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Map of Namibia

DefinitionDefinition Field ListingField Listing Rank OrderRank Order
   Introduction    Namibia
Background:
Definition Field Listing
South Africa occupied the German colony of South-West Africa during World War I and administered it as a mandate until after World War II, when it annexed the territory. In 1966 the Marxist South-West Africa People's Organization (SWAPO) guerrilla group launched a war of independence for the area that was soon named Namibia, but it was not until 1988 that South Africa agreed to end its administration in accordance with a UN peace plan for the entire region. Independence came in 1990 following multi-party elections and the establishment of a constitution. President NUJOMA is currently serving his third term as president.

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   Geography    Namibia
Location:
Definition Field Listing
Southern Africa, bordering the South Atlantic Ocean, between Angola and South Africa
Geographic coordinates:
Definition Field Listing
22 00 S, 17 00 E
Map references:
Definition Field Listing
Africa
Area:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 825,418 sq km
land: 825,418 sq km
water: 0 sq km
Area - comparative:
Definition Field Listing
slightly more than half the size of Alaska
Land boundaries:
Definition Field Listing
total: 3,936 km
border countries: Angola 1,376 km, Botswana 1,360 km, South Africa 967 km, Zambia 233 km
Coastline:
Definition Field Listing
1,572 km
Maritime claims:
Definition Field Listing
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climate:
Definition Field Listing
desert; hot, dry; rainfall sparse and erratic
Terrain:
Definition Field Listing
mostly high plateau; Namib Desert along coast; Kalahari Desert in east
Elevation extremes:
Definition Field Listing
lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Konigstein 2,606 m
Natural resources:
Definition Field Listing
diamonds, copper, uranium, gold, lead, tin, lithium, cadmium, zinc, salt, vanadium, natural gas, hydropower, fish
note: suspected deposits of oil, coal, and iron ore
Land use:
Definition Field Listing
arable land: 0.99%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 99.01% (2001)
Irrigated land:
Definition Field Listing
70 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
Definition Field Listing
prolonged periods of drought
Environment - current issues:
Definition Field Listing
very limited natural fresh water resources; desertification; wildlife poaching; land degradation has led to few conservation areas
Environment - international agreements:
Definition Field Listing
party to: Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note:
Definition Field Listing
first country in the world to incorporate the protection of the environment into its constitution; some 14% of the land is protected, including virtually the entire Namib Desert coastal strip

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   People    Namibia
Population:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
1,954,033
note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2004 est.)
Age structure:
Definition Field Listing
0-14 years: 42.4% (male 419,700; female 409,156)
15-64 years: 54% (male 527,553; female 528,386)
65 years and over: 3.5% (male 30,427; female 38,811) (2004 est.)
Median age:
Definition Field Listing
total: 18.3 years
male: 18 years
female: 18.6 years (2004 est.)
Population growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
1.25% (2004 est.)
Birth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
33.51 births/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Death rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
21.02 deaths/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Net migration rate:
Definition Field Listing
0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Sex ratio:
Definition Field Listing
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/female
total population: 1 male(s)/female (2004 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 69.58 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 72.65 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 66.43 deaths/1,000 live births (2004 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total population: 40.53 years
male: 42.36 years
female: 38.64 years (2004 est.)
Total fertility rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
4.65 children born/woman (2004 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
21.3% (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
210,000 (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
16,000 (2003 est.)
Nationality:
Definition Field Listing
noun: Namibian(s)
adjective: Namibian
Ethnic groups:
Definition Field Listing
black 87.5%, white 6%, mixed 6.5%
note: about 50% of the population belong to the Ovambo tribe and 9% to the Kavangos tribe; other ethnic groups are: Herero 7%, Damara 7%, Nama 5%, Caprivian 4%, Bushmen 3%, Baster 2%, Tswana 0.5%
Religions:
Definition Field Listing
Christian 80% to 90% (Lutheran 50% at least), indigenous beliefs 10% to 20%
Languages:
Definition Field Listing
English 7% (official), Afrikaans common language of most of the population and about 60% of the white population, German 32%, indigenous languages: Oshivambo, Herero, Nama
Literacy:
Definition Field Listing
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 84%
male: 84.4%
female: 83.7% (2003 est.)

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   Government    Namibia
Country name:
Definition Field Listing
conventional long form: Republic of Namibia
conventional short form: Namibia
former: German Southwest Africa, South-West Africa
Government type:
Definition Field Listing
republic
Capital:
Definition Field Listing
Windhoek
Administrative divisions:
Definition Field Listing
13 regions; Caprivi, Erongo, Hardap, Karas, Khomas, Kunene, Ohangwena, Okavango, Omaheke, Omusati, Oshana, Oshikoto, Otjozondjupa
Independence:
Definition Field Listing
21 March 1990 (from South African mandate)
National holiday:
Definition Field Listing
Independence Day, 21 March (1990)
Constitution:
Definition Field Listing
ratified 9 February 1990; effective 12 March 1990
Legal system:
Definition Field Listing
based on Roman-Dutch law and 1990 constitution
Suffrage:
Definition Field Listing
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
Definition Field Listing
chief of state: President Sam Shafishuna NUJOMA (since 21 March 1990)
head of government: Prime Minister Theo-Ben GURIRAB (since 28 August 2002)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president from among the members of the National Assembly
elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; election last held 30 November-1 December 1999 (next to be held NA November 2004)
election results: Sam Shafishuna NUJOMA elected president; percent of vote - Sam Shafishuna NUJOMA 77%
Legislative branch:
Definition Field Listing
bicameral legislature consists of the National Council (26 seats; two members are chosen from each regional council to serve six-year terms) and the National Assembly (72 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections: National Council - elections for regional councils, to determine members of the National Council, held 30 November-1 December 1998 (next to be held NA November 2004); National Assembly - last held 30 November-1 December 1999 (next to be held NA November 2004)
election results: National Council - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - SWAPO 21, DTA 4, UDF 1; National Assembly - percent of vote by party - SWAPO 76%, COD 10%, DTA 9%, UDF 3%, MAG 1%, other 1%; seats by party - SWAPO 55, COD 7, DTA 7, UDF 2, MAG 1
note: the National Council is primarily an advisory body
Judicial branch:
Definition Field Listing
Supreme Court (judges appointed by the president on the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission)
Political parties and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
Congress of Democrats or COD [Ben ULENGA]; Democratic Turnhalle Alliance of Namibia or DTA [Katuutire KAURA, president]; Monitor Action Group or MAG [Kosie PRETORIUS]; South West Africa People's Organization or SWAPO [Sam Shafishuna NUJOMA]; United Democratic Front or UDF [Justus GAROEB]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
NA
International organization participation:
Definition Field Listing
ACP, AfDB, AU, C, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO (correspondent), ITU, NAM, OPCW, SACU, SADC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMEE, UNMIL, UPU, WCL, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
Diplomatic representation in the US:
Definition Field Listing
chief of mission: Ambassador Leonard Nangolo IIPUMBU
chancery: 1605 New Hampshire Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20009
telephone: [1] (202) 986-0540
FAX: [1] (202) 986-0443
Diplomatic representation from the US:
Definition Field Listing
chief of mission: Ambassador Kevin J. McGUIRE
embassy: Ausplan Building, 14 Lossen Street, Windhoek
mailing address: Private Bag 12029 Ausspannplatz, Windhoek
telephone: [264] (61) 221601
FAX: [264] (61) 229792
Flag description:
Definition Field Listing
a large blue triangle with a yellow sunburst fills the upper left section and an equal green triangle (solid) fills the lower right section; the triangles are separated by a red stripe that is contrasted by two narrow white-edge borders

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   Economy    Namibia
Economy - overview:
Definition Field Listing
The economy is heavily dependent on the extraction and processing of minerals for export. Mining accounts for 20% of GDP. Rich alluvial diamond deposits make Namibia a primary source for gem-quality diamonds. Namibia is the fourth-largest exporter of nonfuel minerals in Africa, the world's fifth-largest producer of uranium, and the producer of large quantities of lead, zinc, tin, silver, and tungsten. The mining sector employs only about 3% of the population while about half of the population depends on subsistence agriculture for its livelihood. Namibia normally imports about 50% of its cereal requirements; in drought years food shortages are a major problem in rural areas. A high per capita GDP, relative to the region, hides the great inequality of income distribution; nearly one-third of Namibians had annual incomes of less than $1,400 in constant 1994 dollars, according to a 1993 study. The Namibian economy is closely linked to South Africa with the Namibian dollar pegged to the South African rand. Privatization of several enterprises in coming years may stimulate long-run foreign investment. Mining of zinc, copper, and silver and increased fish production led growth in 2003.
GDP:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
purchasing power parity - $13.85 billion (2003 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
3.3% (2003 est.)
GDP - per capita:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
purchasing power parity - $7,200 (2003 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture: 11.5%
industry: 29.8%
services: 58.7% (2003 est.)
Investment (gross fixed):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
19.8% of GDP (2003)
Population below poverty line:
Definition Field Listing
50% (2002 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
Definition Field Listing
lowest 10%: NA
highest 10%: NA
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
Definition Field Listing
70 (2003)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
7.3% (2003)
Labor force:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
760,000 (2003)
Labor force - by occupation:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture 47%, industry 20%, services 33% (1999 est.)
Unemployment rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
35% (1998)
Budget:
Definition Field Listing
revenues: $1.434 billion
expenditures: $1.62 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2003)
Public debt:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
35.6% of GDP (2003)
Agriculture - products:
Definition Field Listing
millet, sorghum, peanuts; livestock; fish
Industries:
Definition Field Listing
meatpacking, fish processing, dairy products; mining (diamond, lead, zinc, tin, silver, tungsten, uranium, copper)
Industrial production growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
Electricity - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
26.95 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
603.1 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports:
Definition Field Listing
0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports:
Definition Field Listing
578 million kWh; note - electricity supplied by South Africa (2001)
Oil - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
13,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - exports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA (2001)
Oil - imports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA (2001)
Oil - proved reserves:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 bbl (1 January 2002)
Natural gas - proved reserves:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
31.15 billion cu m (1 January 2002)
Current account balance:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$123 million (2003)
Exports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$1.09 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Exports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
diamonds, copper, gold, zinc, lead, uranium; cattle, processed fish, karakul skins
Exports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
EU 79%, US 4% (2001)
Imports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$1.371 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Imports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
foodstuffs; petroleum products and fuel, machinery and equipment, chemicals
Imports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
US 50%, EU 31% (2001)
Reserves of foreign exchange & gold:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$325.2 million (2003)
Debt - external:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$1.04 billion (2003 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
Definition Field Listing
ODA $160 million (2000 est.)
Currency:
Definition Field Listing
Namibian dollar (NAD); South African rand (ZAR)
Currency code:
Definition Field Listing
NAD; ZAR
Exchange rates:
Definition Field Listing
Namibian dollars per US dollar - 7.5648 (2003), 10.5407 (2002), 8.6092 (2001), 6.9398 (2000), 6.1095 (1999)
Fiscal year:
Definition Field Listing
1 April - 31 March

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   Communications    Namibia
Telephones - main lines in use:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
127,400 (2003)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
223,700 (2003)
Telephone system:
Definition Field Listing
general assessment: good system; about 6 telephones for each 100 persons
domestic: good urban services; fair rural service; microwave radio relay links major towns; connections to other populated places are by open wire; 100% digital
international: country code - 264; fiber-optic cable to South Africa, microwave radio relay link to Botswana, direct links to other neighboring countries; connected to Africa ONE and South African Far East (SAFE) submarine cables through South Africa; satellite earth stations - 4 Intelsat (2002)
Radio broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
AM 2, FM 39, shortwave 4 (2001)
Television broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
8 (plus about 20 low-power repeaters) (1997)
Internet country code:
Definition Field Listing
.na
Internet hosts:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
3,164 (2003)
Internet users:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
65,000 (2003)

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   Transportation    Namibia
Railways:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 2,382 km
narrow gauge: 2,382 km 1.067-m gauge (2003)
Highways:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 66,467 km
paved: 9,172 km
unpaved: 57,285 km (2000)
Ports and harbors:
Definition Field Listing
Luderitz, Walvis Bay
Merchant marine:
Definition Field Listing
none
Airports:
Definition Field Listing
136 (2003 est.)
Airports - with paved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 21
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
1,524 to 2,437 m: 13
914 to 1,523 m: 4 (2003 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 115
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
1,524 to 2,437 m: 22
914 to 1,523 m: 71
under 914 m: 20 (2003 est.)

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   Military    Namibia
Military branches:
Definition Field Listing
Namibian Defense Force: Army (including Naval Wing, Air Wing), Police
Military manpower - availability:
Definition Field Listing
males age 15-49: 468,934 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service:
Definition Field Listing
males age 15-49: 279,755 (2004 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$111.6 million (2003)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
2.5% (2003)

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   Transnational Issues    Namibia
Disputes - international:
Definition Field Listing
commission established with Botswana to resolve small residual disputes along the Caprivi Strip, including the Situngu marshlands along the Linyanti River; Botswana residents protest Namibia's planned construction of the Okavango hydroelectric dam on Popa Falls; managed dispute with South Africa over the location of the boundary in the Orange River; Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe boundary convergence is not clearly defined or delimited; Angolan rebels and refugees still reside in Namibia

Large portions of this information is from the US government open source publication "The World Factbook", other content copyright © Stratus-Pikpuk, Inc. You may use this information without permission for educational or other non-profit purposes if you refer to us as the source, contact us if you want to use this commercially.


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