Republic of Zambia
CAPITAL : Lusaka
FLAG : The flag is green, with a tricolor of dark red, black, and orange vertical stripes at the lower corner of the fly, topped by a golden flying eagle.
ANTHEM : Stand and Sing for Zambia.
MONETARY UNIT : The kwacha ( K ) of 100 ngwee replaced the Zambian pound ( Z £) on 15 January 1968. There are coins of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 ngwee, and notes of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, and 500 kwacha. K 1 = $0.000209 (or $1 = K 4,790) as of May 2003.
WEIGHTS AND MEASURES : The metric system is used.
HOLIDAYS : New Year's Day, 1 January; Youth Day, 11 March; Labor Day, 1 May; African Freedom Day, 24 May; Heroes' Day, 1st Monday after 1st weekend in July; Unity Day, Tuesday after Heroes' Day; Farmers' Day, 5 August; Independence Day, 24 October; Christmas, 25 December. Movable religious holidays include Good Friday and Easter Monday.
TIME : 2 PM = noon GMT.
Some 80 different languages have been identified, most of them of the Bantu family. For educational and administrative purposes, seven main languages are recognized: Bemba, Lozi, Lunda, Kaonda, Luvale, Tonga, and Nyanja. Bemba, with its various dialects, is widely spoken in northern Zambia and is the lingua franca in the Copperbelt. The Ila and Tonga tongues predominate in the Southern Province. English is the official language.
As of 2002, the strength of the armed forces was 21,600; paramilitary forces, consisting of two police battalions, totaled 1,400. The army numbered 20,000 equipped with 30 main battle tanks and 30 light tanks. The air force had 1,600 personnel operating 63 combat aircraft. Zambia provided support to peacekeeping missions in three African regions. Defense spending was $32.5 million in 2001, or 0.9% of GDP.
The estimated livestock population in 2001 included 2,600,000 head of cattle, 1,270,000 goats, 340,000 hogs, and 150,000 sheep. Cattle production in certain regions is limited by sleeping sickness, carried by the tsetse fly. During 2001, beef production was 40,800 tons; poultry, 36,500 tons. Meat production in 2001 was estimated at 127,000 tons.
Because Zambia's inland waters are a valuable source of food and employment, the fishing industry plays an important part in the rural economy. Large quantities of fish, most of which are transported by rail to processing centers, are frozen or dried. Major quantities are obtained from Bangweulu, Tanganyika, and Mweru lakes, and from the Kafue and Luapula rivers. The catch in 2000 was 66,671 tons.
About 42% of Zambia is covered by forest; commercial exploitation is concentrated in the southwest and in the Copperbelt. Roundwood production was about 8,053,000 cu m (284 million cu ft) in 2000, 90% of it for fuel needs.
On 1 January 1972, the Zambia State Insurance Corp. (ZSIC) took over all insurance transactions in Zambia. The operations of ZSIC cover fire, marine, aviation, accident, motor vehicle, and life insurance. All imports must be insured with this agency.
Kenneth David Kaunda (b.1924) was Zambia's president from independence in 1964 until 1991. Frederick J.T. Chiluba (b.1943) ousted Kaunda in 1991 in Zambia's first free elections and was reelected in 1996. Nalumino Mundia (1927–88), long prominent in Zambian political affairs, was prime minister 1981–85, when he became ambassador to the US.
Zambia has no territories or colonies.
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