Bissau, Guinea-Bissau

Bissau, Guinea-Bissau

According to abbreviationfinder, Bissau is the capital of Guinea Bissau. The city is located in the central-western portion of the country, close to the mouth of the Geba River. It is the largest city in the country, as well as the main port and the military and administrative center.

History

Bissau was founded in 1687 by the Portuguese, who used it as a commercial center and fortified port. In 1942 it was proclaimed the capital of the country. In 1962 the African guerrilla groups against the Portuguese arose in this city, which in the years 1973 – 1974 achieved the independence of the country.

Geography

The city of Bissau looks out to the Atlantic Ocean from a plain surrounded by jungle, swamps and rain forests. In front of the city is the Bijagos archipelago.

Location

Bissau is the capital of Guinea Bissau, a state located on the Atlantic coast of the African continent. It has borders with Senegal and Guinea. The city is located in the central-western portion of the country, close to the mouth of the Geba River.

Climate

Bissau’s climate is tropical, with a rainy season from May to November and a dry season from December to April.

Population

Bissau is a small city that in 2001 had a population of 197,610 residents and a great Portuguese influence. The main existing ethnic groups are the Fulani, Mandingo and Balante, mostly Muslim. See population of Guinea-Bissau.

Natural environment

Very close to the city are the Orango Islands National Park, and the Bolama – Bijagós Archipelago Biosphere Reserve.

Economic development

Bissau is the administrative center and main port of the country. That is why its economy is based on exports through the sea of ​​certain products, mainly: peanuts, palm oil, wood, copra, walnuts, skins, rice and wax.

Tourist attractions

Bissáu is popular for its annual carnival. It has attractions including the Fortress d’Amura, the Guinea Bissau National Institute of Arts, the New Guinea Bissau Stadium, and local beaches. During the Guinea Bissau Civil War, many buildings were destroyed, including the Presidential Palace and the French Cultural Center, so part of the city center is still under construction.

Guinea-Bissau

Guinea-Bissau’s GDP per capita is one of the lowest in the world. Its Human Development Index is also one of the lowest on earth. More than two thirds of the population live below the poverty line. The economy depends mainly on agriculture, nuts and fish: Cashew and earth nuts are its main exports. A long period of political instability has resulted in depressed economic activity, deteriorating social conditions, and increased macroeconomic imbalances.

Guinea-Bissau has started to show some economic progress after a stability pact signed by the country’s main political parties, leading to an IMF-backed program of structural reforms. The key challenges for the country are achieving fiscal discipline, rebuilding public administration, improving the economic climate for private investment, and promoting economic diversification. After gaining independence from Portugal in 1974 due to the Portuguese colonial war and the Lisbon Carnation Revolution, the exodus of Portuguese civil, military and political authorities, brought tremendous damage to the country’s economic infrastructure, social order and the quality of life.

After several years of economic recession and political instability, in 1997, Guinea-Bissau entered the CFA franc monetary system, leading to some internal monetary stability. The civil war that took place in 1998 and 1999, and a military coup in September 2003 again disrupted economic activity, leaving a substantial part of the economic and social infrastructure in ruins and intensifying poverty already widespread. After the parliamentary elections in March 2004 and the presidential elections in July 2005, the country is trying to recover from a long period of instability although the political situation remains fragile.

Starting around 2005, Latin American-based drug traffickers began using Guinea-Bissau, along with several neighboring West African countries, as a transshipment point for cocaine to Europe. The nation was described by a United Nations official as at risk of becoming a “narco-state.” The government and the army did almost nothing to stop this business. In 2009 almost all transports through Guinea Bissau have been stopped and moved to Mali.

Guinea-Bissau is a member of the Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa (OHADA).

Social development

Culture

The streets and architecture of Bissau denote its past as a Portuguese colony. The most important buildings in the city are the National Palace (although it cannot be photographed), the Youth Art Center and the National Museum. The Central Market and the Port of the city are worth a visit.

Crafts

Work on leather and wood are the basis of crafts Bissau.

Holidays and traditions

There are three origins of the festivities in Bissau: Catholicism, Islam and the facts of national liberation. Thus, the New Year and Christmas are holidays, as well as the beginning and end of Ramadan and the days of Independence (September 24) and the death of the independence leader Amilcar Cabral, on January 20.

Transport and communication

The capital of Guinea Bissau has the Osvaldo Vieiro International Airport

Illustrious people

Nélson António Soares da Gama, forward for the Porto soccer team and junior world champion with Portugal in 1991, was born in Bissau in 1972. Amilcar Cabral, martyr of national liberation, resided in the city.

Bissau, Guinea-Bissau