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    Zaire Economy - 1990

      Overview: In 1988, in spite of large mineral resources and one of the most developed and diversified economies in Sub-Saharan Africa, Zaire had a GDP per capita of $195, one of the lowest on the continent. Agriculture, a key sector of the economy, employs 75% of the population but generates under 30% of GDP. The main impetus for economic development has been the extractive industries. Mining and mineral processing account for about one-third of GDP and two-thirds of total export earnings. During the period 1983-88 the economy experienced slow growth, high inflation, a rising foreign debt, and a drop in foreign exchange earnings. Recent increases in foreign prices for copper--a key export earner--and other minerals offer some hope of reversing the economic decline. Zaire is the world's largest producer of diamonds.

      GDP: $6.5 billion, per capita $195; real growth rate 2.8% (1988)

      Inflation rate (consumer prices): 82% (1988)

      Unemployment rate: NA%

      Budget: revenues $856 million; expenditures $2.3 billion, including capital expenditures of $655 million (1988)

      Exports: $2.2 billion (f.o.b., 1988); commodities--copper 37%, coffee 24%, diamonds 12%, cobalt, crude oil; partners--US, Belgium, France, FRG, Italy, UK, Japan

      Imports: $1.9 billion (f.o.b., 1988); commodities--consumer goods, foodstuffs, mining and other machinery, transport equipment, fuels; partners--US, Belgium, France, FRG, Italy, Japan, UK

      External debt: $8.6 billion (December 1989 est.)

      Industrial production: growth rate NA%

      Electricity: 2,574,000 kW capacity; 5,550 million kWh produced, 160 kWh per capita (1989)

      Industries: mining, mineral processing, consumer products (including textiles, footwear, and cigarettes), processed foods and beverages, cement, diamonds

      Agriculture: cash crops--coffee, palm oil, rubber, quinine; food crops--cassava, bananas, root crops, corn

      Illicit drugs: illicit producer of cannabis, mostly for domestic consumption

      Aid: US commitments, including Ex-Im (FY70-88), $998 million; Western (non-US) countries, ODA and OOF bilateral commitments (1970-87), $6.0 billion; OPEC bilateral aid (1979-89), $35 million; Communist countries (1970-88), $263 million

      Currency: zaire (plural--zaire); 1 zaire (Z) = 100 makuta

      Exchange rates: zaire (Z) per US$1--465.000 (January 1989), 381.445 (1989), 187.070 (1988), 112.403 (1987), 59.625 (1986), 49.873 (1985)

      Fiscal year: calendar year

      NOTE: The information regarding Zaire on this page is re-published from the 1990 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Zaire Economy 1990 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Zaire Economy 1990 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 07-Feb-03
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