Republic of Guatemala

República de Guatemala

Political Status: Independent Captaincy General of Guatemala proclaimed 1821; member of United Provinces of Central America, 1824–1838; separate state established 1839; most recent constitution (adopted May 31, 1985, with effect from January 14, 1986) amended by referendum of January 30, 1994.

Area: 42,042 sq. mi. (108,889 sq. km.).

Population: 11,237,196 (2002C); 14,345,000 (2007E).

Major Urban Centers (2005E): GUATEMALA CITY (991,000), Mixco (307,000), Villa Nueva (237,901), Quetzaltenango (114,000), Escuintla (72,000).

Official Language: Spanish.

Monetary Unit: Quetzal (market rate November 1, 2008: 7.58 quetza-les = $1US). Since May 1, 2001, foreign currencies have been permitted to circulate and may be used in business transactions.

President: Álvaro COLOM Caballeros (National Unity of Hope); elected on November 4, 2007, and sworn in for a four-year term on January 14, 2008, succeeding ...

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