Comoros Basic Information

By | July 21, 2022
Basic data
Capital Morons
Population 0.87 million
Language Arabic, French
Religion Islam
State system Federative presidential republic
Head of State Azali Assoumani
Head of government ON
Currency name Comoros Franc (KMF)

Comoros Basic Information

Travel
Time shift +2 hours (in summer +1 hour)
Economy 2021
Nominal GDP (billion USD) 2.9
Economic growth (%) 2.1
Inflation (%) 1.2
Unemployment (%) ON

Executive power is held by the president, who as head of state is elected in direct elections (the last one was held in 2019). Each of the Comorian islands (Grande Comore, Anjouan and Mohéli) has its own parliament, whose members are directly elected. The Union of Comoros has a unicameral parliament in which 33 legislators sit. Of these, 24 are directly elected and another 9 are appointed as representatives of each of the three islands. The last parliamentary elections resulted in a clear victory for the presidential party Convention pour le renouveau des Comores (CRC). The next elections should be held in 2024 (presidential) and 2025 (parliamentary).

Comoros is one of the poorest countries in the world. Their young and growing population lacks adequate education; the country is characterized by subsistence, high unemployment and significant dependence on foreign aid. The share of the population living below the poverty level is a high 45%. Exports are based on three main agricultural commodities (vanilla, ylang-ylang, cloves) and the country is not self-sufficient in the staple food – rice – which thus represents the main item of import. Vouchers from the diaspora living abroad (200,000 Comorians) make up a full quarter of the country’s GDP. The source of economic growth is agriculture; then retail, construction, tourism, banking and other services.

Chambers, with their specific position, cannot be described as a perspective market for Czech exporters. Possible participation in projects financed by international donors. The vulnerability of the Comorian economy does not favor the development of the private sector, which has to face challenges such as high transport prices, poor accessibility, low connectivity or a lack of territorial planning.

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

Official name of the country: Union of the Comoros

President: Azali Assoumani

Political tendencies: At the beginning of 2020, parliamentary elections were held in the Chambers, in which the party of the current head of state, Colonel Azali Assoumani, won overwhelmingly. Any political opposition to the regime remains latent, the manifestation of political opinions in the Chamber of Deputies is met with a vigorous response by the armed forces and arrests. Azali Assoumani was the president of the Comoros from 1999 to 2006, when he came to power in a military coup (which is the norm in the Comoros – there have been more than twenty coups or attempted coups since independence in 1975). He is again in the presidency since 2016. Importantly, he comes from the largest island of the Grande Comore union. The 2001 constitutional system in the Comoros originally allowed presidents one five-year mandate and guaranteed a regular rotation of the post for a figure from one of the union’s three main islands – Grande Comore, Anjouan and Mohéli. President Azali would have to make way for a presidential candidate from the island of Anjouan in 2021. He therefore initiated a change to the constitution, which gives presidents the opportunity to run for a second mandate, and he had this news confirmed in a nationwide referendum, in which 92.7% of voters voted in favor of changing the constitution (the opposition from the less populated islands of Anjouan and Mohéli called for a boycott of the referendum ). At the same time, the new constitution designated Sunni Islam as the state religion. The eruption of violence on the island of Anjouan, where the next president was supposed to emerge, was quickly resolved by the army from neighboring Grande Comore. In the subsequent presidential elections, Azali Assoumani won in the first round with 59.1%. African Union observers said “the credibility of the election was not ensured” and the opposition understandably did not recognize the election result. All 12 unsuccessful candidates established the “National Transition Council” platform, which demanded a repeat election. However, its leader Soilihi Mohamed was soon arrested and the Constitutional Court later confirmed the victory of President Azali. The opposition resigned from any further challenge to the election result. In January, respectively In February 2020, the president’s Convention pour le renouveau des Comores party won 20 out of 24 seats in the National Assembly. Two seats were won by the Orange Party loyal to President Azali, and two independents still sit in parliament. The two main opposition parties Parti Juwa (PJ) and Union pour le Développement des Comores (UPDC) decided to boycott the elections. Apathy and resignation are deepening in the ranks of the opposition, at least until Azali is president. Check cancermatters to learn more about Comoros political system.

System of governance: Ministry of Economy, Investment and Economic Integration: Mze Abdou Mohamed Chanfiou

Ministry of Finance, Budget and Banking Sector: Kamalidini Souef

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation: Dhoihir Dhoulkamal

Ministry of Health, Solidarity, Social Protection and Gender: Loub Yacout Zaidou

Ministry of the Interior, Information and Decentralization: Mohamed Fakridine

Ministry of Justice, Islamic Affairs, Public Administration and Human Rights: Mohamed Housseini Djamalilail

Ministry of Shipping and Air Transport: Ahmed Ali Bazi

Ministry of National Education, Higher Education and Scientific Research: Djaffar Salim

Ministry of Postal Services, Telecommunications and ICT: Ahmed Ben Saïd Jaffar

Ministry of Youth, Employment, Sports, Arts and Culture: Nourdine Ben Ahmed

Foreign policy of the country

Chambers have long been oriented towards the countries of the Persian Gulf, especially Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates. It was the Emirates that in 2021 invested massively in the electricity distribution network on the islands and provided 600,000 vaccination doses against the Sinopharm coronavirus. In 2019, through the Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahyan Foundation, they were the first to send US$150 million in humanitarian aid following the devastating Cyclone Kenneth, and donated US$185 million for island development at the CPAD donor conference in Paris. Alongside the UAE, it was China and India that provided the islands with essential medical equipment in response to the global coronavirus pandemic. Check prozipcodes for Comoros defense and foreign policy.

France remains a key partner and the largest provider of development cooperation. At the same time, France guarantees the stability of the Comorian franc. The problematic issue is the nearby French department of Mayotte, which is claimed by the Comoros. Mayotte has long been one of the regions most affected by the migration crisis. Every year, over 20,000 people are deported back to the Comoros from the island with approximately 200,000 inhabitants. As many as 48% of Mayotte’s population are foreigners, half of whom are currently on the island illegally. Paris has decided to motivate the Comoros with the amount of 150 million euros in exchange for a tough crackdown on smugglers, owners of illegal docks and producers of small kwassa kwassa boats that transport migrants to Mayotte under the cover of darkness.

Population

Population: 869,595 (UN, 2020)

Average annual growth rate: 1.64% (2017)

Demographic composition: 49.6% women, 50.4% men

Average age: 19.9 years

Average life expectancy: 6years

National composition: Comoros (97% – Antalote, Cafre, Oimtsaha, Sakalava), Maku (2%)

Religious composition: Islam (98%) Christianity (2%)