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Introduction - Burundi:
BackgroundBurundis first democratically elected president was assassinated in October 1993 after only 100 days in office, triggering widespread ethnic violence between Hutu and Tutsi factions. More than 200,000 Burundians perished during the conflict that spanned almost a dozen years. Hundreds of thousands of Burundians were internally displaced or became refugees in neighboring countries. An internationally brokered power-sharing agreement between the Tutsi-dominated government and the Hutu rebels in 2003 paved the way for a transition process that led to an integrated defense force, established a new constitution in 2005, and elected a majority Hutu government in 2005. The new government, led by President Pierre NKURUNZIZA, signed a South African brokered ceasefire with the countrys last rebel group in September of 2006 but still faces many challenges.
Location - Burundi:
LocationCentral Africa, east of Democratic Republic of the Congo
Geographic coordinates3 30 S, 30 00 E
Map referencesAfrica
Areatotal: 27,830 sq km
land: 25,650 sq km
water: 2,180 sq km
Area comparativeslightly smaller than Maryland
Land boundariestotal: 974 km
border countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo 233 km, Rwanda 290 km, Tanzania 451 km
Coastline0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claimsnone (landlocked)
Climateequatorial; high plateau with considerable altitude variation (772 m to 2,670 m above sea level); average annual temperature varies with altitude from 23 to 17 degrees centigrade but is generally moderate as the average altitude is about 1,700 m; average annual rainfall is about 150 cm; two wet seasons (February to May and September to November), and two dry seasons (June to August and December to January)
Terrainhilly and mountainous, dropping to a plateau in east, some plains
Elevation extremeslowest point: Lake Tanganyika 772 m
highest point: Heha 2,670 m
Natural resourcesnickel, uranium, rare earth oxides, peat, cobalt, copper, platinum, vanadium, arable land, hydropower, niobium, tantalum, gold, tin, tungsten, kaolin, limestone
Land usearable land: 35.57%
permanent crops: 13.12%
other: 51.31% (2005)
Irrigated land210 sq km (2003)
Natural hazardsflooding, landslides, drought
Environment current issuessoil erosion as a result of overgrazing and the expansion of agriculture into marginal lands; deforestation (little forested land remains because of uncontrolled cutting of trees for fuel); habitat loss threatens wildlife populations
Environment international agreementsparty to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea
Geography notelandlocked; straddles crest of the Nile-Congo watershed; the Kagera, which drains into Lake Victoria, is the most remote headstream of the White Nile
People - Burundi:
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 2007 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 46.3% (male 1,951,879/female 1,930,371)
15-64 years: 51.2% (male 2,131,759/female 2,162,093)
65 years and over: 2.6% (male 85,522/female 128,881) (2007 est.)
Median agetotal: 16.7 years
male: 16.4 years
female: 16.9 years (2007 est.)
Population growth rate3.593% (2007 est.)
Birth rate41.97 births/1,000 population (2007 est.)
Death rate13.17 deaths/1,000 population (2007 est.)
Net migration rate7.13 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2007 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.011 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.986 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.664 male(s)/female
total population: 0.988 male(s)/female (2007 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 61.93 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 68.91 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 54.75 deaths/1,000 live births (2007 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 51.29 years
male: 50.48 years
female: 52.12 years (2007 est.)
Total fertility rate6.48 children born/woman (2007 est.)
Hiv aids adult prevalence rate6% (2003 est.)
Hiv aids people living with hiv aids250,000 (2003 est.)
Hiv aids deaths25,000 (2003 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Burundian(s)
adjective: Burundian
Major infectious diseasesdegree of risk: very high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne disease: malaria (2007)
Ethnic groupsHutu (Bantu) 85%, Tutsi (Hamitic) 14%, Twa (Pygmy) 1%, Europeans 3,000, South Asians 2,000
ReligionsChristian 67% (Roman Catholic 62%, Protestant 5%), indigenous beliefs 23%, Muslim 10%
LanguagesKirundi (official), French (official), Swahili (along Lake Tanganyika and in the Bujumbura area)
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 59.3%
male: 67.3%
female: 52.2% (2000 est.)
Government - Burundi:
Country nameconventional long form: Republic of Burundi
conventional short form: Burundi
local long form: Republique du Burundi/Republika yu Burundi
local short form: Burundi
former: Urundi
Government typerepublic
Capitalname: Bujumbura
geographic coordinates: 3 22 S, 29 21 E
time difference: UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions17 provinces; Bubanza, Bujumbura Mairie, Bujumbura Rurale, Bururi, Cankuzo, Cibitoke, Gitega, Karuzi, Kayanza, Kirundo, Makamba, Muramvya, Muyinga, Mwaro, Ngozi, Rutana, Ruyigi
Independence1 July 1962 (from UN trusteeship under Belgian administration)
National holidayIndependence Day, 1 July (1962)
Constitution28 February 2005; ratified by popular referendum
Legal systembased on German and Belgian civil codes and customary law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
SuffrageNA years of age; universal (adult)
Executive branchchief of state: President Pierre NKURUNZIZA (since 26 August 2005); First Vice President Martin NDUWIMANA - Tutsi (since 29 August 2005); Second Vice President Gabriel NTISEZERANA - Hutu (since 9 February 2007)
head of government: President Pierre NKURUNZIZA (since 26 August 2005); First Vice President Martin NDUWIMANA - Tutsi (since 29 August 2005); Second Vice President Gabriel NTISEZERANA - Hutu (since 9 February 2007)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by president
elections: the president is elected by popular vote to a five-year term (eligible for a second term); note - the constitution adopted in February 2005 permits the post-transition president to be elected by a two-thirds majority of the parliament; vice presidents nominated by the president, endorsed by parliament
election results: Pierre NKURUNZIZA was elected president by the parliament by a vote of 151 to 9; note - the constitution adopted in February 2005 permits the post-transition president to be elected by a two-thirds majority of the legislature
Legislative branchbicameral Parliament or Parlement, consists of a National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (minimum 100 seats, 60% Hutu and 40% Tutsi with at least 30% being women; additional seats appointed by a National Independent Electoral Commission to ensure ethnic representation; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) and a Senate (54 seats; 34 members elected by indirect vote to serve five-year terms, with remaining seats assigned to ethnic groups and former chiefs of state)
elections: National Assembly - last held 4 July 2005 (next to be held in 2010); Senate - last held 29 July 2005 (next to be held in 2010)
election results: National Assembly - percent of vote by party - CNDD-FDD 58.6%, FRODEBU 21.7%, UPRONA 7.2%, CNDD 4.1%, MRC-Rurenzangemero 2.1%, others 6.2%; seats by party - CNDD-FDD 59, FRODEBU 25, UPRONA 10, CNDD 4, MRC-Rurenzangemero 2; Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - CNDD-FDD 30, FRODEBU 3, CNDD 1
Judicial branchSupreme Court or Cour Supreme; Constitutional Court; Courts of Appeal (there are three in separate locations); Tribunals of First Instance (17 at the province level and 123 small local tribunals)
Political parties and leadersgoverning parties: Burundi Democratic Front or FRODEBU [Leonce NGENDAKUMANA]; National Council for the Defense of Democracy, Front for the Defense of Democracy or CNDD-FDD [Jeremie NGENDAKUMANA]; Unity for National Progress or UPRONA [Aloys RUBUKA]
note: a multiparty system was introduced after 1998, included are: National Council for the Defense of Democracy or CNDD; National Resistance Movement for the Rehabilitation of the Citizen or MRC-Rurenzangemero [Epitace BANYAGANAKANDI]; Party for National Redress or PARENA [Jean-Baptiste BAGAZA]
Political pressure groups and leadersnone
International organization participationACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, CEPGL, COMESA, EAC, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), IPU, ISO (subscriber), ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NAM, OIF, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the uschief of mission: Ambassador Celestin NIYONGABO
chancery: Suite 212, 2233 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20007
telephone: [1] (202) 342-2574
FAX: [1] (202) 342-2578
Diplomatic representation from the uschief of mission: Ambassador Patricia Newton MOLLER
embassy: Avenue des Etats-Unis, Bujumbura
mailing address: B. P. 1720, Bujumbura
telephone: [257] 223454
FAX: [257] 222926
Flag descriptiondivided by a white diagonal cross into red panels (top and bottom) and green panels (hoist side and fly side) with a white disk superimposed at the center bearing three red six-pointed stars outlined in green arranged in a triangular design (one star above, two stars below)
Economy - Burundi:
Economy overviewBurundi is a landlocked, resource-poor country with an underdeveloped manufacturing sector. The economy is predominantly agricultural with more than 90% of the population dependent on subsistence agriculture. Economic growth depends on coffee and tea exports, which account for 90% of foreign exchange earnings. The ability to pay for imports, therefore, rests primarily on weather conditions and international coffee and tea prices. The Tutsi minority, 14% of the population, dominates the government and the coffee trade at the expense of the Hutu majority, 85% of the population. An ethnic-based war that lasted for over a decade resulted in more than 200,000 deaths, forced more than 48,000 refugees into Tanzania, and displaced 140,000 others internally. Only one in two children go to school, and approximately one in 15 adults has HIV/AIDS. Food, medicine, and electricity remain in short supply. Political stability and the end of the civil war have improved aid flows and economic activity has increased, but underlying weaknesses - a high poverty rate, poor education rates, a weak legal system, and low administrative capacity - risk undermining planned economic reforms. Burundi grew about 5 percent in 2006. Delayed disbursements of funds from the World Bank may add to budget pressures in 2007. Burundi will continue to remain heavily dependent on aid from bilateral and multilateral donors.
Gdp purchasing power parity $5.781 billion (2006 est.)
Gdp official exchange rate $776 million (2006 est.)
Gdp real growth rate3.8% (2006 est.)
Gdp per capita ppp $700 (2006 est.)
Gdp composition by sectoragriculture: 44.9%
industry: 20.9%
services: 34.1% (2006 est.)
Labor force2.99 million (2002)
Labor force by occupationagriculture: 93.6%
industry: 2.3%
services: 4.1% (2002 est.)
Unemployment rateNA%
Population below poverty line68% (2002 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 1.8%
highest 10%: 32.9% (1998)
Distribution of family income gini index33.3 (1998)
Inflation rate consumer prices 11% (2006 est.)
Investment gross fixed 11.9% of GDP (2006 est.)
Budgetrevenues: $239.9 million
expenditures: $297 million; including capital expenditures of $NA (2006 est.)
Agriculture productscoffee, cotton, tea, corn, sorghum, sweet potatoes, bananas, manioc (tapioca); beef, milk, hides
Industrieslight consumer goods such as blankets, shoes, soap; assembly of imported components; public works construction; food processing
Industrial production growth rate18% (2001)
Electricity production137 million kWh (2004)
Electricity consumption157.4 million kWh (2004)
Electricity exports0 kWh (2004)
Electricity imports30 million kWh; note - supplied by the Democratic Republic of the Congo (2004)
Oil production0 bbl/day (2004)
Oil consumption3,100 bbl/day (2004 est.)
Oil exportsNA bbl/day
Oil importsNA bbl/day
Oil proved reserves0 bbl
Natural gas production0 cu m (2004 est.)
Natural gas consumption0 cu m (2004 est.)
Current account balance-$57.84 million (2006 est.)
Exports$55.68 million f.o.b. (2006 est.)
Exports commoditiescoffee, tea, sugar, cotton, hides
Exports partnersGermany 18%, Switzerland 8.6%, Belgium 5.5%, Rwanda 5.4%, Italy 4.6% (2006)
Imports$207.3 million f.o.b. (2006 est.)
Imports commoditiescapital goods, petroleum products, foodstuffs
Imports partnersKenya 19%, Italy 15.1%, Tanzania 11.1%, Belgium 9.7%, Uganda 5.6%, France 4.5%, India 4.3% (2006)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$87.69 million (2006 est.)
Debt external$1.2 billion (2003)
Economic aid recipient$105.5 million (2003)
Currency code Burundi franc (BIF)
Exchange ratesBurundi francs per US dollar - 1,030 (2006), 1,138 (2005), 1,100.91 (2004), 1,082.62 (2003), 930.75 (2002)
Communications - Burundi:
Fiscal yearcalendar year
Telephones main lines in use31,100 (2005)
Telephones mobile cellular153,000 (2005)
Telephone systemgeneral assessment: primitive system
domestic: sparse system of open-wire, radiotelephone communications, and low-capacity microwave radio relay
international: country code - 257; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean)
Radio broadcast stationsAM 0, FM 4, shortwave 1 (2001)
Television broadcast stations1 (2001)
Internet country code.bi
Internet hosts160 (2006)
Internet users60,000 (2006)
Transportation - Burundi:
Airports8 (2006)
Airports with paved runwaystotal: 1
over 3,047 m: 1 (2006)
Airports with unpaved runwaystotal: 7
914 to 1,523 m: 4
under 914 m: 3 (2006)
Roadwaystotal: 12,322 km
paved: 1,286 km
unpaved: 11,036 km (2004)
Waterwaysmainly on Lake Tanganyika (2005)
Ports and terminalsBujumbura
Military - Burundi:
Military branchesNational Defense Force (Forces de Defense Nationales, FDN): Army (includes Naval Detachment and Air Wing) (2006)
Military service age and obligation16 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service (2001)
Manpower available for military servicemales age 16-49: 1,676,855
females age 16-49: 1,656,366 (2005 est.)
Manpower fit for military servicemales age 16-49: 955,616
females age 16-49: 932,767 (2005 est.)
Manpower reaching military service age annuallymales age 18-49: 91,331
females age 16-49: 90,685 (2005 est.)
Military expenditures percent of gdp5.9% (2006 est.)
Disputes internationalconflicts among Tutsi, Hutu, other ethnic groups, associated political rebels, armed gangs, and various government forces have abated somewhat in the Great Lakes region; UN Operation in Burundi (ONUB) completed its mandate in December 2006 after a three-year peace-keeping mission
This page was last updated on 16 September, 2007
Source: CIA >>>

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