Basic information about the territory
- System of governance and political tendencies in the country
- Foreign policy of the country
The system of governance and political tendencies in the country
Liberia is the only West African country that has never been colonized before. Liberia’s politics take place within a presidential representative democratic republic modeled after the United States, in which the president is both head of state and head of government; however, unlike the United States, Liberia is a unitary state as opposed to a federation and has a pluriform multi-party system rather than a the two-party system that characterizes US politics. The Liberian Cabinet, along with the President and Vice President, forms the executive arm of the country’s government. The President, with the consent of the Senate, appoints cabinet ministers. Legislative power is vested in both the government and both chambers of the legislature. The Legislature of Liberia is the bicameral legislature of the Government of Liberia. It consists of the Senate – the upper house and the House of Representatives – the lower house, modeled after the United States Congress. Sessions are held at the Capitol building in Monrovia. Liberia is considered one of the three branches of government under Article III of the Liberian Constitution, which states that all three branches should be co-equal and coordinated based on the principle of checks and balances. The House of Representatives has 73 seats, with each region allocated a certain number of seats based on population. The Senate has 30 deputies and two senators who won the first and second positions, and operates in each region elected by popular vote. Both the House and Senate seats are filled through direct election, where the candidates who receive the majority of votes win their contested seats. Members of the Chamber of Deputies are in office for six years and senators for nine years, while incumbent MPs may seek re-election. In individual regions, there is a Supreme Court, criminal courts and courts of appeal and conciliation. There are also traditional and lay courts in the districts. Exam after exam is practiced in different parts of Liberia. For administrative purposes, Liberia is divided into 15 regions. Each district is headed by a superintendent appointed by the president. Major political parties and organizations include Unity, the Congress for Democratic Change, the Alliance for Peace and Democracy, the United People’s Party, the National Patriotic Party, and the Freedom Party. Under the 1986 Constitution, the president and vice president hold executive functions, and legislative power is vested in Congress and the House of Representatives. Both chambers were elected for 6-year terms, although this was shortened to 4 years before the 1997 elections. The new legislation supported the 1986 constitution. Check cancermatters to learn more about Liberia political system.
Foreign policy of the country
Liberia maintains close relations with the US, which provides the country with technical, financial and military support. Other important donors include China, France and the Arab states. Liberia tries to maintain good relations with international partners, especially with multilateral donors, as it depends on their support. As one of the least developed countries in the world (as defined by the UN), Liberia benefits from overall duty-free and quota-free access to the EU market. This applies to all exports with the exception of arms within the EU’s system of preferential access, “Everything But Arms”. Liberia trades with the EU under the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), which applies to all ECOWAS states. Liberia signed agreements with the EU to combat illegal timber exports and, in 2015, an agreement on illegal fishing. Check prozipcodes for Liberia defense and foreign policy.
The population of Liberia as of April 2021 is 5.157 million
Average annual population growth was 2.44%
Population structure by age groups: 0-14 years: 43.72% 15-24 years: 19.9% 25-54 years: 30.1% 55-64 years: 3.43% 65 and over years: 2.85%
Structure of ethnicities: There are officially 17 ethnic groups in Liberia • Kpelle 20.3% • Others 20.1% • Bassa 13.4% • Grebo 10% • Gio 8% • Mano 7.9% • Kru 6% • Lorma 5.1% • Gola 5.1% • Kissi 4.8%
Structure of religious groups • Christianity 85.6% • Islam (12.2% • None 1.4% • Traditional 0.6% • Other 0.2%