Background: After gaining independence in 1960, the former French colony of the Middle Congo became the Republic of the Congo. In 1990, the quarter-century experiment with Marxism ended, and in 1992 a democratically elected government came to power. In 1997, after a short civil war, the former Marxist president of SASSU-NGESSO was reinstated.
Location: West Africa, on the southern coast of the Atlantic Ocean, between Angola and Gabon. See franciscogardening.com to know more about Republic of the Congo Geography.
Geographic coordinates: 1° 00′ S. latitude, 15° 00′ E
Reference map: Africa.
Area: total: 342,000 square kilometers; land surface area: 341,500 square kilometers; water surface area: 500 km2
Comparative area: slightly smaller than the state of Montana.
Land borders: total: 5,504 km; with neighboring states: with Angola 201 km, with Cameroon 523 km, with the Central African Republic 467 km, with the Democratic Republic of the Congo 2,410 km, with Gabon 1,903 km.
Coastline: 169 km.
Maritime claims: territorial waters: 200 nautical miles.
Climate: tropical; rainy season (March to June); dry season (June to October); constant high temperature and humidity; especially exhausting climate in the territories along the equator.
Relief: coastal lowland; central plateau, depressions in the north and south.
Maximum and minimum heights: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m; highest point: Mount Berongu 903 m.
Natural resources: oil, timber, potash, lead, zinc, uranium, copper, phosphates, natural gas, hydropower resources.
Land use: arable land: 0%; cultivated land: 0%; pastures: 29%; forests and plantations: 62%; others: 9% (1993 est.).
Irrigated land: 10 sq. km. (1993 est.).
Natural Hazards: seasonal floods.
Actual environmental problems: air pollution by exhaust gases; water pollution by discharged sewage; unsuitability of tap water for drinking; deforestation.
International environmental conventions: member: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 1983, Tropical Timber 1994, Wetlands; signed but not ratified: Law of the Sea.
Note to the section “Geography”: about 70% of the population lives in Brazzaville, Pointe-Noire, or along the railway connecting these cities.
Population: 2,894,336; note: estimates for this country take into account rising AIDS deaths; due to the spread of AIDS, life expectancy, population size and population growth may actually be lower, and child mortality and overall mortality rates correspondingly higher; there may also be changes in age structure and sex ratios (July 2001 est.).
Age structure: under 14: 42.43% (male 618,411; female 609,633); 15 to 64 years old: 54.23% (male 765,501; female 804,125); over 65: 3.34% (male 38,772; female 57,894) (2001 est.).
Population growth: 2.2% (2001 est.).
Birth rate: 38.24 newborns / 1000 people. (2001 est.).
Mortality: 16.22 deaths / 1000 people. (2001 est.).
Migration: 0 people /1000 people (2001 est.).
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male/female; under 15: 1.01 male/female; 15 to 64 years old: 0.95 male/female; over 65: 0.67 male/female; for the general population: 0.97 male/female (2001 est.);
Child mortality: 99.73 deaths/1000 live births (2001 est.).
Life expectancy: for the general population: 47.57 years; men: 44.38 years; women: 50.85 years (2001 est.).
General birth rate: 5.0 children/wives. (2001 est.).
Proportion of the adult population infected with HIV: 6.43% (1999 est.).
Number of people infected with HIV: 86,000 (1999 est.).
AIDS deaths: 8,600 (1999 est.).
Nationality: noun: Congolese; adjective: Congolese.
Ethnic groups: Kongo 48%, Sanga 20%, Mboshi 12%, Teke 17%, no data on the number of Europeans; note – the number of Europeans (mostly French) before the 1997 civil war was estimated at 8,500; in May 1998, about half of this number of Europeans remained in the country due to the reduction in 1997 of business relations with foreign partners.
Believers: Christians 50%, animists 48%, Muslims 2%.
Language(s): French (official), Lingalai Monokutuba (languages for trade negotiations using Latin script), many local languages and dialects (mainly Kikongo).
Literacy: definition: persons aged 15 and over who can read and write; for the general population: 74.9%; men: 83.1%; women: 67.2% (1995 est.).
conventional long form: Republic of the Congo;
Common short form: no; local long form: Republique du Congo; local short form: no; former: Middle Congo, Congo-Brazzaville, Congo.
State structure: republic.
Administrative divisions: 9 regions and 1 commune*: Brazzaville*, Buenza, Kuilu, Cuvette, Leku-mu, Likuala, Niari, Plateau, Pool, Sanga.
Independence: August 15, 1960 (before 1960, a colony of France).
National holiday: Independence Day, 15 August (since 1960).
Constitution: draft constitution approved by the transitional parliament in September 2000.
Legal system: based on the French civil law system and customary law.
Suffrage: from 18 years old; universal.
chief of state: President Denis SASSOU-NGUESSO (since October 25, 1997, after the civil war, during which he overthrew the previously elected president Pascal LISSOUBA [Pascal USSOUBA]); note – the president is both head of state and head of government;
head of government: President Denis SASSOU-NGESSO (since 25 October 1997); note – the president is both head of state and head of government;
government: a council of ministers appointed by the president; elections: the president is elected by popular vote for a five-year term; elections were last held on 16 August 1992 (next to be held on 27 July 1997, but postponed for several years, necessary for the drafting of a new constitution); election results: 1992 Pascal LISSUBA elected president; percentage of votes – Pascal LISSUBA 61.3%, Bernard KOLELAS (Bernard KOLELAS) 38.7%; note – in 1997, P. LISSUBA was removed; he was succeeded by Denis SASSOU-NGESSO.
Legislature: unicameral National Transitional Council (75 members elected in January 1998 by 1,420 reconciliation forum delegates); note – the National Transitional Council replaced the bicameral Parliament; elections: National Transitional Council last held in January 1998 (next to be held in 2001); note – by the next elections, the National Transitional Council should be replaced by a bicameral assembly; election results: National Transitional Council, distribution of votes by party – no data; distribution of seats by parties – no data.
Judiciary: Supreme Court.
Political parties and leaders: the most important of the many parties are: the Democratic and Patriotic Forces (alliance of the Convention for Alternative Democracy, the Congolese Party of Labor (PCT), the Liberal Republican Party, the National Union for Democracy and Progress, the Patriotic Union for National Reconstruction and the Union for National Renewal) (Denis SASSU -NGESSO, President); Association for Democracy and Social Progress (RDPS) (Jean-Pierre Thystere TCHICAYA, President); Congolese Movement for Democracy and Integral Development (MCDDI) (Michel MAM-POUYA); Pan African Union for Social Development (UPADS) (Martin MBERI); Union of Democratic Forces (UFD) (Sebastian EBAO).
Political influence groups and their leaders: Congolese Trade Union Congress (CSC); General Union of Congolese Pupils and Students (UGEEC); Revolutionary Union of Congolese Women (UJSC); Union of Congolese Socialist Youth (UJSC).
Participation in international organizations: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, BDEAC, CCC, CEEAC, CEMAS, ECA, FAO, FZ, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ITU, NAM, OAU, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO.
Diplomatic representation in the USA: head of mission: the place is vacant; Chargé d’Affaires ad interim Serge MOM-BOULI; office: 4891 Colorado Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20011; phone:  (202) 726-5500; fax: [\] (202) 726-1860.
US Diplomatic Mission: Chief of Mission: Ambassador David H. KAEUPER; embassy: no data; postal address: no data; phone:  (88) 43608; fax:  (88) 41036; note: the embassy is temporarily located at the US Embassy in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (address: US Embassy Kinshasa, 310 Avenue des Aviateurs, Kinshasa).
Flag Description: Divided diagonally by a yellow stripe running from the bottom corner of the hoist; the upper triangle (with the base at the pole) is green, the lower one is red; The colors of the Ethiopian flag, which are popular throughout Africa, are used.