202th Country to Visit out BLOG! Welcome Malawi Population: 16,323,044


 Background
Established in 1891, the British protectorate of Nyasaland became the independent nation of Malawi in 1964. After three decades of one-party rule under President Hastings Kamuzu BANDA the country held multiparty elections in 1994, under a provisional constitution that came into full effect the following year. President Bingu wa MUTHARIKA, elected in May 2004 after a failed attempt by the previous president to amend the constitution to permit another term, struggled to assert his authority against his predecessor and subsequently started his own party, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in 2005. MUTHARIKA was reelected to a second term in May 2009. As president, he oversaw some economic improvement. He died abruptly in April 2012 and was succeeded by his vice president, Joyce BANDA. Population growth, increasing pressure on agricultural lands, corruption, and the spread of HIV/AIDS pose major problems for Malawi.
 Geography
Landlocked; Lake Nyasa, some 580 km long, is the country’s most prominent physical feature
Location: Southern Africa, east of Zambia, west and north of Mozambique
Geographic coordinates: 13 30 S, 34 00 E
Area: total: 118,484 sq km land: 94,080 sq km water: 24,404 sq km

Size comparison: slightly smaller than Pennsylvania

Land Boundaries: total: 2,881 km border countries: Mozambique 1,569 km, Tanzania 475 km, Zambia 837 km
Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims: none (landlocked)
Climate: sub-tropical; rainy season (November to May); dry season (May to November)
Terrain: narrow elongated plateau with rolling plains, rounded hills, some mountains
Elevation extremes: lowest point: junction of the Shire River and international boundary with Mozambique 37 m highest point: Sapitwa (Mount Mlanje) 3,002 m
Natural resources: limestone, arable land, hydropower, unexploited deposits of uranium, coal, and bauxite
Land use: arable land: 20.68% permanent crops: 1.18% other: 78.14% (2005)
Irrigated land: 590 sq km (2003)
Natural hazards: NA
Current Environment Issues: deforestation; land degradation; water pollution from agricultural runoff, sewage, industrial wastes; siltation of spawning grounds endangers fish populations
International Environment Agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea
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 People
Population: 16,323,044 (July 2012 est.) 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, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected
Age structure: 0-14 years: 45.1% (male 3,586,696/female 3,571,298) 15-64 years: 52.2% (male 4,140,874/female 4,155,015) 65 years and over: 2.7% (male 182,304/female 243,065) (2011 est.)
Median age: total: 17.3 years male: 17.2 years female: 17.4 years (2012 est.)
Population growth rate: 2.758% (2012 est.)
Birth rate: 40.42 births/1,000 population (2012 est.)
Death rate: 12.84 deaths/1,000 population (July 2012 est.)
Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2012 est.)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.01 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.74 male(s)/female total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2011 est.)
Infant mortality rate: total: 79.02 deaths/1,000 live births male: 83.06 deaths/1,000 live births female: 74.92 deaths/1,000 live births (2012 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 52.31 years male: 51.5 years female: 53.13 years (2012 est.)
Total fertility rate: 5.35 children born/woman (2012 est.)
HIV/AIDS – adult prevalence rate: 11% (2009 est.)
HIV/AIDS – people living with HIV/AIDS: 920,000 (2009 est.)
HIV/AIDS – deaths: 51,000 (2009 est.)
Nationality: noun: Malawian(s) adjective: Malawian
Ethnic groups: Chewa 32.6%, Lomwe 17.6%, Yao 13.5%, Ngoni 11.5%, Tumbuka 8.8%, Nyanja 5.8%, Sena 3.6%, Tonga 2.1%, Ngonde 1%, other 3.5%
Religions: Christian 82.7%, Muslim 13%, other 1.9%, none 2.5% (1998 census)
Languages: Chichewa (official) 57.2%, Chinyanja 12.8%, Chiyao 10.1%, Chitumbuka 9.5%, Chisena 2.7%, Chilomwe 2.4%, Chitonga 1.7%, other 3.6% (1998 census)
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write total population: 74.8% male: 81.1% female: 68.5% (2010 est.)
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 Government
Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Malawi conventional short form: Malawi local long form: Dziko la Malawi local short form: Malawi former: British Central African Protectorate, Nyasaland Protectorate, Nyasaland
Government type: multiparty democracy
Capital: name: Lilongwe geographic coordinates: 13 58 S, 33 47 E time difference: UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions: 28 districts; Balaka, Blantyre, Chikwawa, Chiradzulu, Chitipa, Dedza, Dowa, Karonga, Kasungu, Likoma, Lilongwe, Machinga (Kasupe), Mangochi, Mchinji, Mulanje, Mwanza, Mzimba, Neno, Ntcheu, Nkhata Bay, Nkhotakota, Nsanje, Ntchisi, Phalombe, Rumphi, Salima, Thyolo, Zomba
Independence: 6 July 1964 (from the UK)
National holiday: Independence Day (Republic Day), 6 July (1964)
Constitution: 18 May 1994
Legal system: mixed legal system of English common law and customary law; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court of Appeal
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state: President Joyce BANDA (since 7 April 2012); Vice President Khumbo Hastings KACHALI (since 11 April 2012); note – the president is both the chief of state and head of government; former President Bingu wa MUTHARIKA died on 5 April 2012, Vice President Joyce BANDA was subsequently sworn in on 7 April 2012 head of government: President Joyce BANDA (since 7 April 2012); Vice President Khumbo Hastings KACHALI (since 11 April 2012); note – President BANDA assumed office due to the death of former president MUTHARIKA cabinet: 46-member Cabinet named by the president (For more information visit the World Leaders website ) elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 19 May 2009 (next to be held in May 2014) election results: Bingu wa MUTHARIKA elected president; percent of vote – Bingu wa MUTHARIKA 66%, John TEMBO 30.7%, other 3.3%; note – MUTHARIKA passed away on 5 April 2012 and was succeeded by then vice president Joyce BANDA
Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly (193 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) elections: last held on 19 May 2009 (next to be held in May 2014) election results: percent of vote by party – NA; seats by party – DPP 114, MCP 26, UDF 17, independents 32, other 4
Judicial branch: Supreme Court of Appeal; High Court (chief justice appointed by the president, puisne judges appointed on the advice of the Judicial Service Commission); magistrate’s courts
Political parties and leaders: Alliance for Democracy or AFORD [Dindi NYASULU]; Congress of Democrats or CODE [Ralph KASAMBARA]; Democratic Progressive Party or DPP [Bingu wa MUTHARIKA]; Malawi Congress Party or MCP [John TEMBO]; Malawi Democratic Party or MDP [Kampelo KALUA]; Malawi Forum for Unity and Development or MAFUNDE [George MNESA]; Maravi People’s Party [Uladi MUSSA]; National Unity Party or NUP [Harry CHIUME]; New Rainbow Coalition Party [Beatrice MWALE]; New Republican Party [Gwanda CHAKUWAMBA]; People’s Progressive Movement or PPM [Aleke BANDA]; People’s Transformation Movement or PETRA [Kamuzu CHIBAMBO]; Republican Party or RP [Stanley MASAULI]; United Democratic Front or UDF [Bakili MULUZI]; United Democratic Party [Kenedy KALAMBO]
Political pressure groups and leaders: Agri-Ecology Media (agriculture and environmental group); Council for NGOs in Malawi or CONGOMA (human rights, democracy, and development); Human Rights Consultative Committee or HRCC (human rights); Malawi Law Society (human rights and law reform); Malawi Movement for the Restoration of Democracy or MMRD (acts to restore and maintain democracy); Public Affairs Committee or PAC (promotes democracy, development, peace and unity)
International organization participation: ACP, AfDB, AU, C, COMESA, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, MONUSCO, NAM, OPCW, SADC, UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNOCI, UNTSO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Stephen D. Tennyson MATENJE chancery: 2408 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008 telephone: [1] (202) 721-0270 FAX: [1] (202) 721-0288
Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Jeanine E. JACKSON embassy: 16 Jomo Kenyatta Road, Lilongwe 3 mailing address: P. O. Box 30016, Lilongwe 3, Malawi telephone: [265] (1) 773 166 FAX: [265] (1) 770 471
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 Economy
Landlocked Malawi ranks among the world’s most densely populated and least developed countries. The economy is predominately agricultural with about 80% of the population living in rural areas. Agriculture, which has benefited from fertilizer subsidies since 2006, accounts for one-third of GDP and 90% of export revenues. The performance of the tobacco sector is key to short-term growth as tobacco accounts for more than half of exports. The economy depends on substantial inflows of economic assistance from the IMF, the World Bank, and individual donor nations. In 2006, Malawi was approved for relief under the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) program. In December 2007, the US granted Malawi eligibility status to receive financial support within the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) initiative. The government faces many challenges including developing a market economy, improving educational facilities, facing up to environmental problems, dealing with the rapidly growing problem of HIV/AIDS, and satisfying foreign donors that fiscal discipline is being tightened. Since 2005 President MUTHARIKA”s government has exhibited improved financial discipline under the guidance of Finance Minister Goodall GONDWE and signed a three year Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility worth $56 million with the IMF. The government has announced infrastructure projects that could yield improvements, such as a new oil pipeline for better fuel access, and the potential for a waterway link through Mozambican rivers to the ocean for better transportation options. Since 2009, however, Malawi has experienced some setbacks, including a general shortage of foreign exchange, which has damaged its ability to pay for imports, and fuel shortages that hinder transportation and productivity. Investment fell 23% in 2009, and continued to decline in 2010. The government has failed to address barriers to investment such as unreliable power, water shortages, poor telecommunications infrastructure,
GDP (purchasing power parity): GDP (purchasing power parity): $14.08 billion (2011 est.) $13.35 billion (2010 est.) $12.53 billion (2009 est.) note: data are in 2011 US dollars
GDP (official exchange rate): GDP (official exchange rate): $5.673 billion (2011 est.)
GDP – real growth rate: 5.5% (2011 est.) 6.5% (2010 est.) 9% (2009 est.)
GDP – per capita (PPP): GDP – per capita (PPP): $900 (2011 est.) $800 (2010 est.) $800 (2009 est.) note: data are in 2011 US dollars
GDP – composition by sector: agriculture: 30.3% industry: 16.7% services: 53% (2011 est.)
Labor force: 5.747 million (2007 est.)
Labor force – by occupation: agriculture: 90% industry and services: 10% (2003 est.)
Unemployment rate: NA%
Population below poverty line: 53% (2004)
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 3% highest 10%: 31.9% (2004)
Distribution of family income – Gini index: 39 (2004)
Inflation rate (consumer prices): Inflation rate (consumer prices): 7.6% (2011 est.) 7.4% (2010 est.)
Investment (gross fixed): Investment (gross fixed): 22.7% of GDP (2011 est.)
Budget: revenues: $1.764 billion expenditures: $1.822 billion (2011 est.)
Public debt: 36.1% of GDP (2011 est.) 36.8% of GDP (2010 est.)
Agriculture – products: tobacco, sugarcane, cotton, tea, corn, potatoes, cassava (tapioca), sorghum, pulses, groundnuts, Macadamia nuts; cattle, goats
Industries: tobacco, tea, sugar, sawmill products, cement, consumer goods
Industrial production growth rate: 8.2% (2011 est.)
Electricity – production: 1.676 billion kWh (2008 est.)
Electricity – consumption: 1.559 billion kWh (2008 est.)
Electricity – exports: 0 kWh (2009 est.)
Electricity – imports: 0 kWh (2009 est.)
Oil – production: 0 bbl/day (2010 est.)
Oil – consumption: 8,000 bbl/day (2010 est.)
Oil – exports: 0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Oil – imports: 7,124 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Oil – proved reserves: 0 bbl (1 January 2011 est.)
Natural gas – production: 0 cu m (2009 est.)
Natural gas – consumption: 0 cu m (2009 est.)
Natural gas – exports: 0 cu m (2009 est.)
Natural gas – imports: 0 cu m (2009 est.)
Natural gas – proved reserves: 0 cu m (1 January 2011 est.)
Current account balance: -$731.9 million (2011 est.) -$451.1 million (2010 est.)
Exports: $911.5 million (2011 est.) $964.3 million (2010 est.)
Exports – commodities: tobacco 53%, tea, sugar, cotton, coffee, peanuts, wood products, apparel
Exports – partners: Canada 12.3%, South Africa 9%, Zimbabwe 8.9%, Germany 8.7%, US 6%, Russia 6%, UK 4.1%, China 4.1% (2011)
Imports: $1.687 billion (2011 est.) $1.671 billion (2010 est.)
Imports – commodities: food, petroleum products, semi-manufactures, consumer goods, transportation equipment
Imports – partners: South Africa 41.1%, India 8.4%, Zambia 8.1%, China 7.6%, Tanzania 4.9%, US 4.4% (2011)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $263 million (31 December 2011 est.) $323 million (31 December 2010 est.)
Debt – external: $1.327 billion (31 December 2011 est.) $1.24 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment – at home: $NA
Stock of direct foreign investment – abroad: $NA
Market value of publicly traded shares: $1.384 billion (31 December 2011) $1.363 billion (31 December 2010) $1.383 billion (31 December 2009)
Exchange rates: Malawian kwachas (MWK) per US dollar – 159 (2011 est.) 150.49 (2010 est.) 141.14 (2009) 142.41 (2008) 141.12 (2007)
Fiscal year: 1 July – 30 June
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 Communications
Telephones in use: 160,100 (2009) country comparison to the world: 133
Cellular Phones in use: 3.038 million (2009)
Telephone system: general assessment: rudimentary; privatization of Malawi Telecommunications (MTL), a necessary step in bringing improvement to telecommunications services, completed in 2006 domestic: limited fixed-line subscribership of about 1 per 100 persons; mobile-cellular services are expanding but network coverage is limited and is based around the main urban areas; mobile-cellular subscribership about 20 per 100 persons international: country code – 265; satellite earth stations – 2 Intelsat (1 Indian Ocean, 1 Atlantic Ocean) (2009)
Radio broadcast stations:
Television broadcast stations:
Internet country code: .mw
Internet hosts: 1,092 (2010)
Internet users: 716,400 (2009)
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 Transportation
Airports: 31 (2012) country comparison to the world: 114
Airports (paved runways): total: 7 over 3,047 m: 1 1,524 to 2,437 m: 2 914 to 1,523 m: 4 (2012)
Airports (unpaved runways): total: 24 1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 12 under 914 m: 11 (2012)
Railways: total: 797 km narrow gauge: 797 km 1.067-m gauge (2008)
Roadways: total: 15,451 km paved: 6,956 km unpaved: 8,495 km (2003)
Waterways: 700 km (on Lake Nyasa [Lake Malawi] and Shire River) (2010)
Ports and terminals: Chipoka, Monkey Bay, Nkhata Bay, Nkhotakota, Chilumba
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 Military
Military branches: Malawi Defense Forces (MDF): Army (includes Air Wing, Marine Unit) (2009)
Military service age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service; standard obligation is 2 years of active duty and 5 years reserve service (2007)
Manpower available for military service: males age 16-49: 3,514,809 (2010 est.)
Manpower fit for military service: males age 16-49: 2,132,909 females age 16-49: 2,043,925 (2010 est.)

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