Principality of Monaco
Principauté de Monaco
CAPITAL : The seat of government is at Monaco-Ville.
FLAG : The national flag consists of a red horizontal stripe above a white horizontal stripe.
ANTHEM : Hymne Monégasque, beginning "Principauté Monaco, ma patrie" ("Principality of Monaco, my fatherland").
MONETARY UNIT : Monaco uses the euro and all monetary restrictions in effect in France apply also in Monaco. The euro is divided into 100 cents. There are coins in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 cents and 1 euro and 2 euros. There are notes of 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, and 500 euros. As of May 2003, €1 = $1.0977 (or $1 = €0.911). Monégasque coins also circulate; denominations are 10, 20, and 50 centimes, and 1, 2, 5, 10, and 50 francs. Fr1 = $0.17699 (or $1 = Fr5.65) as of May 2003.
WEIGHTS AND MEASURES : The metric system is the legal standard.
HOLIDAYS : New Year's Day, 1 January; St. Dévôte, 27 January; Labor Day, 1 May; Assumption, 15 August; All Saints' Day, 1 November; National Day, 19 November; Immaculate Conception, 8 December; Christmas, 25 December. Movable religious holidays include Easter Monday, Ascension, Pentecost Monday, and Fête-Dieu.
TIME : 1 PM = noon GMT.
There are four main areas (determined more by economic activity than geographic difference): La Condamine, the business district around the port; Monte Carlo, the site of the famous casino, which is at a higher elevation; Monaco-Ville, on a rocky promontory about 60 m (200 ft) above sea level; and Fontvieille, a 22 ha (54 acre) industrial area of La Condamine that was reclaimed by landfill in the 1960s and 1970s.
Winters are mild, with temperatures rarely falling below freezing and with a January average of about 8° C (46° F ). Summer heat is tempered by sea breezes; the average maximum in July and August is 26° C (79° F ). Rainfall averages about 77 cm (30 in) a year, and some 300 days a year have no precipitation whatsoever.
Palms, aloes, carobs, tamarisks, mimosas, and other Mediterranean trees, shrubs, and flowers are abundant. Monaco does not have a distinctive fauna.
There is a long waiting list for Monégasque citizenship. A 1992 law allows Monégasque women to confer citizenship on their children. In 1999, the net migration rate was 4.17 migrants per 1,000 population. In 2000, more than two-thirds of the residents were non-citizens. The government views the migration levels as satisfactory.
On the evidence of certain place names, the native Monégasques are said to be of Rhaetian stock; they make up only 16% of the population. The foreign residents are a highly cosmopolitan group: 47% are French; 16% are Italian; and various other groups comprise the remaining 21%. French citizens are treated as if in France.
French is the official language. English and Italian are also widely spoken. Many inhabitants speak the Monégasque language, which has its origins in the Genoese dialect of Italian and the Provençal language of southern France.
About 90% of the population adheres to Roman Catholicism, which is the official state religion. Freedom of worship is guaranteed by the constitution. Monaco is also part of the diocese of Gibraltar of the Church of England. There are five Catholic churches and one cathedral in the principality, two Protestant churches, and one Jewish synagogue. Though there are a small number of Muslims, there are no mosques.
France assumed responsibility for the defense of Monaco as part of the Versailles Treaty in 1919. There is no army in the principality. A private guard protects the royal family, and a police force of 390 ensures public safety.
There is no agriculture.
There is a dairy industry serving local needs.
Some fishing is carried on to meet domestic requirements. The annual catch was 3,000 tons in 2000. Monaco actively engages in marine science research, and in marine life preservation. The Oceanographic Institute has been studying the effects of radiation in the ocean since 1961.
There are no forests.
There was no mining.
Services are provided by the Monégasque Electric Co. and Monégasque Gas Co. In 1991, standby electrical capacity totaled 10,000 kW; power is supplied by France.
Statistical information is not available. Foreign trade is included in the statistics for France, with which Monaco has a customs union.
The economy is driven by such foreign currency-earning activities as banking and tourism. Since separate records are not kept of Monaco's foreign trade transactions, payment statistics are not available.
Branches of French insurance companies provide life, fire, accident, and other forms of insurance. They include: CGRM-Compagnie Générale de Réassurance de Monte Carlo; Concorde; Mutuelle de Marseille Assurances Compagnie Générale de Réassurance; and the Shipowners' Mutual Strike Insurance Association (Bermuda)—all located in Monte Carlo.
The US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) estimates that in 1995 Monaco's central government took in revenues of approximately $518 million and had expenditures of $531 million including capital expenditures of $8.4 million. Overall, the government registered a deficit of approximately $13 million. External debt totaled $13 million.
By treaty, France and Monaco form a customs union that treats the Monaco coast as part of France. The French customs service collects the duties on cargoes discharged in Monaco and pays a share to the principality.
Monaco imposes a duty on all exports to places other than France; the levy applies whether the transfer of goods is actual or fictitious.
In the mid-1990s, there were approximately 12,000 principal residences in Monaco. In recent years, the government has stressed the construction of luxury housing. All new construction or alteration of existing buildings requires government approval.
Monaco has no territories or colonies.
Duursma, Jorri. Self-Determination, Statehood, and International Relations of Micro-States: The Cases of Liechtenstein, San Marino, Monaco, Andorra, and the Vatican City. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1996.