Lesotho 1991Lesotho

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Lesotho
Lesotho 

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Lesotho - Introduction 1991
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Background: Basutoland was renamed the Kingdom of Lesotho upon independence from the UK in 1966. The country has been ruled by the military since 1970.


Lesotho - Geography 1991
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Location

Geographic coordinates

Map reference

Area

Land boundaries: 909 km with South Africa

Coastline: none--landlocked

Maritime claims: none--landlocked

Climate: temperate; cool to cold, dry winters; hot, wet summers

Terrain: mostly highland with some plateaus, hills, and mountains

Elevation

Natural resources: some diamonds and other minerals, water, agricultural and grazing land
Land use

Land use: arable land: 10%; permanent crops: 0%; meadows and pastures 66%; forest and woodland 0%; other 24%

Irrigated land

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards

Geography
Note: landlocked; surrounded by South Africa; Highlands Water Project will control, store, and redirect water to South Africa


Lesotho - People 1991
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Population: 1,801,174 (July 1991), growth rate 2.6% (1991)

Nationality: noun--Mosotho (sing.), Basotho (pl.; adjective--Basotho

Ethnic groups: Sotho 99.7%; Europeans 1,600, Asians 800

Languages: Sesotho (southern Sotho) and English (official; also Zulu and Xhosa

Religions: Christian 80%, rest indigenous beliefs

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate

Birth rate: 36 births/1000 population (1991)

Death rate: 10 deaths/1000 population (1991)

Net migration rate: 0 migrants/1000 population (1991)

Population distribution

Urbanization

Major urban areas

Environment
Current issues: population pressure forcing settlement in marginal areas results in overgrazing, severe soil erosion, soil exhaustion; desertification

Air pollutants

Sex ratio

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 78 deaths/1000 live births (1991)

Life expectancy at birth: 59 years male, 63 years female (1991)

Total fertility rate: 4.8 children born/woman (1991)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access

Hiv/Aids

Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Literacy: 59% (male 44%, female 68%) age 15 and over can read and write (1966)

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment


Lesotho - Government 1991
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Country name: conventional long form: Kingdom of Lesotho

Government type: constitutional monarchy

Capital: Maseru

Administrative divisions: 10 districts; Berea, Butha-Buthe, Leribe, Mafeteng, Maseru, Mohales Hoek, Mokhotlong, Qachas Nek, Quthing, Thaba-Tseka

Dependent areas

Independence: 4 October 1966 (from UK; formerly Basutoland)

National holiday: Independence Day, 4 October (1966)

Constitution: 4 October 1966, suspended January 1970

Legal system: based on English common law and Roman-Dutch law; judicial review of legislative acts in High Court and Court of Appeal; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation

Citizenship

Suffrage: universal at age 21

Executive branch: Chief of State--King LETSIE III (since 12 November 1990 following dismissal of his father, exiled King MOSHOESHOE II, by Maj. Gen. LEKHANYA; Head of Government--Chairman of the Military Council Col. Elias Phisoana RAMAEMA (since 30 April 1991)

Legislative branch: Royal Lesotho Defense Force (RLDF; includes Army, Air Wing), Royal Lesotho Mounted Police

Judicial branch: High Court, Court of Appeal

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: ACP, AfDB, C, CCC, ECA, FAO, G-77, GATT, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, IDA, IFAD, IFC, ILO, IMF, INTERPOL, IOC, ITU, LORCS, NAM, OAU, SACU, SADCC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation
In the us: Ambassador W. T. VAN TONDER; Chancery at 2,511 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington DC 20,008; telephone (202) 797-5 534; US--Ambassador Leonard H.O. SPEARMAN, Jr.; Embassy at address NA, Maseru (mailing address is P. O. Box 333, Maseru 100; telephone [266] 312,666

Flag descriptionflag of Lesotho: divided diagonally from the lower hoist side corner; the upper half is white bearing the brown silhouette of a large shield with crossed spear and club; the lower half is a diagonal blue band with a green triangle in the corner Lesotho LesothoLesotho

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage


Lesotho - Economy 1991
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Economy overview: Small, landlocked, and mountainous, Lesotho has no important natural resources other than water. Its economy is based on agriculture, light manufacturing, and remittances from laborers employed in South Africa ($153 million in 1989). The great majority of households gain their livelihoods from subsistence farming and migrant labor. Manufacturing depends largely on farm products to support the milling, canning, leather, and jute industries; other industries include textile, clothing, and light engineering. Industry's share of GDP rose from 6% in 1982 to 15% in 1989. Political and economic instability in South Africa raise uncertainties for Lesotho's economy, especially with respect to migrant worker remittances--over one-third of GDP.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin

Agriculture products: accounts for 18% of GDP and employs 60-70% of all households; exceedingly primitive, mostly subsistence farming and livestock; principal crops are corn, wheat, pulses, sorghum, barley

Industries: food, beverages, textiles, handicrafts, tourism

Industrial production growth rate: 7.8% (1989 est.), accounts for 15% of GDP

Labor force: 689,000 economically active; 86.2% of resident population engaged in subsistence agriculture; roughly 60% of active male labor force works in South Africa
Labor force

Unemployment rate: 23% (1988)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Budget: revenues $280 million; expenditures $288 million, including capital expenditures of $NA (FY92 est.)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues

Revenue

Fiscal year: 1 April-31 March

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

Exports: $66 million (f.o.b., 1989)
Commodities: wool, mohair, wheat, cattle, peas, beans, corn, hides, skins, baskets
Partners: South Africa 53%, EC 30%, North and South America 13% (1989)

Imports: $499 million (f.o.b., 1989)
Commodities: mainly corn, building materials, clothing, vehicles, machinery, medicines, petroleum, oil, and lubricants
Partners: South Africa 95%, EC 2% (1989)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $370 million (December 1990 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: maloti (M) per US$1--2.5625 (January 1991), 2.5863 (1990), 2.6166 (1989), 2.2611 (1988), 2.0350 (1987), 2.2685 (1986), 2.1911 (1985; note--the Basotho loti is at par with the South African rand


Lesotho - Energy 1991
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Electricity access

Electricity production

Electricity consumption

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources

Petroleum

Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita


Lesotho - Communication 1991
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions


Lesotho - Military 1991
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Military expenditures
Percent of gdp: $55 million, 8.6% of GDP (1990 est.)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups


Lesotho - Transportation 1991
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 28 total, 28 usable; 3 with permanent surface runways; none with runways over 3,659 m; 1 with runways 2,440-3,659 m; 2 with runways 1,220-2,439 m

Airports with paved runways

Airports with unpaved runways

Heliports

Pipelines

Railways

Roadways

Waterways

Merchant marine

Ports and terminals


Lesotho - Transnational issues 1991
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Disputes international

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs


Volotea Air


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