A peaceful political situation
In 1949, then-president José Figueres Ferrer abolished the country's army. In fact, he was the first president in the world to do so. Since then, Costa Rica has maintained only a small number of law enforcement guards for internal security reasons.
At present, the total population of Costa Rica is 4,300,000, with roughly one quarter living in the capital city of San José. Costa Rica is home to the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the United Nations University of Peace, both based in San José. Tourism - particularly from Europe, Canada and the United States - now accounts for a vast part of Costa Rica's Gross Domestic Product.