Congo, Democratic Republic of The - Poverty and wealth

Independence from Belgium, gained with little trouble in 1960, has had the unintended effect of increasing the gap between rich and poor in the Congo. The Congo lacks a middle class. The wealthy Congolese—usually tied to those in power by patronage—live in the city in

Exchange rates: Democratic Republic of the Congo
Congolese francs per US$1
Jan 2001 50
2000 4.5
1999 4.02
1998 1.61
1997 1.31
1996 0.50
Note: On June 30, 1998 the Congolese franc was introduced, replacing the new zaire.
SOURCE : CIA World Factbook 2001 [ONLINE].

GDP per Capita (US$)
Country 1975 1980 1985 1990 1998
Dem. Rep. of Congo 392 313 293 247 127
United States 19,364 21,529 23,200 25,363 29,683
Nigeria 301 314 230 258 256
Sudan 237 229 210 198 296
SOURCE : United Nations. Human Development Report 2000; Trends in human development and per capita income.

modern houses and apartment buildings and drive expensive cars. The urban poor, who make up the majority of the population, live in overcrowded slums lacking even the basics of life, such as running water and basic health care. Congolese who live in the rural parts of the country live in thatched huts and survive on subsistence agriculture. Though any estimates of income are questionable, it is estimated the per capita GDP is as low as US$100.

Since independence, the Congo has made efforts to provide its citizens with access to primary and secondary schooling. About 80 percent of the males and 65 percent of females aged 6 to 11 were enrolled in a mixture of state-and church-run primary schools in 1996. At higher levels of education, males greatly outnumber females. The country's elite continue to send their children abroad to be educated, primarily in Western Europe.

Taxes are very burdensome for Congolese, and rural dwellers are subjected to a variety of coercive measures by officials to extract payments, fines, and other financial penalties. The health care system, roads, and school system have virtually collapsed, and the government has focused its meager resources in the urban areas, leaving rural citizens with nothing but high taxes, low prices for their agricultural products, and much suffering.

User Contributions:

Report this comment as inappropriate
Oct 19, 2010 @ 3:15 pm
I think that The prime minster is being unfair towards our country!
He and he's soliders are itmidating us!
Rapeing women why, what is so good about it?
However they need to think about what they are doing to their own country,and to think about what there country is going through!
To be honest I dont know why Joseph Kabila Is the Prime Minister he aint Congolese.As he came
to Congo he made some changes that he knew that the public wouldn't like!
Years will come and Consequences shall be given!
We will keep on fighting till the end, we will not stop until this is horror is over!
Therefore If you think we will stop fitghting for our rights think again!

With Love Matone-Kimbangu-Kongo
kabisayi kayembe
Report this comment as inappropriate
Aug 20, 2014 @ 11:11 am
We congolese got a lot to do build our nation and bring back it pride, if our goverment can just put a bit of effort, congo will an havean on earth, with all our wealth it aesy to attract investers to come in our country and created more companies and our people will be employed, so we can created middle class in DRC.

Comment about this article, ask questions, or add new information about this topic:

CAPTCHA


Congo, Democratic Republic of The forum