[Country map of Peru]



Location: Western South America, bordering the South Pacific Ocean, between Chile and Ecuador

Map references: South America

total area: 1,285,220 sq km
land area: 1.28 million sq km
comparative area: slightly smaller than Alaska

Land boundaries: total 6,940 km, Bolivia 900 km, Brazil 1,560 km, Chile 160 km, Colombia 2,900 km, Ecuador 1,420 km

Coastline: 2,414 km

Maritime claims:
continental shelf: 200 nm
territorial sea: 200 nm

International disputes: three sections of the boundary with Ecuador are in dispute

Climate: varies from tropical in east to dry desert in west

Terrain: western coastal plain (costa), high and rugged Andes in center (sierra), eastern lowland jungle of Amazon Basin (selva)

Natural resources: copper, silver, gold, petroleum, timber, fish, iron ore, coal, phosphate, potash

Land use:
arable land: 3%
permanent crops: 0%
meadows and pastures: 21%
forest and woodland: 55%
other: 21%

Irrigated land: 12,500 sq km (1989 est.)

current issues: deforestation; overgrazing of the slopes of the costa and sierra leading to soil erosion; desertification; air pollution in Lima; pollution of rivers and coastal waters from municipal and mining wastes
natural hazards: earthquakes, tsunamis, flooding, landslides, mild volcanic activity
international agreements: party to - Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Wetlands, Whaling; signed, but not ratified - Desertification, Tropical Timber 94

Note: shares control of Lago Titicaca, world's highest navigable lake, with Bolivia


Population: 24,087,372 (July 1995 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 35% (female 4,152,520; male 4,296,293)
15-64 years: 61% (female 7,280,287; male 7,378,227)
65 years and over: 4% (female 535,156; male 444,889) (July 1995 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.8% (1995 est.)

Birth rate: 24.88 births/1,000 population (1995 est.)

Death rate: 6.84 deaths/1,000 population (1995 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (1995 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 52.1 deaths/1,000 live births (1995 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 66.07 years
male: 63.86 years
female: 68.38 years (1995 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3 children born/woman (1995 est.)

noun: Peruvian(s)
adjective: Peruvian

Ethnic divisions: Indian 45%, mestizo (mixed Indian and European ancestry) 37%, white 15%, black, Japanese, Chinese, and other 3%

Religions: Roman Catholic

Languages: Spanish (official), Quechua (official), Aymara

Literacy: age 15 and over can read and write (1990 est.)
total population: 82%
male: 92%
female: 74%

Labor force: 8 million (1992)
by occupation: government and other services 44%, agriculture 37%, industry 19% (1988 est.)


conventional long form: Republic of Peru
conventional short form: Peru
local long form: Republica del Peru
local short form: Peru

Digraph: PE

Type: republic

Capital: Lima

Administrative divisions: 24 departments (departamentos, singular - departamento) and 1 constitutional province* (provincia constitucional); Amazonas, Ancash, Apurimac, Arequipa, Ayacucho, Cajamarca, Callao*, Cusco, Huancavelica, Huanuco, Ica, Junin, La Libertad, Lambayeque, Lima, Loreto, Madre de Dios, Moquegua, Pasco, Piura, Puno, San Martin, Tacna, Tumbes, Ucayali
note: the 1979 Constitution mandated the creation of regions (regiones, singular - region) to function eventually as autonomous economic and administrative entities; so far, 12 regions have been constituted from 23 of the 24 departments - Amazonas (from Loreto), Andres Avelino Caceres (from Huanuco, Pasco, Junin), Arequipa (from Arequipa), Chavin (from Ancash), Grau (from Tumbes, Piura), Inca (from Cusco, Madre de Dios, Apurimac), La Libertad (from La Libertad), Los Libertadores-Huari (from Ica, Ayacucho, Huancavelica), Mariategui (from Moquegua, Tacna, Puno), Nor Oriental del Maranon (from Lambayeque, Cajamarca, Amazonas), San Martin (from San Martin), Ucayali (from Ucayali); formation of another region has been delayed by the reluctance of the constitutional province of Callao to merge with the department of Lima; because of inadequate funding from the central government and organizational and political difficulties, the regions have yet to assume major responsibilities; the 1993 Constitution retains the regions but limits their authority; the 1993 Constitution also reaffirms the roles of departmental and municipal governments.

Independence: 28 July 1821 (from Spain)

National holiday: Independence Day, 28 July (1821)

Constitution: 31 December 1993

Legal system: based on civil law system; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
chief of state and head of government: President Alberto Kenyo FUJIMORI Fujimori (since 28 July 1990); election last held 9 April 1995 (next to be held NA 2000); results - Alberto FUJIMORI 64.42%, Javier PEREZ de CUELLAR 21.80%, Mercedes CABANILLAS 4.11%, other 9.67%
cabinet: Council of Ministers; appointed by the president
note: Prime Minister Efrain GOLDENBERG Schreiber (since NA February 1994) does not exercise executive power; this power is in the hands of the president

Legislative branch: unicameral
Congress: elections last held 9 April 1995 (next to be held NA 2000); results - C90/NM 52.1% of the total vote, UPP 14%, eleven other parties 33.9%; seats - (120 total, when installed on 28 July 1995) C90/NM 67, UPP 17, APRA 8, FIM 6, (CODE)-Pais Posible 5, AP 4, PPC 3, Renovacion 3, IU 2, OBRAS 2, MIA 1, FRENATRACA 1, (FREPAP) 1

Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Justice (Corte Suprema de Justicia)

Political parties and leaders: Change 90-New Majority (C90/NM), Alberto FUJIMORI; Union for Peru (UPP), Javier PEREZ de CUELLAR; American Popular Revolutionary Alliance (APRA), Agustin MANTILLA Campos; Independent Moralizing Front (FIM), Fernando OLIVERA Vega; Democratic Coordinator (CODE) - Pais Posible, Jose BARBA Caballero and Alejandro TOLEDO; Popular Action Party (AP), Raul DIEZ CANSECO; Popular Christian Party (PPC), Luis BEDOYA Reyes; Renovacion, Rafael REY Rey; Civic Works Movement (OBRAS), Ricardo BELMONT; United Left (IU), Agustin HAYA de la TORRE; Independent Agrarian Movement (MIA), Rolando SALVATERRIE; Peru 2000-National Front of Workers and Peasants (FRENATRACA), Roger CACARES; Popular Agricultural Front (FREPAP), Ezequiel ATAUCUSI

Other political or pressure groups: leftist guerrilla groups include Shining Path, Abimael GUZMAN Reynoso (imprisoned); Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement, Nestor SERPA and Victor POLAY (imprisoned)


Diplomatic representation in US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Ricardo V. LUNA Mendoza
chancery: 1700 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036
telephone: [1] (202) 833-9860 through 9869
FAX: [1] (202) 659-8124
consulate(s) general: Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Paterson (New Jersey), and San Francisco

US diplomatic representation:
chief of mission: Ambassador Alvin P. ADAMS, Jr.
embassy: corner of Avenida Inca Garcilaso de la Vega and Avenida Espana, Lima
mailing address: P. O. Box 1995, Lima 1; American Embassy (Lima), APO AA 34031
telephone: [51] (14) 338000
FAX: [51] (14) 316682

Flag: three equal, vertical bands of red (hoist side), white, and red with the coat of arms centered in the white band; the coat of arms features a shield bearing a llama, cinchona tree (the source of quinine), and a yellow cornucopia spilling out gold coins, all framed by a green wreath


Overview: The Peruvian economy has become increasingly market-oriented, with major privatizations completed in 1994 in the mining and telecommunications industries. In the 1980s the economy suffered from hyperinflation, declining per capita output, and mounting external debt. Peru was shut off from IMF and World Bank support in the mid-1980s because of its huge debt arrears. An austerity program implemented shortly after the FUJIMORI government took office in July 1990 contributed to a third consecutive yearly contraction of economic activity, but the slide came to a halt late that year, and in 1991 output rose 2.4%. After a burst of inflation as the austerity program eliminated government price subsidies, monthly price increases eased to the single-digit level and by December 1991 dropped to the lowest increase since mid-1987. Lima obtained a financial rescue package from multilateral lenders in September 1991, although it faced $14 billion in arrears on its external debt. By working with the IMF and World Bank on new financial conditions and arrangements, the government succeeded in ending its arrears by March 1993. In 1992, GDP had fallen by 2.8%, in part because a warmer-than-usual El Nino current resulted in a 30% drop in the fish catch, but the economy rebounded as strong foreign investment helped push growth to 6% in 1993 and 8.6% in 1994.

National product: GDP - purchasing power parity - $73.6 billion (1994 est.)

National product real growth rate: 8.6% (1994 est.)

National product per capita: $3,110 (1994 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 15% (1994 est.)

Unemployment rate: 15%; extensive underemployment (1992 est.)

revenues: $2 billion
expenditures: $1.7 billion, including capital expenditures of $300 million (1992 est.)

Exports: $4.1 billion (f.o.b., 1994 est.)
commodities: copper, zinc, fishmeal, crude petroleum and byproducts, lead, refined silver, coffee, cotton
partners: US 19%, Japan 9%, Italy, Germany

Imports: $5.1 billion (f.o.b., 1994 est.)
commodities: machinery, transport equipment, foodstuffs, petroleum, iron and steel, chemicals, pharmaceuticals
partners: US 21%, Colombia, Argentina, Japan, Germany, Brazil

External debt: $22.4 billion (1994 est.)

Industrial production: NA

capacity: 4,190,000 kW
production: 11.2 billion kWh
consumption per capita: 448 kWh (1993)

Industries: mining of metals, petroleum, fishing, textiles, clothing, food processing, cement, auto assembly, steel, shipbuilding, metal fabrication

Agriculture: accounts for 12% of GDP, about 35% of labor force; commercial crops - coffee, cotton, sugarcane; other crops - rice, wheat, potatoes, plantains, coca; animal products - poultry, red meats, dairy, wool; not self-sufficient in grain or vegetable oil; fish catch of 6.9 million metric tons (1990)

Illicit drugs: world's largest coca leaf producer with about 108,600 hectares under cultivation in 1994; source of supply for most of the world's coca paste and cocaine base; at least 85% of coca cultivation is for illicit production; most of cocaine base is shipped to Colombian drug dealers for processing into cocaine for the international drug market, but exports of finished cocaine are increasing

Economic aid:
recipient: US commitments, including Ex-Im (FY70-89), $1.7 billion; Western (non-US) countries, ODA and OOF bilateral commitments (1970-89), $4.3 billion; Communist countries (1970-89), $577 million

Currency: 1 nuevo sol (S/.) = 100 centimos

Exchange rates: nuevo sol (S/.) per US$1 - 2.20 (February 1995), 2.195 (1994),1.988 (1993), 1.245 (1992), 0.772 (1991), 0.187 (1990)

Fiscal year: calendar year


total: 1,801 km
standard gauge: 1,501 km 1.435-m gauge
narrow gauge: 300 km 0.914-m gauge

total: 69,942 km
paved: 7,459 km
unpaved: improved earth 13,538 km; unimproved earth 48,945 km

Inland waterways: 8,600 km of navigable tributaries of Amazon system and 208 km of Lago Titicaca

Pipelines: crude oil 800 km; natural gas and natural gas liquids 64 km

Ports: Callao, Chimbote, Ilo, Iquitos, Matarani, Paita, Pucallpa, Salaverry, San Martin, Talara, Yurimaguas
note: Iquitos, Pucallpa, and Yurimaguas are all on the upper reaches of the Amazon and its tributaries

Merchant marine:
total: 10 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 90,501 GRT/144,913 DWT
ships by type: bulk 3, cargo 6, refrigerated cargo 1
note: in addition, 4 naval tankers and 1 naval cargo are sometimes used commercially

total: 236
with paved runways over 3,047 m: 6
with paved runways 2,438 to 3,047 m: 16
with paved runways 1,524 to 2,437 m: 11
with paved runways 914 to 1,523 m: 5
with paved runways under 914 m: 97
with unpaved runways over 3,047 m: 1
with unpaved runways 2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
with unpaved runways 1,524 to 2,438 m: 21
with unpaved runways 914 to 1,523 m: 77


Telephone system: 544,000 telephones; fairly adequate for most requirements
local: NA
intercity: nationwide microwave radio relay system and 12 domestic satellite links
international: 2 Atlantic Ocean INTELSAT earth stations

broadcast stations: AM 273, FM 0, shortwave 144
radios: NA

broadcast stations: 140
televisions: NA

Defense Forces

Branches: Army (Ejercito Peruano), Navy (Marina de Guerra del Peru), Air Force (Fuerza Aerea del Peru), National Police

Manpower availability: males age 15-49 6,369,157; males fit for military service 4,300,772; males reach military age (20) annually 251,798 (1995 est.)

Defense expenditures: exchange rate conversion - $810 million, about 2.7% of GDP (1994)