NAMIBIA

Date of establishment: March 21, 1990

Brief history:

  • 1884 – The German Empire claimed South West Africa (present-day Namibia) and began colonizing it.
  • 1915 – During World War I, the Union of South Africa (today’s Republic of South Africa) occupied South West Africa and gained control of the territory.
  • 1920 – South West Africa was officially a Trust Territory of the League of Nations under the mandate of the Union of South Africa.
  • 1946 – South West Africa became a United Nations (UN) administered territory.
  • 1960-1980 – During this time, Namibia’s struggle for independence against South African occupation began, with the Namibian liberation organization, SWAPO, playing a key role.
  • 1988 – After long negotiations and international pressure, an agreement was signed between the Republic of South Africa, Cuba, and the USA, which led to the withdrawal of South African troops and the declaration of Namibia’s independence.
  • March 21, 1990 – Namibia was officially declared an independent republic.
  • 1990s and 2000s – It gradually developed as an independent state with democratic elections and economic growth.
  • Present – The country remains an independent state with democratic institutions, although it still faces some social and economic challenges such as the unequal distribution of wealth and land reform issues.

 

International abbreviation: NA

 

Currency: Namibian dollar NAD

The Namibian dollar has been the currency used in Namibia since its independence in 1990. It is subdivided into 100 cents.

 

Internet domain: .na

 

Dialing code: +264

 

Time zone: GMT +2

 

Geography:

Namibia is best known for the Namib Desert, one of the oldest and most famous deserts in the world. It is home to tall sand dunes, the largest of which is known as the Sossusvlei Dunes. It has a coastline of approximately 1 500 kilometers (932 miles) that stretches along the Atlantic Ocean. It is known as the “Skeleton Coast” and is home to many interesting geological formations and sites.

The interior is characterized by extensive plains and highlands such as the Central Highlands. The area is mountainous and wild, with several mountains and rock formations.

Although a largely dry country, Namibia has several rivers, the most significant of which is the Orange River, which forms the eastern border with the Republic of South Africa.

 

Highest peak: Brandberg 2 573 m (8 442 feet) above sea level.

Brandberg is located in Erongo Province in western Namibia. The mountain is known for its characteristic red color, which is due to the decomposition of rocks in the area.

 

Climate:

Most of Namibia has a desert or semi-desert climate. The Namib Desert, which stretches along the west coast, is one of the driest and oldest deserts in the world. In this area there is minimal precipitation and high temperatures. Average temperatures in the desert region hover around 25-30°C (77-86°F) during the day and can drop below freezing at night.

On the coast of the Atlantic, the climate is milder due to ocean currents. Towns there, such as Swakopmund and Walvis Bay, have a cooler and wetter climate than inland, with average temperatures around 15-25°C (59-77°F). The inland parts have a continental climate with more pronounced temperature fluctuations between night and day. The summer months are hot, with temperatures often exceeding 30°C (86°F), while the winter months can be cold, with nighttime temperatures approaching freezing.

In some parts of the country, there are rainy seasons that usually take place in the summer months. Rainstorms and higher rainfall can occur during these periods.

 

Fauna and flora:

Namibia is famous for its wild and domesticated camels, which are able to survive in the dry environment of the Namib Desert and are important animals for the local people.

In Etosha National Park you can see large animals such as elephants, rhinos, lions, leopards, cheetahs, and buffaloes. The park is a popular place for safaris and wildlife viewing.

The country is a paradise for ornithologists, with many species of birds including flamingos, falcons, vultures, and many more. Waterfowl are often found near salt lakes and marshes.

Sandstone grasshoppers are able to survive in the extreme environment of the desert and have a unique way of life. Many types of marine life can be found on the coast, including seals, dolphins, and many types of fish.

The plants are well adapted to dry conditions and extreme temperatures. These include agave, acacia, aloe vera, Welwitschia (one of the oldest plants in the world) and many other species.

Welwitschia is a unique plant is characterized by its two long, banded leaves and is considered endemic to Namibia.

 

Agriculture:

Due to the dry climatic conditions and desert environment, pastoralism forms a large part of agriculture. Sheep and cattle are the most commonly farmed animal species, especially in the southern and central parts of the country. Although Namibia is mostly dry, some areas such as the northern regions have enough rainfall to grow crops such as maize and wheat.

The country has different areas suitable for growing vines and producing wine. Some of Namibia’s wines have received international recognition. In some regions, such as the Okavango, fruits such as citrus, mango, grapes, and others are grown.

 

Extraction of raw materials:

Namibia is one of the world’s leading diamond producers. The main diamond mines are Orapa, Letlhakane, and Damtshaa. Diamonds are one of the main pillars of the Namibian economy and their mining brings significant income to the state budget.

The country has significant reserves of uranium, which is an important raw material for nuclear power. Uranium mining takes place in the Rössing area, where one of the largest uranium mines in the world is located. Copper is also mined in Namibia, mainly in the Tsumeb region. Lead and zinc are mined in several areas, including Tsumeb and Grootfontein.

Various other minerals such as graphite, phosphate, iron ore, and others are also mined.

 

Industry:

The main industries are food, energy, metal processing, and construction.

Due to increasing urbanization and infrastructure development, the construction of roads, hospitals, schools, and other buildings is developing.

With its long coastline on the Atlantic, there is also abundant fishing.

 

Services and other areas of the economy: transport and tourism

 

Natural and historical attractions: Etosha National Park, the Namib Desert, Twyfelfontein areas, Sossusvlei, and Windhoek city

Namibia is one of the best places in the world for safari and wildlife viewing. Etosha National Park is one of the most famous parks where you can see elephants, lions, rhinos, giraffes, and many other species of animals. The Namib Desert is one of the oldest and most beautiful deserts in the world. The main attraction here is the monumental sand dunes, such as the Sossusvlei Dunes. Swakopmund and Walvis Bay are popular coastal tourist destinations.

The rich cultural history and indigenous tribes such as the Himba and the San offer tourists the opportunity to learn about traditional cultures, crafts, and customs. The country has unique geological formations such as the Fish River Canyon.

 

Waterparks in Namibia:

 

Form of government: semi-presidential republic

The main state body is the president, who is also the head of state and government. He/she is elected for a five-year term in democratic elections and has executive power. The country has a multi-party political system, which means that there are several political parties participating in elections and political processes.

Legislative power is vested in a bicameral parliament consisting of two chambers: the National Assembly and the National Council. The National Assembly is the lower house and has 104 members who are elected for five-year terms. The National Council is the upper house of parliament and has 42 members who are elected for six-year terms.

It has an independent judicial system that includes the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal and regional courts. Judges are appointed by the president on the recommendation of the Judicial Service of Namibia.

 

Capital city: Windhoek

Located in the central part of the country, it is the economic, political and cultural center of Namibia. The name “Windhoek” comes from the German word “Windhuk,” meaning “Place of the Wind,” referring to the frequent windy conditions in the area. Windhoek was founded by German colonizers in 1840 and later became the capital of German South West Africa. After World War I, Namibia was handed over to South Africa, but Windhoek remained the capital.

 

Area: 825 615 km2 (318 772 square miles)

 

Population: 2 550 000 (2020)

Namibia has a diverse population made up of different ethnic and cultural groups. The main groups are the Ovambo, the Herero, the Nama, the Himba, and the San.

The official language is English, which is used in government institutions and in education. Other widespread languages are Oshivambo, Ndonga, Herero, and Afrikaans.

The main religions are Christianity and traditional African religions. Namibia has a health system that provides basic health care to all residents. Health care has been significantly expanded, especially in the area of HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment.

 

UNESCO World Heritage Sites: 2

 

  1. Twyfelfontein (2007) – An area with rock paintings created around 1000 CE.
  2. Namibian Sand Sea (2013) – Sand dunes on the Atlantic coast.

 

National parks: 12

 

  1. ǀAi-ǀAis Hot Springs Game National Park
  2. Bwabwata National Park
  3. Dorob National Park
  4. Etosha National Park
  5. Khaudum National Park
  6. Mangetti National Park
  7. Mudumu National Park
  8. Namib-Naukluft National Park
  9. Nkasa Rupara National Park
  10. Skeleton Coast National Park
  11. Tsau ǁKhaeb National Park
  12. Waterberg Plateau National Park