Costa Rica is a Central American success story: since the late 19th century, only two brief periods of violence have marred its democratic development. Although still a largely agricultural country, it has expanded its economy to include strong technology and tourism sectors. The standard of living is relatively high. Land ownership is widespread.

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Surface Area: 51,100 square km
Population: 3,956,507 (July 2004 est.)
Located in: Central America
Capital City: San Jose
Head of State: Abel PACHECO
Prime Minister: Abel PACHECO
Independent since: 15 September 1821 (from Spain)
Currency: Costa Rican colon (CRC)
Flag (image):