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Introduction :: Ghana
Background:
Formed from the merger of the British colony of the Gold Coast and the Togoland trust territory, Ghana in 1957 became the first sub-Saharan country in colonial Africa to gain its independence. Ghana endured a long series of coups before Lt. Jerry RAWLINGS took power in 1981 and banned political parties. After approving a new constitution and restoring multiparty politics in 1992, RAWLINGS won presidential elections in 1992 and 1996, but was constitutionally prevented from running for a third term in 2000. John KUFUOR succeeded him and was reelected in 2004. John Atta MILLS took over as head of state in early 2009.
Geography :: Ghana
Location:
Western Africa, bordering the Gulf of Guinea, between Cote d'Ivoire and Togo
Geographic coordinates:
8 00 N, 2 00 W
Map references:
Africa
Area:
total: 238,533 sq km
country comparison to the world: 81
land: 227,533 sq km
water: 11,000 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly smaller than Oregon
Land boundaries:
total: 2,094 km
border countries: Burkina Faso 549 km, Cote d'Ivoire 668 km, Togo 877 km
Coastline:
539 km
Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm
Climate:
Current Weather
tropical; warm and comparatively dry along southeast coast; hot and humid in southwest; hot and dry in north
Terrain:
mostly low plains with dissected plateau in south-central area
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Mount Afadjato 885 m
Natural resources:
gold, timber, industrial diamonds, bauxite, manganese, fish, rubber, hydropower, petroleum, silver, salt, limestone
Land use:
arable land: 17.54%
permanent crops: 9.22%
other: 73.24% (2005)
Irrigated land:
310 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources:
53.2 cu km (2001)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):
total: 0.98 cu km/yr (24%/10%/66%)
per capita: 44 cu m/yr (2000)
Natural hazards:
dry, dusty, northeastern harmattan winds occur from January to March; droughts
Environment - current issues:
recurrent drought in north severely affects agricultural activities; deforestation; overgrazing; soil erosion; poaching and habitat destruction threatens wildlife populations; water pollution; inadequate supplies of potable water
Environment - international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Marine Life Conservation
Geography - note:
Lake Volta is the world's largest artificial lake
People :: Ghana
Population:
24,339,838
country comparison to the world: 47
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 (July 2010 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 37.2% (male 4,494,633/female 4,394,074)
15-64 years: 59.2% (male 7,065,273/female 7,086,023)
65 years and over: 3.5% (male 389,886/female 457,923) (2010 est.)
Median age:
total: 21.1 years
male: 20.8 years
female: 21.3 years (2010 est.)
Population growth rate:
1.855% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 64
Birth rate:
28.09 births/1,000 population (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 48
Death rate:
8.93 deaths/1,000 population (July 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 75
Net migration rate:
-0.61 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 144
Urbanization:
urban population: 50% of total population (2008)
rate of urbanization: 3.5% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.84 male(s)/female
total population: 1 male(s)/female (2010 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: 49.89 deaths/1,000 live births
country comparison to the world: 52
male: 53.38 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 46.29 deaths/1,000 live births (2010 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 60.55 years
country comparison to the world: 187
male: 59.36 years
female: 61.78 years (2010 est.)
Total fertility rate:
3.57 children born/woman (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 46
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
1.9% (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 33
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
260,000 (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 27
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
21,000 (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 22
Major infectious diseases:
degree of risk: very high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: malaria
water contact disease: schistosomiasis
respiratory disease: meningococcal meningitis
animal contact disease: rabies
note: highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza has been identified in this country; it poses a negligible risk with extremely rare cases possible among US citizens who have close contact with birds (2009)
Nationality:
noun: Ghanaian(s)
adjective: Ghanaian
Ethnic groups:
Akan 45.3%, Mole-Dagbon 15.2%, Ewe 11.7%, Ga-Dangme 7.3%, Guan 4%, Gurma 3.6%, Grusi 2.6%, Mande-Busanga 1%, other tribes 1.4%, other 7.8% (2000 census)
Religions:
Christian 68.8% (Pentecostal/Charismatic 24.1%, Protestant 18.6%, Catholic 15.1%, other 11%), Muslim 15.9%, traditional 8.5%, other 0.7%, none 6.1% (2000 census)
Languages:
Asante 14.8%, Ewe 12.7%, Fante 9.9%, Boron (Brong) 4.6%, Dagomba 4.3%, Dangme 4.3%, Dagarte (Dagaba) 3.7%, Akyem 3.4%, Ga 3.4%, Akuapem 2.9%, other 36.1% (includes English (official)) (2000 census)
Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 57.9%
male: 66.4%
female: 49.8% (2000 census)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 10 years
male: 10 years
female: 9 years (2007)
Education expenditures:
5.4% of GDP (2005)
country comparison to the world: 52
Government :: Ghana
Country name:
conventional long form: Republic of Ghana
conventional short form: Ghana
former: Gold Coast
Government type:
constitutional democracy
Capital:
name: Accra
geographic coordinates: 5 33 N, 0 13 W
time difference: UTC 0 (5 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions:
10 regions; Ashanti, Brong-Ahafo, Central, Eastern, Greater Accra, Northern, Upper East, Upper West, Volta, Western
Independence:
6 March 1957 (from the UK)
National holiday:
Independence Day, 6 March (1957)
Constitution:
approved 28 April 1992
Legal system:
based on English common law and customary law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: President John Evans Atta MILLS (since 7 January 2009); Vice President John Dramani MAHAMA (since 7 January 2009); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
head of government: President John Evans Atta MILLS (since 7 January 2009); Vice President John Dramani MAHAMA (since 7 January 2009)
cabinet: Council of Ministers; president nominates members subject to approval by Parliament
elections: president and vice president elected on the same ticket by popular vote for four-year terms (eligible for a second term); election last held on 7 and 28 December 2008 (next to be held on 7 December 2012)
election results: John Evans Atta MILLS elected president in run-off election; percent of vote - John Evans Atta MILLS 50.23%, Nana Addo Dankwa AKUFO-ADDO 49.77%
Legislative branch:
unicameral Parliament (230 seats; members elected by direct, popular vote to serve four-year terms)
elections: last held on 7 December 2008 (next to be held on 7 December 2012)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NDC 114, NPP 107, PNC 2, CPP 1, independent 4, other 2
Judicial branch:
Supreme Court
Political parties and leaders:
Convention People's Party or CPP [Ladi NYLANDER]; Democratic Freedom Party or DFP [Alhaji Abudu Rahman ISSAKAH]; Every Ghanaian Living Everywhere or EGLE; Great Consolidated Popular Party or GCPP [Dan LARTEY]; National Democratic Congress or NDC [Dr. Kwabena ADJEI]; New Patriotic Party or NPP [Peter MAC-MANU]; People's National Convention or PNC [Alhaji Amed RAMADAN]; Reform Party [Kyeretwie OPUKU]; United Renaissance Party or URP [Charles WAYO]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Christian Aid (water rights); Committee for Joint Action or CJA (education reform); National Coalition Against the Privatization of Water or CAP (water rights); Oxfam (water rights); Public Citizen (water rights); Students Coalition Against EPA [Kwabena Ososukene OKAI] (education reform); Third World Network (education reform)
International organization participation:
ACP, AfDB, AU, C, ECOWAS, FAO, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, MINURSO, MONUSCO, NAM, OAS (observer), OIF (associate member), OPCW, UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, UNMIL, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Daniel Ohene AGYEKUM
chancery: 3512 International Drive NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 686-4520
FAX: [1] (202) 686-4527
consulate(s) general: New York
Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Donald G. TEITELBAUM
embassy: 24 4th Circular Rd. Cantonments, Accra
mailing address: P. O. Box 194, Accra
telephone: [233] (21) 741-000
FAX: [233] (21) 741-389
Flag description:
three equal horizontal bands of red (top), yellow, and green, with a large black five-pointed star centered in the yellow band; red symbolizes the blood shed for independence, yellow represents the country's mineral wealth, while green stands for its forests and natural wealth; the black star is said to be the lodestar of African freedom
note: uses the popular Pan-African colors of Ethiopia; similar to the flag of Bolivia, which has a coat of arms centered in the yellow band
National anthem:
name: "God Bless Our Homeland Ghana"
lyrics/music: unknown/Philip GBEHO
note: music adopted 1957, lyrics adopted 1966; the lyrics were changed twice, once when a republic was declared in 1960 and again after a 1966 coup
Economy :: Ghana
Economy - overview:
Ghana is well endowed with natural resources and agriculture accounts for roughly one-third of GDP and employs more than half of the workforce, mainly small landholders. The services sector accounts for 50% of GDP. Gold and cocoa production and individual remittances are major sources of foreign exchange. Oil production at Ghana's offshore Jubilee field began in mid-December and is expected to boost economic growth. Ghana signed a Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) Compact in 2006, which aims to assist in transforming Ghana's agricultural sector. Ghana opted for debt relief under the Heavily Indebted Poor Country (HIPC) program in 2002, and is also benefiting from the Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative that took effect in 2006. In 2009 Ghana signed a three-year Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility with the IMF to improve macroeconomic stability, private sector competitiveness, human resource development, and good governance and civic responsibility. Sound macro-economic management along with high prices for gold and cocoa helped sustain GDP growth in 2008-10. In early 2010 President John Atta MILLS targeted recovery from high inflation and current account and budget deficits as his priorities.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$38.24 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 99
$36.53 billion (2009 est.)
$35.09 billion (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars
GDP (official exchange rate):
$18.06 billion (2010 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
4.7% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 65
4.1% (2009 est.)
7.3% (2008 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):
$1,600 (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 201
$1,500 (2009 est.)
$1,500 (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 33.7%
industry: 24.7%
services: 41.6% (2010 est.)
Labor force:
10.56 million (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 48
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 56%
industry: 15%
services: 29% (2005 est.)
Unemployment rate:
11% (2000 est.)
country comparison to the world: 122
Population below poverty line:
28.5% (2007 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 2%
highest 10%: 32.8% (2006)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
39.4 (2005-06)
country comparison to the world: 65
40.7 (1999)
Investment (gross fixed):
39.8% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 4
Public debt:
59.9% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 33
55.2% of GDP (2009 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
10.9% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 200
19.3% (2009 est.)
Central bank discount rate:
18% (31 December 2009)
country comparison to the world: 15
17% (31 December 2008)
Commercial bank prime lending rate:
NA% (31 December 2009 est.)
NA% (31 December 2008 est.)
Stock of narrow money:
$6.26 billion (31 December 2010 est)
$5.203 billion (31 December 2009 est)
Stock of broad money:
$9.583 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$7.823 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
Stock of domestic credit:
$7.155 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 106
$6.987 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares:
$2.508 billion (31 December 2009)
country comparison to the world: 88
$3.394 billion (31 December 2008)
$2.38 billion (31 December 2007)
Agriculture - products:
cocoa, rice, cassava (tapioca), peanuts, corn, shea nuts, bananas; timber
Industries:
mining, lumbering, light manufacturing, aluminum smelting, food processing, cement, small commercial ship building
Industrial production growth rate:
5% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 64
Electricity - production:
6.746 billion kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 102
Electricity - consumption:
5.702 billion kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 106
Electricity - exports:
249 million kWh (2007 est.)
Electricity - imports:
435 million kWh (2007 est.)
Oil - production:
7,081 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 88
Oil - consumption:
57,000 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 94
Oil - exports:
4,843 bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 105
Oil - imports:
45,380 bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 90
Oil - proved reserves:
15 million bbl (1 January 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 87
Natural gas - production:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 192
Natural gas - consumption:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 181
Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 76
Natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 175
Natural gas - proved reserves:
22.65 billion cu m (1 January 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 75
Current account balance:
-$1.871 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 155
-$1.199 billion (2009 est.)
Exports:
$7.326 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 99
$5.84 billion (2009 est.)
Exports - commodities:
gold, cocoa, timber, tuna, bauxite, aluminum, manganese ore, diamonds, horticulture
Exports - partners:
Netherlands 13.45%, UK 7.87%, France 5.85%, Ukraine 5.84%, Malaysia 3.97% (2009)
Imports:
$10.18 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 89
$8.046 billion (2009 est.)
Imports - commodities:
capital equipment, petroleum, foodstuffs
Imports - partners:
China 16.8%, Nigeria 11.88%, US 6.63%, Cote d'Ivoire 5.99%, India 5.57%, France 5.09%, UK 4.23% (2009)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$3.8 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 77
$3.165 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
Debt - external:
$6.483 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 97
$5.427 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
$NA
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:
$NA
Exchange rates:
cedis (GHC) per US dollar - 1.4 (2010), 1.4 (2009), 1.1 (2008), 0.95 (2007), 9,174.8 (2006)
Communications :: Ghana
Telephones - main lines in use:
267,400 (2009)
country comparison to the world: 120
Telephones - mobile cellular:
15.109 million (2009)
country comparison to the world: 49
Telephone system:
general assessment: primarily microwave radio relay; wireless local loop has been installed; outdated and unreliable fixed-line infrastructure heavily concentrated in Accra
domestic: competition among multiple mobile-cellular providers has spurred growth with a subscribership of more than 60 per 100 persons and rising
international: country code - 233; landing point for the SAT-3/WASC, Main One, and GLO-1 fiber-optic submarine cables that provide connectivity to South Africa, Europe, and Asia; satellite earth stations - 4 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean); microwave radio relay link to Panaftel system connects Ghana to its neighbors (2009)
Broadcast media:
state-owned TV station, 2 state-owned radio networks; several privately-owned TV stations and a large number of privately-owned radio stations; transmissions of multiple international broadcasters are accessible; several cable and satellite TV subscription services are obtainable (2007)
Internet country code:
.gh
Internet hosts:
41,082 (2010)
country comparison to the world: 93
Internet users:
1.297 million (2009)
country comparison to the world: 93
Transportation :: Ghana
Airports:
11 (2010)
country comparison to the world: 155
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 7
over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2010)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 3
under 914 m: 1 (2010)
Pipelines:
oil 5 km; refined products 309 km (2009)
Railways:
total: 947 km
country comparison to the world: 93
narrow gauge: 947 km 1.067-m gauge (2008)
Roadways:
total: 62,221 km
country comparison to the world: 74
paved: 9,955 km
unpaved: 52,266 km (2006)
Waterways:
1,293 km
country comparison to the world: 58
note: 168 km for launches and lighters on Volta, Ankobra, and Tano rivers; 1,125 km of arterial and feeder waterways on Lake Volta (2008)
Merchant marine:
total: 4
country comparison to the world: 135
by type: petroleum tanker 1, refrigerated cargo 3
foreign-owned: 2 (Brazil 1, South Korea 1) (2010)
Ports and terminals:
Takoradi, Tema
Military :: Ghana
Military branches:
Ghanaian Army, Ghanaian Navy, Ghanaian Air Force (2010)
Military service age and obligation:
18 years of age for voluntary military service, with basic education certificate; no conscription (2010)
Manpower available for military service:
males age 16-49: 6,126,707
females age 16-49: 6,058,958 (2010 est.)
Manpower fit for military service:
males age 16-49: 4,022,056
females age 16-49: 4,101,964 (2010 est.)
Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
male: 270,993
female: 263,961 (2010 est.)
Military expenditures:
1.7% of GDP (2009)
country comparison to the world: 90
Transnational Issues :: Ghana
Disputes - international:
Ghana struggles to accommodate returning nationals who worked in the cocoa plantations and escaped fighting in Cote d'Ivoire
Refugees and internally displaced persons:
refugees (country of origin): 35,653 (Liberia); 8,517 (Togo) (2007)
Illicit drugs:
illicit producer of cannabis for the international drug trade; major transit hub for Southwest and Southeast Asian heroin and, to a lesser extent, South American cocaine destined for Europe and the US; widespread crime and money laundering problem, but the lack of a well developed financial infrastructure limits the country's utility as a money laundering center; significant domestic cocaine and cannabis use

Credits: CIA World Factbook

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