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Burundi Burundi

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Burundi – Quick View
ECR score8.35 (Mar 2011)
ECR rank181 (Mar 2011)
GDP, 2010 (E)USD 1.47 billion
GNI per capita PPP, 2010USD 402
FDI inflow, 2010USD 9.9 million
Inflation, 201011.3%
Central bank assets, 2009USD 649,175.73 million
Unemployment rate35%
Government deficit, 2009USD 48.69 million
Tax revenue, 2009USD 207.37 million
Government typeRepublic
Recent political crisisNA
Economic freedom score, 2011148th
Freedom of information score, 2010108th
Corruption perception index, 2010170th
Crude birth rate, 200934.3 per ‘000
Population balance, 2009Under 14 – 38.4%
Population balance, 2009Over 65 – 2.8%
Life expectancy yearsMale - 51.7 years
Life expectancy yearsFemale - 48.8 years
Mortality rate, 201013.7 per ‘000
Literacy rate, 201059.3%
Internet access, 20100.7%

[Top] Economic Overview

Burundi has a low income economy. Agriculture is the major sector, employing more than 90% of labour force. In 2009, agriculture contributed 45% to the GDP. The major crops grown in the country include coffee, cotton, tea, corn, and sorghum. Coffee is the main export crop of Burundi, contributing more than half of the exports in 2009.


Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

The GDP in the year 2009 amounted to BIF 1,538.5 billion as compared to BIF 1,472.8 billion in 2008. The GDP for the year 2010 is estimated at BIF 1,844.05 billion.

Burundi GDP


(Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa page: 114, IMF)


GDP growth

The GDP growth rate in the year 2009 was registered at 3.2% as compared to 7.5% in 2008.

Burundi GDP Growth Rate

(Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa page: 114)


Gross National Income (GNI) per capita

The GNI per capita at PPP in the year 2010 was USD 402 as compared to USD 359 in 2005.

Burundi GNI per capita at PPP

(Source: UNDP page: 4)

Income Tax Rate

In Burundi, personal income tax rates range from 0.5% to 35%.

(Source: taxrates.cc)

Corporate tax

In Burundi, standard corporate tax is 35% and Value Added Tax (VAT) is 18%.

(Source: taxrates.cc)

Inflation Rate

The inflation rate in the year 2010 is estimated at 7.2% as compared to 10.7% in 2009.

Burundi Inflation Rate

(Source: IMF)

Foreign Direct Investment (FDI)

FDI inflow in the year 2009 was recorded at USD 10 million as compared to USD 14 million in 2008.

Burundi FDI Net inflows

(Source: UNCTAD)

Banking Sector Assets

The table below shows the assets of Bank of Burundi:


Bank of Burundi (BIF million)




Claims on foreign



Claims on the state






Other assets









(Source: Bank of Burundi page: 5)

[Top] Financial Indicators & Government Financial

Consumer Price Index

The consumer price index of Burundi is growing steadily from 2001 to 2009, in 2009 was recorded the highest at 219.5.

Burundi Consumer Price Index

(Source: IMF)

Money Supply


Money Supply (BIF million)





Money supply (M1)








(Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa page: 116)

Government Expenditure

Government expenditure in the year 2009 amounted to BIF 461,788 million as compared to BIF 439,055 million in 2008.

Burundi Total Expenditure & Net Lending

(Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa page 116)

Public debt

Public debt in 2009 was recorded at USD 350 million as compared to USD 1,473 million in 2008.

Burundi Public Debt


(Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa page 116)


Official exchange rate

Burundi Average Exchange Rate

(Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa page: 116)


Government finances

Fiscal balance

Burundi has been recording fiscal deficits since 2001. The fiscal deficit for the year 2009 was recorded at BIF 60,423 million as compared to a deficit of BIF 41,393 million in 2008.

Burundi Fiscal Balance


(Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa page: 116)

Total Revenue

Total revenue in 2009 amounted to BIF 283,710 million as compared to BIF 201,614 million in 2008.

Burundi Total Revenue


(Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa page: 116)

Tax revenue

Tax revenue in 2009 amounted to BIF 257,317 million as compared to BIF 237,096 million in 2008.

Burundi Tax Revenue

(Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa page: 116)

Total Grants

The total grants received in 2009 amounted to BIF 117,655 million as compared to BIF 137,502 million in 2008.

Burundi Total Grants

 (Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa page: 116)

 Current Account Balance

The current account deficit in 2010 is estimated at 9.05% of The GDP as compared to a deficit of 14.54% in 2009.

Burundi Current Account Balance

(Source: IMF)

 Balance of Payments


Balance of Payments (BIF million)




Trade balance



Services Balance



Net Income



Current transfers, net total



Current account balance



(Source: United Nations Economic Commission for Africa page: 116)

[Top] Labour Force and Employment Overview

Labour Force

The labour force of Burundi in 2009 included 4.6 million individuals.

Burundi Labour Force

(Source: World Bank)

Labour Force Participation Rate

The labour force participation rate in the year 2009 for males and females was 88% and 91% respectively.

(Source: World Bank, World Bank)

Unemployment Rate

The unemployment rate in Burundi is estimated at 35% of the economically active population.

(Source: africaneconomicoutlook.org)

Minimum Wage

The minimum wages in Burundi in the year 2011 is BIF 160 per day. The minimum wage for a 19-year old worker or an apprentice is about USD 3 per month.

(Source: minimum-wage, doingbusiness.org)

Level of Unionisation

There major trade unions in Burundi include Confédération des Syndicats du Burundi (COSYBU) and Confédération Syndicale du Burundi (CSB).

(Source: icftu.org)

[Top] Political Stability

Government Stability

Burundi has a republican system of government. The executive powers are with the President and Vice-President. The President is the head of state and also the head of government. The President appoints a cabinet.

The legislative powers are vested with the parliament, which is bicameral. The two houses of parliament are the National Assembly and Senate. The National Assembly has a statutory requirement of 106 members, of whom 100 are directly elected.  The Senate is comprised of 41 members, of whom 34 are indirectly elected by an electoral college including members from the communal councils at the provincial level. Members of both houses are elected for a term of five years.

Major political parties in Burundi include:

  •          National Council for the Defense of Democracy (CNDD- FDD)
  •          National Forces for Liberation (FNL)
  •          Front for Democracy in Burundi (FRODEBU)
  •          National Unity and Progress Party (UPRONA)

(Source: state.gov, estandardsforum.org, IPU)

Regulatory Environment

Burundi is ranked 148th in the 2011 Index of Economic Freedom, with an economic freedom score of 49.6. In the Sub-Saharan Africa region, the country is ranked 31st out of 46 countries.

Burundi Economic Freedom Indices


(Source: heritage.org)

Corruption perception

The Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) is a survey to measure the perceived level of corruption across countries worldwide. Burundi is ranked 170th on the 2010 index indicating very high levels of corruption in public departments.

(Source: transparency.org)

Freedom of Information

Burundi is ranked 108th in the World Press Freedom Index 2010 with a score of 28.88, indicating that media is restricted.

The media in the country is subject to government censorship. The only television and radio station along with a regularly published newspaper is owned and operated by the government.

Major news papers in Burundi include:

  •          Le Renouveau
  •          Ndongozi (Pacesetter)
  •          Arc-en-ciel (Rainbow)
  •          Ubumwe (Unity)

(Source: BBC, rsf)

Judicial System

The country’s judiciary is independent from the executive and legislative powers. The various courts in the country include:

  •          Supreme Court
  •          Constitutional Court
  •          High Court of Justice
  •          Court of Appeal
  •          Provincial High Courts
  •          Resident Magistrate Courts
  •          Hill Courts

The Supreme Court is at the apex of the judicial system. There are three Courts of Appeal and one Provincial High Court in every province.

(Source: nyulawglobal)

[Top] Demographic Overview

The total population of Burundi at mid-year 2009 was 8.3 million as compared to 8.1 million in 2008. Of the total population in 2009, 51% were females.

In 2009, the gender ratio of the country was recorded at 96.1 males per 100 females.

(Source: UN)


Burundi Population by Gender


In 2009, individuals aged below 14 years accounted for 38.4% of the total population whereas people in age group of 65 years and above constituted 2.8%.

(Source: AFDB, UN)

In the period 2005 to 2010, infant mortality rate was registered at 98.3 (per 1,000 live births). The crude birth and death rates were recorded at 34.3 (per 1,000) and 13.7 (per 1,000) respectively.

The life expectancy at birth for the total population is estimated at 50.9 years. The life expectancy for males and females in the period 2005 to 2010 was recorded at 48.8 years and 51.7 years respectively.

(Source: AFDB, UN)

In 2009, 10.7% of the population lived in urban areas. The urban population growth rate in the period 2005 to 2010 was 6.8% and the growth of rural population in the same period was 3.6%.

(Source: AFDB, UN)

The major ethnic groups in Burundi are Hutu, Tutsi, and Twa. The majority of the population are followers of Christianity; other religions include Protestant, Indigenous beliefs and Muslim.

(Source: state.gov)

The country ranks 166th out of 169 countries on the Human Development index 2010 conducted by the United Nations. The HDI provides a composite measure of three dimensions of human development: living a long and healthy life (measured by life expectancy), being educated (measured by adult literacy and gross enrolment in education).

(Source: UNDP)

[Top] Soft Infrastructure

Education Resources

In 2010, the adult literacy rate of the country is estimated at 59.3%. The primary-secondary gross enrolment ratio in the period 2005-2008 for females was 69.2 (per 100 females) and for males were 76 (per 100 males).

The country’s education system was affected by the civil wars and is recovering. In 2005, the government had abolished the fees at the primary level of education. This resulted in an increase in the number of students attending schools.

The student-teacher ratio in the country is 51:1 at the primary education level. The expenditure on education in 2008 was recorded at 7.2% of the country’s GDP. Majority of the government spending is on secondary and tertiary education.

(Source: UNDP, UN, estandardsforum.org)

Healthcare Resources

Burundi’s health system is not well developed owing to the civil war that ended in 2005. The Ministry of Health is responsible for development of healthcare in the country.

The Ministry of Health is organised at different levels:

  •          national level
  •          provincial level
  •          district level
  •          facility level through primary health care (PHC) centres

In 2008, about 72% of total population had access to improved drinking-water and 46% of total population used improved sanitation facilities. In terms of healthcare resources, for every 100,000 individuals, the country has about 200 physicians, 1,348 nurses and midwives and 70 hospital beds.

Major causes of death include HIV/ AIDS, lower respiratory infections, diarrheal diseases and malaria. About 2% of the population suffers from HIV/ AIDS.

The expenditure on health in 2007 was about 5.2% of the country’s GDP.

(Source: UNDP, ghinet, UNICEF, estandardsforum.org)

[Top] Hard Infrastructure

 Mass Public Transit

The mass public transport in the country is by roads. There are no rail services in the country.


The total length of roadways in Burundi is about 12,322 km, of which 10.4% are paved.

(Source: estandardsforum.org)




Airport name

Runway length (ft.)


Bujumbura Intl









Telecommunications Networks

In 2010, the total number of internet users was 65,000 and the internet penetration was 0.7% of the population.


Mobile cellular subscriptions

Fixed telephone lines
















(Source:internetworldstats, ITU, ITU)

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