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Haiti Country Guide

Explore Haiti in North America

Travel warning information is updated daily: The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade's advisory service suggests to reconsider your need to travel to this country. Take this advice seriously - check with your local authorities whether your exact destination is safe.

Haiti with the capital city Port-au-Prince is located in North America (Caribbean, western one-third of the island of Hispaniola). It covers some 27,751 square kilometres (slightly smaller than Maryland) with 8,924,000 citizens.

Interactive map of Haiti

The landscape offers mostly rough and mountainous. The average density of population is approximately 322 per km². The notable climate conditions in Haiti can be described as tropical with semiarid where mountains in east cut off trade winds. Potential threats by nature are lies in the middle of the hurricane belt and subject to severe storms from June to October or occasional flooding and earthquakes or periodic droughts.

To reach someone in Haiti dial +509 prior to a number. There are 108,300 installed telephones. And there are 3,648,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks commonly support frequencies of none Mhz. Websites registered in this country end with the top level domain ".ht". If you want to bring electric equipment on your trip (e.g. laptop power supply), note the local power outlet of 110V - 60Hz.

About the flag and history of Haiti

Two equal horizontal bands of blue (top) and red with a centered white rectangle bearing the coat of arms, which contains a palm tree flanked by flags and two cannons above a scroll bearing the motto L'UNION FAIT LA FORCE (Union Makes Strength); the colors are taken from the French Tricolor and represent the union of blacks and mulattoes.

The native Taino - who inhabited the island of Hispaniola when it was discovered by Christopher COLUMBUS in 1492 - were virtually annihilated by Spanish settlers within 25 years. In the early 17th century, the French established a presence on Hispaniola. In 1697, Spain ceded to the French the western third of the island, which later became Haiti. The French colony, based on forestry and sugar-related industries, became one of the wealthiest in the Caribbean but only through the heavy importation of African slaves and considerable environmental degradation. In the late 18th century, Haiti's nearly half million slaves revolted under Toussaint L''OUVERTURE. After a prolonged struggle, Haiti became the first post-colonial black-led nation in the world, declaring its independence in 1804. Currently the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, Haiti has experienced political instability for most of its history. After an armed rebellion led to the forced resignation and exile of President Jean-Bertrand ARISTIDE in February 2004, an interim government took office to organize new elections under the auspices of the United Nations. Continued instability and technical delays prompted repeated postponements, but Haiti inaugurated a democratically elected president and parliament in May of 2006. This was followed by contested elections in 2010 that resulted in the election of Haiti''s current President, Michel MARTELLY. A massive magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck Haiti in January 2010 with an epicenter about 25 km (15 mi) west of the capital, Port-au-Prince. Estimates are that over 300,000 people were killed and some 1.5 million left homeless. The earthquake was assessed as the worst in this region over the last 200 years.

Geography Quick-Facts

Summary Continent: North America
Neighbours: Dominican Republic
Capital: Port-au-Prince
Size 27,750 square kilometers (km² or sqkm) or 10,714 square miles (mi² or sqmi)
slightly smaller than Maryland
Population 8,924,000
Currency Name: Gourde, Currency Code: HTG
Country Top Level Domain (cTLD) .ht
Telephone Country Prefix +509
Mobile Phone Connections 3,648,000
Landline Phone Connections 108,300

Country Position in World Rankings

Information about single country attributes and how these compare against the rest of the world. The information below is compiled with data from 2013. As such, it may differ a bit to the Information above in the text (which is from 2010).


Value name Value World Rank
Area 27,750 (sq km) 148

People and Society

Value name Value World Rank
Population 9,893,934 88
Population growth rate 0.99 (%) 117
Birth rate 23.35 (births/1,000 population) 71
Death rate 8.00 (deaths/1,000 population) 99
Net migration rate -5.50 (migrant(s)/1,000 population) 194
Maternal mortality rate 350.00 (deaths/100,000 live births) 33
Infant mortality rate 50.92 (deaths/1,000 live births) 41
Life expectancy at birth 62.85 (years) 186
Total fertility rate 2.88 (children born/woman) 66
Health expenditures 6.90 (% of GDP) 83
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate 1.90 (%) 31
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS 120,000 37
HIV/AIDS - deaths 7,100 30
Obesity - adult prevalence rate 7.90 (%) 137
Children under the age of 5 years underweight 18.90 (%) 38


Value name Value World Rank
GDP (purchasing power parity) 13,150,000,000 146
GDP - real growth rate 2.80 (%) 115
GDP - per capita (PPP) 1,300 208
Labor force 4,810,000 80
Unemployment rate 40.60 (%) 189
Distribution of family income - Gini index 59 7
Investment (gross fixed) 37.00 (% of GDP) 8
Taxes and other revenues 12.7 (% of GDP) 202
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-) -1.40 (% of GDP) 69
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 6.70 (%) 174
Commercial bank prime lending rate 11.61 (%) 70
Stock of narrow money 1,090,000,000 147
Stock of broad money 3,509,000,000 139
Stock of domestic credit 2,040,000,000 137
Industrial production growth rate 7.00 (%) 37
Current account balance -1,509,000,000 128
Exports 785,000,000 165
Imports 2,640,000,000 154
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold 1,307,000,000 128
Debt - external 1,125,000,000 155
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home 753,300,000 95


Value name Value World Rank
Electricity - production 726,000,000 (kWh) 154
Electricity - consumption 208,500,000 (kWh) 184
Electricity - installed generating capacity 130000 (kW) 167
Electricity - from fossil fuels 79.0 (% of total installed capacity) 94
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants 21.0 (% of total installed capacity) 89
Refined petroleum products - consumption 14,000 (bbl/day) 148
Refined petroleum products - imports 15,130 (bbl/day) 120
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy 1,457,000 (Mt) 155


Value name Value World Rank
Telephones - main lines in use 50,000 164
Telephones - mobile cellular 4,200,000 115
Internet hosts 555 181
Internet users 1,000,000 99


Value name Value World Rank
Airports 14 149
Roadways 4,266 (km) 155


Value name Value World Rank
Military expenditures 0.40 (% of GDP) 164

Data based on CIA facts book 2010 & 2013, wikipedia, national statistical offices and their census releases

List of current world heritage sites

Name Since
National History Park – Citadel, Sans Souci, Ramiers
These Haitian monuments date from the beginning of the 19th century, when Haiti proclaimed its independence. The Palace of Sans Souci, the buildings at Ramiers and, in particular, the Citadel serve as universal symbols of liberty, being the first mon ...