According to ABBREVIATIONFINDER, the Republic of Namibia is a country in South West Africa. It is almost two and a half times the size of Germany. The Namib Desert stretches along the Atlantic coast. It is limited in the east by the large edge step that rises to the central highlands in 1000 to 2000 m. In the east, the highlands form the Kalahari, the basin landscape with no drainage.
The marginal tropical climate is determined by severe drought. Daily and annual temperatures are subject to extreme fluctuations. Only the northeast receives sufficient rainfall. In the east and in the center, thorny savannas determine the landscape, in the north and northeast dry savannas. Deserts and semi-deserts can be found in the extreme south and on the coast.
The Bantu peoples make up the largest proportion of the population. The Hottentots are considered the country’s indigenous people. Namibia is very sparsely populated.
The economy is largely dependent on the Republic of South Africa. The main industry is mining. Diamonds, gold, copper, uranium, lead and silver are mined.
More than 30% of the working population live from agriculture. The industry is still underdeveloped. Ore smelting, fish and meat processing, metal and textile industries are important branches.
Namibia was a German colony until 1915. After the end of World War I, it came under South African rule. The state has been independent since 1990.
Namibia borders Angola in the north and Zambia in the northeast, into which it extends far with the Caprivi Strip. The neighboring countries are Botswana in the east and the Republic of South Africa in the south-east and south. The west of the country is bordered by the Atlantic (Fig. 1). The former 1124 km² South African enclave Walfischbai has been part of Namibia since 1994. The capital is Windhoek.
Important data about the country
|824 292 km²
|2 residents / km²
|Growth of population:
|1.4% / year
|Form of government:
|English, Afrikaans, languages of the Bantu and other groups, German
|Protestants (62%), Catholics (20%), followers of natural religions
|dry, marginal tropical climate
|Arable land 0.8%, forest 12.7%, pasture land 64.3%
(share of employees)
|Agriculture 11%, industry 26%, services 63%
|Diamonds, agricultural and fishery products
|Gross domestic product:
|$ 4,271 million (2003)
|Gross National Product:
|US $ 1,930 / residents (2003)
The country is divided into four large areas from west to east.
The Namib desert stretches along the Atlantic coast. It extends to the sea and is between 80 and 130 km wide. Sand, gravel and rubble cover the surface. In the middle part there are dunes. To the east the desert is bounded by the large edge step. It forms the steep transition to the central highlands. The edge of the threshold includes Namibia’s highest peak, the Brandberg at 2579 m. The central highlands reach an altitude between 1000 and 2000 m. They are towered over by mountainous lands. The highlands think in the east of the drainless basin landscape of the Kalahari with the
Etosha pan off. The latter is the largest of the salt pans and depressions that only carry water during the rainy season.
ll rivers in Namibia that carry water all year round are border rivers. In the extreme northeast, the so-called. Caprivi tip, the Zambezi accompanies the border with Zambia in parts. The southern border with South Africa runs along the Orange River. In the interior of Namibia there are only river beds that carry water after heavy rainfall.
Climate and vegetation
Namibia’s climate is tropical and dry. Large daily and seasonal temperature fluctuations are characteristic. The winters are warm, the summers extremely hot, and there is little rainfall. Only the extreme northeast receives sufficient rainfall of 600 mm per year. In the Namib, only 50 mm of precipitation is measured. Rain almost never falls. The values result from the fog coming from the Atlantic. There are up to 200 foggy days a year.
The predominant vegetation forms in the central, eastern and northeastern regions is the thorn bush savannah. The north and northeast is dominated by dry savannah. In the extreme south and on the coast there are deserts and semi-deserts. The country’s fauna and flora are protected in several national parks. One of the richest wildlife sanctuaries in Africa is the Etosha National Park.
Namibia’s economy is still largely dependent on the Republic of South Africa. With it there is a customs and currency union. The rich natural resources and mining are Namibia’s most important economic factors. The country is one of the largest producers of diamonds and uranium in the world. There are also rich deposits of silver, lead, copper, tin and tungsten.
From agriculture live about 30% of the population. Only about 1% of the country’s area can be used for arable farming. Wheat, corn, sunflowers, millet and vegetables are grown for self-sufficiency. The most important area is livestock farming with cattle, sheep and goat breeding. Fishing has long been of great importance. The effects of decades of overfishing have had a negative impact since the 1970’s. In the meantime, the catch quotas have been reduced so that the fish stocks can recover.
The industry is still underdeveloped. The most important branches are ore smelting, fish and meat processing, metal, textile and leather industries as well as salt extraction.
The main exports are diamonds, uranium, copper, lead, cattle and karaku skins as well as fish and fish products. The most important trading partners are the Republic of South Africa, Great Britain, Germany and the USA. The capital Windhoek has an international airport.
Archaeological finds show that Namibia has been inhabited for 25,000 years. Bushmen have lived in this area for at least 11,000 years. They made rock paintings, the oldest works of art in southern Africa.
The Portuguese landed on the coast for the first time at the end of the 15th century.
Herero immigrated from the north in the 17th and 18th centuries. There were arguments.
In 1883 the German merchant LÜDERITZ acquired the coastal strip between the mouth of the Oranjes and the 22nd degree south latitude. In 1884 it became a protected area for German Southeast Africa.
German colonial rule over Namibia began. In 1893, large numbers of white settlers first settled near Windhoek. The black peoples rebelled against the colonial rulers. The uprisings were severely punished.
Around 1900 rich diamond deposits were discovered and the colony experienced an economic boom.
In the First World War, the Germans were subject to the British South African Army. Namibia fell under the influence of South Africa in 1915, as the part of which it was treated.
Namibia’s struggle for freedom against the South African regime lasted until its independence in 1990. Namibia is one of the youngest independent states in Africa. Unlike in the other South African countries, there were no major conflicts between the black and white population after independence.