Statistical information Lesotho 1995Lesotho

Map of Lesotho | Geography | People | Government | Economy | Energy | Communication
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Lesotho - Introduction 1995
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Background: Basutoland was renamed the Kingdom of Lesotho upon independence from the UK in 1966. Constitutional government was restored in 1993 after 23 years of military rule.


Lesotho - Geography 1995
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Location: Southern Africa, an enclave of South Africa

Geographic coordinates

Map referenceAfrica

Area
Total area total: 30,350 km²
Land: 30,350 km²
Comparative: slightly larger than Maryland

Land boundaries: total 909 km, South Africa 909 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none; landlocked

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

Terrain: mostly highland with plateaus, hills, and mountains

Elevation

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

Land use
Arable land: 10%
Permanent crops: 0%
Meadows and pastures: 66%
Forest and woodland: 0%
Other: 24%

Irrigated land: NA km²

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards

Geography
Note: landlocked; surrounded by South Africa


Lesotho - People 1995
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Population: 1,992,960 (July 1995 est.)
Growth rate: 2.44% (1995 est.)

Nationality
Noun: Mosotho (singular), Basotho (plural)
Adjective: Basotho

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

Languages: Sesotho (southern Sotho), English (official), Zulu, Xhosa

Religions: Christian 80%, rest indigenous beliefs

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years: 41% (female 407,213; male 416,709)
15-64 years: 54% (female 558,106; male 520,961)
65 years and over: 5% (female 51,809; male 38,162) (July 1995 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate: 2.44% (1995 est.)

Birth rate: 33.39 births/1000 population (1995 est.)

Death rate: 8.96 deaths/1000 population (1995 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1000 population (1995 est.)

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; Highlands Water Project will control, store, and redirect water to South Africa
Current issues natural hazards: periodic droughts
Current issues international agreements: party to - Biodiversity, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands; signed, but not ratified - Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping

Air pollutants

Sex ratio

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 67.4 deaths/1000 live births (1995 est.)

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 62.56 years
Male: 60.74 years
Female: 64.43 years (1995 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.41 children born/woman (1995 est.)

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: age 15 and over can read and write (1966)
Total population: 59%
Male: 44%
Female: 68%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment


Lesotho - Government 1995
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Country name
Conventional long form: Kingdom of Lesotho
Conventional short form: Lesotho
Former: Basutoland

Government type: constitutional monarchy

Capital: Maseru

Administrative divisions: 10 districts; Berea, Butha-Buthe, Leribe, Mafeteng, Maseru, Mohale's Hoek, Mokhotlong, Qacha's Nek, Quthing, Thaba-Tseka

Dependent areas

Independence: 4 October 1966 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day, 4 October (1966)

Constitution: 2 April 1993

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: 21 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state: King MOSHOESHOE II (since February 1995)
Head of government: Prime Minister Ntsu MOKHEHLE (since 2 April 1993)
Cabinet: Cabinet

Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament consisting of the Assembly or lower house whose members are chosen by popular election and the Senate or upper house whose members consist of the 22 principal chiefs and 11 other members appointed by the ruling party; election last held in March 1993 (first since 1971; all 65 seats in the Assembly were won by the BCP

Judicial branch: High Court, Court of Appeal, Magistrate's Court, customary or traditional court

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: ACP, AfDB, C, CCC, ECA, FAO, G-77, GATT, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, INTELSAT (nonsignatory user), INTERPOL, IOC, ITU, NAM, OAU, SACU, SADC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation
In the us chief of mission: (vacant); Charge d'Affaires ad interim Mokhali A. LITHEBE (since 2 July 1994)
In the us chancery: 2,511 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20,008
In the us telephone: [1] (202) 797-5,533 through 5,536
In the us FAX: [1] (202) 234-6,815
From the us chief of mission: Ambassador Myrick BISMARCK
From the us embassy: address NA, Maseru
From the us mailing address: P. O. Box 333, Maseru 100, Lesotho
From the us telephone: [266] 312,666
From the us FAX: [266] 310,116

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

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage


Lesotho - Economy 1995
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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 (these remittances supplement domestic income by as much as 45%). The great majority of households gain their livelihoods from subsistence farming and migrant labor; a large portion of the adult male work force is employed in South African mines. Manufacturing depends largely on farm products to support the milling, canning, leather, and jute industries; other industries include textile, clothing, and construction. Although drought has decreased agricultural activity over the past few years, improvement of a major hydropower facility will permit the sale of water to South Africa and allow Lesotho's economy to continue its moderate growth.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate: 6% (1994 est.)

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 50% of GDP (1993 est.), exceedingly primitive, mostly subsistence farming and livestock; principal crops corn, wheat, pulses, sorghum, barley

Industries: food, beverages, textiles, handicrafts, tourism

Industrial production growth rate: 10%; accounts for 17% of GDP (1993 est.)

Labor force: 689,000 economically active
By occupation: 86.2% of resident population engaged in subsistence agriculture; roughly 60% of the active male wage earners work in South Africa
Labor force

Unemployment rate: substantial unemployment and underemployment

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Budget
Revenues: $438 million
Expenditures: $430 million, including capital expenditures of $155 million (FY93/94 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: $109 million (f.o.b., 1992)
Commodoties: wool, mohair, wheat, cattle, peas, beans, corn, hides, skins, baskets
Partners: South Africa 42%, EC 28%, North and South America 25% (1991)

Imports: $964 million (c.i.f., 1992)
Commodoties: mainly corn, building materials, clothing, vehicles, machinery, medicines, petroleum
Partners: South Africa 94%, Asia 3%, EC 1% (1991)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $512 million (1993)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: maloti (M) per US$1 - 3.5389 (January 1995), 3.5490 (1994), 3.2636 (1993), 2.8497 (1992), 2.7563 (1991), 2.5863 (1990; note - the Basotho loti is at par with the South African rand


Lesotho - Energy 1995
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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 1995
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system: 5,920 telephones; rudimentary system
Local: NA
Intercity: consists of a few land lines, a small microwave radio relay system, and a minor radio communication system
International: 1 INTELSAT (Atlantic Ocean) earth station

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions


Lesotho - Military 1995
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Military expenditures
Dollar figure: $25 million, NA% of GDP (1994)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups


Lesotho - Transportation 1995
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 29
With paved runways over 3047 m: 1
With paved runways 914 to 1523 m: 1
With paved runways under 914 m: 23
With unpaved runways 914 to 1523 m: 4

Airports with paved runways
Over 3047 m: 1
914 to 1523 m: 1
Under 914 m: 23

Airports with unpaved runways
914 to 1523 m: 4

Heliports

Pipelines

Railways

Roadways

Waterways

Merchant marine

Ports and terminals


Lesotho - Transnational issues 1995
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Disputes international: none

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs


Adrenaline


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