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Cape Verde / Cabo Verde

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Background:
The uninhabited islands were discovered and colonized by the Portuguese in the 15th century; Cape Verde subsequently became a trading center for African slaves and later an important coaling and resupply stop for whaling and transatlantic shipping. Following independence in 1975, and a tentative interest in unification with Guinea-Bissau, a one-party system was established and maintained until multi-party elections were held in 1990. Cape Verde continues to exhibit one of Africa's most stable democratic governments. Repeated droughts during the second half of the 20th century caused significant hardship and prompted heavy emigration. As a result, Cape Verde's expatriate population is greater than its domestic one. Most Cape Verdeans have both African and Portuguese antecedents.



Location:
Western Africa, group of islands in the North Atlantic Ocean, west of Senegal

Geographic coordinates:
16 00 N, 24 00 W

Map references:
Africa

Area:
total: 4,033 sq km
country comparison to the world: 175
land: 4,033 sq km
water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative:
slightly larger than Rhode Island

Land boundaries:
0 km

Coastline:
965 km

Maritime claims:
measured from claimed archipelagic baselines
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

Climate:
Current Weather
temperate; warm, dry summer; precipitation meager and erratic

Terrain:
steep, rugged, rocky, volcanic

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Mt. Fogo 2,829 m (a volcano on Fogo Island)

Natural resources:
salt, basalt rock, limestone, kaolin, fish, clay, gypsum

Land use:
arable land: 11.41%
permanent crops: 0.74%
other: 87.85% (2005)

Irrigated land:
30 sq km (2003)

Total renewable water resources:
0.3 cu km (1990)

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):
total: 0.02 cu km/yr (7%/2%/91%)
per capita: 39 cu m/yr (2000)

Natural hazards:
prolonged droughts; seasonal harmattan wind produces obscuring dust; volcanically and seismically active

Environment - current issues:
soil erosion; deforestation due to demand for wood used as fuel; water shortages; desertification; environmental damage has threatened several species of birds and reptiles; illegal beach sand extraction; overfishing

Environment - international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note:
strategic location 500 km from west coast of Africa near major north-south sea routes; important communications station; important sea and air refueling site



Population:
508,659 (July 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 169

Age structure:
0-14 years: 33.4% (male 85,285/female 84,464)
15-64 years: 61.1% (male 150,203/female 160,485)
65 years and over: 5.5% (male 10,699/female 17,523) (2010 est.)

Median age:
total: 22.3 years
male: 21.4 years
female: 23.1 years (2010 est.)

Population growth rate:
1.459% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 86

Birth rate:
21.67 births/1,000 population (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 84

Death rate:
6.41 deaths/1,000 population (July 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 155

Net migration rate:
-0.67 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 112

Urbanization:
urban population: 60% of total population (2008)
rate of urbanization: 3.5% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.94 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.61 male(s)/female
total population: 0.94 male(s)/female (2010 est.)

Infant mortality rate:
total: 27.89 deaths/1,000 live births
country comparison to the world: 78
male: 31.86 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 23.79 deaths/1,000 live births (2010 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 70.41 years
country comparison to the world: 146
male: 68.24 years
female: 72.64 years (2010 est.)

Total fertility rate:
2.54 children born/woman (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 88

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
0.04% (2001 est.)
country comparison to the world: 167

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
775 (2001)
country comparison to the world: 144

HIV/AIDS - deaths:
225 (as of 2001)
country comparison to the world: 103

Nationality:
noun: Cape Verdean(s)
adjective: Cape Verdean

Ethnic groups:
Creole (mulatto) 71%, African 28%, European 1%

Religions:
Roman Catholic (infused with indigenous beliefs), Protestant (mostly Church of the Nazarene)

Languages:
Portuguese, Crioulo (a blend of Portuguese and West African words)

Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 76.6%
male: 85.8%
female: 69.2% (2003 est.)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 12 years
male: 11 years
female: 12 years (2006)

Education expenditures:
6.3% of GDP (2006)
country comparison to the world: 34



Country name:
conventional long form: Republic of Cape Verde
conventional short form: Cape Verde
local long form: Republica de Cabo Verde
local short form: Cabo Verde

Government type:
republic

Capital:
name: Praia
geographic coordinates: 14 55 N, 23 31 W
time difference: UTC-1 (4 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions:
17 municipalities (concelhos, singular - concelho); Boa Vista, Brava, Maio, Mosteiros, Paul, Praia, Porto Novo, Ribeira Grande, Sal, Santa Catarina, Santa Cruz, Sao Domingos, Sao Filipe, Sao Miguel, Sao Nicolau, Sao Vicente, Tarrafal

Independence:
5 July 1975 (from Portugal)

National holiday:
Independence Day, 5 July (1975)

Constitution:
25 September 1992; a major revision on 23 November 1995 substantially increased the powers of the president; a 1999 revision created the position of national ombudsman (Provedor de Justica)

Legal system:
based on the legal system of Portugal; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
chief of state: President Pedro Verona Rodriques PIRES (since 22 March 2001)
head of government: Prime Minister Jose Maria Pereira NEVES (since 1 February 2001)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president on the recommendation of the prime minister
(For more information visit the World Leaders website )
elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 12 February 2006 (next to be held in February 2011); prime minister nominated by the National Assembly and appointed by the president
election results: Pedro PIRES reelected president; percent of vote - Pedro PIRES (PAICV) 51.2%, Carlos VIEGA (MPD) 48.8%

Legislative branch:
unicameral National Assembly or Assembleia Nacional (72 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections: last held on 22 January 2006 (next to be held in January 2011)
election results: percent of vote by party - PAICV 52.3%, MPD 44%, UCID 2.7%; seats by party - PAICV 41, MPD 29, UCID 2

Judicial branch:
Supreme Tribunal of Justice or Supremo Tribunal de Justia

Political parties and leaders:
African Party for Independence of Cape Verde or PAICV [Jose Maria Pereira NEVES, chairman]; Democratic and Independent Cape Verdean Union or UCID [Antonio MONTEIRO]; Democratic Christian Party or PDC [Manuel RODRIGUES]; Democratic Renovation Party or PRD [Victor FIDALGO]; Movement for Democracy or MPD [Jorge SANTOS]; Party for Democratic Convergence or PCD [Dr. Eurico MONTEIRO]; Party of Work and Solidarity or PTS [Isaias RODRIGUES]; Social Democratic Party or PSD [Joao ALEM]

Political pressure groups and leaders:
other: environmentalists; political pressure groups

International organization participation:
ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AOSIS, AU, CD, CPLP, ECOWAS, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt (signatory), ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NAM, OIF, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, Union Latina, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Fatima Lima VEIGA
chancery: 3415 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 965-6820
FAX: [1] (202) 965-1207
consulate(s) general: Boston

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Marianne M. MYLES
embassy: Rua Abilio Macedo n6, Praia
mailing address: C. P. 201, Praia
telephone: [238] 2-60-89-00
FAX: [238] 2-61-13-55

Flag description:
five unequal horizontal bands; the top-most band of blue - equal to one half the width of the flag - is followed by three bands of white, red, and white, each equal to 1/12 of the width, and a bottom stripe of blue equal to one quarter of the flag width; a circle of 10, yellow, five-pointed stars is centered on the red stripe and positioned 3/8 of the length of the flag from the hoist side; blue stands for the sea and the sky, the circle of stars represents the 10 major islands united into a nation, the stripes symbolize the road to formation of the country through peace (white) and effort (red)



Economy - overview:
This island economy suffers from a poor natural resource base, including serious water shortages exacerbated by cycles of long-term drought. The economy is service oriented with commerce, transport, tourism, and public services accounting for about three-fourths of GDP. Although nearly 70% of the population lives in rural areas, the share of food production in GDP is low. About 82% of food must be imported. The fishing potential, mostly lobster and tuna, is not fully exploited. Cape Verde annually runs a high trade deficit financed by foreign aid and remittances from emigrants; remittances supplement GDP by more than 20%. Economic reforms are aimed at developing the private sector and attracting foreign investment to diversify the economy. Future prospects depend heavily on the maintenance of aid flows, the encouragement of tourism, remittances, and the momentum of the government's development program. Cape Verde became a member of the WTO in July 2008.

GDP (purchasing power parity):
$1.7 billion (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 185
$1.67 billion (2008 est.)
$1.577 billion (2007 est.)
note: data are in 2009 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate):
$1.776 billion (2009 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:
1.8% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 83
5.9% (2008 est.)
7.8% (2007 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP):
$3,400 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 160
$3,400 (2008 est.)
$3,200 (2007 est.)
note: data are in 2009 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 9.1%
industry: 16.3%
services: 74.6% (2009 est.)

Labor force:
196,100 (2007)
country comparison to the world: 170

Unemployment rate:
21% (2000 est.)
country comparison to the world: 168

Population below poverty line:
30% (2000)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 1.9%
highest 10%: 40.6%

Investment (gross fixed):
34.9% of GDP (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 10

Budget:
revenues: $518.8 million
expenditures: $672.4 million (2009 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
1% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 44
6.8% (2008 est.)

Central bank discount rate:
7.5% (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 50
8.5% (31 December 2007)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:
9.99% (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 81
10.55% (31 December 2007)

Stock of money:
$563.4 million (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 127
$574 million (31 December 2007)

Stock of quasi money:
$721.3 million (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 129
$689 million (31 December 2007)

Stock of domestic credit:
$1.153 billion (31 December 2008)
country comparison to the world: 111
$1.049 billion (31 December 2007)

Agriculture - products:
bananas, corn, beans, sweet potatoes, sugarcane, coffee, peanuts; fish

Industries:
food and beverages, fish processing, shoes and garments, salt mining, ship repair

Industrial production growth rate:
1.5% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 59

Electricity - production:
250 million kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 173

Electricity - consumption:
232.5 million kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 173

Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2008 est.)

Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2008 est.)

Oil - production:
0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 199

Oil - consumption:
2,000 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 184

Oil - exports:
0 bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 145

Oil - imports:
1,619 bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 179

Oil - proved reserves:
0 bbl (1 January 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 195

Natural gas - production:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 189

Natural gas - consumption:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 201

Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 195

Natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 195

Natural gas - proved reserves:
0 cu m (1 January 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 194

Current account balance:
-$340 million (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 101
-$205.5 million (2008 est.)

Exports:
$106 million (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 190
$115.7 million (2008 est.)

Exports - commodities:
fuel, shoes, garments, fish, hides

Exports - partners:
Spain 53.98%, Portugal 22.23%, Morocco 7.13% (2009)

Imports:
$858 million (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 175
$830.7 million (2008 est.)

Imports - commodities:
foodstuffs, industrial products, transport equipment, fuels

Imports - partners:
Portugal 44.86%, Netherlands 15.51%, Spain 6.1%, Italy 4.46%, Brazil 4.21% (2009)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$294 million (31 December 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 145
$258 million (31 December 2008 est.)

Debt - external:
$325 million (2002)
country comparison to the world: 166

Exchange rates:
Cape Verdean escudos (CVE) per US dollar - 81.319 (2009), 73.84 (2008), 81.235 (2007), 87.946 (2006), 88.67 (2005)



Telephones - main lines in use:
72,000 (2008)
country comparison to the world: 155

Telephones - mobile cellular:
277,700 (2008)
country comparison to the world: 169

Telephone system:
general assessment: effective system, extensive modernization from 1996-2000 following partial privatization in 1995
domestic: major service provider is Cabo Verde Telecom (CVT); fiber-optic ring, completed in 2001, links all islands providing Internet access and ISDN services; cellular service introduced in 1998; broadband services launched in 2004
international: country code - 238; landing point for the Atlantis-2 fiber-optic transatlantic telephone cable that provides links to South America, Senegal, and Europe; HF radiotelephone to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2007)

Radio broadcast stations:
AM 0, FM 22 (plus 12 repeaters), shortwave 0 (2001)

Television broadcast stations:
1 (plus 7 repeaters) (2001)

Internet country code:
.cv

Internet hosts:
24 (2009)
country comparison to the world: 214

Internet users:
102,800 (2008)
country comparison to the world: 153



Airports:
10 (2009)
country comparison to the world: 156

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 9
over 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 3
under 914 m: 2 (2009)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 1
under 914 m: 1 (2009)

Roadways:
total: 1,350 km
country comparison to the world: 178
paved: 932 km
unpaved: 418 km (2000)

Merchant marine:
total: 8
country comparison to the world: 124
by type: cargo 2, chemical tanker 1, passenger/cargo 5
foreign-owned: 2 (Spain 1, UK 1) (2008)

Ports and terminals:
Porto Grande



Military branches:
People's Revolutionary Armed Forces (FARP): Army, Coast Guard (includes maritime air wing) (2007)

Military service age and obligation:
18 years of age (est.) for selective compulsory military service; 14-month conscript service obligation (2006)

Manpower available for military service:
males age 16-49: 128,858
females age 16-49: 133,581 (2010 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:
males age 16-49: 103,894
females age 16-49: 114,721 (2010 est.)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
male: 6,077
female: 6,075 (2010 est.)

Military expenditures:
0.5% of GDP (2009)
country comparison to the world: 165



Disputes - international:
none

Illicit drugs:
used as a transshipment point for Latin American cocaine destined for Western Europe, particularly because of Lusophone links to Brazil, Portugal, and Guinea-Bissau; has taken steps to deter drug money laundering, including a 2002 anti-money laundering reform that criminalizes laundering the proceeds of narcotics trafficking and other crimes and the establishment in 2008 of a Financial Intelligence Unit (2008)

 

Information from the CIA's "The World Fact Book" 2010

 

 

 

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