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French Polynesia Country Guide

Explore French Polynesia in Oceania

French Polynesia with the capital city Papeete is located in Oceania (Oceania, archipelagoes in the South Pacific Ocean about half way between South America and Australia). It covers some 4,167 square kilometres (slightly less than one-third the size of Connecticut) with 270,485 citizens.

Interactive map of French Polynesia

The topography includes mixture of rugged high islands and low islands with reefs. The average density of population is approximately 65 per km². The notable climate conditions in French Polynesia can be described as tropical, but moderate. Possible natural disasters include occasional cyclonic storms in January.

To reach someone in French Polynesia dial +689 prior to a number. There are 54,300 installed telephones. And there are 208,300 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks commonly support frequencies of 900 MHz. Websites registered in this country end with the top level domain ".pf". If you want to bring electric equipment on your trip (e.g. laptop power supply), note the local power outlet of 220V - 50Hz.

About the flag and history of French Polynesia

French Polynesia Flag Icon

Two red horizontal bands encase a wide white band in a 1:2:1 ratio; centered on the white band is a disk with a blue and white wave pattern depicting the sea on the lower half and a gold and white ray pattern depicting the sun on the upper half; a Polynesian canoe rides on the wave pattern; the canoe has a crew of five represented by five stars that symbolize the five island groups; red and white are traditional Polynesian colors note: similar to the red-white-red flag of Tahiti, the largest of the islands in French Polynesia, which has no emblem in the white band; the flag of France is used for official occasions.

The French annexed various Polynesian island groups during the 19th century. In September 1995, France stirred up widespread protests by resuming nuclear testing on the Mururoa atoll after a three-year moratorium. The tests were halted in January 1996. In recent years, French Polynesia's autonomy has been considerably expanded.

Geography Quick-Facts

SummaryContinent: Oceania
Capital: Papeete
Size4,167 square kilometers (km² or sqkm) or 1,608 square miles (mi² or sqmi)
slightly less than one-third the size of Connecticut
CurrencyName Franc, Currency Code:XPF
Country Top Level Domain (cTLD).pf
Telephone Country Prefix+689
Mobile Phone Connections208,300
Landline Phone Connections54,300

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 nameValueWorld Rank
Area4,167 (sq km)175

People and Society

Value nameValueWorld Rank
Population277,293 181
Population growth rate1.00 (%)115
Birth rate15.70 (births/1,000 population)127
Death rate4.85 (deaths/1,000 population)191
Net migration rate-0.91 (migrant(s)/1,000 population)146
Infant mortality rate4.83 (deaths/1,000 live births)181
Life expectancy at birth76.59 (years)75
Total fertility rate1.97 (children born/woman)133
Unemployment, youth ages 15-2433.20 (%)18


Value nameValueWorld Rank
GDP (purchasing power parity)5,650,000,000 167
GDP - real growth rate-0.40 (%)189
GDP - per capita (PPP)22,000 68
Labor force116,000 181
Unemployment rate11.70 (%)124
Taxes and other revenues15.30 (% of GDP)190
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)3.90 (% of GDP)17
Inflation rate (consumer prices)1.10 (%)12
Exports200,000,000 185
Imports2,200,000,000 161


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Electricity - production725,000,000 (kWh)155
Electricity - consumption674,300,000 (kWh)161
Electricity - installed generating capacity140,000 (kW)161
Electricity - from fossil fuels66.40 (% of total installed capacity)118
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants33.60 (% of total installed capacity)65
Refined petroleum products - consumption8,000 (bbl/day)159
Refined petroleum products - imports7,246 (bbl/day)139
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy1,221,000 (Mt)163


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Telephones - main lines in use55,000 162
Telephones - mobile cellular222,800 177
Internet hosts37,949 103
Internet users120,000 153


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Airports53 86
Roadways2,590 (km)170
Merchant marine12 107

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

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