Introduction

Central America and Caribbean :: Honduras

Background:
Once part of Spain's vast empire in the New World, Honduras became an independent nation in 1821. After two and a half decades of mostly military rule, a freely elected civilian government came to power in 1982. During the 1980s, Honduras proved a haven for anti-Sandinista contras fighting the Marxist Nicaraguan Government and an ally to Salvadoran Government forces fighting leftist guerrillas. The country was devastated by Hurricane Mitch in 1998, which killed about 5,600 people and caused approximately $2 billion in damage. Since then, the economy has slowly rebounded.

Geography

Location:
Central America, bordering the Caribbean Sea, between Guatemala and Nicaragua and bordering the Gulf of Fonseca (North Pacific Ocean), between El Salvador and Nicaragua

Geographic coordinates:
15 00 N, 86 30 W

Map references:
Central America and the Caribbean

Area:
Total: 112,090 sq km
Country comparison to the world: 103
Land: 111,890 sq km
Water: 200 sq km

Area - comparative:
slightly larger than Tennessee

Land boundaries:
Total: 1,520 km
Border countries: Guatemala 256 km, El Salvador 342 km, Nicaragua 922 km

Coastline:
Caribbean Sea 669 km; Gulf of Fonseca 163 km

Maritime claims:
Territorial sea: 12 nm
Contiguous zone: 24 nm
Exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Continental shelf: natural extension of territory or to 200 nm

Climate:
subtropical in lowlands, temperate in mountains

Terrain:
mostly mountains in interior, narrow coastal plains

Elevation extremes:
Lowest point: Caribbean Sea 0 m
Highest point: Cerro Las Minas 2,870 m

Natural resources:
timber, gold, silver, copper, lead, zinc, iron ore, antimony, coal, fish, hydropower

Land use:
Arable land: 9.07%
Permanent crops: 3.91%
Other: 87.02% (2011)

Irrigated land:
878.5 sq km (2007)

Total renewable water resources:
95.93 cu km (2011)

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):
Total: 2.12 cu km/yr (16%/23%/61%)
Per capita: 295.6 cu m/yr (2006)

Natural hazards:
frequent, but generally mild, earthquakes; extremely susceptible to damaging hurricanes and floods along the Caribbean coast

Environment - current issues:
urban population expanding; deforestation results from logging and the clearing of land for agricultural purposes; further land degradation and soil erosion hastened by uncontrolled development and improper land use practices such as farming of marginal lands; mining activities polluting Lago de Yojoa (the country's largest source of fresh water), as well as several rivers and streams, with heavy metals

Environment - international agreements:
Party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands
Signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note:
has only a short Pacific coast but a long Caribbean shoreline, including the virtually uninhabited eastern Mosquito Coast

People and Society

Nationality:
Noun: Honduran(s)
Adjective: Honduran

Ethnic groups:
mestizo (mixed Amerindian and European) 90%, Amerindian 7%, black 2%, white 1%

Languages:
Spanish (official), Amerindian dialects

Religions:
Roman Catholic 97%, Protestant 3%

Demographic profile:
Honduras is one of the poorest countries in Latin America and has the world's highest murder rate. More than half of the population lives in poverty and per capita income is one of the lowest in the region. Poverty rates are higher among rural and indigenous people and in the south, west, and along the eastern border than in the north and central areas where most of Honduras' industries and infrastructure are concentrated. The increased productivity needed to break Honduras' persistent high poverty rate depends, in part, on further improvements in educational attainment. Although primary-school enrollment is near 100%, educational quality is poor, the drop-out rate and grade repetition remain high, and teacher and school accountability is low.
Honduras' population growth rate has slowed since the 1990s, but it remains high at nearly 2% annually because the birth rate averages approximately three children per woman and more among rural, indigenous, and poor women. Consequently, Honduras' young adult population - ages 15 to 29 - is projected to continue growing rapidly for the next three decades and then stabilize or slowly shrink. Population growth and limited job prospects outside of agriculture will continue to drive emigration. Remittances represent about a fifth of GDP.

Population:
8,448,465 (July 2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 93
note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected

Age structure:
0-14 years: 35.5% (male 1,530,385/female 1,466,136)
15-24 years: 21.2% (male 913,818/female 878,340)
25-54 years: 34.8% (male 1,482,548/female 1,459,341)
55-64 years: 4.6% (male 178,514/female 208,243)
65 years and over: 3.9% (male 145,626/female 185,514) (2013 est.)

Dependency ratios:
Total dependency ratio: 65.8 %
Youth dependency ratio: 58.4 %
Elderly dependency ratio: 7.4 %
Potential support ratio: 13.6 (2013)

Median age:
Total: 21.6 years
Male: 21.3 years
Female: 22 years (2013 est.)

Population growth rate:
1.79% (2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 70

Birth rate:
24.16 births/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 64

Death rate:
5.09 deaths/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 182

Net migration rate:
-1.2 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 152

Urbanization:
Urban population: 52% of total population (2010)
Rate of urbanization: 3.1% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)

Major urban areas - population:
TEGUCIGALPA (capital) 1 million (2009)

Sex ratio:
At birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.85 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.79 male(s)/female
Total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2013 est.)

Mother's mean age at first birth:
20.1 (2006 est.)

Maternal mortality rate:
100 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)
Country comparison to the world: 72

Infant mortality rate:
Total: 19.28 deaths/1,000 live births
Country comparison to the world: 96
Male: 21.83 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 16.6 deaths/1,000 live births (2013 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
Total population: 70.81 years
Country comparison to the world: 148
Male: 69.14 years
Female: 72.56 years (2013 est.)

Total fertility rate:
2.94 children born/woman (2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 63

Contraceptive prevalence rate:
65.2% (2005/06)

Health expenditures:
6.8% of GDP (2010)
Country comparison to the world: 88

Physicians density:
0.57 physicians/1,000 population (2000)

Hospital bed density:
0.8 beds/1,000 population (2010)

Drinking water source:
Improved:
urban: 95% of population
rural: 79% of population
total: 87% of population
Unimproved:
urban: 5% of population
rural: 21% of population
total: 13% of population (2010 est.)

Sanitation facility access:
Improved:
urban: 85% of population
rural: 69% of population
total: 77% of population
Unimproved:
urban: 15% of population
rural: 31% of population
total: 23% of population (2010 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
0.8% (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 58

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
39,000 (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 62

HIV/AIDS - deaths:
2,500 (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 51

Major infectious diseases:
Degree of risk: high
Food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
Vectorborne diseases: dengue fever and malaria (2013)

Obesity - adult prevalence rate:
18.4% (2008)
Country comparison to the world: 106

Children under the age of 5 years underweight:
8.6% (2006)
Country comparison to the world: 71

Education expenditures:
NA

Literacy:
Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 85.1%
Male: 85.3%
Female: 84.9% (2011 est.)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
Total: 12 years
Male: 11 years
Female: 12 years (2010)

Child labor - children ages 5-14:
Total number: 280,809
Percentage: 16 % (2002 est.)

Unemployment, youth ages 15-24:
Total: 7%
Country comparison to the world: 126
Male: 5.2%
Female: 11.2% (2005)

Government

Country name:
Conventional long form: Republic of Honduras
Conventional short form: Honduras
Local long form: Republica de Honduras
Local short form: Honduras

Government type:
democratic constitutional republic

Capital:
Name: Tegucigalpa
Geographic coordinates: 14 06 N, 87 13 W
Time difference: UTC-6 (1 hour behind Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Daylight saving time: none scheduled for 2013

Administrative divisions:
18 departments (departamentos, singular - departamento); Atlantida, Choluteca, Colon, Comayagua, Copan, Cortes, El Paraiso, Francisco Morazan, Gracias a Dios, Intibuca, Islas de la Bahia, La Paz, Lempira, Ocotepeque, Olancho, Santa Barbara, Valle, Yoro

Independence:
15 September 1821 (from Spain)

National holiday:
Independence Day, 15 September (1821)

Constitution:
11 January 1982, effective 20 January 1982; amended many times

Legal system:
civil law system

International law organization participation:
accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction

Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branch:
Chief of state: President Porfirio LOBO Sosa (since 27 January 2010); Vice President Maria Antonieta GUILLEN de Bogran (since 27 January 2010); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
Head of government: President Porfirio LOBO Sosa (since 27 January 2010); Vice President Maria Antonieta GUILLEN de Bogran (since 27 January 2010)
Cabinet: Cabinet appointed by president
Elections: president elected by popular vote for a four-year term; election last held on 29 November 2009 (next to be held in November 2013)
Election results: Porfirio LOBO Sosa elected president; percent of vote - Porfirio LOBO Sosa 56.3%, Elvin SANTOS Lozano 38.1%, other 5.6%

Legislative branch:
unicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional (128 seats; members elected proportionally by department to serve four-year terms)
Elections: last held on 29 November 2009 (next to be held in November 2013)
Election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PNH 71, PL 45, DC 5, UD 4, PINU 3

Judicial branch:
Highest court(s): Supreme Court of Justice or Corte Suprema de Justicia (9 principal judges - including the court president - and 7 alternates; court organized into civil, criminal, and labor chambers); note - the court has both judicial and constitutional jurisdiction
Judge selection and term of office: court president elected by his peers; judges elected by the National Congress from candidates proposed by the Nominating Board, a diverse 7-member group of judicial officials, other government and non-government officials selected by each of their organizations; judges elected by Congress for renewable, 7-year terms
Subordinate courts: courts of appeal; courts of first instance; peace courts

Political parties and leaders:
Anti-Corruption Party or PAC [Salvador NASRALLA]
Christian Democratic Party or DC [Felicito AVILA Ordonez]
Broad Political Electoral Front in Resistance or FAPER [Andres PAVON]
Democratic Unification Party or UD [Cesar HAM]
Freedom and Refounding Party or LIBRE [Jose Manuel ZELAYA Rosales]
Liberal Party or PL [Elvin SANTOS Brito]
National Party of Honduras or PNH [Ricardo ALVAREZ]
Social Democratic Innovation and Unity Party or PINU [Jorge Rafael AGUILAR Paredes]

Political pressure groups and leaders:
Beverage and Related Industries Syndicate or STIBYS
Committee for the Defense of Human Rights in Honduras or CODEH
Confederation of Honduran Workers or CTH
Coordinating Committee of Popular Organizations or CCOP
General Workers Confederation or CGT
Honduran Council of Private Enterprise or COHEP
National Association of Honduran Campesinos or ANACH
National Union of Campesinos or UNC
Popular Bloc or BP
United Confederation of Honduran Workers or CUTH
United Farm Workers' Movement of the Aguan (MUCA)

International organization participation:
BCIE, CACM, CD, CELAC, FAO, G-11, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC (suspended), IOM, IPU, ISO (subscriber), ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAES, LAIA (observer), MIGA, MINURSO, NAM, OAS (suspended), OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, Petrocaribe, SICA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, Union Latina, UNWTO, UPU, WCO (suspended), WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
Chief of mission: Ambassador Jorge Ramon HERNANDEZ Alcerro
Chancery: Suite 4-M, 3007 Tilden Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
Telephone: [1] (202) 966-2604
FAX: [1] (202) 966-9751
Consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Belmont (MA), Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, Phoenix, San Francisco

Diplomatic representation from the US:
Chief of mission: Ambassador Lisa J. KUBISKE
Embassy: Avenida La Paz, Apartado Postal No. 3453, Tegucigalpa
Mailing address: American Embassy, APO AA 34022, Tegucigalpa
Telephone: [504] 2236-9320, 2238-5114
FAX: [504] 2236-9037

National symbol(s):
scarlet macaw; white-tailed deer

National anthem:
Name: "Himno Nacional de Honduras" (National Anthem of Honduras)

Lyrics/music: Augusto Constancio COELLO/Carlos HARTLING
note: adopted 1915; the anthem's seven verses chronicle Honduran history; on official occasions, only the chorus and last verse are sung

Economy

Economy - overview:
Honduras, the second poorest country in Central America, suffers from extraordinarily unequal distribution of income, as well as high underemployment. While historically dependent on the export of bananas and coffee, Honduras has diversified its export base to include apparel and automobile wire harnessing. Nearly half of Honduras's economic activity is directly tied to the US, with exports to the US accounting for 30% of GDP and remittances for another 20%. The US-Central America-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) came into force in 2006 and has helped foster foreign direct investment, but physical and political insecurity, as well as crime and perceptions of corruption, may deter potential investors; about 70% of FDI is from US firms. The economy registered modest economic growth of 3.0%-4.0% from 2010 to 2012, insufficient to improve living standards for the nearly 65% of the population in poverty. An 18-month IMF Standby Arrangement expired in March 2012 and was not renewed, due to the country's growing budget deficit and weak current account performance. Public sector workers complained of not receiving their salaries in November and December 2012, and government suppliers are owed at least several hundred million dollars in unpaid contracts. The government announced in January 2013 that loss-making public enterprises will be forced to submit financial rescue plans before receiving their budget allotments for 2013.

GDP (purchasing power parity):
$38.42 billion (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 106
$37.2 billion (2011 est.)
$35.86 billion (2010 est.)
note: data are in 2012 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate):
$18.39 billion (2012 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:
3.3% (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 100
3.7% (2011 est.)
3.7% (2010 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP):
$4,700 (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 163
$4,600 (2011 est.)
$4,600 (2010 est.)
note: data are in 2012 US dollars

Gross national saving:
16% of GDP (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 95
18.9% of GDP (2011 est.)
16.6% of GDP (2010 est.)

GDP - composition, by end use:
Household consumption: 78.6%
Government consumption: 16.2%
Investment in fixed capital: 25.4%
Investment in inventories: 0.1%
Exports of goods and services: 49%
Imports of goods and services: -69.4%
(2012 est.)

GDP - composition, by sector of origin:
Agriculture: 13.9%
Industry: 27.7%
Services: 58.4% (2012 est.)

Agriculture - products:
bananas, coffee, citrus, corn, African palm; beef; timber; shrimp, tilapia, lobster

Industries:
sugar, coffee, woven and knit apparel, wood products, cigars

Industrial production growth rate:
1.6% (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 107

Labor force:
3.437 million (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 100

Labor force - by occupation:
Agriculture: 39.2%
Industry: 20.9%
Services: 39.8% (2005 est.)

Unemployment rate:
4.5% (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 41
4.9% (2011 est.)
note: about one-third of the people are underemployed

Population below poverty line:
60% (2010 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
Lowest 10%: 0.4%
Highest 10%: 42.4% (2009 est.)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:
57.7 (2007)
Country comparison to the world: 9
53.8 (2003)

Budget:
Revenues: $3.074 billion
Expenditures: $4.169 billion (2012 est.)

Taxes and other revenues:
16.7% of GDP (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 185

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-):
-6% of GDP (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 177

Public debt:
34.8% of GDP (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 104
32.6% of GDP (2011 est.)

Fiscal year:
calendar year

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
5.2% (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 150
6.8% (2011 est.)

Central bank discount rate:
6.25% (31 December 2010 est.)
NA% (31 December 2009 est.)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:
18.45% (31 December 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 23
18.56% (31 December 2011 est.)

Stock of narrow money:
$1.913 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 125
$2.154 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Stock of broad money:
$9.112 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 110
$8.127 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of domestic credit:
$10.5 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 98
$9.576 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:
$NA

Current account balance:
-$1.661 billion (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 131
-$1.503 billion (2011 est.)

Exports:
$7.931 billion (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 101
$7.8 billion (2011 est.)

Exports - commodities:
apparel, coffee, shrimp, automobile wire harnesses, cigars, bananas, gold, palm oil, fruit, lobster, lumber

Exports - partners:
US 40%, Germany 9.7%, El Salvador 6%, Belgium 5.9%, Guatemala 4.5%, Nicaragua 4.1% (2012)

Imports:
$11.18 billion (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 93
$10.99 billion (2011 est.)

Imports - commodities:
machinery and transport equipment, industrial raw materials, chemical products, fuels, foodstuffs

Imports - partners:
US 44.3%, Guatemala 8.5%, China 6%, El Salvador 5.6%, Mexico 5.5% (2012)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$2.533 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 115
$2.793 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Debt - external:
$4.782 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 121
$4.452 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Exchange rates:
lempiras (HNL) per US dollar -
19.638 (2012 est.)
19.051 (2011 est.)
18.9 (2010 est.)
18.9 (2009)
18.983 (2008)

Energy

Electricity - production:
6.326 billion kWh (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 110

Electricity - consumption:
4.8 billion kWh (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 114

Electricity - exports:
46 million kWh (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 77

Electricity - imports:
100,000 kWh (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 107

Electricity - installed generating capacity:
1.697 million kW (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 108

Electricity - from fossil fuels:
63.9% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 132

Electricity - from nuclear fuels:
0% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 105

Electricity - from hydroelectric plants:
30.8% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 76

Electricity - from other renewable sources:
5.4% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 34

Crude oil - production:
0 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 146

Crude oil - exports:
0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 124

Crude oil - imports:
0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 198

Crude oil - proved reserves:
0 bbl (1 January 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 145

Refined petroleum products - production:
0 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 189

Refined petroleum products - consumption:
58,150 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 95

Refined petroleum products - exports:
8,419 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 90

Refined petroleum products - imports:
54,100 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 65

Natural gas - production:
0 cu m (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 143

Natural gas - consumption:
0 cu m (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 154

Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 115

Natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 205

Natural gas - proved reserves:
0 cu m (1 January 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 148

Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy:
8.288 million Mt (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 105

Communications

Telephones - main lines in use:
609,200 (2011)
Country comparison to the world: 91

Telephones - mobile cellular:
8.062 million (2011)
Country comparison to the world: 88

Telephone system:
General assessment: fixed-line connections are increasing but still limited; competition among multiple providers of mobile-cellular services is contributing to a sharp increase in subscribership
Domestic: beginning in 2003, private sub-operators allowed to provide fixed-lines in order to expand telephone coverage contributing to a small increase in fixed-line teledensity; mobile-cellular subscribership is roughly 100 per 100 persons
International: country code - 504; landing point for both the Americas Region Caribbean Ring System (ARCOS-1) and the MAYA-1 fiber-optic submarine cable system that together provide connectivity to South and Central America, parts of the Caribbean, and the US; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); connected to Central American Microwave System (2011)

Broadcast media:
multiple privately owned terrestrial TV networks, supplemented by multiple cable TV networks; Radio Honduras is the lone government-owned radio network; roughly 300 privately owned radio stations (2007)

Internet country code:
.hn

Internet hosts:
30,955 (2012)
Country comparison to the world: 107

Internet users:
731,700 (2009)
Country comparison to the world: 108

Transportation

Airports:
103 (2013)
Country comparison to the world: 54

Airports - with paved runways:
Total: 13
2,438 to 3,047 m: 3
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 4
Under 914 m: 3 (2013)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
Total: 90
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 16
Under 914 m:
73 (2013)

Railways:
Total: 44 km
Country comparison to the world: 131
Narrow gauge: 44 km 1.067-m gauge
note: (4 km are in use) (2012)

Roadways:
Total: 14,742 km
Country comparison to the world: 123
Paved: 3,367 km
Unpaved: 11,375 km (1,543 km summer only)
note: there are another 8,951 km of non-offical roads used by the coffee industry (2012)

Waterways:
465 km (most navigable only by small craft) (2012)
Country comparison to the world: 85

Merchant marine:
Total: 88
Country comparison to the world: 55
By type: bulk carrier 5, cargo 39, carrier 2, chemical tanker 5, container 1, passenger 4, passenger/cargo 1, petroleum tanker 21, refrigerated cargo 7, roll on/roll off 3
Foreign-owned: 47 (Bahrain 5, Canada 1, Chile 1, China 2, Egypt 2, Greece 4, Israel 1, Japan 4, Lebanon 2, Montenegro 1, Panama 1, Singapore 11, South Korea 6, Taiwan 1, Thailand 2, UAE 1, UK 1, US 1) (2010)

Ports and terminals:
Major seaport(s): La Ceiba, Puerto Cortes, San Lorenzo, Tela

Military

Military branches:
Honduran Armed Forces (Fuerzas Armadas de Honduras, FFAA): Army, Navy (includes Naval Infantry), Honduran Air Force (Fuerza Aerea Hondurena, FAH) (2012)

Military service age and obligation:
18 years of age for voluntary 2- to 3-year military service; no conscription (2012)

Manpower available for military service:
Males age 16-49: 2,045,914
Females age 16-49: 1,991,418 (2010 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:
Males age 16-49: 1,525,578
Females age 16-49: 1,539,688 (2010 est.)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
Male: 95,895
Female: 92,087 (2010 est.)

Military expenditures:
1.5% of GDP (2012)
Country comparison to the world: 97

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international:
International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled on the delimitation of "bolsones" (disputed areas) along the El Salvador-Honduras border in 1992 with final settlement by the parties in 2006 after an Organization of American States survey and a further ICJ ruling in 2003; the 1992 ICJ ruling advised a tripartite resolution to a maritime boundary in the Gulf of Fonseca with consideration of Honduran access to the Pacific; El Salvador continues to claim tiny Conejo Island, not mentioned in the ICJ ruling, off Honduras in the Gulf of Fonseca; Honduras claims the Belizean-administered Sapodilla Cays off the coast of Belize in its constitution, but agreed to a joint ecological park around the cays should Guatemala consent to a maritime corridor in the Caribbean under the OAS-sponsored 2002 Belize-Guatemala Differendum

Trafficking in persons:
Current situation: Honduras is a source and transit country for men, women, and children subjected to sex trafficking and forced labor; Honduran women and girls, and, to a lesser extent, women and girls from neighboring countries, are forced into prostitution in urban and tourist centers; Honduran women and girls are also exploited in sex trafficking in other countries in the region, including Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, and the US; Honduran adults and children are subjected to forced labor in Guatemala, Mexico, and the US and domestically in agriculture and domestic service; gangs coerce some young men to transport drugs or be hit men
Tier rating: Tier 2 Watch List - Honduras does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking; however, it is making significant efforts to do so; the government maintains limited law enforcement efforts against child sex trafficking offenders but has held no offenders accountable for the forced labor or forced prostitution of adults; most trafficking offenders are prosecuted under non-trafficking statutes that prescribe lower penalties; government efforts to identify, refer, and assist trafficking victims are inadequate, and most services for victims are provided by NGOs without government funding (2013)

Illicit drugs:
transshipment point for drugs and narcotics; illicit producer of cannabis, cultivated on small plots and used principally for local consumption; corruption is a major problem; some money-laundering activity

Flag of Honduras



Flag description:
three equal horizontal bands of blue (top), white, and blue, with five blue, five-pointed stars arranged in an X pattern centered in the white band; the stars represent the members of the former Federal Republic of Central America - Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua; the blue bands symbolize the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea; the white band represents the land between the two bodies of water and the peace and prosperity of its people
note: similar to the flag of El Salvador, which features a round emblem encircled by the words REPUBLICA DE EL SALVADOR EN LA AMERICA CENTRAL centered in the white band; also similar to the flag of Nicaragua, which features a triangle encircled by the words REPUBLICA DE NICARAGUA on top and AMERICA CENTRAL on the bottom, centered in the white band