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Gambia, The (2004)

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Gambia, The 2004 year

 Gambia, The
Administrative divisions 5 divisions and 1 city*; Banjul*, Central River, Lower River, North Bank, Upper River, Western
Age structure 0-14 years: 44.7% (male 347,349; female 344,264)

15-64 years: 52.6% (male 403,297; female 410,382)

65 years and over: 2.7% (male 21,459; female 20,097) (2004 est.)
Agriculture - products rice, millet, sorghum, peanuts, corn, sesame, cassava (tapioca), palm kernels; cattle, sheep, goats
Airports 1 (2003 est.)
Airports - with paved runways total: 1

over 3,047 m: 1 (2004 est.)
Area total: 11,300 sq km

land: 10,000 sq km

water: 1,300 sq km
Area - comparative slightly less than twice the size of Delaware
Background The Gambia gained its independence from the UK in 1965; it formed a short-lived federation of Senegambia with Senegal between 1982 and 1989. In 1991 the two nations signed a friendship and cooperation treaty. A military coup in 1994 overthrew the president and banned political activity, but a 1996 constitution and presidential elections, followed by parliamentary balloting in 1997, completed a nominal return to civilian rule. The country undertook another round of presidential and legislative elections in late 2001 and early 2002. Yahya A. J. J. JAMMEH, the leader of the coup, has been elected president in all subsequent elections.
Birth rate 40.3 births/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Budget revenues: $58.63 million

expenditures: $62.64 million, including capital expenditures of $4.1 million (2003 est.)
Capital Banjul
Climate tropical; hot, rainy season (June to November); cooler, dry season (November to May)
Coastline 80 km
Constitution 24 April 1970; suspended July 1994; rewritten and approved by national referendum 8 August 1996; reestablished January 1997
Country name conventional long form: Republic of The Gambia

conventional short form: The Gambia
Currency dalasi (GMD)
Death rate 12.08 deaths/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Debt - external $476 million (2001 est.)
Diplomatic representation from the US chief of mission: Ambassador Jackson McDONALD

embassy: Kairaba Avenue, Fajara, Banjul

mailing address: P. M. B. No. 19, Banjul

telephone: [220] 392856, 392858, 391971

FAX: [220] 392475
Diplomatic representation in the US chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Lena Manga Sagnia SECK

chancery: Suite 905, 1156 15th Street NW, Washington, DC 20005

telephone: [1] (202) 785-1379

FAX: [1] (202) 785-1430
Disputes - international attempts to stem refugees, cross-border raids, arms smuggling, other illegal activities, and political instability from separatist movement in southern Senegal's Casamance region
Economic aid - recipient $45.4 million (1995)
Economy - overview The Gambia has no important mineral or other natural resources and has a limited agricultural base. About 75% of the population depends on crops and livestock for its livelihood. Small-scale manufacturing activity features the processing of peanuts, fish, and hides. Reexport trade normally constitutes a major segment of economic activity, but a 1999 government-imposed preshipment inspection plan, and instability of the Gambian dalasi (currency) have drawn some of the reexport trade away from The Gambia. The government's 1998 seizure of the private peanut firm Alimenta eliminated the largest purchaser of Gambian groundnuts; the following two marketing seasons have seen substantially lower prices and sales. A decline in tourism in 2000 has also held back growth. Unemployment and underemployment rates are extremely high. Shortrun economic progress remains highly dependent on sustained bilateral and multilateral aid, on responsible government economic management as forwarded by IMF technical help and advice, and on expected growth in the construction sector.
Electricity - consumption 79.36 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports 0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports 0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - production 85.33 million kWh (2001)
Elevation extremes lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m

highest point: unnamed location 53 m
Environment - current issues deforestation; desertification; water-borne diseases prevalent
Environment - international agreements party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Ethnic groups African 99% (Mandinka 42%, Fula 18%, Wolof 16%, Jola 10%, Serahuli 9%, other 4%), non-African 1%
Exchange rates dalasi per US dollar - NA (2003), 19.9182 (2002), 15.6872 (2001), 12.7876 (2000), 11.3951 (1999)
Executive branch chief of state: President Yahya A. J. J. JAMMEH (since 18 October 1996; note - from 1994 to 1996 he was Chairman of the Junta); Vice President Isatou Njie SAIDY (since 20 March 1997); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Yahya A. J. J. JAMMEH (since 18 October 1996; note - from 1994 to 1996 was he Chairman of the Junta); Vice President Isatou Njie SAIDY (since 20 March 1997); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president

elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; the number of terms is not restricted; election last held 18 October 2001 (next to be held October 2006)

election results: Yahya A. J. J. JAMMEH reelected president; percent of vote - Yahya A. J. J. JAMMEH 52.9%, Ousainou DARBOE 32.7%
Exports 0 kWh (2001)
Exports $156 million f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Exports NA (2001)
Exports - commodities peanut products, fish, cotton lint, palm kernels, re-exports
Exports - partners UK 26.7%, Belgium 6.7%, China 6.7%, Germany 6.7%, Italy 6.7%, Malaysia 6.7%, Thailand 6.7% (2003)
Fiscal year calendar year
Flag description three equal horizontal bands of red (top), blue with white edges, and green
GDP purchasing power parity - $2.56 billion (2003 est.)
GDP - composition by sector agriculture: 46.8%

industry: 9.3%

services: 43.8% (2003 est.)
GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $1,700 (2003 est.)
GDP - real growth rate 3% (2003 est.)
Geographic coordinates 13 28 N, 16 34 W
Geography - note almost an enclave of Senegal; smallest country on the continent of Africa
Highways total: 2,700 km

paved: 956 km

unpaved: 1,744 km (1999)
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%: NA

highest 10%: NA
Imports 0 kWh (2001)
Imports $271 million f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Imports NA (2001)
Imports - commodities foodstuffs, manufactures, fuel, machinery and transport equipment
Imports - partners China 24.9%, Senegal 8.9%, Brazil 6.8%, UK 6.6%, US 5.6%, Netherlands 5%, India 4.9% (2003)
Independence 18 February 1965 (from UK)
Industrial production growth rate NA
Industries processing peanuts, fish, and hides; tourism; beverages; agricultural machinery assembly, woodworking, metalworking; clothing
Infant mortality rate total: 73.48 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 80.14 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 66.62 deaths/1,000 live births (2004 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 14% (2003 est.)
Irrigated land 20 sq km (1998 est.)
Judicial branch Supreme Court
Labor force 400,000 (1996)
Labor force - by occupation agriculture 75%, industry, commerce, and services 19%, government 6%
Land boundaries total: 740 km

border countries: Senegal 740 km
Land use arable land: 25%

permanent crops: 0.5%

other: 74.5% (2001)
Languages English (official), Mandinka, Wolof, Fula, other indigenous vernaculars
Legal system based on a composite of English common law, Koranic law, and customary law; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations
Legislative branch unicameral National Assembly (53 seats; 48 elected by popular vote, five appointed by the president; members serve five-year terms)

elections: last held 17 January 2002 (next to be held NA January 2007)

election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - APRC 45, PDOIS 2, NRP 1,
Life expectancy at birth total population: 54.79 years

male: 52.76 years

female: 56.87 years (2004 est.)
Literacy definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 40.1%

male: 47.8%

female: 32.8% (2003 est.)
Location Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean and Senegal
Map references Africa
Maritime claims territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 18 nm

continental shelf: not specified

exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm
Merchant marine none (2004 est.)
Military branches Gambian National Army (GNA) (including Naval Unit), Presidential Guard
Military expenditures - dollar figure $900,000 (2003)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP 0.3% (2003)
Military manpower - availability males age 15-49: 350,256 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service males age 15-49: 176,733 (2004 est.)
National holiday Independence Day, 18 February (1965)
Nationality noun: Gambian(s)

adjective: Gambian
Natural hazards drought (rainfall has dropped by 30% in the last 30 years)
Natural resources fish
Net migration rate 1.57 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Political parties and leaders Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction or APRC [Yahya A. J. J. JAMMEH]; Gambian People's Party-Progressive People's Party-United Democratic Party or GPP-PPP-UDP Coalition [Ousainou DARBOE]; National Convention Party or NCP [Sheriff DIBBA]; National Reconciliation Party or NRP [Hamat N. K. BAH]; People's Democratic Organization for Independence and Socialism or PDOIS [Sidia JATTA]

note: in August 2001, an independent electoral commission allowed the reregistration of the GPP, NCP, and PPP, three parties banned since 1996
Political pressure groups and leaders NA
Population 1,546,848 (July 2004 est.)
Population below poverty line NA
Population growth rate 2.98% (2004 est.)
Ports and harbors Banjul
Radio broadcast stations AM 3, FM 2, shortwave 0 (2001)
Religions Muslim 90%, Christian 9%, indigenous beliefs 1%
Sex ratio at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 1.07 male(s)/female

total population: 1 male(s)/female (2004 est.)
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal
Telephone system general assessment: adequate; a packet switched data network is available

domestic: adequate network of microwave radio relay and open-wire

international: country code - 220; microwave radio relay links to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)
Telephones - main lines in use 38,400 (2002)
Telephones - mobile cellular 100,000 (2002)
Television broadcast stations 1 (government-owned) (1997)
Terrain flood plain of the Gambia River flanked by some low hills
Total fertility rate 5.46 children born/woman (2004 est.)
Unemployment rate NA (2002 est.)
Waterways 390 km (on River Gambia; small ocean-going vessels can reach 190 km) (2004)
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