Country Profile: Republic of the Congo
Capital and largest cityBrazzaville
Other citiesBomassa, Diosso, Kayes, Makoua, Matsanga, Nkayi, Oyo, Loubomo, Ewo, Madingou
Official languagesFrench, Kongo, Kituba, Lingala, Fang,
Area342, 000 sq km
Population3, 999, 000 (2005 est.)
Although French is the official language of the Republic of the Congo, other languages spoken include Makaa-Njem, Fang, Kituba, Kongo, Lari and Lingala.
The main industry in the Republic of the Congo is petroleum production, as well as forestry and agriculture. Although much of the country's food must be imported, subsistence produce includes sugarcane, cassava, rice, corn, vegetables, cocoa, coffee, peanuts, palm products. Other export products include diamonds, tobacco, lumber and plywood.
Mining is important in the country, especially of the Republic of Congo's natural resources, such as oil, diamonds, potash, lead, zinc, uranium, copper, phosphates and natural gas. Major trading partners include China, the United States, and France.
As well as agriculture and industry, at a local level, handicrafts are an important source of income. The country has received aid from the World Bank and IMF, and through this has enacted a series of government reforms. The Republic of the Congo is a member of the Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa.
The Republic of the Congo's main industry is petroleum production, which forms the basis of its energy use. However, as this is a damaging means of producing energy, with long-lasting impact on the environment, the country will in the future need to start thinking of more sustainable means of producing energy.
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