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Cocos (Keeling) Islands
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Population: 617 - domains:cc 2429 (Alta Vista)
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Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Background:  There are 27 coral islands in the group. Captain William
Keeling discovered the islands in 1609, but they remained uninhabited
until the 19th century. Annexed by the UK in 1857, they were transferred
to the Australian Government in 1955. The population on the two inhabited
islands generally is split between the ethnic Europeans on West Island
and the ethnic Malays on Home Island.

Geography Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Location:  Southeastern Asia, group of islands in the Indian Ocean,
south of Indonesia, about halfway from Australia to Sri Lanka

Geographic coordinates:  12 30 S, 96 50 E

Map references:  Southeast Asia

Area:  total: 14 sq km note: includes the two main islands of West Island
and Home Island water: 0 sq km land: 14 sq km

Area - comparative:  about 24 times the size of The Mall in Washington, DC

Land boundaries:  0 km

Coastline:  26 km

Maritime claims:  exclusive fishing zone: 200 NM territorial sea: 12 NM

Climate:  tropical with high humidity, moderated by the southeast trade
winds for about nine months of the year

Terrain:  flat, low-lying coral atolls

Elevation extremes:  lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m highest point:
unnamed location 5 m

Natural resources:  fish

Land use:  arable land: 0% permanent crops: 0% other: 100% (1998 est.)

Irrigated land:  NA sq km

Natural hazards:  cyclone season is October to April

Environment - current issues:  fresh water resources are limited to
rainwater accumulations in natural underground reservoirs

Geography - note:  islands are thickly covered with coconut palms and
other vegetation

People Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Population:  632 (July 2002 est.)

Age structure:  0-14 years: NA% 15-64 years: NA% 65 years and over: NA%

Population growth rate:  -0.22% (2002 est.)

Birth rate:  NA births/1,000 population

Death rate:  NA deaths/1,000 population

Net migration rate:  NA migrant(s)/1,000 population

Infant mortality rate:  NA deaths/1,000 live births

Life expectancy at birth:  total population: NA years male: NA years
female: NA years

Total fertility rate:  NA children born/woman

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:  NA%

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:  NA

HIV/AIDS - deaths:  NA

Nationality:  noun: Cocos Islander(s) adjective: Cocos Islander

Ethnic groups:  Europeans, Cocos Malays

Religions:  Sunni Muslim 80%, other 20% (2002 est.)

Languages:  Malay (Cocos dialect), English

Government Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Country name:  conventional long form: Territory of Cocos (Keeling)
Islands conventional short form: Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Dependency status:  territory of Australia; administered from Canberra
by the Australian Department of Transport and Regional Services

Government type:  NA

Capital:  West Island

Administrative divisions:  none (territory of Australia)

Independence:  none (territory of Australia)

National holiday:  NA

Constitution:  Cocos (Keeling) Islands Act of 1955

Legal system:  based upon the laws of Australia and local laws

Suffrage:  NA

Executive branch:  chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February
1952), represented by the Australian governor general elections: none;
the monarch is hereditary; administrator appointed by the governor general
of Australia and represents the monarch and Australia head of government:
Administrator (nonresident) William Leonard TAYLOR (since 4 February 1999)
cabinet: NA

Legislative branch:  unicameral Cocos (Keeling) Islands Shire Council
(7 seats)

Judicial branch:  Supreme Court; Magistrate's Court

Political parties and leaders:  none

Political pressure groups and leaders:  none

International organization participation:  none

Diplomatic representation in the US:  none (territory of Australia)

Diplomatic representation from the US:  none (territory of Australia)

Flag description:  the flag of Australia is used

Economy Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Economy - overview:  Grown throughout the islands, coconuts are the sole
cash crop. Small local gardens and fishing contribute to the food supply,
but additional food and most other necessities must be imported from
Australia. There is a small tourist industry.

GDP:  purchasing power parity - $NA

GDP - real growth rate:  NA%

GDP - per capita:  purchasing power parity - $NA

GDP - composition by sector:  agriculture: NA% industry: NA% services: NA%

Population below poverty line:  NA%

Household income or consumption by percentage share:  lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices):  NA%

Labor force:  NA

Labor force - by occupation:  the Cocos Islands Cooperative Society
Ltd. employs construction workers, stevedores, and lighterage workers;
tourism employs others

Unemployment rate:  60% (2000 est.)

Budget:  revenues: $NA expenditures: $NA, including capital expenditures
of $NA

Industries:  copra products and tourism

Industrial production growth rate:  NA%

Electricity - production:  NA kWh

Electricity - production by source:  fossil fuel: NA% hydro: NA% other:
NA% nuclear: NA%

Electricity - consumption:  NA kWh

Agriculture - products:  vegetables, bananas, pawpaws, coconuts

Exports:  $NA

Exports - commodities:  copra

Exports - partners:  Australia

Imports:  $NA

Imports - commodities:  foodstuffs

Imports - partners:  Australia

Debt - external:  $NA

Economic aid - recipient:  $NA

Currency:  Australian dollar (AUD)

Currency code:  AUD

Exchange rates:  Australian dollars per US dollar - 1.9354 (January 2002),
1.9320 (2001), 1.7173 (2000), 1.5497 (1999), 1.5888 (1998), 1.3439 (1997)

Fiscal year:  1 July - 30 June

Communications Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Telephones - main lines in use:  287 (1992)

Telephones - mobile cellular:  NA

Telephone system:  general assessment: connected within Australia's
telecommunication system domestic: NA international: telephone, telex,
and facsimile communications with Australia and elsewhere via satellite;
1 satellite earth station of NA type (2002)

Radio broadcast stations:  AM 1, FM 0, shortwave 0 (2000)

Radios:  300 (1992)

Television broadcast stations:  NA

Televisions:  NA

Internet country code:  .cc

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):  2 (2000)

Internet users:  NA

Transportation Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Railways:  0 km

Highways:  total: 15 km (2001) paved: NA km unpaved: NA km

Waterways:  none

Ports and harbors:  none; lagoon anchorage only

Merchant marine:  none (2002 est.)

Airports:  1 (2001)

Airports - with paved runways:  total: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2001)

Military Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Military - note:  defense is the responsibility of Australia; the
territory does have a five-person police force

Transnational Issues Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Disputes - international:  none

This page was last updated on 1 January 2002




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