Country Profile: Sierra Leone
Capital and largest cityFreetown
Other languages and dialectsBassa, Bom, Bullom So, Gola, Kisi, Klao, Kono, Krim, Krio, Kuranko, Limba, Loko, Maninkakan, Mende, Pular, Sherbro, Susu, Themne, Vai, Yalunka
Area71, 740 sq km
Population6, 294, 774 (2007 est.)
Despite English being the official language of Sierra Leone, and taught across schools, in the media and in government administration, Krio is the most widely spoken language in the country, spoken by around 98% of the population. Other language spoken in the country include Bassa, Bom, Bullom So, Gola, Kisi, Klao, Kono, Krim, Krio, Kuranko, Limba, Loko, Maninkakan, Mende, Pular, Sherbro, Susu, Themne, Vai, Yalunka.
Sierra Leone is still recovering from a civil war, but its economy is showing sign of recovery and transition. Agricultural produce in the country includes rice, coffee, cocoa, palm oil, palm kernels, peanuts, poultry, sheep, pigs, cattle, fish. Important industries in Sierra Leone are diamond mining, light manufacturing, beverages, textiles, shoes, petroleum refining, ship repair. The country's natural resources, as well as diamonds, are titanium ore, bauxite, iron ore, gold and chromite. Sierra Leone's major trading partners are Germany, Belgium, US, UK, China, the Netherlands, South Africa and France.
Sierra Leone is a member of the Economic Community of West African States, and also the Mano River Union, which aims to promote economic integration. The country gets significant international aid, with bilateral donors including the US, UK, EU, Italy and Germany. Sierra Leone is also a member of the World Trade Organisation.
Sierra Leone uses fossil fuels for all of its energy needs. This is not a sustainable or environmental solution to energy security, and in the future the government will need to implement more long-term and efficient sources of power.
Sports are extremely popular in Sierra Leone, and in particular, football. Other popular sports are cricket and basketball.
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