Colombia has beautiful, tropical rainforests. Projected defense spending for 2006 was $4.48 billion. That’s more than the monthly salary of all the CEO’s of all the top Fortune 500 companies put together. Colombia's most famous author is Gabriel García Márquez, whose body of work through the 1970s earned him a Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982. The FARC ended the truce in 1990 after some 2,000-3,000 of its members who had demobilized had been murdered. We've got you covered with our map collection. Colombia is comprised of many regional cultures.Many of the indigenous groups of Colombia have embraced the Spanish cultural influences. Colombia has been inhabited by various indigenous peoples since at least 12,000 BCE, including the Muisca, Quimbaya, and the Tairona. Emerald production fell from 116.3 million carats in 2005 to 112.7 million carats in 2006. His novel 100 Years of Solitude is widely read around the world. Although much attention has been focused on the security aspects of Colombia's situation, the Uribe government also is making significant efforts on issues such as expanding international trade, supporting alternate means of development, and reforming Colombia's judicial system. In the 1980s, Colombia broadened its bilateral and multilateral relations, joining the Contadora Group, the Group of Eight (now the Rio Group) and the Non-Aligned Movement, which it chaired from 1994 until September 1998. Spain discovered a mountain, Cerro Rico, filled with silver….precious silver. The only activities closed to foreign direct investment are defense and national security, and disposal of hazardous wastes. Colombia is drenched in Spanish influence. Colombian governments have had to contend with the combined terrorist activities of left-wing guerrillas, the rise of paramilitary self-defense forces in the 1990s and the drug cartels. Although they are less widely known than, say, the Inca or the Nazca, we know a fair deal about the indigenous peoples of Colombia. )Population Below the Poverty Line: 27.8% (2017 est.). In congressional elections in March 2006, the three leading pro-Uribe parties (National Unity, Conservative Party, and Radical Change) won clear majorities in both houses of Congress. Many People sell phone minutes on the street ( you can make a phone call from someone else´s phone for a … The music is also thumping and pumping in Colombia. Elected president in 1990, César Gaviria Trujillo proposed lenient punishment in exchange for surrender by the leading drug dealers. Signing a free trade agreement in November 2006 portends further opportunity for growth once it is approved by the legislatures of both countries and implemented. Though a former colony of Spain, Colombian culture, architecture, food habits, language, and its constitution are all more or less influenced by Spain. Bolivar's supporters, who later formed the nucleus of the Conservative Party, sought strong centralized government, alliance with the Roman Catholic Church and a limited franchise. This name was accepted in 1819 by the Republic of Columbia that was created from the Old Victorian territories of Grand Dada (in the modern age Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela, Northwest Brazil, and Panama). The constitution also authorized the introduction of an accusatory system of criminal justice that is gradually being instituted throughout the country, replacing the previous written inquisitorial system. Moral of the story: Always book your return flight…eh..ship. In 1861, President Tomas Cyprian de Mosquera ordered that the pavilion of the future United States of Colombia (1863-1886) carry nine stars representing each state, which were yellow, blue and red in horizontal stripes, “occupying the Yello… 1. In the 1970s and 1980s, Colombia became one of the international centers for illegal drug production and trafficking, and at times the drug cartels (the Medellin and Cali cartels were the most notorious) virtually controlled the country. Fact 6: Colombia is the only country in South America that has access to both the Pacific and Caribbean ocean. Colombia is a huge country of around 50 million people, so it can be hard to generalize. Economic growth and a reduction in paramilitary violence were believed to be responsible for his landslide reelection. In an attempt to help cool the diplomatic tension between the three countries, the Organization of American States approved a resolution, which declared that the Colombian raid into Ecuador was a violation of sovereignty. Mining and Energy Colombia has considerable mineral and energy resources, especially coal and natural gas reserves. Colombia Ancient History. Colombia is the third largest exporter of coffee in the world after Brazil and Vietnam. Places North America Natural features. 3. The freed prisoners, three men and one woman, included Luis Eladio Perez, Orlando Beltran, Jorge Gechem, and Gloria Polanco de Losada. Unknown was whether FARC, also known as Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, would release the kidnapped civilians they currently hold or whether the orders can be enforced among all the rebels in the group. The FARC negotiated with the government only fitfully while continuing to mount attacks and expand coca production, seriously undermining the government's efforts to reach an agreement. All Rights Reserved. The army suppressed an M-19 attack on the Palace of Justice in Bogota in November 1985, during which 115 people were killed, including 11 Supreme Court justices. 1. History; Population; Colombia. Unlike many of its neighboring countries, Colombia has not suffered any dramatic economic collapses. Colombia History Facts . Colombia is a free market economy with major commercial and investment ties to the United States. Here are the facts and trivia that people are buzzing about. In March 2006, Bogota hosted the Sixth Regular Session of the Inter-American Committee against Terrorism. 1829-30 - Gran Colombia dissolved when Venezuela and Ecuador split off, leaving present-day Colombia and Panama a separate state known as … Other significant constitutional reforms provide for civil divorce, dual nationality and the establishment of a legal mechanism ("tutela") that allows individuals to appeal government decisions affecting their constitutional rights. Other periods of Liberal dominance (1849–1857 and 1861–1880), which sought to disestablish the Roman Catholic Church, were marked by insurrection. Its original name was Bacatá: The current land of Bogotá was first inhabited by the Muiscas, one of the multiple aboriginal groups that have lived in Colombia since the Precolumbian era until now. On May 28, 2006, President Uribe was reelected with 62% of the vote. Colombia maintained a tradition of civilian government and regular, free, elections. It is located on the Northwest coast of South America, bordered by Panama, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador, and Peru. The name Colombia is derived from the name Christopher Columbus. Updated April 07, 2019 Santa Fe de Bogotá is the capital of Colombia. In Dec. 1999, the Colombian military announced that 2,787 people were kidnapped that year—the largest number in the world—and blamed rebels. However, the company’s first store was inaugurated in Colombia in the capital city of Bogotá in 2014. Travel Warnings are issued when the State Department recommends that Americans avoid travel to a certain country because the situation is dangerous or unstable. Ethnicity. There are many Colombia facts a lot more interesting than Pablo Escobar or the FARC. Colombians can enjoy 18 public holidays each year. Spain, which looted them in the first place, has demanded the money back in an international dispute. 39. The Colombia Reader: History, Culture, Politics (The Latin America Readers) Ann Farnsworth-Alvear. 03 February 2017 Features, Colombia Forget about everything you thought you knew about Colombia. 2. )Growth Rate: 1.7% (2017 est. FARC withdrew into the jungle and increased attacks against Colombia's infrastructure, while avoiding large-scale direct conflicts with the military. Colombia’s Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, at 13,000 m, is the world’s highest coastal mountain range. Colombian Baroque art mostly borrows from Spanish Baroque art, and so on. In December 2003, the Colombian Self-Defense Forces (AUC) paramilitary group entered into a peace agreement with the government that has led to the collective demobilization of over 31,000 AUC members. The theme of most children’s games, El Dorado, is actually a mythical city in ancient Colombia. Transition from a highly regulated economy has been underway for more than 15 years. Incidentally, it’s on the run, and has moved more than a thousand miles in the last 170 million years. Here are 10 facts about Colombian refugees. 3. 25 Interesting Facts about Colombia 1. In May 2004, the UN announced that Colombia's 39-year-long drug war had created the worst humanitarian crisis in the Western Hemisphere. 46. She danced her way into the world of fame and has won many awards and recognized globally as a successful artist. Colombia's visual arts scene has been garnering attention in the past few decades. Colombian authors produced works of prose and poetry through the colonial era onward. Coffee is not native to Colombia. Colombia is a country located in the very north of South America. Initially, people who went to find the treasures of El Dorado never returned. Combination of state-owned and privately owned broadcast media provide service; more than 500 radio stations and many national, regional, and local TV stations (2007). Mining and energy related investments have grown because of higher oil prices, increased demand and improved output. The National Passport Information Center (NPIC) is the U.S. Department of State's single, centralized public contact center for U.S. passport information. Colombia is the only country in South America to have coastlines on the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean. Cacao, sugarcane, coconuts, bananas, plantains, rice, cotton, tobacco, cassava and most of the nation's beef cattle are produced in the hot regions from sea level to 1,000 meters elevation. 44. A cityscape of gorgeous Medellín, Colombia. There are two major organizations in Colombia these days. Ferronickel production decreased from 116 million pounds in 2005 to 112.7 million pounds in 2006. 26. The FARC is believed responsible for more than half of the cocaine entering the United States. Using free local labor plus hardworking llamas, they mined down the mountain, rock by rock. Two political parties dominated the region: the Conservatives believed in a strong central government and a powerful church; the Liberals believed in a decentralized government, strong regional power, and a less influential role for the church. These groups also experienced large-scale depopulation due to disease, as happened elsewhere. Here’s something about drugs: 15 tons of raw pure cocaine — that’s how much white powder just one man shipped into the U.S. alone each day, at one point in time. It is a sovereign state largely situated in the northwest of South America, with territories in Central America. The announcement was made on FARC's website. Colombia is known for its significant natural resources, modern cities, and a diverse culture. The red and yellow colors of the Colombian flag were adapted from the Spanish flag and the stripe of blue symbolizes the ocean that separates the country of Colombia from Spain. Although the two other major armed groups, left-wing FARC and ELN, continue to finance themselves through kidnapping and drug trafficking, governmental efforts have been successful in significantly reducing the kidnapping rate. Colombia provides 75% of the world's illegal cocaine. The Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) provides security information and regional news that impact U.S. companies working abroad through its website Here’s our roundup of the most interesting Colombia facts: 1. Almost 60% of the Amazon rainforest lies in Brazil, 13% lies in Peru, and 10% lies in Colombia. Since 2000, the FARC has not carried out large scale multi-front attacks, although it has mounted some operations that indicate it has not yet been broken. Santos was largely responsible for planning and carrying out the government's successful assault on FARC. He came in behind his main opponent, the Democratic Center Party's Óscar Iván Zuluaga in the first round when Zuluaga received 29.25% of the vote and Santos received 25.69%. Different studies and research have found out that humans settled... 2. )Cell Phones: 58,684,924, 123 per 100 residents, (2016 est. 7. Colombia shares borders with five neighboring countries. In November 1998, Pastrana ceded a sparsely populated area the size of Switzerland in south-central Colombia to the FARC's control to serve as a neutral zone where peace negotiations could take place. Negotiations with the rebels in 2000 and 2001 were marred by rebel attacks, kidnappings and fighting between rebels and paramilitaries for control of coca-growing areas in Colombia. Mind your pronunciation because Colombians have a very fine ear for details. The United States is Colombia's largest trading partner, representing about 40% of Colombia's exports and 26.6% of its imports. This is because Colombia... 3. A Venezuelan by the name of Francisco Miranda designed the national flag in 1806. The violence has created more than 100,000 refugees, while 2 million Colombians have fled the country in recent years. Indigenous tribes inhabited Colombia in 12,500 B.C. The city was founded by the Muisca people long before the arrival of the Spanish, who established their own city there. 58. Panama declared its independence in 1903. Santa Marta was the first permanent Spanish settlement founded in 1525. 1586-12-03 Sir Thomas Herriot introduces potatoes to England from Colombia In 1984, President Belisario Betancur, a Conservative, negotiated a cease-fire with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the Democratic Alliance/M-19 (M-19) that included the release of many imprisoned guerrillas. provides a portal to all export-related assistance and market information offered by the federal government and provides trade leads, free export counseling, help with the export process, and more. There is so much to this country. Turnout was 47.9%. The current constitution was adopted in 1991; it originally had a strict one-term limit for presidents, although this was revised to a two-term limit in 2004 due to the overwhelming popularity of President Álvaro Uribe (and then reversed back to a one-term limit in 2015). What is now Colombia and Learn some interesting information about Colombia while enjoying a range of fun facts and trivia that's perfect for kids! In 1538 they established the colony of New Granada, the area's name until 1861. Colombia’s history dates back to hundreds of years. The name "Colombia" is derived from the last name of the explorer Christopher Columbus. The United States responded to the Colombian Government's request for international support for Plan Colombia by providing substantial assistance designed to increase Colombia's counter-narcotics capabilities and support human rights, humanitarian assistance, alternative development and economic and judicial reforms. 28. Let's speak about all the fun facts you should know to get a better understanding of the county. Colombia loves anything and everything that has something to do with Futbol (soccer). In 1997, the United States and Colombia signed an important maritime ship-boarding agreement to allow for search of suspected drug-running vessels. 1538-08-06 Bogotá, Colombia, is founded by Gonzalo Jiménez de Quesada 1539-04-27 Re-founding of the city of Bogotá, New Granada (nowadays Colombia), by Nikolaus Federmann and Sebastián de Belalcázar. Colombia's industries include textiles and clothing, leather products, processed foods and beverages, paper and paper products, chemicals and petrochemicals, cement, construction, iron and steel products and metalworking. 23. Colombia is an impressively huge country that outstands by its natural beauty. The Department of State encourages all U.S citizens traveling or residing abroad to register via the State Department's travel registration website or at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate abroad. In late February 2012, FARC announced an end to its long time practice of kidnapping civilians for financial gains. Colombia historically has been the world's leading producer of emeralds, although production has fallen in recent years. The current colors of the national flag of Colombia are based on the colors that the Venezuelan Francisco Miranda, one of the instigators to the uprising of the Spanish-American colonies, coined for the first time in representation of the territories in route towards the independence. Elders are deeply respected and revered in this tropical nation. The government of Colombia found a $2 billion Spanish shipwreck under the sea near its coast. Without Futbol, its iconic yellow jerseys, its heartthrob, James Rodriguez, or without its unique goal dance, Colombian people couldn’t get a peaceful night’s sleep. 4.5 out of 5 stars 15. Department of State2201 C Street, NWWashington, DC 20520Main Switchboard: 202-647-4000 (, U.S. Department of Commerce, Trade Information Center, International Trade Administration1401 Constitution AvenueWashington, DC 20230(tel: 800-USA-TRADE, Internet:, Colombian-American Chamber of CommerceCalle 98, @2264, Oficina 1209Apartado Aereo 8008Bogota, Colombia(tel: (571) 621-5042/7925/6838, fax: (571) 612-6838, Internet: in Cali, Cartagena, Medellin. A controversy surrounding suspected ties between members of Uribe's government and paramilitary leaders dogged Uribe in late 2006 and into 2007. Bolívar united Colombia, Venezuela, Panama, and Ecuador in the Republic of Greater Colombia (1819–1830), but he lost Venezuela and Ecuador to separatists. What might prove the biggest change to the current balance is the reformation of militant rebel group FARC (Fuerza Armada Revolucionaria de Colombia, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) into the communist political party FARC (Fuerza Alternativa Revolucionaria del Común, the People's Alternative Revolutionary Force). The temperate regions--between 1,000 and 2,000 meters--are better suited for coffee, flowers, corn and other vegetables, pears, pineapples, and tomatoes. The country is now one of the safest in South America, imposes short-term laws to avoid violence and has eradicated it’s drug-fuelled past to create an absolutely beautiful place to live, visit and teach in. In late 2006, the Supreme Court began investigations and ordered the arrest of some members of Congress for actions on behalf of paramilitary groups. Full independence was proclaimed in 1813, and in 1819 the Republic of Greater Colombia was formed to include all the territory of the former Viceroyalty (Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador and Panama). Signed back on November 22, 2006, the agreement was made to eliminate tariffs and other trade barriers for goods and services between Colombia and the United States. Official name: Republic of Colombia (República de Colombia), Land area: 401,042 sq mi (1,038,699 sq km), Total area: 439,736 sq mi (1,138,910 sq km), Other large cities: Medellin 3.934 million; Cali 2.726 million; Barranquilla 2.218 million; Bucaramanga 1.295 million; Cartagena 1.047 million; Cucuta 913,000 (2018), National Holiday: Independence Day (7/20), Population Change: Growth rate: 0.99%; 16.1 births/1,000 population, 5.5 deaths/1,000 population, -0.6 migrant(s)/1,000 population; infant mortality rate: 13.6 deaths/1,000 live births (2017 est. In 1508, Vasco Nuñez de Balboa reached Colombia alongside Martín Fernández de Enciso. The different cultures that occupied Colombia shared much in common in terms of diet and material culture. But it was Alonso de Ojeda the first to do an exploration in the area of Gulf of Darién. After that the Spaniards founded the first European citi… (Venezuela joined in 1973 and announced its departure in 2005; Chile left in 1976 and returned in 2006.) 24. Panama separated from Colombia, partly due to the United States involvement in building the Panama Canal. The ring is 40,000km long, and there are more than 450 volcanoes. Santa Fe de Bogota was founded in 1538 and, in 1717, became the capital of the Viceroyalty of New Granada, which included what are now Venezuela, Ecuador, and Panama. The government not only tolerates graffiti but also encourages and sponsors street art. Other Contact InformationU.S. Colombia has proven recoverable coal reserves of about 7.4 billion short tons, the majority of which are located in the north of the country. Each of the main areas or cities in Colombia is completely different. 1718 - Bogota becomes the capital of the Spanish vice-royalty of Nueva Granada, which also rules Ecuador and Venezuela.. 1819 - Simon Bolivar defeats Spanish at Boyaca. On May 15, 2012, the United States-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement (CTPA) went into effect. The older you grow, the more powerful your voice becomes. The dialogue is expected to continue. Colombia has also become a major cultural exporter, now coming in second behind Mexico for most cultural exports in Latin America. mi.). Colombia strongly reflects its history as a colony of Spain.It is often referred to as the most Roman Catholic of the South American countries, and most of its people are proud of the relative purity of their Spanish language.Its population is heavily mestizo (of mixed European and Indian descent) with substantial minorities of European and African ancestry. A constitutional amendment approved in 2005 allows the president to hold office for two consecutive 4-year terms. Bogotá is the home of the nation’s tire, chemical, and pharmaceutical industries, but its chief activities are commercial. GDP/PPP: $712.5 billion (2017 est. Recognizing that terrorism and the illicit narcotics trade in Colombia are inextricably linked, the U.S. Congress granted new expanded statutory authorities in 2002 making U.S. assistance to Colombia more flexible in order to better support President Uribe's unified campaign against narcotics and terrorism. Also in November, Uribe withdrew his support of Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez’s attempts to negotiate with the FARC, escalating tension between the two countries. In order to encourage investment in Colombia, Congress approved a law in 2005 to protect FDI. Different studies and research have found out that humans settled in modern Colombia more than 20,000 years ago, a fun fact about Colombia. Colombia Facts for Kids. The King of Coke, Pablo Escobar, was born and bred in Colombia. Telephone: 1-877-4USA-PPT (1-877-487-2778). The agreement granted duty-free treatment to farm products and a variety of foods. CTRL + SPACE for auto-complete. 41. People living in Colombia are called Colombian. The following year, Colombia lost its claims to Panama because it refused to ratify the lease to the United States of the Canal Zone. Bolívar was himself a Conservative, while his vice president, Francisco de Paula Santander, was the founder of the Liberal Party. Colombia has improved protection of intellectual property rights through the adoption of three Andean Pact decisions in 1993 and 1994 as well as an internal decree on data protection. In addition, all regions yield forest products, ranging from tropical hardwoods in the lowlands, to pine and eucalyptus in the colder areas. The support was enough to propel Santos to a victory with 53.1% over Zuluaga's 46.9%. Not sure about the geography of the middle east? 29. An upsurge in violence accompanied his inauguration, and Uribe declared a state of emergency within a week. He promised to maintain the policies of former president Uribe, including the campaign against FARC guerrillas and forging a close relationship with the United States. 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