Country Profile

Geography

The Republic of Kenya is in East Africa and is bordered by Tanzania, Uganda, Sudan, Ethiopia, Somalia and the Indian Ocean.

Nairobi ,the capital city, is the seat of government and the major business centre and has a population: 2.1 Million . The main port is Mombasa.

Much of Kenya is plateaux with highland areas. The Great Rift Valley runs the length of the country. Mount Kenya, an extinct volcano, is the second highest mountain in the continent. The main rivers are the Galana and Tana and lakes include Lake Turkana and Lake Victoria (the Lake Victoria region includes Tanzania and Uganda as well as Kenya).
Area

Covers an area of 225, 000 sq miles (582, 646 sq km) Approximately the size of New South Wales, Australia.

Administrative Divisions

Eight Provinces including the Nairobi area. Provinces are: Central, Coast, Eastern, Nyanza, Rift Valley, Western and North Eastern. These provinces are divided into administrative areas known as districts.

Language

The official languages are English and Kiswahili. English is the language of business and Kenyans generally speak good English. Kiswahili is the national language and 40 other local languages are spoken.

Local Currency The unit of currency is the Kenya shilling (Ksh), divided into 100 cents; 20 shillings = 1 Kenya pound, but prices are normally quoted in shillings. The following denominations are in
circulation:
Notes: 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1,000 shillings.
Coins: 1, 5, 10 and 20 shillings and 50 cents.

Climate

Pleasant and favorable with plenty of sunshine all year round. Rainfall is sometimes heavy around April to May while some areas are more cloudy though without much rain around July/August.

Population

32,021,856 (2004 est.) 2.4% Average population growth per annum (2001)
53% of the population: 15-65 years old
44% of the population: under 15 years old
Female-Male ratio; 52:48

Religion

40 percent of the population is Protestant; thirty percent are Roman Catholic and some, mainly along the coast, are Muslims. Many of the population practise African religious beliefs.

Labor Force (by occupation)

Agriculture 75%-80%

Industries
Small-scale consumer goods (plastic, furniture, batteries, textiles, soap, cigarettes, flour), agricultural products processing; oil refining, cement; tourism

Agricultural Produce
Coffee, Tea, Corn, Wheat, Sugarcane, Fruit, Vegetables; Dairy Products, Beef, Pork, Poultry, Eggs

Exports
Tea, Coffee, Horticultural Products, Petroleum Products

Imports
Machinery and Transportation Equipment, Petroleum Products, Iron and Steel
Natural Resources: Gold, Limestone, Soda Ash, Salt Barites, Rubies, Fluorspar, Garnets, Hydropower.

Environment

Kenya’s natural environment is varied: coral reefs along the coastline, tropical rainforests, savannah, semi-desert and mountains with alpine regions. Its plant life includes rainforest flora and alpine plants.

Like other rainforests, the Kenyan forests have suffered severe deforestation. As part of its conservation programme Kenya has many parks and reserves under the protection of the Wildlife Service.

Kenya’s parks and reserves are home to many birds and other wildlife. There are over one thousand species of birds including flamingos and lovebirds. Animals found in the reserves are elephants, lions, cheetahs, leopards, giraffes, zebras, crocodiles, rhinos and the hippopotamus.