According to THERELIGIONFAQS.COM, Bolivia is located in the central zone of South America, between the meridians 57º 26´ and 69º 38´ of western longitude of the Greenwich Meridian and the parallels 9º 38´ and 22º 53´ of south latitude therefore it covers more than 13º geographic. Its 1,098,581 km² of surface extend from the Central Andes, passing through part of the Chaco to the Amazon. The geographic center of the country is located in the Puerto Estrella area on the Grande River in the Ñuflo de Chávez province of the Department of Santa Cruz.
The territory of Bolivia, politically and administratively, is divided into departments, provinces, municipalities and native indigenous peasant territories. It has 9 departments, 112 provinces and 339 municipalities
- Santa Cruz
The most important economic activities in Bolivia are mining and the extraction of natural gas and oil, both belonging to the primary sector. Within the secondary sector, the beer, dairy, oilseed, cement and textile industries stand out for sales. Telecommunications companies stand out in the tertiary sector.
- See related article: National Bank of Bolivia (BNB). Bolivian national institution founded in 1872 in the city of Cobija
Tourism is mainly concentrated in La Paz, with 46.5%; Santa Cruz 28.3% and Cochabamba 8%, which account for 82.2% of international receptive tourism. While internal tourism was directed to Santa Cruz with 28.7%; La Paz 23.6% and Cochabamba 15.4%, which accounted for 67.9 of the total displacement of Bolivians in the country.
By the end of the 2006 administration, more than 500 thousand foreign visitors were expected to arrive in Bolivia. There are already hundreds of thousands of Bolivians who work in jobs directly or indirectly related to tourism: hotels, hostels, restaurants, night entertainment centers, passenger transport, airlines, souvenir making, etc. The country’s tourism potential is such that experts say it could compete with Brazil.
According to the National Institute of Statistics of Bolivia, the residents registered in the last census of 2001 were 8,274,325 residents, of which 4,123,850 are men and 4,150,475 are women, however currently they reach approximately 9,827.522 residents (2007).
In the last fifty years the Bolivian population has tripled, reaching an annual growth rate of 2.25%. The population increase in the intercensal periods 1950–1976 and 1976–1992. The annual growth rate for the first intercensal period was 2.05% between 1976–1992, while growth at the last census of 2001 reached 2.74% per year.
62.43% of Bolivians live in urban areas and the rest 37.57% in rural areas.
Main article: Ethnic groups of Bolivia.
The ethnic composition of Bolivia includes a great diversity of cultures. Most of the indigenous people have assimilated the mestizo culture, diversifying and expanding their ancestral roots. Consequently, in Bolivia the mixture of cultures is verified, uniting Hispanic aspects with the Amerindian.
The indigenous-native peoples of Bolivia are divided into two branches: The Ethnic Groups of the Andes settled for the most part in the altiplanic regions and valleys; and the Ethnic Groups of the Eastern Plains that are located in the warm regions to the northeast of the central mountain range and the southeastern regions (Gran Chaco).
Bolivia has a rich linguistic variety as a result of its multicultural condition and its official language is Spanish, which is the most widely spoken in the whole country according to the 2001 Census, by 83% of the residents as the mother tongue or second language in some populations natives.
The Political Constitution of 2009 recognizes Bolivia as a Plurinational State, so in addition to Spanish, 37 languages of the original indigenous nations are recognized as official languages.
Contemporary Bolivian culture is the result of the fusion of Inca and Hispanic cultures that has preserved the traditions of its ancestors in clothing, language and lifestyle.
In Bolivia there are about 40 ethnic groups, ethnic groups that in many cases preserve their traditions, cultures and languages.
Bolivia presents in all its cultural variants an enormous indigenous influence.
The “Cultural Heritage of Bolivia” is made up of all intangible and tangible cultural assets, both movable and immovable, found or produced in the Bolivian territory, as an individual or collective product, that as a testimony of material or immaterial human creation, artistic, scientific, archaeological, urban, documentary or technical that are susceptible to a declaration of this nature.
The Bolivian State recognizes the multicultural, multiethnic and multilingual conformation of the Nation, and enshrines the principles of interculturality, inter-institutionalism and social participation as pillars of the integrated conservation of the Cultural Heritage of Bolivia.
The State has as one of its highest functions, the protection with equity of the tangible and intangible heritage of all cultures that develop in the national territory and that make up the Cultural Heritage of Bolivia, and promotes the recognition, rescue, recreation, preservation, integrated conservation, access and dissemination of cultural heritage as a right of all the country’s residents.
Bolivia contains an enormous historical and cultural wealth, which is expressed in a universally praised tourist importance for lovers of nature, anthropology, archeology and paleontology.