Zambia

 

The territory of Northern Rhodesia was administered by the [British] South Africa Company from 1891 until it was taken over by the UK in 1923. During the 1920s and 1930s, advances in mining spurred development and immigration. The name was changed to Zambia upon independence in 1964. In the 1980s and 1990s, declining copper prices and a prolonged drought hurt the economy. Elections in 1991 brought an end to one-party rule, but the subsequent vote in 1996 saw blatant harassment of opposition parties.

 

The election in 2001 was marked by administrative problems with three parties filing a legal petition challenging the election of ruling party candidate Levy MWANAWASA. The new president launched an anticorruption investigation in 2002 to probe high-level corruption during the previous administration. In 2006-07, this task force successfully prosecuted four cases, including a landmark civil case in the UK in which former President CHILUBA and numerous others were found liable for USD 41 million. MWANAWASA was re-elected in 2006 in an election that was deemed free and fair.

 

Geography:
Location: Southern Africa, east of Angola
Geographic coordinates: 15 00 S, 30 00 E
People:
Population: 13,817,479 (July 2012 est.)

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, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected

Age structure: 0-14 years: 46.7% (male 3,253,125/female 3,228,844)

15-64 years: 50.8% (male 3,544,640/female 3,508,344)

65 years and over: 2.5% (male 148,531/female 197,852) (2011 est.)

Government:
Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Zambia

conventional short form: Zambia

former: Northern Rhodesia

Government type: republic
Communications:
Telephones – main lines in use: 90,100 (2009)
Telephones – mobile cellular: 4.947 million (2009)
Transportation:
Airports: 88 (2012)
Airports – with paved runways: total: 8

over 3,047 m: 1

2,438 to 3,047 m: 3

1,524 to 2,437 m: 3

914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2012)

Military:
Military branches: Zambian National Defence Force (ZNDF): Zambia Army, Zambia Air Force, National Service (paramilitary youth organization) (2009)
Military service age and obligation: national registration required at age 16; 18-27 years of age for male and female voluntary military service (16 years of age with parental consent); no conscription; Zambian citizenship required; mandatory HIV testing upon enlistment; mandatory retirement for officers at age 65 (Army, Air Force) (2012)

Economy:

Zambia’s economy has experienced modest growth in recent years, with real GDP growth in 2005-07 between 5-6% per year. Privatization of government-owned copper mines in the 1990s relieved the government from covering mammoth losses generated by the industry and greatly improved the chances for copper mining to return to profitability and spur economic growth. Copper output has increased steadily since 2004, due to higher copper prices and foreign investment.

 

In 2005, Zambia qualified for debt relief under the Highly Indebted Poor Country Initiative, consisting of approximately USD 6 billion in debt relief. Zambia experienced a bumper harvest in 2007, which helped to boost GDP and agricultural exports and contain inflation. Although poverty continues to be significant problem in Zambia, its economy has strengthened, featuring single-digit inflation, a relatively stable currency, decreasing interest rates, and increasing levels of trade.