French Polynesia


The French annexed various Polynesian island groups during the 19th century. In September 1995, France stirred up widespread protests by resuming nuclear testing on the Mururoa atoll after a three-year moratorium. The tests were halted in January 1996. In recent years, French Polynesia's autonomy has been considerably expanded.

Other Information

Natural Resources

timber, fish, cobalt, hydropower

Land Use

arable land: 0.68%
permanent crops: 6.28%
other: 93.03% (2011)


280,026 (July 2014 est.)
country comparison to the world: 182

Ethnic Groups

Polynesian 78%, Chinese 12%, local French 6%, metropolitan French 4%


Protestant 54%, Roman Catholic 30%, other 10%, no religion 6%


French (official) 61.1%, Polynesian (official) 31.4%, Asian languages 1.2%, other 0.3%, unspecified 6% (2002 census)


definition: age 14 and over can read and write
total population: 98%
male: 98%
female: 98% (1977 est.)


Papeete (located on Tahiti)

Government Type

parliamentary representative democratic French overseas collectivity


none (overseas lands of France)

National Holiday

Fete de la Federation, 14 July (1789); note - the local holiday is Internal Autonomy Day, 29 June (1880)