Cameroon Population: 20,549,221


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French Cameroon became independent in 1960 as the Republic of Cameroon. The following year the southern portion of neighboring British Cameroon voted to merge with the new country to form the Federal Republic of Cameroon. In 1972, a new constitution replaced the federation with a unitary state, the United Republic of Cameroon. The country has generally enjoyed stability, which has permitted the development of agriculture, roads, and railways, as well as a petroleum industry. Despite slow movement toward democratic reform, political power remains firmly in the hands of President Paul BIYA.

Sometimes referred to as the hinge of Africa; throughout the country there are areas of thermal springs and indications of current or prior volcanic activity; Mount Cameroon, the highest mountain in Sub-Saharan west Africa, is an active volcano
Location: Central Africa, bordering the Bight of Biafra, between Equatorial Guinea and Nigeria
Geographic coordinates: 6 00 N, 12 00 E
Area: total: 475,440 sq km
land: 472,710 sq km
water: 2,730 sq km

Size comparison: slightly larger than California
Land Boundaries: total: 4,591 km
border countries: Central African Republic 797 km, Chad 1,094 km, Republic of the Congo 523 km, Equatorial Guinea 189 km, Gabon 298 km, Nigeria 1,690 km
Coastline: 402 km
Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
Climate: varies with terrain, from tropical along coast to semiarid and hot in north
Terrain: diverse, with coastal plain in southwest, dissected plateau in center, mountains in west, plains in north
Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Fako 4,095 m (on Mt. Cameroon)
Natural resources: petroleum, bauxite, iron ore, timber, hydropower
Land use: arable land: 13.04%
permanent crops: 2.94%
other: 84.01% (2011)
Irrigated land: 256.5 sq km (2003)
Natural hazards: volcanic activity with periodic releases of poisonous gases from Lake Nyos and Lake Monoun volcanoes volcanism: Mt. Cameroon (elev. 4,095 m), which last erupted in 2000, is the most frequently active volcano in West Africa; lakes in Oku volcanic field have released fatal levels of gas on occasion, killing some 1,700 people in 1986
Current Environment Issues: waterborne diseases are prevalent; deforestation; overgrazing; desertification; poaching; overfishing
International Environment Agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
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Nationality: noun: Cameroonian(s)
adjective: Cameroonian
Ethnic groups: Cameroon Highlanders 31%, Equatorial Bantu 19%, Kirdi 11%, Fulani 10%, Northwestern Bantu 8%, Eastern Nigritic 7%, other African 13%, non-African less than 1%
Languages: 24 major African language groups, English (official), French (official)
Religions: indigenous beliefs 40%, Christian 40%, Muslim 20%
Population: 20,549,221 (July 2013 est.) note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected
Age structure: 0-14 years: 40% (male 4,151,140/female 4,076,797)
15-24 years: 20.3% (male 2,107,067/female 2,066,718)
25-54 years: 31.9% (male 3,317,740/female 3,240,609)
55-64 years: 4.3% (male 419,751/female 468,077)
65 years and over: 3.4% (male 319,597/female 381,725) (2013 est.)
Dependency ratios: total dependency ratio: 85.8 %
youth dependency ratio: 79.8 %
elderly dependency ratio: 6 %
potential support ratio: 16.7 (2013)
Median age: total: 19.7 years
male: 19.6 years
female: 19.8 years (2013 est.)
Population growth rate: 2.04% (2013 est.)
Birth rate: 31.93 births/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Death rate: 11.51 deaths/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Urbanization: urban population: 52.1% of total population (2011)
rate of urbanization: 3.23% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Major urban areas - population: YAOUNDE (capital) 2.432 million; Douala 2.053 million (2011)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.9 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.84 male(s)/female
total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2013 est.)
Mother's mean age at first birth: 19.4 (2004 est.)
Maternal mortality rate: 690 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)
Infant mortality rate: total: 58.51 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 62.92 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 53.96 deaths/1,000 live births (2013 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 55.02 years
male: 54.1 years
female: 55.95 years (2013 est.)
Total fertility rate: 4 children born/woman (2013 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate: 23.4% (2011)
Health expenditures: 5.1% of GDP (2010)
Physicians density: 0.19 physicians/1,000 population (2004)
Hospital bed density: 1.3 beds/1,000 population (2010)
Drinking water source: improved:
urban: 95% of population
rural: 52% of population
total: 77% of population

urban: 5% of population
rural: 48% of population
total: 23% of population (2010 est.)
Sanitation facility access: improved:
urban: 58% of population
rural: 36% of population
total: 49% of population

urban: 42% of population
rural: 64% of population
total: 51% of population (2010 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 5.3% (2009 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 610,000 (2009 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths: 37,000 (2009 est.)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate: 10.3% (2008)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight: 16.6% (2006)
Education expenditures: 3.2% of GDP (2011)
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 71.3%
male: 78.3%
female: 64.8% (2010 est.)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education): total: 12 years
male: 12 years
female: 11 years (2011)
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Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Cameroon
conventional short form: Cameroon
local long form: Republique du Cameroun/Republic of Cameroon
local short form: Cameroun/Cameroon
former: French Cameroon, British Cameroon, Federal Republic of Cameroon, United Republic of Cameroon
Government type: republic; multiparty presidential regime
Capital: name: Yaounde
geographic coordinates: 3 52 N, 11 31 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions: 10 regions (regions, singular - region); Adamaoua, Centre, East (Est), Far North (Extreme-Nord), Littoral, North (Nord), North-West (Nord-Ouest), West (Ouest), South (Sud), South-West (Sud-Ouest)
Independence: 1 January 1960 (from French-administered UN trusteeship)
National holiday: Republic Day (National Day), 20 May (1972)
Constitution: approved by referendum 20 May 1972; adopted 2 June 1972; revised January 1996; amended April 2008
Legal system: mixed legal system of English common law, French civil law, and customary law
Suffrage: 20 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state: President Paul BIYA (since 6 November 1982)

head of government: Prime Minister Philemon YANG (since 30 June 2009)

cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president from proposals submitted by the prime minister (For more information visit the World Leaders website )

elections: president elected by popular vote for a seven-year term (with no term limits per 2008 constitutional amendment); election last held on 9 October 2011 (next to be held in October 2018); prime minister appointed by the president

election results: President Paul BIYA reelected; percent of vote - Paul BIYA 78.0%, John FRU NDI 10.7%, Garga Haman ADJI 3.2%, Adamou Ndam NJOYA 1.7%, Paul Abine AYAH 1.3%, other 5.1%
Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (180 seats; members are elected by direct popular vote to serve five-year terms); note - the president can either lengthen or shorten the term of the legislature

elections: last held on 22 July 2007 (next to be held on 30 September 2013)

election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - CPDM 140, SDF 14, UDC 4, UNDP 4, MP 1, vacant 17 note: the constitution calls for an upper chamber for the legislature, to be called a Senate, but it has yet to be established
Judicial branch: highest court(s): Supreme Court of Cameroon (consists of 9 titular and 6 surrogate judges and organized into judicial, administrative, and audit chambers); Constitutional Council (consists of 11 members) judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court judges appointed by the president with the advice of the Higher Judicial Council of Cameroon (a body chaired by the president and includes the minister of justice, selected magistrates, and representatives of the National Assembly); judge term NA; Constitutional Council members appointed by the president for single 9-year terms

subordinate courts: Parliamentary Court of Justice (jurisdiction limited to cases involving the president and prime minister); appellate and first instance courts; circuit and magistrate's courts
Political parties and leaders: Cameroon People's Democratic Movement or CPDM [Paul BIYA] Cameroon People's Party [Edith Kah WALLA] Cameroonian Democratic Union or UDC [Adamou Ndam NJOYA] Movement for the Defense of the Republic or MDR [Dakole DAISSALA] Movement for the Liberation and Development of Cameroon or MLDC [Marcel YONDO] National Union for Democracy and Progress or UNDP [Maigari BELLO BOUBA] Progressive Movement or MP Social Democratic Front or SDF [John FRU NDI] Union of Peoples of Cameroon or UPC [Augustin Frederic KODOCK]
Political pressure groups and leaders: Human Rights Defense Group [Albert MUKONG, president] Southern Cameroon National Council [Ayamba Ette OTUN]
International organization participation: ACP, AfDB, AU, BDEAC, C, CEMAC, EITI (candidate country), FAO, FZ, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MONUSCO, NAM, OIC, OIF, OPCW, PCA, UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
National symbol(s): lion
National anthem: name: "O Cameroun, Berceau de nos Ancetres" (O Cameroon, Cradle of Our Forefathers)
lyrics/music: Rene Djam AFAME, Samuel Minkio BAMBA, Moise Nyatte NKO'O [French], Benard Nsokika FONLON [English]/Rene Djam AFAME

note: adopted 1957; Cameroon's anthem, also known as "Chant de Ralliement" (The Rallying Song), has been used unofficially since 1948 and officially adopted in 1957; the anthem has French and English versions whose lyrics differ
Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Joseph FOE-ATANGANA
chancery: 2349 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008; current temporary address - 3400 International Drive NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 265-8790
FAX: [1] (202) 387-3826
Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Robert P. JACKSON
embassy: Avenue Rosa Parks, Yaounde
mailing address: P. O. Box 817, Yaounde; pouch: American Embassy, US Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-2520
telephone: [237] 2220 15 00; Consular: [237] 2220 16 03
FAX: [237] 2220 15 00 Ext. 4531; Consular FAX: [237] 2220 17 52 branch office(s): Douala
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Because of its modest oil resources and favorable agricultural conditions, Cameroon has one of the best-endowed primary commodity economies in sub-Saharan Africa. Still, it faces many of the serious problems confronting other underdeveloped countries, such as stagnant per capita income, a relatively inequitable distribution of income, a top-heavy civil service, endemic corruption, and a generally unfavorable climate for business enterprise. Since 1990, the government has embarked on various IMF and World Bank programs designed to spur business investment, increase efficiency in agriculture, improve trade, and recapitalize the nation's banks. The IMF is pressing for more reforms, including increased budget transparency, privatization, and poverty reduction programs. Subsidies for electricity, food, and fuel have strained the budget. Cameroon recently began several large infrastructure projects, including a deep sea port in Kribi, a natural gas powered electricity generating plant, and several hydroelectric dams. Cameroon must attract more investment to improve its inadequate infrastructure, but its business environment is a deterrent to foreign investment.
GDP (purchasing power parity): GDP (purchasing power parity): $51.61 billion (2012 est.) $49.27 billion (2011 est.) $47.33 billion (2010 est.)

note: data are in 2012 US dollars
GDP (official exchange rate): GDP (official exchange rate): $25.01 billion (2012 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: 4.7% (2012 est.) 4.1% (2011 est.) 3.3% (2010 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP): GDP - per capita (PPP): $2,400 (2012 est.) $2,400 (2011 est.) $2,300 (2010 est.)

note: data are in 2012 US dollars
Gross national saving: 20.8% of GDP (2012 est.) 19.8% of GDP (2011 est.) 16.1% of GDP (2010 est.)
GDP - composition, by end use: household consumption: 67.1%
government consumption: 16.2%
investment in fixed capital: 20.9%
investment in inventories: 0%
exports of goods and services: 30.5%
imports of goods and services: -34.6% (2012 est.)
GDP - composition, by sector of origin: household consumption: 67.1%
government consumption: 16.2%
investment in fixed capital: 20.9%
investment in inventories: 0%
exports of goods and services: 30.5%
imports of goods and services: -34.6% (2012 est.)
Agriculture - products: coffee, cocoa, cotton, rubber, bananas, oilseed, grains, cassava (manioc); livestock; timber
Industries: petroleum production and refining, aluminum production, food processing, light consumer goods, textiles, lumber, ship repair
Industrial production growth rate: 5.4% (2012 est.)
Labor force: 8.246 million (2012 est.)
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture: 70%
industry: 13%
services: 17% (2001 est.)
Unemployment rate: 30% (2001 est.)
Population below poverty line: 48% (2000 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2.3%
highest 10%: 35.4% (2001)
Distribution of family income - Gini index: 44.6 (2001) 47.7 (1996)
Budget: revenues: $4.741 billion
expenditures: $5.73 billion (2012 est.)
Taxes and other revenues: 19% of GDP (2012 est.)
Public debt: 16% of GDP (2012 est.) 14.6% of GDP (2011 est.)
Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June
Inflation rate (consumer prices): Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.9% (2012 est.) 2.9% (2011 est.)
Current account balance: -$946.4 million (2012 est.) -$1.365 billion (2011 est.)
Exports: $6.025 billion (2012 est.) $5.488 billion (2011 est.)
Exports - commodities: crude oil and petroleum products, lumber, cocoa beans, aluminum, coffee, cotton
Exports - partners: China 14.8%, Netherlands 9.5%, Spain 8.8%, India 8.4%, Portugal 7.9%, Italy 5.9%, US 5.3% (2012)
Imports: $6.559 billion (2012 est.) $6.06 billion (2011 est.)
Imports - commodities: machinery, electrical equipment, transport equipment, fuel, food
Imports - partners: China 18.9%, France 15%, Nigeria 12.1%, Belgium 5.2%, US 4.4%, India 4.2% (2012)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $3.431 billion (31 December 2012 est.) $3.245 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
Debt - external: $3.208 billion (31 December 2012 est.) $3.074 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares: $230 million (31 December 2012 est.)
Exchange rates: Cooperation Financiere en Afrique Centrale francs (XAF) per dollar - 510.53 (2012 est.) 471.87 (2011 est.) 495.28 (2010 est.) 472.19 (2009) 447.81 (2008)
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Electricity - production: 5.589 billion kWh (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 114
Electricity - consumption: 5.049 billion kWh (2009 est.)
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity: 1.115 million kW (2009 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels: 27.8% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels: 0% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants: 72.2% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources: 0% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Crude oil - production: 61,580 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Crude oil - exports: 64,740 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Crude oil - imports: 32,490 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Crude oil - proved reserves: 200 million bbl (1 January 2012 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production: 42,520 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption: 29,410 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports: 17,470 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports: 5,715 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Natural gas - production: 20 million cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas - consumption: 20 million cu m (2009 est.)
Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves: 135.1 billion cu m (1 January 2012 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy: 7.361 million Mt (2010 est.)
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Telephones in use: 669,000 (2011)
country comparison to the world: 90
Cellular Phones in use: 10.486 million (2011)
Telephone system: general assessment: system includes cable, microwave radio relay, and tropospheric scatter; Camtel, the monopoly provider of fixed-line service, provides connections for only about 3 per 100 persons; equipment is old and outdated, and connections with many parts of the country are unreliable

domestic: mobile-cellular usage, in part a reflection of the poor condition and general inadequacy of the fixed-line network, has increased sharply, reaching a subscribership base of 50 per 100 persons

international: country code - 237; landing point for the SAT-3/WASC fiber-optic submarine cable that provides connectivity to Europe and Asia; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2011)
Broadcast media: government maintains tight control over broadcast media; state-owned Cameroon Radio Television (CRTV), broadcasting on both a TV and radio network, was the only officially recognized and fully licensed broadcaster until August 2007 when the government finally issued licenses to 2 private TV broadcasters and 1 private radio broadcaster; about 70 privately owned, unlicensed radio stations operating but are subject to closure at any time; foreign news services required to partner with state-owned national station (2007)
Internet country code: .cm
Internet hosts: 10,207 (2012)
Internet users: 749,600 (2009)
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Airports: 33 (2013)
country comparison to the world: 112
Airports (paved runways): total 11
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 5
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2013)
Airports (unpaved runways): total 22

1,524 to 2,437 m: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 10
under 914 m: 8 (2013)
Pipelines: gas 53 km; liquid petroleum gas 5 km; oil 1,107 km; water 35 km (2013)
Railways: total 1,245 km

narrow gauge: 1,245 km 1.000-m gauge (2008)
Roadways: total 50,000 km
paved: 5,000 km
unpaved: 45,000 km

note: there are 28,857 km of national roads (2008)
Waterways: (major rivers in the south, such as the Wouri and the Sanaga, are largely non-navigable; in the north, the Benue, which connects through Nigeria to the Niger River, is navigable in the rainy season only to the port of Garoua) (2010)
Ports and terminals:
river port(s): Douala (Wouri); Garoua (Benoue)
oil/gas terminal(s): Limboh Terminal
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Military branches: Cameroon Armed Forces (Forces Armees Camerounaises, FAC), Army (L'Armee de Terre), Navy (Marine Nationale Republique (MNR), includes naval infantry), Air Force (Armee de l'Air du Cameroun, AAC), Fire Fighter Corps, Gendarmerie (2013)
Military service age and obligation: 18-23 years of age for male and female voluntary military service; no conscription; high school graduation required; service obligation 4 years; the government makes periodic calls for volunteers (2012)
Manpower available for military service: males age 16-49: 4,667,251
females age 16-49: 4,548,909 (2010 est.)
Manpower fit for military service: males age 16-49: 2,794,998
females age 16-49: 2,718,110 (2010 est.)
Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually: male: 215,248
female: 211,636 (2010 est.)
Military expenditures: 1.3% of GDP (2009)
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 Transnational Issues
Disputes - International: Joint Border Commission with Nigeria reviewed 2002 ICJ ruling on the entire boundary and bilaterally resolved differences, including June 2006 Greentree Agreement that immediately ceded sovereignty of the Bakassi Peninsula to Cameroon with a full phase-out of Nigerian control and patriation of residents in 2008; Cameroon and Nigeria agreed on maritime delimitation in March 2008; sovereignty dispute between Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon over an island at the mouth of the Ntem River; only Nigeria and Cameroon have heeded the Lake Chad Commission's admonition to ratify the delimitation treaty, which also includes the Chad-Niger and Niger-Nigeria boundaries
Refugees and internally displaced persons: refugees (country of origin): 91,378 (Central African Republic) (2013)
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