The costa (coast), to the west, is a narrow plain, largely arid except for valleys created by seasonal rivers. The sierra (highlands) is the region of the Andes; it includes the Altiplano plateau as well as the highest peak of the country, the 6,768 m (22,205 ft) Huascarán. The third region is the selva (jungle), a wide expanse of flat terrain covered by the Amazon rainforest that extends east. Almost 60 percent of the country’s area is located within this region.
Most Peruvian rivers originate in the peaks of the Andes and drain into one of three basins. Those that drain toward the Pacific Ocean are steep and short, flowing only intermittently. Tributaries of the Amazon River have a much larger flow, and are longer and less steep once they exit the sierra. Rivers that drain into Lake Titicaca are generally short and have a large flow. Peru’s longest rivers are the Ucayali, the Marañón, the Putumayo, the Yavarí, the Huallaga, the Urubamba, the Mantaro, and the Amazon.
The largest lake in Peru, Lake Titicaca between Peru and Bolivia high in the Andes, is also the largest of South America. The largest reservoirs, all in the coastal region of Peru, are the Poechos, Tinajones, San Lorenzo, and El Fraile reservoirs.
Historically, the country’s economic performance has been tied to exports, which provide hard currency to finance imports and external debt payments. Although they have provided substantial revenue, self-sustained growth and a more egalitarian distribution of income have proven elusive. According to 2015 data, 19.3% of its total population is poor, including 9% that lives in extreme poverty.
Services account for 53% of Peruvian gross domestic product, followed by manufacturing (22.3%), extractive industries (15%), and taxes (9.7%). Recent economic growth has been fueled by macroeconomic stability, improved terms of trade, and rising investment and consumption. Trade is expected to increase further after the implementation of a free trade agreement with the United States signed on 12 April 2006. Peru’s main exports are copper, gold, zinc, textiles, and fish meal; its major trade partners are the United States, China, Brazil, and Chile.
There are two unconnected principal railways in Peru.
The Ferrocarriles del Sur del Perú (FCS), now operated by PeruRail, runs from the coast at Matarani to Cuzco, and to Puno on Lake Titicaca. From Cuzco, PeruRail runs the 914 mm (3 ft) gauge line to Aguas Calientes for Machu Picchu.
Lima has a metro service or Lima Metro, also called Tren eléctrico that has now only one line (called Linea 1). The line has an extension of 34.6 km. with 26 stations, and goes from the south east to north east Lima urban districts passing downtown (This is Villa El Salvador to San Juan de Lurigancho). The second line (called Linea 2) is now under construction and will run from the port of Callao to Ate passing downtown too (west to east).