Guinea

 

Overview of the country

In long form the Republic of Guinea, is a coastal country on the Atlantic coast located in the western part of the African continent. It is between the 7° and 13° North latitudes and the 8° and 15° West longitudes. Covering an area of approximately 245,857 km², it is limited to the west-north-west by Guinea-Bissau (385 km of borders), to the north-west by Senegal (330 km), to the east north-east by Mali (858 km), in the south-east by Côte d'Ivoire (610 km), in the south-south-east by Liberia (563 km), in the west-south-west by Sierra Leone (652 km) and to the west by the Atlantic Ocean with 320 km of coastline.

 

Independence October 2, 1958. Capital: Conakry. Motto: Work – Justice – Solidarity. Flag colors: Red, Yellow, green. National currency: GNF (Guinea New Franc).

 

There are four geographical areas called natural regions:

 

  • A coastal zone, Lower Guinea or Maritime Guinea: 44,254 km².

 

  • A mountainous area, Middle Guinea: 54,089 km²

 

  • A savannah area in the north-east, Haute-Guinea: 98,343 km²

 

  • An area of forests in the south-east, Forest Guinea : 49,171 km².

 

The administrative division is as follows: 8 administrative regions (Boké, Conakry, Faranah, Kankan, Kindia, Labé, Mamou and N’Zérékoré); 33 prefectures and five urban communes in the capital, 307 sub-prefectures.

 

French, the official language of Guinea, is the main language of communication in schools, public administration and the media. The Guinean population presents a great ethnic diversity. The ethnic groups are, among others: Malinké, Konianké, Peulh, Toucouleur, Diakanké, Sosso, Baga, Nalou, Mikoforè, Kissi, Guerzé, Töma, Manon, Kono, Badiaranké, Bassari, Koniagui, Landouma, Lélé, Foulakounda, Tömamanianian, Kouranko, Djallonké. Islam is the dominant religion in the country (85%). The rest of the population practices Christianity (4.3%) and traditional beliefs.

 

Political, economic and social context of the country

  • Political context

Guinea is a laic republic with a presidential regime in which the President of the Republic, head of state, appoints a prime minister, head of government. The executive power is in the hands of the government while the legislative power is shared between the government and the National Assembly.

 

It is a member of the following organizations :

 

  • Sub-regions: OMVS, OMVG, WAMZ, Mano River Union

 

  • Regional: AU, ECOWAS, CILSS, AFRISTAT, CCAFRICA, Inter-African Phytosanitary Council (IAPSC), FAO/WHO Coordinating Committee Region for Africa (CCAFRICA)

 

  • Economic context

Growth, which stood at around 10% in 2016 and 2017, slowed to 5.8% in 2018. It remains robust, however, driven by foreign direct investment (FDI) in the mining sector. The mining industry also grew by around 50% per year in 2016 and 2017. Growth in the non-mining sector reached 5.4% in 2018, investment in infrastructure and the growth of primary and tertiary sectors remain solid.

 

At 9.8% in 2018, inflation approached double digits, driven by rising fuel prices and electricity rates.

 

The overall fiscal balance improved from -2.1% of GDP in 2017 to -1.1% in 2018, due to reduced fuel price subsidies, higher electricity tarrifs and the limitation of recruitments and promotions in the public sector. Despite these measures, tax revenue fell by 0.8% of GDP in 2018 to reach 12.5%. In addition, an exceptional transfer of 0.4% of GDP from the Post and Telecommunications Regulatory Agency contributed to improving the budget balance.

 

On the expenditure side, investments fell by 0.8% of GDP despite an increase in externally financed investment expenditure of 0.7% of GDP. The budget deficit was mainly financed by external resources due to the contraction of domestic financing. The risk of debt distress remains moderate, even though non-concessional external borrowing increased in 2018. Total public debt as a ratio of gross domestic product (GDP) fell to 37.6% in 2018, from 39.6% in 2017.

 

The Guinean economy continues to face two major risks in 2019: the country must stay the course of macroeconomic and budgetary reforms and ensure social and political stability. Slow progress in infrastructure development could slow growth. On the external front, the drop in commodity prices and the slowdown in the global economic situation could hamper the expansion of activity in Guinea.

 

  • Social context

Guinea ranked 24th in the 2019 ranking of countries that produce the least wealth per capita with a gross domestic product per capita of 926 dollars. According to the 2019 report, Guinea ranks 174th in the world, according to the UNDP Human Development Index.

 

Some indicators:

 

    • Exchange rate :US$1 = 9,342.24 GNF and €1 = 10,338.12 (04/02/2020)

 

    • Price index variance (February 2020) / previous month: +1.1%

 

    • Inflation rate 2019 : 9,5%

 

    • Outstanding external debt (2019): US$2,481.0 million

 

    • Money supply (October 31, 2019): GNF 28,470.77 billion

 

Agro-sylvo-pastoral and fishery sector

 

Agriculture

The Government revised its National Agriculture Development Policy (PNDA) in 2017. Its ambition is to develop, on the basis of the National Plan for Agricultural Investment, Food and Nutritional Security (PNIASAN 2018-2025), a modern, sustainable, productive and competitive agriculture on intra-community and international markets. The private sector plays a leading role in achieving these goals, especially in the areas of supply, production, marketing and agricultural services offerings.

 

The diversity of climatic conditions, water resources and soil fertility give Guinea a natural comparative advantage in the production of a wide variety of products. The potential of land, where water control is possible, is also considerable. It is evaluated at 520,000 hectares (ha) including 140,000 ha of mangrove and rear mangrove land, and 200,000 ha of riverine alluvial plains. With an area of 24.6 million hectares, Guinea has 6.2 million hectares of arable land, of which only 50% is exploited, making a cultivated area of 3.3 million hectares (including fallow). Of the 364,000 hectares of irrigable land, only 30,200 hectares are currently under development. 1,250,000 farmers representing around 6.5 million people or 55% of the total population.

 

Breeding

Livestock farming remains the second activity in the rural sector after agriculture. It concerns 283,000 breeders listed in year 2000 and their families, with in 2016 an estimated 6,759,000 cattle, 2,380,000 sheep, 2,851,000 goats, 130,000 pigs and 30,000,000 poultry. It provides income for 30% of the rural population.

 

The main species reared are cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, poultry (local and improved), horses and donkeys. The herd is almost exclusively made up of local breeds: N'Dama cattle (99.9% of cattle), Djallonkés sheep and goats (99.7%) characterized by their hardiness, their ability to adapt to their environment and to enhance natural pastures and especially their resistance to trypanosomiasis. Other species such as rabbits and grasscutters also exist, but in very small numbers. Apart from pigs, which are mainly found in Forest Guinea and Lower Guinea, the other species are distributed over all natural regions.

 

Fishing

Guinea has a seafront coastline of more than 300 km and one of the largest continental shelves in West Africa extending up to 80 nautical miles from the coast. The land potential where water control is possible is estimated at 520,000 ha, including 140,000 ha of mangrove and rear mangrove land, 200,000 ha of riverine alluvial plains.

 

The country has a significant potential in fishery resources composed of four major groups of species: pelagic fish, groundfish (demersal), cephalopods and shrimps. The fishing sector has been identified as a segment of economic activity that can contribute to the country's economic growth, poverty reduction in both urban and rural areas and food security by meeting fish-based animal protein needs.

 

Environment: water resources and forests

Guinea is considered the "water tower of West Africa". A total of 1,161 rivers have been inventoried and the area of the watersheds varies between 5 and 99,168 km². The hydrographic network comprises 23 river basins, 14 of which are international. About 12% of the country's total land area is in the Senegal River basin, 39% in the Niger River basin and 49 percent in the coastal basins.

 

Renewable surface water resources are estimated at 226 km3 / year. Groundwater resources are little and poorly known. They are evaluated at 72 km3 of which 38 km3 are renewable in years of average rainfall.

 

According to the monograph on biological diversity, 3,077 plant species and 3,273 animal species are identified and distributed in the different ecosystems.

 

Guinea has varied forest ecosystems: mangroves, forests (humid, mesophilic and high altitude), dry forests, diversified flora and fauna, as well as particularly abundant rainfall. Protected areas, some of which are internationally recognized, and the coastline. World-famous protected sites: Diécké and Ziama (humid forests), Nimba and Béro mountains and about ten other small forests. The other sites are the Kounounkhan forest, a vast mesophilic primary forest in Maritime Guinea, the Badiar National Park in Middle Guinea, and the Mafou National Park in Upper Guinea. On the coast, six mangrove areas are listed as wetlands of international importance.

 

Additional information

List of some agricultural projects in progress:

 

    • Project for the Development of Integrated Agriculture in Guinea (PDAIG) World Bank financing

 

    • Commercial Agriculture Development Project in Guinea (PACG) World Bank financing

 

    • Rural Mobility and Connectivity Project (RMCP) World Bank financing

 

    • Support Project for the Transformation of Agriculture in Guinea (PATAG – EAJ)

 

    • Family Agriculture Development, Resilience, Markets Project (AGRIFarm) financed by IFAD - OFID

 

    • Rice production systems in mangrove areas (SARITEM) financing (AFD)

 

    • Pole G Agricultural Development Support Program (PADAG) ADF financing