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Andorra country profile

Map of Andorra

Almost hidden on the border between France and Spain, the tiny principality of Andorra is a land of narrow valleys and mountainous landscapes.

The mainstay of the economy is tourism.

An estimated 10 million people visit each year, drawn by the winter sports, summer climate and duty-free goods.

Overview

For more than 700 years Andorra has been ruled jointly by the leader of France and the Spanish Bishop of Urgel.

The first Andorran Constitution was passed in 1993, establishing a parliamentary co-principality.

The co-princes remain Andorra's heads of state but the roles are largely honorary.

The country's banking sector enjoys partial tax-haven status.

Andorra is not a member of the EU, but enjoys a special relationship with it and uses the euro.

Facts

  • Full name: The Principality of Andorra
  • Population: 84,864 (UN, 2010)
  • Capital: Andorra la Vella
  • Major languages: Catalan (official language), Spanish, French
  • Major religion: Christianity
  • Life expectancy: 81 years (men), 87 years (women)
  • Monetary unit: 1 euro = 100 cents
  • Main exports: Leather goods
  • GNI per capita:US 41,780 (World Bank 2008)
  • Internet domain: .ad
  • International dialling code: +376

Leaders

Co-heads of state: Joan Enric Vives i Sicilia, Bishop of Urgel, Spain, and Nicolas Sarkozy of France

Head of government: Antoni Marti

Antoni Marti

Antoni Marti took over as head of government after his Democrats for Andorra coalition heavily defeated the incumbent Social Democratic Party (PS) in an early parliamentary election.

His predecessor, Jaume Bartumeu Cassany, had called the election when the opposition blocked the government's budget in parliament for the second year running.

The Democrats won 55% against 35% for Mr Cassany's PS, capturing 21 of 28 seats in the General Council (parliament).

Mr Marti campaigned on a platform of opposing the introduction of an income tax proposed by Mr Cassany.

A trained architect, Mr Marti was mayor of Escaldes, Andorra's second-largest town, from 2004-11.

Media

The Andorran media scene is partly shaped by the proximity to France and Spain.

Andorrans have access to broadcasts from both countries, and for many years Andorra was home to Sud Radio, a powerful station broadcasting to southwest France.

The constitution provides for freedom of speech and of the press. There were 67,200 internet users by June 2010, around 80% of the population (InternetWorldStats).

The press

Television

  • TVA - public, operated by Radio i Televisio d'Andorra

Radio



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Compiled by BBC Monitoring

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