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2 definitions found
 for Belize
From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

      n 1: a country on the northeastern coast of Central America on
           the Caribbean; formerly under British control [syn:
           Belize, British Honduras]

From CIA World Factbook 2002 :

     Introduction Belize
                              Background: Territorial disputes between the UK
                                          and Guatemala delayed the
                                          independence of Belize (formerly
                                          British Honduras) until 1981.
                                          Guatemala refused to recognize the
                                          new nation until 1992. Tourism has
                                          become the mainstay of the economy.
                                          The country remains plagued by high
                                          unemployment, growing involvement in
                                          the South American drug trade, and
                                          increased urban crime.
     Geography Belize
                                Location: Middle America, bordering the
                                          Caribbean Sea, between Guatemala and
                  Geographic coordinates: 17 15 N, 88 45 W
                          Map references: Central America and the Caribbean
                                    Area: total: 22,966 sq km
                                          water: 160 sq km
                                          land: 22,806 sq km
                      Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Massachusetts
                         Land boundaries: total: 516 km
                                          border countries: Guatemala 266 km,
                                          Mexico 250 km
                               Coastline: 386 km
                         Maritime claims: exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
                                          territorial sea: 12 NM in the north,
                                          3 NM in the south; note - from the
                                          mouth of the Sarstoon River to
                                          Ranguana Cay, Belize's territorial
                                          sea is 3 NM; according to Belize's
                                          Maritime Areas Act, 1992, the
                                          purpose of this limitation is to
                                          provide a framework for the
                                          negotiation of a definitive
                                          agreement on territorial differences
                                          with Guatemala
                                 Climate: tropical; very hot and humid; rainy
                                          season (May to November); dry season
                                          (February to May)
                                 Terrain: flat, swampy coastal plain; low
                                          mountains in south
                      Elevation extremes: lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
                                          highest point: Victoria Peak 1,160 m
                       Natural resources: arable land potential, timber, fish,
                                Land use: arable land: 2.81%
                                          permanent crops: 1.1%
                                          other: 96.1% (1998 est.)
                          Irrigated land: 30 sq km (1998 est.)
                         Natural hazards: frequent, devastating hurricanes
                                          (June to November) and coastal
                                          flooding (especially in south)
            Environment - current issues: deforestation; water pollution from
                                          sewage, industrial effluents,
                                          agricultural runoff; solid and
                                          sewage waste disposal
              Environment - international party to: Biodiversity, Climate
                              agreements: Change, Desertification, Endangered
                                          Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of
                                          the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection,
                                          Ship Pollution, Wetlands
                                          signed, but not ratified: none of
                                          the selected agreements
                        Geography - note: only country in Central America
                                          without a coastline on the North
                                          Pacific Ocean
     People Belize
                              Population: 262,999 (July 2002 est.)
                           Age structure: 0-14 years: 41.6% (male 55,716;
                                          female 53,581)
                                          15-64 years: 54.9% (male 73,068;
                                          female 71,368)
                                          65 years and over: 3.5% (male 4,511;
                                          female 4,755) (2002 est.)
                  Population growth rate: 2.65% (2002 est.)
                              Birth rate: 31.08 births/1,000 population (2002
                              Death rate: 4.6 deaths/1,000 population (2002
                      Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002
                               Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
                                          under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
                                          15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
                                          65 years and over: 0.95 male(s)/
                                          total population: 1.03 male(s)/
                                          female (2002 est.)
                   Infant mortality rate: 24.31 deaths/1,000 live births (2002
                Life expectancy at birth: total population: 71.46 years
                                          female: 73.87 years (2002 est.)
                                          male: 69.17 years
                    Total fertility rate: 3.96 children born/woman (2002 est.)
        HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 2.01% (1999 est.)
       HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/ 2,400 (1999 est.)
                       HIV/AIDS - deaths: 170 (1999 est.)
                             Nationality: noun: Belizean(s)
                                          adjective: Belizean
                           Ethnic groups: mestizo 48.7%, Creole 24.9%, Maya
                                          10.6%, Garifuna 6.1%, other 9.7%
                               Religions: Roman Catholic 49.6%, Protestant 27%
                                          (Anglican 5.3%, Methodist 3.5%,
                                          Mennonite 4.1%, Seventh-Day
                                          Adventist 5.2%, Pentecostal 7.4%,
                                          Jehovah's Witnesses 1.5%), none
                                          9.4%, other 14% (2000)
                               Languages: English (official), Spanish, Mayan,
                                          Garifuna (Carib), Creole
                                Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read
                                          and write
                                          total population: 70.3%
                                          male: 70.3%
                                          female: 70.3% (1991 est.)
                                          note: other sources list the
                                          literacy rate as high as 75%
     Government Belize
                            Country name: conventional long form: none
                                          conventional short form: Belize
                                          former: British Honduras
                         Government type: parliamentary democracy
                                 Capital: Belmopan
                Administrative divisions: 6 districts; Belize, Cayo, Corozal,
                                          Orange Walk, Stann Creek, Toledo
                            Independence: 21 September 1981 (from UK)
                        National holiday: Independence Day, 21 September
                            Constitution: 21 September 1981
                            Legal system: English law
                                Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
                        Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II
                                          (since 6 February 1952), represented
                                          by Governor General Sir Colville
                                          YOUNG, Sr. (since 17 November 1993)
                                          head of government: Prime Minister
                                          Said Wilbert MUSA (since 27 August
                                          1998); Deputy Prime Minister John
                                          BRICENO (since 1 September 1998)
                                          cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the
                                          governor general on the advice of
                                          the prime minister
                                          elections: none; the monarch is
                                          hereditary; governor general
                                          appointed by the monarch; governor
                                          general appoints the member of the
                                          House of Representatives who is
                                          leader of the majority party to be
                                          prime minister
                      Legislative branch: bicameral National Assembly consists
                                          of the Senate (12 members appointed
                                          by the governor general - six on the
                                          advice of the prime minister, three
                                          on the advice of the leader of the
                                          opposition, and one each on the
                                          advice of the Belize Council of
                                          Churches and Evangelical Association
                                          of Churches, the Belize Chamber of
                                          Commerce and Industry and the Belize
                                          Better Business Bureau, and the
                                          National Trade Union Congress and
                                          the Civil Society Steering
                                          Committee; members are appointed for
                                          five-year terms) and the House of
                                          Representatives (29 seats; members
                                          are elected by direct popular vote
                                          to serve five-year terms)
                                          elections: House of Representatives
                                          - last held 27 August 1998 (next to
                                          be held by NA August 2003)
                                          election results: percent of vote by
                                          party - PUP 59.2%, UDP 40.8%; seats
                                          by party - PUP 26, UDP 3
                         Judicial branch: Supreme Court (the chief justice is
                                          appointed by the governor general on
                                          the advice of the prime minister)
           Political parties and leaders: People's United Party or PUP [Said
                                          MUSA]; United Democratic Party or
                                          UDP [Dean BARROW, party leader;
                                          Douglas SINGH, party chairman]
            Political pressure groups and Society for the Promotion of
                                 leaders: Education and Research or SPEAR
                                          [Diane HAYLOCK]; United Worker's
               International organization ACP, C, Caricom, CDB, ECLAC, FAO, G-
                           participation: 77, IADB, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM,
                                          IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF,
                                          IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ITU, LAES,
                                          NAM, OAS, OPANAL, UN, UNCTAD,
                                          UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WHO, WIPO,
                                          WMO, WTrO
     Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Lisa M.
                                          consulate(s) general: Los Angeles
                                          FAX: [1] (202) 332-6888
                                          telephone: [1] (202) 332-9636
                                          chancery: 2535 Massachusetts Avenue
                                          NW, Washington, DC 20008
       Diplomatic representation from the chief of mission: Ambassador Russell
                                      US: F. FREEMAN
                                          embassy: 29 Gabourel Lane and Hutson
                                          Street, Belize City
                                          mailing address: P. O. Box 286, Unit
                                          7401, APO AA 34025
                                          telephone: [501] (2) 77161
                                          FAX: [501] (2) 30802
                        Flag description: blue with a narrow red stripe along
                                          the top and the bottom edges;
                                          centered is a large white disk
                                          bearing the coat of arms; the coat
                                          of arms features a shield flanked by
                                          two workers in front of a mahogany
                                          tree with the related motto SUB
                                          UMBRA FLOREO (I Flourish in the
                                          Shade) on a scroll at the bottom,
                                          all encircled by a green garland
     Economy Belize
                      Economy - overview: The small, essentially private
                                          enterprise economy is based
                                          primarily on agriculture, agro-based
                                          industry, and merchandising, with
                                          tourism and construction assuming
                                          greater importance. Sugar, the chief
                                          crop, accounts for nearly half of
                                          exports, while the banana industry
                                          is the country's largest employer.
                                          The government's expansionary
                                          monetary and fiscal policies,
                                          initiated in September 1998, led to
                                          GDP growth of 6.4% in 1999 and 10.5%
                                          in 2000. Growth decelerated in 2001
                                          to 3% due to the global slowdown and
                                          severe hurricane damage to
                                          agriculture, fishing, and tourism.
                                          Major concerns continue to be the
                                          rapidly expanding trade deficit and
                                          foreign debt. A key short-term
                                          objective remains the reduction of
                                          poverty with the help of
                                          international donors.
                                     GDP: purchasing power parity - $830
                                          million (2001 est.)
                  GDP - real growth rate: 3% (2001 est.)
                        GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $3,250
                                          (2001 est.)
             GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 18%
                                          industry: 24%
                                          services: 58% (2001 est.)
           Population below poverty line: 33% (1999 est.)
       Household income or consumption by lowest 10%: NA%
                        percentage share: highest 10%: NA%
        Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1.7% (2001 est.)
                             Labor force: 90,000
                                          note: shortage of skilled labor and
                                          all types of technical personnel
                                          (1997 est.)
             Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 27%, industry 18%,
                                          services 55% (2001 est.)
                       Unemployment rate: 11.5% (2000)
                                  Budget: revenues: $186 million
                                          expenditures: $253 million,
                                          including capital expenditures of
                                          $NA (2000 est.)
                              Industries: garment production, food processing,
                                          tourism, construction
       Industrial production growth rate: 4.6% (1999)
                Electricity - production: 192 million kWh (2000)
      Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 58.33%
                                          hydro: 41.67%
                                          other: 0% (2000)
                                          nuclear: 0%
               Electricity - consumption: 178.56 million kWh (2000)
                   Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2000)
                   Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2000)
                  Agriculture - products: bananas, coca, citrus, sugarcane;
                                          lumber; fish, cultured shrimp
                                 Exports: $239.6 million (f.o.b., 2001 est.)
                   Exports - commodities: sugar, bananas, citrus, clothing,
                                          fish products, molasses, wood
                      Exports - partners: EU 45% (UK 33%), US 42%, Caricom 6%,
                                          Canada 1% (1999)
                                 Imports: $505 million (c.i.f., 2001 est.)
                   Imports - commodities: machinery and transportation
                                          equipment, manufactured goods; food,
                                          beverages, tobacco; fuels,
                                          chemicals, pharmaceuticals
                      Imports - partners: US 51%, Mexico 12%, Central America
                                          5%, UK 4% (1999)
                         Debt - external: $500 million (2000 est.)
                Economic aid - recipient: $NA
                                Currency: Belizean dollar (BZD)
                           Currency code: BZD
                          Exchange rates: Belizean dollars per US dollar -
                                          2.0000 (fixed rate pegged to the US
                             Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March
     Communications Belize
          Telephones - main lines in use: 31,000 (1997)
            Telephones - mobile cellular: 3,023 (1997)
                        Telephone system: general assessment: above-average
                                          domestic: trunk network depends
                                          primarily on microwave radio relay
                                          international: satellite earth
                                          station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic
                Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 12, shortwave 0 (1998)
                                  Radios: 133,000 (1997)
           Television broadcast stations: 2 (1997)
                             Televisions: 41,000 (1997)
                   Internet country code: .bz
       Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 2 (2000)
                          Internet users: 15,000 (2000)
     Transportation Belize
                                Railways: 0 km
                                Highways: total: 2,880 km
                                          paved: 490 km
                                          unpaved: 2,390 km (1998 est.)
                               Waterways: 825 km (river network used by
                                          shallow-draft craft; seasonally
                       Ports and harbors: Belize City, Big Creek, Corozol,
                                          Punta Gorda
                         Merchant marine: total: 315 ships (1,000 GRT or over)
                                          totaling 1,240,551 GRT/1,761,168 DWT
                                          ships by type: bulk 26, cargo 204,
                                          chemical tanker 6, combination ore/
                                          oil 1, container 12, passenger/cargo
                                          1, petroleum tanker 39, refrigerated
                                          cargo 15, roll on/roll off 8, short-
                                          sea passenger 1, specialized tanker
                                          1, vehicle carrier 1
                                          note: includes some foreign-owned
                                          ships registered here as a flag of
                                          convenience: Albania 2, Belgium 3,
                                          British Virgin Islands 6, Cambodia
                                          1, China 38, Cyprus 1, Ecuador 1,
                                          Egypt 1, Equatorial Guinea 1,
                                          Eritrea 1, Estonia 7, Germany 3,
                                          Greece 4, Grenada 1, Honduras 1,
                                          Hong Kong 20, Indonesia 6, Italy 2,
                                          Japan 4, Jordan 1, Lebanon 1,
                                          Liberia 5, Malaysia 3, Malta 2, Man,
                                          Isle of 1, Marshall Islands 13,
                                          Mexico 1, Netherlands 1, Nigeria 1,
                                          Panama 12, Philippines 4, Portugal
                                          1, Romania 1, Russia 3, Saint
                                          Vincent and the Grenadines 3, Saudi
                                          Arabia 1, Singapore 22, South Korea
                                          10, Spain 4, Switzerland 1, Taiwan
                                          1, Thailand 6, Tunisia 1, Turkey 1,
                                          Ukraine 3, United Arab Emirates 9,
                                          United Kingdom 2, United States 4,
                                          Virgin Islands (UK) 6, Yemen 1 (2002
                                Airports: 44 (2001)
           Airports - with paved runways: total: 4
                                          1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
                                          914 to 1,523 m: 1
                                          under 914 m: 2 (2001)
         Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 40
                                          2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
                                          914 to 1,523 m: 10
                                          under 914 m: 29 (2001)
     Military Belize
                       Military branches: Belize Defense Force (includes Army,
                                          Maritime Wing, Air Wing, and
                                          Volunteer Guard)
        Military manpower - military age: 18 years of age (2002 est.)
        Military manpower - availability: males age 15-49: 64,909 (2002 est.)
     Military manpower - fit for military males age 15-49: 38,472 (2002 est.)
             Military manpower - reaching males: 2,847 (2002 est.)
                   military age annually:
           Military expenditures - dollar $7.7 million (FY00/01)
       Military expenditures - percent of 1.87% (FY00/01)
     Transnational Issues Belize
                Disputes - international: the "Line of Adjacency" established
                                          in 2000 as an agreed limit to check
                                          squatters settling in Belize,
                                          remains in place while the
                                          Organization of American States
                                          (OAS) assists states to resolve
                                          Guatemalan territorial claims in
                                          Belize and Guatemalan maritime
                                          access to the Caribbean Sea;
                                          Honduras claims the Sapodilla Cays
                                          off the coast of Belize
                           Illicit drugs: major transshipment point for
                                          cocaine; small-scale illicit
                                          producer of cannabis for the
                                          international drug trade; minor
                                          money-laundering center

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