Christmas Island

source : World Fact Book 2008 (October 2008)

SEE UPDATED INFORMATION HERE

   Introduction    Christmas Island
Background:
Definition Field Listing Named in 1643 for the day of its discovery, the island was annexed and settlement began by the UK in 1888. Phosphate mining began in the 1890s. The UK transferred sovereignty to Australia in 1958. Almost two-thirds of the island has been declared a national park.
   Geography    Christmas Island
Location:
Definition Field Listing Southeastern Asia, island in the Indian Ocean, south of Indonesia
Geographic coordinates:
Definition Field Listing 10 30 S, 105 40 E
Map references:
Definition Field Listing Southeast Asia
Area:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order total: 135 sq km
land: 135 sq km
water: 0 sq km
Area - comparative:
Definition Field Listing about three-quarters the size of Washington, DC
Land boundaries:
Definition Field Listing 0 km
Coastline:
Definition Field Listing 138.9 km
Maritime claims:
Definition Field Listing territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 12 nm
exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm
Climate:
Definition Field Listing tropical with a wet season (December to April) and dry season; heat and humidity moderated by trade winds
Terrain:
Definition Field Listing steep cliffs along coast rise abruptly to central plateau
Elevation extremes:
Definition Field Listing lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
highest point: Murray Hill 361 m
Natural resources:
Definition Field Listing phosphate, beaches
Land use:
Definition Field Listing arable land: 0%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 100% (mainly tropical rainforest; 63% of the island is a national park) (2005)
Irrigated land:
Definition Field Listing NA
Natural hazards:
Definition Field Listing the narrow fringing reef surrounding the island can be a maritime hazard
Environment - current issues:
Definition Field Listing loss of rainforest; impact of phosphate mining
Geography - note:
Definition Field Listing located along major sea lanes of Indian Ocean
   People    Christmas Island
Population:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order 1,402 (July 2007 est.)
Age structure:
Definition Field Listing 0-14 years: NA
15-64 years: NA
65 years and over: NA
Population growth rate:
Definition Field Listing 0% (2008 est.)
Birth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order NA (2008 est.)
Death rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order NA (2008 est.)
Net migration rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order NA (2008 est.)
Sex ratio:
Definition Field Listing NA
Infant mortality rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order total: NA
male: NA
female: NA (2008 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order total population: NA
male: NA
female: NA (2008 est.)
Total fertility rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order NA (2008 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order NA
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order NA
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order NA
Nationality:
Definition Field Listing noun: Christmas Islander(s)
adjective: Christmas Island
Ethnic groups:
Definition Field Listing Chinese 70%, European 20%, Malay 10%
note: no indigenous population (2001)
Religions:
Definition Field Listing Buddhist 36%, Muslim 25%, Christian 18%, other 21% (1997)
Languages:
Definition Field Listing English (official), Chinese, Malay
Literacy:
Definition Field Listing NA
   Government    Christmas Island
Country name:
Definition Field Listing conventional long form: Territory of Christmas Island
conventional short form: Christmas Island
Dependency status:
Definition Field Listing non-self governing territory of Australia; administered from Canberra by the Australian Attorney-General's Department
Government type:
Definition Field Listing NA
Capital:
Definition Field Listing name: The Settlement
geographic coordinates: 10 25 S, 105 43 E
time difference: UTC+7 (12 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions:
Definition Field Listing none (territory of Australia)
Independence:
Definition Field Listing none (territory of Australia)
National holiday:
Definition Field Listing Australia Day, 26 January (1788)
Constitution:
Definition Field Listing Christmas Island Act of 1958-59 (1 October 1958) as amended by the Territories Law Reform Act of 1992
Legal system:
Definition Field Listing under the authority of the governor general of Australia and Australian law
Executive branch:
Definition Field Listing chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by the Australian governor general
head of government: Administrator Neil LUCAS (since 30 January 2006)
elections: the monarch is hereditary; administrator appointed by the governor general of Australia and represents the monarch and Australia
Legislative branch:
Definition Field Listing unicameral Christmas Island Shire Council (9 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
elections: held every two years with half the members standing for election; last held 20 October 2007 (next to be held in 2009)
election results: percent of vote - NA; seats - independents 9
Judicial branch:
Definition Field Listing Supreme Court; District Court; Magistrate's Court
Political parties and leaders:
Definition Field Listing none
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Definition Field Listing none
International organization participation:
Definition Field Listing none
Diplomatic representation in the US:
Definition Field Listing none (territory of Australia)
Diplomatic representation from the US:
Definition Field Listing none (territory of Australia)
Flag description:
Definition Field Listing territorial flag; divided diagonally from upper hoist to lower fly; the upper triangle is green with a yellow image of the Golden Bosun Bird superimposed, while the lower triangle is blue with the Southern Cross constellation, representing Australia, superimposed; a centered yellow disk displays a green map of the island
note: the flag of Australia is used for official purposes
   Economy    Christmas Island
Economy - overview:
Definition Field Listing Phosphate mining had been the only significant economic activity, but in December 1987 the Australian Government closed the mine. In 1991, the mine was reopened. With the support of the government, a $34 million casino opened in 1993, but closed in 1998. The Australian Government in 2001 agreed to support the creation of a commercial space-launching site on the island, expected to begin operations in the near future.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order $NA
Labor force:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order NA
Budget:
Definition Field Listing revenues: $NA
expenditures: $NA
Agriculture - products:
Definition Field Listing NA
Industries:
Definition Field Listing tourism, phosphate extraction (near depletion)
Exports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order $NA
Exports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing phosphate
Exports - partners:
Definition Field Listing Australia, NZ (2006)
Imports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order $NA
Imports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing consumer goods
Imports - partners:
Definition Field Listing principally Australia (2006)
Economic aid - recipient:
Definition Field Listing $NA
Currency (code):
Definition Field Listing Australian dollar (AUD)
Exchange rates:
Definition Field Listing Australian dollars per US dollar - 1.2137 (2007), 1.3285 (2006), 1.3095 (2005), 1.3598 (2004), 1.5419 (2003)
Fiscal year:
Definition Field Listing 1 July - 30 June
   Communications    Christmas Island
Telephones - main lines in use:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order NA
Telephone system:
Definition Field Listing general assessment: service provided by the Australian network
domestic: GSM mobile telephone service replaced older analog system in February 2005
international: country code - 61-8; satellite earth station - 1 (Intelsat provides telephone and telex service) (2005)
Radio broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing AM 1, FM 2, shortwave 0 (2006)
Television broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing 0 (TV broadcasts received via satellite from mainland Australia) (2006)
Internet country code:
Definition Field Listing .cx
Internet hosts:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order 1,826 (2007)
Internet users:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order 464 (2001)
   Transportation    Christmas Island
Airports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order 1 (2007)
Airports - with paved runways:
Definition Field Listing total: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2007)
Roadways:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order total: 140 km
paved: 30 km
unpaved: 110 km (2007)
Ports and terminals:
Definition Field Listing Flying Fish Cove
   Military    Christmas Island
Military - note:
Definition Field Listing defense is the responsibility of Australia
   Transnational Issues    Christmas Island
Disputes - international:
Definition Field Listing none



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Source : CIA's World Fact Book 2008

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