Guatemala By Jane & Miranda
Population • Estimated Population: 13,276,517(July 2010) • Ethnic Groups: (2001) • Mestizo & European: 59.4% • Mayan: 40.3% • K’iche: 9.1% • Kaqchikel: 8.4% • Mam: 7.9% • Q’ueqchi: 6.3% • Other Mayan: 8.6% • Indigenous (Non-Mayan): 0.2% • Age Structure: • 0-14 years: 39.4% • 15-64 years: 56.8% • 65+ years: 3.8% • Languages: • Spanish: 60% • Amerindian Languages: 40% • (23 recognized Amerindian languages)
Demographics Spread of Wealth • Guatemala has the highest GDP of all Central America, but there is a very unequal distribution of wealth, one of the worst in the world • 10% of the population owns nearly all of the national wealth, but the poorest 10% own less than 1%. There is a very small middle class in Guatemala • Rapid population growth has lead Guatemala to have one of the highest poverty rates. More than 75% of the population is below the poverty line, especially the rural and indigenous people Unemployment: 3.20% unemployment rate
Guatemala’s Main Industries Main exports from Guatemala: • coffee • Women's and girl’s blouses, shirts • cane/beet sugar • solid, pure sucrose
Leadership & Government Guatemala is a Social Democratic Republic, lead by President Alvaro Colom Colonial History: • The Maya cultures flourished in Guatemala until the Spanish arrived in 1523 • Guatemala gained their independence from Spain on September 15, 1821
Important Historical Events As noted previously, Guatemala gained their independence from Spain on September 15, 1821 General Jorge Ubico’s dictatorship was overthrown by the “October Revolutionaries” Guatemalan Civil War: 1960-1996 (36 years)
Current Issues in Guatemala Drug Trafficking • Drug trafficking is a severe and growing problem in Guatemala. Drugs such as cocaine and opium are often either produced or carried through Guatemala Crime • Guatemala has one of the highest violent crime rates in Latin America Environment and Deforestation • 50% of the forests in Guatemala have been destroyed, thus leading to soil erosion • Most recently, there was a horrible land and mudslide in Guatemala as the result of soil erosion that killed and buried many people. President Alvaro Colom has deemed it a National Emergency.
U.S. Relations Traditionally friendly, strained in past U.S. helps to stop transnational crimes in Guatemala encourages the institutionalization of democracy and use of peace accords, human rights and the rule of law.
Bibliography http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1129.html http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1129.html http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2045.htm https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/gt.html http://www.nationsencyclopedia.com/economies/Americas/Guatemala-POVERTY-AND-WEALTH.html http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2045.htm https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/gt.html http://data.un.org/CountryProfile.aspx?crName=Guatemala