República da Guiné-Bissau
Republic of Guinea-Bissau

Flag of Guinea-Bissau Coat of Arms of Guinea-Bissau
Unidade, Luta, Progresso
Unity, Struggle, Progress
Esta é a Nossa Pátria Bem Amada
This is Our Well-Beloved Motherland
Map of Guinea-Bissau
Government Semi-presidential republic
- From 2009Malam Bacai Sanhá
Prime Minister
- From 2009Carlos Gomes
Legislature People's National Assembly
September 24, 1973Established as State of Guinea-Bissau
September 10, 1974Indpendence Recognized
March 13, 1977Republic of Guinea-Bissau
Area36,125 km²
- 20101,647,000
GDP2010 (PPP)
- TotalUS$ 1.7 billion
- Per capitaUS$ 1,084
CurrencyWest African CFA franc
Flag of None Portuguese Guinea

The Republic of Guinea-Bissau is a semi-presidential republic in Western Africa.


Since independence from Portugal in 1974, Guinea-Bissau has experienced considerable political and military upheaval. In 1980, a military coup established authoritarian dictator Joao Bernardo 'Nino' VIEIRA as president. Despite setting a path to a market economy and multiparty system, VIEIRA's regime was characterized by the suppression of political opposition and the purging of political rivals. Several coup attempts through the 1980s and early 1990s failed to unseat him. In 1994 VIEIRA was elected president in the country's first free elections. A military mutiny and resulting civil war in 1998 eventually led to VIEIRA's ouster in May 1999. In February 2000, a transitional government turned over power to opposition leader Kumba YALA after he was elected president in transparent polling. In September 2003, after only three years in office, YALA was ousted by the military in a bloodless coup, and businessman Henrique ROSA was sworn in as interim president. In 2005, former President VIEIRA was re-elected president pledging to pursue economic development and national reconciliation; he was assassinated in March 2009. Malam Bacai SANHA was elected in an emergency election held in June 2009.[1]


One of the poorest countries in the world, Guinea-Bissau's legal economy depends mainly on farming and fishing, but trafficking narcotics is probably the most lucrative trade. Cashew crops have increased remarkably in recent years. Guinea-Bissau exports fish and seafood along with small amounts of peanuts, palm kernels, and timber. Rice is the major crop and staple food. However, intermittent fighting between Senegalese-backed government troops and a military junta destroyed much of the country's infrastructure and caused widespread damage to the economy in 1998; the civil war led to a 28% drop in GDP that year, with partial recovery in 1999-2002. In December 2003, the World Bank, IMF, and UNDP were forced to step in to provide emergency budgetary support in the amount of $107 million for 2004, representing over 80% of the total national budget. The combination of limited economic prospects, a weak and faction-ridden government, and favorable geography have made this West African country a way station for drugs bound for Europe.[2]


  • Malam Bacai Sanhá () (September 8, 2009 - )

Prime Minister

  • Carlos Gomes () (January 2, 2009 - )


Bissau-Guinean Polities

Neighbouring Nations


  1. The CIA World Factbook: Introduction - Background
  2. The CIA World Factbook: Economy - Overview

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