Armenia

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Source: https://www.cia.gov/library/publicat...k/geos/am.html

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PAGE LAST UPDATED ON NOVEMBER 15, 2011
Flag of Armenia
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Location of Armenia
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Map of Armenia
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Photos of Armenia
 
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OF ARMENIA
 

Introduction

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Armenia prides itself on being the first nation to formally adopt Christianity (early 4th century). Despite periods of autonomy, over the centuries Armenia came under the sway of various empires including the Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Persian, and Ottoman. During World War I in the western portion of Armenia, Ottoman Turkey instituted a policy of forced resettlement coupled with other harsh practices that resulted in an estimated 1 million Armenian deaths. The eastern area of Armenia was ceded by the Ottomans to Russia in 1828; this portion declared its independence in 1918, but was conquered by the Soviet Red Army in 1920. Armenian leaders remain preoccupied by the long conflict with Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh, a primarily Armenian-populated region, assigned to Soviet Azerbaijan in the 1920s by Moscow. Armenia and Azerbaijan began fighting over the area in 1988; the struggle escalated after both countries attained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. By May 1994, when a cease-fire took hold, ethnic Armenian forces held not only Nagorno-Karabakh but also a significant portion of Azerbaijan proper. The economies of both sides have been hurt by their inability to make substantial progress toward a peaceful resolution. Turkey closed the common border with Armenia in 1994 because of the Armenian separatists' control of Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding areas, further hampering Armenian economic growth. In 2009, senior Armenian leaders began pursuing rapprochement with Turkey, aiming to secure an opening of the border; this process is currently dormant.
 
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Geography

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Southwestern Asia, between Turkey (to the west) and Azerbaijan
 
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40 00 N, 45 00 E
 
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total: 29,743 sq km
country comparison to the world: 143
land: 28,203 sq km
water: 1,540 sq km
 
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slightly smaller than Maryland
 
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total: 1,254 km
border countries: Azerbaijan-proper 566 km, Azerbaijan-Naxcivan exclave 221 km, Georgia 164 km, Iran 35 km, Turkey 268 km
 
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0 km (landlocked)
 
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none (landlocked)
 
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highland continental, hot summers, cold winters
 
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Armenian Highland with mountains; little forest land; fast flowing rivers; good soil in Aras River valley
 
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lowest point: Debed River 400 m
highest point: Aragats Lerrnagagat' 4,090 m
 
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small deposits of gold, copper, molybdenum, zinc, bauxite
 
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arable land: 16.78%
permanent crops: 2.01%
other: 81.21% (2005)
 
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2,740 sq km (2008)
 
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10.5 cu km (1997)
 
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total: 2.95 cu km/yr (30%/4%/66%)
per capita: 977 cu m/yr (2000)
 
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occasionally severe earthquakes; droughts
 
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soil pollution from toxic chemicals such as DDT; the energy crisis of the 1990s led to deforestation when citizens scavenged for firewood; pollution of Hrazdan (Razdan) and Aras Rivers; the draining of Sevana Lich (Lake Sevan), a result of its use as a source for hydropower, threatens drinking water supplies; restart of Metsamor nuclear power plant in spite of its location in a seismically active zone
 
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party to: Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants
 
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landlocked in the Lesser Caucasus Mountains; Sevana Lich (Lake Sevan) is the largest lake in this mountain range
 
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People and Society

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noun: Armenian(s)
adjective: Armenian
 
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Armenian 97.9%, Yezidi (Kurd) 1.3%, Russian 0.5%, other 0.3% (2001 census)
 
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Armenian (official) 97.7%, Yezidi 1%, Russian 0.9%, other 0.4% (2001 census)
 
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Armenian Apostolic 94.7%, other Christian 4%, Yezidi (monotheist with elements of nature worship) 1.3%
 
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2,967,975 (July 2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 138
 
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0-14 years: 17.6% (male 279,304/female 242,621)
15-64 years: 72.4% (male 1,006,312/female 1,141,430)
65 years and over: 10.1% (male 112,947/female 185,361) (2011 est.)
 
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total: 32.2 years
male: 29.5 years
female: 35 years (2011 est.)
 
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0.063% (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 188
 
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12.85 births/1,000 population (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 156
 
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8.46 deaths/1,000 population (July 2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 86
 
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-3.76 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 187
 
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urban population: 64% of total population (2010)
rate of urbanization: 0.5% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
 
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YEREVAN (capital) 1.11 million (2009)
 
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at birth: 1.124 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.15 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.88 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.62 male(s)/female
total population: 0.89 male(s)/female (2011 est.)
 
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29 deaths/100,000 live births (2008)
country comparison to the world: 114
 
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total: 18.85 deaths/1,000 live births
country comparison to the world: 101
male: 23.38 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 13.75 deaths/1,000 live births (2011 est.)
 
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total population: 73.23 years
country comparison to the world: 120
male: 69.59 years
female: 77.31 years (2011 est.)
 
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1.37 children born/woman (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 204
 
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4.7% of GDP (2009)
country comparison to the world: 144
 
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3.697 physicians/1,000 population (2007)
country comparison to the world: 21
 
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4.07 beds/1,000 population (2007)
country comparison to the world: 47
 
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improved:
urban: 98% of population
rural: 93% of population
total: 96% of population
unimproved:
urban: 2% of population
rural: 7% of population
total: 4% of population (2008)
 
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improved:
urban: 95% of population
rural: 80% of population
total: 90% of population
unimproved:
urban: 5% of population
rural: 20% of population
total: 10% of population (2008)
 
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0.1% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 110
 
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1,900 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 136
 
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fewer than 100 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 151
 
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4.2% (2005)
country comparison to the world: 92
 
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3% of GDP (2007)
country comparison to the world: 133
 
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definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 99.4%
male: 99.7%
female: 99.2% (2001 census)
 
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total: 12 years
male: 12 years
female: 13 years (2009)
 
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total: 57.6%
country comparison to the world: 1
male: 47.2%
female: 69.4% (2007)
 
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Government

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conventional long form: Republic of Armenia
conventional short form: Armenia
local long form: Hayastani Hanrapetut'yun
local short form: Hayastan
former: Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic, Armenian Republic
 
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republic
 
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name: Yerevan
geographic coordinates: 40 10 N, 44 30 E
time difference: UTC+4 (9 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
 
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11 provinces (marzer, singular - marz); Aragatsotn, Ararat, Armavir, Geghark'unik', Kotayk', Lorri, Shirak, Syunik', Tavush, Vayots' Dzor, Yerevan
 
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21 September 1991 (from the Soviet Union)
 
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Independence Day, 21 September (1991)
 
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adopted by nationwide referendum 5 July 1995; amendments adopted through a nationwide referendum 27 November 2005
 
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civil law system
 
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has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
 
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18 years of age; universal
 
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chief of state: President Serzh SARGSIAN (since 9 April 2008)
head of government: Prime Minister Tigran SARGSIAN (since 9 April 2008)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the prime minister
(For more information visit the World Leaders website Opens in New Window)
elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 19 February 2008 (next to be held in February 2013); prime minister appointed by the president based on majority or plurality support in parliament; the prime minister and Council of Ministers must resign if the National Assembly refuses to accept their program
election results: Serzh SARGSIAN elected president; percent of vote - Serzh SARGSIAN 52.9%, Levon TER-PETROSSIAN 21.5%, Artur BAGHDASARIAN 16.7%, other 8.9%
 
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unicameral National Assembly (Parliament) or Azgayin Zhoghov (131 seats; members elected by popular vote, 90 members elected by party list and 41 by direct vote; to serve five-year terms)
elections: last held on 12 May 2007 (next to be held in the spring of 2012)
election results: percent of vote by party - HHK 33.9%, Prosperous Armenia 15.1%, ARF (Dashnak) 13.2%, Rule of Law 7.1%, Heritage Party 6%, other 24.7%; seats by party - HHK 64, Prosperous Armenia 18, ARF (Dashnak) 16, Rule of Law 9, Heritage Party 7, independent 17
 
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Constitutional Court; Court of Cassation (Appeals Court)
 
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Armenian National Congress or ANC (bloc of independent and opposition parties) [Levon TER-PETROSSIAN]; Armenian National Movement or ANM [Ararat ZURABIAN]; Armenian Revolutionary Federation ("Dashnak" Party) or ARF [Hrant MARKARIAN]; Heritage Party [Raffi HOVHANNISIAN]; People's Party of Armenia [Stepan DEMIRCHIAN]; Prosperous Armenia [Gagik TSARUKIAN]; Republican Party of Armenia or HHK [Serzh SARGSIAN]; Rule of Law Party (Orinats Yerkir) [Artur BAGHDASARIAN]
 
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Aylentrank (Impeachment Alliance) [Nikol PASHINIAN]; Yerkrapah Union [Manvel GRIGORIAN]
 
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ADB, BSEC, CE, CIS, CSTO, EAEC (observer), EAPC, EBRD, FAO, GCTU, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, MIGA, NAM (observer), OAS (observer), OIF, OPCW, OSCE, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
 
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chief of mission: Ambassador Tatoul MARKARIAN
chancery: 2225 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 319-1976
FAX: [1] (202) 319-2982
consulate(s) general: Los Angeles
 
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chief of mission: Ambassador Marie L. YOVANOVITCH
embassy: 1 American Ave., Yerevan 0082
mailing address: American Embassy Yerevan, US Department of State, 7020 Yerevan Place, Washington, DC 20521-7020
telephone: [374](10) 464-700
FAX: [374](10) 464-742
 
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three equal horizontal bands of red (top), blue, and orange; the color red recalls the blood shed for liberty, blue the Armenian skies as well as hope, and orange the land and the courage of the workers who farm it
 
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Mount Ararat; eagle; lion
 
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name: "Mer Hayrenik""(Our Fatherland)
lyrics/music: Mikael NALBANDIAN/Barsegh KANACHYAN
note: adopted 1991; based on the anthem of the Democratic Republic of Armenia (1918-1922) but with different lyrics
 
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Economy

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After several years of double-digit economic growth, Armenia faced a severe economic recession with GDP declining more than 14% in 2009, despite large loans from multilateral institutions. Sharp declines in the construction sector and workers' remittances, particularly from Russia, were the main reasons for the downturn. The economy began to recover in 2010 with nearly 5% growth. Under the old Soviet central planning system, Armenia developed a modern industrial sector, supplying machine tools, textiles, and other manufactured goods to sister republics, in exchange for raw materials and energy. Armenia has since switched to small-scale agriculture and away from the large agroindustrial complexes of the Soviet era. Armenia has managed to reduce poverty, slash inflation, stabilize its currency, and privatize most small- and medium-sized enterprises. Since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991, Armenia had made progress in implementing some economic reforms, including privatization, price reforms, and prudent fiscal policies, but geographic isolation, a narrow export base, and pervasive monopolies in important business sectors have made Armenia particularly vulnerable to the sharp deterioration in the global economy and the economic downturn in Russia. The conflict with Azerbaijan over the ethnic Armenian-dominated region of Nagorno-Karabakh contributed to a severe economic decline in the early 1990s and Armenia's borders with Turkey remain closed. Armenia is particularly dependent on Russian commercial and governmental support and most key Armenian infrastructure is Russian-owned and/or managed, especially in the energy sector. The electricity distribution system was privatized in 2002 and bought by Russia's RAO-UES in 2005. Construction of a pipeline to deliver natural gas from Iran to Armenia was completed in December 2008, and gas deliveries are slated to expand due to the April 2010 completion of the Yerevan Thermal Power Plant. Armenia has some mineral deposits (copper, gold, bauxite). Pig iron, unwrought copper, and other nonferrous metals are Armenia's highest valued exports. Armenia's severe trade imbalance has been offset somewhat by international aid, remittances from Armenians working abroad, and foreign direct investment. Armenia joined the WTO in January 2003. The government made some improvements in tax and customs administration in recent years, but anti-corruption measures have been ineffective and the current economic downturn has led to a sharp drop in tax revenue and forced the government to accept large loan packages from Russia, the IMF, and other international financial institutions. Armenia will need to pursue additional economic reforms in order to regain economic growth and improve economic competitiveness and employment opportunities, especially given its economic isolation from two of its nearest neighbors, Turkey and Azerbaijan.
 
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$16.86 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 133
$16.43 billion (2009 est.)
$19.14 billion (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars
 
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$9.389 billion (2010 est.)
 
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2.6% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 135
-14.2% (2009 est.)
6.9% (2008 est.)
 
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$5,700 (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 141
$5,500 (2009 est.)
$6,400 (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars
 
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agriculture: 17.4%
industry: 37%
services: 45.6% (2010 est.)
 
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1.481 million (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 131
 
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agriculture: 46.2%
industry: 15.6%
services: 38.2% (2006 est.)
 
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7.1% (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 74
 
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26.5% (2006 est.)
 
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lowest 10%: 3.7%
highest 10%: 25.4% (2008)
 
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30.9 (2008)
country comparison to the world: 112
44.4 (1996)
 
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33.6% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 21
 
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revenues: $2.023 billion
expenditures: $2.486 billion (2010 est.)
 
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21.5% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 145
 
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-4.9% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 144
 
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8.2% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 193
3.4% (2009 est.)
 
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NA% (31 December 2009)
country comparison to the world: 45
7.25% (2 December 2008)
note: this is the Refinancing Rate, the key monetary policy instrument of the Armenian National Bank
 
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19.2% (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 30
18.763% (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$1.201 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 137
$1.029 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$3.708 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 131
$3.21 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$2.485 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 128
$1.666 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$27.99 million (31 December 2010)
country comparison to the world: 116
$140.5 million (31 December 2009)
$176 million (31 December 2008)
 
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fruit (especially grapes), vegetables; livestock
 
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diamond-processing, metal-cutting machine tools, forging-pressing machines, electric motors, tires, knitted wear, hosiery, shoes, silk fabric, chemicals, trucks, instruments, microelectronics, jewelry manufacturing, software development, food processing, brandy
 
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8% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 44
 
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5.863 billion kWh (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 109
 
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4.986 billion kWh (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 112
 
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360 million kWh; note - exports an unknown quantity to Georgia; includes exports to Nagorno-Karabakh region in Azerbaijan (2008 est.)
 
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17 million kWh; note - imports an unknown quantity from Iran (2008 est.)
 
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0 bbl/day (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 129
 
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52,000 bbl/day (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 98
 
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0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 150
 
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46,680 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 89
 
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0 bbl (1 January 2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 103
 
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0 cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 95
 
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1.86 billion cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 80
 
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0 cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 51
 
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1.86 billion cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 47
 
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0 cu m (1 January 2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 107
 
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-$1.3 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 146
-$1.326 billion (2009 est.)
 
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$1.113 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 151
$722.3 million (2009 est.)
 
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pig iron, unwrought copper, nonferrous metals, diamonds, mineral products, foodstuffs, energy
 
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Russia 15.9%, Bulgaria 15.5%, Germany 13.1%, Netherlands 9.8%, US 8.2%, Belgium 7.2%, Iran 5.2%, Georgia 5% (2010)
 
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$3.255 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 136
$2.817 billion (2009 est.)
 
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natural gas, petroleum, tobacco products, foodstuffs, diamonds
 
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Russia 22.1%, China 10.7%, Ukraine 6.1%, Iran 5.7%, Germany 5.6%, Turkey 5.6% (2010)
 
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$1.866 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 120
$2.004 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$6.965 billion (30 June 2011)
country comparison to the world: 101
$5.227 billion (30 June 2010)
 
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drams (AMD) per US dollar -
374.29 (2010)
363.28 (2009)
303.93 (2008)
344.06 (2007)
414.69 (2006)
 
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Communications

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589,900 (2010)
country comparison to the world: 92
 
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3.865 million (2010)
country comparison to the world: 112
 
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general assessment: telecommunications investments have made major inroads in modernizing and upgrading the outdated telecommunications network inherited from the Soviet era; now 100% privately owned and undergoing modernization and expansion; mobile-cellular services monopoly terminated in late 2004 and a second provider began operations in mid-2005
domestic: reliable modern fixed-line and mobile-cellular services are available across Yerevan in major cities and towns; significant but ever-shrinking gaps remain in mobile-cellular coverage in rural areas
international: country code - 374; Yerevan is connected to the Trans-Asia-Europe fiber-optic cable through Iran; additional international service is available by microwave radio relay and landline connections to the other countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States, through the Moscow international switch, and by satellite to the rest of the world; satellite earth stations - 3 (2010)
 
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2 public television networks operating alongside more than 40 privately-owned television stations that provide local to near nationwide coverage; major Russian broadcast stations are widely available; subscription cable TV services are available in most regions; Public Radio of Armenia is a national, state-run broadcast network that operates alongside about 20 privately-owned radio stations; several major international broadcasters are available (2008)
 
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.am
 
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65,279 (2010)
country comparison to the world: 83
 
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208,200 (2009)
country comparison to the world: 138
 
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Transportation

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11 (2010)
country comparison to the world: 156
 
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total: 10
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
1,524 to 2,437 m: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2010)
 
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total: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2010)
 
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gas 2,233 km (2010)
 
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total: 869 km
country comparison to the world: 96
broad gauge: 869 km 1.520-m gauge (818 km electrified)
note: some lines are out of service (2010)
 
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total: 8,888 km
country comparison to the world: 139
paved: 7,079 km (includes 1,561 km of expressways)
unpaved: 1,809 km (2008)
 
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Military

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Armenian Armed Forces: Ground Forces, Air Force and Air Defense; "Nagorno-Karabakh Republic": Nagorno-Karabakh Self-Defense Force (NKSDF) (2011)
 
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18-27 years of age for voluntary or compulsory military service; 2-year conscript service obligation (2010)
 
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males age 16-49: 805,847
females age 16-49: 854,296 (2010 est.)
 
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males age 16-49: 644,372
females age 16-49: 717,272 (2010 est.)
 
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male: 23,470
female: 21,417 (2010 est.)
 
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2.8% of GDP (2010)
country comparison to the world: 50
 
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Transnational Issues

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the dispute over the break-away Nagorno-Karabakh region and the Armenian military occupation of surrounding lands in Azerbaijan remains the primary focus of regional instability; residents have evacuated the former Soviet-era small ethnic enclaves in Armenia and Azerbaijan; Turkish authorities have complained that blasting from quarries in Armenia might be damaging the medieval ruins of Ani, on the other side of the Arpacay valley; in 2009, Swiss mediators facilitated an accord reestablishing diplomatic ties between Armenia and Turkey, but neither side has ratified the agreement and the rapprochement effort has faltered; local border forces struggle to control the illegal transit of goods and people across the porous, undemarcated Armenian, Azerbaijani, and Georgian borders; ethnic Armenian groups in Javakheti region of Georgia seek greater autonomy from the Georgian Government
 
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refugees (country of origin): 113,295 (Azerbaijan)
IDPs: 8,400 (conflict with Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh, majority have returned home since 1994 ceasefire) (2007)
 
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illicit cultivation of small amount of cannabis for domestic consumption; minor transit point for illicit drugs - mostly opium and hashish - moving from Southwest Asia to Russia and to a lesser extent the rest of Europe
 
 
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