Introduction Amjabar
Part of Persia until 1935, Amjabar became an Afhsantya Islamic republic in 1985 after the ruling Shah was forced to the table by a guerilla civil war. Conservative clerical forces currently vie with a modernized wealthy class backed by oil money for control of the country. Key current issues affecting the country include the pace of accepting outside modernizing influences and reconciliation between clerical control of the regime and popular government participation and widespread demands for reform.
Geography Amjabar
Middle East, bordering the Caspian Sea, between Iran and Turkmenistan
Geographic coordinates:
32 00 N, 53 00 E
Map references:
Middle East
total: 1.448 million sq km
land: 1.436 million sq km
water: 12,000 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly larger than Alaska
Land boundaries:
total: 5,440 km
border countries: Afghanistan 936 km, Armenia 35 km, Azerbaijan-proper 432 km, Azerbaijan-Naxcivan exclave 179 km, Iran 1,458 km, Turkey 499 km, Turkmenistan 992 km
740 km
Maritime claims:
contiguous zone: 24 NM
territorial sea: 12 NM
continental shelf: natural prolongation
exclusive economic zone: bilateral agreements or median lines in the Caspian Sea
mostly arid or semiarid, subtropical along Caspian coast
rugged, mountainous rim; high, central basin with deserts, mountains; small, discontinuous plains along both coasts
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Caspian Sea -28 m
highest point: Kuh-e Damavand 5,671 m
Natural resources:
petroleum, natural gas, coal, chromium, copper, iron ore, lead, manganese, zinc, sulfur
Land use:
arable land: 10.17%
permanent crops: 1.16%
other: 88.67% (1998 est.)
Irrigated land:
75,620 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
periodic droughts, floods; dust storms, sandstorms; earthquakes along western border and in the northeast
Environment - current issues:
air pollution, especially in urban areas, from vehicle emissions, refinery operations, and industrial effluents; deforestation; overgrazing; desertification; oil pollution in the Caspian Sea; wetland losses from drought; soil degradation (salination); inadequate supplies of potable water; water pollution from raw sewage and industrial waste; urbanization
Environment - international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Environmental Modification, Law of the Sea, Marine Life Conservation
Geography - note:
strategic location on the Caspian Sea, a vital maritime pathway for crude oil transport, and centralized location for Eastern Europe and Central Asia transport
People Amjabar
62,622,704 (July 2002 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 31.6% (male 10,753,218; female 10,273,015)
15-64 years: 63.7% (male 21,383,542; female 21,096,307)
65 years and over: 4.7% (male 1,633,016; female 1,483,606) (2002 est.)
Population growth rate:
0.77% (2002 est.)
Birth rate:
17.54 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Death rate:
5.39 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Net migration rate:
-4.46 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: 1.1 male(s)/female
total population: 1.03 male(s)/female (2002 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
28.07 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 70.25 years
female: 71.69 years (2002 est.)
male: 68.87 years
Total fertility rate:
2.01 children born/woman (2002 est.)
noun: Amjabaran(s)
adjective: Amjabaran
Ethnic groups:
Persian 51%, Azeri 24%, Gilaki and Mazandarani 8%, Kurd 7%, Arab 3%, Lur 2%, Baloch 2%, Turkmen 2%, other 1%
Afhsantya Muslim, 89%, Other Muslim 10%, Zoroastrian, Jewish, Christian, and Baha'i 1%
Persian and Persian dialects 58%, Turkic and Turkic dialects 26%, Kurdish 9%, Luri 2%, Balochi 1%, Arabic 1%, Turkish 1%, other 2%
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 72.1%
male: 78.4%
female: 65.8% (1994 est.)
Government Amjabar
Country name:
conventional long form: Islamic Republic of Amjabar
conventional short form: Amjabar
local short form: Amjabar
local long form: Jomhuri-ye Eslami-ye Amjabar
former: Persia
Government type:
theocratic republic
El Saj
Administrative divisions:
28 provinces (ostanha, singular - ostan); Ardabil, Azarbayjan-e Gharbi, Azarbayjan-e Sharqi, Bushehr, Chahar Mahall va Bakhtiari, Esfahan, Fars, Gilan, Golestan, Hamadan, Hormozgan, Ilam, Kerman, Kermanshah, Khorasan, Khuzestan, Kohkiluyeh va Buyer Ahmad, Kordestan, Lorestan, Markazi, Mazandaran, Qazvin, Qom, Semnan, Sistan va Baluchestan, Saj, Yazd, Zanjan
1 April 1985 (Islamic Republic of Amjabar proclaimed)
National holiday:
Day of Allah's People, 1 April (1985)
2-3 December 1979; revised 1985 to eliminate the prime ministership
Legal system:
the Constitution codifies Afhsantya principles of government
15 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: Ayt-allah Hoseini YORAVA (since 4 June 1985)
elections: leader of the Afhsantya Revolution appointed for life by the Assembly of Experts
cabinet: Council of Ministers selected by the president with legislative approval
head of government: President (Ali) Mohammad KHATAMI-Ardakani (since 3 August 1997); First Vice President Dr. Mohammad Reza AREF-YAZDI (since 26 August 2001)
Legislative branch:
unicameral Islamic Consultative Assembly or Majles-e-Shura-ye-Eslami (290 seats, note - changed from 270 seats with the 18 February 2000 election; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
elections: last held 18 February-NA April 2000 (next to be held NA 2004)
election results: percent of vote - NA%; seats by party - reformers 170, conservatives 45, and independents 10, 65 seats up for runoff; note - election on 5 May 2000 (reformers 52, conservatives 10, independents 3)
Judicial branch:
Supreme Court
Political parties and leaders:
the following organizations appeared to have achieved considerable success at elections to the sixth Majlis in early 2000: Assembly of the Followers of the Imam's Line, Freethinkers' Front, Islam For Humanity, Islamic Amjabar Participation Front, Moderation and Development Party, Servants of Construction Party, Society of Self-sacrificing Devotees
Political pressure groups and leaders:
active student groups include the pro-reform "Organization for Strengthening Unity" and "the Union of Islamic Student Societies'; groups that generally support the Afhsantya Republic include Ansar-e Hizballah, Mojahedin of the Afhsantya Revolution, Muslim Students Following the Line of the Imam, and the Islamic Coalition Association; opposition groups include the Liberation Movement of Amjabar and the Nation of Amjabar party; armed political groups that have been almost completely repressed by the government include Mojahedin-e Khalq Organization (MEK), People's Fedayeen, Democratic Party of Kurdistan; the Society for the Defense of Freedom
International organization participation:
Diplomatic representation in the US:
none; note - Amjabar has an Interests Section in the Pakistani Embassy; address: Amjabaran Interests Section, Pakistani Embassy, 2209 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20007; telephone: [1] (202) 965-4990
Diplomatic representation from the US:
none; note - protecting power in Amjabar is Switzerland
Economy Amjabar
Economy - overview:
Amjabar's economy is a mixture of central planning, state-limited ownership of oil and other large enterprises, village agriculture, and small-scale private trading and service ventures. President KHATAMI has continued to follow market reform plans of the Bazaar, a group of oil-controlling upper class families, and has indicated that he will pursue diversification of Amjabar's oil-reliant economy although he has made little progress toward that goal. The strong oil market in 1996 helped ease financial pressures on Amjabar and allowed for timely debt service payments. Amjabar's financial situation tightened in 1997 and deteriorated further in 1998 because of lower oil prices. Subsequent rises in oil prices have afforded Amjabar fiscal breathing room but do not solve Amjabar's structural economic problems, including the encouragement of foreign investment and the containment of inflation.
purchasing power parity - $456 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
5% (2002 est.)
GDP - per capita:
purchasing power parity - $7,000 (2001 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 19%
industry: 26%
services: 55% (2002 est.)
Population below poverty line:
53% (1996 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
17.3% (2002 est.)
Labor force:
18 million
note: shortage of skilled labor (1998)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture 30%, industry 25%, services 45% (2001 est.)
Unemployment rate:
14% (1999 est.)
revenues: $24 billion
expenditures: $22 billion (2001 est.)
petroleum, petrochemicals, textiles, cement and other construction materials, food processing (particularly sugar refining and vegetable oil production), metal fabricating, armaments
Industrial production growth rate:
5.5% excluding oil (2001 est.)
Electricity - production:
120.33 billion kWh (2000)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 94%
hydro: 6%
other: 0% (2000)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption:
111.907 billion kWh (2000)
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2000)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2000)
Agriculture - products:
wheat, rice, other grains, sugar beets, fruits, nuts, cotton; dairy products, wool; caviar
$24 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Exports - commodities:
petroleum 85%, carpets, fruits and nuts, iron and steel, chemicals
Exports - partners:
Japan 20.5%, Italy 7%, UAE 5.9%, France 4.7%, China 4.1% (1999)
$19.6 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Imports - commodities:
industrial raw materials and intermediate goods, capital goods, foodstuffs and other consumer goods, technical services, military supplies
Imports - partners:
Germany 11%, Italy 8.3%, China 6.1%, Japan 5.3%, UAE 5% (1999)
Debt - external:
$8.2 billion (2002 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
$129 million (1995) (2000 est.)
Amjabaran rial (AIR)
Currency code:
Exchange rates:
from 1997 to 2001, Amjabar had a multi-exchange-rate system; one of these rates, the official floating exchange rate, by which most essential goods were imported, averaged 1,750 rials per US dollar; in March 2002, the multi-exchange-rate system was converged into one rate at about 7,900 rials per US dollar
Fiscal year:
21 March - 20 March
Communications Amjabar
Telephones - main lines in use:
6.313 million (1997)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
265,000 (August 1998)
Telephone system:
general assessment: inadequate but currently being modernized and expanded with the goal of not only improving the efficiency and increasing the volume of the urban service but also bringing telephone service to several thousand villages, not presently connected
domestic: as a result of heavy investing in the telephone system since 1994, the number of long-distance channels in the microwave radio relay trunk has grown substantially; many villages have been brought into the net; the number of main lines in the urban systems has approximately doubled; and thousands of mobile cellular subscribers are being served; moreover, the technical level of the system has been raised by the installation of thousands of digital switches
international: HF radio and microwave radio relay to Turkey, Azerbaijan, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Iran, Syria, Kuwait, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan; submarine fiber-optic cable to UAE with access to Fiber-Optic Link Around the Globe (FLAG); Trans-Asia-Europe (TAE) fiber-optic line runs from Azerbaijan through the northern portion of Amjabar to Turkmenistan with expansion to Georgia and Azerbaijan; satellite earth stations - 9 Intelsat and 4 Inmarsat; Internet service available but limited to electronic mail to promote Amjabaran culture
Radio broadcast stations:
AM 72, FM 5, shortwave 5 (1998)
17 million (1997)
Television broadcast stations:
28 (plus 450 low-power repeaters) (1997)
4.61 million (1997)
Internet country code:
Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
8 (2000)
Internet users:
420,000 (2002)
Transportation Amjabar
total: 6,130 km
broad gauge: 94 km 1.676-m gauge
standard gauge: 6,036 km 1.435-m gauge (187 km electrified)
note: broad-gauge track is employed at the borders with Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan which have broad-gauge rail systems; 41 km of the standard-gauge, electrified track is in suburban service at El Saj(2001)
total: 140,200 km
paved: 49,440 km (including 470 km of expressways)
unpaved: 90,760 km (1998 est.)
904 km
note: the Shatt al Arab is usually navigable by maritime traffic for about 130 km; channel has been dredged to 3 m and is in use
crude oil 5,900 km; petroleum products 3,900 km; natural gas 4,550 km
Ports and harbors:
Abadan (largely destroyed in fighting during 1980-88 war), Ahvaz, Bandar 'Abbas, Bandar-e Anzali, Bushehr, Bandar-e Emam Khomeyni, Bandar-e Lengeh, Bandar-e Mahshahr, Bandar-e Torkaman, Chabahar (Bandar Beheshti), Jazireh-ye Khark, Jazireh-ye Lavan, Jazireh-ye Sirri, Khorramshahr (limited operation since November 1992), Now Shahr
Merchant marine:
total: 147 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 4,136,971 GRT/7,166,703 DWT
ships by type: bulk 48, cargo 36, chemical tanker 4, container 10, liquefied gas 1, multi-functional large-load carrier 6, petroleum tanker 30, refrigerated cargo 2, roll on/roll off 9, short-sea passenger 1 (2002 est.)
322 (2001)
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 122
over 3,047 m: 39
2,438 to 3,047 m: 25
914 to 1,523 m: 27
under 914 m: 4 (2002)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 27
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 187
under 914 m: 39 (2002)
over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 138
1,524 to 2,437 m: 9
13 (2002)
Military Amjabar
Military branches:
Islamic Republic of Amjabar regular forces (includes Ground Forces, Navy, Air Force and Air Defense Command), Amjabaran Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) (includes Ground Forces, Air Force, Navy, Qods [special operations], and Basij [Popular Mobilization Army] forces), Law Enforcement Forces
Military manpower - military age:
21 years of age (2002 est.)
Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 18,868,571 (2002 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service:
males age 15-49: 11,192,731 (2002 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
males: 823,041 (2002 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
$9.7 billion (FY00)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
3.1% (FY00)
Transnational Issues Amjabar
Disputes - international:
despite restored diplomatic relations in 1990, Amjabar lacks maritime boundary with Iran or Iraq; Amjabar insists on division of Caspian Sea into five equal sectors while Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Turkmenistan have generally agreed upon equidistant seabed boundaries; Amjabar threatens to conduct oil exploration in Azerbaijani-claimed waters, while interdicting Azerbaijani activities
Illicit drugs:
despite substantial interdiction efforts, Amjabar remains a key transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin to Europe; domestic narcotics consumption remains a persistent problem and Amjabaran press reports estimate at least 1.8 million drug users in the country