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Since World War II, the impressive growth of the manufacturing, mining, and service sectors has transformed the nation from a largely rural economy into one primarily industrial and urban.The 1989 US-Canada Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) (which includes Mexico) touched off a dramatic increase in trade and economic integration with the US.As a result of the close cross-border relationship, the economic downturn in the United States in 2001 had a negative impact on the Canadian economy.Its paramount political problem continues to be the relationship of the province of Quebec, with its French-speaking residents and unique culture, to the remainder of the country.
Geography Canada Location: Northern North America, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean on the east, North Pacific Ocean on the west, and the Arctic Ocean on the north, north of the conterminous US Geographic coordinates: 60 00 N, 95 00 W Map references: North America Area: total: 9,976,140 sq km land: 9,220,970 sq km water: 755,170 sq km Area - comparative: slightly larger than the US Land boundaries: total: 8,893 km border countries: US 8,893 km (includes 2,477 km with Alaska) Coastline: 243,791 km Maritime claims: contiguous zone: 24 NM territorial sea: 12 NM continental shelf: 200 NM or to the edge of the continental margin exclusive economic zone: 200 NM Climate: varies from temperate in south to subarctic and arctic in north Terrain: mostly plains with mountains in west and lowlands in southeast Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Mount Logan 5,959 m Natural resources: iron ore, nickel, zinc, copper, gold, lead, molybdenum, potash, silver, fish, timber, wildlife, coal, petroleum, natural gas, hydropower Land use: arable land: 4.94% permanent crops: 0.02% other: 95.04% (1998 est.) Irrigated land: 7,200 sq km (1998 est.) Natural hazards: continuous permafrost in north is a serious obstacle to development; cyclonic storms form east of the Rocky Mountains, a result of the mixing of air masses from the Arctic, Pacific, and North American interior, and produce most of the country's rain and snow east of the mountains Environment - current issues: air pollution and resulting acid rain severely affecting lakes and damaging forests; metal smelting, coal-burning utilities, and vehicle emissions impacting on agricultural and forest productivity; ocean waters becoming contaminated due to agricultural, industrial, mining, and forestry activities Environment - international party to: Air Pollution, Air agreements: Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Law of the Sea, Marine Life Conservation Geography - note: second-largest country in world (after Russia); strategic location between Russia and US via north polar route; approximately 85% of the population is concentrated within 300 km of the US/Canada border People Canada - Population: 31,902,268 (July 2002 est.) Age structure: 0-14 years: 18.7% (male 3,059,023; female 2,910,203) 15-64 years: 68.4% (male 10,975,701; female 10,857,869) 65 years and over: 12.9% (male 1,743,654; female 2,355,818) (2002 est.) Population growth rate: 0.96% (2002 est.) Birth rate: 11.09 births/1,000 population (2002 est.) Death rate: 7.54 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.) Net migration rate: 6.07 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.) Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.74 male(s)/ female total population: 0.98 male(s)/ female (2002 est.) Infant mortality rate: 4.95 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.) Life expectancy at birth: total population: 79.69 years female: 83.25 years (2002 est.) male: 76.3 years Total fertility rate: 1.6 children born/woman (2002 est.) HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.3% (1999 est.) HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/ 49,000 (1999 est.) AIDS: HIV/AIDS - deaths: 400 (1999 est.) Nationality: noun: Canadian(s) adjective: Canadian Ethnic groups: British Isles origin 28%, French origin 23%, other European 15%, Amerindian 2%, other, mostly Asian, African, Arab 6%, mixed background 26% Religions: Roman Catholic 46%, Protestant 36%, other 18% note: based on the 1991 census Languages: English 59.3% (official), French 23.2% (official), other 17.5% Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 97% (1986 est.) male: NA% female: NA% Government Canada - Country name: conventional long form: none conventional short form: Canada Government type: confederation with parliamentary democracy Capital: Ottawa Administrative divisions: 10 provinces and 3 territories*; Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Northwest Territories*, Nova Scotia, Nunavut*, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Saskatchewan, Yukon Territory* Independence: 1 July 1867 (from UK) National holiday: Canada Day, 1 July (1867) Constitution: 17 April 1982 (Constitution Act); originally, the machinery of the government was set up in the British North America Act of 1867; charter of rights and unwritten customs Legal system: based on English common law, except in Quebec, where civil law system based on French law prevails; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal Executive branch: chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952), represented by Governor General Adrienne CLARKSON (since 7 October 1999) elections: none; the monarchy is hereditary; governor general appointed by the monarch on the advice of the prime minister for a five-year term; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party in the House of Commons is automatically designated by the governor general to become prime minister head of government: Prime Minister Jean CHRETIEN (since 4 November 1993); Deputy Prime Minister John MANLEY (since NA January 2002) cabinet: Federal Ministry chosen by the prime minister from among the members of his own party sitting in Parliament Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament or Parlement consists of the Senate or Senat (members appointed by the governor general with the advice of the prime minister and serve until reaching 75 years of age ; its normal limit is 104 senators) and the House of Commons or Chambre des Communes (301 seats; members elected by direct, popular vote to serve five-year terms) elections: House of Commons - last held 27 November 2000 (next to be held by 2005) election results: House of Commons - percent of vote by party - Liberal Party 41%, Conservative Alliance 26%, Bloc Quebecois 11%, New Democratic Party 9%, Progressive Conservative Party 12%; seats by party - Liberal Party 172, Conservative Alliance 66, Bloc Quebecois 38, New Democratic Party 13, Progressive Conservative Party 12; note - percent of vote by party as of January 2002 - Liberal Party 51%, Canadian Alliance 10%, Bloc Quebecois 10%, New Democratic Party 9%, Progressive Conservative Party 18%; seats by party - Liberal Party 172, Canadian Alliance 66, Bloc Quebecois 38, New Democratic Party 13, Progressive Conservative Party 12 Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Canada (judges are appointed by the prime minister through the governor general); Federal Court of Canada; Federal Court of Appeal; Provincial Courts (these are named variously Court of Appeal, Court of Queens Bench, Superior Court, Supreme Court, and Court of Justice) Political parties and leaders: Bloc Quebecois [Gilles DUCEPPE]; Canadian Alliance [Stephen HARPER]; Liberal Party [Jean CHRETIEN]; New Democratic Party [Alexa Mc DONOUGH]; Progressive Conservative Party [Joe CLARK] Political pressure groups and NA leaders: International organization ACCT, Af DB, APEC, ARF (dialogue participation: partner), As DB, ASEAN (dialogue partner), Australia Group, BIS, C, CCC, CDB, CE (observer), EAPC, EBRD, ECE, ECLAC, ESA (cooperating state), FAO, G- 7, G- 8, G-10, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MINURCA, MIPONUH, MONUC, NAM (guest), NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS, OECD, OPCW, OSCE, PCA, UN, UNAMSIL, UNCTAD, UNDOF, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNHCR, UNMEE, UNMIBH, UNMIK, UNMOP, UNMOVIC, UNTSO, UNU, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTo O, WTr O, ZC Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Michael F.
Nevertheless, with its great natural resources, skilled labor force, and modern capital plant Canada enjoys solid economic prospects.