Gibraltar





Basic Data

Gibraltar

Official Country Name: Gibraltar
Region (Map name): Europe
Population: 29,481
Language(s): English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Russian
Literacy rate: 80%

Located at the tip of the Iberian Peninsula, the limestone rock outcropping that is Gibraltar stretches nearly to Africa and serves as a gateway to the Mediterranean. Gibraltar's media community enjoys a high degree of freedom and independence.

The city's most important newspaper is the Gibraltar Chronicle , which publishes daily Monday through Saturday in print and online. Established in 1801, the independent publication is one of the oldest daily newspapers in the world in continuous production. Its approximate circulation is 4,500. The weekly newspaper Panorama has appeared Mondays since 1975, but it also runs a daily online edition which was founded in 1997. Both print and Web editions cover local and international news. Vox, founded in 1955, is a weekly bilingual newspaper appearing every Friday in both Spanish and English.

There are five radio stations, one AM and four FM, serving 37,000 radios. One television station broadcasts to 10,000 televisions. There are two Internet service providers.

Gibraltar belonged to Spain until 1713, when it was ceded to Britain in the Treaty of Utrect. It has remained a sore spot ever since. In 1967, Gibraltarians chose to remain a British dependency, and Spain closed its border with the country between 1967 and 1985.

However, in 2000 Britain and Spain finally reached an agreement over the area's administrative status. Gibraltar's head of state is the British monarch, who is represented locally by a London-appointed governor and commander in chief. Heading the government and the unicameral, 18-member House of Assembly is a chief minister. The Governor does not actively participate in the government but does approve all legislation.

The population of Gibraltar is approximately 30,000, and the literacy rate is 80 percent. English is the official language, but Spanish is also widely spoken. Because of its location, Gibraltar is an international conference center and boasts an extensive shipping trade. Accordingly, it garners significant income from offshore banking, tourism, and shipping service fees. British military presence also contributes to the economy, although its percentage of the gross national product is declining.

Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). World Fact Book 2001 . 2001. Available from www.cia.gov .

Gibraltar Chronicle home page. 2002. Available from www.chronicle.gi .

Government of Gibraltar Information Services. 2001. Available from www.gibraltar.gov.gi .

Panorama home page. 2002. Available from www.panorama.gi .

Worldinformation.com . 2002. Available from www.worldinformation.com .

Jenny B. Davis

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