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  Introduction Back To Top

The lands that today comprise Croatia were part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire until the close of World War I. In 1918, the Croats, Serbs, and Slovenes formed a kingdom known after 1929 as Yugoslavia. Following World War II, Yugoslavia became a federal independent Communist state under the strong hand of Marshal TITO. Although Croatia declared its independence from Yugoslavia in 1991, it took four years of sporadic, but often bitter, fighting before occupying Serb armies were mostly cleared from Croatian lands. Under UN supervision, the last Serb-held enclave in eastern Slavonia was returned to Croatia in 1998.

  Geography Back To Top

Total renewable water resources:
105.5 cu km (1998)

Land boundaries:
total: 1,982 km
border countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina 932 km, Hungary 329 km, Serbia 241 km, Montenegro 25 km, Slovenia 455 km

Environment - international agreements:
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants

Mediterranean and continental; continental climate predominant with hot summers and cold winters; mild winters, dry summers along coast

Map references:

Geographic coordinates:
45 10 N, 15 30 E

Natural resources:
oil, some coal, bauxite, low-grade iron ore, calcium, gypsum, natural asphalt, silica, mica, clays, salt, hydropower

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Adriatic Sea 0 m
highest point: Dinara 1,830 m

geographically diverse; flat plains along Hungarian border, low mountains and highlands near Adriatic coastline and islands

Geography - note:
controls most land routes from Western Europe to Aegean Sea and Turkish Straits; most Adriatic Sea islands lie off the coast of Croatia - some 1,200 islands, islets, ridges, and rocks

total: 56,542 sq km
land: 56,414 sq km
water: 128 sq km

Southeastern Europe, bordering the Adriatic Sea, between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Slovenia

5,835 km (mainland 1,777 km, islands 4,058 km)

Area - comparative:
slightly smaller than West Virginia

Irrigated land:
110 sq km (2003)

Environment - current issues:
air pollution (from metallurgical plants) and resulting acid rain is damaging the forests; coastal pollution from industrial and domestic waste; landmine removal and reconstruction of infrastructure consequent to 1992-95 civil strife

Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 12 nm
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation

Natural hazards:
destructive earthquakes

Land use:
arable land: 25.82%
permanent crops: 2.19%
other: 71.99% (2005)

  People Back To Top

Total fertility rate:
1.41 children born/woman (2008 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.99 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.63 male(s)/female
total population: 0.93 male(s)/female (2008 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
less than 0.1% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
200 (2001 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 75.13 years
male: 71.49 years
female: 78.97 years (2008 est.)

Major infectious diseases:
degree of risk: intermediate
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea and hepatitis A
vectorborne diseases: tickborne encephalitis
note: highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza has been identified in this country; it poses a negligible risk with extremely rare cases possible among US citizens who have close contact with birds (2008)

definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 98.1%
male: 99.3%
female: 97.1% (2001 census)

Net migration rate:
1.58 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Ethnic groups:
Croat 89.6%, Serb 4.5%, other 5.9% (including Bosniak, Hungarian, Slovene, Czech, and Roma) (2001 census)

Median age:
total: 40.8 years
male: 38.9 years
female: 42.6 years (2008 est.)

4,491,543 (July 2008 est.)

Education expenditures:
4.5% of GDP (2004)

Population growth rate:
-0.043% (2008 est.)

Croatian 96.1%, Serbian 1%, other and undesignated 2.9% (including Italian, Hungarian, Czech, Slovak, and German) (2001 census)

Death rate:
11.66 deaths/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Infant mortality rate:
total: 6.49 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 6.51 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 6.46 deaths/1,000 live births (2008 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths:
fewer than 10 (2001 est.)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 14 years
male: 13 years
female: 14 years (2006)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 15.8% (male 363,551/female 345,132)
15-64 years: 67.2% (male 1,501,949/female 1,517,962)
65 years and over: 17% (male 295,229/female 467,720) (2008 est.)

Birth rate:
9.64 births/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Roman Catholic 87.8%, Orthodox 4.4%, other Christian 0.4%, Muslim 1.3%, other and unspecified 0.9%, none 5.2% (2001 census)

noun: Croat(s), Croatian(s)
adjective: Croatian

  Government Back To Top

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Robert A. BRADTKE
embassy: 2 Thomas Jefferson Street, 10010 Zagreb
mailing address: use street address
telephone: [385] (1) 661-2200
FAX: [385] (1) 661-2373

National holiday:
Independence Day, 8 October (1991); note - 25 June 1991 was the day the Croatian Parliament voted for independence; following a three-month moratorium to allow the European Community to solve the Yugoslav crisis peacefully, Parliament adopted a decision on 8 October 1991 to sever constitutional relations with Yugoslavia

18 years of age; universal (16 years of age, if employed)

Government type:
presidential/parliamentary democracy

Political pressure groups and leaders:
other: human rights groups

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Kolinda GRABAR-KITAROVIC
chancery: 2343 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 588-5899
FAX: [1] (202) 588-8936
consulate(s) general: Chicago, Los Angeles, New York

International organization participation:

Legislative branch:
unicameral Assembly or Sabor (153 seats; members elected from party lists by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
elections: last held 25 November 2007 (next to be held in November 2011)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; number of seats by party - HDZ 66, SDP 57, HNS 6, HSS 6, HDSSB 3, IDS 3, SDSS 3, other 9

Legal system:
based on Austro-Hungarian law system with Communist law influences; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Flag description:
three equal horizontal bands of red (top), white, and blue superimposed by the Croatian coat of arms (red and white checkered)

25 June 1991 (from Yugoslavia)

Country name (Goverment):
conventional long form: Republic of Croatia
conventional short form: Croatia
local long form: Republika Hrvatska
local short form: Hrvatska
former: People's Republic of Croatia, Socialist Republic of Croatia

Political parties and leaders:
Croatian Democratic Congress of Slavonia and Baranja or HDSSB [Vladimir SISLJAGIC]; Croatian Democratic Union or HDZ [Ivo SANADER]; Croatian Party of the Right or HSP [Anto DJAPIC]; Croatian Peasant Party or HSS [Josip FRISCIC]; Croatian Pensioner Party or HSU [Silvano HRELJA]; Croatian People's Party or HNS [Radimir CACIC]; Croatian Social Liberal Party or HSLS [Djurdja ADLESIC]; Independent Democratic Serb Party or SDSS [Vojislav STANIMIROVIC]; Istrian Democratic Assembly or IDS [Ivan JAKOVCIC]; Social Democratic Party of Croatia or SDP [Zoran MILANOVIC]

name: Zagreb
geographic coordinates: 45 48 N, 16 00 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

adopted on 22 December 1990; revised 2000, 2001

Executive branch:
chief of state: President Stjepan (Stipe) MESIC (since 18 February 2000)
head of government: Prime Minister Ivo SANADER (since 9 December 2003); Deputy Prime Ministers Jadranka KOSOR (since 23 December 2003) Damir POLANCEC (since 15 February 2005), Djurdja ADLESIC (since 12 January 2008), Slobodan UZELAC (since 12 January 2008)
cabinet: Council of Ministers named by the prime minister and approved by the parliamentary Assembly
elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held 16 January 2005 (next to be held in January 2010); the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the president and then approved by the Assembly
election results: Stjepan MESIC reelected president; percent of vote - Stjepan MESIC 66%, Jadranka KOSOR 34% in the second round

Administrative divisions:
20 counties (zupanije, zupanija - singular) and 1 city* (grad - singular); Bjelovarsko-Bilogorska, Brodsko-Posavska, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska (Dubrovnik-Neretva), Istarska (Istria), Karlovacka, Koprivnicko-Krizevacka, Krapinsko-Zagorska, Licko-Senjska (Lika-Senj), Medimurska, Osjecko-Baranjska, Pozesko-Slavonska (Pozega-Slavonia), Primorsko-Goranska, Sibensko-Kninska, Sisacko-Moslavacka, Splitsko-Dalmatinska (Split-Dalmatia), Varazdinska, Viroviticko-Podravska, Vukovarsko-Srijemska, Zadarska, Zagreb*, Zagrebacka

Judicial branch:
Supreme Court; Constitutional Court; judges for both courts appointed for eight-year terms by the Judicial Council of the Republic, which is elected by the Assembly

  Economy Back To Top

Exports - partners:
Italy 19.3%, Bosnia and Herzegovina 13.9%, Germany 10.2%, Slovenia 8.4%, Austria 6.2% (2007)

Electricity - consumption:
15.57 billion kWh (2006 est.)

Central bank discount rate:
9% (31 December 2007)

Electricity - imports:
8.374 billion kWh (2006 est.)

Current account balance:
-$6.156 billion (2008 est.)

Debt - external:
$60.11 billion (31 December 2008 est.)

Unemployment rate:
13.9% (2008 est.)

Oil - exports:
43,680 bbl/day (2005)

GDP - per capita (PPP):
$16,900 (2008 est.)

Investment (gross fixed):
31.5% of GDP (2008 est.)

Stock of domestic credit:
$45.7 billion (31 December 2007)

GDP (purchasing power parity):
$75.93 billion (2008 est.)

GDP (official exchange rate):
$63.95 billion (2008 est.)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:
29 (2005)

Exchange rates:
kuna (HRK) per US dollar - 4.98 (2008 est.), 5.3735 (2007), 5.8625 (2006), 5.9473 (2005), 6.0358 (2004)

GDP - real growth rate:
4.6% (2008 est.)

Stock of money:
$11.61 billion (31 December 2007)

Labor force:
1.731 million (2008 est.)

Imports - partners:
Italy 16.1%, Germany 14.4%, Russia 10.1%, China 6.2%, Slovenia 6%, Austria 5.3% (2007)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
6.3% (2008 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 7%
industry: 31.6%
services: 61.4% (2008 est.)

Oil - imports:
112,200 bbl/day (2005)

$15.33 billion f.o.b. (2008 est.)

Natural gas - consumption:
2.73 billion cu m (2006 est.)

Currency (code):
kuna (HRK)

Economy - overview:
Once one of the wealthiest of the Yugoslav republics, Croatia's economy suffered badly during the 1991-95 war as output collapsed and the country missed the early waves of investment in Central and Eastern Europe that followed the fall of the Berlin Wall. Since 2000, however, Croatia's economic fortunes have begun to improve slowly, with moderate but steady GDP growth between 4% and 6% led by a rebound in tourism and credit-driven consumer spending. Inflation over the same period has remained tame and the currency, the kuna, stable. Nevertheless, difficult problems still remain, including a stubbornly high unemployment rate, a growing trade deficit and uneven regional development. The state retains a large role in the economy, as privatization efforts often meet stiff public and political resistance. While macroeconomic stabilization has largely been achieved, structural reforms lag because of deep resistance on the part of the public and lack of strong support from politicians. The EU accession process should accelerate fiscal and structural reform. While long term growth prospects for the economy remain strong, Croatia will face significant pressure as a result of the global financial crisis. Croatia's high foreign debt, anemic export sector, strained state budget, and over-reliance on tourism revenue will result in higher risk to economic stability over the medium term.

Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2007 est.)

Imports - commodities:
machinery, transport and electrical equipment; chemicals, fuels and lubricants; foodstuffs

chemicals and plastics, machine tools, fabricated metal, electronics, pig iron and rolled steel products, aluminum, paper, wood products, construction materials, textiles, shipbuilding, petroleum and petroleum refining, food and beverages, tourism

Electricity - exports:
3.306 billion kWh (2006 est.)

Population below poverty line:
11% (2003)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:
9.33% (31 December 2007)

Stock of quasi money:
$31.86 billion (31 December 2007)

Electricity - production:
12.41 billion kWh (2006 est.)

$32.48 billion f.o.b. (2008 est.)

Oil - proved reserves:
79.15 million bbl (1 January 2008 est.)

Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 17.3%
industry: 28.6%
services: 54% (2005)

Natural gas - proved reserves:
28.54 billion cu m (1 January 2008 est.)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$14.14 billion (31 December 2008 est.)

Oil - consumption:
101,800 bbl/day (2006 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:
$3.374 billion (2008 est.)

Public debt:
48.9% of GDP (2008 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
$26.82 billion (2008 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:
$65.98 billion (31 December 2007)

Currency code:

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 3.4%
highest 10%: 24.5% (2003 est.)

Exports - commodities:
transport equipment, machinery, textiles, chemicals, foodstuffs, fuels

Economic aid - recipient:
ODA, $125.4 million (2005)

Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 33.6%
hydro: 66%
nuclear: 0%
other: 0.4% (2001)

Natural gas - imports:
1.103 billion cu m (2005)

Natural gas - production:
1.58 billion cu m (2006 est.)

revenues: $26.76 billion
expenditures: $28.55 billion (2008 est.)

Fiscal year:
calendar year

Oil - production:
23,620 bbl/day (2007 est.)

  Communications Back To Top

Internet users:
1.995 million (2007)

Telephones - main lines in use:
1.825 million (2007)

1.22 million (1997)

Internet country code:

Radio broadcast stations:
AM 16, FM 98, shortwave 5 (1999)

1.51 million (1997)

Telephones - mobile cellular:
5.035 million (2007)

Television broadcast stations:
36 (plus 321 repeaters) (1995)

Telephone system:
general assessment: the telecommunications network has improved steadily since the mid-1990s; the number of fixed telephone lines holding steady at about 40 per 100 persons; the number of cellular telephone subscriptions exceeds the population
domestic: more than 90 percent of local lines are digital
international: country code - 385; digital international service is provided through the main switch in Zagreb; Croatia participates in the Trans-Asia-Europe (TEL) fiber-optic project, which consists of 2 fiber-optic trunk connections with Slovenia and a fiber-optic trunk line from Rijeka to Split and Dubrovnik; the ADRIA-1 submarine cable provides connectivity to Albania and Greece (2007)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
9 (2000)

Internet hosts:
1.111 million (2008)

  Transportation Back To Top

785 km (2008)

gas 1,556 km; oil 583 km (2007)

total: 2,726 km
standard gauge: 2,726 km 1.435-m gauge (1,199 km electrified) (2006)

Ports and terminals:
Omisalj, Ploce, Rijeka, Sibenik, Vukovar (on Danube)

2 (2007)

Merchant marine:
total: 80
by type: bulk carrier 25, cargo 11, chemical tanker 3, passenger/cargo 30, petroleum tanker 8, refrigerated cargo 1, roll on/roll off 2
registered in other countries: 30 (Bahamas 1, Belize 2, Liberia 2, Malta 9, Marshall Islands 6, Panama 3, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 7) (2008)

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 23
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 6
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 4
under 914 m: 9 (2007)

total: 28,788 km (includes 877 km of expressways) (2006)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 45
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 7
under 914 m: 37 (2007)

68 (2007)

  Military Back To Top

Military service age and obligation:
18-27 years of age for compulsory military service; 16 years of age with consent for voluntary service; 6-month conscript service obligation; full conversion to professional military service by 2010 (2006)

Manpower available for military service:
males age 16-49: 1,035,712
females age 16-49: 1,037,896 (2008 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:
males age 16-49: 771,323
females age 16-49: 855,937 (2008 est.)

Military branches:
Armed Forces of the Republic of Croatia (Oruzane Snage Republike Hrvatske, OSRH), consists of five major commands directly subordinate to a General Staff: Ground Forces (Hrvatska Kopnena Vojska, HKoV), Naval Forces (Hrvatska Ratna Mornarica, HRM), Air Force (Hrvatsko Ratno Zrakoplovstvo, HRZ), Joint Education and Training Command, Logistics Command; Military Police Force supports each of the three Croatian military forces (2008)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
male: 27,500
female: 25,893 (2008 est.)

Military expenditures:
2.39% of GDP (2005 est.)

  Transnational Issues Back To Top

Disputes - international:
dispute remains with Bosnia and Herzegovina over several small disputed sections of the boundary related to maritime access that hinders ratification of the 1999 border agreement; the Croatia-Slovenia land and maritime boundary agreement, which would have ceded most of Pirin Bay and maritime access to Slovenia and several villages to Croatia, remains un-ratified and in dispute; Slovenia also protests Croatia's 2003 claim to an exclusive economic zone in the Adriatic; as a European Union peripheral state, Slovenia imposed a hard border Schengen regime with non-member Croatia in December 2007

Refugees and internally displaced persons:
IDPs: 2,900-7,000 (Croats and Serbs displaced in 1992-95 war) (2007)

Illicit drugs:
transit point along the Balkan route for Southwest Asian heroin to Western Europe; has been used as a transit point for maritime shipments of South American cocaine bound for Western Europe

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