Iran fast facts

Geography

IranMap3Land Area:  1.65 million square kilometers (637,069 square miles) (slightly smaller than Alaska)

Terrain:  Rugged, mountainous rim. High, central basin with deserts, mountains. Small, discontinuous plains along both coasts

Arable Land:  10.8% (2011)

People

Population: 83,024,745 (July 2018)

Population Density: 50 per square kilometer

Population Growth: 1.19% annually (2018)

Age Structure: 0-14 years - 24.23%, 15-64 - 70.3%, 65 years and older - 5.48% (2018)

Median age: Total - 30.8 years, male - 30.5 years, female - 31 years (2018)

Life Expectancy: 74.2 years (men - 72.8 years, women - 75.6 years) (2018)

74.9% of the population lives in an urban environment (2018)

Major Cities: Capital is Tehran 8.896 million.  Other major cities: Mashhad 3.097 million, Isfahan 2.041 million, Tabriz 1.582 million, Karaj 1.585 million, Shiraz 1.605 million (2018)

Ethnic Groups:  Persian 61%, Azeri 16%, Kurd 10%, Lur 6%, Baluch 2%, Arab 2%, Turkoman and Turkic tribes 2%, other 1%

Literacy:  86.8% (2015)

Languages

Total languages:  78 (76 living, 2 extinct)

Languages:  Persian 58%, Azeri Turkic and Turkic dialects 27%, Kurdish 9%, Luri 2%, Baluchi 1%, Arabic 1%, other 2%

Languages with Scriptures:  22 Bibles, 7 New Testaments, 6 portions (2010)

Religion

Religions:  Shi'a Muslim 90-95%, Sunni Muslim 5-10%, Other (Zoroastrian, Jewish, Christian and Baha’i) 0.3%, Unspecified 0.4% (2011)

Shi’a Islam is the state religion but Sunni Islam is respected and is followed by the Turkoman, Kurd and Baluch populations.  All defections from Islam are severely dealt with, and Christian proselytism is forbidden.  The rights of Jews, Zoroastrians and Christians are guaranteed in writing by the Constitution but are closely monitored.

Communications

Telephones:  31.2 million (2017)

Mobile Telephones:  87.1 million (2017)

Radio Stations:  82 (1998)

Radios:  22 million (2005)

Television Stations:  29 plus 450 low-power repeaters (1997)

Televisions:  15 million (2007)

Internet Service Providers:  197,804 (2012)

Internet Users:  56.7 million (2018)

Facebook subscribers - 40 million (2017)

Economy

Monetary unit: 10 Iranian rials = 1 toman

Main exports: Petroleum, carpets, agricultural products, cement, ore

GNI per capita: US $21,010 (World Bank, 2017)

Labor force by occupation:  Agriculture 16.3%, industry 35.1%, services 48.6% (2013)

Unemployment rate:  11.8% (2017, est. by Iranian government)

Population below poverty line:  18.7% (2007)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:  lowest 10% - 2.6%, highest 10% - 29.6% (2018)

Data Sources:  World Factbook, BBC, Ethnologue Languages of the World, Internet World Stats and Operation World

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