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Costa Rica - Statistics & Facts

Demographics and History

Costa Rica is a country located in Central America, bordering Nicaragua to the North, and Panama to the Southeast. It has a population of roughly 5 million people, with the youth accounting for nearly 21 percent of the country’s inhabitants. Over the last decade, population growth has decreased significantly, while the country experienced a rising death rate as well as a decrease in the fertility rate.

Costa Rica was first colonized in the 16th century by Spain, from which it gained its independence in early 19th century, following the Spanish defeat in the Mexican War of Independence when the authorities in Guatemala declared independence of all Central America. The official and predominant language is Spanish. Moreover, other local indigenous languages are spoken by Costa Ricans.

Costa Rican economy

Economically speaking, the country is neither remarkably rich nor as poor as many of its neighbors. Gross domestic product amounted to about 61.8 billion U.S. dollars in 2020 - the same year, Costa Rica experienced a strong negative economic growth of more than four percent amidst the crisis provoked by the coronavirus pandemic. The service industry accounts for nearly two-thirds of GDP, with commerce, finance, and tourism being the main generating branches of this sector. Services also employ a large share of the population. Despite attracting a high number of tourists each year, travel and tourism accounted directly and indirectly for about five percent of the nation's GDP, far from the relevance that the sector has in other countries of the region such as Uruguay and Mexico.

As far as the agricultural production goes, Costa Rica is focused mainly on the production of sugar, coffee, and bananas. Agricultural products account for about 41 percent of the total value of exports. More than half is achieved by the manufacturing industry, with food products, machinery, and electronic products being the main items manufactured for export. Due to limited mineral resources, Costa Rica is dependent on importing fuels, which resulted in the country having a trade deficit for quite some time. The main trade partner of Costa Rica is, for both exports and imports, the United States.

Rising debt levels

Despite having experienced a stable economic growth in recent years, Costa Rica's economy still faces challenges due to a rising public deficit and a rising public debt. Still, the country is not as highly dependent on remittances as some other Latin American states.

Interesting statistics

In the following 4 chapters, you will quickly find the 37 most important statistics relating to "Costa Rica".

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