Africa > West Africa > Sierra leone

Sierra leone

Capital: Freetown; GDP growth (annual %) 2016 : 6.1%
Key Facts

Full name: Republic of Sierra Leone
Population: 6 million (UN, 2011)
Area: 71,740 sq km (27,699 sq miles)
Major languages: English, Krio (Creole language derived from English) and a range of African languages
Major religions: Islam, Christianity
Life expectancy: 48 years (men), 49 years (women) (UN)
Monetary unit: Leone
Main exports: Diamonds, rutile, cocoa, coffee, fish
GNI per capita: US $340 (World Bank, 2010)
Internet domain: .sl
International dialling code: +232


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    In 2002 South Africa's Parliament unveiled a digital reproduction of a map - of China, the Middle East and Africa - that some speculated could be the initial map of the African continent. The Da Ming Hun Yi Tu - the Comprehensive Map of the Great Ming Empire - was drawn up around 1389 during the Ming Dynasty, according to historian Hyunhee Park.

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    There has been a 20-fold increase in the number of global climate change laws since 1997, according to the most comprehensive database of relevant policy and legislation.

    The database, produced by the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment and the Sabin Center on Climate Change Law, includes more than 1,200 relevant policies across 164 countries, which account for 95% of global greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Classroom at the rural primary school Ecole Keur Madaro near Thies, Senegal.


    Over the last 15 years, West African governments and the international community have been successful at expanding access to primary schooling and from presently on, a ground-breaking regional learning assessment has revealed that the quality of education has remained elusive. The majority of children surveyed were not acquiring the basic literacy and math skills that are crucial for building human capital in the region.

  • Ebola's Orphans


    The organization Street Child estimates that around 12,000 children have been orphaned by Ebola in Sierra Leone. Khadi Mansaray sat down with founder and CEO Tom Dannant to discuss how the organization has adapted its model to address the needs of these children, and the challenges that remain.

  • His Excellency Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma President of the Republic of Sierra Leone EU Ebola Conference Brussels 3 March 2015


    We are honored to be here to chart ways forward on the current Ebola Outbreak in our nations.

    The EU has always been a great promoter of its core price of social solidarity and human advancement. Ebola tested the durability of these values, but the EU and its member states, inclunding the United Kingdom showed great commitment to these values by supporting our nations to tackle this virus. We deeply appreciate your commitments.

  • Africa: Making Things Happen at the Bank - 'Not a Talk Shop' - Akin Adesina


    Dr. Akinwumi Adesina is focusing on five areas to achieve the African and world goals for a prosperous continent since becoming president of the African Development Bank - Africa's major public financial institution in September 2015. He was a keynote speaker at this month's Corporate Council on Africa's U.S.- Africa Business Summit in Washington D.C. and moderated a lively panel with five African government ministers. He as well received the Gene White Lifetime Succcess Award from the World Child Nutrition Foundation. This week, he was named the 2017 recipient of the World Food Prize, a prestigious honor that includes a $250,000 award. In an interview in Washington, DC, Adesina discussed the Development Bank's ambitious schedule and his vision for attracting the increase capital Africa needs. Posting questions for AllAfrica was Noluthando Crockett-Ntonga.

  • Momodu L. Kargbo, Minister of Finance and Economic Development


    Eager to attract foreign investors and ensure their projects are a success, Sierra Leone has been strengthening macroeconomic situation, investment environment and foreign relations, particularly with China and the UK, to open up the wide scope of opportunities its holds beyond its mining sector to partners overseas. Minister of Finance and Economic Development Momodu L. Kargbo takes a look at the best areas for investment, the 2017 Budget’s target areas for accelerated growth, and the country’s ability to honor its credit obligations. 

  • Outlook for 2015-17


    The country (Sierra Leone) is situated in Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Guinea and Liberia.  Land in Sierra Leone is coastal belt of mangrove swamps, wooded hill country, upland plateau, mountains in east. Sierra Leonean land covers an area of 71740 km².

    The climate is tropical; hot, humid; summer rainy season (May to December); winter dry season (December to April).
    Sierra Leonean(s) speak English (official, regular use limited to literate minority), Mende (principal vernacular in the south), Temne (principal vernacular in the north), Krio (English-based Creole, spoken by the descendants of freed Jamaican slaves who were settled in the Freetown area, a lingua franca and a initial language for 10% of the people but understood by 95%).


    Prior to the Ebola outbreak which started in May 2014, the authorities in Sierra Leone had made considerable evolution since the end of the civil conflict. The outlook for the economy in the medium term, however, is unfavourable following the current EVD crisis. Preliminary analysis shows that economic increase has slowed down to 6.0% in 2014 compared to the original projection of 11.3%. GDP increase is projected to go as low as -2.5% in 2015 and the economy is projected to recover slightly reaching 2.8% in 2016. Inflation is revised upwards from 8.8% to 10% for 2014 and is projected at 9.4% and 8.3% for 2015 and 2016, respectively. The EVD crisis poses a great threat to macroeconomic stability, human development and poverty reduction.

  • Sierra Leone's Port Loko district


    Sierra Leone's Port Loko district hasn't had a case of Ebola for 26 days. But in an effort to boost morale and keep food insecurity at bay, one community group has distributed food and care packages to hundreds of non-quarantined homes. Cinnatus Dumbaya met Mohamed Alusine Kabia of the Port Loko District Indigenes, in the village of Mamusa.