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Burundi: green cultivated highlands, lakes and forests

Burundi (République du Burundi/Republika y’Uburundi) is a presidential republic of Central Africa, whose capital is Bujumbura. It used to be a part of German East Africa, became a League of Nations Mandate entrusted to Belgium after the First World War and a United Nations Trust Territory after 1945, administered by Belgium till the granting of independence in 1962. Burundi is a landlocked country and is bordered by Rwanda in the north, Tanzania in the south and east and the Democratic Republic of the Congo in the west.

THE RIFT VALLEY

Burundi is located in the heart of equatorial Africa in the Great Lakes and Rift Valley region. The entire territory of the country consists of a hilly plateau with an average of 1,700 m. The highest mountain is Mount Heha with 2,760 metres, while the lowest point of the country are the shores of Lake Tanganyika with 32,893 sq km on 772 metres above sea level. The lake marks for a long stretch the border with the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The country is crossed by the rivers Ruzizi, Malagarasi and Ruvuvu. The Kagera River, the remote source of the Nile, originates in Burundi. Burundi is one of the most densely populated African countries. Its economy, among the poorest in Africa, is based on agricultural products such as coffee, cotton, tea, cassava, millet, maize, sorghum, sweet potatoes and bananas. Fishing in Lake Tanganyika and the raising of cattle, sheep and goats are important.

The climate of Burundi.

English text correction by Dietrich Köster.

  • Area: 25,949 sq km/27,834 sq km including internal waters): arable land 42,4%, pastures 35,6%, forests and bushland 11,7%, uncultivated and unproductive land 10,3%
  • Population: 11.700.000 (as of 2019): Hutus 85%, Tutsis 14%, Twas (Pygmies) 1%.
  • State Capital: Bujumbura.
  • Official Languages: Official languages are Kirundi and French.
  • Religion: Christians 67%: Roman Catholics 62% and Protestants 5%; indigenous beliefs 23%, Muslims 10%.
  • Currency: Burundi Franc/FBu (BIF)
  • Time Zone: UTC+2 hours.

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