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Guinea-Bissau Guinea-Bissau

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Guinea-Bissau – Quick View
ECR score27.78 (Mar 2011)
ECR rank145 (Mar 2011)
GDP (2010)USD 0.81 billion
GNI per capita (2010)USD 538
FDI inflow (2008)USD 15 million
Inflation (2010)1.9%
Central bank assetsUSD 0.09 million
Unemployment rateNA
Government deficitUSD 1,391.38 million
Tax revenueUSD 4.59 billion
Government typeDemocratic Republic
Recent political crisisNA
Economic freedom score (2011)159th
Freedom of information score (2010)67th
Corruption perception index (2010)154th
Birth rate40.8 per '000
Population balanceUnder 14 – 42.64%
Population balanceOver 65 – 3.45%
Life expectancy yearsMales – 46.1
Life expectancy yearsFemales – 49.2
Mortality rate16.9 per '000
Literacy rate69.5%
Internet access2.4%

[Top] Economic Overview

Gross Domestic Product (GDP)


Nation’s gross domestic product for 2010 was FCFA 410.3 billion, with a real GDP growth rate at 3.5%.  


                                                     Guinea-Bissau GDP and Real GDP growth rate 

(Source: National Statistics, IMF,


Guinea-Bissau has recorded a growth in its GDP since 2004 despite experiencing a decline in 2002 and 2003. Real GDP growth rate reached as high as 5% in 2005 and as low as -3.5 in 2003.


GDP per capita


In 2009, Guinea-Bissau’s GDP per capita was USD 519 as compared to USD 538 in 2008.


                                          Guinea-Bissau GDP per capita


(Source: World Bank)


Gross National Income (GNI)


Gross national income of Guinea-Bissau in 2009 was registered at USD 825.93 million, increasing 13% from the previous year. In 2008, the nation’s GDP at current prices were recorded at USD 732.46 million.


(Source: World Bank)


In 2009, the country’s GNI per capita at current prices was recorded at USD 510, compared to USD 460 in 2008.


(Source: World Bank)


GNI per capita (PPP)


Gross national income per capita at PPP in 2010 was USD 538, compared to USD 531.7 in the year 2009.

                                                               Guinea-Bissau GNI per capita at PPP

(Source: UNDP)


Tax rates


Income tax


The top income tax rate in Guinea-Bissau is 20%.




Corporate tax


The corporate tax rate for the companies in Guinea-Bissau is 25%.




Sales tax in the country was  recently reduced to 10% from the previous 15%.






Annual inflation rate in the country for 2010 was recorded at 1.9%.


(Source: National Statistics)


                                                               Guinea-Bissau Inflation Rate


(Source: IMF, National Statistics)


Inflation rate in the country has fluctuated since 2003 when the nation went into deflation. 


Foreign direct investment (FDI)


Total foreign direct investment inflow in the country was USD 15 million in 2008, declining by 21.05% over the previous year.


                                                                       Guinea-Bissau FDI Inflow


(Source: AFDB)


Banking sector assets


Banking sector assets (CFAF billion)





Net foreign assets




Central bank









(Source: Central Bank)

[Top] Financial Indicators & Government Financial

Consumer price index (CPI)


Consumer price index for 2009 decreased to 122.9 from 124.7 in 2008.


                                                Guinea-Bissau Consumer Price Index


Base: Year 2000 = 100


(Source: AFDB)


CPI in the country has constantly risen since 2004.  Furthermore, it registered a steep rise from 112.9 in 2007 to 124.7 in 2008.


Interest rates


The interest rate for a deposit in the country was 3.5% in 2008.




Money supply


In 2009, broad money (M2) in the country increased by about 8% from 2008. Additonally, broad money in 2009 and 2008 was CFAF 96.3 billion and 89.2 billion respectively.



                                             Guinea-Bissau Money Supply

(Source: AFDB, page: 223, 59)


Public debt levels


In 2009, public external debt was registered at USD 1,043 million.


(Source: AFDB)


Official exchange rate


In 2010, the annual average exchange rate of CFA Franc per USD dollar was 472.2, almost the same as the 2009 exchange rate of CFAF 472.19 per USD.



                                                       Guinea-Bissau Exchange Rate


(Source:  National Statistics, AFDB)



Government finances


Fiscal balance


The nation’s fiscal balance for 2009 recorded a deficit of CFAF 684,161 million.  

                                                Guinea-Bissau Fiscal Balance


(Source: AFDB)


Total revenue


Guinea-Bissau’s total revenue for 2009 was CFAF 11,345.80 million, increasing 73.5% over the previous year’s revenue.  

                                                                          Guinea-Bissau Government Revenue


 (Source: AFDB)


Tax revenue


The total tax revenue of Guinea-Bissau in 2008 was CFAF 2,090 billion, compared to CFAF 1,880 billion in the previous year.


                                                              Guinea-Bissau Tax Revenue


(Source: AFDB)


Total grants


Total grants to the country in 2008 increased by 13% from the previous year.  


                                                          Guinea-Bissau Grants



(Source: AFDB)


Current account balance (CAB)


In 2009, the country registered a deficit of USD 13 million, compared to a deficit of USD 15 million in 2008.



                                                                Guinea-Bissau Current Account Balance

(Source: AFDB)


Guinea-Bissau has registered a current account deficit since 2001,except for in 2004 and 2007, where the current account balance was in a surplus of USD 19 million and USD 36 million respectively.


Balance of Payments


Balance of Payments (USD million)




Trade balance



Services balance



Net income



Current transfers



Current account balance




(Source: AFDB)

[Top] Labour Force and Employment Overview

In 2008, labour force in the country was registered at 0.65 million. 


(Source: World Bank)


Unemployment rate


Information on unemployment is not available for Guinea Bissau.


Minimum wage/ employment rights


Minimum wage in the country is CFAF 15,000 per month.




Level of unionisation


Until 1991, the African Party for the Independence of Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde (PAIGC) controlled the trade union through National Union of the Workers of Guinea-Bissau.


The current trade unions are:

  • National Union of the Transport and Communications Workers (SNTTC)
  • National Union of Teachers appeared (SYNAPROF)
  • Association of the Magistrates of Guinea-Bissau (AMAGUI)
  • Association of Journalists of Guinea-Bissau (AJGB)

Along with the above mentioned unions there are also a few sector based trade unions actively operating in the country.


(Source: etat)

[Top] Political Stability

Guinea-Bissau is a democratic country. Hence, the president is the head of state and elected by a direct popular vote for a term of five year. The prime minister of the country is chosen by the president and the party leader of the legislature.

The National People’s Assembly is a unicameral parliament whose members are elected by direct popular vote in multi-member constituencies for the term of four years.

Historically, the country has had many different political situation since independence, which include:

  • 1974-1980 One Party State (PAIGC - African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde)
  • 1980-1984 Military Regime & One Party State (PAIGC)
  • 1984-1991 One Party State (PAIGC)
  • 1991-1994 Multiparty Transition
  • 1994-1999 Democracy
  • 1999 Transitional Government
  • 1999-2003 Democracy
  • 2003-2005 Transitional Government
  • 2005- Democracy



Different political parties in the country are:

  • African Party for the Independence of Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde (PAIGC)

  • Guinea-Bissau Resistance-Ba Fata Movement (RGB-MB)

  • Party for Democratic Convergence (PCD)

  • Social Renovation Party (PRS)

  • Union for Change (UM)

  • Frente Democratica (FD)

  • Frente Democratica Social (FDS)

  • Movimento para a Unidade e a Democracia (MUDE)

  • Partido Unido Social Democratico (PUSD)

  • Frente de Libertacao para Independencia Nacional da Guinée (FLING)

  • Frente Democratico para a Reconstrucao e Desenvolvimento da Guine-Bissau (FDRGB)

  • Partido para Reconstrucao e Desenvolvimento



Regulatory environment in Guinea-Bissau


Government in Guinea-Bissau is based on a Democratic framework, where the head of the state is the representative of the people, chosen by the people and is bound to govern by the constitutional law. 


                                                     Guinea-Bissau Economic Freedom Indices

The country’s economic freedom score is 46.5, making its economy the 159th freest in the 2011 Index of Economic Freedom. Guinea-Bissau’ overall score is well below the the global and regional averages.




Corruption perception


The Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) is a survey to measure the perceived level of corruption across countries worldwide. Guinea-Bissau is ranked 154th on the 2010 list, which indicates that the corruption levels in public departments in the country is high.


Guinea-Bissau has climbed on the CPI rankings since 2009, when it was ranked 162nd with a score of 1.9, which indicates that the perceived levels of corruption have decreased in the country.


Freedom of information


Media in the country was highly repressive till 2003, when Journalists used to be detained. 


(Source: BBC)                 

Guinea-Bissau ranked 67th in World Press Freedom Index 2010 with a score of 18.25 which indicates that media is restricted.





The press

  • No Pintcha - state-run

  • Correio de Bissau - private

  • Fraskera - private

  • Banobero - private


  • Radio Televisao de Guinea-Bissau (RTGB) - state-run

  • RTP Africa - operated by Portuguese public broadcaster RTP; run by local management but with studios and infrastructure funded by Portugal


  • Radio Nacional - state-run

  • Radio Pindjiguiti - private

  • Bombolom FM - private

  • Voice of Quelele - private

News agency/internet

  • Guinea-Bissau News Agency (ANG) - state-run

  • Agencia Bissau Media e Publicacoes (ABMP)

  • Bissau Digital


(Source: BBC)

Judicial system


The judicial system of the country is comprised of the Supreme Court and lower courts.


[Top] Demographic Overview

The total population of Guinea-Bissau in mid-2009 was 1.61 million, increasing 2.3% over the previous year.


                                             Guinea-Bissau Population

(Source: AFDB)



                                                                    Guinea-Bissau Population by Gender

(Source: AFDB)


Gender ratio

The gender ratio in the country is marginally imbalanced as the country has 98.2 men per 100 women.

(Source: UN)


Population by age group

                                         Guinea-Bissau Population by age group

(Source: AFDB)


Mortality rate


Mortality rate 2009 was 16.9 per 1000 people, compared to 17.2 deaths in 2008. Specifically, the infant mortality rate for between 2005 and 2010 was 114.1.


(Source: AFDB, UN)


Birth rate


Birth rate in the country during 2009 was 40.8 per 1000 populations. The birth rate has decreased gradually since 2001, when the rate was 43.1


(Source: AFDB)


Average life expectancy rate


Average life expectancy at birth in 2009 was 48.2 years. Specifically, for males and females for the period from 2005 to 2010 was 46.1 years and 49.2 years respectively.


(Source: AFDB, UN)


Migration and urbanisation


Net migration in Guinea-Bissau between 2005 and 2010 was -1.6 per 1000 people. The international migrant stock till mid 2010 was recorded at 19,200 people, approximately 1.2% of the entire population. Out of total immigrants, 50% were females.


(Source: IOM, UN)


In 2009, about 30% of the total population were residing in urban areas, while people living in rural areas were about 70%.


(Source: AFDB)


From 2005 to 2010, the urban population in the country grew at an annual rate of 3.3%. Similarly, for the same period, the rural population increased at a rate of 2.9%.

(Source: UN)


Ethnic Environment


Ethnic groups in Guinea-Bissau are divided as follows:

  • Balanta (30%)

  • Fula (20%)

  • Manjaca (14%)

  • Mandinga (13%)

  • Papel (7%)

  • Others (16%)


Religions followed in the country are:

  • Indigenous beliefs (50%)

  • Muslim (40%)

  • Christian (10%)



Human Development Index (HDI)


Guinea-Bissau ranked 164th 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) and having a decent standard of living (measured by purchasing power parity, PPP, income). 


(Source: UNDP)

[Top] Soft Infrastructure

Literacy rate


Literacy rate of Guinea-Bissau was 69.5% in 2010, compared to 67.9% in 2009.


(Source: UNDP)


Educational resources


Education in Guinea-Bissau consists of three levels – Primary, Secondary and Tertiary or higher education. Primary education which is compulsory and free is for children aged 7 to 13. The number of student enrolling for primary school in the country is about 50%. Furthermore, the number of girls and boys attending school is 32% and 58% respectively.

Secondary education is further divided:  

  • 3 years of general secondary stream and 2 years of post secondary education
  • 3 years of vocational program

Vocational training is provided to the students who have completed grade 6.  Students then can take vocational-technical training courses such as mechanics, construction, and agribusiness.


Higher or Tertiary education is provided by the country’s first university – ‘The Amilcar Cabral University’ that offers higher degree courses in education, law, medicine, veterinary medicine, engineering, agronomy, economics, sociology, modern languages and journalism.


(, guinea-bissau education info)


Healthcare system


Guinea-Bissau is 176th out of 190 countries in WHO’s world’s health care systems ranking. This low ranking is because modern healthcare facilities are not yet available in the country. Furthermore, there is only one fully functioning maternity ward and a lack of trained mid-wives.

The number of physicians and nurses per 100,000 is 10 and 70 respectively. There are 70 hospital beds per 100,000 and 40 pharmacists in the country.

Major causes of death in the country includes cardiovascular diseases (449 per 100,000 people), followed by AIDS, (170 per 100,000 people), cancer (159 per 100,000) and tuberculosis (44 death per 100,000 people).

In 2006, total expenditures on health care was 5.8% of GDP and per capita health expenditure was USD 29.       


[Top] Hard Infrastructure

The mass public transportation system in the country is roadways.


The country has 4,400 km of roads and 10.3% of which are covered with asphalt.





There are two ports in the country namely, Port of Bissau and Port of Bolama.


(Source:world port source)




The only airport in Guinea Bissau is Osvaldo Vieira, which is in the town Bissau with a runway length of 10,400 feet.




Telecommunications networks


In 2009, number of fixed telephone lines in the country was 4,844, with an increase of about 4.24% from 2008. The country has 0.30 fixed telephone lines per 100 inhabitants in 2009.


                                         Guinea-Bissau Fixed Telephone Subscribers


(Source: ITU)


In 2009, mobile cellular subscription increased by about 12%, compared to the previous year. The number of mobile cellular subscriptions in 2009 was 560,345, against 500,156 in 2008. Furthermore, there were 34.79 mobile subscriptions per 100 inhabitants in 2009, compared to 31.75 in 2008.


                                               Guinea-Bissau Mobile Subscribers

(Source: ITU)

In June 2009, 37,100 people, or 2.4% of the total population used internet services.


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