OFFICIAL NAME: Federated States of Micronesia
CAPITAL: Palikir on Pohnpei Island
SYSTEM OF GOVERNMENT: Federal Republic
AREA: 702 Sq Km (271 Sq Mi)
ESTIMATED 2000 POPULATION 121,500
LOCATION AND GEOGRAPHY: The Federated States of Micronesia
consist of four major island groups or states, Pohnpei,
Chuuk (formerly Truk), Kosrae and Yap which are located
in the North Pacific Ocean. The territory is made up of
607 islands and atolls, of which 40 are a significant size.
Most of the islands are of coral formation either being
atolls with a series of islets and a lagoon or low flat
coral pancakes. Yap is at the southern end of a great submarine
ridge and volcanic outcropping has occurred in the five
largest island clusters. Major Cities (pop. est.); Weno
15,300, Tol 19,200, Kolonia 6,200 (1989). Land Use; forested
23%, pastures 14%, agricultural-cultivated 34%, other 29%
CLIMATE: Micronesia has a tropical climate that is heavily influenced
by the NE trade winds which prevail from November to December and April
to May. The trade winds bring frequent heavy rainfall and average temperature
ranges are from 26 to 27 degrees Celsius (79 to 81 degrees Fahrenheit)
PEOPLE: The people of the Federated States of Micronesia are
broadly categorized as Melanesians, although in a narrower sense they are
Carolinian. Most of the people consider themselves Yapese, Turkese, etc..
due to their strong local affinity as opposed to a national or ethnic affinity.
DEMOGRAPHIC/VITAL STATISTICS: Density; 158 persons per sq km
(410 persons per sq mi) (1991). Urban-Rural; 19.4% urban, 80.6% rural (1980).
Sex Distribution; 51.1% male, 48.9% female (1980). Life Expectancy at Birth;
64.0 years male, 68.1 years female (1985). Age Breakdown; 46% under 15,
27% 15 to 29, 13% 30 to 44, 9% 45 to 59, 4% 60 to 74, 1% 75 and over (1980).
Birth Rate; 30.6 per 1,000 (1985). Death Rate; 3.6 per 1,000 (1985). Increase
Rate; 27.0 per 1,000 (1985). Infant Mortality Rate; 52.2 per 1,000 live
RELIGIONS: Mostly Christians and mainly Roman Catholic or Protestant.
Other minorities include Seven Day Adventists, Jehovah Witnesses and the
Assembly of God followers. In some areas local native tribal beliefs are
still quite strong.
LANGUAGES: The national language is English, although several
indigenous languages which belong to the Malayo-Polynesian family of languages
are also spoken.
EDUCATION: Aged 25 or over and having attained: no formal schooling
24.8%, incomplete primary 38.2%, primary 11.7%, incomplete secondary 7.7%,
secondary 9.6%, higher 8.0% (1980). Literacy; literate population aged
15 or over 30,074 or 76.7% (1980).
MODERN HISTORY - WWII TO 1993: In 1947 the UN established the
Pacific Islands Trust Territory which was placed under US control. In the
1960's moves began towards preparing Micronesia for self government and
in a July 1978 referendum of the trust territory states, Pohnpei, Kosrae,
Truk, and Yap voted in favor of a common constitution under which the Federated
States of Micronesia would be internally self-governing while the US maintained
defense responsibilities. In Nov. 1986 US administration of the Federated
States of Micronesia formally ended when the Federated States of Micronesia
signed a "Compact of Free Association" with the US and began
to receive US aid for the duration of the 15 year agreement. In July 1991
Pohnpei hosted the South Pacific Forum. In Aug. 1991 the UN security council
accepted the FSM's application for UN membership which became effective
Sept. 17, 1991. Also in 1991 Pres. John Haglelgam had to resign after losing
his state senatorial election and was succeeded by Bailey Olter who was
elected by the National Congress. In 1992 the US granted the FSM concession
import tariffs and exempt import-quota requirements for their tuna fishing
industry following talks between Pres. Olter and US Pres. Bush in Washington
DC. Also in 1992 the US gave emergency aid to the island of Chuuk following
severe water shortages as a result of sustained drought. In July 1993 the
FSM became a member of the IMF. In 1993 Pres. Olter signed a cooperation
agreement with China following his visit and 34 islanders from Kosrae requested
compensation from the US for health problems relating to the nuclear tests
carried out in the region in the 1950s.
CURRENCY: The official currency is the US Dollar (USD) divided
into 100 Cents.
ECONOMY: Gross National Product; USD $157,400,000 (1989). Public
Debt; USD $128,800,000 (1994). Imports; USD $109,486,000 (1993). Exports;
USD $29,169,000 (1993). Tourism Receipts; N/A. Balance of Trade; USD -$80,300,000
(1993). Economically Active Population; 30,500 or 60.6% of total population
(1990). Unemployed; 13.5% (1990).
MAIN TRADING PARTNERS: Its main trading partners are the USA
MAIN PRIMARY PRODUCTS: Copra, Fish, Livestock, Phosphates.
MAJOR INDUSTRIES: Agriculture, Canning, Coconut Oil Extraction,
Fishing, Garment Manufacture, Soap Manufacture, Tourism.
MAIN EXPORTS: Copra, Fish, Handicrafts.
TRANSPORT: Railroads; nil. Roads; length 226 km (140 mi) (1990).
Vehicles; N/A. Merchant Marine; N/A. Air Transport; N/A.
COMMUNICATIONS: Daily Newspapers; nil. Radio; receivers 70,000
(1993). Television; receivers 7,000 (1993). Telephones; units 6,015 (1993).
MILITARY: Nil (see Modern History).