Map Page 1128 Area 6,767 square mi (18,270 square km) Population 868,531 Capital Suva Highest Point Tomanivi 4,343 ft (1,324 m) Lowest Point 0 m GDP per capita $5,600 Primary Natural Resources timber, fish, gold, copper, offshore oil.
THE REPUBLIC OF the Fiji Islands, a part of Oceania, is an archipelago in the South PACIFIC OCEAN, about one-third of the way from NEW ZEALAND to HAWAII.
The island group consists of 332 islands (110 inhabited) and has a combined area somewhat smaller than NEW JERSEY.
The islands consist mainly of volcanic hills and mountains that are lush in tropical vegetation.
The climate is tropical maritime and is characterized by a dominance of warm, moist air masses, high levels of precipitation, cyclonic storms (November through January), and minimal seasonal temperature fluctuation.
Fiji has a high birth rate (23/1000 in 2003), a low death rate (5.7/1000 in 2003), a rapid rate of natural increase (1.7 percent), and a notable out-migration.
Population density is moderate, life expectancy is fairly high (68.9 years), and the median age, only 23.7 years, is markedly lower than for North America.
The majority ethnic group, Fijian (51 percent), is mainly Melanesian with a strong Polynesian influence.
Minority groups include Indians (44 percent), who are mostly Hindu, Europeans, and other Pacific Islanders.
Christianity is the primary religion among the Fijians and in the island group as a whole (52 percent), especially Methodism and Catholicism, followed by Hinduism (38 percent) and Islam (8 percent).
English, the official language, is accompanied by Fijian and Hindustani.
Education is free for young people ages 6 to 14, and national literacy is above 90 percent.
Fiji has a well-developed economy based largely on sugar exports, tourism, clothing, copra, gold, silver, lumber, and small cottage industries.
Being insular, Fiji has a long total coastline and adheres to international guidelines for the division of ocean waters.
It claims a 12 nautical mi territorial sea and a 200 nautical mi Exclusive Economic Zone for resource development.
Given its rugged terrain, only 10.9 percent of this island country is arable.
Agriculture employs 17 percent of the official workforce and produces a range of commodities from sugar, cassava (tapioca), rice, and coconuts to sweet potatoes, bananas, pigs, and cattle.
With this production, Fiji faces serious ecological issues such as deforestation, soil erosion, chemical contamination, and siltation of internal waters.
Fiji received its independence from the United Kingdom on October 10, 1970, amended its constitution in July 1998 to include national open voting, and today has an elected government.
Poverty, subsistence living, political polarization between Fijians and Indians, and national fiscal management remain serious challenges.
The country's executive branch consists of a chief of state or president and a head of government or prime minister.
The parliament comprises a senate and house of representatives, and the supreme court oversees a legal system borrowed from the British.
The country is divided administratively into four divisions, the northern, eastern, western, and central, and one dependency, Rotuma.

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- You can now apply for Australian Visa through the Internet
"Country entry permit application has become facilitated and the procedure itself takes less time.
Starting from October 1 this year this new system allows to apply for visa online 24/7, including holidays.
Electronic system makes possible not to visit the consulate to apply for the entry permit and you no longer need to mail papers. Moreover, the authorized individuals for applying from the applicant are free to use this system to apply for a visa instead of the applicant.
You are able to verify your application status through the Internet and when you get the entry permit to Australia all the documents will be sent either to your e-mail address or by a registered letter on the mailing address specified in the application form. You will need to take the received document with you and be able to show it if needed. However, it is noted that the airline company will be aware whether you have got the Australian visa or not (airport staff have an access to the electronic data system, which will also include information about received entry permits) and therefore you may not show your visa at passport control and during the boarding. "

- Cardiff hosts Champions League final
"The final European club tournament football match 2017 will be held in the capital city in Wales. The final match will be held at the end of May at the Millennium Stadium with the max capacity of 74, 000 fans located in the central part of Cardiff.
The decision was taken at UEFA Executive Committee meeting in Prague.
European League final, the second leading tournament will be held in Stockholm at Friends Arena Stadium with a total capacity of about 50, 000 people.
The Super Cup match will stage in Skopje and will host Champions League and European League winners. "