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Geography—note: the Kenyan Highlands comprise one of the most successful agricultural production regions in Africa; glaciers on Mt. Kenya; unique physiography supports abundant and varied wildlife of scientific and economic value

total: 582,650 sq km
land: 569,250 sq km
water: 13,400 sq km

Area—comparative: slightly more than twice the size of Nevada

Coastline: 536 km

Climate: varies from tropical along coast to arid in interior

Terrain: low plains rise to central highlands bisected by Great Rift Valley; fertile plateau in west

Natural resources: gold, limestone, soda ash, salt barytes, rubies, fluorspar, garnets, wildlife

Environment—current issues: water pollution from urban and industrial wastes; degradation of water quality from increased use of pesticides and fertilizers; deforestation; soil erosion; desertification; poaching

Population: 28,337,071 (July 1998 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 44% (male 6,248,260; female 6,109,443)
15-64 years: 54% (male 7,609,631; female 7,607,810)
65 years and over: 2% (male 333,881; female 428,046) (July 1998 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.71% (1998 est.)

Birth rate: 31.68 births/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Death rate: 14.19 deaths/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 59.38 deaths/1,000 live births (1998 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 47.57 years
male: 47.02 years
female: 48.13 years (1998 est.)

Total fertility rate: 4.07 children born/woman (1998 est.)

Ethnic groups: Kikuyu 22%, Luhya 14%, Luo 13%, Kalenjin 12%, Kamba 11%, Kisii 6%, Meru 6%, other African 15%, non-African (Asian, European, and Arab) 1%

Religions: Protestant (including Anglican) 38%, Roman Catholic 28%, indigenous beliefs 26%, Muslim 6%, other 2%

Languages: English (official), Swahili (official), numerous indigenous languages

definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 78.1%
male: 86.3%
female: 70% (1995 est.)

National capital: Nairobi

Independence: 12 December 1963 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day, 12 December (1963)

Constitution: 12 December 1963, amended as a republic 1964; reissued with amendments 1979, 1983, 1986, 1988, 1991, 1992, and 1997

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Political parties and leaders:
ruling party: Kenya African National Union or KANU [President Daniel Toroitich arap MOI]
opposition party: Democratic Party of Kenya or DP [Mwai KIBAKI]; Forum for the Restoration of Democracy-Asili or FORD-Asili [Martin SHIKUKU, chairman]; Forum for the Restoration of Democracy-Kenya or FORD-Kenya [Michael Kijana WAMALWA]; Forum for the Restoration of Democracy-People or FORD-People [Kimani wa NYOIKE]; Forum for the Restoration of Democracy-Saba Saba or Asili Saba Saba [Kenneth MATIBA, chairman]; National Development Party or NDP [Raila ODINGA, president and Dr. Charles MARANGA, secretary-general]; Social Democratic Party or SDP [Charity NGILU]; SAFINA [Mutari KIGANO, chairman and Dr. Richard LEAKEY, secretary-general]

Economy—overview: Since 1993, the government of Kenya has implemented a program of economic liberalization and reform. Steps have included the removal of import licensing and price controls, removal of foreign exchange controls, fiscal and monetary restraint, and reduction of the public sector through privatizing publicly owned companies and downsizing the civil service. With the support of the World Bank, IMF, and other donors, these reforms have led to a turnaround in economic performance following a period of negative growth in the early 1990s. Kenya's real GDP grew at 5% in 1995 and 4% in 1996, and inflation remained under control. Growth slowed in 1997. Political violence damaged the tourist industry, and the IMF allowed Kenya's Enhanced Structural Adjustment Program to lapse due to the government's failure to enact reform conditions and to adequately address public sector corruption. Moreover, El Nino rains destroyed crops and damaged an already crumbling infrastructure in 1997 and on into 1998. Long-term barriers to development include electricity shortages, the government's continued and inefficient dominance of key sectors, endemic corruption, and the country's high population growth rate.

GDP—real growth rate: 2.9% (1997 est.)

GDP—composition by sector:
agriculture: 27%
industry: 20%
services: 53% (1995)

Agriculture—products: coffee, tea, corn, wheat, sugarcane, fruit, vegetables; dairy products, beef, pork, poultry, eggs

total value: $2.1 billion (f.o.b., 1996)
commodities: tea 18%, coffee 15%, petroleum products (1995)
partners: Uganda 22.8%, UK 20.1%, Tanzania 19.1%, Germany 14.0%, Netherlands 7.6%, US 6.1%

total value: $2.9 billion (f.o.b., 1996)
commodities: machinery and transportation equipment 31%, consumer goods 13%, petroleum products 12% (1995)
partners: UK 21.3%, UAE 18%, Japan 14%, Germany, US

Debt—external: $7 billion (1994 est.)

Currency: 1 Kenyan shilling (KSh) = 100 cents

Military manpower—availability:
males age 15-49: 6,870,889 (1998 est.)

Military manpower—fit for military service:
males: 4,257,985 (1998 est.)

Military expenditures—dollar figure: $134 million (FY94/95)

Military expenditures—percent of GDP: 3.9% (FY94/95

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