The Principality of Andorra is a small country that could be attributed to the group of European diminutive states together with Liechtenstein, Monaco and San-Marino. Alongside with that, Andorra is the biggest out of this group. The area of Andorra makes up 468 km2.
Andorra is located in the south-west of Eurasian continent, between Spain and France, in the eastern part of the Pyrenees. The country hasn’t got access to sea; it is mostly located on the mountainous terrain at the height of 900 meters above the sea level.
North (crags of Font Blanca) – 42º 39’ 15’’
South (Conangle – River Runer) – 42º 25’ 38’’
West (Aquell pass) – 1º 24’ 34’’
East (River Palomera – River Ariège) – 1º 47’ 19’’
Highest point – Peak of Comapedrosa 2,942 m
Lowest point – Confluence of the River Runer 840 m
Woodland – 38%
High mountain fields – 26%
Scree and rocky areas – 20%
Urban areas and infrastructures – 5%
Spain – 63,7 km
France – 56,6 km
Andorra has no airport but the roads to Spain and France allow getting to the airports of Barcelona and Toulouse within approximately 3 hours. It takes about 10 hours to drive to Paris and 8 hours — to Madrid.
The Principality of Andorra is a parliamentary democracy.The capital of Andorra is Andorra La Vella. The country is divided into 7 administrative districts (Comu). Andorra has got its own Constitution since 1993; the country is a member of UNO and other big international organizations, both political and economic.
The labor force for 01.10.2017 is 37 134 people. The level of unemployment currently makes up 2.9%. 94.9% of labor force is occupied in the sphere of services; 4.7%– in industrial sphere and only 0.4% — in agriculture. The minimal wage is 962 euro/month. The average amount of wage is 1994 euro/month. The inflation in 2015 made up 1.6%.
Together with Lichtenstein and Monaco Andorra can be attributed to the so called European “tax heavens”. The direct taxation is 10% on income tax (0% if the profit is less than 24000 euro per year) and 4.5% VAT. Business taxation is the most liberal in Europe. Since 2012 the profit tax for the companies makes up 10% with 8% of potential decrease.
In Julay 2017 Standard & Poor’s improved Andorra’s sovereign rating from “BBB- / A-3” to “BBB / A-2” in the long-term and short-term, and maintains a stable outlook.
Andorra is not a member of EU, though the national currency is euro. The banking system of Andorra is represented by 4 bank groups of Andorran origin and 1 foreign bank. Experts state that currently the private banking system of Andorra could be considered the most reliable. The banks of Andorra work from Monday till Friday, working hours from 9.30 till 16.30 with a lunch break from 12.00 till 14.00.
Andorra is the only country in the world with 3 systems of education in 1 country: Andorran, Spanish, French. As Irina Bokova (UNESCO CEO) said, “3 free education systems in Andorra—French, Spanish and Andorran – gives the chance to use this experience for the development of Global Education First Initiative (GEFI).
Andorra is a country of duty-free trade with the lowest VAT in Europe (4.5%). The prices for luxury, perfume, clothes, some foods, alcohol, tobacco, household appliances are 15-20% lower than the European ones.
The inseparable beauty of landscapes and resorts, skiing, thermal springs, duty and excise free trade, low level of criminal activity, excellent ecological conditions, a relatively low cost of living in comparison to the neighbor France and Spain attract approximately 10 mln of tourists per year.
Antique Roman art traces are visible everywhere and could be found in most small churches and medieval bridges. The majority of festivals and popular traditional holidays correspond to the religious events and natural cycles of the Earth.
90% of the population consider themselves Catholics. In accordance to the Constitution of Andorra, Catholicism is not a state religion. Though there is a freedom of religion in the country, Catholic Church is mentioned separately in the Major low.
The state language of Andorra is Catalan (catala). Other (official) languages in Andorra: Spanish, French, Portugues. Look for details: https://all-andorra.com/map-2/