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Cameroon (2003)

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Cameroon 2003 year

Administrative divisions 10 provinces; Adamaoua, Centre, Est, Extreme-Nord, Littoral, Nord, Nord-Ouest, Ouest, Sud, Sud-Ouest
Age structure 0-14 years: 42.3% (male 3,372,129; female 3,291,295)

15-64 years: 54.5% (male 4,315,672; female 4,265,286)

65 years and over: 3.2% (male 227,444; female 274,353) (2003 est.)
Agriculture - products coffee, cocoa, cotton, rubber, bananas, oilseed, grains, root starches; livestock; timber
Airports 49 (2002)
Airports - with paved runways total: 11

over 3,047 m: 2

2,438 to 3,047 m: 4

1,524 to 2,437 m: 3

914 to 1,523 m: 1

under 914 m: 1 (2002)
Airports - with unpaved runways total: 38

1,524 to 2,437 m: 7

914 to 1,523 m: 20

under 914 m: 11 (2002)
Area total: 475,440 sq km

land: 469,440 sq km

water: 6,000 sq km
Area - comparative slightly larger than California
Background The former French Cameroon and part of British Cameroon merged in 1961 to form the present country. Cameroon has generally enjoyed stability, which has permitted the development of agriculture, roads, and railways, as well as a petroleum industry. Despite movement toward democratic reform, political power remains firmly in the hands of an ethnic oligarchy.
Birth rate 35.49 births/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Budget revenues: $2.2 billion

expenditures: $2.1 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (FY 00/01 est.)
Capital Yaounde
Climate varies with terrain, from tropical along coast to semiarid and hot in north
Coastline 402 km
Constitution 20 May 1972 approved by referendum; 2 June 1972 formally adopted; revised January 1996
Country name conventional long form: Republic of Cameroon

conventional short form: Cameroon

former: French Cameroon
Currency Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XAF); note - responsible authority is the Bank of the Central African States
Death rate 15.3 deaths/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Debt - external $8.6 billion (2002 est.)
Diplomatic representation from the US chief of mission: Ambassador George McDade STAPLES

embassy: Rue Nachtigal, Yaounde

mailing address: P. O. Box 817, Yaounde; pouch: American Embassy, Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-2520

telephone: [237] 223-05-12, 222-25-89, 222-17-94, 223-40-14

FAX: [237] 223-07-53

branch office(s): Douala
Diplomatic representation in the US chief of mission: Ambassador Jerome MENDOUGA

chancery: 2349 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 265-8790

FAX: [1] (202) 387-3826
Disputes - international ICJ ruled in 2002 on the Cameroon-Nigeria land and maritime boundary by awarding the potentially petroleum-rich Bakassi Peninsula and offshore region to Cameroon; Nigeria rejected cession of the peninsula, but the parties have formed a Joint Border Commission to resolve differences bilaterally and have commenced with demarcation in less-contested sections of the boundary; Lake Chad Commission continues to urge signatories Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria to ratify delimitation treaty over the lake region, which remains the site of armed clashes among local populations and militias; Nigeria agreed to ratify the treaty and relinquish sovereignty of disputed lands to Cameroon by December 2003
Economic aid - recipient on 23 January 2001, the Paris Club agreed to reduce Cameroon's debt of $1.3 billion by $900 million; total debt relief now amounts to $1.26 billion
Economy - overview Because of its oil resources and favorable agricultural conditions, Cameroon has one of the best-endowed primary commodity economies in sub-Saharan Africa. Still, it faces many of the serious problems facing other underdeveloped countries, such as a top-heavy civil service and a generally unfavorable climate for business enterprise. Since 1990, the government has embarked on various IMF and World Bank programs designed to spur business investment, increase efficiency in agriculture, improve trade, and recapitalize the nation's banks. In June 2000, the government completed an IMF-sponsored, three-year structural adjustment program; however, the IMF is pressing for more reforms, including increased budget transparency, privatization, and poverty reduction programs. International oil and cocoa prices have considerable impact on the economy.
Electricity - consumption 3.36 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports 0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports 0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - production 3.613 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - production by source fossil fuel: 2.7%

hydro: 97.3%

nuclear: 0%

other: 0% (2001)
Elevation extremes lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m

highest point: Fako (on Cameroon Mountain) 4,095 m
Environment - current issues water-borne diseases are prevalent; deforestation; overgrazing; desertification; poaching; overfishing
Environment - international agreements party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94

signed, but not ratified: Nuclear Test Ban
Ethnic groups Cameroon Highlanders 31%, Equatorial Bantu 19%, Kirdi 11%, Fulani 10%, Northwestern Bantu 8%, Eastern Nigritic 7%, other African 13%, non-African less than 1%
Exchange rates Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XAF) per US dollar - 696.99 (2002), 733.04 (2001), 711.98 (2000), 615.7 (1999), 589.95 (1998)
Executive branch chief of state: President Paul BIYA (since 6 November 1982)

head of government: Prime Minister Peter Mafany MUSONGE (since 19 September 1996)

cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president from proposals submitted by the prime minister

elections: president elected by popular vote for a seven-year term; election last held 12 October 1997 (next to be held NA October 2004); prime minister appointed by the president

election results: President Paul BIYA reelected; percent of vote - Paul BIYA 92.6%; note - supporters of the opposition candidates boycotted the elections, making a comparison of vote shares relatively meaningless
Exports 0 kWh (2001)
Exports $1.9 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Exports 0 cu m (2001 est.)
Exports NA (2001)
Exports - commodities crude oil and petroleum products, lumber, cocoa beans, aluminum, coffee, cotton
Exports - partners Italy 16.7%, Spain 16%, France 12.8%, US 8.3%, Netherlands 8.2%, Taiwan 7.7%, China 5.2%, UK 4.4% (2002)
Fiscal year 1 July - 30 June
Flag description three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), red, and yellow with a yellow five-pointed star centered in the red band; uses the popular pan-African colors of Ethiopia
GDP purchasing power parity - $26.84 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector agriculture: 46%

industry: 21%

services: 33% (2001 est.)
GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $1,700 (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate 4% (2002 est.)
Geographic coordinates 6 00 N, 12 00 E
Geography - note sometimes referred to as the hinge of Africa; throughout the country there are areas of thermal springs and indications of current or prior volcanic activity; Mount Cameroon, the highest mountain in Sub-Saharan west Africa, is an active volcano
Highways total: 34,300 km

paved: 4,288 km

unpaved: 30,012 km (1999 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%: 1.9%

highest 10%: 36.6% (1996)
Imports 0 kWh (2001)
Imports $1.7 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Imports 0 cu m (2001 est.)
Imports NA (2001)
Imports - commodities machinery, electrical equipment, transport equipment, fuel, food
Imports - partners France 28.2%, Nigeria 12.8%, US 8%, Belgium 5.7%, Germany 5.3%, Italy 4.3% (2002)
Independence 1 January 1960 (from French-administered UN trusteeship)
Industrial production growth rate 4.2% (1999 est.)
Industries petroleum production and refining, food processing, light consumer goods, textiles, lumber
Infant mortality rate total: 70.12 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 74.2 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 65.91 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 4.5% (2002 est.)
International organization participation ACCT, ACP, AfDB, BDEAC, C, CEEAC, CEMAC, ECA, FAO, FZ, G-19, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO (correspondent), ITU, MONUC, NAM, OAU, OIC, OPCW, PCA, UN, UN Security Council (temporary), UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) 1 (2002)
Irrigated land 330 sq km (1998 est.)
Judicial branch Supreme Court (judges are appointed by the president); High Court of Justice (consists of 9 judges and 6 substitute judges, elected by the National Assembly)
Labor force NA
Labor force - by occupation agriculture 70%, industry and commerce 13%, other 17%
Land boundaries total: 4,591 km

border countries: Central African Republic 797 km, Chad 1,094 km, Republic of the Congo 523 km, Equatorial Guinea 189 km, Gabon 298 km, Nigeria 1,690 km
Land use arable land: 12.81%

permanent crops: 2.58%

other: 84.61% (1998 est.)
Languages 24 major African language groups, English (official), French (official)
Legal system based on French civil law system, with common law influence; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Legislative branch unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (180 seats; members are elected by direct popular vote to serve five-year terms; note - the president can either lengthen or shorten the term of the legislature)

elections: last held 23 June 2002 (next to be held NA 2007)

election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - RDCP 133, SDF 21, UDC 5, other 21

note: the constitution calls for an upper chamber for the legislature, to be called a Senate, but it has yet to be established
Life expectancy at birth total population: 48.05 years

male: 47.15 years

female: 48.97 years (2003 est.)
Literacy definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 79%

male: 84.7%

female: 73.4% (2003 est.)
Location Western Africa, bordering the Bight of Biafra, between Equatorial Guinea and Nigeria
Map references Africa
Maritime claims territorial sea: 50 NM
Military branches Army, Navy (includes naval infantry), Air Force, National Gendarmerie, Presidential Guard
Military expenditures - dollar figure $118.6 million (FY00)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP 1.4% (FY98)
Military manpower - availability males age 15-49: 3,799,841 (2003 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service males age 15-49: 1,928,285 (2003 est.)
Military manpower - military age 18 years of age (2003 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually males: 179,586 (2003 est.)
National holiday Republic Day (National Day), 20 May (1972)
Nationality noun: Cameroonian(s)

adjective: Cameroonian
Natural hazards volcanic activity with periodic releases of poisonous gases from Lake Nyos and Lake Monoun volcanoes
Natural resources petroleum, bauxite, iron ore, timber, hydropower
Net migration rate 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Pipelines gas 90 km; liquid petroleum gas 9 km; oil 1,124 km (2003)
Political parties and leaders Cameroonian Democratic Union or UDC [Adamou NDAM NJOYA]; Democratic Rally of the Cameroon People or RDCP [Paul BIYA]; Movement for the Defense of the Republic or MDR [Dakole DAISSALA]; Movement for the Liberation and Development of Cameroon or MLDC [leader Marcel YONDO]; Movement for the Youth of Cameroon or MYC [Dieudonne TINA]; National Union for Democracy and Progress or UNDP [Maigari BELLO BOUBA]; Social Democratic Front or SDF [John FRU NDI]; Union of Cameroonian Populations or UPC [Augustin Frederic KODOCK]
Political pressure groups and leaders Southern Cameroon National Council [Frederick Ebong ALOBWEDE]; Human Rights Defense Group [Albert MUKONG, president]
Population 15,746,179

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 2003 est.)
Population below poverty line 48% (2000 est.)
Population growth rate 2.02% (2003 est.)
Ports and harbors Bonaberi, Douala, Garoua, Kribi, Tiko
Radio broadcast stations AM 2, FM 9, shortwave 3 (2002)
Railways total: 1,008 km

narrow gauge: 1,008 km 1.000-m gauge (2002)
Religions indigenous beliefs 40%, Christian 40%, Muslim 20%
Sex ratio at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.83 male(s)/female

total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2003 est.)
Suffrage 20 years of age; universal
Telephone system general assessment: available only to business and government

domestic: cable, microwave radio relay, and tropospheric scatter

international: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)
Telephones - main lines in use 95,000 (2001)
Telephones - mobile cellular 300,000 (2002)
Television broadcast stations 1 (2002)
Terrain diverse, with coastal plain in southwest, dissected plateau in center, mountains in west, plains in north
Total fertility rate 4.63 children born/woman (2003 est.)
Unemployment rate 30% (2001 est.)
Waterways 2,090 km (of decreasing importance) (2002)
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