This article is about the country. For other uses and spellings, see Colombia (disambiguation).
Not to be confused with Columbia (disambiguation).

Republic of Colombia
República de Colombia  ( Spanish)
Flag of Colombia
Coat of arms of Colombia
Flag Coat of arms
Motto: "Libertad y Orden" (Spanish)
"Freedom and Order"
Anthem:  ¡Oh, Gloria Inmarcesible!  (Spanish)
O unfading glory!
Location of Colombia
and largest city
4°35′N 74°4′W / 4.583°N 74.067°W / 4°35′N 74°4′W / 4.583; -74.067
Official languages Spanisha
Recognised regional languages 68 ethnic languages and dialects. English is also official in the archipelago of San Andrés, Providencia and Santa Catalina.
Ethnic groups (2005 [1] [2])
Demonym Colombian
Government Unitary presidential constitutional republic
•  President
Juan Manuel Santos
Germán Vargas Lleras
Mauricio Lizcano
Margarita Cabello Blanco
Legislature Congress
Chamber of Representatives
Independence from Spain
•  Declared
20 July 1810
• Recognized
7 August 1819
• Last unitarisation
4 July 1991
• Total
1,141,748 km2 (440,831 sq mi) ( 25th)
• Water (%)
8.8 (17th)
• January 2017 estimate
49,034,411 [3] ( 28th)
• 2005 census
42,888,592 [3]
• Density
40.74/km2 (105.5/sq mi) ( 173rd)
GDP ( PPP) 2017 estimate
• Total
$724.167  billion [4] ( 31st)
• Per capita
$14,687 [4]
GDP (nominal) 2017 estimate
• Total
$300.988  billion [4] ( 32nd)
• Per capita
$6,104 [4]
Gini (2015)  52.2 [5]
HDI (2014) Increase 0.720 [6]
high ·  97th
Currency Peso ( COP)
Time zone COT ( UTC−5b)
Date format dd−mm−yyyy (CE)
Drives on the right
Calling code +57
ISO 3166 code CO
Internet TLD .co
  1. Although the Colombian Constitution specifies Spanish (Castellano) as the official language in all Colombian territory, other languages spoken in the country by ethnic groups -- approximately 68 languages -- each is also official in its own territory. [7] English is also official in the archipelago of San Andrés, Providencia and Santa Catalina. [8]
  2. The official Colombian time [9] is controlled and coordinated by the National Institute of Metrology. [10]

Colombia ( /kəˈlʌmbiə/ kə-LUM-biə or /kəˈlɒmbiə/ kə-LOM-biə; Spanish:  [koˈlombja]), officially the Republic of Colombia ( Spanish: About this sound  República de Colombia ), [Note 1] is a transcontinental country largely situated in the northwest of South America, with territories in Central America. Colombia shares a border to the northwest with Panama, to the east with Venezuela and Brazil and to the south with Ecuador and Peru. [11] It shares its maritime limits with Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, Jamaica, the Dominican Republic and Haiti. [12] It is a unitary, constitutional republic comprising thirty-two departments. The territory of what is now Colombia was originally inhabited by indigenous peoples including the Muisca, the Quimbaya and the Tairona.

The Spanish arrived in 1499 and initiated a period of conquest and colonization ultimately creating the Viceroyalty of New Granada, with its capital at Bogotá. Independence from Spain was won in 1819, but by 1830 the " Gran Colombia" Federation was dissolved. What is now Colombia and Panama emerged as the Republic of New Granada. The new nation experimented with federalism as the Granadine Confederation (1858), and then the United States of Colombia (1863), before the Republic of Colombia was finally declared in 1886. Panama seceded in 1903. Since the 1960s the country has suffered from an asymmetric low-intensity armed conflict, which escalated in the 1990s but then decreased from 2005 onward. [13] Colombia is one of the most ethnically and linguistically diverse countries in the world, and thereby possesses a rich cultural heritage. Cultural diversity has also been influenced by Colombia's varied geography, and the imposing landscape of the country has resulted in the development of very strong regional identities. The urban centres are mostly located in the highlands of the Andes mountains.

Colombian territory also encompasses Amazon rainforest, tropical grassland and both Caribbean and Pacific coastlines. Ecologically, it is one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries, and the most densely biodiverse of these per square kilometer. [14] Colombia is a middle power and a regional actor with the fourth-largest economy in Latin America, [4] is part of the CIVETS group of six leading emerging markets and is an accessing member to the OECD. [15] Colombia has a diversified economy with macroeconomic stability and favorable growth prospects in the long run. [16] [17]


The name "Colombia" is derived from the last name of Christopher Columbus ( Italian: Cristoforo Colombo, Spanish: Cristóbal Colón). It was conceived by the Venezuelan revolutionary Francisco de Miranda as a reference to all the New World, but especially to those portions under Spanish and Portuguese rule. The name was later adopted by the Republic of Colombia of 1819, formed from the territories of the old Viceroyalty of New Granada (modern-day Colombia, Panama, Venezuela, Ecuador, and northwest Brazil). [18]

When Venezuela, Ecuador and Cundinamarca came to exist as independent states, the former Department of Cundinamarca adopted the name " Republic of New Granada". New Granada officially changed its name in 1858 to the Granadine Confederation. In 1863 the name was again changed, this time to United States of Colombia, before finally adopting its present name – the Republic of Colombia – in 1886. [18]

To refer to this country, the Colombian government uses the terms Colombia and República de Colombia.