Australia - Oceania :: Micronesia, Federated States of
  • Introduction :: Micronesia, Federated States of
  • Background:

    The Caroline Islands are a widely scattered archipelago in the western Pacific Ocean; they became part of a UN Trust Territory under US administration following World War II. The eastern four island groups adopted a constitution in 1979 and chose to become the Federated States of Micronesia. (The westernmost island group became Palau.) Independence came in 1986 under a Compact of Free Association (COFA) with the US, which was amended and renewed in 2004. Present concerns include large-scale unemployment, overfishing, overdependence on US foreign aid, and state perception of inequitable allocation of US aid.

    As a signatory to the COFA with the US, Micronesians enjoy the right to migrate to and settle in any part of the US and its territories - this privilege reduces stresses on the island economy and the environment.

  • Geography :: Micronesia, Federated States of
  • Location:
    Oceania, island group in the North Pacific Ocean, about three-quarters of the way from Hawaii to Indonesia
    Geographic coordinates:
    6 55 N, 158 15 E
    Map references:
    Oceania
    Area:
    total: 702 sq km
    land: 702 sq km
    water: 0 sq km (fresh water only)

    note: includes Pohnpei (Ponape), Chuuk (Truk) Islands, Yap Islands, and Kosrae (Kosaie)

    country comparison to the world: 192
    Area - comparative:
    four times the size of Washington, DC (land area only)
    Land boundaries:
    0 km
    Coastline:
    6,112 km
    Maritime claims:
    territorial sea: 12 nm
    exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
    Climate:
    tropical; heavy year-round rainfall, especially in the eastern islands; located on southern edge of the typhoon belt with occasionally severe damage
    Terrain:
    islands vary geologically from high mountainous islands to low, coral atolls; volcanic outcroppings on Pohnpei, Kosrae, and Chuuk
    Elevation:
    0 m lowest point: Pacific Ocean
    782 highest point: Nanlaud on Pohnpei
    Natural resources:
    timber, marine products, deep-seabed minerals, phosphate
    Land use:
    agricultural land: 25.5% (2011 est.)
    arable land: 2.3% (2011 est.) / permanent crops: 19.7% (2011 est.) / permanent pasture: 3.5% (2011 est.)
    forest: 74.5% (2011 est.)
    other: 0% (2011 est.)
    Irrigated land:
    0 sq km NA (2012)
    Population distribution:
    the majority of the populaton lives in the coastal areas of the high islands; the mountainous interior is largely uninhabited; less than half of the population lives in urban areas
    Natural hazards:
    typhoons (June to December)
    Environment - current issues:
    overfishing, climate change, water pollution, solid waste disposal; toxic pollution
    Environment - international agreements:
    party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection
    signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
    Geography - note:
    composed of four major island groups totaling 607 islands
  • People and Society :: Micronesia, Federated States of
  • Population:
    103,643 (July 2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 194
    Nationality:
    noun: Micronesian(s)
    adjective: Micronesian; Chuukese, Kosraen(s), Pohnpeian(s), Yapese
    Ethnic groups:
    Chuukese/Mortlockese 49.3%, Pohnpeian 29.8%, Kosraean 6.3%, Yapese 5.7%, Yap outer islanders 5.1%, Polynesian 1.6%, Asian 1.4%, other 0.8% (2010 est.)
    Languages:
    English (official and common language), Chuukese, Kosrean, Pohnpeian, Yapese, Ulithian, Woleaian, Nukuoro, Kapingamarangi
    Religions:
    Roman Catholic 54.7%, Protestant 41.1% (includes Congregational 38.5%, Baptist 1.1%, Seventh Day Adventist 0.8%, Assembly of God 0.7%), Mormon 1.5%, other 1.9%, none 0.7%, unspecified 0.1% (2010 est.)
    Age structure:
    0-14 years: 29.81% (male 15,707 /female 15,186)
    15-24 years: 19.38% (male 10,068 /female 10,020)
    25-54 years: 39.57% (male 19,799 /female 21,208)
    55-64 years: 7.09% (male 3,574 /female 3,777)
    65 years and over: 4.15% (male 1,943 /female 2,361) (2018 est.)
    population pyramid: population pyramid
    Dependency ratios:
    total dependency ratio: 62.4 (2015 est.)
    youth dependency ratio: 55.3 (2015 est.)
    elderly dependency ratio: 7.1 (2015 est.)
    potential support ratio: 14.1 (2015 est.)
    Median age:
    total: 25.5 years
    male: 24.7 years
    female: 26.2 years (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 156
    Population growth rate:
    -0.55% (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 223
    Birth rate:
    19.6 births/1,000 population (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 80
    Death rate:
    4.2 deaths/1,000 population (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 208
    Net migration rate:
    -20.9 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 220
    Population distribution:
    the majority of the populaton lives in the coastal areas of the high islands; the mountainous interior is largely uninhabited; less than half of the population lives in urban areas
    Urbanization:
    urban population: 22.7% of total population (2018)
    rate of urbanization: 1.05% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
    Major urban areas - population:
    7,000 PALIKIR (capital) (2018)
    Sex ratio:
    at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female (2017 est.)
    0-14 years: 1.03 male(s)/female (2017 est.)
    15-24 years: 1.01 male(s)/female (2017 est.)
    25-54 years: 0.94 male(s)/female (2017 est.)
    55-64 years: 0.97 male(s)/female (2017 est.)
    65 years and over: 0.81 male(s)/female (2017 est.)
    total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2017 est.)
    Maternal mortality rate:
    100 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 72
    Infant mortality rate:
    total: 19.1 deaths/1,000 live births (2018 est.)
    male: 21.2 deaths/1,000 live births (2018 est.)
    female: 16.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 81
    Life expectancy at birth:
    total population: 73.4 years (2018 est.)
    male: 71.3 years (2018 est.)
    female: 75.6 years (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 137
    Total fertility rate:
    2.37 children born/woman (2018 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 83
    Health expenditures:
    13.7% of GDP (2014)
    country comparison to the world: 5
    Physicians density:
    0.19 physicians/1,000 population (2009)
    Hospital bed density:
    3.2 beds/1,000 population (2009)
    Drinking water source:
    improved: urban: 94.8% of population (2015 est.)
    rural: 87.4% of population (2015 est.)
    total: 89% of population (2015 est.)
    unimproved: urban: 5.2% of population (2015 est.)
    rural: 12.6% of population (2015 est.)
    total: 11% of population (2015 est.)
    Sanitation facility access:
    improved: urban: 85.1% of population (2015 est.)
    rural: 49% of population (2015 est.)
    total: 57.1% of population (2015 est.)
    unimproved: urban: 14.9% of population (2015 est.)
    rural: 51% of population (2015 est.)
    total: 42.9% of population (2015 est.)
    HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
    NA
    HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
    NA
    HIV/AIDS - deaths:
    NA
    Major infectious diseases:

    note: active local transmission of Zika virus by Aedes species mosquitoes has been identified in this country (as of August 2016); it poses an important risk (a large number of cases possible) among US citizens if bitten by an infective mosquito; other less common ways to get Zika are through sex, via blood transfusion, or during pregnancy, in which the pregnant woman passes Zika virus to her fetus

    Obesity - adult prevalence rate:
    45.8% (2016)
    country comparison to the world: 10
    Education expenditures:
    12.5% of GDP (2015)
    country comparison to the world: 2
  • Government :: Micronesia, Federated States of
  • Country name:
    conventional long form: Federated States of Micronesia
    conventional short form: none
    local long form: Federated States of Micronesia
    local short form: none
    former: New Philippines; Caroline Islands; Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, Ponape, Truk, and Yap Districts
    abbreviation: FSM
    etymology: the term "Micronesia" is a 19th-century construct of two Greek words, "micro" (small) and "nesoi" (islands), and refers to thousands of small islands in the western Pacific Ocean
    Government type:
    federal republic in free association with the US
    Capital:
    name: Palikir
    geographic coordinates: 6 55 N, 158 09 E
    time difference: UTC+11 (16 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

    note: Micronesia has two time zones

    Administrative divisions:
    4 states; Chuuk (Truk), Kosrae (Kosaie), Pohnpei (Ponape), Yap
    Independence:
    3 November 1986 (from the US-administered UN trusteeship)
    National holiday:
    Constitution Day, 10 May (1979)
    Constitution:
    history: drafted June 1975, ratified 1 October 1978, entered into force 10 May 1979 (2018)
    amendments: proposed by Congress, by a constitutional convention, or by public petition; passage requires approval by at least three-fourths majority of votes in at least three-fourths of the states; note – at least every 10 years as part of a general or special election, voters are asked whether to hold a constitution convention; a majority of affirmative votes is required to proceed; amended 1990 (2018)
    International law organization participation:
    has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
    Citizenship:
    citizenship by birth: no
    citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of FSM
    dual citizenship recognized: no
    residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years
    Suffrage:
    18 years of age; universal
    Executive branch:
    chief of state: President Peter M. CHRISTIAN (since 11 May 2015); Vice President Yosiwo P. GEORGE (since 11 May 2015); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government
    head of government: President Peter M. CHRISTIAN (since 11 May 2015); Vice President Yosiwo P. GEORGE (since 11 May 2015)
    cabinet: Cabinet includes the vice president and the heads of the 8 executive departments
    elections/appointments: president and vice president indirectly elected by Congress from among the 4 'at large' senators for a 4-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 11 May 2015 (next to be held in 2019)
    election results: Peter M. CHRISTIAN elected president by Congress; Yosiwo P. GEORGE elected vice president
    Legislative branch:
    description: unicameral Congress (14 seats; 10 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote to serve 2-year terms and 4 at- large members directly elected from each of the 4 states by proportional representation vote to serve 4-year terms)
    elections: last held on 7 March 2017 (next to be held in March 2019)
    election results: percent of vote - NA; seats - independent 14
    Judicial branch:
    highest courts: Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) Supreme Court (consists of the chief justice and not more than 5 associate justices and organized into appellate and criminal divisions)
    judge selection and term of office: justices appointed by the president of the Federated States of Micronesia with the approval of two-thirds of Congress; justices appointed for life
    subordinate courts: the highest state-level courts are: Chuuk Supreme Court; Korsae State Court; Pohnpei State Court; Yap State Court
    Political parties and leaders:
    no formal parties
    International organization participation:
    ACP, ADB, AOSIS, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFC, IFRCS, IMF, IOC, IOM, IPU, ITSO, ITU, MIGA, OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, SPC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, WHO, WMO
    Diplomatic representation in the US:
    chief of mission: Ambassador Akillino Harris SUSAIA (since 24 April 2017)
    chancery: 1725 N Street NW, Washington, DC 20036
    telephone: [1] (202) 223-4383
    FAX: [1] (202) 223-4391
    consulate(s) general: Honolulu (HI), Tamuning (Guam)
    Diplomatic representation from the US:
    chief of mission: Ambassador Robert Annan RILEY III (since 16 August 2016)
    embassy: 101 Upper Pics Road, Kolonia
    mailing address: P. O. Box 1286, Kolonia, Pohnpei, 96941; U.S. Embassy in Micronesia, 4120 Kolonia Place, Washington, D.C. 20521-4120
    telephone: [691] 320-2187
    FAX: [691] 320-2186
    Flag description:
    light blue with four white five-pointed stars centered; the stars are arranged in a diamond pattern; blue symbolizes the Pacific Ocean, the stars represent the four island groups of Chuuk, Kosrae, Pohnpei, and Yap
    National symbol(s):
    four, five-pointed, white stars on a light blue field; national colors: light blue, white
    National anthem:
    name: Patriots of Micronesia
    lyrics/music: unknown

    note: adopted 1991; also known as "Across All Micronesia"; the music is based on the 1820 German patriotic song "Ich hab mich ergeben", which was the West German national anthem from 1949-1950; variants of this tune are used in Johannes Brahms' "Festival Overture" and Gustav Mahler's "Third Symphony"

  • Economy :: Micronesia, Federated States of
  • Economy - overview:

    Economic activity consists largely of subsistence farming and fishing, and government, which employs two-thirds of the adult working population and receives funding largely - 58% in 2013 – from Compact of Free Association assistance provided by the US. The islands have few commercially valuable mineral deposits. The potential for tourism is limited by isolation, lack of adequate facilities, and limited internal air and water transportation.

    Under the terms of the original Compact, the US provided $1.3 billion in grants and aid from 1986 to 2001. The US and the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) negotiated a second (amended) Compact agreement in 2002-03 that took effect in 2004. The amended Compact runs for a 20-year period to 2023; during which the US will provide roughly $2.1 billion to the FSM. The amended Compact also develops a trust fund for the FSM that will provide a comparable income stream beyond 2024 when Compact grants end.

    The country's medium-term economic outlook appears fragile because of dependence on US assistance and lackluster performance of its small and stagnant private sector.

    GDP (purchasing power parity):
    $348 million (2017 est.)
    $341.1 million (2016 est.)
    $331.4 million (2015 est.)

    note: data are in 2017 dollars

    country comparison to the world: 215
    GDP (official exchange rate):
    $328 million (2017 est.) (2017 est.)
    GDP - real growth rate:
    2% (2017 est.)
    2.9% (2016 est.)
    3.9% (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 153
    GDP - per capita (PPP):
    $3,400 (2017 est.)
    $3,300 (2016 est.)
    $3,200 (2015 est.)

    note: data are in 2017 dollars

    country comparison to the world: 189
    GDP - composition, by end use:
    household consumption: 83.5% (2013 est.)
    government consumption: 48.4% (2016 est.)
    investment in fixed capital: 29.5% (2016 est.)
    investment in inventories: 1.9% (2016 est.)
    exports of goods and services: 27.5% (2016 est.)
    imports of goods and services: -77% (2016 est.)
    GDP - composition, by sector of origin:
    agriculture: 26.3% (2013 est.)
    industry: 18.9% (2013 est.)
    services: 54.8% (2013 est.)
    Agriculture - products:
    taro, yams, coconuts, bananas, cassava (manioc, tapioca), sakau (kava), Kosraen citrus, betel nuts, black pepper, fish, pigs, chickens
    Industries:
    tourism, construction; specialized aquaculture, craft items (shell and wood)
    Industrial production growth rate:
    NA
    Labor force:
    37,920 (2010 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 200
    Labor force - by occupation:
    agriculture: 93.9% (2013 est.)
    industry: 5.2% (2013 est.)
    services: 93.9% (2013 est.)

    note: two-thirds of the labor force are government employees

    Unemployment rate:
    16.2% (2010 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 177
    Population below poverty line:
    26.7% (2000 est.)
    Household income or consumption by percentage share:
    lowest 10%: NA
    highest 10%: NA
    Distribution of family income - Gini index:
    61.1 (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 3
    Budget:
    revenues: 213.8 million (FY12/13 est.)
    expenditures: 192.1 million (FY12/13 est.)
    Taxes and other revenues:
    65.2% (of GDP) (FY12/13 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 7
    Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-):
    6.6% (of GDP) (FY12/13 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 4
    Public debt:
    24.5% of GDP (2017 est.)
    25.3% of GDP (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 176
    Fiscal year:
    1 October - 30 September
    Inflation rate (consumer prices):
    0.5% (2017 est.)
    0.5% (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 28
    Commercial bank prime lending rate:
    15.73% (31 December 2017 est.)
    15.7% (31 December 2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 34
    Stock of narrow money:
    $NA (31 December 2016)
    $44.07 million (31 December 2015 est.)
    $196 million (31 December 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 190
    Stock of broad money:
    $178.3 million (31 December 2015 est.)
    $225.2 million (31 December 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 189
    Stock of domestic credit:
    $56.98 million (31 December 2017 est.)
    -$103 million (31 December 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 189
    Market value of publicly traded shares:

    NA

    Current account balance:
    $12 million (2017 est.)
    $11 million (2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 63
    Exports:
    $88.3 million (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 197
    Exports - commodities:
    fish, sakau (kava), betel nuts, black pepper
    Imports:
    $258.5 million (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 205
    Imports - commodities:
    food, beverages, clothing, computers, household electronics, appliances, manufactured goods, automobiles, machinery and equipment, furniture, tools
    Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
    $203.7 million (31 December 2017 est.)
    $135.1 million (31 December 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 174
    Debt - external:
    $93.6 million (2013 est.)
    $93.5 million (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 194
    Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
    $15.8 million (2013 est.)
    $34.4 million (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 139
    Exchange rates:

    the US dollar is used

  • Energy :: Micronesia, Federated States of
  • Electricity access:
    population without electricity: 42,934 (2012)
    electrification - total population: 59% (2012)
    electrification - urban areas: 100% (2012)
    electrification - rural areas: 45% (2012)
    Electricity - production:
    192 million kWh (2002)
    country comparison to the world: 189
    Electricity - consumption:
    178.6 million kWh (2002)
    country comparison to the world: 192
    Electricity - exports:
    0 kWh (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 170
    Electricity - imports:
    0 kWh (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 173
    Electricity - installed generating capacity:
    18,000 kW (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 205
    Electricity - from fossil fuels:
    96% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 49
    Electricity - from nuclear fuels:
    0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 143
    Electricity - from hydroelectric plants:
    1% of total installed capacity (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 146
    Electricity - from other renewable sources:
    3% of total installed capacity (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 110
    Crude oil - production:
    0 bbl/day (2014)
    country comparison to the world: 171
    Crude oil - exports:
    0 bbl/day (2014)
    country comparison to the world: 164
    Crude oil - imports:
    0 bbl/day (2014)
    country comparison to the world: 166
    Crude oil - proved reserves:
    0 bbl (1 January 2014)
    country comparison to the world: 169
    Refined petroleum products - production:
    0 bbl/day (2014)
    country comparison to the world: 178
    Refined petroleum products - exports:
    0 bbl/day
    country comparison to the world: 183
    Natural gas - production:
    0 cu m (2014)
    country comparison to the world: 171
    Natural gas - proved reserves:
    0 cu m
    country comparison to the world: 172
    Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy:
    105 Mt (2010 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 214
  • Communications :: Micronesia, Federated States of
  • Telephones - fixed lines:
    total subscriptions: 6,947 (2017 est.)
    subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 7 (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 202
    Telephones - mobile cellular:
    total subscriptions: 23,114 (2017 est.)
    subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 22 (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 209
    Telephone system:
    general assessment: adequate system (2016)
    domestic: islands interconnected by shortwave radiotelephone (used mostly for government purposes), satellite (Intelsat) ground stations, and some coaxial and fiber-optic cable; mobile-cellular service available on the major islands (2016)
    international: country code - 691; satellite earth stations - 5 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean); in 2015, Fiber Optic was launched and is the primary communication path to the outside world (2016)
    Broadcast media:
    no TV broadcast stations; each state has a multi-channel cable service with TV transmissions carrying roughly 95% imported programming and 5% local programming; about a half-dozen radio stations (2009)
    Internet country code:
    .fm
    Internet users:
    total: 33,000 (July 2016 est.)
    percent of population: 31.5% (July 2016 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 202
    Broadband - fixed subscriptions:
    total: 3,776 (2017 est.)
    subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 4 (2017 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 179
  • Transportation :: Micronesia, Federated States of
  • Civil aircraft registration country code prefix:
    V6 (2016)
    Airports:
    6 (2013)
    country comparison to the world: 173
    Airports - with paved runways:
    total: 6 (2017)
    1,524 to 2,437 m: 4 (2017)
    914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2017)
    Roadways:
    total: 388 km (2015)
    paved: 184 km (2015)
    unpaved: 204 km (2015)
    country comparison to the world: 201
    Merchant marine:
    total: 88 (2017)
    by type: bulk carrier 2, general cargo 63, oil tanker 6, other 17 (2017)
    country comparison to the world: 90
    Ports and terminals:
    major seaport(s): Colonia (Tamil Harbor), Molsron Lele Harbor, Pohnepi Harbor
  • Military and Security :: Micronesia, Federated States of
  • Military branches:
    no regular military forces (2012)
    Military - note:
    defense is the responsibility of the US
  • Transnational Issues :: Micronesia, Federated States of
  • Disputes - international:
    none
    Illicit drugs:
    major consumer of cannabis