Introduction

South America :: Paraguay

Background:
Paraguay achieved its independence from Spain in 1811. In the disastrous War of the Triple Alliance (1865-70) - between Paraguay and Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay - Paraguay lost two-thirds of all its adult males and much of its territory. The country stagnated economically for the next half century. Following the Chaco War of 1932-35 with Bolivia, Paraguay gained a large part of the Chaco lowland region. The 35-year military dictatorship of Alfredo STROESSNER ended in 1989, and, despite a marked increase in political infighting in recent years, Paraguay has held relatively free and regular presidential elections since the country's return to democracy.

Geography

Location:
Central South America, northeast of Argentina, southwest of Brazil

Geographic coordinates:
23 00 S, 58 00 W

Map references:
South America

Area:
Total: 406,752 sq km
Country comparison to the world: 60
Land: 397,302 sq km
Water: 9,450 sq km

Area - comparative:
slightly smaller than California

Land boundaries:
Total: 3,995 km
Border countries: Argentina 1,880 km, Bolivia 750 km, Brazil 1,365 km

Coastline:
0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims:
none (landlocked)

Climate:
subtropical to temperate; substantial rainfall in the eastern portions, becoming semiarid in the far west

Terrain:
grassy plains and wooded hills east of Rio Paraguay; Gran Chaco region west of Rio Paraguay mostly low, marshy plain near the river, and dry forest and thorny scrub elsewhere

Elevation extremes:
Lowest point: junction of Rio Paraguay and Rio Parana 46 m
Highest point: Cerro Pero 842 m

Natural resources:
hydropower, timber, iron ore, manganese, limestone

Land use:
Arable land: 9.59%
Permanent crops: 0.22%
Other: 90.19% (2011)

Irrigated land:
670 sq km (2003)

Total renewable water resources:
336 cu km (2011)

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):
Total: 0.49 cu km/yr (20%/8%/71%)
Per capita: 88.05 cu m/yr (2000)

Natural hazards:
local flooding in southeast (early September to June); poorly drained plains may become boggy (early October to June)

Environment - current issues:
deforestation; water pollution; inadequate means for waste disposal pose health risks for many urban residents; loss of wetlands

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

Geography - note:
landlocked; lies between Argentina, Bolivia, and Brazil; population concentrated in southern part of country

People and Society

Nationality:
Noun: Paraguayan(s)
Adjective: Paraguayan

Ethnic groups:
mestizo (mixed Spanish and Amerindian) 95%, other 5%

Languages:
Spanish (official), Guarani (official)

Religions:
Roman Catholic 89.6%, Protestant 6.2%, other Christian 1.1%, other or unspecified 1.9%, none 1.1% (2002 census)

Demographic profile:
Paraguay falls below the Latin American average in several socioeconomic categories, including immunization rates, potable water, sanitation, and secondary school enrollment, and has greater rates of income inequality and child and maternal mortality. Paraguay's poverty rate has declined in recent years but remains high, especially in rural areas, with more than a third of the population below the poverty line. However, the well-being of the poor in many regions has improved in terms of housing quality and access to clean water, telephone service, and electricity. The fertility rate continues to drop, declining sharply from an average 4.3 births per woman in the late 1990s to about 2 in 2013, as a result of the greater educational attainment of women, increased use of contraception, and a desire for smaller families among young women.
Paraguay is a country of emigration; it has not attracted large numbers of immigrants because of political instability, civil wars, years of dictatorship, and the greater appeal of neighboring countries. Paraguay first tried to encourage immigration in 1870 in order to rebound from the heavy death toll it suffered during the War of the Triple Alliance, but it received few European and Middle Eastern immigrants. In the 20th century, limited numbers of immigrants arrived from Lebanon, Japan, South Korea, and China, as well as Mennonites from Canada, Russia, and Mexico. Large flows of Brazilian immigrants have been arriving since the 1960s, mainly to work in agriculture. Paraguayans continue to emigrate to Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, the United States, Italy, Spain, and France.

Population:
6,623,252 (July 2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 103

Age structure:
0-14 years: 26.8% (male 903,578/female 873,079)
15-24 years: 20.8% (male 692,006/female 684,297)
25-54 years: 39% (male 1,294,037/female 1,290,376)
55-64 years: 6.9% (male 234,803/female 224,862)
65 years and over: 6.4% (male 198,529/female 227,685) (2013 est.)

Dependency ratios:
Total dependency ratio: 61 %
Youth dependency ratio: 52.2 %
Elderly dependency ratio: 8.8 %
Potential support ratio: 11.4 (2013)

Median age:
Total: 26.3 years
Male: 26.1 years
Female: 26.5 years (2013 est.)

Population growth rate:
1.23% (2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 96

Birth rate:
16.95 births/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 119

Death rate:
4.61 deaths/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 199

Net migration rate:
-0.08 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 114

Urbanization:
Urban population: 61% of total population (2010)
Rate of urbanization: 2.5% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)

Major urban areas - population:
ASUNCION (capital) 1.977 million (2009)

Sex ratio:
At birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.87 male(s)/female
Total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2013 est.)

Mother's mean age at first birth:
22.9
note: Median age at first birth among women 25-29 (2008 est.)

Maternal mortality rate:
99 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)
Country comparison to the world: 74

Infant mortality rate:
Total: 21.48 deaths/1,000 live births
Country comparison to the world: 86
Male: 25.21 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 17.57 deaths/1,000 live births (2013 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
Total population: 76.6 years
Country comparison to the world: 74
Male: 73.97 years
Female: 79.35 years (2013 est.)

Total fertility rate:
2.01 children born/woman (2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 129

Contraceptive prevalence rate:
79.4%
note: percent of women aged 15-44 (2008)

Health expenditures:
5.9% of GDP (2010)
Country comparison to the world: 114

Physicians density:
1.11 physicians/1,000 population (2002)

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

Drinking water source:
Improved:
urban: 99% of population
rural: 66% of population
total: 86% of population
Unimproved:
urban: 1% of population
rural: 34% of population
total: 14% of population (2010 est.)

Sanitation facility access:
Improved:
urban: 90% of population
rural: 40% of population
total: 71% of population
Unimproved:
urban: 10% of population
rural: 60% of population
total: 29% of population (2010 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
0.3% (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 87

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
13,000 (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 89

HIV/AIDS - deaths:
fewer than 500 (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 90

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

Obesity - adult prevalence rate:
17.9% (2008)
Country comparison to the world: 110

Children under the age of 5 years underweight:
3.4% (2005)
Country comparison to the world: 102

Education expenditures:
4.1% of GDP (2010)
Country comparison to the world: 108

Literacy:
Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 93.9%
Male: 94.8%
Female: 92.9% (2010 est.)

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

Child labor - children ages 5-14:
Total number: 205,297
Percentage: 15 % (2004 est.)

Unemployment, youth ages 15-24:
Total: 17.8%
Country comparison to the world: 71
Male: 9.7%
Female: 13% (2011)

Government

Country name:
Conventional long form: Republic of Paraguay
Conventional short form: Paraguay
Local long form: Republica del Paraguay
Local short form: Paraguay

Government type:
constitutional republic

Capital:
Name: Asuncion
Geographic coordinates: 25 16 S, 57 40 W
Time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Daylight saving time: +1hr, begins first Sunday in October; ends fourth Sunday in March

Administrative divisions:
17 departments (departamentos, singular - departamento) and 1 capital city*; Alto Paraguay, Alto Parana, Amambay, Asuncion*, Boqueron, Caaguazu, Caazapa, Canindeyu, Central, Concepcion, Cordillera, Guaira, Itapua, Misiones, Neembucu, Paraguari, Presidente Hayes, San Pedro

Independence:
14 May 1811 (from Spain)

National holiday:
Independence Day, 14 May 1811 (observed 15 May)

Constitution:
promulgated 20 June 1992

Legal system:
civil law system with influences from Argentine, Spanish, Roman, and French civil law models; judicial review of legislative acts in Supreme Court of Justice

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

Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal and compulsory until the age of 75

Executive branch:
Chief of state: President Horacio CARTES (since 15 August 2013); Vice President Juan AFARA (since 15 August 2013); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
Head of government: President Horacio CARTES (since 15 August 2013); Vice President Juan AFARA (since 15 August 2013)
Cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president
Elections: president and vice president elected on the same ticket by popular vote for a single five-year term; election last held on 21 April 2013 (next to be held in April 2018)
Election results: Horacio CARTES elected president; percent of vote - Horacio CARTES 45.8%, Efrain ALEGRE 36.94%, Mario FERREIRO 5.88%, Anibal CARRILLO 3.32%, other 8.06%

Legislative branch:
bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of the Chamber of Senators or Camara de Senadores (45 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) and the Chamber of Deputies or Camara de Diputados (80 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
Elections: Chamber of Senators - last held on 21 April 2013 (next to be held in April 2018); Chamber of Deputies - last held on 21 April 2013 (next to be held in April 2018)
Election results: Chamber of Senators - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - ANR 19, PLRA 12, FG 5, PDP 3, Avanza Pais 2, UNACE 2, PEN 1, PPQ 1; Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - ANR 44, PLRA 27, Avanza Pais 2, PEN 2, UNACE 2, FG 1, PPQ 1, other 1

Judicial branch:
Highest court(s): Supreme Court of Justice or Corte Suprema de Justicia (consists of 9 justices divided 3 each into the Constitutional Court, Civil and Commercial Chamber, and Criminal Division
Judge selection and term of office: justices proposed by the Council of Magistrates or Consejo de la Magistratura, a 6-member independent body, and appointed by the Chamber of Senators with presidential concurrence; judges appointed until mandatory retirement at age 75
Subordinate courts: appellate courts; first instance courts; minor courts, including justices of the peace

Political parties and leaders:
Alianza Patriotica por el Cambio (Patriotic Alliance for Change) or APC
Asociacion Nacional Republicana - Colorado Party or ANR [Lilian SAMANIEGO]
Avanza Pais coalition [Mario FERREIRO]
Broad Front coalition (Frente Guazu) or FG [Fernando Armindo LUGO Mendez]
Movimiento Popolar Tekojoja or Tekojoja [Sixto PEREIRA]
Movimiento Union Nacional de Ciudadanos Eticos or UNACE
Patria Querida (Beloved Fatherland Party) or PPQ [Sebastian ACHA]
Partido del Movimiento al Socialismo or P-MAS [Camilo Ernesto SOARES Machado]
Partido Democratica Progresista or PDP [Rafael Augusto FILIZZOLA Serra]
Partido Encuentro Nacional or PEN [Fernando CAMACHO Paredes]
Partido Liberal Radical Autentico or PLRA [Blas Antonio LLANO Ramos]
Partido Pais Solidario or PPS [Carlos Alberto FILIZZOLA Pallares]

Political pressure groups and leaders:
Ahorristas Estafados or AE
National Coordinating Board of Campesino Organizations or MCNOC [Luis AGUAYO]
National Federation of Campesinos or FNC [Odilon ESPINOLA]
National Workers Central or CNT [Secretary General Juan TORRALES]
Paraguayan Workers Confederation or CPT
Roman Catholic Church
Unitary Workers Central or CUT [Jorge Guzman ALVARENGA Malgarejo]

International organization participation:
CAN (associate), CD, CELAC, FAO, G-11, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAES, LAIA, Mercosur (suspended), MIGA, MINURSO, MINUSTAH, MONUSCO, NAM (observer), OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, UN, UNASUR, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNIDO, Union Latina, UNISFA, UNMIL, UNMISS, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
Chief of mission: Ambassador Fernando Antonio PFANNL Caballero
Chancery: 2400 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
Telephone: [1] (202) 483-6960 through 6962
FAX: [1] (202) 234-4508
Consulate(s) general: Los Angeles, Miami, New York

Diplomatic representation from the US:
Ambassador James H. THESSIN
Embassy: 1776 Avenida Mariscal Lopez, Casilla Postal 402, Asuncion
Mailing address: Unit 4711, DPO AA 34036-0001
Telephone: [595] (21) 213-715
FAX: [595] (21) 213-728

National symbol(s):
lion

National anthem:
Name: "Paraguayos, Republica o muerte!" (Paraguayans, The Republic or Death!)

Lyrics/music: Francisco Esteban ACUNA de Figueroa/disputed
note: adopted 1934, in use since 1846; the anthem was officially adopted following its re-arrangement in 1934

Economy

Economy - overview:
Landlocked Paraguay has a market economy distinguished by a large informal sector, featuring re-export of imported consumer goods to neighboring countries, as well as the activities of thousands of microenterprises and urban street vendors. A large percentage of the population, especially in rural areas, derives its living from agricultural activity, often on a subsistence basis. Because of the importance of the informal sector, accurate economic measures are difficult to obtain. On a per capita basis, real income has stagnated at 1980 levels. The economy grew rapidly between 2003 and 2008 as growing world demand for commodities combined with high prices and favorable weather to support Paraguay's commodity-based export expansion. Paraguay is the sixth largest soy producer in the world. Drought hit in 2008, reducing agricultural exports and slowing the economy even before the onset of the global recession. The economy fell 3.8% in 2009, as lower world demand and commodity prices caused exports to contract. The government reacted by introducing fiscal and monetary stimulus packages. Growth resumed at a 13% level in 2010, the highest in South America, but slowed to about 4% in 2011 as the stimulus subsided. In 2012, severe drought and outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease led to a drop in beef and other agricultural exports and the economy contracted about 0.5%. Political uncertainty, corruption, limited progress on structural reform, and deficient infrastructure are the main obstacles to long-term growth.

GDP (purchasing power parity):
$41.55 billion (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 101
$42.05 billion (2011 est.)
$40.3 billion (2010 est.)
note: data are in 2012 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate):
$26 billion (2012 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:
-1.2% (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 200
4.3% (2011 est.)
13.1% (2010 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP):
$6,200 (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 147
$6,400 (2011 est.)
$6,300 (2010 est.)
note: data are in 2012 US dollars

GDP - composition, by end use:
Household consumption: 72.8%
Government consumption: 12.2%
Investment in fixed capital: 14.6%
Investment in inventories: 0.3%
Exports of goods and services: 46.8%
Imports of goods and services: -46.7%
(2012 est.)

GDP - composition, by sector of origin:
Agriculture: 15.9%
Industry: 17.3%
Services: 66.8% (2012 est.)

Agriculture - products:
cotton, sugarcane, soybeans, corn, wheat, tobacco, cassava (tapioca), fruits, vegetables; beef, pork, eggs, milk; timber

Industries:
sugar, cement, textiles, beverages, wood products, steel, metallurgic, electric power

Industrial production growth rate:
4.4% (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 62

Labor force:
3.137 million (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 103

Labor force - by occupation:
Agriculture: 26.5%
Industry: 18.5%
Services: 55% (2008)

Unemployment rate:
6.9% (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 76
6.6% (2011 est.)

Population below poverty line:
34.7% (2010 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
Lowest 10%: 1%
Highest 10%: 41.1% (2010 est.)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:
53.2 (2009)
Country comparison to the world: 13
57.7 (1998)

Budget:
Revenues: $4.665 billion
Expenditures: $5.109 billion (2012 est.)

Taxes and other revenues:
17.9% of GDP (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 179

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-):
-1.7% of GDP (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 77

Public debt:
14.1% of GDP (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 139
12.37% of GDP (2011 est.)

Fiscal year:
calendar year

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
3.7% (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 115
8.3% (2011 est.)

Central bank discount rate:
5.5% (31 December 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 57
6% (31 December 2011 est.)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:
29.1% (31 December 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 6
28.94% (31 December 2011 est.)

Stock of narrow money:
$4.135 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 104
$3.642 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Stock of broad money:
$10.11 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 106
$8.452 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of domestic credit:
$9.747 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 100
$7.786 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:
$958.1 million (31 December 2011)
Country comparison to the world: 116
$42 million (31 December 2010)
$409.1 million (31 December 2006)

Current account balance:
-$1.17 billion (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 118
-$549.9 million (2011 est.)

Exports:
$9.743 billion (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 96
$10.39 billion (2011 est.)

Exports - commodities:
soybeans, feed, cotton, meat, edible oils, wood, leather

Exports - partners:
Uruguay 18.3%, Argentina 16.3%, Brazil 16.2%, Russia 11.8% (2012)

Imports:
$11.24 billion (2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 92
$12.07 billion (2011 est.)

Imports - commodities:
road vehicles, consumer goods, tobacco, petroleum products, electrical machinery, tractors, chemicals, vehicle parts

Imports - partners:
Brazil 24.1%, China 19.4%, Argentina 19.2%, US 11.4% (2012)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$4.995 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 91
$4.983 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Debt - external:
$5.957 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 115
$6.013 billion (31 December 2011 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
$4.425 million (31 December 2012)
Country comparison to the world: 102
$3.86 million (31 December 2011)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:
$NA

Exchange rates:
guarani (PYG) per US dollar -
4,424.9 (2012 est.)
4,191.4 (2011 est.)
4,735.5 (2010 est.)
4,965.4 (2009)
4,337.7 (2008)

Energy

Electricity - production:
54.41 billion kWh (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 47

Electricity - consumption:
6.237 billion kWh (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 102

Electricity - exports:
43.38 billion kWh (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 5

Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 118

Electricity - installed generating capacity:
8.816 million kW (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 59

Electricity - from fossil fuels:
0.1% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 207

Electricity - from nuclear fuels:
0% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 157

Electricity - from hydroelectric plants:
99.9% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 3

Electricity - from other renewable sources:
0% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 171

Crude oil - production:
0 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 176

Crude oil - exports:
0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 165

Crude oil - imports:
0.01 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 86

Crude oil - proved reserves:
0 bbl (1 January 2013 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 175

Refined petroleum products - production:
0 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 122

Refined petroleum products - consumption:
26,820 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 120

Refined petroleum products - exports:
0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 210

Refined petroleum products - imports:
23,810 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 99

Natural gas - production:
0 cu m (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 178

Natural gas - consumption:
0 cu m (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 184

Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 159

Natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 113

Natural gas - proved reserves:
0 cu m (1 January 2012 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 181

Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy:
4.394 million Mt (2010 est.)
Country comparison to the world: 127

Communications

Telephones - main lines in use:
372,400 (2011)
Country comparison to the world: 108

Telephones - mobile cellular:
6.529 million (2011)
Country comparison to the world: 96

Telephone system:
General assessment: the fixed-line market is a state monopoly and fixed-line telephone service is meager; principal switching center is in Asuncion
Domestic: deficiencies in provision of fixed-line service have resulted in a rapid expansion of mobile-cellular services fostered by competition among multiple providers
International: country code - 595; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2010)

Broadcast media:
6 privately owned TV stations; about 75 commercial and community radio stations; 1 state-owned radio network (2010)

Internet country code:
.py

Internet hosts:
280,658 (2012)
Country comparison to the world: 65

Internet users:
1.105 million (2009)
Country comparison to the world: 94

Transportation

Airports:
799 (2013)
Country comparison to the world: 9

Airports - with paved runways:
Total: 15
Over 3,047 m: 3
1,524 to 2,437 m: 7
914 to 1,523 m: 5 (2013)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
Total: 784
1,524 to 2,437 m: 23
914 to 1,523 m: 290
Under 914 m:
471 (2013)

Railways:
Total: 36 km
Country comparison to the world: 132
Standard gauge: 36 km 1.435-m gauge (2008)

Roadways:
Total: 29,500 km
Country comparison to the world: 97
Paved: 14,986 km
Unpaved: 14,514 km (2000)

Waterways:
3,100 km (primarily on the Paraguay and Paraná river systems) (2012)
Country comparison to the world: 33

Merchant marine:
Total: 19
Country comparison to the world: 96
By type: cargo 13, container 3, passenger 1, petroleum tanker 1, roll on/roll off 1
Foreign-owned: 6 (Argentina 5, Netherlands 1) (2010)

Ports and terminals:
Asuncion, Villeta, San Antonio, Encarnacion

Military

Military branches:
Armed Forces Command (Commando de las Fuerzas Militares): Army, National Navy (Armada Nacional, includes Marine Corps, Naval Aviation, and Coast Guard), Paraguayan Air Force (Fuerza Aerea Paraguay, FAP), Logistics Command, War Materiel Directorate (2012)

Military service age and obligation:
18 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service; conscript service obligation is 12 months for Army, 24 months for Navy; volunteers for the Air Force must be younger than 22 years of age with a secondary school diploma (2012)

Manpower available for military service:
Males age 16-49: 1,678,335
Females age 16-49: 1,675,352 (2010 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:
Males age 16-49: 1,409,859
Females age 16-49: 1,433,037 (2010 est.)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
Male: 73,367
Female: 71,801 (2010 est.)

Military expenditures:
1.5% of GDP (2012)
Country comparison to the world: 98

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international:
unruly region at convergence of Argentina-Brazil-Paraguay borders is locus of money laundering, smuggling, arms and illegal narcotics trafficking, and fundraising for extremist organizations

Illicit drugs:
major illicit producer of cannabis, most or all of which is consumed in Brazil, Argentina, and Chile; transshipment country for Andean cocaine headed for Brazil, other Southern Cone markets, and Europe; weak border controls, extensive corruption and money-laundering activity, especially in the Tri-Border Area; weak anti-money-laundering laws and enforcement

Flag of Paraguay



Flag description:
three equal, horizontal bands of red (top), white, and blue with an emblem centered in the white band; unusual flag in that the emblem is different on each side; the obverse (hoist side at the left) bears the national coat of arms (a yellow five-pointed star within a green wreath capped by the words REPUBLICA DEL PARAGUAY, all within two circles); the reverse (hoist side at the right) bears a circular seal of the treasury (a yellow lion below a red Cap of Liberty and the words PAZ Y JUSTICIA (Peace and Justice)); red symbolizes bravery and patriotism, white represents integrity and peace, and blue denotes liberty and generosity
note: the three color bands resemble those on the flag of the Netherlands; one of only three national flags that differ on their obverse and reverse sides - the others are Moldova and Saudi Arabia