Micronesia

 

In 1979 the Federated States of Micronesia, a UN Trust Territory under US administration, adopted a constitution. In 1986 independence was attained under a Compact of Free Association with the US, which was amended and renewed in 2004. Present concerns include large-scale unemployment, overfishing, and overdependence on US aid.

 

Geography:
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
People:
Population: 106,487 (July 2012 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 33.6% (male 18,223/female 17,639)

15-64 years:  63.4% (male 33,566/female 34,215)

65 years and over: 3% (male 1,375/female 1,818) (2011 est.)

Government:
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: Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, Ponape, Truk, and Yap Districts

abbreviation: FSM

Government type: constitutional government in free association with the US; the Compact of Free Association entered into force 3 November 1986 and the Amended Compact entered into force May 2004
Capital: name: Palikir

geographic coordinates: 6 55 N, 158 09 E

time difference: UTC+11 (16 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Communications:
Telephones – main lines in use: 8,500 (2009)
Telephones – mobile cellular: 27,500 (2009)
Transportation:
Airports: 6 (2012)
Airports – with paved runways: total: 6

1,524 to 2,437 m: 4

914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2012)

Military:
Military branches: no regular military forces
Manpower available for military service: Males age 16-49: 26,712 (2010 est.)

Economy:

Economic activity consists primarily of subsistence farming and fishing. The islands have few mineral deposits worth exploiting, except for high-grade phosphate. The potential for a tourist industry exists, but the remote location, a lack of adequate facilities, and limited air connections hinder development. Under the original terms of the Compact of Free Association, the US provided $1.3 billion in grant aid during the period 1986-2001; the level of aid has been subsequently reduced.

 

The Amended Compact of Free Association with the US guarantees the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) millions of dollars in annual aid through 2023, and establishes a Trust Fund into which the US and the FSM make annual contributions in order to provide annual pay-outs to the FSM in perpetuity after 2023. The country’s medium-term economic outlook appears fragile due not only to the reduction in US assistance but also to the current slow growth of the private sector.

Transnational Issues:

Disputes – international: none
Illicit drugs: major consumer of cannabis