Category: from a friend
Date: August 2004
Luxembourg is a landlocked country in western Europe, bordered by Belgium, France, and Germany. Luxembourg has a population of over half a million people in an area of approximately 2,586 square kilometres (999 sq mi). A representative democracy with a constitutional monarch, it is ruled by a grand duke. It is now the world's only remaining sovereign grand duchy. The country has a highly developed economy, with the world's highest GDP (nominal) per capita according to the IMF. However, it also suffers the world's highest external debt burden. Its historic and strategic importance dates back to its founding as a Roman era fortress site and Frankish count's castle site in the Early Middle Ages. It was an important bastion along the Spanish Road when Spain was the principal European power influencing the whole western hemisphere and beyond in the 16th–17th centuries.