Nauru is a small island nation in the South Pacific. Covering only 21 sq km (8.1 sq mi), it is the smallest island nation in the world. It is so small that you can see the whole of it from the plane (which would be true also for many other small countries). Its population is less than 10,000 people (2011 estimate). The capital is Yaren. Its official languages are English and Nauruan.
Nauru is 12 hours ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC+12). Traffic is driven on the left, just as in the United Kingdom. The Australian dollar is used here as the official currency. The phone IDD code is +674.
Nauru Parliament Building http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Nauru-parliament.jpg CdaMVvWgS
Captain John Fearn was the first European to arrive at Nauru. He named it Pleasant Island. The island was made a colony of Germany in 1888, and was added to the Marshall Island Protectorate. Phosphate was discovered on Nauru in 1900, and remains its chief export today.
Nauru fell under the control of Australia in the First World War. It was occupied by the Japanese during the Second World War. Nauru became self-governing from January 1966, and attained its independence in 1968. Today Nauru is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations.
Nauru was once considered one of richest countries in the world - based on its per capita income in the 1980's. Since then, the country has fallen on hard times. Its chief export, phosphate, is expected to be depleted by 2050, with no sign of an alternative form of income. Its choice of investments have often soured. The closure of a detention centre used by Australia was another concern for Nauru, as it let to further unemployment. 90% of the population is presently unemployed, and the per capita GDP is expected to continue dropping every year, unless Nauru find a new source of income.
Planning your visit to Nauru
The national carrier of Nauru, Air Nauru, was officially rebranded as Our Airline in 2006. It offers flights from Brisbane once a week. You need to have obtained a visa, made at a Nauru embassy, before you arrive in Nauru.
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