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French Polynesia (overseas territory of France) Geography

    Location: Oceania, archipelago in the South Pacific Ocean, about one-half of the way from South America to Australia

    Geographic coordinates: 15 00 S, 140 00 W

    Map references: Oceania

    Area:
    total: 4,167 sq km (118 islands and atolls)
    land: 3,660 sq km
    water: 507 sq km

    Area—comparative: slightly less than one-third the size of Connecticut

    Land boundaries: 0 km

    Coastline: 2,525 km

    Maritime claims:
    exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
    territorial sea: 12 nm

    Climate: tropical, but moderate

    Terrain: mixture of rugged high islands and low islands with reefs

    Elevation extremes:
    lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
    highest point: Mont Orohena 2,241 m

    Natural resources: timber, fish, cobalt

    Land use:
    arable land: 1%
    permanent crops: 6%
    permanent pastures: 5%
    forests and woodland: 31%
    other: 57% (1993 est.)

    Irrigated land: NA sq km

    Natural hazards: occasional cyclonic storms in January

    Environment—current issues: NA

    Environment—international agreements:
    party to: NA
    signed, but not ratified: NA

    Geography—note: includes five archipelagoes; Makatea in French Polynesia is one of the three great phosphate rock islands in the Pacific Ocean—the others are Banaba (Ocean Island) in Kiribati and Nauru

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Revised 1-Mar-99
Copyright © 1999 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)