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Mozambique

Mozambique

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Population: 20,366,795 (est.)

Language(s): Portuguese

Capital: Maputo

Interesting Facts:

  • The official currency is the Mozambican metical.
  • According to the most recent census, 56.1% of the population of Mozambique were Christian, 17.9% were Muslim, 18.7% had no religion and 7.3% adhered to other beliefs.
  • Lake Niassa in Mozambique makes is one of the largest lakes in the continent of Africa.
  • Mozambique is prone to severe droughts, destructive cyclones and floods that hit the country’s central and southern provinces.
  • Mozambique Island, a comparatively small island off the coast of Mozambique, is a World Heritage Site.
  • The economy of Mozambique has developed since the end of the Mozambican Civil War (1977–1992), but the country is still one of the world’s poorest and most underdeveloped.
  • Agriculture is the mainstay of the economy and the country has a great potential for growth in the sector. Agriculture employs more than 80 percent of the labour force and provides livelihoods to the vast majority of over 23 million inhabitants.
  • Mozambique is a multi-party democracy under the 1990 constitution.
  • Mozambique has a tropical climate with two seasons, a wet season from October to March and a dry season from April to September.

Mozambique, officially the Republic of Mozambique, is a country in Southeast Africa bordered by the Indian Ocean to the east, Tanzania to the north, Malawi and Zambia to the northwest, Zimbabwe to the west and Swaziland and South Africa to the southwest. The capital city is Maputo, (known as Lourenço Marques before Independence).

Between the 1st and 5th centuries AD, Bantu-speaking peoples migrated from farther north and west. Swahili, and later also Arab, commercial ports existed along the coasts until the arrival of Europeans. The area was explored by Vasco da Gama in 1498 and colonized by Portugal in 1505. Mozambique became independent in 1975, and became the People’s Republic of Mozambique shortly thereafter. It was the scene of an intense civil war lasting from 1977 to 1992.

Mozambique is endowed with rich and extensive natural resources. The country’s economy is based largely on agriculture, but with industry, mainly food and beverages, chemical manufacturing, aluminium and petroleum production, is growing fast. The country’s tourism sector is also growing. South Africa is Mozambique’s main trading partner and source of foreign direct investment. Portugal, Spain and Belgium are also among the country’s most important partners. Since 2001, Mozambique’s annual average GDP growth has been among the world’s top ten. It still has, however, one of the lowest GDP per capita, one of the worst human development index and inequality ratings and one of the world’s worst average life expectancies.

The only official language of Mozambique is Portuguese, with roughly half of the population speaking it as a second language and few as a first language. Languages widely spoken natively include Swahili, Makhuwa, and Sena. The largest religion in Mozambique is Christianity, with significant Muslim and African traditional religious minorities. Mozambique is a member of the African Union, Commonwealth of Nations, the Community of Portuguese Language Countries, the Latin Union, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation and Southern African Development Community.

Source: Wikipedia

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