Games: Facts of the week

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The Independent Online
I have been intrigued this week by an unpretentious little book from The Economist entitled "Pocket World in Figures". With pages about 19cm high by 9cm wide, it really will fit into the average pocket. It contains all the stuff you would expect to find in such a book: populations, GDPs, principal exports, imports exchange rates and energy consumption for every country, but also includes nearly 100 slim pages of tables ranging from the countries with the highest divorce rates to those who spend the most on recorded music.

Here are just a few of the things I have learnt:

The country with the highest rate of serious assualts per head of population is Swaziland.

Belgium generates more nitrous oxide per head of population than anywhere else.

The highest fertility rate among women is to be found on the West Bank and Gaza.

The Norwegians top the league of book-buyers, spending $137 a year per head.

Although the Czechs drink the most beer and the French the most wine, Luxemburgers imbibe most alcohol altogether.

There are 8.3 people in the average household in Gabon.

Qatar has the lowest marriage rate in the world.

Guatemala and Nicaragua share the lowest divorce rate.

There are 197.7 men per 100 women in Qatar.

There are 85.1 men per 100 women in Latvia.

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