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South Africa Facts

South Africa Facts | Republic of South Africa Information | South Africa Statistics | Union of South Africa

South Africa Facts |  Republic of South Africa Information | South Africa Statistics South Africa Facts |  Republic of South Africa Information | South Africa Statistics
Africa Continent
 
Southern African Map
 
South Africa Facts |  Republic of South Africa Information | South Africa Statistics South Africa Facts |  Republic of South Africa Information | South Africa Statistics
South Africa Map
 
SOUTH AFRICAN Flag
 
 SOUTH AFRICAN POLITICAL
  South Africa Facts |  Republic of South Africa Information | South Africa Statistics  
Background: After the British seized the Cape of Good Hope area in 1806, many of the Dutch settlers (the Boers) trekked north to found their own republics. The discovery of diamonds (1867) and gold (1886) spurred wealth and immigration and intensified the subjugation of the native inhabitants. The Boers resisted British encroachments, but were defeated in the Boer War (1899-1902). The resulting Union of South Africa operated under a policy of apartheid - the separate development of the races. The 1990s brought an end to apartheid politically and ushered in black majority rule.
 
 
Common Name: South Africa Local Official Name: South Africa
Abbreviated Name: Republic of South Africa Official Name: South Africa
Official Script Name: South Africa Local Common Name: RSA
Former Name: Union of South Africa Territory of: NA
 
Head of State: President Thabo MBEKI
 
Government Type: republic
 
Independence: 1910 May 31 (from UK)
 
Constitution: 1996 December 10 (this new constitution was certified b
 
National Holiday: Freedom Day, 27 April
 
International Organization Participation: ACP, AfDB, BIS, C, CCC, ECA, FAO, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MONUC, NAM, NSG, OAU, OPCW, PCA, SACU, SADC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNMEE, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO, ZC
 
Administrative Divisions: 9 provinces; Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga, North-West, Northern Cape, Northern Province (may have become Limpopo), Western Cape
 
Dependent Areas: NA
 
Legal System: based on Roman-Dutch law and English common law; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations
 
Suffrage: 18 years of age years
 
Executive, Legislative and Judicial Branches: Executive Branch: chief of state: President Thabo MBEKI (since 16 June 1999); Executive Deputy President Jacob ZUMA (since 17 June 1999); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government elections: president elected by the National Assembly for a five-year term; election last held 2 June 1999 (next scheduled for sometime between May and July 2004) head of government: President Thabo MBEKI (since 16 June 1999); Executive Deputy President Jacob ZUMA (since 17 June 1999); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president election results: Thabo MBEKI elected president; percent of National Assembly vote - 100% (by acclamation) note: ANC-IFP is the governing coalition Legislative Branch: bicameral Parliament consisting of the National Assembly (400 seats; members are elected by popular vote under a system of proportional representation to serve five-year terms) and the National Council of Provinces (90 seats, 10 members elected by each of the nine provincial legislatures for five-year terms; has special powers to protect regional interests, including the safeguarding of cultural and linguistic traditions among ethnic minorities); note - following the implementation of the new constitution on 3 February 1997 the former Senate was disbanded and replaced by the National Council of Provinces with essentially no change in membership and party affiliations, although the new institution's responsibilities have been changed somewhat by the new constitution elections: National Assembly and National Council of Provinces - last held 2 June 1999 (next to be held by 2 August 2004) election results: National Assembly - percent of vote by party - ANC 66.4%, DP 9.6%, IFP 8.6%, NP 6.9%, UDM 3.4%, ACDP 1.4%, FF 0.8%, other 2.9%; seats by party - ANC 266, DP 38, IFP 34, NP 28, UDM 14, ACDP 6, FF 3, other 11; National Council of Provinces - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - ANC 61, NP 17, FF 4, IFP 5, DP 3 Judicial Branch: Constitutional Court; Supreme Court of Appeals; High Courts; Magistrate Courts
 
Party Leaders: African Christian Democratic Party or ACDP [Kenneth MESHOE, president]; African National Congress or ANC [Thabo MBEKI, president]; Democratic Alliance (formed from the merger of the Democratic Party or DP and the New National Party or NP; note - NP split from DP in 2001) [Anthony LEON]; Freedom Front or FF [Dr. Pieter MULDER, president]; Inkatha Freedom Party or IFP [Mangosuthu BUTHELEZI, president]; New National Party or NP [Marthinus VAN SCHALKWYK]; Pan-Africanist Congress or PAC [Stanley MOGOBA, president]; United Democratic Movement or UDM [Bantu HOLOMISA]
 
International Disputes: Swaziland continues to press South Africa into ceding ethnic Swazi lands in Kangwane region of KwaZulu-Natal province, that were long ago part of the Swazi Kingdom
 
Illicit Drugs: transshipment center for heroin, hashish, marijuana, and possibly cocaine; cocaine consumption on the rise; world's largest market for illicit methaqualone, usually imported illegally from India through various east African countries; illicit cultivation of marijuana 
 
 
 SOUTH AFRICAN GEOGRAPHY
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Location of South Africa: Southern Africa, at the southern tip of the continent of Africa
 
Continent: Africa Land Area Total: 1,219,912 sq km 
Region: Southern African Land Area Land: 1,219,912 sq km
Capitol City: Pretoria; note - Cape Town is the legislative center and Bloemfontein the judicial center Land Area Water: 0 sq km
      
Latitude: 029 00 S Border Boundary Land: 4,862 km
Longitude: 024 00 E Border Boundary Coastline: 2,798 km 
  
Arable Land: 12.00 % Pastures: 0.00 %
Crops: 1.00 % Woodlands and Forests: 0.00
  
Highest Elevation: 3,408 m Location: Njesuthi
Lowest Elevation: 0 m Location: Atlantic Ocean
  
Largest City in South Africa: Cape Town Cape Town Largest City Population: 2,950,000
  
Threatened Species: 283
 
Environmental Issues: lack of important arterial rivers or lakes requires extensive water conservation and control measures; growth in water usage outpacing supply; pollution of rivers from agricultural runoff and urban discharge; air pollution resulting in acid rain; soil erosion; desertification
 
Environmental Agreements: party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
 
Irrigated Land: 13,500
 
Bordering Countries: Botswana 1,840 km, Lesotho 909 km, Mozambique 491 km, Namibia 967 km, Swaziland 430 km, Zimbabwe 225 km
 
Natural Resources: gold, chromium, antimony, coal, iron ore, manganese, nickel, phosphates, tin, uranium, gem diamonds, platinum, copper, vanadium, salt, natural gas
 
Geographical Terrain: vast interior plateau rimmed by rugged hills and narrow coastal plain
 
Comparative Area of South Africa: slightly less than twice the size of Texas
 
South Africa's Geography: South Africa completely surrounds Lesotho and almost completely surrounds Swaziland
 

 SOUTH AFRICAN CLIMATE
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General Climate: mostly semiarid; subtropical along east coast; sunny days, cool nights
 
Natural Hazards: prolonged droughts
 
 
 SOUTH AFRICAN ECONOMY
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Economic Overview: South Africa is a middle-income, developing country with an abundant supply of resources, well-developed financial, legal, communications, energy, and transport sectors, a stock exchange that ranks among the 10 largest in the world, and a modern infrastructure supporting an efficient distribution of goods to major urban centers throughout the region. However, growth has not been strong enough to cut into high unemployment, and daunting economic problems remain from the apartheid era, especially the problems of poverty and lack of economic empowerment among the disadvantaged groups. Other problems are crime, corruption, and HIV/AIDS. At the start of 2000, President MBEKI vowed to promote economic growth and foreign investment, and to reduce poverty by relaxing restrictive labor laws, stepping up the pace of privatization, and cutting unneeded governmental spending. The economy slowed in 2001, largely the result of the slowing of the international economy.
 
 
GDP: $412,000,000,000 USD Currency: rand
GDP per Capita: $9,400 USD Currency Code: ZAR
GDP Growth Rate: 2.60 %
  
Currency Exchange Rate History: rand per US dollar - 11.58786 (January 2002), 8.60918 (2001), 6.93983 (2000), 6.10948 (1999), 5.52828 (1998), 4.60796 (1997)
  
  
GDP of Agriculture: 3.00 % GDP of Industry: 31.00 %
GDP of Services: 66.00 %  
   
Inflation Rate: 5.80 % Population in Poverty: 50.00 %
Unemployment Rate: 37.00 % Tourism: 6,026,000.00 visitors each year
   
Consumption by lowest 10%: 1.10 % Budget Revenue in USD: $22,600,000,000 USD
Consumption by upper 10%: 45.90 % Budget Expenditures in USD: $24,700,000,000 USD
   
Electricity Production: 194,383,000,000 kWh Electricity Exports: 4,549,000,000 kWh
Electricity Consumption: 181,521,000,000 kWh Electricity Imports: 5,294,000,000 kWh

Electricity Production by Source:
 
Fossil Fuel Electricity Production: 92.62% Nuclear Electricity Production: 6.69%
Hydro Electricity Production: 0.69% Other Electricity Production: 0.00%
   
Oil Production: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Production: 0 cu m
Oil Consumption: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Consumption: 0 cu m
Oil Exports: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Exports: 0 cu m
Oil Imports: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Imports: 0 cu m
Proven Oil Reserves: 0 barrels Proven Natural Gas Reserves: 0 cu m
   
External Debt: $25,500,000,000 USD Received in economic aid: $539,000,000 USD
  Donated in economic aid: $0 USD
   
Agricultural Products: corn, wheat, sugarcane, fruits, vegetables; beef, poultry, mutton, wool, dairy products
 
Primary Industries: mining (world's largest producer of platinum, gold, chromium), automobile assembly, metalworking, machinery, textile, iron and steel, chemicals, fertilizer, foodstuffs
 
Industrial Growth Rate: 7.00 %
  
  
Import Amount in USD: $28,100,000,000 USD - machinery, foodstuffs and equipment, chemicals, petroleum products, scientific instruments
 
Import Partners: EU 41%, US 11.4%, Saudi Arabia 7.3%, Japan 7%
 
Export Amount in USD: $32,300,000,000 USD - gold, diamonds, platinum, other metals and minerals, machinery and equipment
 
Export Partners: EU 33%, US 20%, Japan 6%, Mozambique 2.5%
 
    
GINI Index: 59.30%
 
Labor Force Number of People: 17,000,000
 
Labor Force by Occupations: agriculture 30%, industry 25%, services 45%
 
  
 SOUTH AFRICAN COMMUNICATIONS
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Radio Broadcast Stations: 362 Number of People with Radios: 17,000,000
Television Broadcast Stations: 556 Number of People with Televisions: 6,000,000
Number of People with Mainline Telephones: 5,000,000 Number of People with Mobile Phones: 7,060,000
 
Internet Service Providers: 150 Internet Users: 2,400,000
 
Internet Country Code: .za Newspapers: 34
Two Letter Country Code: ZA Weights and Measures:
Phone Country Code: +27 Electricity Voltage: Volts
  
Telephone Systems: general assessment: the system is the best developed and most modern in Africa domestic: consists of carrier-equipped open-wire lines, coaxial cables, microwave radio relay links, fiber-optic cable, radiotelephone communication stations, and wireless local loops; key centers are Bloemfontein, Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg, Port Elizabeth, and Pretoria international: 2 submarine cables; satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (1 Indian Ocean and 2 Atlantic Ocean)
 
  
 SOUTH AFRICAN TRANSPORTATION
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Highways: 59,753 km Railways: 20,384 km
Gas And Oil Pipelines: 3,001 km Waterways: 0 km
Airports: 144 Heliports: 0
 
Motor Vehicles: 156 per 1,000 people CO2 Emissions: 317,058,000 Metric Tons of CO2 per year
  Per capita CO2 emissions: 8.20 Metric Tons of CO2 per year
  
Merchant Marines: total: 8 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 271,650 GRT/268,604 DWT note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Denmark 3, Netherlands 1 (2002 est.) ships by type: container 6, petroleum tanker 2
 
Ports and Harbors: Cape Town, Durban, East London, Mossel Bay, Port Elizabeth, Richards Bay, Saldanha
 
  
 SOUTH AFRICAN PEOPLE
  South Africa Facts |  Republic of South Africa Information | South Africa Statistics  
 
Population: 43,647,658 people type - nationality Birth Rate: 20.63 births per 1,000 people
Population Density: 35.00 people per sq km Death Rate: 18.86 deaths per 1,000 people
Population Growth: 0.02% per year Fertility Rate per Women: 2.38 babies born per woman
 
Population Male 0-14: 6,943,761 Population Female 0-14: 6,849,745
Population Male 15-64: 13,377,011 Population Female 15-64: 14,300,850
Population Male 65+: 816,222 Population Female 65+: 1,360,069
 
Population 0-14: 31.60% Literacy Rate: 85.00%
Population 15-64: 63.40% Literacy rate of Males: 86.00%
Population 65+: 5.00% Literacy rate of Females: 85.00%
 
Population that is Male: 47.00 % Population that is Female: 53.00%
Life expectancy at birth in years: 45.43 years Infant mortality rate - baby deaths per 1000 births: 61.78 Babies die per 1,000 births
Life expectancy at birth for Males: 45.19 years Life expectancy at birth for Females: 45.68 years
 
Rate of AIDS/HIV infection: 19.94% Number of people living with AIDS or HIV: 5,200,000
Number of people who died of AIDS: 300,000
   
Disease Risk:
 
Diseases:
 
Net Migration Rate per 1,000 people: -1.56
 
Nationality: SOUTH AFRICAN
 
Ethnic Groups: black 75.2%, white 13.6%, Colored 8.6%, Indian 2.6% 
 
  
Primary Language: Afrikaans
 
Other Languages: 11 official languages, including Afrikaans, English, Ndebele, Pedi, Sotho, Swazi, Tsonga, Tswana, Venda, Xhosa, Zulu
 
 
Primary Religion: Christian
 
Other Religions: Christian 68% (includes most whites and Coloreds, about 60% of blacks and about 40% of Indians), Muslim 2%, Hindu 1.5% (60% of Indians), indigenous beliefs and animist 28.5%
 
  
 SOUTH AFRICAN MILITARY
  South Africa Facts |  Republic of South Africa Information | South Africa Statistics  
  
Branches: South African National Defense Force (including Army, Navy, Air Force, and Medical Services), South African Police Service
 
Manpower Fit to Serve: 18 years of age years
 
Manpower Available: 11,557,242 People
 
Manpower Fit to Serve: 7,031,337 People
 
Amount of Manpower Available each Year: 466,399 People per year
 
Expenditures: $1,790,000,000 USD per year
 
Expenditures as a Percentage of GDP: 1.60
 
 
Note: Phrasebase uses a variety of sources when compiling the facts and information presented above. This information is continually updated throughout the year.
 SOUTH AFRICAN RESOURCES
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South Africa Spa and Resort Directory
 
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South Africa Vacation Rentals And Holiday Villas
 

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