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 Transnational Issues

This page was last updated on 18 January, 2007

Map of Guinea

Legend: DefinitionDefinition Field ListingField Listing Rank OrderRank Order
   Introduction    Guinea Top of Page
Definition Field Listing
Guinea has had only two presidents since gaining its independence from France in 1958. Lansana CONTE came to power in 1984 when the military seized the government after the death of the first president, Sekou TOURE. Guinea did not hold democratic elections until 1993 when Gen. CONTE (head of the military government) was elected president of the civilian government. He was reelected in 1998 and again in 2003. Unrest in Sierra Leone and Liberia has spilled over into Guinea on several occasions over the past decade, threatening stability and creating humanitarian emergencies. In 2006, declining economic conditions prompted two massive strikes that sparked urban unrest in many Guinean cities.
   Geography    Guinea Top of Page
Definition Field Listing
Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Guinea-Bissau and Sierra Leone
Geographic coordinates:
Definition Field Listing
11 00 N, 10 00 W
Map references:
Definition Field Listing
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 245,857 sq km
land: 245,857 sq km
water: 0 sq km
Area - comparative:
Definition Field Listing
slightly smaller than Oregon
Land boundaries:
Definition Field Listing
total: 3,399 km
border countries: Cote d'Ivoire 610 km, Guinea-Bissau 386 km, Liberia 563 km, Mali 858 km, Senegal 330 km, Sierra Leone 652 km
Definition Field Listing
320 km
Maritime claims:
Definition Field Listing
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Definition Field Listing
generally hot and humid; monsoonal-type rainy season (June to November) with southwesterly winds; dry season (December to May) with northeasterly harmattan winds
Definition Field Listing
generally flat coastal plain, hilly to mountainous interior
Elevation extremes:
Definition Field Listing
lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Mont Nimba 1,752 m
Natural resources:
Definition Field Listing
bauxite, iron ore, diamonds, gold, uranium, hydropower, fish, salt
Land use:
Definition Field Listing
arable land: 4.47%
permanent crops: 2.64%
other: 92.89% (2005)
Irrigated land:
Definition Field Listing
950 sq km (2003)
Natural hazards:
Definition Field Listing
hot, dry, dusty harmattan haze may reduce visibility during dry season
Environment - current issues:
Definition Field Listing
deforestation; inadequate supplies of potable water; desertification; soil contamination and erosion; overfishing, overpopulation in forest region; poor mining practices have led to environmental damage
Environment - international agreements:
Definition Field Listing
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note:
Definition Field Listing
the Niger and its important tributary the Milo have their sources in the Guinean highlands
   People    Guinea Top of Page
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
9,690,222 (July 2006 est.)
Age structure:
Definition Field Listing
0-14 years: 44.4% (male 2,171,733/female 2,128,027)
15-64 years: 52.5% (male 2,541,140/female 2,542,847)
65 years and over: 3.2% (male 134,239/female 172,236) (2006 est.)
Median age:
Definition Field Listing
total: 17.7 years
male: 17.4 years
female: 17.9 years (2006 est.)
Population growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
2.63% (2006 est.)
Birth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
41.76 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Death rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
15.48 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Net migration rate:
Definition Field Listing
0 migrant(s)/1,000 population
note: as a result of conflict in neighboring countries, Guinea is host to approximately 141,500 refugees from Cote d'Ivoire, Liberia, and Sierra Leone (2006 est.)
Sex ratio:
Definition Field Listing
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/female
total population: 1 male(s)/female (2006 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 90 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 95.16 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 84.69 deaths/1,000 live births (2006 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total population: 49.5 years
male: 48.34 years
female: 50.7 years (2006 est.)
Total fertility rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
5.79 children born/woman (2006 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
3.2% (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
140,000 (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
9,000 (2003 est.)
Major infectious diseases:
Definition Field Listing
degree of risk: very high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: malaria and yellow fever are high risks in some locations
water contact disease: schistosomiasis
respiratory disease: meningococcal meningitis
aerosolized dust or soil contact disease: Lassa fever (2005)
Definition Field Listing
noun: Guinean(s)
adjective: Guinean
Ethnic groups:
Definition Field Listing
Peuhl 40%, Malinke 30%, Soussou 20%, smaller ethnic groups 10%
Definition Field Listing
Muslim 85%, Christian 8%, indigenous beliefs 7%
Definition Field Listing
French (official); note - each ethnic group has its own language
Definition Field Listing
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 35.9%
male: 49.9%
female: 21.9% (1995 est.)
   Government    Guinea Top of Page
Country name:
Definition Field Listing
conventional long form: Republic of Guinea
conventional short form: Guinea
local long form: Republique de Guinee
local short form: Guinee
former: French Guinea
Government type:
Definition Field Listing
Definition Field Listing
name: Conakry
geographic coordinates: 9 31 N, 13 43 W
time difference: UTC 0 (5 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions:
Definition Field Listing
33 prefectures and 1 special zone (zone special)*; Beyla, Boffa, Boke, Conakry*, Coyah, Dabola, Dalaba, Dinguiraye, Dubreka, Faranah, Forecariah, Fria, Gaoual, Gueckedou, Kankan, Kerouane, Kindia, Kissidougou, Koubia, Koundara, Kouroussa, Labe, Lelouma, Lola, Macenta, Mali, Mamou, Mandiana, Nzerekore, Pita, Siguiri, Telimele, Tougue, Yomou
Definition Field Listing
2 October 1958 (from France)
National holiday:
Definition Field Listing
Independence Day, 2 October (1958)
Definition Field Listing
23 December 1990 (Loi Fundamentale)
Legal system:
Definition Field Listing
based on French civil law system, customary law, and decree; legal codes currently being revised; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations
Definition Field Listing
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
Definition Field Listing
chief of state: President Lansana CONTE (head of military government since 5 April 1984, elected president 19 December 1993)
head of government: vacant; note - Prime Minister Cellou Dalein DIALLO was dismissed on 5 April 2006
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president
elections: president elected by popular vote for a seven-year term (no term limits); candidate must receive a majority of the votes cast to be elected president; election last held 21 December 2003 (next to be held December 2010); the prime minister is appointed by the president
election results: Lansana CONTE reelected president; percent of vote - Lansana CONTE (PUP) 95.3%, Mamadou Boye BARRY (UPR) 4.6%
Legislative branch:
Definition Field Listing
unicameral People's National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale Populaire (114 seats; members are elected by direct, popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections: last held 30 June 2002 (next to be held in 2007)
election results: percent of vote by party - PUP 61.6%, UPR 26.6%, other 11.8%; seats by party - PUP 85, UPR 20, other 9
Judicial branch:
Definition Field Listing
Court of Appeal or Cour d'Appel
Political parties and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
Democratic Party of Guinea-African Democratic Rally or PDG-RDA [El Hadj Ismael Mohamed Gassim GUSHEIN]; Dyama; National Union for Progress or UPN [Mamadou Bhoye BARRY]; Party for Unity and Progress or PUP [Lansana CONTE] (the governing party); People's Party of Guinea or PPG [Charles Pascal TOLNO]; Rally for the Guinean People or RPG [Alpha CONDE]; Union of Democratic Forces of Guinea or UFDG [Mamadou BAH]; Union of Republican Forces or UFR [Sidya TOURE]; Union for Progress of Guinea or UPG [Jean-Marie DORE, secretary-general]; Union for Progress and Renewal or UPR [Ousmane BAH]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
Labor Union of Guinean Workers - National Confederation of Guinean Workers or USTG-NCTG Alliance [Ibrahima FOFANA]; Student and teacher unions
International organization participation:
Definition Field Listing
Diplomatic representation in the US:
Definition Field Listing
chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant)
chancery: 2112 Leroy Place NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 986-4300
FAX: [1] (202) 478-3800
Diplomatic representation from the US:
Definition Field Listing
chief of mission: Ambassador Jackson C. MCDONALD
embassy: Koloma, Conakry, east of Hamdallaye Circle
mailing address: B. P. 603, Transversale No. 2, Centre Administratif de Koloma, Commune de Ratoma, Conakry
telephone: [224] 30-42-08-61
FAX: [224] 30-42-08-73
Flag description:
Definition Field Listing
three equal vertical bands of red (hoist side), yellow, and green; uses the popular pan-African colors of Ethiopia
   Economy    Guinea Top of Page
Economy - overview:
Definition Field Listing
Guinea possesses major mineral, hydropower, and agricultural resources, yet remains an underdeveloped nation. The country possesses almost half of the world's bauxite reserves and is the second-largest bauxite producer. The mining sector accounts for over 70% of exports. Long-run improvements in government fiscal arrangements, literacy, and the legal framework are needed if the country is to move out of poverty. Fighting along the Sierra Leonean and Liberian borders, as well as refugee movements, have caused major economic disruptions, aggravating a loss in investor confidence. Panic buying has created food shortages and inflation and caused riots in local markets. Guinea is trying to reengage with the IMF and World Bank, which cut off most assistance in 2003. Growth rose slightly in 2006, primarily due to increases in global demand and commodity prices on world markets, but the standard of living fell. The Guinea franc depreciated sharply as the prices for basic necessities like food and fuel rose beyond the reach of most Guineans. Dissatisfaction with economic conditions prompted nationwide strikes in February and June 2006.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$19.4 billion (2006 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate):
Definition Field Listing
$3.737 billion (2006 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
2% (2006 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$2,000 (2006 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture: 23.7%
industry: 36.1%
services: 40.2% (2006 est.)
Labor force:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
3 million (1999)
Labor force - by occupation:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture: 80%
industry and services: 20% (2000 est.)
Unemployment rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
Population below poverty line:
Definition Field Listing
40% (2003 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
Definition Field Listing
lowest 10%: 2.6%
highest 10%: 32% (1994)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
Definition Field Listing
40.3 (1994)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
27% (2006 est.)
Investment (gross fixed):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
17.6% of GDP (2006 est.)
Definition Field Listing
revenues: $288.2 million
expenditures: $556.7 million; including capital expenditures of $NA (2006 est.)
Agriculture - products:
Definition Field Listing
rice, coffee, pineapples, palm kernels, cassava (tapioca), bananas, sweet potatoes; cattle, sheep, goats; timber
Definition Field Listing
bauxite, gold, diamonds; alumina refining; light manufacturing and agricultural processing industries
Industrial production growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
Electricity - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
790 million kWh (2004)
Electricity - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
734.7 million kWh (2004)
Electricity - exports:
Definition Field Listing
0 kWh (2004)
Electricity - imports:
Definition Field Listing
0 kWh (2004)
Oil - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 bbl/day (2004 est.)
Oil - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
8,440 bbl/day (2004 est.)
Oil - exports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA bbl/day (2001)
Oil - imports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA bbl/day (2001)
Natural gas - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 cu m (2004 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 cu m (2004 est.)
Current account balance:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$-344 million (2006 est.)
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$615.1 million f.o.b. (2006 est.)
Exports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
bauxite, alumina, gold, diamonds, coffee, fish, agricultural products
Exports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
Russia 14.6%, South Korea 11.3%, Spain 10.2%, Ukraine 7.9%, US 6.1%, Ireland 6%, France 5.7%, Germany 5%, Belgium 4.5% (2005)
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$730 million f.o.b. (2006 est.)
Imports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
petroleum products, metals, machinery, transport equipment, textiles, grain and other foodstuffs
Imports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
China 8.5%, US 7.3%, France 7.2%, Cote d'Ivoire 5.2%, Italy 4.7%, Belgium 4.1% (2005)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$59.6 million (2006 est.)
Debt - external:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$3.46 billion (2003 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
Definition Field Listing
$237.5 million (2003)
Currency (code):
Definition Field Listing
Guinean franc (GNF)
Exchange rates:
Definition Field Listing
Guinean francs per US dollar - 5,555 (2006), 3,644.3 (2005), 2,225 (2004), 1,984.9 (2003), 1,975.8 (2002)
Fiscal year:
Definition Field Listing
calendar year
   Communications    Guinea Top of Page
Telephones - main lines in use:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
26,200 (2003)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
189,000 (2005)
Telephone system:
Definition Field Listing
general assessment: poor to fair system of open-wire lines, small radiotelephone communication stations, and new microwave radio relay system
domestic: microwave radio relay and radiotelephone communication
international: country code - 224; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)
Radio broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
AM 4 (one station is inactive), FM 1 (plus 7 repeaters), shortwave 3 (2001)
Television broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
6 low-power stations (2001)
Internet country code:
Definition Field Listing
Internet hosts:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
367 (2006)
Internet users:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
46,000 (2005)
   Transportation    Guinea Top of Page
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
16 (2006)
Airports - with paved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 5
over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3 (2006)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 11
1,524 to 2,437 m: 6
914 to 1,523 m: 3
under 914 m: 2 (2006)
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 837 km
standard gauge: 175 km 1.435-m gauge
narrow gauge: 662 km 1.000-m gauge (2005)
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 44,348 km
paved: 4,342 km
unpaved: 40,006 km (2003)
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
1,300 km (navigable by shallow-draft native craft) (2005)
Ports and terminals:
Definition Field Listing
   Military    Guinea Top of Page
Military branches:
Definition Field Listing
Army, Navy, Air Force, Presidential Guard (2006)
Military service age and obligation:
Definition Field Listing
18 years of age for compulsory military service; conscript service obligation - 24 months (2004)
Manpower available for military service:
Definition Field Listing
males age 18-49: 1,852,534
females age 18-49: 1,827,560 (2005 est.)
Manpower fit for military service:
Definition Field Listing
males age 18-49: 1,034,006
females age 18-49: 1,032,885 (2005 est.)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
2.9% (2005 est.)
   Transnational Issues    Guinea Top of Page
Disputes - international:
Definition Field Listing
conflicts among rebel groups, warlords, and youth gangs in neighboring states have spilled over into Guinea, resulting in domestic instability; Sierra Leone has pressured Guinea to remove its forces from the town of Yenga, occupied since 1998
Refugees and internally displaced persons:
Definition Field Listing
refugees (country of origin): 127,256 (Liberia) 7,165 (Sierra Leone) 7,064 (Cote d'Ivoire)
IDPs: 82,000 (cross-border incursions from Liberia, Sierra Leone, Cote d'Ivoire) (2005)

This page was last updated on 18 January, 2007

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