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Spain

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Kingdom of Spain[1]
Flag of Spain.svg     Escudo oficial de España.png
Motto "Plus Ultra"
National anthem La Marcha Real / Marcha Granadera
Capital Madrid
Official language Spanish
Government type Constitutional monarchy
King Philip/Felipe VI (before: Juan Carlos I)
Prime Minister José Luís Rodríguez Zapatero (before: José María Aznar)
Area 505,370[2] km²
Population 40,548,753[2]
(July 2010 estimate)
Population density 80.2/km²
HDI 0.938[3] (high) (19th) (2006)
Currency Euro (EUR)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
Summer:CEST (UTC+2)
Country codes Internet TLD : es
Calling code : +34

Spain (Spanish: España) is a Western European country, officially known as the Kingdom of Spain (Spanish: Reino de España). It also comprises various overseas islands and small territories located on Africa. It is a member of the European Union, the United Nations and NATO.

Contents

Geography

Spain occupies most of the Iberian Peninsula of Europe, bordered by the Mediterranean Sea, the Atlantic Ocean and its arm the Bay of Biscay, and the Pyrennes Mountains. Spain also has some overseas territories outside the Iberian peninsula. Sharing the Iberian Peninsula are Portugal in the south and central west, Andorra, occupying a small are in the Pyrennes Mountains, and Gibraltar, a dependency of the United Kingdom occupying a small peninsula in the center of the southern coast of the peninsula. Spain also shares land borders with France along the Pyrennes mountains, and Morocco, at Ceuta and Melilla.

Physical Geography

The Iberian peninsula is among the hottest and driest parts of Europe, though the climate varies widely across the peninsula. The northernmost part of Spain is wetter.

Politics

The Kingdom of Spain is a constitutional monarchy. The king of Spain is the Head of State and Supreme Commander in Chief of the armed forces. His legal and constitutional role is similar to that of the Queen of the United Kingdom. Spain has a bicameral parliament (Cortes Generales in spanish) which is divided into the Congress and the Senate. The Congress or 'Camara Baja' has 349 [4] Diputados 'deputies', elected every 4 years, while the senate or 'Camara Alta' has 259 senators[5], elected for a 4-year term.

Economy

Spain has a highly-developed industrial economy, between the eighth and ninth largest economies in the world. Spanish most powerful sectors are: turism, construction and manufacturing.

International relations

Spain is a member of the European Union (since 1986), a member of the United Nations, as well as a member of NATO and the Western European Union.

References

  1. The Government of Spain
  2. 2.0 2.1 Spain (CIA World Factbook)
  3. HDR06, UN, Human Development Report 2006 (United Nations)
  4. Congreso de los Diputados
  5. El Senado de España
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