Montenegro

 

The use of the name Montenegro began in the 15th century when the Crnojevic dynasty began to rule the Serbian principality of Zeta; over subsequent centuries Montenegro was able to maintain its independence from the Ottoman Empire. From the 16th to 19th centuries, Montenegro became a theocracy ruled by a series of bishop princes; in 1852, it was transformed into a secular principality. After World War I, Montenegro was absorbed by the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes, which became the Kingdom of Yugoslavia in 1929; at the conclusion of World War II, it became a constituent republic of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

 

When the latter dissolved in 1992, Montenegro federated with Serbia, first as the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and, after 2003, in a looser union of Serbia and Montenegro. In May 2006, Montenegro invoked its right under the Constitutional Charter of Serbia and Montenegro to hold a referendum on independence from the state union. The vote for severing ties with Serbia exceeded 55% – the threshold set by the EU – allowing Montenegro to formally declare its independence on 3 June 2006.

 

Geography:
Location: South-eastern Europe, between the Adriatic Sea and Serbia
Geographic coordinates: 42 30 N, 19 18 E
People:
Population: 657,394 (July 2012 est.)
Population growth rate:  -0.633% (2012 est.)
Government:
Country name: conventional long form: none

conventional short form: Montenegro

local long form: none

local short form: Crna Gora

former: People’s Republic of Montenegro, Socialist Republic of Montenegro, Republic of Montenegro

Government type: republic
Capital: name: Podgorica

geographic coordinates: 42 26 N, 19 16 E

time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

daylight saving time: +1 hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

Communications:
Telephones – main lines in use: 169,500 (2009)
Telephones – mobile cellular: 1.17 million (2009)
Transportation:
Airports: 5 (2012)
Airports – with paved runways: total: 5

2,438 to 3,047 m: 2

1,524 to 2,437 m: 1

914 to 1,523 m: 1 

under 914 m: 1 (2012)

Military:
Military service age and obligation: compulsory national military service abolished August 2006
Military – note: Montenegrin plans call for the establishment of a fully professional armed forces

Economy:

Montenegro severed its economy from federal control and from Serbia during the MILOSEVIC era and maintained its own central bank, used the euro instead of the Yugoslav dinar as official currency, collected customs tariffs, and managed its own budget. The dissolution of the loose political union between Serbia and Montenegro in 2006 led to separate membership in several international financial institutions, such as the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

 

On 18 January 2007, Montenegro joined the World Bank and IMF. Montenegro is pursuing its own membership in the World Trade Organization as well as negotiating a Stabilization and Association agreement with the European Union in anticipation of eventual membership. Severe unemployment remains a key political and economic problem for this entire region. Montenegro has privatized its large aluminium complex – the dominant industry – as well as most of its financial sector, and has begun to attract foreign direct investment in the tourism sector.

Transnational Issues:

Disputes – international: none
Refugees and internally displaced persons: refugees (country of origin): 10,948 (Kosovo) (2010);note – mostly ethnic Serbs and Roma who fled Kosovo in 1999

IDPs: 16,192 (ethnic conflict in 1999 and riots in 2004) (2007)

Map: