GUINEA-BISSAU

Date of establishment: September 24, 1973

Brief history:

  • 17th century: Portuguese colonial rule expands inland.
  • 19th century: Portuguese Guinea (present-day Guinea-Bissau) becomes part of the Portuguese colonial empire.
  • 20th century: In the 1950s, the struggle for independence against Portuguese rule begins under the leadership of the PAIGC (African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde).
  • September 24, 1973: Guinea-Bissau declared independence from Portugal after a long armed struggle. Luís Cabral becomes the country’s first president.
  • 1974-1998: The country faces political unrest, military coups, and instability.
  • 1998-1999: Civil war breaks out due to political and ethnic conflicts.
  • 2000: A peace agreement is concluded, ending the civil war. However, a period of political instability and military coups again followed.
  • 21st century: Guinea-Bissau remains politically unstable with frequent changes of government.

 

International abbreviation: GW

 

Currency: Guinean franc

The Guinean franc is used in notes with denominations 25, 50, 100, 500, 1 000, 2 000, 5 000, 10 000, and 20 000 francs. In principle it is subdivided into centimes but these are not used.

 

Internet domain: .gw

 

Dialing code: +245

 

Time zone: GMT 0

 

Geography:

Guinea-Bissau has approximately 350 kilometers (220 miles) of coastline on the Atlantic Ocean. The country is crisscrossed by several rivers, the most important of which is the Geba, which flows into the Atlantic. The interior includes rainforests and woodlands that are home to a variety of plant and animal species.

The country includes several islands in the Atlantic Ocean, including the Bijagós Archipelago, which is known for its biodiversity and mangrove ecosystems.

 

Highest peak: Monte Lico 262 m (860 feet) above sea level.

The mountain is located in the northeast of the country in the Gabú region. This mountain range is part of a mountain system that lies near the borders with the states of Guinea and Senegal.

 

Climate:

The rainy season lasts from June to October. During this period, the country experiences regular monsoon rains, which are essential for agriculture and water supply.

The dry season lasts from November to May. During this period, the country experiences very high temperatures.

The average maximum temperature is around 30-32°C (86-90°F) during the rainy season and can rise in the summer months.

The country can be threatened by hurricanes and tropical storms, especially during the rainy season.

 

Fauna and flora:

Guinea-Bissau is a paradise for ornithologists. The country is home to many species of birds, including a number of endangered species. Among them are pelicans, ravens, eagles, and ibises.

Crocodiles and turtles live in rivers and mangrove swamps. The coast and its surrounding waters are rich in marine life, including various species of fish, sharks, and dolphins.

It has extensive mangrove swamps on the coast. These ecosystems are important for coastal protection, biodiversity and as fish spawning grounds.

Inland are rainforests and wooded areas. In some parts, you can find savannah and grassy areas that are typical of the African landscape.

Palm groves are important to the local economy, providing for the production of palm oil and other products.

 

Agriculture:

The main crops grown in Guinea-Bissau include rice, maize, cassava, sweet potatoes, groundnuts, and sorghum, as well as tropical crops such as sugar cane, palm oil, coffee, and cocoa.

Rice is a staple food in the Guinean diet and is one of the main crops grown in the country. With its Atlantic coastline, fishing is an important source of food and livelihood for many people in Guinea-Bissau. Palm trees are common and palm oil is important for the local economy.

Cocoa and coffee are other important crops grown. Cocoa is used to make chocolate and coffee is exported.

 

Extraction of raw materials:

Guinea-Bissau has significant reserves of bauxite, a raw material used to produce aluminum. It also has some diamond reserves.

Logging is another source of income in the country. It has extensive forested areas, and the timber is used for local construction and furniture production.

There are signs of small amounts of gold in some parts of the country.

 

Industry:

Guinea-Bissau does not have a very developed industrial sector. Industrial production is limited, and the country is still trying to develop.

The food industry is one of the few sectors that is of greater importance. It includes the processing of palm oil, coffee, cocoa, and other agricultural products.

The country has abundant marine waters, and its fisheries provide food and income for many residents. The country has potential for mining raw materials such as bauxite and diamonds, but it is limited and often accompanied by problems associated with illegal mining.

 

Services and other areas of the economy: tourism and services

 

Natural and historical attractions: the national parks of Orongo and de los Bosques de Cantanhez, and the cities of Bissau and Bafatá.

Guinea-Bissau has a beautiful Atlantic coastline with long sandy beaches and lagoons. These places offer great opportunities to relax, sunbathe, and observe marine life. The Bissago Islands archipelago is a group of more than twenty islands and mangrove swamps that are home to various species of birds and marine animals.

Tourists can visit traditional villages and meet local communities. The country has a rich culture and ethnic diversity.

The country has several national parks and nature reserves that offer opportunities for safaris and wildlife viewing.

 

Waterparks in Guinea – Bissau:

 

Form of government: semi-presidential republic

The head of state is the president, who is elected in regular presidential elections for a five-year term. The president has executive authority and is responsible for managing the government and the state apparatus.

Legislative power is vested in the unicameral National People’s Assembly, which has 102 members elected for five-year terms. Parliament is responsible for passing laws and overseeing the executive branch. Defense and security are another important part of the state establishment.

 

Capital city: Bissau

It lies on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, at the western end of the country, and is the economic, political and cultural center of the country.

Bissau has a rich history dating back to when it was a Portuguese colonial settlement. The Portuguese government had significant influence until 1973, when the country declared independence. Bissau became the capital of the newly formed state.

 

Area: 36 125 km2 (13 948 square miles)

 

Population: 2 030 000 (2022)

The population is diverse and consists of several ethnic groups. The largest are the Bijagós, the Fulba, the Balant, and the Mandinka. Each group has its own culture, language, and traditions. The majority of the population adheres to Islam or traditional African religions, but there are also smaller numbers of Christians and people of other religious beliefs.

The official language is Portuguese. In addition, there are more than twenty different ethnic languages and dialects.

The country has a rich cultural scene with traditional dances, music, and art. Traditional African rituals and festivals are an important part of the culture.

 

UNESCO World Heritage Sites:

 

National parks: 6

 

  1. Boé National Park
  2. Cantanhez Forest National Park
  3. Cufada National Park
  4. Dulombi National Park
  5. Orango National Park
  6. Varela National Park