ABOUT

BOTSWANA

Originally a British Protectorate and called Bechuanaland, Botswana attained her Independence from Great Britain on 30th September 1966. Botswana is one of Africa's success stories, from one of Africa's poorest countries to a vibrant, developed, middle income African state. Sir Seretse Khama, Botswana's founding President is credited for his prudent management of Botswana's mineral wealth which paved the way for her enviable developmental success.

Sir Seretse Khama passed on in July 1980 and was succeeded by Quett Ketumile Joni Masire who was later knighted. He would lead until 1998, when he stood down from the Presidency to pave way for Mr. Festus Mogae, a well-respected African leader, having received the Mo Ibrahim Awards for Good Governance. Sir Ketumile Masire passed on in June 2017. Mr Festus Mogae would later make way for Sir Seretse Khama's son, Lt General. Dr. Seretse Khama Ian Khama who became Botswana's 4th democratic President. He is to vacate office in 2018.

1966 saw a poverty-stricken Botswana with less than 20kms of tarred road, a GDP of around 0.03 USD Billion and a largely uneducated workforce. Many at the time warned of impending disaster post-independence for Botswana. In their view there was little glimmer of hope that the country would be able stand on its own without the colonial master's assistance.

Three Chiefs
Monument

The statues depict three dikgosi (tribal chiefs): Khama III of the Bangwato, Sebele I of the Bakwena, and Bathoen I of the Bangwaketse.

Botswana
Parliament

The Parliament of Botswana consists of the President and the National Assembly.

Fast forward to 2017, Botswana has been on a transformational journey from her humble beginnings. According to the World Bank, 'GDP in Botswana was worth 14.39 billion US dollars in 2015'. The GDP value of Botswana represents 0.02 percent of the world economy. The country averaged 4.30 USD Billion from 1960 until 2015, reaching an all-time high of 17.22 USD Billion in 2014. These figures show Botswana's economy as one of the fastest growing in Africa.

Diamonds were discovered in 1967 and the diamond proceeds have been a major driver of Botswana's rapid development. The Orapa Mine, owned by Debswana Diamond Company, began operations in 1971, marking the beginning of the 'Diamonds for Development' era. Later on the Jwaneng, Letlhakane, Damtshaa, Karowe and Firestone Mines would also start operations, making Botswana one of the biggest producers of diamonds in the world. The mining sector, in particular diamonds, has played a critical role in Botswana's development. The discovery and subsequent mining of diamonds in partnership with global corporation De Beers became a bedrock of the economy and government revenue. It was through this partnership, that government was able to establish an education system that would be virtually free for all its citizens from primary to tertiary level. It is these efforts that have pushed up the literacy levels in the country to 85%, giving the nation a strong workforce for development.

The revenue has over the years, also been used to drive infrastructure development, extend free universal health care and significant social support system for the citizens.

NATIONAL FLAG

The Botswana flag was officially adopted on 30 September 1966. The colors on the flag correspond to those on the national coat of arms. The blue represents water, the white-black-white bands depict the racial harmony of the people as well as the pluralist nature of the society.

COAT OF ARMS

The Coat of Arms was adopted on 25 January 1966. The centre shield is supported by two zebras. The shape of the shield is that of traditional shields. On the top portion of the shield are three cogwheels that represent industry.

The Pridemark

The purpose of the Nation Brand is to bring Batswana together around a single identity and agreed set of values, in order to stimulate stronger communities, culture and heritage and most importantly instil a greater sense of pride and community engagement in our country.


THE NATIONAL ANTHEM


Area: 581 730 km˛
Population: 2 024 904 (2011 Population Census)
Capital City: Gaborone
Form of Government: Parliamentary Republic
Head of State: President Mokgweetsi E.K. Masisi
Adult Literacy Rate: 82% as per World Bank Report
Official Language: English
National Language: Setswana
Borders: South Africa, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Zambia
GDP: (4.3% 2016) USD 15.6 billion (2016)
Real GDP per Capita: USD 7,019 (2016)
Inflation: (2.8% Av 2016), 3.4 % April 2017
Interest Rates: Bank rate 5.5%: Prime rate 7.5% 2017
International Rankings Source Current Ranking/Countries Regional Ranking
Change Readiness Index KPMG 76/140 in 2019 5th
Economic Freedom The Heritage Foundation 36/180 in 2019 3rd
Global Competitiveness Index World Economic Freedom 90/140 in 2018/19 5th
Doing Business World Bank 86/190 in 2019 7th
Corruption Perception Index Transparency International 61/180 in 2018 2nd
Travel & Tourism Index World Economic Freedom 85/136 in 2017 8th
Mo Ibrahim Mo Ibrahim Foundation 5/54 in 2018
Global Peace Index Institute for Economics and Peace 30/163 in 2018 2nd
Legatum Prosperity Index Legatum Institute 83/146 in 2018 4th
RMB’s Investment Attractiveness Index RMB Global Markets 13/53 in 2019
African Investment Attractiveness Quantum Global 4/54 in 2018
Global Happiness Index John F. Helliwell, Richard Layard and Jeffrey D. Sachs 148/156 in 2018 40th

Botswana currency is the Pula. One (1) Pula is made up of 100 Thebes.

The national currency was launched on August 23, 1976, subsequently known as 'Pula Day'. At the time of launching the Pula, the denomination structure consisted of four notes (P1, P2, P5 and P10) and four coins (1t, 5t, 25t, and 50t). Over the years, due to rising prices, higher value notes have periodically been introduced and coins, which last much longer, are now used for smaller denominations that are used more frequently. The lowest value coins have also been demonetised. The design of the currency has been consistently based on symbolic illustration of the socio-economic, political and cultural make-up of Botswana as a country, including the importance of democracy, tourism and mining. The design has been periodically reviewed both to improved security to counter forgeries and to make appropriate adjustments to the artwork. Regarding the latter, since the launch of the Pula in 1976, it had been the practice for all new notes to feature the portrait of the current president. However, since 1997 each denomination features a different portrait, with only the P10 note showing the current president.

On August 23 2009, exactly 33 years since the introduction of the Pula, a new family of Banknotes as introduced. This included a new P200 denomination note, bearing the image a woman teaching, reflecting both the importance of education and the contribution of women to national development. (Source: Bank of Botswana)

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