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Countries > Zimbabwe Zimbabwe Flag

Languages   5 languages are spoken in Zimbabwe. We have 40 products available for 3 of those languages.

Capital: Harare
Population: 11,500,000
Zimbabwe Map


Location: Southern Africa, northeast of Botswana

Geographic coordinates: 20 00 S, 30 00 E

Map references: Africa

total : 390,580 sq km
land: 386,670 sq km
water: 3,910 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly larger than Montana

Land boundaries:
total: 3,066 km
border countries: Botswana 813 km, Mozambique 1,231 km, South Africa 225 km, Zambia 797 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: tropical; moderated by altitude; rainy season (November to March)

Terrain: mostly high plateau with higher central plateau (high veld); mountains in east

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: junction of the Lundi and Savi rivers 162 m
highest point: Inyangani 2,592 m

Natural resources: coal, chromium ore, asbestos, gold, nickel, copper, iron ore, vanadium, lithium, tin, platinum group metals

Land use:
arable land : 7%
permanent crops: 0%
permanent pastures: 13%
forests and woodland: 23%
other: 57% (1998 est.)

Irrigated land: 1,170 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: recurring droughts; floods and severe storms are rare

Environment - current issues: deforestation; soil erosion; land degradation; air and water pollution; the black rhinoceros herd - once the largest concentration of the species in the world - has been significantly reduced by poaching

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

Geography - note: landlocked


Population: 11,376,676 (July 2002 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 37.9% (male 2,178,073; female 2,128,287)
15-64 years: 58.4% (male 3,376,850; female 3,268,315)
65 years and over :3.7% (male 213,286; female 211,865) (2002 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.05% (2002 est.)

Birth rate: 24.59 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Death rate: 24.06 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Net migration rate: NEGL migrant(s)/1,000 population
note: there is a small but steady flow of Zimbabweans into South Africa in search of better paid employment

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
15-64 years:1.03 male(s)/female
65 years and over :1.01 male(s)/female
total population:1.03 male(s)/female (2002 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 62.97 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 36.5 years
male:37.87 years
female :35.1 years (2002 est.)

Total fertility rate:3.21 children born/woman (2002 est.)

noun : Zimbabwean(s)
adjective: Zimbabwean

Ethnic groups: African 98% (Shona 71%, Ndebele 16%, other 11%), white 1%, mixed and Asian 1%

Religions: syncretic (part Christian, part indigenous beliefs) 50%, Christian 25%, indigenous beliefs 24%, Muslim and other 1%

Languages: English (official), Shona, Sindebele (the language of the Ndebele, sometimes called Ndebele), numerous but minor tribal dialects

definition: age 15 and over can read and write in English
total population: 85%
male: 90%
female: 80% (1995 est.)


Country name:
conventional long form : Republic of Zimbabwe
conventional short form: Zimbabwe
former: Southern Rhodesia

Data code: ZI

Government type: parliamentary democracy

National capital: Harare

Administrative divisions: 8 provinces and 2 cities* with provincial status; Bulawayo*, Harare*, Manicaland, Mashonaland Central, Mashonaland East, Mashonaland West, Masvingo (Victoria), Matabeleland North, Matabeleland South, Midlands

Independence: 18 April 1980 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day, 18 April (1980)

Constitution: 21 December 1979

Legal system: mixture of Roman-Dutch and English common law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
chief of state: Executive President Robert Gabriel MUGABE (since 31 December 1987); Co-Vice Presidents Simon Vengai MUZENDA (since 31 December 1987) and Joseph MSIKA (since 23 December 1999); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
head of government : Executive President Robert Gabriel MUGABE (since 31 December 1987); Co-Vice Presidents Simon Vengai MUZENDA (since 31 December 1987) and Joseph MSIKA (since 23 December 1999); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
cabinet :Cabinet appointed by the president; responsible to the House of Assembly
elections: presidential candidates nominated with a nomination paper signed by at least 10 registered voters (at least one from each province) and elected by popular vote; election last held 9-11 March 2002 (next to be held NA March 2006); co-vice presidents appointed by the president
election results:Robert Gabriel MUGABE reelected president; percent of vote - Robert Gabriel MUGABE 56.2%, Morgan TSVANGIRAI 41.9%

Legislative branch:unicameral parliament, called House of Assembly (150 seats - 120 elected by popular vote for five-year terms, 12 nominated by the president, 10 occupied by traditional chiefs chosen by their peers, and 8 occupied by provincial governors appointed by the president)
elections:last held 24-25 June 2000 (next to be held NA 2005)
election results: percent of vote by party - ZANU-PF 47.2%, MDC 45.6%, ZANU-Ndonga 0.7%, United Parties 0.7%; seats by party - ZANU-PF 63, MDC 56, ZANU-Ndonga 1

Judicial branch: Supreme Court

Political parties and leaders: Movement for Democratic Change or MDC [Morgan TSVANGIRAI]; United Parties [Abel MUZOREWA]; Zimbabwe African National Union-Ndonga or ZANU-Ndonga [leader NA]; Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front or ZANU-PF [Robert Gabriel MUGABE]; Zimbabwe African Peoples Union or ZAPU [Paul SIWELA]

International organization participation: ACP, AfDB, C, CCC, ECA, FAO, G-15, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO, ITU, NAM, OAU, PCA, SADC, UN, UNAVEM III, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Simbi Veke MUBAKO
chancery: 1608 New Hampshire Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20009
telephone: [1] (202) 332-7100
FAX : [1] (202) 483-9326

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Joseph G. SULLIVAN
embassy: 172 Herbert Chitepo Avenue, Harare
mailing address: P. O. Box 3340, Harare
telephone : [263] (4) 794521
FAX: [263] (4) 796488

Flag description: seven equal horizontal bands of green, yellow, red, black, red, yellow, and green with a white equilateral triangle edged in black based on the hoist side; a yellow Zimbabwe bird is superimposed on a red five-pointed star in the center of the triangle


Economy - overview:The government of Zimbabwe faces a wide variety of difficult economic problems as it struggles to consolidate earlier moves to develop a market-oriented economy. Its involvement in the war in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, for example, has already drained hundreds of millions of dollars from the economy. Badly needed support from the IMF has been suspended because of the country's failure to meet budgetary goals. Inflation rose from an annual rate of 32% in 1998 to 59% in 1999, to 60% in 2000, and to 100% by yearend 2001. The economy is being steadily weakened by excessive government deficits, AIDS, and rampant inflation. The government's land reform program, characterized by chaos and violence, has derailed the commercial sector, the traditional source of exports and foreign exchange and the provider of 400,000 jobs. Distribution of income is extremely unequal.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $28 billion (2001 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: -6.5% (2001 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $2,450 (2001 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 11%
industry: 14%
services: 75% (2000 est.)

Inflation rate - consumer price index: 100% (2001)

Labor force:
total: 5.5 million (2000 est.)
by occupation: aagriculture 66%, services 24%, industry 10% (1996 est.)

Unemployment rate: 60% (2001 est.)

revenues: $2.5 billion
expenditures : $2.6 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000 est.)

Industries: mining (coal, clay, numerous metallic and nonmetallic ores), copper, steel, nickel, tin, wood products, cement, chemicals, fertilizer, clothing and footwear, foodstuffs, beverages

Industrial production growth rate: -10% (2001 est.)

Electricity - capacity: 2.15 million kW (1994)

Electricity - production: 6.425 billion kWh (2000)

Electricity - consumption per capita: 10.475 billion kWh (2000)

Agriculture - products: corn, cotton, tobacco, wheat, coffee, sugarcane, peanuts; cattle, sheep, goats, pigs

total value: $2.1 billion (f.o.b., 2001 est.)
commodities: agricultural 47% (tobacco 31%), manufactures 27%, gold 12%, textiles 8%, ferrochrome 6% (1994 est.)
partners: South Africa 12.1%, UK 8.5%, Japan 7.7%, Germany 6.1%, China 5.4% (2000)

total value: $1.5 billion (f.o.b., 2001 est.) Imports - commodities:
commodities: machinery and transportation equipment 41%, other manufactures 16%, chemicals 16%, fuels 10% (1994 est.)
partners: South Africa 46.3%, UK 7.2%, Germany 2.5%, US 2.8%, Japan 2.5% (2000 est.)

Debt - external: $5 billion (2001 est.)

Economic aid:
recipient: $200 million (2000 est.)

Currency: 1 Zimbabwean dollar (ZWD) = 100 cents

Exchange rates: Zimbabwean dollars per US dollar - 54.9451 (December 2001), 54.9451 (2001), 43.2900 (2000), 38.3142 (1999), 21.4133 (1998), 11.8906 (1997)

Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June


Telephones: 212,000 (in addition, there are about 20,000 fixed telephones in wireless local loop connections) (1997)

Telephone system: system was once one of the best in Africa, but now suffers from poor maintenance; more than 100,000 outstanding requests for connection despite an equally large number of installed but unused main lines
domestic: consists of microwave radio relay links, open-wire lines, radiotelephone communication stations, fixed wireless local loop installations, and a substantial mobile cellular network; Internet connection is available in Harare and planned for all major towns and for some of the smaller ones
international: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat; two international digital gateway exchanges (in Harare and Gweru)

Radio broadcast stations: AM 7, FM 20 (plus 17 repeater stations), shortwave 1 (1998)

Radios: 1.14 million (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 16 (1997)

Televisions: 370,000 (1997)


total : 3,077 km
narrow gauge: 3,077 km 1.067-m gauge (313 km electrified; 42 km double-tracked) (2001 est.)

total: 18,338 km
paved: 8,692 km
unpaved : 9,646 km (2002)

Waterways: the Mazoe and Zambezi rivers are used for transporting chrome ore from Harare to Mozambique

Pipelines: petroleum products 212 km

Ports and harbors: Binga, Kariba

Airports: 454 (2001)

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 17
over 3,047 m: 3
2,438 to 3,047 m : 2
1,524 to 2,437 m:4
914 to 1,523 m: 8 (2001)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total : 437
1,524 to 2,437 m: 4
914 to 1,523 m:209
under 914 m: 224 (2001)


Military branches: Zimbabwe National Army, Air Force of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe Republic Police (includes Police Support Unit, Paramilitary Police)

Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 3,057,381 (2002 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:
males : 1,898,383 (2002 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $350.6 million (FY01)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 3.8% (FY01)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international: quadripoint with Botswana, Namibia, and Zambia is in disagreement

Illicit drugs: significant transit point for African cannabis and South Asian heroin, mandrax, and methamphetamines destined for the South African and European markets

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