The principality of Monaco is microstate and a city-state located on the French Riviera in the western part of continental Europe. Monaco is the second smallest nation in the world after the Vatican and covers an area of 0.78 square miles. The country had a population of 38,000 people in 2016, which make the country as the most densely populous country in the world. Monaco has reclaimed land from the sea, and its land area has increased by 20% as of 2005. The country is famous for its tax rules, which has transformed the nation into the playing ground of the rich. By 2014, about 30% of the population were millionaires. The state of Monaco shares a land border with France on three different sides and one side it is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea. Monaco has a land border which stretches for 3.4 miles long and a coastline which cover a distance of 2.38 miles long.
According to CIA World Factbook, the border separating Monaco from France is 3.7 miles long, and it is defined legally. However, one would hardly realize they have crossed from one country to another. The border separating the two countries runs through the city, and it is possible to find a building in Monaco with parts if it is lying in France, and because of this random borderline, the official borders does not exist in reality. The theoretical borderline is not enforced, and there are no customs stations, and they are visibly marked throughout the city. There is a road sign marking the entrance to Monaco and a carved rock, which only serve to invite visitors to the principality of Monaco. The two are only markers, and they stand without any border control or any form of enforcement.
Monaco's Relationship With France
Monaco and France share a special relationship, which dates back to the 15th century when Monaco gained independence from France in 1419. In 1512, Monaco signed a document which stipulated perpetual reliance on France and in 1816 they signed a treaty that saw Monaco hand over the towns of Roquebrune and Menton to France for full independence from France. In 1919 after the WWI, the treaty of Versailles saw Monaco placed under the limited protection of France. This special relationship has continued to the present day. Currently, Monaco has a separate foreign policy, but it relies on France on military responsibility, and Monaco has agreed to exercise sovereignty rights which conform to the interests of France. Monaco also has a small police force.
Dispute With France
In 1962, there was a dispute between Monaco and France when Monaco refused to impose a tax on its residents and international businesses. The disagreement was resolved when both countries agreed that French citizens who had lived in Monaco for less than five years and companies with more than 25% of their businesses out of the country would be taxed at French rates.
Monaco's External Relations
Monaco is one of the oldest countries, and it has outlived several institutions and countries it had relations with in the past. The global community recognizes Monaco’s independence.The United States has a Consul General located in Marseilles, France, and the first Consul to the US from Monaco was Louis Borg, who presented his credentials in May 1866. There are two embassies in Monaco which belong to France and Italy and about 30 consulates. Monaco has embassies in several countries around the world such as Spain, Germany, Switzerland, UK, and Italy among others.