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Location: South Caucasus; bordered by Russia to the north, the Caspian Sea to the east, Iran to the south, and Georgia and Armenia to the west.
Area: 33,774 sq. mi. (includes Nakhchivan and Nagorno-Karabakh); slightly smaller than Maine.
Cities: Capital--Baku.
Terrain: Caucasus Mountains to the north, lowland in the central area through which the Kura River flows.
Climate: Dry, subtropical with hot summers and mild winters; forests, meadows, and alpine tundra in the mountains.

People (2000)
Nationality: Noun--Azerbaijani(s), Azeri. Adjective--Azerbaijani, Azeri.
Population (Dec. 2000 est.): 8,082,000.
Population growth rate: 0.27%.
Net migration rate: -5.92/1,000.
Ethnic groups (1998 est.): Azeri 90%, Dagestani Peoples 3.2%, Russian 2.5%, Armenians 2%, and other 2.3%.
Religion: Muslim 93.4% (majority Shi'a), Russian Orthodox 2.5%, Armenian Orthodox Church 2.3%, and other 1.8%.
Languages: Azerbaijani 89%, Russian 3%, Armenian 2%, and other 6%.
Education: Literacy--97%.
Health: Infant mortality rate--83.41/1,000 live births (2000 est.). Life expectancy--62.87 years.
Work force (3 million): Agriculture and forestry--42.3%; industry--6.9%; construction--4.2%; other--46.6%.

Type: Republic.
Constitution: Approved in November 1995 referendum.
Independence: August 30, 1991 (from Soviet Union).
Branches: Executive--president (chief of state), prime minister (head of government), Council of Ministers (cabinet). Legislative--unicameral National Assembly (parliament). Judicial--Supreme Court.
Administrative subdivisions: 78 rayons, 11 cities, and 1 autonomous republic.
Political parties: New Azerbaijan Party, Popular Front Party, Musavat Party, National Independence Party, Civic Solidarity Party, Social Democratic Party, Communist Party, Liberal Party, Azerbaijan Democratic Independence Party, Islamic Party, plus 50 minor parties.
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal.

Economy (2002)
GDP: $6.1 billion (Azerbaijan Government-reported).
GDP real growth rate: 9.8%.
Per capita GDP: $753 (Azerbaijan Government-reported).
Inflation rate: 2.5%.
Unemployment rate (est.): 15%-20%.
Natural resources: Petroleum, natural gas, iron ore, nonferrous metals, alumina.
Agriculture: Products--cotton, tobacco, grain, rice, grapes, fruit, vegetables, tea, cattle, pigs, sheep, goats.
Industry: Types--petroleum and natural gas, petroleum products, oilfield equipment, steel, iron ore, cement, chemicals, petrochemicals.
Trade: Exports--$2.17 billion: oil and gas, chemicals, oilfield equipment, textiles, cotton. Imports--$1.67 billion: machinery and parts, consumer durables, foodstuffs, textiles. Major trade partners--Italy, Russia, Turkey, Israel, U.S., Iran, other EU, and other countries formerly part of the Soviet Union.

Adapted from material published in the CIA World Factbook.
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