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Countries > Burundi Burundi Flag

Languages   3 languages are spoken in Burundi. We have 928 products available for those languages.

Capital: Bujumbura
Population: 5,936,000
Description: Rundi is spoken by the entire population. It is co-official with French. Swahili serves as a commercial language.
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Burundi Map


Current issues: in a number of waves since October 1993, hundreds of thousands of refugees have fled the ethnic violence between the Hutu and Tutsi factions in Burundi and crossed into Rwanda, Tanzania, and Democratic Republic of the Congo, formerly Zaire; since October 1996, an estimated 92,000 Burundi Hutus who fled to Zaire have been forced to return to Burundi by Tutsi rebel forces in Zaire, leaving an estimated 35,000 still dispersed there; in Burundi, the ethnic violence between the Hutus and the Tutsis continued in 1996, causing an estimated additional 150,000 Burundi Hutus to flee to Tanzania, thus raising their numbers in that country to about 250,000


Location: Central Africa, east of Democratic Republic of the Congo

Geographic coordinates: 3 30 S, 30 00 E

Map references: Africa

total: 27,830 sq km
land: 25,650 sq km
water: 2,180 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Maryland

Land boundaries:
total: 974 km
border countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo 233 km, Rwanda 290 km, Tanzania 451 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: equatorial; high plateau with considerable altitude variation (772 m to 2,760 m); average annual temperature varies with altitude from 23 to 17 degrees centigrade but is generally moderate as the average altitude is about 1,700 m; average annual rainfall is about 150 cm; wet seasons from February to May and September to November, and dry seasons from June to August and December to January

Terrain: hilly and mountainous, dropping to a plateau in east, some plains

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Lake Tanganyika 772 m
highest point: Mount Heha 2,760 m

Natural resources: nickel, uranium, rare earth oxides, peat, cobalt, copper, platinum (not yet exploited), vanadium

Land use:
arable land: 44%
permanent crops: 9%
permanent pastures : 36%
forests and woodland: 3%
other : 8% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 140 sq km (1993 est.)

Natural hazards: flooding, landslides

Environment - current issues: soil erosion as a result of overgrazing and the expansion of agriculture into marginal lands; deforestation (little forested land remains because of uncontrolled cutting of trees for fuel); habitat loss threatens wildlife populations

Environment - international agreements:
party to: Endangered Species
signed, but not ratified : Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Law of the Sea, Nuclear Test Ban

Geography - note: landlocked; straddles crest of the Nile-Congo watershed


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 2002 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 46.5% (male 1,497,865; female 1,466,455)
15-64 years :50.7% (male 1,592,253; female 1,640,254)
65 years and over: 2.8% (male 71,915; female 104,260) (2002 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.36% (2002 est.)

Birth rate: 39.87 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Death rate: 16.3 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years : 1.02 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.97 male(s)/female
65 years and over:0.69 male(s)/female
total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2002 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 69.97 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 45.94 years
male:45.08 years
female : 46.83 years (2002 est.)

Total fertility rate:6.07 children born/woman (2002 est.)

noun: Burundian(s)
adjective: Burundi

Ethnic groups: Hutu (Bantu) 85%, Tutsi (Hamitic) 14%, Twa (Pygmy) 1%, Europeans 3,000, South Asians 2,000

Religions: Christian 67% (Roman Catholic 62%, Protestant 5%), indigenous beliefs 32%, Muslim 1%

Languages: Kirundi (official), French (official), Swahili (along Lake Tanganyika and in the Bujumbura area)

definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 35.3%
male: 49.3%
female: 22.5% (1995 est.)


Country name:
conventional long form: Republic of Burundi
conventional short form: Burundi
local long form: Republika y'u Burundi
local short form : Burundi

Data code: BY

Government type: republic

National capital: Bujumbura

Administrative divisions:16 provinces; Bubanza, Bujumbura, Bururi, Cankuzo, Cibitoke, Gitega, Karuzi, Kayanza, Kirundo, Makamba, Muramvya, Muyinga, Mwaro, Ngozi, Rutana, Ruyigi

Independence: 1 July 1962 (from UN trusteeship under Belgian administration)

National holiday: Independence Day, 1 July (1962)

Constitution: 13 March 1992; provides for establishment of a plural political system

Legal system: based on German and Belgian civil codes and customary law; does not accept compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: NA years of age; universal adult

Executive branch:
chief of state: PPresident Pierre BUYOYA (a Tutsi, was sworn in as president of a transition government on 1 November 2001; he is scheduled to hold office for 18 months before transferring power to his vice president, a Hutu); Vice President Domitien NDAYIZEYE (since 1 November 2001)
head of government: President Pierre BUYOYA (a Tutsi, was sworn in as president of a transition government on 1 November 2001; he is scheduled to hold office for 18 months before transferring power to his vice president, a Hutu); Vice President Domitien NDAYIZEYE (since 1 November 2001)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by prime minister
elections : NA; current president assumed power following a coup on 25 July 1996 in which former President NTIBANTUNGANYA was overthrown

Legislative branch: bicameral, consists of a National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (expanded from 121 to approximately 140 seats under the transitional government inaugurated 1 November 2001; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) and a Senate (54 seats; term length is undefined, the current senators will likely serve out the three-year transition period)
elections: laslast held 29 June 1993 (next was scheduled to be held in 1998, but were suspended by presidential decree in 1996; elections are planned to follow the completion of the three-year transitional government)
election results: percent of vote by party - FRODEBU 71.04%, UPRONA 21.4%, other 7.56%; seats by party - FRODEBU 65, UPRONA 16, civilians 27, other parties 13.

Judicial branch: Supreme Court or Cour Supreme

Political parties and leaders: the two national, mainstream, governing parties are: Unity for National Progress or UPRONA [Luc RUKINGAMA, president]; Burundi Democratic Front or FRODEBU [Jean MINANI, president] note: a multiparty system was introduced after 1998, included are: Burundi African Alliance for the Salvation or ABASA [Terrence NSANZE]; Rally for Democracy and Economic and Social Development or RADDES [Joseph NZENZIMANA]; Party for National Redress or PARENA [Jean-Baptiste BAGAZA]; People's Reconciliation Party or PRP [Mathias HITIMANA]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Loosely organized Hutu and Tutsi militias, often affiliated with Hutu and Tutsi extremist parties or subordinate to government security forces

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, CCC, CEEAC, CEPGL, ECA, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), Interpol, IOC, ISO (subscriber), ITU, NAM, OAU, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Thomas NDIKUMANA
chancery: Suite 212, 2233 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20007
telephone: [1] (202) 342-2574

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Mary Carlin YATES
embassy : Avenue des Etats-Unis, Bujumbura
mailing address: B. P. 1720, Bujumbura
telephone : [257] (2) 23454
FAX: [257] (2) 22926

Flag description: divided by a white diagonal cross into red panels (top and bottom) and green panels (hoist side and outer side) with a white disk superimposed at the center bearing three red six-pointed stars outlined in green arranged in a triangular design (one star above, two stars below).


Economy - overview: Burundi is a landlocked, resource-poor country with an underdeveloped manufacturing sector. The economy is predominantly agricultural with roughly 90% of the population dependent on subsistence agriculture. Its economic health depends on the coffee crop, which accounts for 80% of foreign exchange earnings. The ability to pay for imports therefore rests largely on the vagaries of the climate and the international coffee market. Since October 1993 the nation has suffered from massive ethnic-based violence which has resulted in the death of more than 200,000 persons and the displacement of about 800,000 others. Only one in four children go to school, and more than one in ten adults has HIV/AIDS. Foods, medicines, and electricity remain in short supply. Doubts regarding the sustainability of peace continue to impede development. A Geneva donors' conference in November 2001 brought $800 million in pledges, and an IMF-staff-monitored program could lead to a further agreement in 2002.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $3.7 billion (2001 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 1.4% (2001 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $600 (2001 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 50%
industry: 18%
services:32% (2001 est.)

Inflation rate - consumer price index: 14% (2001 est.)

Labor force:
total: 1.9 million
by occupation: agriculture 93.0%, government 4.0%, industry and commerce 1.5%, services 1.5% (1983 est.)

Unemployment rate: NA%

revenues: $125 million
expenditures: $176 million, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000 est.)

Industries: light consumer goods such as blankets, shoes, soap; assembly of imported components; public works construction; food processing

Industrial production growth rate: 6.3% (1999 est.)

Electricity - capacity: 55,000 kW (1991)

Electricity - production: 148 million kWh (2000)
note: imports some electricity from Democratic Republic of the Congo

Electricity - consumption per capita: 166.64 million kWh (2000)

Agriculture - products: coffee, cotton, tea, corn, sorghum, sweet potatoes, bananas, manioc (tapioca); meat, milk, hides

total value: $24 million (f.o.b., 2001 est.)
commodities: coffee 81%, tea, cotton, hides
partners : EU 52.5%, US 11.5%, Kenya 11.5%, Switzerland 4.9% (2000 est.)

total value: $125 million (f.o.b., 2001 est.)
commodities: capital goods 26%, petroleum products, foodstuffs, consumer goods
partners: EU 37.6%, Tanzania 10.3%, Zambia 4.3%, India 3.4%, China 3.4% (2000 est.)

Debt - external: $1.12 billion (2001 est.)

Economic aid:
recipient: $74 million (1999)

Currency: 1 Burundi franc (FBu) = 100 centimes

Exchange rates: Burundi francs (FBu) per US$1 - 268.13 (November 1995), 249.76 (1995), 252.66 (1994), 242.78 (1993), 208.30 (1992), 181.51 (1991)

Fiscal year: calendar year


Telephones: 20,000 (2000)

Telephone system: primitive system
domestic: sparse system of open wire, radiotelephone communications, and low-capacity microwave radio relay
international : satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 0, FM 4, shortwave 1 (2001)

Radios: 440,000 (2001)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (2001)

Televisions: 25,000 (1997)


Railways: 0 km

total: 14,480 km
paved : 1,028 km
unpaved: 13,452 km (1996)

Waterways: Lake Tanganyika

Ports and harbors: Bujumbura

Airports: 7 (2001)

Airports - with paved runways:
total : 1
over 3,047 m: 1 (2001)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 6
914 to 1,523 m: 3
under 914 m: 3 (2001)


Military branches: Army (includes naval and air units), paramilitary Gendarmerie

Military manpower - military age: 16 years of age

Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49:1,439,032 (2002 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:
males: 752,584 (2002 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
males : 79,360 (2002 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $36.9 million (FY01)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 5.3% (FY01)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international:Tutsi, Hutu, and other conflicting ethnic groups, political rebels, and various government forces continue fighting in Great Lakes region, transcending the boundaries of Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda

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