Backgrounder: Basic facts about Costa Rica

Updated: 2013-06-03 15:29


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BEIJING - Chinese President Xi Jinping arrived in Costa Rica Sunday for a state visit to promote cooperation between China and the Central American country.

The following are some basic facts about the country:

Costa Rica, with a land territory of 51,100 square km, is bordered by Nicaragua to the north, Panama to the southeast, the Pacific Ocean to the west, and the Caribbean Sea to the east.

Latest official census put its population at 4.58 million, with 95 percent of them being Catholic.

Its official language is Spanish and its capital city is San Jose.

Costa Rica is among the most advanced economies in Central America. Tourism, external trade and the service sector are pillars of its economy.

In recent years the country has been actively reforming its finance and tax systems, further opening up telecommunication and insurance sectors, promoting hi-tech industries, attracting foreign investment and boosting exports.

Since the establishment of China-Costa Rica diplomatic ties in June 2007, the two countries have witnessed rapid development in their relations, with political mutual trust enhanced and fruitful results achieved in cooperation covering trade, investment, culture, and education, among others.

China is currently Costa Rica's second largest trade partner and Costa Rica is China's ninth largest trade partner in Latin America. The Central American country is also the third in Latin America that has signed an FTA with China.

According to statistics by China's Customs, last year the China-Costa Rica trade grew 30.5 percent year-on-year to reach $6.172 billion.



President Xi visits Latin America, meets Obama

May 31 to June 6: Xi will pay state visits to Trinidad and Tobago, Costa Rica and Mexico.

June 7 to 8: Xi will meet US President Barack Obama on June 7 and 8 at the Annenberg Estate in Rancho Mirage, California.


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