Costa Rica PEOPLE 2013


Costa Rica PEOPLE 2013

Page last updated on February 14, 2013

noun: Costa Rican(s)
adjective: Costa Rican

Ethnic groups:
white (including mestizo) 94%, black 3%, Amerindian 1%, Chinese 1%, other 1%

Spanish (official), English

Roman Catholic 76.3%, Evangelical 13.7%, Jehovah's Witnesses 1.3%, other Protestant 0.7%, other 4.8%, none 3.2%

Demographic profile:
Costa Rica's political stability, high standard of living, and well-developed social benefits system set it apart from its Central American neighbors. Through the government's sustained social spending - almost 20% of GDP annually - Costa Rica has made tremendous progress toward achieving its goal of providing universal access to education, healthcare, clean water, sanitation, and electricity. Since the 1970s, expansion of these services has led to a rapid decline in infant mortality, an increase in life expectancy at birth, and a sharp decrease in the birth rate. The average number of children born per women has fallen from about 7 in the 1960s to 3.5 in the early 1980s to below replacement level today. Costa Rica's poverty rate is lower than in most Latin American countries, but it has stalled at around 20% for almost two decades.

Costa Rica is a popular regional immigration destination because of its job opportunities and social programs. Almost 9% of the population is foreign-born, with Nicaraguans comprising nearly three-quarters of the foreign population. Many Nicaraguans who perform unskilled seasonal labor enter Costa Rica illegally or overstay their visas, which continues to be a source of tension. Less than 3% of Costa Rica's population lives abroad. The overwhelming majority of expatriates have settled in the United States after completing a university degree or in order to work in a highly skilled field.

4,636,348 (July 2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 121
[see also: Population country ranks ]

Age structure:
0-14 years: 24.2% (male 572,665/female 547,458)
[see also: Age structure 0-14 years country ranks ]
15-24 years: 18.2% (male 429,885/female 414,059)
25-54 years: 43.3% (male 1,008,794/female 1,001,053)
55-64 years: 7.7% (male 175,816/female 181,898)
65 years and over: 6.6% (male 141,075/female 163,645) (2012 est.)

Median age:
total: 29.2 years
[see also: Median age - total country ranks ]
male: 28.7 years
female: 29.6 years (2012 est.)

Population growth rate:
1.288% (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 91
[see also: Population growth rate country ranks ]

Birth rate:
16.4 births/1,000 population (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 123
[see also: Birth rate country ranks ]

Death rate:
4.38 deaths/1,000 population (July 2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 202
[see also: Death rate country ranks ]

Net migration rate:
0.86 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 57
[see also: Net migration rate country ranks ]

urban population: 64% of total population (2010)
[see also: Urbanization - urban population country ranks ]
rate of urbanization: 2.1% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)

Major cities - population:
SAN JOSE (capital) 1.416 million (2009)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
[see also: Sex ratio - at birth country ranks ]
under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.86 male(s)/female
total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2011 est.)

Maternal mortality rate:
40 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)
country comparison to the world: 115
[see also: Maternal mortality rate country ranks ]

Infant mortality rate:
total: 9.2 deaths/1,000 live births
country comparison to the world: 151
male: 10.03 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 8.32 deaths/1,000 live births (2012 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 77.89 years
country comparison to the world: 59
male: 75.26 years
female: 80.65 years (2012 est.)

Total fertility rate:
1.92 children born/woman (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 139
[see also: Total fertility rate country ranks ]

Health expenditures:
10.5% of GDP (2009)
country comparison to the world: 25
[see also: Health expenditures country ranks ]

Physicians density:
1.32 physicians/1,000 population (2000)
[see also: Physicians density country ranks ]

Hospital bed density:
1.2 beds/1,000 population (2008)
[see also: Hospital bed density country ranks ]

Sanitation facility access:

urban: 95% of population
rural: 96% of population
total: 95% of population
urban: 5% of population
rural: 4% of population
total: 5% of population

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
0.3% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 86
[see also: HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate country ranks ]

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
9,800 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 98
[see also: HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS country ranks ]

HIV/AIDS - deaths:
fewer than 500 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 83
[see also: HIV/AIDS - deaths country ranks ]

Major infectious diseases:
degree of risk: intermediate
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea
vectorborne diseases: dengue fever (2009)

Education expenditures:
6.3% of GDP (2009)
country comparison to the world: 24
[see also: Education expenditures - percent of GDP country ranks ]

definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 94.9%
male: 94.7%
female: 95.1% (2000 census)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 12 years
male: 12 years
female: 12 years (2005) youth ages 15-24:, youth ages 15-24:
total: 11%
country comparison to the world: 97
male: 9.6%
female: 13.4% (2008)

NOTE: 1) The information regarding Costa Rica on this page is re-published from the 2013 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Costa Rica PEOPLE 2013 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Costa Rica PEOPLE 2013 should be addressed to the CIA.
2) The rank that you see is the CIA reported rank, which may habe the following issues:
  a) They assign increasing rank number, alphabetically for countries with the same value of the ranked item, whereas we assign them the same rank.
  b) The CIA sometimes assignes counterintuitive ranks. For example, it assigns unemployment rates in increasing order, whereas we rank them in decreasing order

This page was last modified 11-Mar-13
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