Understanding a nation

The Zambia Society Trust

About Zambia

Zambia is a land locked country in southern Africa. It is the largest copper producing country in Africa and is home to the Victoria Falls, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. On 24th October 1964 Zambia became an independent country; prior to this date it had been known as Northern Rhodesia and ruled by the United Kingdom.

Geography


Spread over 752,614 km2, Zambia is the 39th largest country in the world. It is a land locked country bordered by the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the north, Tanzania to the north-east, Malawi to the east, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia to the south, and Angola to the west. 

Zambia enjoys a pleasant sub-tropical climate with three main seasons, rainy season (November to April), cool dry season (May to August) and hot dry season (September to November). The average day time temperature is 20°C throughout most of the country.

Economy


Zambia has a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of $24 billion with a GDP per capita of approximately $1,700. The main industries are copper mining, construction, foodstuffs, beverages, chemicals, textiles, fertilizer, and horticulture. Zambia exports approximately $8.5 billion of products with copper accounting for over 60 per cent of this amount. Other major exported products are cobalt, electricity, tobacco and flowers.

Demographics


Zambia has a population of over 14.5 million. The population is made up of approximately 72 ethnic groups with the Tonga and Bemba ethnolinguistic groups being the largest. Of the working population approximately 85 per cent work within the agriculture sector, six per cent in industry and four per cent in the service industry.
 
Some key facts:

  • The average life expectancy in Zambia is 57 years.
  • Over 60 per cent of the population live below the international poverty line (which is $1.25 a day to live on).
  • Youth female and male literacy rates stand at around 70 per cent and 58 per cent respectively.

Zambia has been particularly affected by the HIV/ AIDS crisis with approximately 1.1 million people living with HIV. The HIV/ AIDS epidemic has led to a decline in the adult population with over 50 per cent of the total population being aged 18 years or younger. 

A key fact:

  • The total number of orphans living in Zambia is over 1.1 million and of this number approximately 670,000 children have been orphaned as a direct result of HIV/ AIDS.

Such a drastic statistic is one of the key reasons why The Zambia Society Trust focuses its assistance on the orphaned and other vulnerable children of Zambia.
Map of Zambia