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The World Factbook provides information on the history, people and society, government, economy, energy, geography, communications, transportation, military, and transnational issues for 267 world entities. The Reference tab includes: a variety of world, regional, country, ocean, and time zone maps; Flags of the World; and a Country Comparison function that ranks the country information and data in more than 75 Factbook fields.
What's New section
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September 12, 2019
Did you know that the twin cities of Tegucigalpa and Comayaguela in Honduras, jointly, constitute the capital of the country? However, virtually all governmental institutions are on the Tegucigalpa side, which in practical terms makes Tegucigalpa the capital. Other countries with dual official national capital cities include: Benin, Bolivia, Burundi, Cote d'Ivoire, Eswatini, Sri Lanka, and Tanzania. South Africa has three capital cities.
September 03, 2019
The World Factbook Staff tries to keep up with scheduled elections in every country. However, election dates sometimes get changed unexpectedly. For example, earlier this year, the Bolivian Government moved the date of its national parliamentary elections from 27 October - the same date of elections as in Argentina and Uruguay - to 20 October to ensure that Bolivians residing in those countries are able to vote at polling locations in those countries.
August 29, 2019
In the People and Society category for all countries, the former "Health Expenditures" field has been replaced with a "Current Health Expenditures" (CHE) entry that is calculated differently. An explanation of the new CHE field appears on the Definitions and Notes page, under the References tab.
August 22, 2019
Ten new Travel Facts have been added to the website. Included are nine countries (Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Mongolia, Papua New Guinea, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Tonga, Uganda, Uruguay, Zimbabwe) and one dependency (Greenland). The total number of available Travel Facts has now reached 164!
August 15, 2019
In light of recent events in the Persian Gulf, The World Factbook has added a special statement to the "Maritime threats" entry (in the Military and Security category) for Iran, Oman, and the Indian Ocean that warns of dangers to commercial shipping in the waters off the Iranian coast and around the Arabian Peninsula.
August 08, 2019
Have you ever been stumped by one of the quiz questions that appeared in What's New? Have you ever wondered at how many people use The World Factbook or how the Factbook's logo developed? Answers to all of these questions and many more may be found on the Did You Know? page - under the About tab.
August 01, 2019
New Travel Facts pages for nine countries and one overseas territory - Grenada, Honduras, Hungary, Malta, Monaco, Nicaragua, Tanzania, Ukraine, Zambia, and Gibraltar - have been added to the website. The total number of entities with Travel Facts pages is now up to 154.
July 25, 2019
All of The World Factbook's Travel Facts and One-Page Country Summaries can now be accessed from two new links on the lower left of the home page. Individual country Travel Facts and One-Page Summaries will continue to be accessible from country pages. More Travel Facts - in addition to the already extensive selection - will be available soon.
July 18, 2019
In the Military category, the "Maritime Threats" field, has been updated with final 2018 numbers for all countries where seagoing piracy is a problem. Overall, there was a more than 10% increase in incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships during 2018 (201) when compared to 2017 (180). The waters off the coast of West Africa are the most dangerous in the world at present; attacks in 2018 more than doubled over 2017. Entries have been added for Benin and Ghana both of which saw significant increases in attacks when compared to recent years. Attacks off the Horn of Africa remain at very low levels, continuing the trend of the last few years. The Straits of Malacca and South China Sea remain areas of high risk of attack, as well as parts of the Sulu and Celebes Seas in the vicinity of the southern Philippines.
July 11, 2019
A fourth tranche of the ever-popular country comparison maps has been uploaded onto the site, which means that almost 85% of the world's countries are now displayed in comparison to the United States. To see the relative size of a country shown superimposed over part of the US, go to the Geography section and check under "Area – comparative" (the fifth geography entry). Eventually, all country descriptions will include these useful and celebrated maps.