The Independent Republic of Antarctica is a country situated on the continent of Antarctica. It operates as a republic, and as such, it allows free enterprise, free elections, and freedom of speech and religion. Antarctica is a fairly western country, as it has decent relations with the European Union, Australia, Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom, although it also maintains good relations with Eastern countries, namely Indonesia, the Philippines, China, Japan, and Korea. Antarctica has a fairly large GDP and military for its age, and is considered a regional power, having a fair amount of influence in much of the Southern Hemisphere. Antarctica is also considered a very developed and modern country, as many cities in Antarctica are equipped with advanced heat shields, allowing for comfortable living in otherwise inhospitable land.