Costa Rica: Government

Republic of Costa Rica Flag
Coat of Arms of Republic of Costa Rica

Key Figures

Chief of State: President Luis Guillermo Solís

Head of Government: President Luis Guillermo Solís

Overview

Government Name: Republic of Costa Rica

Constitution: Adopted: 1949; Provides for the separation of powers between the legislative, executive, and judicial branches. Also establishes the protection for private property and the protection of intellectual property rights.

Government Type: Democratic Republic

Main Powers Election Process Election Cycle Source: ElectionGuide, http://www.electionguide.org/
Executive

The president has limited powers. It cannot veto the legislative budget, but can appoint anyone to their cabinet without approval from congress. The vice-presidents take over reign in the event of the president being unable to do so.

The president is elected by the qualified majority. The vice-presidents are elected on the same ticket as president.

4 years

Judicial

The supreme court exercises judicial power. The constitutional chamber reviews the constitutionality of legislation, executive decrees, and all habeas corpus warrants.

The supreme court is nominated by the legislative assembly.

8 years

Legislative

The legislative assembly's power is vested within the assembly.

The legislative assembly has 57 members who are elected through a closed-list proportional representation system.

4 years

International Relations

Foreign Policy Trends: Costa Rica is an active member of the international community and proclaimed its permanent neutrality in 1993. Its record on the environment and human rights and advocacy of peaceful settlement of disputes give it a weight in world affairs far beyond its size. The country lobbied aggressively for the establishment of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and became the first nation to recognize the jurisdiction of the Inter-American Human Rights Court, based in San Jose. Costa Rica has been a strong proponent of regional arms limitation agreements. In 2009, Costa Rica completed its third term as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council.

Regional Trade Blocs: No Regional Trade Blocs.

Treaties: No multilateral military treaties


International Organization Participation  Source: CIA World Factbook

BCIE CACM CD CELAC FAO G-77
IADB IAEA IBRD ICAO ICC ICRM
IDA IFAD IFC IFRCS ILO IMF
IMO IMSO Interpol IOC IOM IPU
ISO ITSO ITU ITUC LAES LAIA
MIGA NAM OAS OPANAL OPCW Pacific Alliance
PCA SICA UN UNCTAD UNESCO UNHCR
UNIDO Union Latina UNWTO UPU WCO WFTU
WHO WIPO WMO WTO

Note: Click table to see details


Environmental Agreements  Source: CIA World Factbook

Biodiversity Climate Change Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol Desertification Endangered Species Environmental Modification
Hazardous Wastes Law of the Sea Marine Dumping Marine Life Conservation Ozone Layer Protection Tropical Timber 06
Wetlands Whaling

Note: Click table to see details



Sources:

CIA World Factbook and U.S. Bilateral Relations Fact Sheets except where stated otherwise.

Glossary