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Africa :: Congo, Republic of the
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Congo, Republic of the
  • Introduction :: CONGO, REPUBLIC OF THE

  • Upon independence in 1960, the former French region of Middle Congo became the Republic of the Congo. A quarter century of experimentation with Marxism was abandoned in 1990 and a democratically elected government took office in 1992. A brief civil war in 1997 restored former Marxist President Denis SASSOU-Nguesso, and ushered in a period of ethnic and political unrest. Southern-based rebel groups agreed to a final peace accord in March 2003. The Republic of Congo is one of Africa's largest petroleum producers, but with declining production it will need new offshore oil finds to sustain its oil earnings over the long term.
  • Geography :: CONGO, REPUBLIC OF THE

  • Central Africa, bordering the South Atlantic Ocean, between Angola and Gabon
    1 00 S, 15 00 E
    Africa
    total: 342,000 sq km
    land: 341,500 sq km
    water: 500 sq km
    country comparison to the world: 64
    slightly smaller than Montana
    total: 5,008 km
    border countries (5): Angola 231 km, Cameroon 494 km, Central African Republic 487 km, Democratic Republic of the Congo 1,229 km, Gabon 2,567 km
    169 km
    territorial sea: 12 nm
    contiguous zone: 24 nm
    exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
    tropical; rainy season (March to June); dry season (June to October); persistent high temperatures and humidity; particularly enervating climate astride the Equator
    coastal plain, southern basin, central plateau, northern basin
    mean elevation: 430 m
    elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
    highest point: Mount Berongou 903 m
    petroleum, timber, potash, lead, zinc, uranium, copper, phosphates, gold, magnesium, natural gas, hydropower
    agricultural land: 31.1%
    arable land 1.6%; permanent crops 0.2%; permanent pasture 29.3%
    forest: 65.6%
    other: 3.3% (2011 est.)
    20 sq km (2012)
    832 cu km (2011)
    total: 0.05 cu km/yr (69%/26%/4%)
    per capita: 13.99 cu m/yr (2005)
    seasonal flooding
    air pollution from vehicle emissions; water pollution from raw sewage; tap water is not potable; deforestation
    party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands
    signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
    about 70% of the population lives in Brazzaville, Pointe-Noire, or along the railroad between them
  • People and Society :: CONGO, REPUBLIC OF THE

  • noun: Congolese (singular and plural)
    adjective: Congolese or Congo
    Kongo 48%, Sangha 20%, M'Bochi 12%, Teke 17%, Europeans and other 3%
    French (official), Lingala and Monokutuba (lingua franca trade languages), many local languages and dialects (of which Kikongo is the most widespread)
    Roman Catholic 33.1%, Awakening Churches/Christian Revival 22.3%, Protestant 19.9%, Salutiste 2.2%, Muslim 1.6%, Kimbanguiste 1.5%, other 8.1%, none 11.3% (2010 est.)
    4,755,097
    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 (July 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 125
    0-14 years: 41.33% (male 991,327/female 973,745)
    15-24 years: 17.48% (male 415,282/female 415,817)
    25-54 years: 34.12% (male 819,204/female 803,062)
    55-64 years: 4.08% (male 95,755/female 98,295)
    65 years and over: 3% (male 62,332/female 80,278) (2015 est.)
    population pyramid:
    total dependency ratio: 86.2%
    youth dependency ratio: 79.4%
    elderly dependency ratio: 6.8%
    potential support ratio: 14.7% (2015 est.)
    total: 19.8 years
    male: 19.6 years
    female: 19.9 years (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 191
    2% (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 50
    35.85 births/1,000 population (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 20
    10 deaths/1,000 population (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 45
    -5.9 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 197
    urban population: 65.4% of total population (2015)
    rate of urbanization: 3.22% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
    BRAZZAVILLE (capital) 1.888 million; Pointe-Noire 969,000 (2015)
    at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
    0-14 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
    15-24 years: 1 male(s)/female
    25-54 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
    55-64 years: 0.97 male(s)/female
    65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/female
    total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2015 est.)
    19.7
    note: median age at first birth among women 20-24 (2011/12 est.)
    442 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 16
    total: 57.92 deaths/1,000 live births
    male: 62.97 deaths/1,000 live births
    female: 52.71 deaths/1,000 live births (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 24
    total population: 58.79 years
    male: 57.64 years
    female: 59.98 years (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 200
    4.68 children born/woman (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 22
    44.7% (2011/12)
    4.1% of GDP (2013)
    country comparison to the world: 179
    0.1 physicians/1,000 population (2007)
    1.6 beds/1,000 population (2005)
    improved:
    urban: 95.8% of population
    rural: 40% of population
    total: 76.5% of population
    unimproved:
    urban: 4.2% of population
    rural: 60% of population
    total: 23.5% of population (2015 est.)
    improved:
    urban: 20% of population
    rural: 5.6% of population
    total: 15% of population
    unimproved:
    urban: 80% of population
    rural: 94.4% of population
    total: 85% of population (2015 est.)
    2.75% (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 22
    80,700 (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 46
    4,400 (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 34
    degree of risk: very high
    food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
    vectorborne disease: malaria and dengue fever
    animal contact disease: rabies
    water contact disease: schistosomiasis (2013)
    9.7% (2014)
    country comparison to the world: 163
    12.3% (2015)
    country comparison to the world: 61
    6.2% of GDP (2010)
    country comparison to the world: 39
    definition: age 15 and over can read and write
    total population: 79.3%
    male: 86.4%
    female: 72.9% (2015 est.)
    total: 11 years
    male: 11 years
    female: 11 years (2012)
    total number: 252,171
    percentage: 25% (2005 est.)
  • Government :: CONGO, REPUBLIC OF THE

  • conventional long form: Republic of the Congo
    conventional short form: Congo (Brazzaville)
    local long form: Republique du Congo
    local short form: Congo
    former: French Congo, Middle Congo, People's Republic of the Congo, Congo/Brazzaville
    etymology: named for the Congo River, which makes up much of the country's eastern border; the river name derives from Kongo, a Bantu kingdom that occupied its mouth at the time of Portuguese discovery in the late 15th century and whose name stems from its people the Bakongo, meaning "hunters"
    presidential republic
    name: Brazzaville
    geographic coordinates: 4 15 S, 15 17 E
    time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
    12 departments (departments, singular - department); Bouenza, Brazzaville, Cuvette, Cuvette-Ouest, Kouilou, Lekoumou, Likouala, Niari, Plateaux, Pointe-Noire, Pool, Sangha
    15 August 1960 (from France)
    Independence Day, 15 August (1960)
    previous 1992; latest approved by referendum 20 January 2002; amended 2015; note - the constitutional referendum approved in October 2015 changed the head of government from the president to the prime minister, reduced the presidential term from 7 to 5 years and limited total presidential terms to 3
    mixed legal system of French civil law and customary law
    has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
    citizenship by birth: no
    citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of the Republic of the Congo
    dual citizenship recognized: no
    residency requirement for naturalization: 10 years
    18 years of age; universal
    chief of state: President Denis SASSOU-Nguesso (since 25 October 1997)
    head of government: Prime Minister Clement MOUAMBA (since 23 April 2016); note - a constitutional referendum held in 2015 approved the change of the head of government from the president to the prime minister
    cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president
    elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 5-year term (eligible for 2 additional terms); election last held on 20 March 2016 (next to be held in 2021)
    election results: Denis SASSOU-Nguesso reelected president; percent of vote - Denis SASSOU-Nguesso (PCT) 60.4%, Guy Price Parfait KOLELAS (MCDDI) 15.1%, Jean-Marie MOKOKO (independent) 13.9%, Pascal Tsaty MABIALA (UPADS) 4.4%, other 6.2%
    description: bicameral Parliament or Parlement consists of the Senate (72 seats; members indirectly elected by regional councils by simple majority vote to serve 6-year terms with one-half of membership renewed every three years) and the National Assembly (139 seats; members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by absolute majority popular vote in two rounds if needed; members serve 5-year terms)
    elections: Senate - last held on 12 October 2014 for 36 of the expiry seats (next to be held in 2020); National Assembly - last held on 15 July and 5 August 2012 (next to be held in July 2017)
    election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - RMP 33, FDU 23, UPADS 2, other 7, independent 7; National Assembly - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PCT 89, MCDDI 7, UPADS 7, RDPS 5, MAR 4, RC 3, MUST 2, UPDP 2, CPR 1, PRL 1, PUR 1, UFD 1, UR 1, independent 12, vacant 3
    highest court(s): Supreme Court or Cour Supreme (consists of NA judges); note - the High Court of Justice, outside the judicial authority, tries cases involving treason by the president of the republic
    judge selection and term of office: judges elected by parliament and serve until retirement age
    subordinate courts: courts of appeal; regional and district courts; employment tribunals; juvenile courts
    Action Movement for Renewal or MAR [Roland BOUITI-VIAUDO]
    Citizen's Rally or RC
    Congolese Labour Party or PCT [Denis SASSOU-NGUESSO]
    Congolese Movement for Democracy and Integral Development or MCDDI [Guy Price Parfait KOLELAS]
    Movement for Unity, Solidarity, and Work or MUST [Claudine MUNARI]
    Pan-African Union for Social Development or UPADS [Pascal Tsaty MABIALA]
    Party for the Unity of the Republic or PUR
    Patriotic Union for Democracy and Progress or UPDP [Auguste-Celestin GONGARD NKOUA
    Prospects and Realities Club or CPR
    Rally for Democracy and Social Progress or RDPS [Bernard BATCHI]
    Rally of the Presidential Majority or RMP
    Republican and Liberal Party or PRL
    Union for the Republic or UR
    Union of Democratic Forces
    Union for Democracy and Republic or UDR
    United Democratic Forces or FDU [Sebastian EBAO]; many smaller parties
    Congolese Trade Union Congress or CSC
    General Union of Congolese Pupils and Students or UGEEC
    Revolutionary Union of Congolese Women or URFC
    Union of Congolese Socialist Youth or UJSC
    ACP, AfDB, AU, BDEAC, CEMAC, EITI (compliant country), FAO, FZ, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, NAM, OIF, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
    chief of mission: Ambassador Serge MOMBOULI (since 31 July 2001)
    chancery: 1720 16th Street NW, Washington, DC 20009
    telephone: [1] (202) 726-5500
    FAX: [1] (202) 726-1860
    chief of mission: Ambassador Stephanie S. SULLIVAN (since 12 August 2013)
    embassy: 70-83 Section D, Maya-Maya Boulevard, Brazzaville
    mailing address: B.P. 1015, Brazzaville
    telephone: [242] 06 612-2000
    divided diagonally from the lower hoist side by a yellow band; the upper triangle (hoist side) is green and the lower triangle is red; green symbolizes agriculture and forests, yellow the friendship and nobility of the people, red is unexplained but has been associated with the struggle for independence
    note: uses the popular Pan-African colors of Ethiopia
    lion, elephant; national colors: green, yellow, red
    name: "La Congolaise" (The Congolese)
    lyrics/music: Jacques TONDRA and Georges KIBANGHI/Jean ROYER and Joseph SPADILIERE
    note: originally adopted 1959, restored 1991
  • Economy :: CONGO, REPUBLIC OF THE

  • The economy is a mixture of subsistence farming and hunting, an industrial sector based largely on oil and support services, and government spending. Oil has supplanted forestry as the mainstay of the economy, providing a major share of government revenues and exports. Natural gas is increasingly being converted to electricity rather than being flared, greatly improving energy prospects. New mining projects, particularly iron ore, which entered production in late 2013, may add as much as $1 billion to annual government revenue.
    Economic reform efforts have been undertaken with the support of international organizations, notably the World Bank and the IMF, including the recently concluded Article IV consultations. The current administration faces difficult economic challenges of stimulating recovery and reducing poverty. The recent drop in oil prices has constrained government spending; lower oil prices forced the government to cut more than $1 billion in planned spending. However, the government increased infrastructure spending for the September 2015 All-Africa Games and also ahead of the March 2016 presidential election, putting further pressure on the budget.
    Officially the country became a net external creditor as of 2011, with external debt representing only about 16% of GDP and debt servicing less than 3% of government revenue.
    $29.36 billion (2015 est.)
    $28.64 billion (2014 est.)
    $26.81 billion (2013 est.)
    note: data are in 2015 US dollars
    country comparison to the world: 130
    $8.878 billion (2015 est.)
    2.5% (2015 est.)
    6.8% (2014 est.)
    3.3% (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 122
    $6,700 (2015 est.)
    $6,700 (2014 est.)
    $6,400 (2013 est.)
    note: data are in 2015 US dollars
    country comparison to the world: 155
    19.1% of GDP (2015 est.)
    32.7% of GDP (2014 est.)
    26.5% of GDP (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 87
    household consumption: 48.2%
    government consumption: 14%
    investment in fixed capital: 43.8%
    investment in inventories: 0.1%
    exports of goods and services: 61.6%
    imports of goods and services: -67.7% (2015 est.)
    agriculture: 4.9%
    industry: 68.8%
    services: 26.3% (2015 est.)
    cassava (manioc, tapioca), sugar, rice, corn, peanuts, vegetables, coffee, cocoa; forest products
    petroleum extraction, cement, lumber, brewing, sugar, palm oil, soap, flour, cigarettes
    1.3% (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 136
    1.807 million (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 124
    53% (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 201
    46.5% (2011 est.)
    lowest 10%: 2.1%
    highest 10%: 37.1% (2005)
    revenues: $3.896 billion
    expenditures: $4.747 billion (2015 est.)
    43.9% of GDP (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 28
    -9.6% of GDP (2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 203
    47.3% of GDP (2015 est.)
    36.5% of GDP (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 90
    calendar year
    2% (2015 est.)
    0.9% (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 114
    4.25% (31 December 2009)
    4.75% (31 December 2008)
    country comparison to the world: 89
    14.8% (31 December 2015 est.)
    14.8% (31 December 2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 43
    $4.08 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    $4.223 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 104
    $4.875 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    $4.858 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 132
    $362.9 million (31 December 2015 est.)
    $44.13 million (31 December 2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 177
    $NA
    -$1.264 billion (2015 est.)
    -$1.281 billion (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 130
    $5.855 billion (2015 est.)
    $9.12 billion (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 104
    petroleum, lumber, plywood, sugar, cocoa, coffee, diamonds
    China 52%, Australia 8.3%, Italy 8.2%, US 4% (2014)
    $3.779 billion (2015 est.)
    $4.939 billion (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 136
    capital equipment, construction materials, foodstuffs
    Algeria 47.8%, China 10.6%, France 9%, Italy 4.3% (2014)
    $4.407 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
    $4.939 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 98
    $3.763 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
    $3.452 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 136
    Cooperation Financiere en Afrique Centrale francs (XAF) per US dollar -
    580.5 (2015 est.)
    494.42 (2014 est.)
    494.42 (2013 est.)
    510.53 (2012 est.)
    471.87 (2011 est.)
  • Energy :: CONGO, REPUBLIC OF THE

  • 1.303 billion kWh (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 146
    740 million kWh (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 161
    0 kWh (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 119
    55 million kWh (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 102
    238,000 kW (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 158
    12.2% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 197
    0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 65
    87.8% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 15
    0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 166
    250,000 bbl/day (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 33
    278,400 bbl/day (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 27
    0 bbl/day (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 171
    1.6 billion bbl (1 January 2015 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 37
    17,740 bbl/day (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 95
    15,000 bbl/day (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 142
    5,160 bbl/day (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 95
    2,571 bbl/day (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 178
    1.65 billion cu m (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 59
    1.65 billion cu m (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 83
    39 million cu m (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 47
    0 cu m (2013 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 176
    90.61 billion cu m (1 January 2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 57
    6.691 million Mt (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 116
  • Communications :: CONGO, REPUBLIC OF THE

  • total subscriptions: 16,300
    subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: less than 1 (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 193
    total: 4.9 million
    subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 106 (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 118
    general assessment: primary network consists of microwave radio relay and coaxial cable with services barely adequate for government use; key exchanges are in Brazzaville, Pointe-Noire, and Loubomo; intercity lines frequently out of order
    domestic: fixed-line infrastructure inadequate, providing less than 1 connection per 100 persons; in the absence of an adequate fixed-line infrastructure, mobile-cellular subscribership has surged to 90 per 100 persons
    international: country code - 242; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2011)
    1 state-owned TV and 3 state-owned radio stations; several privately owned TV and radio stations; satellite TV service is available; rebroadcasts of several international broadcasters are available (2007)
    AM 1, FM 5, shortwave 3 (2001)
    1 (2001)
    .cg
    45 (2012)
    country comparison to the world: 215
    total: 89,500
    percent of population: 1.9% (2014 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 171
  • Transportation :: CONGO, REPUBLIC OF THE

  • 27 (2013)
    country comparison to the world: 125
    total: 8
    over 3,047 m: 2
    2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
    1,524 to 2,437 m: 5 (2013)
    total: 19
    1,524 to 2,437 m: 8
    914 to 1,523 m: 9
    under 914 m: 2 (2013)
    gas 232 km; liquid petroleum gas 4 km; oil 982 km (2013)
    total: 510 km
    narrow gauge: 510 km 1.067-m gauge (2014)
    country comparison to the world: 113
    total: 17,000 km
    paved: 1,212 km
    unpaved: 15,788 km (2006)
    country comparison to the world: 118
    1,120 km (commercially navigable on Congo and Oubanqui Rivers above Brazzaville; there are many ferries across the river to Kinshasa; the Congo south of Brazzaville-Kinshasa to the coast is not navigable because of rapids, necessitating a rail connection to Pointe Noire; other rivers are used for local traffic only) (2011)
    country comparison to the world: 61
    registered in other countries: 1 (Democratic Republic of the Congo 1) (2010)
    country comparison to the world: 148
    major seaport(s): Pointe-Noire
    river port(s): Brazzaville (Congo); Impfondo (Oubangi); Ouesso (Sangha); Oyo (Alima)
    oil terminal(s): Djeno
  • Military and Security :: CONGO, REPUBLIC OF THE

  • Congolese Armed Forces (Forces Armees Congolaises, FAC): Army (Armee de Terre), Navy, Congolese Air Force (Armee de l'Air Congolaise); Gendarmerie; Special Presidential Security Guard (GSSP) (2013)
    18 years of age for voluntary military service; women may serve in the Armed Forces (2012)
  • Transnational Issues :: CONGO, REPUBLIC OF THE

  • the location of the boundary in the broad Congo River with the Democratic Republic of the Congo is undefined except in the Pool Malebo/Stanley Pool area
    refugees (country of origin): 9,104 (Rwanda) (2014); 28,601 (Central African Republic); 12,269 (Democratic Republic of the Congo) (2016)
    IDPs: 7,800 (multiple civil wars since 1992) (2014)
    current situation: the Republic of the Congo is a source and destination country for children, men, and women, subjected to forced labor and sex trafficking; most trafficking victims are from Benin, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and, to a lesser extent, other neighboring countries and are subjected to domestic servitude and market vending by West African and Congolese nationals; adults and children, the majority from the DRC, are also sex trafficked in Congo, mainly Brazzaville; internal trafficking victims, often from rural areas, are exploited as domestic servants or forced to work in quarries, bakeries, fishing, and agriculture
    tier rating: Tier 2 Watch List - the Republic of the Congo does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking; however, it is making significant efforts to do so; the country drafted an action plan based on anti-trafficking legislation, which remains pending in the Supreme Court; the government made minimal anti-trafficking law enforcement efforts in 2014, failing to prosecute or convict suspected traffickers from cases dating back to 2010; serious allegations of official complicity continue to be reported; the government lacks a systematic means of identifying victims and relies on NGOs and international organizations to identify victims and NGOs and foster families to provide care to victims; the quality of care varied widely because the foster care system was allegedly undermined by inadequate security and official complicity (2015)
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