Botswana Basic Information

By | July 21, 2022
Basic data
Capital Gaborone
Population 2.43 million
Language English (official language), Setswana (highly spoken)
Religion Christianity (57%), traditional religion (30%), no religion (11%), other religion (2%)
State system presidential republic
Head of State Mokgweetsi Masisi
Head of government Mokgweetsi Masisi
Currency name Botswana Pula (BWP)

Botswana Basic Information

Travel
Time shift +1 hour (in summer +0 hours)
Economy 2021
Nominal GDP (billion USD) 40.7
Economic growth (%) 8.5
Inflation (%) 6,7
Unemployment (%) ON

So a basic summary for a general idea of ​​the country: who has executive power and a brief description of the state establishment, legislation (briefly), the economy and opportunities for Czech companies, or problems when entering the market, if any. If the specific business culture can be described in a maximum of two sentences. Add a view into the future.

Botswana is a functioning democratic and legal state with an independent judiciary, among the most stable and best-performing countries in sub-Saharan Africa. The state establishment is a parliamentary democratic republic of the presidential type. The dominant political force is the Botswana Democratic Party, which has ruled the country continuously since independence. Botswana enjoys friendly relations with all its neighbours, with whom it shares membership in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the Southern African Customs Union (SACU). Despite growing Chinese influence, Botswana also develops traditionally fair relations with the European Union and the United States. Bechuana gained independence as a former British protectorate in 1966. Botswana continues to have a significant economic dependence on the extraction of mineral wealth, which, due to the need to extract minerals at an ever-increasing depth, becomes considerably more expensive. During his election campaign (in 2019), President Masisi declared the transformation of the Botswana economy towards greater representation of the manufacturing sector (especially the automotive industry) as the main goal of the government. However, investment in industrial production is not effectively attracted to the country. The cause is a number of negative factors, including a small internal market and insufficient level of integration within the region, an unskilled workforce, power outages, drought, infrastructure, etc. In the evaluation of the competitiveness of the business environment, Botswana regularly ranks at the top of the entire African continent. According to Transparency International, Botswana is one of the least corrupt countries in Africa. The country faces a high level of social inequality, with approximately 16% of the population living below the poverty line in Botswana. According to the last published data, the unemployment rate was 26%, with more than 40% of the population under the age of 35 without a job. More than a fifth of the adult population remains affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic. The country faces a long-term shortage of water and rainfall, which affects agricultural production. In addition to diamonds, Botswana is a major producer of beef. Persistent problems in securing water and electricity supplies have a negative effect on the performance of the economy and foreign investment. Currently, practically only two coal-fired power plants and one MW solar power plant participate in the production of 500 MW, the rest of the electricity is imported from neighboring countries, mainly from South Africa, and the government’s commitment to achieving energy self-sufficiency in the coming years is therefore unrealistic, according to experts. Operational and economic dependence on South Africa is also significant. The government faces the difficult task of transforming the economy and breaking away from dependence on mineral extraction. This need will become more and more urgent over time and with dwindling diamond supplies.

This Summary Territorial Information is processed for a country that is so-called accredited. The information is provided in an abbreviated form.

Basic information about the territory

Subchapters:

  • System of governance and political tendencies in the country
  • Foreign policy of the country
  • Population

The system of governance and political tendencies in the country

The official name of the country is the Republic of Botswana. The state establishment is a parliamentary democratic republic of the presidential type. The president, elected indirectly by the National Assembly, is at the same time the prime minister and a member of parliament. Laws are approved by the National Assembly, which consists of 65 deputies. The parliamentary majority is made up of MPs from the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP). Botswana also has a fifteen-member House of Chiefs based on ethnic representation, whose role is primarily advisory. After winning the elections in October 2019, the head of state is President Mokgweetsi Masisi, who should lead the country until the end of his five-year term. Masisi is also the chairman of the BDP party, which has been in power continuously since independence in 1966. The largest opposition party is the Umbrella for Democratic Change, which has 15 seats in the 65-member parliament. The newly formed opposition party, the Botswana Patriotic Front (BPF), which split from the BDP in 2019, is led by former president Ian Khama, whose former administration faces allegations of corruption by the current leadership. Based on the result of the last general election (in 2019), it does not seem likely that the BPF party could threaten the power hegemony of the traditional BDP in the near future. Check cancermatters to learn more about Botswana political system.

Foreign policy of the country

Botswana is one of the most Western-oriented countries in sub-Saharan Africa. It takes a constructive approach on the ground of international organizations and often votes together with the member states of the European Union, including issues of the International Court of Justice (ICC) or the support of human rights. The country is a signatory to a number of international and regional trade groups and agreements (World Trade Organization (WTO), South African Customs Union (SACU), South African Development Community (SADC), free trade agreement with the European Union, etc.). Botswana maintains friendly relations with neighboring countries and most African states. Botswana also has good diplomatic relations with most Arab and Asian countries. China is also striving for friendly relations with Botswana, which is involved in a number of projects in the field of infrastructure and energy. Check prozipcodes for Botswana defense and foreign policy.

Population

With an area of ​​581,730 km², which is more than seven times the area of ​​the Czech Republic, approximately million people live in Botswana. The population density thus amounts to only 4 persons per km². The birth rate per woman is children, the annual population increase is at the level of 2.2%. The average life expectancy is 69.3 years (2018, World Bank).

80% of the population is of Tswana nationality, the rest is made up of Bantu ethnic groups (including Kalanga, Yeyi, Ndebele, Herero), Bushmen (Basarwa), as well as Caucasians, Asians and Indians.

More than half of the population is Christian (mainly Catholic). Approximately 30% of the population practice traditional animistic religions, around 11% are non-believers, and the rest belong to other religions, including Islam.