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After three decades as part of the UN Trust Territory of the Pacific under US administration, this westernmost cluster of the Caroline Islands opted for independence in 1978 rather than join the Federated States of Micronesia. A Compact of Free Association with the US was approved in 1986, but not ratified until 1993. It entered into force the following year, when the islands gained independence.

Languages & Population

Approximate Population: 20,842 (July 2007 est.)

Nationality (Noun): Palauan(s)

Nationality (Adjective): Palauan

Official Language(s): Palauan, English

Major Languages Spoken: Chinese, English, Japanese, Palauan

Map of Palau

Country Facts

Country Name (long form): Republic of Palau

Country Name (short form): Palau

Country Name (local long form): Beluu er a Belau

Country Name (local short form): Belau

Name of Capital: Melekeok

UTC Time Difference (from capital): UTC+9 (14 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Countries Near by, and Bordering Palau: Guam, Indonesia

Land Area: 458 sq km

Comparative Area: slightly more than 2.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Coastline: 1,519 km

National Holiday: Constitution Day, 9 July (1979)

International Phone Code: 680

Currency Code: US dollar (USD)

Internet Country Code: .pw

US Embassy Location: Koror (no street address)

US Embassy Mailing Address: P. O. Box 6028, Republic of Palau 96940


Palau flag

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