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Liberia (2001)

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Liberia 2001 year

Administrative divisions 13 counties; Bomi, Bong, Grand Bassa, Grand Cape Mount, Grand Gedeh, Grand Kru, Lofa, Margibi, Maryland, Montserrado, Nimba, River Cess, Sinoe
Age structure 0-14 years:
43.21% (male 698,178; female 695,599)

15-64 years:
53.34% (male 840,103; female 880,403)

65 years and over:
3.45% (male 56,073; female 55,481) (2001 est.)
Agriculture - products rubber, coffee, cocoa, rice, cassava (tapioca), palm oil, sugarcane, bananas; sheep, goats; timber
Airports 46 (2000 est.)
Airports - with paved runways total:

over 3,047 m:

1,524 to 2,437 m:
1 (2000 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways total:

1,524 to 2,437 m:

914 to 1,523 m:

under 914 m:
36 (2000 est.)
Area total:
111,370 sq km

96,320 sq km

15,050 sq km
Area - comparative slightly larger than Tennessee
Background Seven years of civil strife were brought to a close in 1996 when free and open presidential and legislative elections were held. President TAYLOR now holds strong executive power with no real political opposition. The years of fighting coupled with the flight of most businesses have disrupted formal economic activity. A still unsettled domestic security situation has slowed the process of rebuilding the social and economic structure of this war-torn country.
Birth rate 46.55 births/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Budget revenues:

$NA, including capital expenditures of $NA
Capital Monrovia
Climate tropical; hot, humid; dry winters with hot days and cool to cold nights; wet, cloudy summers with frequent heavy showers
Coastline 579 km
Constitution 6 January 1986
Country name conventional long form:
Republic of Liberia

conventional short form:
Currency Liberian dollar (LRD)
Death rate 16.36 deaths/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Debt - external $3 billion (1999 est.)
Diplomatic representation from the US chief of mission:
Ambassador Bismarck MYRICK

111 United Nations Drive, P. O. Box 10-0098, Mamba Point, Monrovia

mailing address:
use embassy street address

[231] 226-370 through 226-380

[231] 226-148
Diplomatic representation in the US chief of mission:
Ambassador William BULL

5201 16th Street NW, Washington, DC 20011

[1] (202) 723-0437

[1] (202) 723-0436

consulate(s) general:
New York
Disputes - international large refugee population from civil war in Sierra Leone
Economic aid - recipient $200 million pledged (1998)
Economy - overview A civil war in 1989-96 destroyed much of Liberia's economy, especially the infrastructure in and around Monrovia. Many businessmen fled the country, taking capital and expertise with them. Some returned during 1997. Many will not return. Richly endowed with water, mineral resources, forests, and a climate favorable to agriculture, Liberia had been a producer and exporter of basic products, while local manufacturing, mainly foreign owned, had been small in scope. The democratically elected government, installed in August 1997, inherited massive international debts and currently relies on revenues from its maritime registry to provide the bulk of its foreign exchange earnings. The restoration of the infrastructure and the raising of incomes in this ravaged economy depend on the implementation of sound macro- and micro-economic policies of the new government, including the encouragement of foreign investment. Recent growth has been from a low base, and continued growth will require major policy successes.
Electricity - consumption 401.8 million kWh (1999)
Electricity - exports 0 kWh (1999)
Electricity - imports 0 kWh (1999)
Electricity - production 432 million kWh (1999)
Electricity - production by source fossil fuel:



0% (1999)
Elevation extremes lowest point:
Atlantic Ocean 0 m

highest point:
Mount Wuteve 1,380 m
Environment - current issues tropical rain forest subject to deforestation; soil erosion; loss of biodiversity; pollution of coastal waters from oil residue and raw sewage
Environment - international agreements party to:
Biodiversity, Desertification, Endangered Species, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94

signed, but not ratified:
Climate Change, Environmental Modification, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation
Ethnic groups indigenous African tribes 95% (including Kpelle, Bassa, Gio, Kru, Grebo, Mano, Krahn, Gola, Gbandi, Loma, Kissi, Vai, and Bella), Americo-Liberians 2.5% (descendants of immigrants from the US who had been slaves), Congo People 2.5% (descendants of immigrants from the Caribbean who had been slaves)
Exchange rates Liberian dollars per US dollar - 39.8100 (December 2000), 41.0483 (2000), 41.9025 (1999), 41.5075 (1998), 1.0000 (officially fixed rate 1940-97); market exchange rate: Liberian dollars per US dollar - 40 (December 1998), 50 (October 1995)

until December 1997, rates were based on a fixed relationship with the US dollar; beginning in January 1998, rates are market determined
Executive branch chief of state:
President Charles Ghankay TAYLOR (since 2 August 1997); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

head of government:
President Charles Ghankay TAYLOR (since 2 August 1997); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

Cabinet appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate

president elected by popular vote for a six-year term (renewable); election last held 19 July 1997 (next to be held NA July 2003)

election results:
Charles Ghankay TAYLOR elected president; percent of vote - Charles Ghankay TAYLOR (NPP) 75.3%, Ellen Johnson SIRLEAF (UP) 9.6%, Alhaji KROMAH (ALCOP) 4%, other 11.1%
Exports 0 kWh (1999)
Exports $55 million (f.o.b., 2000 est.)
Exports - commodities diamonds, iron ore, rubber, timber, coffee, cocoa
Exports - partners Belgium 53%, Switzerland 9%, US 6%, France 4% (1999)
Fiscal year calendar year
Flag description 11 equal horizontal stripes of red (top and bottom) alternating with white; there is a white five-pointed star on a blue square in the upper hoist-side corner; the design was based on the US flag
GDP purchasing power parity - $3.35 billion (2000 est.)
GDP - composition by sector agriculture:


30% (2000 est.)
GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $1,100 (2000 est.)
GDP - real growth rate 15% (2000 est.)
Geographic coordinates 6 30 N, 9 30 W
Highways total:
10,600 km

657 km

9,943 km

(there is major deterioration on all highways due to heavy rains and lack of maintenance) (1996 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%:

highest 10%:
Illicit drugs increasingly a transshipment point for Southeast and Southwest Asian heroin and South American cocaine for the European and US markets
Imports 0 kWh (1999)
Imports $170 million (f.o.b., 2000 est.)
Imports - commodities fuels, chemicals, machinery, transportation equipment, manufactured goods; rice and other foodstuffs
Imports - partners South Korea 30%, Italy 24%, Japan 15%, Germany 9% (1999)
Independence 26 July 1847
Industrial production growth rate NA
Industries rubber processing, palm oil processing, diamonds
Infant mortality rate 132.42 deaths/1,000 live births (2001 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 5% (2000 est.)
International organization participation ACP, AfDB, CCC, ECA, ECOWAS, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), Interpol, IOC, IOM, ITU, NAM, OAU, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) 1 (2000)
Irrigated land 20 sq km (1993 est.)
Judicial branch Supreme Court
Labor force - by occupation agriculture 70%, industry 8%, services 22% (1999 est.)
Land boundaries total:
1,585 km

border countries:
Guinea 563 km, Cote d'Ivoire 716 km, Sierra Leone 306 km
Land use arable land:

permanent crops:

permanent pastures:

forests and woodland:

19% (1993 est.)
Languages English 20% (official), some 20 ethnic group languages, of which a few can be written and are used in correspondence
Legal system dual system of statutory law based on Anglo-American common law for the modern sector and customary law based on unwritten tribal practices for indigenous sector
Legislative branch bicameral National Assembly consists of the Senate (26 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve nine-year terms) and the House of Representatives (64 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve six-year terms)

Senate - last held 19 July 1997 (next to be held in NA 2006); House of Representatives - last held 19 July 1997 (next to be held in NA 2003)

election results:
Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - NPP 21, UP 3, ALCOP 2; House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - NPP 49, UP 7, ALCOP 3, Alliance of Political Parties 2, UPP 2, LPP 1; note - the Alliance of Political Parties was a coalition of the LAP and the Liberia Unification Party or LUP
Life expectancy at birth total population:
51.41 years

49.96 years

52.91 years (2001 est.)
Literacy definition:
age 15 and over can read and write

total population:


22.4% (1995 est.)

these figures are increasing because of the improving school system
Location Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Cote d'Ivoire and Sierra Leone
Map references Africa
Maritime claims territorial sea:
200 NM
Merchant marine total:
1,478 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 49,456,361 GRT/76,620,648 DWT

ships by type:
barge carrier 3, bulk 324, cargo 97, chemical tanker 163, combination bulk 20, combination ore/oil 38, container 245, liquefied gas 97, multi-functional large-load carrier 4, passenger 24, petroleum tanker 310, refrigerated cargo 74, roll on/roll off 19, short-sea passenger 3, specialized tanker 12, vehicle carrier 45

includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Argentina 8, Australia 1, Ashmore and Cartier Islands 1, Austria 5, Bermuda 5, Belgium 5, Burma 1, Brazil 8, Canada 1, China 28, Chile 7, Costa Rica 8, Cyprus 27, Denmark 4, Ecuador 1, Germany 117, Greece 83, Hong Kong 54, Croatia 9, Indonesia 2, India 8, Israel 1, Italy 8, Japan 85, South Korea 8, Latvia 15, Monaco 28, Mexico 6, Malaysia 1, Nigeria 1, Netherlands 7, Norway 86, Netherlands Antilles 1, NZ 1, Poland 2, Portugal 2, Philippines 1, Russia 22, Saudi Arabia 20, South Africa 1, Slovenia 1, Singapore 30, Spain 1, Sweden 8, Switzerland 23, UAE 5, Taiwan 10, UK 15, US 85, Uruguay 1, Vietnam 1 (2000 est.)
Military branches Army, Air Force, Navy
Military expenditures - dollar figure $1 million (FY98)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP 2% (FY98)
Military manpower - availability males age 15-49:
715,753 (2001 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service males age 15-49:
385,460 (2001 est.)
National holiday Independence Day, 26 July (1847)
Nationality noun:

Natural hazards dust-laden harmattan winds blow from the Sahara (December to March)
Natural resources iron ore, timber, diamonds, gold, hydropower
Net migration rate -11 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2001 est.)

by the end of 1999, all Liberian refugees, who had fled the domestic strife, were assumed to have returned
Political parties and leaders All Liberia Coalition Party or ALCOP [Lusinee KAMARA]; Liberian Action Party or LAP [Cletus WOTORSON]; Liberian National Union or LINU [Henry MONIBA, chairman]; Liberian People's Party or LPP [Togba-Nah TIPOTEH, chairman]; National Democratic Party of Liberia or NDPL [Isaac DAKINAH]; National Patriotic Party or NPP [Charles Ghankay TAYLOR] - governing party; People's Progressive Party or PPP [Chea CHEAPOO, chairman]; Reformation Alliance Party or RAP [Henry Boimah FAHNBULLEH, chairman]; True Whig Party or TWP [Rudolph SHERMAN, chairman]; United People's Party or UPP [Gabriel Baccus MATTHEWS, chairman]; Unity Party or UP [Charles Clarke]
Political pressure groups and leaders NA
Population 3,225,837 (July 2001 est.)
Population below poverty line 80%
Population growth rate 1.92% (2001 est.)
Ports and harbors Buchanan, Greenville, Harper, Monrovia
Radio broadcast stations AM 0, FM 6, shortwave 4 (1999)
Radios 790,000 (1997)
Railways total:
490 km (328 km single track); note - three rail systems owned and operated by foreign steel and financial interests in conjunction with the Liberian Government; one of these, the Lamco Railroad, closed in 1989 after iron ore production ceased; the other two were shut down by the civil war; large sections of the rail lines have been dismantled; approximately 60 km of railroad track was exported for scrap

standard gauge:
345 km 1.435-m gauge

narrow gauge:
145 km 1.067-m gauge
Religions indigenous beliefs 40%, Christian 40%, Muslim 20%
Sex ratio at birth:
1.03 male(s)/female

under 15 years:
1 male(s)/female

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

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

total population:
0.98 male(s)/female (2001 est.)
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal
Telephone system general assessment:
telephone and telegraph service via microwave radio relay network; main center is Monrovia


satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)
Telephones - main lines in use 6,000 (1997)
Telephones - mobile cellular 0 (1995)
Television broadcast stations 2 (plus four low-power repeaters) (2000)
Terrain mostly flat to rolling coastal plains rising to rolling plateau and low mountains in northeast
Total fertility rate 6.36 children born/woman (2001 est.)
Unemployment rate 70%
Waterways none
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