Somalia is on the Horn of Africa along the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean. Djibouti lies to the northwest, Ethiopia is in the west and Kenya is to the southwest. Somalia also has two major rivers, the Shebelle and the Juba. Somalia has often been wracked by fighting among warlords and factions.
Somalia - Facts and Figures
- Official name is Soomaaliya.
- The terrain is mostly flat, undulating plateaus, becoming hills in the north.
- Somalia is mostly desert with moderate temperatures in the north and very hot in the south.
- Somalia’s land borders are 2,366 kilometers long while 3,025 is coastline.
- Area: 637,657 sq km, of which 627,337 sq km is land and 10,320 sq km is water.
- There was no working government between 1991 and 2000. A parliamentary government was replaced in 2004 by a transitional government.
- Somalia’s population is close to 9 million, 85% of which is Somali with Bantu and Arabs making up the rest.
- The official language is Somali. Arabic, English and Italian are also spoken.
- Islam is the dominant religion in Somalia.
- Capital is Mogadishu.
- Major exports are livestock, bananas, hides, fish, charcoal and scrap metal.
- The local currency is the Somali shilling.
- Agricultural products are bananas, sorghum, corn, coconuts, rice, sugarcane, mangoes, sesame seeds, beans, cattle, sheep, goats and fish.
- Major trading partners include United Arab Emirates, Yemen, Oman, Djibouti, Kenya, India and Brazil.