Fast Facts

Population:
9,453,000
Capital:
Conakry; 1,366,000
Area:
245,857 square kilometers (94,926 square miles)
Language:
French, local languages
Religion:
Muslim, Christian, indigenous beliefs
Currency:
Guinean franc
Life Expectancy:
49
GDP per Capita:
U.S. $2,100
Literacy Percent:
36
Flag: Guinea
Map: Guinea

Facing the Atlantic Ocean, Guinea is a West African country with a narrow coastal plain and interior highlands that are forested in the southeast. After independence from France in 1958, repressive socialist rule plunged the country into economic ruin. A 1984 coup brought in a military government until 1990, after which Guinea began the transition to a multiparty democratic system. Liberalized commercial policies, plus diamonds and gold, diversify an economy overly dependent on the bauxite industry.

ECONOMY

  • Industry: Bauxite, gold, diamonds, alumina refining, light manufacturing
  • Agriculture: Rice, coffee, pineapples, palm kernels; cattle; timber
  • Exports: Bauxite, alumina, gold, diamonds, coffee

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

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