Tonga Population: 106,398


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Tonga - unique among Pacific nations - never completely lost its indigenous governance. The archipelagos of "The Friendly Islands" were united into a Polynesian kingdom in 1845. Tonga became a constitutional monarchy in 1875 and a British protectorate in 1900; it withdrew from the protectorate and joined the Commonwealth of Nations in 1970. Tonga remains the only monarchy in the Pacific; in 2008, King George TUPOU V announced he was relinquishing most of his powers leading up to parliamentary elections in 2010. TUPOU died in 2012 and was succeeded by his brother 'Aho'eitu TUPOU VI. Tropical Cyclone Gita, the strongest-ever recorded storm to impact Tonga, hit the islands in February 2018 causing extensive damage.

    The western islands (making up the Tongan Volcanic Arch) are all of volcanic origin; the eastern islands are nonvolcanic and are composed of coral limestone and sand
Location: Oceania, archipelago in the South Pacific Ocean, about two-thirds of the way from Hawaii to New Zealand
Geographic coordinates: 20 00 S, 175 00 W
Area: total: 747 sq km
land: 717 sq km
water: 30 sq km

Size comparison: four times the size of Washington, DC
Land Boundaries: 0 km
Coastline: 419 km
Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
Climate: tropical; modified by trade winds; warm season (December to May), cool season (May to December)
Terrain: mostly flat islands with limestone bedrock formed from uplifted coral formation; others have limestone overlying volcanic rock
Natural resources: arable land, fish
Land use: agricultural land: 43.1% (2011 est.) arable land: 22.2% (2011 est.)
permanent crops: 15.3% (2011 est.) permanent pasture: 5.6% (2011 est.) forest: 12.5% (2011 est.)
other: 44.4% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land: 0 sq km (2012)
Natural hazards: cyclones (October to April); earthquakes and volcanic activity on Fonuafo'ou volcanism: moderate volcanic activity; Fonualei (180 m) has shown frequent activity in recent years, while Niuafo'ou (260 m), which last erupted in 1985, has forced evacuations; other historically active volcanoes include Late and Tofua
Current Environment Issues: deforestation from land being cleared for agriculture and settlement; soil exhaustion; water pollution due to salinization, sewage, and toxic chemicals from farming activities; coral reefs and marine populations threatened
International Environment Agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
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Nationality: noun: Tongan(s)
adjective: Tongan
Ethnic groups: Tongan 97%, part-Tongan 0.8%, other 2.2%, unspecified (2016 est.)
Languages: Tongan and English 76.8%, Tongan, English, and other language 10.6%, Tongan only (official) 8.7%, English only (official) 0.7%, other 1.7%, none 2.2% (2016 est.) note: data represent persons aged 5 and older who can read and write a simple sentence in Tongan, English, or another language
Religions: Protestant 64.1% (includes Free Wesleyan Church 35%, Free Church of Tonga 11.9%, Church of Tonga 6.8%, Assembly of God 2.3%, Seventh Day Adventist 2.2%, Tokaikolo Christian Church 1.6%, other 4.3%), Mormon 18.6%, Roman Catholic 14.2%, other 2.4%, none 0.5%, unspecified 0.1% (2016 est.)
Population: 106,398 (July 2018 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 33.26% (male 17,979 /female 17,404)
15-24 years: 19.69% (male 10,725 /female 10,223)
25-54 years: 34.69% (male 18,436 /female 18,469)
55-64 years: 5.81% (male 3,098 /female 3,089)
65 years and over: 6.56% (male 3,140 /female 3,835) (2018 est.)
Dependency ratios: total dependency ratio: 74.2 (2015 est.)
youth dependency ratio: 63.9 (2015 est.)
elderly dependency ratio: 10.2 (2015 est.)
potential support ratio: 9.8 (2015 est.)
Median age: total: 23.3 years
male: 22.9 years
female: 23.8 years (2018 est.)
Population growth rate: -0.1% (2018 est.)
Birth rate: 21.8 births/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Death rate: 4.9 deaths/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Net migration rate: -17.9 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Urbanization: urban population: 23.1% of total population (2018)
rate of urbanization: 0.71% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Major urban areas - population: 23,000 NUKU'ALOFA (2018)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.82 male(s)/female
total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2018 est.)

Mother's mean age at first birth: 24.9 years (2012 est.) note: median age at first birth among women 25-49
Maternal mortality rate: 124 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
Infant mortality rate: total: 10.9 deaths/1,000 live births male: 11.3 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 10.5 deaths/1,000 live births (2018 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 76.6 years male: 75 years
female: 78.3 years (2018 est.)
Total fertility rate: 3.03 children born/woman (2018 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate: 34.1% (2012)
Physicians density: 0.52 physicians/1,000 population (2013)
Hospital bed density: 2.6 beds/1,000 population (2010)
Drinking water source: improved:
urban: 99.7% of population
rural: 99.6% of population
total: 99.6% of population

urban: 0.3% of population
rural: 0.4% of population
total: 0.4% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility access: improved:
urban: 97.6% of population (2015 est.)
rural: 89% of population (2015 est.)
total: 91% of population (2015 est.)

urban: 2.4% of population (2015 est.)
rural: 11% of population (2015 est.)
total: 9% of population (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: n/a
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: n/a
HIV/AIDS - deaths: n/a
Obesity - adult prevalence rate: 48.2% (2016)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight: 1.9% (2012)
Education expenditures: n/a
Literacy: definition: can read and write Tongan and/or English (2015 est.)
total population: 99.4%
male: 99.3%
female: 99.4% (2015 est.)
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Country name: conventional long form: Kingdom of Tonga
conventional short form: Tonga
local long form: Pule'anga Fakatu'i 'o Tonga
local short form: Tonga
former: Friendly Islands
etymology: "tonga" means "south" in the Tongan language and refers to the country's geographic position in relation to central Polynesia
Government type: constitutional monarchy
Capital: name: Nuku'alofa
geographic coordinates: 21 08 S, 175 12 W
time difference: UTC+13 (18 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins first Sunday in November; ends second Sunday in January
Administrative divisions: 5 island divisions; 'Eua, Ha'apai, Ongo Niua, Tongatapu, Vava'u
Independence: 4 June 1970 (from UK protectorate)
National holiday: Official Birthday of King TUPOU VI, 4 July (1959); note - actual birthday of the monarch is 12 July 1959; 4 July (2015) is the day the king was crownedConstitution Day (National Day), 4 November (1875)
Constitution: history: adopted 4 November 1875 amendments: proposed by the Legislative Assembly; passage requires approval by the Assembly in each of three readings, the unanimous approval of the Privy Council (a high-level advisory body to the monarch), the Cabinet, and assent to by the monarch; revised 1988; amended many times, last in 2016 (2018)
Legal system: English common law
Suffrage: 21 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state: King TUPOU VI (since 18 March 2012); Heir Apparent Crown Prince Siaosi Manumataogo 'Alaivahamama'o 'Ahoeitu Konstantin Tuku'aho, son of the king (born 17 September 1985); note - on 18 March 2012, King George TUPOU V died and his brother, Crown Prince TUPOUTO'A Lavaka, assumed the throne as TUPOU VI

head of government: Interim Prime Minister 'Akilisi POHIVA (since 30 December 2014)

cabinet: Cabinet nominated by the prime minister and appointed by the monarch elections/appointments: the monarchy is hereditary; prime minister and deputy prime minister indirectly elected by the Legislative Assembly and appointed by the monarch; election last held on 18 December 2017 (next to be held in November 2020)

election results: 'Akilisi POHIVA (Democratic Party of the Friendly Islands) reelected prime minister by parliament receiving 14 of 26 votes

note: a Privy Council advises the monarch
Legislative branch: description: unicameral Legislative Assembly or Fale Alea (up to 30 seats; - 26 for the 2017-19 term); 17 people's representatives directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote, and 9 indirectly elected by hereditary leaders; members serve 3-year terms)

elections: last held on 16 November 2017 (next to be held in 2020)

election results: percent of vote - NA; seats by party - Democratic Party 14, nobles' representatives 9,  independent 3; composition - men 24, women 2, percent of women 7.7%
Judicial branch: highest courts: Court of Appeal (consists of the court president and a number of judges determined by the monarch); note - appeals beyond the Court of Appeal are brought before the King in Privy Council, the monarch's advisory organ that has both judicial and legislative powers judge selection and term of office: judge appointments and tenures made by the King in Privy Council and subject to consent of the Legislative Assembly

subordinate courts: Supreme Court; Magistrates' Courts; Land Courts
Political parties and leaders: Democratic Party of the Friendly Islands [Samuela 'Akilisi POHIVA] People's Democratic Party or PDP [Tesina FUKO] Sustainable Nation-Building Party [Sione FONUA] Tonga Democratic Labor Party Tonga Human Rights and Democracy Movement or THRDM
International organization participation: ACP, ADB, AOSIS, C, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IPU, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, SPC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
National symbol(s): red cross on white field, arms equal length;
national colors: red, white
National anthem: name: "Ko e fasi `o e tu"i `o e `Otu Tonga" (Song of the King of the Tonga Islands)
lyrics/music: Uelingatoni Ngu TUPOUMALOHI/Karl Gustavus SCHMITT

note: in use since 1875; more commonly known as "Fasi Fakafonua" (National Song)
Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Mahe'uli'uli Sandhurst TUPOUNIUA (since 17 September 2013)
chancery: 250 E. 51st Street, New York, NY, 10022
telephone: [1] (917) 369-1025
FAX: [1] (917) 369-1024
consulate(s) general: San Francisco
Diplomatic representation from the US: the US does not have an embassy in Tonga; the US Ambassador to Fiji is accredited to Tonga
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Tonga has a small, open island economy and is the last constitutional monarchy among the Pacific Island countries. It has a narrow export base in agricultural goods. Squash, vanilla beans, and yams are the main crops. Agricultural exports, including fish, make up two-thirds of total exports. Tourism is the second-largest source of hard currency earnings following remittances. Tonga had 53,800 visitors in 2015. The country must import a high proportion of its food, mainly from New Zealand. The country remains dependent on external aid and remittances from overseas Tongans to offset its trade deficit. The government is emphasizing the development of the private sector, encouraging investment, and is committing increased funds for health care and education. Tonga's English-speaking and educated workforce offers a viable labor market, and the tropical climate provides fertile soil. Renewable energy and deep-sea mining also offer opportunities for investment. Tonga has a reasonably sound basic infrastructure and well developed social services. But the government faces high unemployment among the young, moderate inflation, pressures for democratic reform, and rising civil service expenditures.
GDP (purchasing power parity): $591 million (2017 est.) $576.6 million (2016 est.) $553.6 million (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP (official exchange rate): $455 million (2017 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: 2.5% (2017 est.) 4.2% (2016 est.) 3.5% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP): $5,900 (2017 est.) $5,700 (2016 est.) $5,400 (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars GDP - composition, by end use: household consumption: 99.4% (2017 est.) government consumption: 21.9% (2017 est.) investment in fixed capital: 24.1% (2017 est.) investment in inventories: 0% (2017 est.) exports of goods and services: 22.8% (2017 est.) imports of goods and services: -68.5% (2017 est.) GDP - composition, by sector of origin: agriculture: 19.9% (2017 est.) industry: 20.3% (2017 est.) services: 59.8% (2017 est.)
Agriculture - products: squash, coconuts, copra, bananas, vanilla beans, cocoa, coffee, sweet potatoes, cassava, taro, and kava
Industries: tourism, construction, fishing
Industrial production growth rate: 5% (2017 est.)
Labor force: 33,800 (2011 est.)
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture: 2,006% (2006 est.)
industry: 27.5% (2006 est.)
services: 2,006% (2006 est.)
Unemployment rate: 1.1% (2011 est.) 1.1% (2006)
Population below poverty line: 22.5% (2010 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: n/a
highest 10%: n/a
Budget: revenues: 181.2 million (2017 est.)
expenditures: 181.2 million (2017 est.)
Taxes and other revenues: 39.8% (of GDP) (2017 est.) Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-): 0% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Public debt: 48% of GDP (FY2017 est.) 51.8% of GDP (FY2016 est.)
Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June
Inflation rate (consumer prices): 7.4% (2017 est.) 2.6% (2016 est.)
Current account balance: -$53 million (2017 est.) -$30 million (2016 est.)
Exports: $18.4 million (2017 est.) $19.4 million (2016 est.)
Exports - commodities: squash, fish, vanilla beans, root crops, kava
Exports - partners: Hong Kong 25.1%, NZ 22.6%, US 14.3%, Japan 12.8%, Australia 10.5% (2017)
Imports: $250.2 million (2017 est.) $269.8 million (2016 est.)
Imports - commodities: foodstuffs, machinery and transport equipment, fuels, chemicals
Imports - partners: NZ 33.3%, Fiji 11.7%, US 9.8%, Singapore 9%, Australia 8.9%, China 7.9%, Japan 5.9% (2017)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $198.5 million (31 December 2017 est.) $176.5 million (31 December 2016 est.)
Debt - external: $189.9 million (31 December 2017 est.) $198.2 million (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home: $127.2 million (31 December 2017 est.) $117.2 million (31 December 2016 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares: n/a
Exchange rates: pa'anga (TOP) per US dollar - 2.228 (2017 est.) 2.216 (2016 est.) 2.216 (2015 est.) 2.106 (2014 est.) 1.847 (2013 est.)
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Electricity - production: 52 million kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - consumption: 48.36 million kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2016)
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity: 20,300 kW (2016 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels: 74% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels: 0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants: 0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources: 26% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Crude oil - production: 71,800 bbl/day (2017 est.)
Crude oil - exports: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Crude oil - imports: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Crude oil - proved reserves: 0 bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production: 0 bbl/day (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption: 900 bbl/day (2016 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports: 910 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - consumption: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves: 0 cu m (1 January 2014 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy: 139,700 Mt (2017 est.)
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Cellular Phones in use: total subscriptions: 80,000
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 75 (July 2016 est.)
Telephone system: general assessment: high speed Internet provided by 3 MNOs, which has subsequently allowed for better health care services, faster connections for education and growing e-commerce services; fixed-line teledensity has dropped given mobile subscriptions; mobile technology dominates given the island geography; satellite technology is widespread and is important especially in areas away from the city (2018)

domestic: fixed-line 14 per 100 and mobile-cellular teledensity 70 telephones per 100; fully automatic switched network (2018)

international: country code - 676; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Pacific Ocean); in 2013 undersea fibre-optic cable links Tonga to Fiji and  Sydney (2017)
Broadcast media: 1 state-owned TV station and 3 privately owned TV stations; satellite and cable TV services are available; 1 state-owned and 5 privately owned radio stations; Radio Australia broadcasts available via satellite (2019)
Internet country code: .to
Internet users: total: 42,552
percent of population: 40% (July 2016 est.)
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Airports: 6 (2013)
Airports (paved runways): total 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 (2013)
Airports (unpaved runways): total 5
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2013)
914 to 1,523 m: 3 (2013)
under 914 m: 1 (2013)
Roadways: total 680 km
(2011) paved: 184 km (2011)
unpaved: 496 km (2011)
Merchant marine: total 33

by type: bulk carrier 1, container ship 1, general cargo 15, oil tanker 1, other 15 (2018)
Ports and terminals: major seaport(s): Nuku'alofa, Neiafu, Pangai
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Military branches: His Majesty's Armed Forces (HMAF): Territorial Forces, Land Force (includes Tonga Royal Guards, Royal Tonga Marines, and a Combined Log and Tech Support Unit), Tonga Navy, Training Wing, Air Wing and Support Unit (2018)
Military service age and obligation: 16 years of age for voluntary enlistment (with parental consent); no conscription; the king retains the right to call up "all those capable of bearing arms" in wartime (2012)
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 Transnational Issues
Disputes - International: maritime boundary dispute with Fiji
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