The Republic of Mozambique is situated in the south eastern part of Africa and covers an area of 799 380 square kilometres. The country was a Portuguese colony from the fifteenth century until it attained political independence in 1975 after 10 years of a bitter armed struggle. Peace was interrupted once again during the early 1980s when the country experienced a civil war which caused the loss of many lives and left in its wake a trail of destruction. As a result, a lot of infrastructure had to be rebuilt. Peace finally returned to Mozambique in 1992 and since then, the country has undergone rapid socio-economic development.
The country is divided into 11 provinces namely Cabo Delgado, Niassa, Nampula, Tete, Zambézia, Manica, Sofala, Inhambane, Gaza, Maputo Province and Maputo City.
The capital, Maputo City, comprises about 6.1 percent of the total population of Mozambique. According to the 1997 census 52.1 percent of the population were female. The population density was about 20.1 inhabitants per square kilometre. The gross illiteracy rate was 46.9 percent, and the overall illiteracy rate among the female population was 60.7 percent.
|20 971 446 (2006)|
Annual population growth:
*latest data as of March 2009 from UNESCO Institute for Statistics.