Jurisdiction Project


Guam, an organized, unincorporated territory of the United States, is in the North Pacific Ocean, about three-quarters of the way from Hawaii to the Philippines. The military installation on the island is one of the most strategically important US bases in the Pacific.

The largest and southernmost island in the Mariana Islands archipelago; strategic location in western North Pacific Ocean. Coastline: 125.5 km Territorial Sea: 12 nautical miles Exclusive Economic Zone: 200 nautical miles Highest Elevation: 406 m Of volcanic origin, surrounded by coral reefs; relatively flat coralline limestone plateau (source of most fresh water), with steep coastal cliffs and narrow coastal plains in north, low hills in center, mountains in south.

Guam serves as a strategic location to serve as a staging base and operating location for mobilizing U.S. military forces and equipment within the Western Pacific.

Latitude and Longitude:
13 28 N, 144 47 E

Time Zone:
GMT +10

Total Land Area:


Tropical marine; generally warm and humid, moderated by northeast trade winds; dry season from January to June, rainy season from July to December; little seasonal temperature variation. Frequent squalls during rainy season; relatively rare, but potentially very destructive typhoons (June - December).

Natural Resources:


Total GDP:
2000 3,200,000,000.00 USD
2500000 2,005.00 USD

Per Capita GDP:
2005 21,000.00 USD
2005 15,000.00 USD

% of GDP per Sector:
  Primary Secondary Tertiary
2002 7% 15% 78%

% of Population Employed by Sector
  Primary Secondary Tertiary
2000 3% 21% 78%
2004 26% 10% 64%

External Aid/Remittances:
Guam receives large transfer payments from the US Federal Treasury. Federal expenditure accounted for 24.5 percent of the 2000 GIP figure, 27.9 percent of the 1999 GIP figure, 28.1 percent of the 1998 GIP figure. The Federal Government plays a vital role in the economic affairs of the island of Guam. Federal Government expenditures: $908 million (2001) Population below poverty line: 23% (2001). Median Household Income: 38 317 (2000); 41 472 (1990); % Change: -5.2%; Mean Household Income: 49 617 (2000); 52 419 (1990); % Change: -5.3%.

Growth Rate: 1.5% (2004). Primary Imports: $42 777 224 USD – petroleum and petroleum products, food, manufactured goods. Imports per capita: $1238.25 per person. Primary Exports: $75 748 335 USD – mostly transhipments of refined petroleum products; construction materials, fish, food and beverage products. Exports per capita: $461.75 per person. Labour Force: 68 894 (2000); 66 138 (1990). Civilian Labour Force: 64 452 (2000); 54 186 (1990); % Change: 18.9%; Employed: 57 053 (2000); 52 144 (1990); % Change: 9.4%; Unemployed: 7 399 (2000); 2 042 (1990); % Change: 262.3%; Armed Forces: 4 442 (2000); 11 952 (1990); % Change: -62.8%.

Labour Force:
2000 68,894
1990 66,138
2002 62,050

Year: Unemployment Rate (% of pop.)
2000 11.5%
1990 4%
2002 11.4%

US military, tourism, construction, transshipment services, concrete products, printing and publishing, food processing, textiles. Guam has a Commercial Port which serves domestic and foreign vessels. The majority of these fishing vessels are Japanese and Taiwanese long-liners serving Asian sashimi markets. A processing plant also exists on the grounds of the port. Employed Civilian Population 16 years and over: 57 053 (2000); Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting, and Mining: 296 (2000); 568 (1990); % Change: -47.9%; Construction: 5 532 (2000); 8 023 (1990); % Change: -31.0%; Manufacturing: 1 155 (2000); 2 302 (1990); % Change: -49.8%; Wholesale Trade: 1 948 (2000); 1 584 (1990); % Change: 23.0%; Retail Trade: 7 558 (2000); 9 959 (1990); % Change: -24.1%; Transportation and Warehousing: 4 319 (2000); 3 522 (1990); % Change: 22.6%; Information: 1 540 (2000); 958 (1990); % Change: 60.8%; Finance, Insurance, Real Estate, and Rental and Leasing: 3 053 (2000); 2 767 (1990); % Change: 10.3%; Professional, Scientific, Management, Administrative, and Waste Management: 4 277 (2000); 3 031 (1990); % Change: 41.1%; Educational, Health, and Social Services: 8 412 (2000); 6 296 (1990); % Change: 33.6%; Arts, Entertainment, Recreation, Accommodation, and Food Services: 10 278 (2000); 5 426 (1990); % Change: 89.4%; Other Services (except public administration): 2 158 (2000); 2 010 (1992); % Change: 7.4%; Public Administration: 6 527 (2000); 5 698 (1992); % Change: 14.5%.

Niche Industry:

Total visitor arrivals for 2000 were 1,288,002. This number represents a 10.9 percent increase over 1999’s total of 1,161,803. Visitor arrivals by air constitute 99 percent of Guam’s total number of visitors. Income Indicators: Gross Island Product (GIP): $3,419.9 million (2000), $3,025.0 million (1999), $3,550.7 million (1998); GIP per capita: $22,118 (2000), $19,906 (1999), $23,802 (1998); Tourism expenditure accounted for 37.5 percent of the 2000 GIP figure, 32.9 percent of the 1999 GIP figure, 31.0 percent of the 1998 GIP figure.


Imports and Exports:

Primary Imports:$42 777 224 USD – petroleum and petroleum products, food, manufactured goods.Imports per capita: $1238.25 per person. Primary Exports: $75 748 335 USD – mostly transhipments of refined petroleum products; construction materials, fish, food and beverage products. Exports per capita: $461.75 per person.

Tot. Value of Imports 701,000,000.00 USD (2004)
From Eu:
Import Partners (EU:)
Partners Outside EU:
Import Partners: Singapore 50%, South Korea 21.4%, Japan 14%, Hong Kong 4.6% (2006)
Tot. Value of Exports 45000000 USD (2004)
To Eu:
Export Partners:
Partners Outside EU::
Export Partners: Japan 67.2%, Singapore 11.6%, UK 4.8% (2006)
Main Imports: petroleum and petroleum products, food, manufactured goods
Main Exports: mostly transshipments of refined petroleum products; construction materials, fish, food and beverage products



Number of Airports: 5
5 (4 with paved runways) Its main commercial airport is the Antonio B. Won Pat International Airport.

Number of Main Ports:



Highways: 885 km (675 km of which are paved)


Other Forms of Transportation:
Railways: none; Waterways: none.

Economic Zones:
Guam has one commercial port (Port of Guam), which accommodates all international merchant vessels. Guam is a duty-free port. It provides means for the movement of raw materials for manufacturing. Guam is a participant of two major trade programs which benefits export-oriented manufacturing. The first is the “General Headnote 3(a) of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS).” This provides for the duty-free treatment of goods from the U.S., provided the goods are: manufactured or produced in the U.S. or produced in the customs territory of the U.S., which do not contain foreign materials of more than 70 percent of their total value or more than 50 percent of their total value with respect to the regulations set forth by the Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act (CBERA). The second trade program Guam is a party to is “The Generalized System of Preferences (GSP),” which permits developing countries and territories greater access to markets of developed nations. Provisions may vary upon the nation allowing access to be an advantage. Guam in particular, is a beneficiary territory to the following countries: Japan, Australia, Canada, and the European Common Market.

Energy Policy:

Year Total Energy Production (Mwh) Thermic (Mwh) Geothermic (Mwh) Other (Mwh) Total Energy Consumption (Mwh) Domestic (Mwh) Commercial (Mwh) Public Service (Mwh) Industry (Mwh) Public Lighting (Mwh)
2005 1,793,000 0 0 0 1,667,000 0 0 0 0 0


Official Currency:
US dollar (USD)

Banking and Insurance:
Number of Banks and Credit Unions:
Number of Agricultural Credit Unions:
Number of Insurance Companies:

 Financial Institutions & Incentives: The Eighteenth Annual Report of the Banking Commissioner has listed the following licensed financial institutions for 2000: two (2) national banks; three (3) state banks; two (2) territorial banks; four (4) foreign banks; two (2) savings and loan associations; three (3) offshore lending facilities and twenty three (23) finance companies. These institutions come under the supervision of the banking Division, Department of Revenue and Taxation. As of December 31, 2000, the combined total assets for financial institutions licensed to do business in Guam was $3.3. billion, a decrease of eleven percent compared to the previous year’s total of $3.7 billion. Total deposits for the same period ending was $2 billion, a decrease of five percent compared to the previous year’s total of $2.1 billion. This reduction was caused by the decline on the deposits of offshore lending facilities, territorial banks, savings and loans and finance companies.

Financial Services:
Investment Incentives: To stimulate the economic growth and development of Guam, the Guam Economic Development Authority (GEDA) sets policies concerning commerce,agriculture, industry, and tourism. GEDA is authorized to allow tax rebates and abatements to qualified investors who may be granted a maximum of 75% income tax rebates for up to 20 years; 100% abatement on real property taxes for up to 10 years; up to 75% rebate of dividends income tax withheld from qualified shareholders for 5 years; and abatement on gross receipts taxes on petroleum and alcoholic beverages made in Guam up to ten years. In recent years, several laws have been passed to encourage the location of insurance underwriters on Guam, and to expand the finance and investment sectors of the island economy towards making Guam a centre for financial investment.


Public Ownership:
There are three categories of land-use ownership: private, Government of Guam, and the U.S. Government. The Federal Government holds about 30 percent of the total land area; the Government of Guam approximately 25 percent; and the remaining 45 percent is privately owned. Private land ownership on Guam is not restricted on the basis of nationality or residency and title can be held in fee simple. Some Federal military land has recently been turned back for the Government of Guam determination as to future use.

Land Use:
arable land: 3.64% permanent crops: 18.18% other: 78.18% (2005)

Agriculture is Guam’s smallest industry. It employs 410 persons out of a total workforce of 60,210 as of December, 2000. These persons earn an annual average salary of $19,992.

Marine Activity:

Aquaculture represents a part of the economy that is relatively new, with the first experimental and demonstration farm having been established in 1973. The estimated value of Guam’s aquaculture production in 1998 totalled $1.7 million. Current estimates indicate the island imports approximately $12 million worth of fish annually. Production from the aquaculture industry can replace a significant portion of these imports.

Marine Life:

Critical Issues:
Terrestrial Waste Management Practices: Waste management is considered one of the most critical issues facing the territory. All US Federal environmental laws and regulations are enforced, including a waste management program for all marine sources. Sea dumping is under active consideration by the government as a disposal option. It is intended that larger, inert items, such as a car bodies and defunct shipping containers, would be dumped into the deep waters surrounding the island. Sewage in Guam is disposed via either septic tanks or community-based systems that collect household sewage and discharge to sea. The majority of hazardous wastes existing in Guam are stored at the military bases. All hazardous materials are shipped off island for final disposal. The US Federal Coast Guard is responsible for all maritime enforcement and is the agency responsible for coordinating all marine pollution responses and contingencies plans. Extirpation of native bird population by the rapid proliferation of the brown tree snake, an exotic, invasive species.


Hagatna (Agana). Guam is a territory of the United States with policy relations between Guam and the US under the jurisdiction of the Office of Insular Affairs, US Department of the Interior.

Political System:
The legal system is modeled on the United States; US federal laws apply. Political System: An unincorporated soil of the United States since 1950, the local government is organized into three branches -- legislative, executive and judicial. Legislative branch: The legislative branch consists of a unicameral legislature of 15 senators elected for two-year terms. The legislature is responsible for creating laws. It also provides a check on the other branches of government by its authority to approve or disapprove the policies of the Government of Guam pertaining to the use of funds held in the public trust. Judicial branch: Federal District Court (judge is appointed by the president); Territorial Superior Court (judges appointed for eight-year terms by the governor)Guam's judicial branch decides issues of constitutionality of local laws and interprets how these laws should be applied. Guam’s Judiciary system consists of one Federal District Court, the Superior Court of Guam, and the Supreme Court of Guam. The President of the United States appoints the Presiding Judge of the Federal Court to an eight-year term. This Court has jurisdiction over cases involving federal issues. The Superior Court of Guam has authority over all cases arising under the laws of Guam. This includes family matters, small claims,traffic and Probate, civil and land registrations. The Judiciary consists of one Federal District Court and a Superior Court, and a Supreme Court. Since July 6, 2000, The Supreme Court of Guam has assumed appellate jurisdiction over lower local Courts. The President of the United States with the consent of the Senate appoints the Presiding Judge of the Federal Court to an eight-year term. This Court has jurisdiction over cases involving federal issues. The Superior Court of Guam has authority over all cases arising under the laws of Guam. This includes family matters, small claims, traffic, probate, civil and land registration. Local Government: US Federal laws and regulations have application in the territory. The United States Coast Guard exercise flag and port control. The US Coast Guard is responsible for all maritime enforcement and is the agency responsible for coordinating all marine pollution responses contingency plans and vessel inspections. Although Guam is a United States unincorporated territory, applicable federal laws are subject to U.S. Congressional approval. Guam is considered a duty-free port, however, U.S. import tariff laws do not apply. While federal banking and transportation laws and regulations are generally applied to Guam, Congress has provided specific exemptions to certain statutes.

Political Parties:

Important Legislation:

Principal Taxes:
Tax Law: Guam income taxes to “mirror” federal income taxes. “Mirror” means that whenever federal laws refers to federal tax jurisdiction, Guam law refers to Guam, and whenever federal law refers to Guam, Guam law refers to federal jurisdiction. The Guam income tax law is federal with revenues going to the Government of Guam. Guam is free to pass other laws. The major taxes include a four percent tax on Gross Business Receipts. This applies to all business sales except for wholesale sales. There are also excise taxes on liquor, tobacco, and liquid fuels. Federal income taxes collected from military personnel and other Federal Government jemployees on Guam revert to the Government of Guam.

Associated Power:
United States

United States citizen.



Island Area (km sq.) Population % of Total Population
0 0 %

Percentage living in urban areas: 94% (2003); Percentage living in rural areas: 6% (2003). US Military Related Population: 22 178 (1992); 11 625 (2000).

Year Resident Population

Age of Population: 0-14 15-24 25-49 50-64 65 and up
2007 49624 0 0 111,895 11,937


• Stock of immigrants: 113,409 • Stock of immigrants as percentage of population: 66.9% • Female as percentage of immigrants: 46.5% • Refugees as percentage of immigrants: 0.0% • Top 10 source countries: Philippines, United States, Micronesia, Fed. Sts., Rep. of Korea, China, Japan, Northern Mariana Islands, Palau, Marshall Islands, Puerto Rico. • Stock of emigrants: 82,502 • Stock of emigrants as percentage of population: 48.6% • Top 10 destination countries: United States, Philippines, Fiji, Mexico, Northern Mariana Islands, Palau, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand.(2005)

Crude Birth Rate:
2004 19.31%
2007 1.856%

Life Expedctancy:
(Female):80.9 years (2003); (Male): 75.96 years (2003); (Total Population): 78.27 years (2003).

Crude Death Rate:
2004 4.23%
2007 0.456%

Chamorro 37%, Filipino 26%, white 10%, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and other 27%.

Class Division:
When Europeans first arrived on Guam, Chamorro society roughly fell into three classes: matua (upper class), achaot (middle class), and mana'chang (lower class). The matua were located in the coastal villages, which meant they had the best access to fishing grounds while the mana'chang were located in the interior of the island. Matua and mana'chang rarely communicated with each other, and matua often used achaot as a go-between.

English 38.3%, Chamorro 22.2%, Philippine languages 22.2%, other Pacific island languages 6.8%, Asian languages 7%, other languages 3.5% (2000 census)

Roman Catholic 85%, other 15% (1999).

 99%; [99% of males, 99% of females] of population over the age of 15 years who can read and write (1990).

Education System:
36 public schools, 21 private schools, 1 community college, 1 (US accredited) university.

Total Pre-schools:()
Total Primary Schools  
First Level:
Second Level:
Third Level:
Total Secondary Schools:
Total Professional Schools


Number of Schools per Island:


Students Enrolled:


The Guam Public School System is a single unified school district consisting of grades Kindergarten through 12. Our twenty-five elementary schools, seven middle schools, four high schools and an alternative school serve over 30,000 students.

Medical Services:
Infant Mortality: Total: 7.15 deaths/1,000 live births; Male: 7.8 deaths/1,000 live births; Female: 6.46 deaths/1,000 live births (2004). Hospitals: Two hospital facilities. (1) Naval Regional Medical Center – provides services to veterans, active-duty personnel and military dependents. (2) Guam Memorial Hospital – provides health care for the remainder of the general public. - 192 bed capacity; - 159 acute care beds; - 33 long-term care beds. Emergency Clinics:7; Pharmacies: 20; Physicians: 150; Dentists: 28.


 It is believed that Guam was first discovered by sea-faring people who migrated from southeastern Indonesia around 2000 BC. Most of what is known about Pre-Contact ("Ancient") Chamorros comes from legends and myths, archaeological evidence, Jesuit missionary accounts, and observations from visiting scientists.On March 6, 1521 Ferdinand Magellan came across Guam on his expedition to circumnavigate the globe.Within decades, Guam was colonized by Spain. On June 21, 1898, Guam was captured by the United States in a bloodless landing during the Spanish-American War. By the Treaty of Paris, Spain officially ceded Guam to the United States. During World War II, Guam was attacked and invaded by the Japanese armed forces shortly after December 7, 1941. Most U.S. military personnel evacuated prior to the invasion.The Battle of Guam started on July 21, 1944 with American troops landing on the island and Guam was recaptured from Japanese military rule on August 10 in an Allied victory.


Recent Significant Events:

Music, Dance, Handicraft and Patrimony:
Music: Traditional Chamorro instruments include the belembaotuyan, a hollow gourd stringed instrument, and the nose flute. Kantan singing is also popular. It is a kind of work song, begun by one person teasing another in verse form, and then continuing through a group one individual in turn. Chamorro chants and Kantan Chamorrita (Chamorrita singing), a kind of Chamorro poetry, are also important elements of Guamian music. Kantan Chamorrita is a kind of improvised poetry with a call and response format that is documented back to 1602 and remains a vital part of Chamorro culture. In Kantan Chamorrita, individuals and groups trade witty remarks at each other as part of a debate. These songs are "ancient folk songs, arranged in quatrains of two octosyllabic couplets, which, according to some writers, are composed on a single melody, the variations depending on the individual style of performance. The distinctive features are spontaneous improvisation and a dialogue performance between two or more people, depending on the occasion and function". Dance: Most of Guam’s dances are either brought from the Spanish or the Philippines. For instance, the Philippines presented the Bamboo dance or Tilinting to Guam. The Spanish presented the Batso or waltz. It is the most popular dance on Guam aside from the Sottes; a fast speed tango.


http://www.spc.int/prism/country/gu/stats/ http://www.phrasebase.com/countries/Guam.html http://www.investguam.com/pft/seaport.html http://ns.gov.gu/government.html http://www.admin.gov.gu/commerce/economy.htm http://www.admin.gov.gu/commerce/guam_trade_indicators.htm http://www.countryreports.org/country.asp?countryid=99&countryName=Guam http://www.sprep.org.ws/publication/webpage/003ship_waste/ships%20waste/Guam/Guam%204%20jul%2002.PDF#search='Country%20Report%20%20Guam' http://www.archives.gov/research_room/genealogy/census/nonpopulation_guam.html http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/gq.html www.indexmundi.com/guam/waterways.html http://www.nationmaster.com/country/gq http://www.investguam.com/eqf/health.html http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transportation_in_Guam




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