General Info:

Highly prospective geology, only recently opened up to exploration
• Land area about 120,000km2 ; Red Sea coastline 1,200 kms

• Population; approximately 5 million (UN 2008), plus another 1 million dispersed globally

• Topography: sea level to a fertile plain at about 2,500m. Steep, rugged escarpment

• Climate: Semi Arid: main rains July-Sept, largely in storms

• Culture: nine ethic groups and languages

• Major Language: Tigtinya, Arabic: English widely used in business

• Major Religions: Islam, Christianity

• Government: People’s Front for Democracy and Justice, the successor to EPLF

• Economy: dominated by agriculture, plus minor industries. Mining will dominate in the future.

• Independent following UN supervised referendum held in 1993.

• GNP per capita: approximately US$800 pa

• Capital: Asmara, since 1900; population approximately 500,000

• Ports: Massawa, which supplies Asmara; Assab, traditionally the major port for Ethiopia

• Airports: Asmara, International; potentially Massawa International (not yet), Assa