Namibia, officially the Republic of Namibia is a country in southern Africa whose western border is the Atlantic Ocean. It shares land borders with Zambia and Angola to the north, Botswana to the east and South Africa to the south and east. Although it does not border Zimbabwe, a part of fewer than 200 meters of the Zambezi River (essentially a small bulge in Botswana to achieve a Botswana/Zambia micro-border) separates the two countries. Namibia gained independence from South Africa on 21 March 1990, following the Namibian War of Independence. Its capital and largest city is Windhoek, and it is a member state of the United Nations (UN), the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the African Union (AU), and the Commonwealth of Nations.
The Banking System in Namibia comprise of four commercial banks (First National Bank Namibia Limited, Standard Bank Namibia Limited, Ned Bank Namibia Limited and Bank Windhoek Namibia Limited) and one Micro-finance bank (Fides Bank Namibia Limited) whose operations remained relatively small in comparison to that of the other four commercial banks. These banks are the primary mobilizer of funds from the public and the main sources of financing, which support business operations and economic activities in NamibiaThe Banking System in Namibia comprise of four commercial banks (First National Bank Namibia Limited, Standard Bank Namibia Limited, Ned Bank Namibia Limited and Bank Windhoek Namibia Limited) and one Micro-finance bank (Fides Bank Namibia Limited) whose operations remained relatively small in comparison to that of the other four commercial banks. These banks are the primary mobilizer of funds from the public and the main sources of financing, which support business operations and economic activities in Namibia.
|Agriculture||Vegetable-, maize-, grain- and fodder crops, as well as herbicides, insecticides, fungicides.|
|Manufacture||Energy, Machinery, Mining.|
|Services (Including financial)||63.8% (2015 estimate)|
|Bank of Namibia||Banking|
|Namibia Breweries Limited||Consumer goods|
|Bidvest Namibia||Consumer goods|
The Namibian Stock Exchange (NSX) (Afrikaans: Namibiese Effektebeurs; German: Börse Namibia) is the only stock exchange in Namibia. Based in Windhoek, it is one of the largest stock exchanges on the African continent. It has a partnership with JSE in neighbouring South Africa. The NSX is only open on weekdays, and trades continuously from 09:00 to 17:00 (WAT), excluding public holidays.
The stock exchange operates under a license from the Namibian non- banking financial regulator NAMFISA. The stock exchange is regulated by the Stock Exchanges Control Act (1985 and 1992).
The current global financial crisis, undoubtedly the worst financial crisis since the 1930s, has tested the strength and resilience of many economies around the globe. The financial crisis, which began last year as an isolated and sector-specific problem in the US sub-prime residential markets, has now spread into a global financial disaster.
The dry lands of Namibia were inhabited since early times by the San, Damara, and Nama peoples. Since about the 14th century, immigrating Bantu peoples arrived as part of the Bantu expansion. Since then the Bantu groups in total, known as the Ovambo people, have dominated the population of the country and since the late 19th century, have constituted a large majority.
In the late 19th century during European colonization, the German Empire established rule over most of the territory as a protectorate in 1884. It began to develop infrastructure and farming and maintained this German colony until 1915 when South African forces defeated its military. After the end of World War I, in 1920 the League of Nations mandated the country to the United Kingdom, under administration by South Africa. It imposed its laws, including racial classifications and rules. From 1948, with the National Party elected to power, South Africa applied apartheid also to what was known as South West Africa. In 1878 the Cape Colony had annexed the port of Walvis Bay and the offshore Penguin Islands; these became an integral part of the new Union of South Africa at its creation in 1910.
In the later 20th century, uprisings and demands for political representation by native African political activists seeking independence resulted in the UN assuming direct responsibility for the territory in 1966, but South Africa maintained de facto rule. In 1973 the UN recognized the South West Africa People's Organisation (SWAPO) as the official representative of the Namibian people; the party is dominated by the Ovambo, who are a large majority in the territory. Following continued guerrilla warfare, South Africa installed an interim administration in Namibia in 1985. Namibia obtained full independence from South Africa in 1990. But Walvis Bay and the Penguin Islands remained under South African control until 1994.
Namibia has a population of 2.1 million people and a stable multi-party parliamentary democracy. Agriculture, herding, tourism and the mining industry – including mining for gem diamonds, uranium, gold, silver, and base metals – form the basis of its economy. The large, arid Namib Desert has resulted in Namibia is overall one of the least densely populated countries in the world. Namibia enjoys high political, economic and social stability.
The name of the country is derived from the Namib Desert, considered to be the oldest desert in the world. Before its independence in 1990, the area was known first as German South-West Africa (Deutsch-Südwestafrika), then as South-West Africa, reflecting the colonial occupation by the Germans and the South Africans (technically on behalf of the British crown reflecting South Africa's dominion status within the British Empire).
Namibia's economy is tied closely to South Africa's due to their shared history. The largest economic sectors are mining (10.4% of the gross domestic product in 2009), agriculture (5.0%), manufacturing (13.5%), and tourism.
Namibia has a highly developed banking sector with modern infrastructures, such as online banking and cellphone banking. The Bank of Namibia (BoN) is the central bank of Namibia responsible for performing all other functions ordinarily performed by a central bank. There are four BoN authorized commercial banks in Namibia: Bank Windhoek, First National Bank, Nedbank and Standard Bank.
According to the Namibia Labour Force Survey Report 2012, conducted by the Namibia Statistics Agency, the country's unemployment rate is 27.4%. "Strict unemployment" (people actively seeking a full-time job) stood at 20.2% in 2000, 21.9% in 2004 and spiraled to 29.4% in 2008. Under a broader definition (including people that have given up searching for employment) unemployment rose to 36.7% in 2004. This estimate considers people in the informal economy as employed. Labour and Social Welfare Minister Immanuel Ngatjizeko praised the 2008 study as "by far superior in scope and quality to any that has been available previously", but its methodology has also received criticism.
In 2004 a labor act was passed to protect people from job discrimination stemming from pregnancy and HIV/AIDS status. In early 2010 the Government tender board announced that "henceforth 100 percent of all unskilled and semi-skilled labor must be sourced, without exception, from within Namibia".
In 2013, global business and financial news provider, Bloomberg, named Namibia the top emerging market economy in Africa and the 13th best in the world. Only four African countries made the Top 20 Emerging Markets list in the March 2013 issue of Bloomberg Markets magazine, and Namibia was rated ahead of Morocco (19th), South Africa (15th) and Zambia (14th). Worldwide, Namibia also fared better than Hungary, Brazil, and Mexico. Bloomberg Markets magazine ranked the top 20 based on more than a dozen criteria. The data came from Bloomberg's own financial-market statistics, IMF forecasts and the World Bank. The countries were also rated on areas of particular interest to foreign investors: the ease of doing business, the perceived level of corruption and economic freedom. In order to attract foreign investment, the government has made improvement in reducing red tape resulted from excessive government regulations making the country one of the least bureaucratic places to do business in the region. However, facilitation payments are occasionally demanded by customs due to cumbersome and costly customs procedures. Namibia is also classified as an Upper Middle-Income country by the World Bank and ranks 87th out of 185 economies in terms of ease of doing business.
The cost of living in Namibia is relatively high because most of the goods including cereals need to be imported. Business monopoly in some sectors causes higher profit bookings and further raising of prices. Its capital city, Windhoek is currently ranked as the 150th most expensive place in the world for expatriates to live.
Taxation in Namibia includes personal income tax, which is applicable to the total taxable income of an individual and all individuals are taxed at progressive marginal rates over a series of income brackets. The value-added tax (VAT) is applicable to most of the commodities and services.
Despite the remote nature of much of the country, Namibia has seaports, airports, highways, and railways (narrow-gauge). The country seeks to become a regional transportation hub; it has an important seaport and several landlocked neighbors. The Central Plateau already serves as a transportation corridor from the more densely populated north to South Africa, the source of four-fifths of Namibia's imports.
|Hage Geingob (President)||Hifikepunye Pohamba (Politician)|
The Namibian dollar (code: NAD) has been the currency of Namibia since 1993. It is normally abbreviated with the dollar sign $, or alternatively N$ to distinguish it from other dollar-denominated currencies. It is divided into 100 cents.
The dollar replaced the South African rand, which had been the country's currency while it was under South African rule as South-West Africa from 1920 until 1990. The rand is still legal tender, as the Namibian dollar is linked to the South African rand and can be exchanged on a one-to-one basis locally. Namibia was also part of the Common Monetary Area from independence in 1990 until the introduction of the dollar in 1993.
In 1990, moves were underway to replace the rand with a new Namibian currency. The name kalahar was proposed, as the Kalahari Desert is located in eastern Namibia. The name of Namibia's central bank was going to be known as the Namibia Reserve Bank. Denominations of this planned currency included 2, 5, 10, and 20 kalahar. (Note: There were two different designs for the 20 kalahar specimen notes.) These plans came to nothing, but some specimen notes were printed in a range of denominations.
The Bank of Namibia issued the first banknotes on 15 September 1993 and, in December, issued the first national coins.
Historically, Hendrik Witbooi, once chief of the Namaqua people and instrumental in leading the revolts against German rule at the turn of the 20th century, has been depicted on all Namibian banknotes. However, on 21 March 2012, the Bank of Namibia introduced a new series of banknotes to be issued in May 2012. The new family of banknotes will have the same denomination structure as the current series. All denominations have improved anti-counterfeiting features, and the portrait of Hendrik Witbooi is retained for all but the 10- and 20-dollar notes, which feature a new portrait of Sam Nujoma, the founding president and father of the Namibian nation.
The Bank of Namibia has discovered that the diamond-shaped optically variable ink patch on the N$10 and N$20 notes was cracking after multiple folding and handling. The Bank of Namibia has recently issued in limited quantity, the N$10 and N$20 notes on paper with improved quality and shifted the placement of the diamond-shaped optically variable ink feature.
During the planning phase of the introduction of a new national currency replacing the South African rand, the newly founded Bank of Namibia minted a proof series of coins denominated in dollars as well as in marks, for the consideration of the Namibian Ministry of Finance. The decision then fell in favor of the name ‘dollar’ for the new currency.
The proof series consisted of four different coins: 1 mark, 1 dollar (both in copper/nickel), 10 marks and 10 dollars (both in silver). The obverse of the mark pieces shows a sitting lion where the dollar pieces depict a San (Bushman) with bow and arrow. All obverse sides bear the indication of the denomination as well as the remark ‘PROBE’/‘ESSAI’ (proof). The reverse of the 1-mark/1-dollar pieces shows Namibia’s former coat of arms surrounded by the inscription ‘NAMIBIA’, the year (1990) and two ears of corn. The ten-mark/ten-dollar pieces bear the inscription ‘INDEPENDENCE’/‘UNABHÄNGIGKEIT’ (German: ‘independence’) instead of the ears.
There was a series of Namibian pattern coins denominated in South African Rand dated 1990. This short-lived tender was cited in the 2005 edition of Krause's 'Unusual World Coins'.
|National Song||"Namibia, Land of the Brave"|
|Currency||Namibian dollar (NAD)|
|GDP / GDP Rank||25.962 Billion USD|
|GDP Growth Rate||4.5 Percent|
|GDP Per Captial||$11289.733 (PPP)|
< 1.0% Muslims
< 1.0% Hindus
< 1.0% Buddhists
< 1.0% Jews
< 1.0% Other Religions
President – Hage Geingob[α]
Prime Minister – Saara Kuugongelwa
|Website||Go to the web|
|Public Debt||42.071 Percent|
|Unemployment Rate||25.588 Percent|
|Labor Force (Occupation)||-|