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 for Congo, Democratic Republic of the
From CIA World Factbook 2002 :

  Congo, Democratic Republic of the
     Introduction Congo, Democratic Republic of the
                              Background: Since 1997 the Democratic Republic
                                          of the Congo (DROC; formerly called
                                          Zaire) has been rent by ethnic
                                          strife and civil war, touched off by
                                          a massive inflow in 1994 of refugees
                                          from the fighting in Rwanda and
                                          Burundi. The government of former
                                          president MOBUTU Sese Seko was
                                          toppled by a rebellion led by
                                          Laurent KABILA in May 1997; his
                                          regime was subsequently challenged
                                          by a Rwanda- and Uganda-backed
                                          rebellion in August 1998. Troops
                                          from Zimbabwe, Angola, Namibia,
                                          Chad, and Sudan intervened to
                                          support the Kinshasa regime. A
                                          cease-fire was signed on 10 July
                                          1999 by the DROC, Zimbabwe, Angola,
                                          Uganda, Namibia, Rwanda, and
                                          Congolese armed rebel groups RCD-
                                          G and MLC, but sporadic fighting
                                          continued. KABILA was assassinated
                                          on 16 January 2001 and his son
                                          Joseph KABILA was named head of
                                          state on 26 January 2001. Despite
                                          taking a radically different
                                          approach than his father, the new
                                          president has been equally
                                          unsuccessful in ending the war.
     Geography Congo, Democratic Republic of the
                                Location: Central Africa, northeast of Angola
                  Geographic coordinates: 0 00 N, 25 00 E
                          Map references: Africa
                                    Area: total: 2,345,410 sq km
                                          water: 77,810 sq km
                                          land: 2,267,600 sq km
                      Area - comparative: slightly less than one-fourth the
                                          size of the US
                         Land boundaries: total: 10,744 km
                                          border countries: Angola 2,511 km
                                          (of which 225 km is the boundary of
                                          Angola's discontiguous Cabinda
                                          Province), Burundi 233 km, Central
                                          African Republic 1,577 km, Republic
                                          of the Congo 2,410 km, Rwanda 217
                                          km, Sudan 628 km, Tanzania 473 km,
                                          Uganda 765 km, Zambia 1,930 km
                               Coastline: 37 km
                         Maritime claims: exclusive economic zone: boundaries
                                          with neighbors
                                          territorial sea: 12 NM
                                 Climate: tropical; hot and humid in
                                          equatorial river basin; cooler and
                                          drier in southern highlands; cooler
                                          and wetter in eastern highlands;
                                          north of Equator - wet season April
                                          to October, dry season December to
                                          February; south of Equator - wet
                                          season November to March, dry season
                                          April to October
                                 Terrain: vast central basin is a low-lying
                                          plateau; mountains in east
                      Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
                                          highest point: Pic Marguerite on
                                          Mont Ngaliema (Mount Stanley) 5,110
                       Natural resources: cobalt, copper, cadmium, petroleum,
                                          industrial and gem diamonds, gold,
                                          silver, zinc, manganese, tin,
                                          germanium, uranium, radium, bauxite,
                                          iron ore, coal, hydropower, timber
                                Land use: arable land: 2.96%
                                          permanent crops: 0.52%
                                          other: 96.52% (1998 est.)
                          Irrigated land: 110 sq km (1998 est.)
                         Natural hazards: periodic droughts in south; Congo
                                          River floods (seasonal); in the
                                          east, in the Great Rift Valley,
                                          there are active volcanoes
            Environment - current issues: poaching threatens wildlife
                                          populations; water pollution;
                                          deforestation; refugees responsible
                                          for significant deforestation, soil
                                          erosion, and wildlife poaching;
                                          mining of minerals (coltan - a
                                          mineral used in creating capacitors,
                                          diamonds, and gold) causing
                                          environmental damage
              Environment - international party to: Biodiversity, Climate
                              agreements: Change, Desertification, Endangered
                                          Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of
                                          the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear
                                          Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection,
                                          Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber
                                          94, Wetlands
                                          signed, but not ratified:
                                          Environmental Modification
                        Geography - note: straddles Equator; has very narrow
                                          strip of land that controls the
                                          lower Congo River and is only outlet
                                          to South Atlantic Ocean; dense
                                          tropical rain forest in central
                                          river basin and eastern highlands
     People Congo, Democratic Republic of the
                              Population: 55,225,478
                                          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 2002 est.)
                           Age structure: 0-14 years: 48.2% (male 13,369,493;
                                          female 13,256,174)
                                          15-64 years: 49.3% (male 13,343,303;
                                          female 13,860,996)
                                          65 years and over: 2.5% (male
                                          581,568; female 813,944) (2002 est.)
                  Population growth rate: 2.79% (2002 est.)
                              Birth rate: 45.55 births/1,000 population (2002
                              Death rate: 14.93 deaths/1,000 population (2002
                      Net migration rate: -2.75 migrant(s)/1,000 population
                                          note: one million refugees fled into
                                          Zaire (now called the Democratic
                                          Republic of the Congo or DROC) in
                                          1994 as a result of the ethnic
                                          fighting in Rwanda; fighting in the
                                          DROC between rebels and government
                                          forces in October 1996 caused
                                          875,000 refugees to return to Rwanda
                                          in late 1996 and early 1997 and
                                          additional refugees have returned in
                                          subsequent years; fighting between
                                          the Congolese government and Uganda-
                                          and Rwanda-backed Congolese rebels
                                          spawned a regional war in DROC in
                                          August 1998, which left 1.8 million
                                          Congolese displaced in DROC and
                                          caused 300,000 Congolese refugees to
                                          flee to surrounding countries (2002
                               Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
                                          under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
                                          15-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female
                                          65 years and over: 0.71 male(s)/
                                          total population: 0.98 male(s)/
                                          female (2002 est.)
                   Infant mortality rate: 98.05 deaths/1,000 live births (2002
                Life expectancy at birth: total population: 49.13 years
                                          female: 51.13 years (2002 est.)
                                          male: 47.19 years
                    Total fertility rate: 6.77 children born/woman (2002 est.)
        HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 5.07% (1999 est.)
       HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/ 1.1 million (1999 est.)
                       HIV/AIDS - deaths: 95,000 (1999 est.)
                             Nationality: noun: Congolese (singular and
                                          adjective: Congolese or Congo
                           Ethnic groups: over 200 African ethnic groups of
                                          which the majority are Bantu; the
                                          four largest tribes - Mongo, Luba,
                                          Kongo (all Bantu), and the Mangbetu-
                                          Azande (Hamitic) make up about 45%
                                          of the population
                               Religions: Roman Catholic 50%, Protestant 20%,
                                          Kimbanguist 10%, Muslim 10%, other
                                          syncretic sects and indigenous
                                          beliefs 10%
                               Languages: French (official), Lingala (a lingua
                                          franca trade language), Kingwana (a
                                          dialect of Kiswahili or Swahili),
                                          Kikongo, Tshiluba
                                Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read
                                          and write French, Lingala, Kingwana,
                                          or Tshiluba
                                          total population: 77.3%
                                          male: 86.6%
                                          female: 67.7% (1995 est.)
     Government Congo, Democratic Republic of the
                            Country name: conventional long form: Democratic
                                          Republic of the Congo
                                          conventional short form: none
                                          local short form: none
                                          former: Congo Free State, Belgian
                                          Congo, Congo/Leopoldville, Congo/
                                          Kinshasa, Zaire
                                          local long form: Republique
                                          Democratique du Congo
                                          abbreviation: DROC
                         Government type: dictatorship; presumably undergoing
                                          a transition to representative
                                 Capital: Kinshasa
                Administrative divisions: 10 provinces (provinces, singular -
                                          province) and one city* (ville);
                                          Bandundu, Bas-Congo, Equateur,
                                          Kasai-Occidental, Kasai-Oriental,
                                          Katanga, Kinshasa*, Maniema, Nord-
                                          Kivu, Orientale, Sud-Kivu
                            Independence: 30 June 1960 (from Belgium)
                        National holiday: Independence Day, 30 June (1960)
                            Constitution: 24 June 1967, amended August 1974,
                                          revised 15 February 1978, amended
                                          April 1990; transitional
                                          constitution promulgated in April
                                          1994; in November 1998, a draft
                                          constitution was approved by former
                                          President Laurent KABILA but it was
                                          not ratified by a national
                                          referendum; one outcome of the
                                          ongoing inter-Congolese dialogue is
                                          to be a new constitution
                            Legal system: based on Belgian civil law system
                                          and tribal law; has not accepted
                                          compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
                                Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and
                        Executive branch: chief of state: President Joseph
                                          KABILA (since 26 January 2001); note
                                          - following the assassination of his
                                          father, Laurent Desire KABILA, on 16
                                          January 2001, Joseph KABILA
                                          succeeded to the presidency; the
                                          president is both the chief of state
                                          and head of government
                                          head of government: President Joseph
                                          KABILA (since 26 January 2001); note
                                          - following the assassination of his
                                          father, Laurent Desire KABILA, on 16
                                          January 2001, Joseph KABILA
                                          succeeded to the presidency; the
                                          president is both the chief of state
                                          and head of government
                                          cabinet: National Executive Council,
                                          appointed by the president
                                          elections: before Laurent Desire
                                          KABILA seized power on 16 May 1997,
                                          the president was elected by popular
                                          vote for a seven-year term; election
                                          last held 29 July 1984 (next was
                                          scheduled to be held in May 1997);
                                          formerly, there was also a prime
                                          minister who was elected by the High
                                          Council of the Republic; note -
                                          elections were not held in 1991 as
                                          called for by the constitution
                                          note: Marshal MOBUTU Sese Seko Kuku
                                          Ngbendu wa Za Banga was president
                                          from 24 November 1965 until forced
                                          into exile on 16 May 1997 when his
                                          government was overthrown militarily
                                          by Laurent Desire KABILA; KABILA
                                          immediately assumed governing
                                          authority and pledged to hold
                                          elections by April 1999, but, in
                                          December 1998, announced that
                                          elections would be postponed until
                                          all foreign military forces
                                          attempting to topple the government
                                          had withdrawn from the country;
                                          KABILA was assassinated in January
                                          2001 and was succeeded by his son
                                          Joseph KABILA
                                          election results: results of the
                                          last election were: MOBUTU Sese Seko
                                          Kuku Ngbendu wa Za Banga reelected
                                          president in 1984 without opposition
                      Legislative branch: a 300-member Transitional
                                          Constituent Assembly established in
                                          August 2000
                                          elections: NA; members of the
                                          Transitional Constituent Assembly
                                          were appointed by former President
                                          Laurent Desire KABILA
                         Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Cour Supreme
           Political parties and leaders: Democratic Social Christian Party or
                                          PDSC [Andre BO-BOLIKO]; Forces for
                                          Renovation for Union and Solidarity
                                          or FONUS [Joseph OLENGHANKOY];
                                          National Congolese Lumumbist
                                          Movement or MNC [Francois LUMUMBA];
                                          Popular Movement of the Revolution
                                          or MPR [three factions: MPR-Fait
                                          Prive (Catherine NZUZI wa Mbombo);
                                          MPR/Vunduawe (Felix VUNDUAWE); MPR/
                                          Mananga (MANANGA Dintoka Mpholo)];
                                          Unified Lumumbast Party or PALU
                                          [Antoine GIZENGA]; Union for
                                          Democracy and Social Progress or
                                          UDPS [Etienne TSHISEKEDI wa
                                          Mulumba]; Union of Federalists and
                                          Independent Republicans or UFERI
                                          [two factions: UFERI (Lokambo
                                          OMOKOKO); UFERI/OR (Adolph Kishwe
            Political pressure groups and NA
               International organization ACCT, ACP, AfDB, CCC, CEEAC, CEPGL,
                           participation: ECA, FAO, G-19, G-24, G-77, IAEA,
                                          IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD,
                                          IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO,
                                          Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO
                                          (correspondent), ITU, NAM, OAU, OPCW
                                          (signatory), PCA, SADC, UN, UNCTAD,
                                          UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UPU, WCL,
                                          WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
     Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Faida
                                          FAX: [1] (202) 234-2609
                                          telephone: [1] (202) 234-7690, 7691
                                          chancery: 1800 New Hampshire Avenue
                                          NW, Washington, DC 20009
       Diplomatic representation from the chief of mission: Ambassador Aubrey
                                      US: HOOKS
                                          embassy: 310 Avenue des Aviateurs,
                                          mailing address: Unit 31550, APO AE
                                          telephone: [243] (12) 21804, 21807
                                          FAX: [243] (88) 43805
                        Flag description: light blue with a large yellow five-
                                          pointed star in the center and a
                                          columnar arrangement of six small
                                          yellow five-pointed stars along the
                                          hoist side
     Economy Congo, Democratic Republic of the
                      Economy - overview: The economy of the Democratic
                                          Republic of the Congo - a nation
                                          endowed with vast potential wealth -
                                          has declined drastically since the
                                          mid-1980s. The war, which began in
                                          August 1998, has dramatically
                                          reduced national output and
                                          government revenue and has increased
                                          external debt. Foreign businesses
                                          have curtailed operations due to
                                          uncertainty about the outcome of the
                                          conflict, lack of infrastructure,
                                          and the difficult operating
                                          environment. The war has intensified
                                          the impact of such basic problems as
                                          an uncertain legal framework,
                                          corruption, raging inflation, and
                                          lack of openness in government
                                          economic policy and financial
                                          operations. A number of IMF and
                                          World Bank missions have met with
                                          the government to help it develop a
                                          coherent economic plan, and
                                          President KABILA has begun
                                          implementing reforms.
                                     GDP: purchasing power parity - $32
                                          billion (2001 est.)
                  GDP - real growth rate: -4% (2001 est.)
                        GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $590 (2001
             GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 54%
                                          industry: 9%
                                          services: 37% (1999 est.)
           Population below poverty line: NA%
       Household income or consumption by lowest 10%: NA%
                        percentage share: highest 10%: NA%
        Inflation rate (consumer prices): 358% (2001 est.)
                             Labor force: 14.51 million (1993 est.)
             Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 65%, industry 16%,
                                          services 19% (1991 est.)
                       Unemployment rate: NA%
                                  Budget: revenues: $269 million
                                          expenditures: $244 million,
                                          including capital expenditures of
                                          $24 million (1996 est.)
                              Industries: mining (diamonds, copper, zinc),
                                          mineral processing, consumer
                                          products (including textiles,
                                          footwear, cigarettes, processed
                                          foods and beverages), cement
       Industrial production growth rate: NA%
                Electricity - production: 5.268 billion kWh (1999)
      Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 2.05%
                                          hydro: 97.95%
                                          other: 0% (1999)
                                          nuclear: 0%
               Electricity - consumption: 4.55 billion kWh (1999)
                   Electricity - exports: 404 million kWh (1999)
                   Electricity - imports: 55 million kWh (1999)
                  Agriculture - products: coffee, sugar, palm oil, rubber,
                                          tea, quinine, cassava (tapioca),
                                          palm oil, bananas, root crops, corn,
                                          fruits; wood products
                                 Exports: $750 million (f.o.b., 2001 est.)
                   Exports - commodities: diamonds, copper, coffee, cobalt,
                                          crude oil
                      Exports - partners: Benelux 62%, US 18%, South Africa,
                                          Finland, Italy (1999)
                                 Imports: $1.024 billion (f.o.b., 2001 est.)
                   Imports - commodities: foodstuffs, mining and other
                                          machinery, transport equipment,
                      Imports - partners: South Africa 28%, Benelux 14%,
                                          Nigeria 9%, Kenya 7%, China (1999)
                         Debt - external: $12.9 billion (2000 est.)
                Economic aid - recipient: $195.3 million (1995)
                                Currency: Congolese franc (CDF)
                           Currency code: CDF
                          Exchange rates: Congolese francs per US dollar - 305
                                          (January 2002), 21.82 (2000), 4.02
                                          (1999), 1.61 (1998), 1.31 (1997)
                                          note: on 30 June 1998 the Congolese
                                          franc was introduced, replacing the
                                          new zaire
                             Fiscal year: calendar year
     Communications Congo, Democratic Republic of the
          Telephones - main lines in use: 21,000 (1997)
            Telephones - mobile cellular: 15,000 (2000)
                        Telephone system: general assessment: poor
                                          domestic: barely adequate wire and
                                          microwave radio relay service in and
                                          between urban areas; domestic
                                          satellite system with 14 earth
                                          international: satellite earth
                                          station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic
                Radio broadcast stations: AM 3, FM 11, shortwave 2 (2001)
                                  Radios: 18.03 million (1997)
           Television broadcast stations: 4 (2001)
                             Televisions: 6.478 million (1997)
                   Internet country code: .cd
       Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 2 (2000)
                          Internet users: 1,500 (1999)
     Transportation Congo, Democratic Republic of the
                                Railways: total: 5,138 km
                                          narrow gauge: 3,987 km 1.067-m gauge
                                          (858 km electrified); 125 km 1.000-
                                          m gauge; 1,026 km 0.600-m gauge
                                          note: severely reduced route-
                                          distance in use because of damage to
                                          facilities by civil strife (2000
                                Highways: total: 157,000 km (including 30 km
                                          of expressways)(1996)
                                          paved: NA km
                                          unpaved: NA km
                               Waterways: 15,000 km (including the Congo and
                                          its tributaries, and unconnected
                               Pipelines: petroleum products 390 km
                       Ports and harbors: Banana, Boma, Bukavu, Bumba, Goma,
                                          Kalemie, Kindu, Kinshasa, Kisangani,
                                          Matadi, Mbandaka
                         Merchant marine: none (2002 est.)
                                Airports: 232 (2001)
           Airports - with paved runways: total: 24
                                          over 3,047 m: 4
                                          2,438 to 3,047 m: 3
                                          914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2001)
                                          1,524 to 2,437 m: 15
         Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 208
                                          1,524 to 2,437 m: 20
                                          914 to 1,523 m: 96
                                          under 914 m: 92 (2001)
                               Heliports: 1 (2001)
     Military Congo, Democratic Republic of the
                         Military branches: Army, Navy, Air Force, Special
                                            Security Battalion
          Military manpower - availability: males age 15-49: 11,996,175 (2002
       Military manpower - fit for military males age 15-49: 6,110,595 (2002
                                   service: est.)
             Military expenditures - dollar $250 million (FY97)
         Military expenditures - percent of 4.6% (FY97)
     Transnational Issues Congo, Democratic Republic of the
                Disputes - international: Democratic Republic of the Congo is
                                          in the grip of a civil war that has
                                          drawn in military forces from
                                          neighboring states, with Uganda and
                                          Rwanda supporting the rebel
                                          movements that occupy much of the
                                          eastern portion of the state; Tutsi,
                                          Hutu, and other conflicting ethnic
                                          groups, political rebels, and
                                          various government forces continue
                                          fighting in Great Lakes region,
                                          transcending the boundaries of
                                          Burundi, Democratic Republic of the
                                          Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda; most of
                                          the Congo River boundary with the
                                          Republic of the Congo is indefinite
                                          (no agreement has been reached on
                                          the division of the river or its
                                          islands, except in the Pool Malebo/
                                          Stanley Pool area)
                           Illicit drugs: illicit producer of cannabis, mostly
                                          for domestic consumption

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