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Comoros

 
Flag of Comoros
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Coordinates:
12.17 S  44.25 E

 
 
Introduction  Geography  People  Government  Economy
 
Communications  Transportation  Military  Transnational Issues

Map of Comoros

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Legend: DefinitionDefinition Field ListingField Listing Rank OrderRank Order
   Introduction    Comoros Top of Page
Background:
Definition Field Listing
Comoros has endured 19 coups or attempted coups since gaining independence from France in 1975. In 1997, the islands of Anjouan and Moheli declared independence from Comoros. In 1999, military chief Col. AZALI seized power. He pledged to resolve the secessionist crisis through a confederal arrangement named the 2000 Fomboni Accord. In December 2001, voters approved a new constitution and presidential elections took place in the spring of 2002. Each island in the archipelago elected its own president and a new union president took office in May 2002.
   Geography    Comoros Top of Page
Location:
Definition Field Listing
Southern Africa, group of islands at the northern mouth of the Mozambique Channel, about two-thirds of the way between northern Madagascar and northern Mozambique
Geographic coordinates:
Definition Field Listing
12 10 S, 44 15 E
Map references:
Definition Field Listing
Africa
Area:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 2,170 sq km
land: 2,170 sq km
water: 0 sq km
Area - comparative:
Definition Field Listing
slightly more than 12 times the size of Washington, DC
Land boundaries:
Definition Field Listing
0 km
Coastline:
Definition Field Listing
340 km
Maritime claims:
Definition Field Listing
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climate:
Definition Field Listing
tropical marine; rainy season (November to May)
Terrain:
Definition Field Listing
volcanic islands, interiors vary from steep mountains to low hills
Elevation extremes:
Definition Field Listing
lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
highest point: Le Kartala 2,360 m
Natural resources:
Definition Field Listing
NEGL
Land use:
Definition Field Listing
arable land: 35.87%
permanent crops: 23.32%
other: 40.81% (2005)
Irrigated land:
Definition Field Listing
NA
Natural hazards:
Definition Field Listing
cyclones possible during rainy season (December to April); Le Kartala on Grand Comore is an active volcano
Environment - current issues:
Definition Field Listing
soil degradation and erosion results from crop cultivation on slopes without proper terracing; deforestation
Environment - international agreements:
Definition Field Listing
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note:
Definition Field Listing
important location at northern end of Mozambique Channel
   People    Comoros Top of Page
Population:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
690,948 (July 2006 est.)
Age structure:
Definition Field Listing
0-14 years: 42.7% (male 148,009/female 147,038)
15-64 years: 54.3% (male 185,107/female 190,139)
65 years and over: 3% (male 9,672/female 10,983) (2006 est.)
Median age:
Definition Field Listing
total: 18.6 years
male: 18.4 years
female: 18.9 years (2006 est.)
Population growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
2.87% (2006 est.)
Birth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
36.93 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Death rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
8.2 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Net migration rate:
Definition Field Listing
0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Sex ratio:
Definition Field Listing
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.97 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.88 male(s)/female
total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2006 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 72.85 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 81.27 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 64.19 deaths/1,000 live births (2006 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total population: 62.33 years
male: 60 years
female: 64.72 years (2006 est.)
Total fertility rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
5.03 children born/woman (2006 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0.12% (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA
Nationality:
Definition Field Listing
noun: Comoran(s)
adjective: Comoran
Ethnic groups:
Definition Field Listing
Antalote, Cafre, Makoa, Oimatsaha, Sakalava
Religions:
Definition Field Listing
Sunni Muslim 98%, Roman Catholic 2%
Languages:
Definition Field Listing
Arabic (official), French (official), Shikomoro (a blend of Swahili and Arabic)
Literacy:
Definition Field Listing
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 56.5%
male: 63.6%
female: 49.3% (2003 est.)
   Government    Comoros Top of Page
Country name:
Definition Field Listing
conventional long form: Union of the Comoros
conventional short form: Comoros
local long form: Union des Comores
local short form: Comores
Government type:
Definition Field Listing
independent republic
Capital:
Definition Field Listing
Moroni
Administrative divisions:
Definition Field Listing
3 islands and 4 municipalities*; Grande Comore (Njazidja), Anjouan (Nzwani), Domoni*, Fomboni*, Moheli (Mwali), Moroni*, Moutsamoudou*
Independence:
Definition Field Listing
6 July 1975 (from France)
National holiday:
Definition Field Listing
Independence Day, 6 July (1975)
Constitution:
Definition Field Listing
23 December 2001
Legal system:
Definition Field Listing
French and Sharia (Islamic) law in a new consolidated code
Suffrage:
Definition Field Listing
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
Definition Field Listing
chief of state: President Ahmed Abdallah SAMBI (since 26 May 2006);
head of government: President Ahmed Abdallah SAMBI (since 26 May 2006);
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president
elections: as defined by the 2001 constitution, the presidency rotates every four years among the elected presidents from the three main islands in the Union; election last held 14 May 2006 (next to be held by May 2010); prime minister appointed by the president; note - the post of Prime Minister has been vacant since May 2002
election results: Ahmed Abdallah SAMBI elected president; percent of vote - Ahmed Abdallah SAMBI 58.0%, Ibrahim HALIDI 28.3%, Mohamed DJAANFAMI 13.7%
Legislative branch:
Definition Field Listing
unicameral Assembly of the Union (33 seats; 15 deputies are selected by the individual islands' local assemblies and the 18 by universal suffrage; deputies serve for five years);
elections: last held 18 and 25 April 2004 (next to be held in 2009)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - CdIA 12, CRC 6; note - 15 additional seats are filled by deputies from local island assemblies
Judicial branch:
Definition Field Listing
Supreme Court or Cour Supremes (two members appointed by the president, two members elected by the Federal Assembly, one elected by the Council of each island, and others are former presidents of the republic)
Political parties and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
Convention for the Renewal of the Comoros [AZALI Assowmani]; Camp of the Autonomous Islands (a coalition of parties organized by the island Presidents in opposition to the Union President); Front National pour la Justice or FNJ (Islamic party in opposition) [Ahmed RACHID]; Mouvement pour la Democratie et le Progress or MDP-NGDC [Abbas DJOUSSOUF]; Parti Comorien pour la Democratie et le Progress or PCDP [Ali MROUDJAE]; Rassemblement National pour le Development or RND [Omar TAMOU, Abdoulhamid AFFRAITANE]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
NA
International organization participation:
Definition Field Listing
ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AMF, AU, COMESA, FAO, FZ, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt (signatory), ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS (observer), ILO, IMF, IMO, InOC, Interpol, IOC, ITU, LAS, NAM, OIC, OIF, OPCW (signatory), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO
Diplomatic representation in the US:
Definition Field Listing
chief of mission: Representative to the US and Ambassador to the UN Mahmoud M. ABOUD
chancery: Mission to the US, 336 East 45th Street (2nd floor), New York, NY 10017
telephone: [1] (212) 750-1637
Diplomatic representation from the US:
Definition Field Listing
the US does not have an embassy in Comoros; the ambassador to Madagascar is accredited to Comoros
Flag description:
Definition Field Listing
four equal horizontal bands of yellow (top), white, red, and blue with a green isosceles triangle based on the hoist; centered within the triangle is a white crescent with the convex side facing the hoist and four white, five-pointed stars placed vertically in a line between the points of the crescent; the horizontal bands and the four stars represent the four main islands of the archipelago - Mwali, Njazidja, Nzwani, and Mayotte (a territorial collectivity of France, but claimed by Comoros); the crescent, stars, and color green are traditional symbols of Islam
   Economy    Comoros Top of Page
Economy - overview:
Definition Field Listing
One of the world's poorest countries, Comoros is made up of three islands that have inadequate transportation links, a young and rapidly increasing population, and few natural resources. The low educational level of the labor force contributes to a subsistence level of economic activity, high unemployment, and a heavy dependence on foreign grants and technical assistance. Agriculture, including fishing, hunting, and forestry, contributes 40% to GDP, employs 80% of the labor force, and provides most of the exports. The country is not self-sufficient in food production; rice, the main staple, accounts for the bulk of imports. The government - which is hampered by internal political disputes - is struggling to upgrade education and technical training, privatize commercial and industrial enterprises, improve health services, diversify exports, promote tourism, and reduce the high population growth rate. Increased foreign support is essential if the goal of 4% annual GDP growth is to be met. Remittances from 150,000 Comorans abroad help supplement GDP.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$441 million (2002 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate):
Definition Field Listing
$402 million (2005 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
3% (2005 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$600 (2005 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture: 40%
industry: 4%
services: 56% (2001 est.)
Labor force:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
144,500 (1996 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture: 80%
industry and services: 20%
Unemployment rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
20% (1996 est.)
Population below poverty line:
Definition Field Listing
60% (2002 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
Definition Field Listing
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
3% (2005 est.)
Budget:
Definition Field Listing
revenues: $27.6 million
expenditures: $NA (2001 est.)
Agriculture - products:
Definition Field Listing
vanilla, cloves, perfume essences, copra, coconuts, bananas, cassava (tapioca)
Industries:
Definition Field Listing
tourism, perfume distillation
Industrial production growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
-2% (1999 est.)
Electricity - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
18 million kWh (2003)
Electricity - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
16.74 million kWh (2003)
Electricity - exports:
Definition Field Listing
0 kWh (2003)
Electricity - imports:
Definition Field Listing
0 kWh (2003)
Oil - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 bbl/day (2003)
Oil - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
700 bbl/day (2003 est.)
Oil - exports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA bbl/day
Oil - imports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA bbl/day
Natural gas - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 cu m (2003 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 cu m (2003 est.)
Current account balance:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
-$17 million (2005 est.)
Exports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$34 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)
Exports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
vanilla, ylang-ylang (perfume essence), cloves, copra
Exports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
France 27.6%, Singapore 16.7%, Japan 15.1%, Germany 13.6%, US 5.8%, Netherlands 5.2% (2005)
Imports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$115 million f.o.b. (2004 est.)
Imports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
rice and other foodstuffs, consumer goods, petroleum products, cement, transport equipment
Imports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
France 20.3%, South Africa 12.1%, Kenya 8.3%, UAE 8.3%, Pakistan 5.2%, Mauritius 4.6%, Belgium 4.2% (2005)
Debt - external:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$232 million (2000 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
Definition Field Listing
$24 million (2003 est.)
Currency (code):
Definition Field Listing
Comoran franc (KMF)
Exchange rates:
Definition Field Listing
Comoran francs (KMF) per US dollar - 395.6 (2005), 396.21 (2004), 435.9 (2003), 522.74 (2002), 549.78 (2001)
note: the Comoran franc is pegged to the euro at a rate of 491.9677 Comoran francs per euro
Fiscal year:
Definition Field Listing
calendar year
   Communications    Comoros Top of Page
Telephones - main lines in use:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
13,200 (2003)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
16,100 (2005)
Telephone system:
Definition Field Listing
general assessment: sparse system of microwave radio relay and HF radiotelephone communication stations
domestic: HF radiotelephone communications and microwave radio relay
international: country code - 269; HF radiotelephone communications to Madagascar and Reunion
Radio broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
AM 1, FM 4, shortwave 1 (2001)
Television broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
NA
Internet country code:
Definition Field Listing
.km
Internet hosts:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
6 (2005)
Internet users:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
8,000 (2005)
   Transportation    Comoros Top of Page
Airports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
4 (2005)
Airports - with paved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 4
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 3 (2005)
Roadways:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 880 km
paved: 673 km
unpaved: 207 km (1999)
Merchant marine:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 117 ships (1000 GRT or over) 522,157 GRT/738,339 DWT
by type: bulk carrier 10, cargo 85, container 1, livestock carrier 1, passenger 2, passenger/cargo 1, petroleum tanker 7, refrigerated cargo 5, roll on/roll off 4, specialized tanker 1
foreign-owned: 59 (Bangladesh 1, Bulgaria 1, Canada 1, Greece 8, India 1, Kenya 1, Kuwait 1, Lebanon 3, Nigeria 2, Norway 1, Pakistan 2, Philippines 1, Russia 5, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 1, Saudi Arabia 3, Syria 3, Turkey 10, Ukraine 12, US 2) (2005)
Ports and terminals:
Definition Field Listing
Mayotte, Moutsamoudou
   Military    Comoros Top of Page
Military branches:
Definition Field Listing
Comoran Security Force
Manpower available for military service:
Definition Field Listing
males age 18-49: 138,940
females age 18-49: 139,491 (2005 est.)
Manpower fit for military service:
Definition Field Listing
males age 18-49: 98,792
females age 18-49: 106,415 (2005 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$12.87 million (2005 est.)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
3% (2005 est.)
   Transnational Issues    Comoros Top of Page
Disputes - international:
Definition Field Listing
claims French-administered Mayotte

This page was last updated on 20 July, 2006


Source: CIA Factbook