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Pakistan Flag

Country Profile

Capital City: Islamabad (pop. 900 000) and adjacent Rawalpindi (1 400 000) comprise the national capital area with a combined population of 3.7 million. 

Other Cities: Karachi (9 million), Lahore (5 million), Faisalabad (2 million) and Hyderabad (1 million)

Local Time: UTC +5h

Location: Southern Asia, bordering the Arabian Sea between India on the east and Iran and Afghanistan on the west and China in the north.
Area: 804 000 sq. km. (311 000 sq. mi.)
Terrain: Flat Indus plain in east; mountains in north and northwest; Balochistan plateau in west.

Climate: Mostly hot, dry desert; temperate in northwest; arctic in north.

Border countries: Afghanistan, China, India, Iran

Type: Parliamentary democracy.
Independence: 14 August 1947.

Nationality: Noun and adjective--Pakistan(i).
Population: 151 000 000.
Ethnic groups: Punjabi, Sindhi, Pathan (Pushtun), Baloch, Muhajir (i.e., Urdu-speaking immigrants from India and their descendants), Saraiki, Hazara.
Religions: Muslim 97%; small minorities of Christians, Hindus, and others.
Languages: Urdu (national and official), English, Punjabi, Sindhi, Pushtu, Balochi, Hindko, Brahui, Saraiki (Punjabi variant).
Literacy: 45.7%; male 59.8%; female 30.6%.


: Pakistani Rupee (PKR)

Natural resources: Extensive natural gas reserves, limited petroleum, poor quality coal, iron ore, copper, salt, limestone.

Agriculture products:
Cotton, wheat, rice, sugarcane, fruits, vegetables; milk, beef, mutton, eggs.

Industries: Textiles and apparel, food processing, pharmaceuticals, construction materials, paper products, fertilizer, shrimp.

Exports partners:
USA 21.3%, UAE 9.8%, UK 7.1%, Germany 5.2%, Hong Kong 4.2%, Saudi Arabia 4.1% (2004)

Imports partners: China 10.8%, USA 10.2%, UAE 9.3%, Saudi Arabia 9%, Japan 7%, Kuwait 5.3%, Germany 4.2% (2004)

Internet Links

Official Sites of Pakistan

The Government of Pakistan

President of Pakistan

Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Pakistan

Diplomatic Missions
Permanent Mission of Pakistan to the UN

Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan in the U.S.

Pakistani Embassies and Missions Abroad

Foreign Embassies in Islamabad

Regional Governments
Government of the Punjab

Government of Sindh

Population Libraries Network of Pakistan (POPLIBNET)

Pakistan Meteorological Department

Map of Pakistan

Map of Asia



Background:  The separation in 1947 of British India into the Muslim state
of Pakistan (with two sections West and East) and largely Hindu India was
never satisfactorily resolved. A third war between these countries in 1971
resulted in East Pakistan seceding and becoming the separate nation of
Bangladesh. A dispute over the state of Kashmir is ongoing. In response to
Indian nuclear weapons testing, Pakistan conducted its own tests in 1998.

Geography Pakistan

Location:  Southern Asia, bordering the Arabian Sea, between India on
the east and Iran and Afghanistan on the west and China in the north

Geographic coordinates:  30 00 N, 70 00 E

Map references:  Asia

Area:  total: 803,940 sq km land: 778,720 sq km water: 25,220 sq km

Area - comparative:  slightly less than twice the size of California

Land boundaries:  total: 6,774 km border countries: Afghanistan 2,430 km,
China 523 km, India 2,912 km, Iran 909 km

Coastline:  1,046 km

Maritime claims:  contiguous zone: 24 NM territorial sea: 12 NM
continental shelf: 200 NM or to the edge of the continental margin
exclusive economic zone: 200 NM

Climate:  mostly hot, dry desert; temperate in northwest; arctic in north

Terrain:  flat Indus plain in east; mountains in north and northwest;
Balochistan plateau in west

Elevation extremes:  lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m highest point: K2
(Mt. Godwin-Austen) 8,611 m

Natural resources:  land, extensive natural gas reserves, limited
petroleum, poor quality coal, iron ore, copper, salt, limestone

Land use:  arable land: 28% permanent crops: 1% other: 71% (1998 est.)

Irrigated land:  180,000 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards:  frequent earthquakes, occasionally severe especially
in north and west; flooding along the Indus after heavy rains (July
and August)

Environment - current issues:  water pollution from raw sewage, industrial
wastes, and agricultural runoff; limited natural fresh water resources;
a majority of the population does not have access to potable water;
deforestation; soil erosion; desertification

Environment - international agreements:  party to: Biodiversity,
Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental
Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone
Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands signed, but not ratified:
Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban

Geography - note:  controls Khyber Pass and Bolan Pass, traditional
invasion routes between Central Asia and the Indian Subcontinent

People Pakistan

Population:  147,663,429 (July 2002 est.)

Age structure:   39.9% (male 30,321,217; female 28,581,334) 15-64 years:
2,984,391; female 3,129,399) (2002 est.)

Population growth rate:  2.06% (2002 est.)

Birth rate:  30.4 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Death rate:  9.02 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Net migration rate:  -0.79 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Sex ratio:  at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.06
male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 65 years and over:
0.95 male(s)/female total population: 1.05 male(s)/female (2002 est.)

Infant mortality rate:  78.52 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:   62.73 years (2002 est.)  male: Total fertility
rate:  4.25 children born/woman (2002 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:  0.1% (1999 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:  74,000 (1999 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths:  6,500 (1999 est.)

Nationality:  noun: Pakistani(s) adjective: Pakistani

Ethnic groups:  Punjabi, Sindhi, Pashtun (Pathan), Baloch, Muhajir
(immigrants from India at the time of partition and their descendants)

Religions:  Muslim 97% (Sunni 77%, Shi'a 20%), Christian, Hindu, and
other 3%

Languages:  Punjabi 48%, Sindhi 12%, Siraiki (a Punjabi variant) 10%,
Pashtu 8%, Urdu (official) 8%, Balochi 3%, Hindko 2%, Brahui 1%, English
(official and lingua franca of Pakistani elite and most government
ministries), Burushaski, and other 8%

Literacy:  definition: age 15 and over can read and write total
population: 42.7% male: 55.3% female: 29% (1998)

Government Pakistan

Country name:  conventional long form: Islamic Republic of Pakistan
conventional short form: Pakistan former: West Pakistan

Government type:  federal republic

Capital:  Islamabad

Administrative divisions:  4 provinces, 1 territory*, and 1 capital
territory**; Balochistan, Federally Administered Tribal Areas*, Islamabad
Capital Territory**, North-West Frontier Province, Punjab, Sindh note:
the Pakistani-administered portion of the disputed Jammu and Kashmir
region includes Azad Kashmir and the Northern Areas

Independence:  14 August 1947 (from UK)

National holiday:  Republic Day, 23 March (1956)

Constitution:  10 April 1973, suspended 5 July 1977, restored with
amendments 30 December 1985; suspended 15 October 1999

Legal system:  based on English common law with provisions to
accommodate Pakistan's status as an Islamic state; accepts compulsory
ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations

Suffrage:  21 years of age; universal; separate electorates and reserved
parliamentary seats for non-Muslims

Executive branch:  note: following a military takeover on 12 October 1999,
Chief of Army Staff and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee,
General Pervez MUSHARRAF, suspended Pakistan's constitution and assumed
the additional title of Chief Executive; exercising the powers of the
head of the government, he appointed an eight-member National Security
Council to function as Pakistan's supreme governing body; on 12 May 2000,
Pakistan's Supreme Court unanimously validated the October 1999 coup and
granted MUSHARRAF executive and legislative authority for three years
from the coup date; on 20 June 2001, MUSHARRAF named himself and was
sworn in as president, replacing Mohammad Rafiq TARAR; in a referendum
held on 30 April 2002, MUSHARRAF won an overwhelming majority of votes,
extending his rule for five more years chief of state: President Pervez
MUSHARRAF (since 20 June 2001) cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the chief
executive head of government: Chief Executive Pervez MUSHARRAF (since
12 May 2000) elections: prior to the military takeover, Pakistan had
an elected president and prime minister; the president was elected by
Parliament for a five-year term; election last held 31 December 1997
(next election to be held NA); following legislative elections, the leader
of the majority party or majority coalition was usually elected prime
minister by the National Assembly; election last held 3 February 1997
(next to be held NA) election results: results are for the last elections
for prime minister and president prior to the military takeover - Mohammad
Nawaz SHARIF elected prime minister; percent of National Assembly vote -
NA%; Rafiq TARAR elected president; percent of Parliament vote - NA%

Legislative branch:  note - Gen. Pervez MUSHARRAF dissolved Parliament
following the military takeover of 12 October 1999; bicameral Parliament
or Majlis-e-Shoora consists of the Senate (87 seats; members indirectly
elected by provincial assemblies to serve six-year terms; one-third of
the members up for election every two years) and the National Assembly
(217 seats - 10 represent non-Muslims; members elected by popular vote
to serve five-year terms) elections: Senate - last held 12 March 1997
(next to be held by October 2002); National Assembly - last held 3
February 1997 (next to be held by October 2002) election results:
results are for the last elections prior to the military takeover;
Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - PML/N 30, PPP
17, ANP 7, MQM/A 6, JWP 5, BNP 4, JUI/F 2, PML/J 2, BNM/H 1, PKMAP 1,
TJP 1, independents 6, vacant 5; National Assembly - percent of vote
by party - NA%; seats by party - PML/N 137, PPP 18, MQM/A 12, ANP 10,
BNP 3, JWP 2, JUI/F 2, PPP/SB 1, NPP 1, independents 21, minorities 10;
note - Gen. Pervez MUSHARRAF dismissed Parliament 15 October 1999

Judicial branch:  Supreme Court (justices appointed by the president);
Federal Islamic or Shari'a Court

Political parties and leaders:  note: Gen.  Pervez MUSHARRAF dissolved
Parliament following the military takeover of 12 October 1999, however,
political parties have been allowed to operate within limits; Awami
National Party or ANP [Wali KHAN]; Balochistan National Movement/Hayee
Group or BNM/H [Dr.  HAYEE Baluch]; Baluch National Party or BNP
[Sardar Akhtar MENGAL]; Jamhoori Watan Party or JWP [Akbar Khan BUGTI];
Jamiat-al-Hadith or JAH [Sajid MIR]; Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam, Fazlur
Rehman faction or JUI/F [Fazlur REHMAN]; Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan,
Niazi faction or JUP/NI [Abdul Sattar Khan NIAZI]; Millat Party [Farooq
LEGHARI]; Milli Yakjheti Council or MYC is an umbrella organization which
includes Jamaat-i-Islami or JI [Qazi Hussain AHMED], Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam,
Sami-ul-Haq faction or JUI/S [Sami ul-HAQ], Tehrik-I-Jafria Pakistan or
TJP [Allama Sajid NAQVI], and Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan, Noorani faction
or JUP/NO [Shah Ahmad NOORANI]; Mutahida Qaumi Movement, Altaf faction
or MQM/A [Altaf HUSSAIN]; National People's Party or NPP [Ghulam Mustapha
JATOI]; Pakhtun Khwa Milli Awami Party or PKMAP [Mahmood Khan ACHAKZAI];
Pakhtun Quami Party or PQP [Mohammed AFZAL Khan]; Pakistan Awami Tehrik
or PAT [Tahir ul QADRI]; Pakistan Muslim League, Functional Group or
PML/F [Pir PAGARO]; Pakistan Muslim League, Junejo faction or PML/J
[Hamid Nasir CHATTHA]; Pakistan Muslim League, Nawaz Sharif faction
or PML/N [Nawaz SHARIF]; Pakistan Muslim League, Quaid-l-Azam faction
[Mian AZHAR]; Pakistan National Party or PNP [Hasil BIZENJO]; Pakistan
People's Party or PPP [Benazir BHUTTO]; Pakistan People's Party/Shaheed
Bhutto or PPP/SB [Ghinva BHUTTO]; Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaaf or PTI [Imran
KHAN] note: Political pressure groups and leaders:  military remains most
important political force; ulema (clergy), landowners, industrialists,
and small merchants also influential

International organization participation:  AsDB, ASEAN (dialogue partner),
C (suspended), CCC, CP, ECO, ESCAP, FAO, G-19, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD,
Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MINURSO, MONUC, NAM, OAS (observer), OIC,

Diplomatic representation in the US:  chief of mission: Ambassador Ashraf
Jehangir QAZI FAX: [1] (202) 387-0484 consulate(s) general: Los Angeles,
New York, and Sunnyvale (California)
 2315 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone:
Diplomatic representation from the US:  chief of mission: Ambassador
Wendy J. CHAMBERLIN (since Aug. 2001) embassy: Diplomatic Enclave,
Ramna 5, Islamabad mailing address: P. O. Box
 [92] (51) 2080-0000 FAX:  Peshawar

Flag description:  green with a vertical white band (symbolizing the
role of religious minorities) on the hoist side; a large white crescent
and star are centered in the green field; the crescent, star, and color
green are traditional symbols of Islam

Economy Pakistan

Economy - overview:  Pakistan, an impoverished and underdeveloped country,
suffers from internal political disputes, lack of foreign investment,
and a costly confrontation with neighboring India. Pakistan's economic
prospects, marred by poor human development indicators, low levels
of foreign investment, and reliance on international creditors for
hard currency inflows, were nonetheless on an upswing through most of
2001. The MUSHARRAF government made significant inroads in macroeconomic
reform - it completed an IMF short-term loan program for the first time
and improved its standing with international creditors by increasing
revenue collection and restraining the fiscal deficit in the 2001/02
budget. While Pakistan has capitalized on its international standing after
the 11 September terrorist attacks on the US by garnering substantial
assistance from abroad - including $1.3 billion in IMF Poverty Reduction
and Growth Facility aid and $12.5 billion in Paris Club debt rescheduling
- long-term prospects remain uncertain. GDP growth will continue to
hinge on crop performance; dependence on foreign oil leaves the import
bill vulnerable to fluctuating oil prices; and foreign and domestic
investors remain wary of committing to projects in Pakistan. Pakistani
trade levels - already in decline due to the global economic downturn -
worsened in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks.

GDP:  purchasing power parity - $299 billion (2001 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:  3.3% (2001 est.)

GDP - per capita:  purchasing power parity - $2,100 (2001 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:  agriculture: 26% industry: 24% services:
50% (2001 est.)

Population below poverty line:  35% (2001 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:  lowest 10%: 4.1%
highest 10%: 27.7% (1997)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:  31.2 (1996-97)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):  4% (2001 est.)

Labor force:  40.4 million note: extensive export of labor, mostly to
the Middle East, and use of child labor (2000)

Labor force - by occupation:  agriculture 44%, industry 17%, services 39%
(1999 est.)

Unemployment rate:  6.3% (2001 est.)

Budget:  revenues: $8.9 billion expenditures: $11.6 billion, including
capital expenditures of $NA (FY00/01 est.)

Industries:  textiles, food processing, beverages, construction materials,
clothing, paper products, shrimp

Industrial production growth rate:  7% (2001 est.)

Electricity - production:  62.687 billion kWh (2000)

Electricity - production by source:  fossil fuel: 64.09% hydro: 35.31%
other: 0% (2000) nuclear: 0.6%

Electricity - consumption:  58.299 billion kWh (2000)

Electricity - exports:  0 kWh (2000)

Electricity - imports:  0 kWh (2000)

Agriculture - products:  cotton, wheat, rice, sugarcane, fruits,
vegetables; milk, beef, mutton, eggs

Exports:  $8.8 billion (f.o.b., 2001)

Exports - commodities:  textiles (garments, cotton cloth, and yarn),
rice, other agricultural products

Exports - partners:  US 24.8%, UK 6.5%, UAE 6.2%, Hong Kong 5.9%,
Germany 5.6%, (2000)

Imports:  $9.2 billion (f.o.b., 2001)

Imports - commodities:  machinery, petroleum, petroleum products,
chemicals, transportation equipment, edible oils, grains, pulses, flour

Imports - partners:  Kuwait 11.7%, UAE 10.7%, Saudi Arabia 10.5%, US 6%,
Japan 5.6% (2000)

Debt - external:  $31.5 billion (2001 est.)

Economic aid - recipient:  $2 billion (FY99/00)

Currency:  Pakistani rupee (PKR)

Currency code:  PKR

Exchange rates:  Pakistani rupees per US dollar - 60.719 (January 2002),
61.927 (2001), 53.648 (2000), 49.118 (1999), 44.943 (1998), 40.918 (1997)

Fiscal year:  1 July - 30 June

Communications Pakistan

Telephones - main lines in use:  2.861 million (March 1999)

Telephones - mobile cellular:  158,000 (1998)

Telephone system:  general assessment: the domestic system is mediocre,
but improving; service is adequate for government and business use, in
part because major businesses have established their own private systems;
since 1988, the government has promoted investment in the national
telecommunications system on a priority basis, significantly increasing
network capacity; despite major improvements in trunk and urban systems,
telecommunication services are still not readily available to the majority
of the rural population domestic: microwave radio relay, coaxial cable,
fiber-optic cable, cellular, and satellite networks international:
satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 2 Indian
Ocean); 3 operational international gateway exchanges (1 at Karachi and
2 at Islamabad); microwave radio relay to neighboring countries (1999)

Radio broadcast stations:  AM 27, FM 1, shortwave 21 (1998)

Radios:  13.5 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations:  22 (plus seven low-power repeaters) (1997)

Televisions:  3.1 million (1997)

Internet country code:  .pk

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):  30 (2000)

Internet users:  1.2 million (2000)

Transportation Pakistan

Railways:  total: 8,163 km broad gauge: 7,718 km 1.676-m gauge (293 km
electrified) narrow gauge: 445 km 1.000-m gauge (2001)

Highways:  total: 247,811 km paved: 141,252 km (including 339 km of
expressways) unpaved: 106,559 km (1998)

Waterways:  none

Pipelines:  crude oil 250 km; petroleum products 885 km; natural gas
4,044 km (1987)

Ports and harbors:  Karachi, Port Muhammad bin Qasim

Merchant marine:  total: 17 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 241,832
GRT/367,093 DWT ships by type: cargo 13, container 3, petroleum tanker 1
(2002 est.)

Airports:  120 (2001)

Airports - with paved runways:  total: 85 over 3,047 m: 12 2,438 to
3,047 m: 22 914 to 1,523 m: 17 under 914 m: 3 (2001) 1,524 to 2,437 m: 31

Airports - with unpaved runways:  total: 35 1,524 to 2,437 m: 8 914 to
1,523 m: 9 under 914 m: 18 (2001)

Heliports:  9 (2001)

Military Pakistan

Military branches:  Army, Navy, Air Force, Civil Armed Forces, National

Military manpower - military age:  17 years of age (2002 est.)

Military manpower - availability:  males age 15-49: 36,941,592 (2002 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:  males age 15-49: 22,606,576
(2002 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:  males: 1,657,724
(2002 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure:  $2,545,500,000 (FY01)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:  4.6% (FY01)

Transnational Issues Pakistan

Disputes - international:  armed stand-off with India over the status and
sovereignty of Kashmir continues; dispute with India over the terminus of
Rann of Kutch prevents extension of a maritime boundary; water-sharing
problems with India persist over the Indus River (Wular Barrage); close
ties with Pashtuns in Afghanistan make long border difficult to control

Illicit drugs:  Poppy cultivation practically eliminated with only 213
hectares grown; potential heroin production 5 tons; key transit area
for Southwest Asian heroin moving to Western markets; narcotics still
move from Afghanistan, transiting Balochistan Province or Karachi for
onward shipment

This page was last updated on 1 January 2002

Associated Press of Pakistan - APP

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