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Country information - Peru
Country name - conventional long form : Republic of Peru
Country name - conventional short form : Peru
Country name - local long form : Republica del Peru
Country name - local short form : Peru
Government type : constitutional republic
Capital - name : Lima
Capital - time difference : UTC-5 (same time as Washington, DC during Standard Time)
National holiday : Independence Day, 28 July (1821)
Population : 29,180,900 (July 2008 est.)
Nationality - noun : Peruvian(s)
Nationality - adjective : Peruvian
Languages : Spanish (official), Quechua (official), Aymara, and a large number of minor Amazonian languages
Currency (code) : nuevo sol (PEN)
Currency code : PEN
Major infectious diseases - degree of risk : very high

Peru is located Western South America, bordering the South Pacific Ocean, between Chile and Ecuador. The climate is varies from tropical in east to dry desert in west; temperate to frigid in Andes. The terrain is western coastal plain (costa), high and rugged Andes in center (sierra), eastern lowland jungle of Amazon Basin (selva).


This entry usually highlights major historic events and current issues and may include a statement about one or two key future trends.
Background : Ancient Peru was the seat of several prominent Andean civilizations, most notably that of the Incas whose empire was captured by the Spanish conquistadors in 1533. Peruvian independence was declared in 1821, and remaining Spanish forces defeated in 1824. After a dozen years of military rule, Peru returned to democratic leadership in 1980, but experienced economic problems and the growth of a violent insurgency. President Alberto FUJIMORI's election in 1990 ushered in a decade that saw a dramatic turnaround in the economy and significant progress in curtailing guerrilla activity. Nevertheless, the president's increasing reliance on authoritarian measures and an economic slump in the late 1990s generated mounting dissatisfaction with his regime, which led to his ouster in 2000. A caretaker government oversaw new elections in the spring of 2001, which ushered in Alejandro TOLEDO as the new head of government - Peru's first democratically elected president of Native American ethnicity. The presidential election of 2006 saw the return of Alan GARCIA who, after a disappointing presidential term from 1985 to 1990, returned to the presidency with promises to improve social conditions and maintain fiscal responsibility.

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