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Telephones: 74,317 (March 1997)

Telephone system:
domestic: NA
international: satellite earth stations—2 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean); submarine cables to US and Japan

Radio broadcast stations: AM 3, FM 3, shortwave 0

Radios: 206,000 (1994)

Television broadcast stations: 3

Televisions: 97,000 (1994 est.)


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Railways: 0 km

total: 885 km
paved: 675 km
unpaved: 210 km
note: there is another 685 km of roads classified non-public, including roads located on federal government installations

Ports and harbors: Apra Harbor

Merchant marine: none

Airports: 5 (1997 est.)

Airports—with paved runways:
total: 4
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (1997 est.)

Airports—with unpaved runways:
total: 1
under 914 m: 1 (1997 est.)


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Military—note: defense is the responsibility of the US

Transnational Issues

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Disputes—international: none