Fast Facts

Population:
1,640,000
Capital:
Gaborone; 199,000
Area:
581,730 square kilometers (224,607 square miles)
Language:
English, Setswana
Religion:
Indigenous beliefs, Christian
Currency:
Pula
Life Expectancy:
37
GDP per Capita:
U.S. $8,500
Literacy Percent:
80
Flag: Botswana
Map: Botswana

A landlocked country in southern Africa, Botswana enjoys a mild climate in the east; the Kalahari Desert dominates the west and south. The Okavango Delta and Chobe National Park in the north are areas of outstanding natural beauty, rich in animal life. Elephants at Chobe are the largest in body size of all living elephants; they number about 120,000. Stable and prosperous, Botswana has blossomed since independence from Britain in 1966. It is Africa's longest continuous democracy and one of the world's biggest diamond producers.

ECONOMY

  • Industry: Diamonds, copper, nickel, salt, soda ash, potash, livestock processing, textiles
  • Agriculture: Sorghum, maize, millet; livestock
  • Exports: Diamonds, copper, nickel, soda ash, meat

—Text From National Geographic Atlas of the World, Eighth Edition

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