Fast Facts

Population:
1,138,000
Capital:
Mbabane (administrative); 70,000—Lobamba (legislative and royal); 4,400
Area:
17,363 square kilometers (6,704 square miles)
Language:
English, siSwati
Religion:
Indigenous beliefs, Roman Catholic, Muslim
Currency:
Lilangeni
Life Expectancy:
45
GDP per Capita:
U.S. $4,800
Literacy Percent:
82
Flag: Swaziland
Map: Swaziland

Swaziland, consisting mostly of high plateaus and mountains, is in southern Africa. In 1949 the British government rejected a South African request for control of this small, landlocked nation. Independence was granted in 1968. The death of King Sobhuza in 1982 led to the coronation of 18-year-old King Mswati III in 1986. The king is an absolute monarch with supreme executive, legislative, and judicial powers. Nearly 60 percent of Swazi territory is held by the crown.

ECONOMY

  • Industry: Mining (coal), wood pulp, sugar, soft drink concentrates
  • Agriculture: Sugarcane, cotton, corn, tobacco; cattle
  • Exports: Soft drink concentrates, sugar, wood pulp, cotton yarn

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

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