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Countries > Djibouti Djibouti Flag

Languages   4 languages are spoken in Djibouti. We have 678 products available for 3 of those languages.

Capital: Djibouti
Population: 586,000
Djibouti Map


Location: Eastern Africa, bordering the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea, between Eritrea and Somalia

Geographic coordinates: 11 30 N, 43 00 E

Map references: Africa

total: 22,000 sq km
land: 21,980 sq km
water : 20 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Massachusetts

Land boundaries:
total: 508 km
border countries : Eritrea 113 km, Ethiopia 337 km, Somalia 58 km

Coastline: 314 km

Maritime claims:
contiguous zone : 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: desert; torrid, dry

Terrain: coastal plain and plateau separated by central mountains

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Asal -155 m
highest point : Mousa Alli 2,028 m

Natural resources: geothermal areas

Land use:
arable land : 0%
permanent crops: 0%
permanent pastures:0%
forests and woodland: 0%
other: 100% (1998 est.)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: earthquakes; droughts; occasional cyclonic disturbances from the Indian Ocean bring heavy rains and flash floods

Environment - current issues: inadequate supplies of potable water; desertification

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

Geography - note:strategic location near world's busiest shipping lanes and close to Arabian oilfields; terminus of rail traffic into Ethiopia; mostly wasteland; Lac Assal (Lake Assal) is the lowest point in Africa


Population: 472,810 (July 2002 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 42.6% (male 100,903; female 100,420)
15-64 years: 54.5% (male 135,409; female 122,209)
65 years and over: 2.9% (male 7,220; female 6,649) (2002 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.59% (2002 est.)

Birth rate: 40.33 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Death rate: 14.43 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 male(s)/female
15-64 years:1.11 male(s)/female
65 years and over :1.09 male(s)/female
total population: 1.06 male(s)/female (2002 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 99.7 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 51.6 years
male:49.73 years
female: 53.52 years (2002 est.)

Total fertility rate: 5.64 children born/woman (2002 est.)

noun: Djiboutian(s)
adjective: Djiboutian

Ethnic groups: Somali 60%, Afar 35%, French, Arab, Ethiopian, and Italian 5%

Religions: Muslim 94%, Christian 6%

Languages: French (official), Arabic (official), Somali, Afar

definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 46.2%
male : 60.3%
female: 32.7% (1995 est.)


Country name:
conventional long form: Republic of Djibouti
conventional short form: Djibouti
former: French Territory of the Afars and Issas, French Somaliland

Data code: DJ

Government type: republic

National capital: Djibouti

Administrative divisions: 5 districts (cercles, singular - cercle); 'Ali Sabih, Dikhil, Djibouti, Obock, Tadjoura

Independence: 27 June 1977 (from France)

National holiday: Independence Day, 27 June (1977)

Constitution: multiparty constitution approved in referendum 4 September 1992

Legal system: based on French civil law system, traditional practices, and Islamic law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal adult

Executive branch:
chief of state:President Ismail Omar GUELLEH (since 8 May 1999)
head of government: Prime Minister DILEITA Mohamed Dileita (since 4 March 2001)
cabinet : Council of Ministers responsible to the president
elections: president elected by popular vote for a six-year term; election last held 9 April 1999 (next to be held December 2002); prime minister appointed by the president
election results: Ismail Omar GUELLEH elected president; percent of vote - Ismail Omar GUELLEH 74.4%, IDRIS Moussa Ahmed 25.6%

Legislative branch: unicameral Chamber of Deputies or Chambre des Deputes (65 seats; members elected by popular vote for five-year terms)
elections: last held 19 December 1997 (next to be held NA December 2002)
election results: percent of vote - NA%; seats - RPP 64, FRUD 11; note - RPP (the ruling party) dominated the election

Judicial branch: Supreme Court (Cour Supreme)

Political parties and leaders: Democratic National Party or PND [ADEN Robleh Awaleh]; Democratic Renewal Party or PRD [Abdillahi HAMARITEH]; Front pour la Restauration de l'Unite Democratique or FRUD [Ali Mohamed DAOUD]; People's Progress Assembly or RPP (governing party) [Ismail Omar GUELLEH]

Political pressure groups and leaders:Movement for Unity and Democracy or MUD

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AFESD, AL, ECA, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGADD, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), Interpol, IOC, ITU, NAM, OAU, OIC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNMIH, UPU, WFTU, WHO, WMO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador ROBLE Olhaye Oudine
chancery: Suite 515, 1156 15th Street NW, Washington, DC 20005
telephone: [1] (202) 331-0270
FAX : [1] (202) 331-0302

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Donald YAMAMOTO
embassy: Plateau du Serpent, Boulevard Marechal Joffre, Djibouti
mailing address: B. P. 185, Djibouti
telephone : [253] 35 39 95
FAX: [253] 35 39 40

Flag description: two equal horizontal bands of light blue (top) and light green with a white isosceles triangle based on the hoist side bearing a red five-pointed star in the center


Economy - overview:The economy is based on service activities connected with the country's strategic location and status as a free trade zone in northeast Africa. Two-thirds of the inhabitants live in the capital city, the remainder being mostly nomadic herders. Scanty rainfall limits crop production to fruits and vegetables, and most food must be imported. Djibouti provides services as both a transit port for the region and an international transshipment and refueling center. It has few natural resources and little industry. The nation is, therefore, heavily dependent on foreign assistance to help support its balance of payments and to finance development projects. An unemployment rate of 50% continues to be a major problem. Inflation is not a concern, however, because of the fixed tie of the franc to the US dollar. Per capita consumption dropped an estimated 35% over the last seven years because of recession, civil war, and a high population growth rate (including immigrants and refugees). Faced with a multitude of economic difficulties, the government has fallen in arrears on long-term external debt and has been struggling to meet the stipulations of foreign aid donors. Another factor limiting growth is the negative impact on port activity now that Ethiopia has more trade route options

GDP: purchasing power parity - $586 million (2001 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:0% (2001 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,400 (2001 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture : 3%
services: 87% (2001 est.)

Inflation rate - consumer price index: 2% (2001 est.)

Labor force:
total: 282,000
by occupation: agriculture 75%, industry 11%, services 14% (1991 est.)

Unemployment rate: 50% (2000 est.)

revenues: $135 million
expenditures: $182 million, including capital expenditures of $NA (1999 est.)

Industries: limited to a few small-scale enterprises, such as dairy products and mineral-water bottling

Industrial production growth rate: 3% (1996 est.)

Electricity - capacity: 115,000 kW (1991)

Electricity - production: 180 million kWh (2000)

Electricity - consumption per capita: 167.4 million kWh (2000)

Agriculture - products: fruits, vegetables; goats, sheep, camels

total value: $260 million (f.o.b., 1999 est.)
commodities: reexports, hides and skins, coffee (in transit)
partners:Somalia 53%, Yemen 23%, Ethiopia 5% (1998)

total value: $440 million (f.o.b., 1999 est.)
commodities: $440 million (f.o.b., 1999 est.)
partners : France 13%, Ethiopia 12%, Italy 9%, Saudi Arabia 6%, UK 6% (1998)

Debt - external: $366 million (2002 est.)

Economic aid:
recipient : $36 million (2001)

Currency: 1 Djiboutian franc (DF) = 100 centimes

Exchange rates: Djiboutian francs (DF) per US$1 - 177.721 (fixed rate since 1973)

Fiscal year: calendar year


Telephones: 10,000 (2002)

Telephone system: telephone facilities in the city of Djibouti are adequate as are the microwave radio relay connections to outlying areas of the country
domestic: microwave radio relay network
international: submarine cable to Jiddah, Suez, Sicily, Marseilles, Colombo, and Singapore; satellite earth stations - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean) and 1 Arabsat; MEDARABTEL regional microwave radio relay telephone network

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 2, shortwave 0 (2001)

Radios: 52,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 1 (2002)

Televisions: 28,000 (1997)


total: 100 km (Djibouti segment of the Addis Ababa-Djibouti railroad)
note: Djibouti and Ethiopia plan to revitalize the century-old railroad that links their capitals by 2003 (2001 est.)
narrow gauge: 100 km 1.000-m gauge

total: 2,890 km
paved: 364 km
unpaved: 2,526 km (1996)

Ports and harbors: Djibouti

Merchant marine:
total : 1 cargo ship (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 1,369 GRT/3,030 DWT (1996 est.)

Airports: 12 (2001)

Airports - with paved runways:
over 3,047 m : 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 (2001)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 7
1,524 to 2,437 m : 3
914 to 1,523 m: 4 (1996 est.)


Military branches: Djibouti National Army (includes Navy and Air Force), National Security Force (Force Nationale de Securite), National Police Force

Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 103,569 (1997 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:
males : 60,751 (1997 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $26 million (1989)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: NA%

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international: none

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