And before we deep dive into the United States business with his opportunities, it is important to get some understanding of the basic facts. The United States of America (commonly abbreviated as the USA or the U.S.) is a federal country situated in the continent of North America. It is the 4th largest country in the world with a geographical area of 3.8 million Square Miles. The United States is made up of 50 states, five self-governing territories, and several other territories.
The United States is the 3rd most populous country globally, with an estimated population of 328 million as of 2019. It is the world’s pulargest economy boasting a GDP of $20.8 trillion as of 2019. The national capital city of the United States is Washington, D.C., where both the white house and the bicameral parliamentary buildings are situated.
New York City is the headquarters of the United Nations. The United States is usually referred to as a haven of opportunities. It is also the most advanced country technologically and in the military.
There are 48 contiguous States in the U.S., which occupies 3,119,885 Square Miles, and the District of Columbia, which makes up about 83 percent of the USA land area. Canada borders the U.S. contiguous land on the north while Mexico borders it on the south. The U.S. coastline borders the Pacific Ocean to the west, the Gulf of Mexico to the southeast, and the Atlantic Ocean to the east.
In terms of geographical area, the largest state in the U.S. is the state of Alaska, which occupies 665,384 Square Miles. The smallest state is Rhode Island, which occupies 1,545 Square Miles. New York City is the largest city in terms of population, estimated at 18,804,000 people as of 2020.
Some key points to note about the United States of America are:
- It is located in North America
- It got its independence from Great Britain on 4th July 1776
- It is made up of 50 constituent states
- It is the 4th largest country in the world geographically and the 3rd most populous country in the world
- It is the world’s largest economy
- Its national capital city is Washington, D.C.
- New York City is the headquarters of the United Nations
- Both the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund headquarters are based in Washington, D.C., USA
- The United States Dollar is the official currency used in the U.S.
- Its national language is American English.
The States of the USA
The United States has 50 states, as mentioned earlier. These States have clearly defined jurisdiction and also share sovereignty with the federal national government. The States are sovereign in that they have their executive, legislature, and judiciary.
Each state is given electoral colleges that elect the president of the United States. The United States Congress has the powers to admit a new state into the union. Secession from the union cannot be done unilaterally as per the Supreme Court precedents.
The most populous state in the U.S. is California, with an estimated population of 39,512,223. The least populated state is the state of Wyoming, with an estimated population of 578,759. The largest state in terms of geographical area is Alaska. In contrast, the smallest state is Rhode Island, as mentioned earlier.
The people of the U.S.
The citizens of the United States are referred to as Americans. Citizenship is granted to all member states of the U.S., the District of Columbia, and all territories except American Samoa. The U.S. population is a diverse one. It comprises Latin Americans (73%), African Americans (13%), and Asian Americans. A good number of foreigners, immigrants, and refugees also reside in the United States.
Life Expectancy is at 78.6 years as of 2017 in the U.S. A good majority of Americans are residents of urban and suburban areas.
The U.S. doesn’t have an official language though American English is the national language. Other major languages taught and used in the U.S. are Spanish, French, German, Chinese, Japanese, and American sign language.
The U.S. has the largest Christian population globally, most of whom are of the Protestant denomination. The other religions in the U.S are Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism.
Education in the United States
The U.S. has a literacy level of 99.0% as of 2018. This is accounted for because most states require children between the ages of 7 to 18 to be in school. The U.S. expenditure on education is the highest worldwide.
The U.S. education sector is in the hands of both the private and public sectors. However, homeschooling is also allowed. Most of the highly ranked universities globally, such as Stafford University, Harvard University, and California Institute of Technology, are found in the United States.
The Climate of the United States
The enormous size of the U.S., its geographical features, and latitude changes account for the varying climatic conditions. For instance, the western side is mostly cold and semi-arid, the southwest is warmer, and the northern is humid. The states around the Gulf of Mexico are susceptible to hurricanes and tornadoes. Usually, the United States has the harshest climatic conditions in the world.
Culture in the United States
The U.S. is a cosmopolitan country and has variegated cultures drawn from all parts of the world. However, the western culture is the predominant culture and is drawn from Europe. Most of U.S. culture is founded on democracy, liberty, and equality. Americans are hospitable and charitable as they are the biggest donors to most countries and organizations.
The U.S. is rich in philosophy and literature; 13 of its citizens have won some noble literature prize. When it comes to music, U.S. genres are known and celebrated worldwide, ranging from pop music, jazz, rock, classical, and country music, to mention a few. The U.S. also controls the cinema arena — Hollywood tells it all.
Fast food is the most consumed type of food in the U.S., accounting for the rise of obesity in the USA. However, there are still people who value other types of homegrown food. The most popular sporting activities in the U.S. are American football, basketball, hockey, baseball, soccer, athletics, swimming, golf, volleyball, skateboarding, surfing, and snowboarding.
The government of the United States
The United States of America is a federation. It has three government levels: the federal government, state government, and local government.
The federal government is made of three arms; The Executive, the Legislature, and the Judiciary. In this case, the executive arm is headed by the President, who is elected by the Electoral College and vice president for four years. The President can only serve for two terms. He is the commander-in-chief of the armed forces, appoints and chairs the cabinet, and approves a bill into law.
The judiciary is headed by the Chief Justice, who is also the Supreme Court of the United States. There are other federal courts whose judges are appointed by the President upon approval of the Senate.
The Legislature is a bicameral Congress, composed of the Senate and the House of Representatives. Its functions are making federal law, declaring war, approving treaties, approving the budget, keeping checks, and holding unto account the executive arm.
Governors head the state government, and each state has its legislature and state courts with their laws. When it comes to defense, the U.S. military is the most advanced in the world and one of the strongest.
The United States Economy
The economy of the U.S. is the largest in terms of GDP and net worth in the world. It has an estimated GDP of $20.8 trillion as of 2020. When it comes to imports and exports, the US is the largest importer and 2nd largest exporter globally. It is known for massive and innovative manufacturing, being the second largest manufacturer globally — the largest trading nation is found here. The U.S. has the highest percentage of wealthy people, which means most people get their basic needs without a struggle.
The United States dollar is the most frequently used currency for international transactions and serves as the world’s reserve currency. A good number of countries use it as their official currency.
The diverse and stable economy is fueled by technology, profuse natural resources, highly developed infrastructure and superstructure, and high productivity. In fact, the United States is known for the high production of natural gas, petroleum, and petroleum products.
The top industries that fuel the U.S. economy are:
- The health sectors
- The service industry
Business Environment and culture in the United States of America
The United States is a business hub and a land of opportunity with every tool to facilitate entrepreneurship and create a favorable business environment. This statement can be supported by the fact that the country is safe, stable politically, abounding with resources, and provides a ready market from its large and wealthy population. Other benefits include the implementation of modern business approaches, availability of labor from the large population, and favorable government policies.
It Ranks 4 in Business
The United States is a capitalist country with a highly stable currency. It is also ranked fourth in the world as a country with ease while doing business. Both foreign and native Investors may explore promising sectors such as technology, real estate, manufacturing, agriculture, trade, tourism, and the entertainment industry. The bureaucracies of starting a business here are also easy and straightforward as long you maintain honesty and integrity in all your dealings.
In summary, the United States of America is a country in its league. It is a world-class and exquisite country worth exploring and experiencing as a local or foreign investor or even as a tourist. The most fantastic news about the United States is that it comes with a haven of opportunities, founded on liberty, equality, and equity.
And while you may have heard of some negatives such as racism, police brutality, or gun misuse, these are things that you can find in any other country. Such should never stop anyone from pushing for their dreams in any part of the world, especially in the United States. Now you know the basics, dive deeper into How to Start a Business in the USA as a Foreigner.