Andorra

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The landlocked Principality of Andorra is one of the smallest states in Europe, nestled high in the Pyrenees between the French and Spanish borders. For 715 years, from 1278 to 1993, Andorrans lived under a unique co-principality, ruled by French and Spanish leaders (from 1607 onward, the French chief of state and the Bishop of Urgell). In 1993, this feudal system was modified with the introduction of a modern, constitution; the co-princes remained as titular heads of state, but the government transformed into a parliamentary democracy.

Andorra has become a popular tourist destination visited by approximately 10 million people each year drawn by the winter sports, summer climate, and duty-free shopping. Andorra has also become a wealthy international commercial center because of its mature banking sector and low taxes. As part of its effort to modernize its economy, Andorra has opened to foreign investment, and engaged in other reforms, such as advancing tax initiatives aimed at supporting a broader infrastructure. Although not a member of the European Union (EU), Andorra enjoys a special relationship with the EU and uses the euro as its national currency.

Geography

Location

Southwestern Europe, Pyrenees mountains, on the border between France and Spain

Geographic coordinates

42.30° N, 1.30° E

Area 196/257

total: 468 sq km

land: 468 sq km

water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative

2.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries

total: 118 km

border countries (2): France 55 km, Spain 63 km

Coastline

0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims

none (landlocked)

Climate

temperate; snowy, cold winters and warm, dry summers

Terrain

rugged mountains dissected by narrow valleys

Elevation

mean elevation:

elevation extremes:

lowest point: Riu Runer 840 m

highest point: Pic de Coma Pedrosa 2,946 m

Natural resources

hydropower, mineral water, timber, iron ore, lead

Land use

agricultural land: 43.4%

arable land 5.5%; permanent crops 0%; permanent pasture 37.9%

forest: 34%

other: 22.6% (2011 est.)

Irrigated land

NA

Natural hazards

avalanches

Environment - current issues

deforestation; overgrazing of mountain meadows contributes to soil erosion; air pollution; wastewater treatment and solid waste disposal

Environment - international agreements

party to: Biodiversity, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note

landlocked; straddles a number of important crossroads in the Pyrenees

People and Society

Nationality

noun: Andorran(s)

adjective: Andorran

Ethnic groups

Andorran 49%, Spanish 24.6%, Portuguese 14.3%, French 3.9%, other 8.2% (2012 est.)

Languages

Catalan (official), French, Castilian, Portuguese

Religions

Roman Catholic (predominant)

Population 201/238

85,580 (July 2015 est.)

Age structure

0-14 years: 15.04% (male 6,598/female 6,269)

15-24 years: 9.42% (male 4,182/female 3,880)

25-54 years: 47.78% (male 20,980/female 19,910)

55-64 years: 13.05% (male 5,996/female 5,176)

65 years and over: 14.71% (male 6,357/female 6,232) (2015 est.)

Median age

total: 43 years

male: 43.2 years

female: 42.8 years (2015 est.)

Population growth rate 188/233

0.12% (2015 est.)

Birth rate 221/224

8.13 births/1,000 population (2015 est.)

Death rate 134/225

6.96 deaths/1,000 population (2015 est.)

Net migration rate 78/222

0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2015 est.)

Urbanization

urban population: 85.1% of total population (2015)

rate of urbanization: 0.14% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)

Major urban areas - population

ANDORRA LA VELLA (capital) 23,000 (2014)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1.08 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 1.05 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 1.16 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 1.02 male(s)/female

total population: 1.06 male(s)/female (2015 est.)

Infant mortality rate 200/224

total: 3.65 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 3.65 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 3.65 deaths/1,000 live births (2015 est.)

Life expectancy at birth 8/224

total population: 82.72 years

male: 80.56 years

female: 85.02 years (2015 est.)

Total fertility rate 213/224

1.38 children born/woman (2015 est.)

Health expenditures 53/191

8.1% of GDP (2013)

Physicians density

4 physicians/1,000 population (2010)

Hospital bed density

2.5 beds/1,000 population (2009)

Drinking water source

improved:

urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved:

urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2015 est.)

Sanitation facility access

improved:

urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved:

urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2015 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate

NA

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS

NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths

NA

Obesity - adult prevalence rate 58/191

32.1% (2014)

Education expenditures

3.1% of GDP (2011)

Government

Country name

conventional long form: Principality of Andorra

conventional short form: Andorra

local long form: Principat d'Andorra

local short form: Andorra

Government type

parliamentary democracy (since March 1993) that retains its chiefs of state in the form of a co-principality; the two princes are the President of France and Bishop of Urgell, whose diocese is located in neighboring Spain; both co-princes maintain offices and representatives in Andorra

Capital

name: Andorra la Vella

geographic coordinates: 42.30° N, 1.31° 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

Administrative divisions

7 parishes (parroquies, singular - parroquia); Andorra la Vella, Canillo, Encamp, Escaldes-Engordany, La Massana, Ordino, Sant Julia de Loria

Independence

1278 (formed under the joint sovereignty of the French Count of Foix and the Spanish Bishop of Urgell)

National holiday

Our Lady of Meritxell Day, 8 September (1278)

Constitution

drafted 1991, approved by referendum 14 March 1993, effective 28 April 1993 (2015)

Legal system

mixed legal system of civil and customary law with the influence of canon law

International law organization participation

has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction

Citizenship

citizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: the mother must be an Andorran citizen or the father must have been born in Andorra and both parents maintain permanent residence in Andorra

dual citizenship recognized: no

residency requirement for naturalization: 25 years

Suffrage

18 years of age; universal

Executive branch

chief of state: French Co-prince Francois HOLLANDE (since 15 May 2012); represented by Thierry LATASTE (since 5 January 2015) and Spanish Co-prince Archbishop Joan-Enric VIVES i Sicilia (since 12 May 2003); represented by Josep Maria MAUN (since 20 July 2012)

head of government: Head of Government (or Cap de Govern) Antoni MARTI PETIT (since 12 May 2011)

cabinet: Executive Council designated by Head of Government

elections/appointments: head of government indirectly elected by the General Council (Andorran parliament), formally appointed by the co-princes for a 4-year term; election last held on 31 March 2015 (next to be held in April 2019); the leader of the majority party in the General Council is usually elected head of government

election results: Antoni MARTI PETIT (DA) elected head of government; percent of General Council vote - 79%

Legislative branch

description: unicameral General Council of the Valleys or Consell General de les Valls (a minimum of 28 seats; 14 members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies (parishes) by simple majority vote and 14 directly elected in a single national constituency by proportional representation vote; members serve 4-year terms); note - each voter casts two separate ballots - one for a national list and one for a parish list

elections: last held on 1 March 2015 (next to be held in April 2019)

election results: seats by party - percent of vote by party: DA 34.5%, PLA 25.0%, PS-VA-IC-independent coalition 21.3%, SDP 9.6%, invalid votes 9.5%; seats by party: DA 15, PLA 8, PS-VA-IC-independent coalition 3, SDP 2

Judicial branch

highest court(s): Supreme Court of Justice of Andorra or Tribunal Superior de la Justicia d'Andorra (consists of the court president and 8 judges organized into civil, criminal, and administrative chambers); Constitutional Court or Tribunal Constitucional (consists of 4 magistrates)

judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court president and judges appointed by the Supreme Council of Justice, a 5-member judicial policy and administrative body appointed 1 each by the co-princes, 1 by the General Council, 1 by the executive council president, and 1 by the courts; judges serve 6-year renewable terms; Constitutional magistrates appointed 2 by the co-princes and 2 by the General Council; magistrates' appointments limited to 2 consecutive 8-year terms

subordinate courts: Tribunal of Judges or Tribunal de Batlles; Tribunal of the Courts or Tribunal de Corts

Political parties and leaders

Citizens' Initiative or IC [Sergi RICART] (including PS, VA, IC, and independents)

Democrats for Andorra or DA [Antoni MARTI PETIT]

Greens of Andorra or VA [Isabel LOZANO MUNOZ, Juli FERNANDEZ BLASI]

Liberal Party or PLA [Josep PINTAT FORNE]

Social Democratic Party or PS [Vincenc ALAY FERRER]

Social Democratic Progress Party or SDP [Victor NAUDI ZAMORA]

note: there are also several smaller parties at the Parish level (one is Lauredian Union)

International organization participation

CE, FAO, ICAO, ICC (NGOs), ICCt, ICRM, IFRCS, Interpol, IOC, IPU, ITU, OIF, OPCW, OSCE, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, Union Latina, UNWTO, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WTO (observer)

Flag description

three vertical bands of blue (hoist side), yellow, and red, with the national coat of arms centered in the yellow band; the latter band is slightly wider than the other two so that the ratio of band widths is 8:9:8; the coat of arms features a quartered shield with the emblems of (starting in the upper left and proceeding clockwise): Urgell, Foix, Bearn, and Catalonia; the motto reads VIRTUS UNITA FORTIOR (Strength United is Stronger); the flag combines the blue and red French colors with the red and yellow of Spain to show Franco-Spanish protection

note: similar to the flags of Chad and Romania, which do not have a national coat of arms in the center, and the flag of Moldova, which does bear a national emblem

National symbol(s)

national colors: blue, yellow, red

National anthem

name: "El Gran Carlemany" (The Great Charlemagne)

lyrics/music: Joan BENLLOCH i VIVO/Enric MARFANY BONS

note: adopted 1921; the anthem provides a brief history of Andorra in a first person narrative

Economy

Economy - overview

Tourism, retail sales, and finance are the mainstays of Andorra's tiny, well-to-do economy, accounting for more than three-quarters of GDP. Andorra's duty-free status for some products and its summer and winter resorts attract millions of visitors annually, although the economic downturn in neighboring countries has curtailed the number of tourists. Agricultural production is limited - only 5% of the land is arable - and most food has to be imported, making the economy vulnerable to changes in fuel and food prices. The principal livestock is sheep. Manufacturing output and exports consist mainly of perfumes and cosmetic products, products of the printing industry, electrical machinery and equipment, clothing, tobacco products, and furniture. Andorra is a member of the EU Customs Union and is treated as an EU member for trade in manufactured goods (no tariffs) and as a non-EU member for agricultural products. Andorra uses the euro and is effectively subject to the monetary policy of the European Central Bank. Andorra's comparative advantage as a tax haven eroded when the borders of neighboring France and Spain opened; its bank secrecy laws have been relaxed under pressure from the EU and OECD.

Slower growth in Spain and France has dimmed Andorra's economic prospects. Since 2010, a drop in tourism contributed to a contraction in GDP and a sharp deterioration of public finances, prompting the government to begin implementing several austerity measures to reduce the budget deficit, including levying a special corporate tax. The Government is also planning to institute an income tax at the behest of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. The new tax will apply to anyone who lives in the principality for at least 183 days in a calendar year. The first $30,000 of income will be tax free, with the next $20,000 taxed at 5%. The balance of income exceeding the initial $50,000 will be taxed at 10%, which is still less than in most West European countries. Andorra’s Government also relaxed its residency and investment laws in 2012 to make the country more attractive to foreign investors. A person now must spend 90 days a year in the principality to qualify for residency, compared with the previous 180-day requirement. Foreigners now have the same property ownership rights as citizens. In addition, three new categories of residency permits were introduced. Anyone who is retired or at least not working in Andorra can obtain a permit in the first category by making a financial investment in the country of at least €400,000, which can include a property purchase.

GDP (purchasing power parity) 184/230

$3.163 billion (2012 est.)

$3.214 billion (2011 est.)

$3.227 billion (2010 est.)

note: data are in 2012 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate)

$4.8 billion (2012 est.)

GDP - real growth rate 206/225

-1.6% (2012 est.)

-0.4% (2011 est.)

-1.9% (2010 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP) 45/230

$37,200 (2011 est.)

$37,700 (2010 est.)

$37,900 (2009 est.)

GDP - composition, by sector of origin

agriculture: 14%

industry: 79%

services: 6% (2011 est.)

Agriculture - products

small quantities of rye, wheat, barley, oats, vegetables, tobacco; sheep, cattle

Industries

tourism (particularly skiing), banking, timber, furniture

Industrial production growth rate

NA%

Labor force 200/233

36,060 (2012)

Labor force - by occupation

agriculture: 0.4%

industry: 4.7%

services: 94.9% (2010)

Unemployment rate 35/207

4% (2012 est.)

1.9% (2011 est.)

Population below poverty line

NA%

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: NA%

highest 10%: NA%

Budget

revenues: $1.029 billion

expenditures: $1.041 billion (2012)

Taxes and other revenues 147/219

21.4% of GDP (2012)

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-) 37/220

-0.3% of GDP (2012)

Public debt 109/176

41.1% of GDP (2012)

37.7% of GDP (2011)

Fiscal year

calendar year

Inflation rate (consumer prices) 70/226

1.1% (2012 est.)

-2.5% (2011 est.)

Exports 198/224

$70 million (2012 est.)

$72 million (2011 est.)

Exports - commodities

tobacco products, furniture

Imports 171/223

$1.43 billion (2012 est.)

$1.501 billion (2011 est.)

Imports - commodities

consumer goods, food, fuel, electricity

Debt - external

$NA

Exchange rates

euros (EUR) per US dollar -

0.89 (2015 est.)

0.75 (2014 est.)

0.76 (2013 est.)

0.78 (2012 est.)

0.72 (2011 est.)

Energy

Electricity - production 201/220

91.24 million kWh (2011)

Electricity - consumption 170/219

562.4 million kWh (2012)

Electricity - exports 99/218

0 kWh (2012 est.)

Electricity - imports 115/219

0 kWh (2012 est.)

Electricity - installed generating capacity 139/214

520,000 kW (2010 est.)

Electricity - from fossil fuels 128/214

61.3% of total installed capacity (2010 est.)

Electricity - from nuclear fuels 41/214

0% of total installed capacity (2010 est.)

Electricity - from hydroelectric plants 86/214

23.3% of total installed capacity (2010 est.)

Communications

Telephones - fixed lines 168/219

total subscriptions: 38,200

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 45 (2014 est.)

Telephones - mobile cellular 198/217

total: 66,200

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 78 (2014 est.)

Telephone system

general assessment: modern automatic telephone system

domestic: modern system with microwave radio relay connections between exchanges

international: country code - 376; landline circuits to France and Spain (2012)

Broadcast media

1 public TV station and 2 public radio stations; about 10 commercial radio stations; good reception of radio and TV broadcasts from stations in France and Spain; upgraded to terrestrial digital TV broadcasting in 2007; roughly 25 international TV channels available (2012)

Radio broadcast stations

AM 0, FM 1, shortwave 0 (easy access to radio and television broadcasts originating in France and Spain) (2009)

Television broadcast stations

1 (2009)

Internet country code

.ad

Internet hosts 109/232

28,383 (2012)

Internet users 176/217

total: 76,300

percent of population: 89.3% (2014 est.)

Transportation

Roadways 203/223

total: 320 km (2008)

Military and Security

Military branches

no regular military forces, Police Service of Andorra (2011)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international

none