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Costa Rica: Facts & Stats

DEMOGRAPHICS | Economy | Transportation | Culture

Demographics

Population:

Costa Rica’s population is 4,579,000 (2009 est.) and population density is 90 people per square kilometer. The country has a land area of 51,000 square kilometers, and is divided into seven provinces (Alajuela, Cartago, Guanacaste, Heredia, Limon, Puntarenas, San Jose).

The capital city of Costa Rica is San Jose which has a population of 350,535. Most of the people in Costa Rica are descendents of the original Spanish settlers. The local people of Costa Rica make up less than 2% of the total population.

Welfare:

The Social Security Institute in Costa Rica was founded in the 1940s. It was a model for other Latin American countries. Also, a number of agencies promoting human rights, including the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights were started in San Jose.

Another notable agency, the Arias Foundation for Peace and Human Progress, was created in 1988 by Oscar Arias Sanchez after he received the Nobel Peace Prize. This agency has a higher education and research division and primarily lobbies for gender equality, equal opportunity, peace, and security.

Education:

Costa Rica has a 95 percent literay rate . In 1869, education became mandatory and free for Costa Ricans. Costa Rica’s government funds education through the export of coffee. Since the 1970’s the country has invested more than 28% of its national budget on primary and secondary education.

Now there are vast numbers of elementary schools, high schools, private schools and universities in Costa Rica. Costa Rica's main Universities are the University of Costa Rica in San Jose, and the National University of Costa Rica in Heredia.

Religion:

The main religion in Costa Rica is Roman Catholic(76.3%). Even so, there is complete religious freedom in Costa Rica and you can find many different religious beliefs such as: Evangelical (13.7%), Jehovah's Witnesses (1.3%), Protestant (0.7%), other (4.8%), and even Atheist (3.2%).




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