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Country Profile - Guatemala


Guatemala is a small country located in Central America made up of beaches, volcanoes and mountains. It borders the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea, as well as the countries of El Salvador, Mexico, Honduras, and Belize.


General Information:

Capital: Guatemala City, locally known as Guatemala or Guate

Language: Spanish (official) 69.9%, Maya languages 29.7% (Q’eqchi’ 8.3%, K’iche 7.8%, Mam 4.4%, Kaqchikel 3%, Q’anjob’al 1.2%, Poqomchi’ 1%, other 4%), other 0.4% (includes Xinca and Garifuna) (2018 est.) The 2003 Law of National Languages officially recognised 23 indigenous languages, including 21 Maya languages, Xinca, and Garifuna

Religion: Roman Catholic, Protestant, indigenous Maya

Currency: The quetzal is the currency of Guatemala, named after the national bird of Guatemala.

Cryptocurrency: According to articles 1 and 2 of the Monetary Law, The quetzal is the national currency and the Bank of Guatemala is the only issuer of bills and coins within the national territory.  Therefore, cryptocurrency and virtual currencies are not recognised as a currency in Guatemala nor as foreign currency, therefore, they do not constitute a means of legal payment.

GMT: (-) 6 h Standard Time

 Guatemala is still trying to come to terms with a 36-year-long civil war. The conflict, which ended in 1996, pitted leftist, mostly Mayan insurgents against the state, which – backed by the US – waged a vicious campaign to eliminate the guerrillas. More than 200,000 people – most of them civilians – were killed or disappeared.

The country is a major corridor for smuggling drugs.

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