Seychelles Population: 94,633


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A lengthy struggle between France and Great Britain for the islands ended in 1814, when they were ceded to the latter. During colonial rule, a plantation-based economy developed that relied on imported labor, primarily from European colonies in Africa. Independence came in 1976. Following a coup d’etat in 1977, the country was a socialist one-party state until adopting a new constitution and holding free elections in 1993. President France-Albert RENE, who had served since 1977, was reelected in 2001, but stepped down in 2004. Vice President James Alix MICHEL took over the presidency and in 2006 was elected to a new five-year term; he was reelected in 2011 and again in 2015. In 2016, James MICHEL resigned and handed over the presidency to his vice-president, Danny FAURE.

    The smallest African country; the constitution of the Republic of Seychelles lists 155 islands: 42 granitic and 113 coralline; by far the largest island is Mahe, which is home to about 90% of the population and the site of the capital city of Victoria
Location: archipelago in the Indian Ocean, northeast of Madagascar
Geographic coordinates: 4 35 S, 55 40 E
Area: total: 455 sq km
land: 455 sq km
water: 0 sq km

Size comparison: 2.5 times the size of Washington, DC
Land Boundaries: 0 km
Coastline: 491 km
Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
Climate: tropical marine; humid; cooler season during southeast monsoon (late May to September); warmer season during northwest monsoon (March to May)
Terrain: Mahe Group is volcanic with a narrow coastal strip and rocky, hilly interior; others are coral, flat, elevated reefs
Natural resources: fish, coconuts (copra), cinnamon trees
Land use: agricultural land: 6.5% (2011 est.) arable land: 2.2% (2011 est.)
permanent crops: 4.3% (2011 est.) permanent pasture: 0% (2011 est.) forest: 88.5% (2011 est.)
other: 5% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land: 3 sq km (2012)
Natural hazards: lies outside the cyclone belt, so severe storms are rare; occasional short droughts
Current Environment Issues: water supply depends on catchments to collect rainwater; water pollution; biodiversity maintainance
International Environment Agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
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Nationality: noun: Seychellois (singular and plural)
adjective: Seychellois
Ethnic groups: predominantly creole (mainly of East African and Malagasy heritage); also French, Indian, Chinese, and Arab populations
Languages: Seychellois Creole (official) 89.1%, English (official) 5.1%, French (official) 0.7%, other 3.8%, unspecified 1.4% (2010 est.)
Religions: Roman Catholic 76.2%, Protestant 10.5% (Anglican 6.1%, Pentecostal Assembly 1.5%, Seventh Day Adventist 1.2%, other Protestant 1.7%), other Christian 2.4%, Hindu 2.4%, Muslim 1.6%, other non-Christian 1.1%, unspecified 4.8%, none 0.9% (2010 est.)
Population: 94,633 (July 2018 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 19.52% (male 9,482 /female 8,989)
15-24 years: 12.96% (male 6,461 /female 5,806)
25-54 years: 49.29% (male 24,841 /female 21,800)
55-64 years: 10.44% (male 5,008 /female 4,870)
65 years and over: 7.79% (male 2,974 /female 4,402) (2018 est.)
Dependency ratios: total dependency ratio: 42.8 (2015 est.)
youth dependency ratio: 31 (2015 est.)
elderly dependency ratio: 11.7 (2015 est.)
potential support ratio: 8.5 (2015 est.)
Median age: total: 35.8 years
male: 35.3 years
female: 36.5 years (2018 est.)
Population growth rate: 0.74% (2018 est.)
Birth rate: 13.4 births/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Death rate: 7 deaths/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Net migration rate: 1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Urbanization: urban population: 56.7% of total population (2018)
rate of urbanization: 1.26% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Major urban areas - population: 28,000 VICTORIA (capital) (2018)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.11 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.14 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.68 male(s)/female
total population: 1.06 male(s)/female (2018 est.)
Infant mortality rate: total: 9.7 deaths/1,000 live births male: 12.1 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 7.2 deaths/1,000 live births (2018 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 75.2 years male: 70.7 years
female: 79.8 years (2018 est.)
Total fertility rate: 1.85 children born/woman (2018 est.)
Physicians density: 0.95 physicians/1,000 population (2016)
Hospital bed density: 3.6 beds/1,000 population (2011)
Drinking water source: improved:
urban: 95.7% of population
rural: 95.7% of population
total: 95.7% of population

urban: 4.3% of population
rural: 4.3% of population
total: 4.3% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility access: improved:
urban: 98.4% of population (2015 est.)
rural: 98.4% of population (2015 est.)
total: 98.4% of population (2015 est.)

urban: 1.6% of population (2015 est.)
rural: 1.6% of population (2015 est.)
total: 1.6% of population (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: n/a
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: n/a
HIV/AIDS - deaths: n/a
Obesity - adult prevalence rate: 14% (2016)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight: 3.6% (2012)
Education expenditures: 4.4% of GDP (2016)
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write (2012 est.)
total population: 91.8%
male: 91.4%
female: 92.3% (2012 est.)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education): total: 16 years male: 15 years female: 16 years (2016)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24: total: 10.9% male: 10.5% female: 11.4% (2017 est.)
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Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Seychelles
conventional short form: Seychelles
local long form: Republic of Seychelles
local short form: Seychelles
etymology: named by French Captain Corneille Nicholas MORPHEY after Jean Moreau de SECHELLES, the finance minister of France, in 1756
Government type: presidential republic
Capital: name: Victoria
geographic coordinates: 4 37 S, 55 27 E
time difference: UTC+4 (9 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
etymology: founded as L'etablissement in 1778 by French colonists, the town was renamed in 1841 by the British after Queen Victoria (1819-1901)
Administrative divisions: 25 administrative districts; Anse aux Pins, Anse Boileau, Anse Etoile, Anse Royale, Au Cap, Baie Lazare, Baie Sainte Anne, Beau Vallon, Bel Air, Bel Ombre, Cascade, Glacis, Grand Anse Mahe, Grand Anse Praslin, Inner Islands, La Riviere Anglaise, Les Mamalles, Mont Buxton, Mont Fleuri, Plaisance, Pointe Larue, Port Glaud, Roche Caiman, Saint Louis, Takamaka
Independence: 29 June 1976 (from the UK)
National holiday: Constitution Day, 18 June (1993); Independence Day (National Day), 29 June (1976)
Constitution: history: previous 1970, 1979; latest drafted May 1993, approved by referendum 18 June 1993, effective 23 June 1993 amendments: proposed by the National Assembly; passage requires at least two-thirds majority vote by the National Assembly; passage of amendments affecting the country’s sovereignty, symbols and languages, the supremacy of the constitution, fundamental rights and freedoms, amendment procedures, and dissolution of the Assembly also requires approval by at least 60% of voters in a referendum; amended several times, last in 2017 (2017)
Legal system: mixed legal system of English common law, French civil law, and customary law
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state: President Danny FAURE (since 16 October 2016); Vice President Vincent MERITON (since 28 October 2016); note - James Alix MICHEL resigned the presidency effective 16 October 2016; the president is both chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Danny FAURE (since 16 October 2016); Vice President Vincent MERITON (since 28 October 2016)

cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 5-year term (eligible for 1 additional term); election last held on 3-5 December 2015 with a runoff on 16-18 December 2015 (next to be held in December 2020)

election results: President James Alix MICHEL reelected president in second round; percent of vote - James Alix MICHEL (PL) 50.2%, Wavel RAMKALAWAN (SNP) 49.8%
Legislative branch: description: unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (up to 35 seats - the Assembly elected in September 2016 has 33 members; 25 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote and up to 10 members elected by proportional representation vote; members serve 5-year terms)

elections: last held on 8-10 September 2016 (next to be held in 2021); note - the National Assembly was dissolved in July 2011 resulting in early elections

election results: percent of vote by party - LDS 49.6%, PL 49.2%, other 1.2%; seats by party - LDS 19, PL 14; composition - men 26, women 7, percent of women 21.2%
Judicial branch: highest courts: Seychelles Court of Appeal (consists of the court president and 4 justices); Supreme Court of Seychelles (consists of the chief justice and 9 puisne judges); Constitutional Court (consists of 3 Supreme Court judges) judge selection and term of office: all judges appointed by the president of the republic upon the recommendation of the Constitutional Appointments Authority, a 3-member body, with 1 member appointed by the president of the republic, 1 by the opposition leader in the National Assembly, and 1 by the other 2 appointees; judges serve until retirement at age 70

subordinate courts: Magistrates' Courts of Seychelles; Family Tribunal for issues such as domestic violence, child custody, and maintenance; Employment Tribunal for labor-related disputes
Political parties and leaders: Lafors Seselwa Demokratik  or LSD [Martin AGLAE] Seselwa (Seychelles) United Party or SUP [Robert ERNESTA] (formerly the New Democratic Party or NDP) Seychelles National Party or SNP [Wavel RAMKALAWAN] (formerly the United Opposition or UO) Seychelles Party for Social Justice and Democracy or SPSD [Alexia AMESBURY] Seychelles Patriotic Movement or SPM [Vincent LARUER] Seychelloise Alliance (Lalyans Seselwa) [Patrick PILLAY] Seychellois Democratic Alliance (Linyon Demokratik Seselwa) or LDS [Roger MANCIENNE] (includes SNP, SPSD, and SUP) United Seychelles or US [Vincent MERITON] (formerly People's Party (Parti Lepep) or PL; (formerly SPPF)
International organization participation: ACP, AfDB, AOSIS, AU, C, CD, COMESA, EITI (candidate country), FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (NGOs), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, InOC, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITU, MIGA, NAM, OIF, OPCW, SADC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO (observer)
National symbol(s): coco de mer (sea coconut);
national colors: blue, yellow, red, white, green
National anthem: name: "Koste Seselwa" (Seychellois Unite)
lyrics/music: David Francois Marc ANDRE and George Charles Robert PAYET

note: adopted 1996
Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Ronald Jean JUMEAU (since 8 September 2017)
chancery: 800 Second Avenue, Suite 400C, New York, NY 10017
telephone: [1] (212) 972-1785
FAX: [1] (212) 972-1786
consulate(s) general: New York
Diplomatic representation from the US: the US does not have an embassy in Seychelles; the US Ambassador to Mauritius is accredited to Seychelles
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Since independence in 1976, per capita output in this Indian Ocean archipelago has expanded to roughly seven times the pre-independence, near-subsistence level, moving the island into the high income group of countries. Growth has been led by the tourist sector, which directly employs about 26% of the labor force and directly and indirectly accounts for more than 55% of GDP, and by tuna fishing. In recent years, the government has encouraged foreign investment to upgrade hotels and tourism industry services. At the same time, the government has moved to reduce the dependence on tourism by promoting the development of the offshore financial, information, and communication sectors, and renewable energy. In 2008, having depleted its foreign exchange reserves, Seychelles defaulted on interest payments due on a $230 million Eurobond, requested assistance from the IMF, and immediately enacted a number of significant structural reforms, including liberalization of the exchange rate, reform of the public sector to include layoffs, and the sale of some state assets. In December 2013, the IMF declared that Seychelles had successfully transitioned to a market-based economy with full employment and a fiscal surplus. However, state-owned enterprises still play a prominent role in the economy. Effective 1 January 2017, Seychelles was no longer eligible for trade benefits under the US African Growth and Opportunities Act after having gained developed country status. Seychelles grew at 5% in 2017 because of a strong tourism sector and low commodity prices. The Seychellois Government met the IMF’s performance criteria for 2017 but recognizes a need to make additional progress to reduce high income inequality, represented by a Gini coefficient of 46.8. As a very small open economy dependent on tourism, Seychelles remains vulnerable to developments such as economic downturns in countries that supply tourists, natural disasters, and changes in local climatic conditions and ocean temperature. One of the main challenges facing the government is implementing strategies that will increase Seychelles' long-term resilience to climate change without weakening economic growth.
GDP (purchasing power parity): $2.75 billion (2017 est.) $2.612 billion (2016 est.) $2.499 billion (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP (official exchange rate): $1.498 billion (2017 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: 5.3% (2017 est.) 4.5% (2016 est.) 4.9% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP): $29,300 (2017 est.) $27,800 (2016 est.) $26,900 (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
Gross national saving: 8.1% of GDP (2017 est.) 10.2% of GDP (2016 est.) 15.2% of GDP (2015 est.) GDP - composition, by end use: household consumption: 52.7% (2017 est.) government consumption: 34.4% (2017 est.) investment in fixed capital: 26.7% (2017 est.) investment in inventories: 0% (2017 est.) exports of goods and services: 79.4% (2017 est.) imports of goods and services: -93.2% (2017 est.) GDP - composition, by sector of origin: agriculture: 2.5% (2017 est.) industry: 13.8% (2017 est.) services: 83.7% (2017 est.)
Agriculture - products: coconuts, cinnamon, vanilla, sweet potatoes, cassava (manioc, tapioca), copra, bananas; tuna
Industries: fishing, tourism, beverages
Industrial production growth rate: 2.3% (2017 est.)
Labor force: 47,210 (2017 est.)
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture: 3%
industry: 23%
services: 74% (2006)
Unemployment rate: 3% (2017 est.) 2.7% (2016 est.)
Population below poverty line: 39.3% (2013 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 4.7%
highest 10%: 15.4% (2007)
Distribution of family income - Gini index: 46.8 (2013 est.)
Budget: revenues: 593.4 million (2017 est.)
expenditures: 600.7 million (2017 est.)
Taxes and other revenues: 39.6% (of GDP) (2017 est.) Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-): -0.5% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Public debt: 63.6% of GDP (2017 est.) 69.1% of GDP (2016 est.)
Fiscal year: calendar year
Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.9% (2017 est.) -1% (2016 est.)
Current account balance: -$307 million (2017 est.) -$286 million (2016 est.)
Exports: $564.8 million (2017 est.) $477.6 million (2016 est.)
Exports - commodities: canned tuna, frozen fish, petroleum products (reexports)
Exports - partners: UAE 28.5%, France 24%, UK 13.8%, Italy 8.9%, Germany 4.6% (2017)
Imports: $1.155 billion (2017 est.) $991 million (2016 est.)
Imports - commodities: machinery and equipment, foodstuffs, petroleum products, chemicals, other manufactured goods
Imports - partners: UAE 13.4%, France 9.4%, Spain 5.7%, South Africa 5% (2017)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $545.2 million (31 December 2017 est.) $523.5 million (31 December 2016 est.)
Debt - external: $2.559 billion (31 December 2017 est.) $2.651 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares: n/a
Exchange rates: Seychelles rupees (SCR) per US dollar - 13.64 (2017 est.) 13.319 (2016 est.) 13.319 (2015 est.) 13.314 (2014 est.) 12.747 (2013 est.)
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Electricity - production: 350 million kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - consumption: 325.5 million kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity: 88,000 kW (2016 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels: 91% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels: 0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants: 0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources: 9% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Crude oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2017 est.)
Crude oil - exports: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Crude oil - imports: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Crude oil - proved reserves: 0 bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption: 7,300 bbl/day (2016 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports: 0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports: 7,225 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - consumption: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves: 0 cu m (1 January 2014 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy: 1.15 million Mt (2017 est.)
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Cellular Phones in use: total subscriptions: 167,282
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 178 (2017 est.)
Telephone system: general assessment: effective system; radiotelephone communications between islands in the archipelago (2018)

domestic: fixed-line 21 per 100 and mobile-cellular teledensity is 178 telephones per 100 persons (2018)

international: country code - 248; direct radiotelephone communications with adjacent island countries and African coastal countries; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean); Seychelles East Africa System (SEAS) submarine cable landed in Beau Vallon, connecting Seychelles with Tanzania
Broadcast media: the national broadcaster, Seychelles Broadcasting Corporation (SBC), which is funded by taxpayer money, operates the only terrestrial TV station, which provides local programming and airs broadcasts from international services; a privately owned Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) channel also provides local programming multi-channel cable and satellite TV are available through 2 providers; the national broadcaster operates 1 AM and 1 FM radio station; there are 2 privately operated radio stations; transmissions of 2 international broadcasters are accessible in Victoria (2019)
Internet country code: .sc
Internet users: total: 52,664
percent of population: 56.5% (July 2016 est.)
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Airports: 14 (2013)
Airports (paved runways): total 7
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 (2017)
914 to 1,523 m: 5 (2017)
under 914 m: 1 (2017)
Airports (unpaved runways): total 7
914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2013)
under 914 m: 5 (2013)
Heliports: 1 (2013)
Roadways: total 526 km
(2015) paved: 514 km (2015)
unpaved: 12 km (2015)
Merchant marine: total 24

by type: general cargo 4, oil tanker 6, other 14 (2018)
Ports and terminals: major seaport(s): Victoria
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Military branches: Seychelles People’s Defence Forces (SPDF): Army (includes infantry, Special Forces (Tazar)), Coast Guard, Air Force, and Presidential Protection Unit (2019)
Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service (younger with parental consent); no conscription (2012)
Military expenditures: 1.57% of GDP (2017) 1.29% of GDP (2016) 1.21% of GDP (2015) 2.17% of GDP (2014) 0.98% of GDP (2013)
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 Transnational Issues
Disputes - International: Mauritius and Seychelles claim the Chagos Islands (UK-administered British Indian Ocean Territory)
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