Population: 8,746 million
Area: 112 090 km2
GDP (PPP): 41 billion dollar (2015 estimate)
GDP per capita (PPP): 5 000 $ (2015 estimate)
Rate of growth: 1.68 % (2015 estimate)
Head of state and head of government: Juan Orlando Hernandez Alvarado
Honduras gained its independence from Spain in 1821. In 1982, the country got its first democratically elected civil government thereby putting an end to decades of military governments. During the 80s, Nicaraguan Contras sought refuge in Honduras from the marxist Sandinista government.
The situation pertaining to human rights has improved in the last 20 years. Honduras has ratified the main conventions and there are no obvious problems as to their implementation. Rule of law is weakened by a legal system that is politicised, corrupt and generally inefficient. The police are often involved in drug trafficking and extrajudicial execution. Freedom of speech and freedom of press is restricted.
Honduras is the second poorest country in Central America and ranks among the poorest countries in the western hemisphere. Relative political stability over the most recent couple of decades has ensured modest economic growth. However, hurricane Mitch eradicated much of this progress when it hit Honduras in 1998. Proprietary rights are not sufficiently safeguarded and the extensive bureaucracy is a deterrent to companies and investors.
The conservative candidate from the Jarl Hjalmarson Foundation’s cooperation party Partido Nacional de Honduras (PNH), Juan Hernandez, won the presidential elections in November 2013, after promises to crack down on the drug-related violence. Hernandez comes from the same party as the previous President Porfirio Lobo and shares his liberal economic policies. The next presidential elections take place in November 2017.
The Partido Nacional de Honduras was founded in 1902. Historically, it has been one of the two most influential parties in the country. The PNH’s platform is based on the Christian Humanist Doctrine, and its five main principles; common wealth, dignity of the human person, equality, solidarity and subsidiarity. Since the foundation of the party, Honduras has had 13 presidents from it with Manuel Bonilla being the first (1903-1907). NP is a member of the regional cooperation organisation UPLA, which is a member of the International Democrat Union (IDU).
It is a stated goal of the Jarl Hjalmarson Foundation to educate female and youth decision-makers. In 2012, a number of conferences on the theme “Empoderamiento de Mujeres” took place with participants from different Latin American countries. Concurrently with these conferences, youth conferences were arranged on the theme “Principles for a Free Society”.