Map Comoros
Maps copyright Hammond World Atlas Corp.

Flag of Comoros


Background: Comoros has endured more than 20 coups or attempted coups since gaining independence from France in 1975. In 1997, the islands of Anjouan and Moheli declared independence from Comoros. In 1999, military chief Col. AZALI seized power in a bloodless coup, and helped negotiate the 2000 Fomboni Accords power-sharing agreement in which the federal presidency rotates among the three islands, and each island maintains its own local government. AZALI won the 2002 presidential election, and each island in the archipelago elected its own president. AZALI stepped down in 2006 and President SAMBI was elected to office. In 2007, Mohamed BACAR effected Anjouan's de-facto secession from the Union, refusing to step down in favor of fresh Anjouanais elections when Comoros' other islands held legitimate elections in July. The African Union (AU) initially attempted to resolve the political crisis by applying sanctions and a naval blockade on Anjouan, but in March 2008, AU and Comoran soldiers seized the island. The move was generally welcomed by the island's inhabitants.
Location: Southern Africa, group of islands at the northern mouth of the Mozambique Channel, about two-thirds of the way between northern Madagascar and northern Mozambique
Area land: 2,235 sq km
Area water: 0 sq km
Coastline: 340 km
Country name conventional long form: Union of the Comoros
Country name conventional short form: Comoros
Country name former: Union of the Comoros
Population: 794,683 (July 2011 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 41.6% (male 166,141/female 164,788); 15-64 years: 55.3% (male 217,046/female 222,093); 65 years and over: 3.1% (male 11,053/female 13,562) (2011 est.);
Population growth rate: 2.696% (2011 est.)
Birth rate: 34.19 births/1,000 population (2011 est.)
Death rate: 7.23 deaths/1,000 population (July 2011 est.)
Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2011 est.)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female; under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female; 15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female; 65 years and over: 0.83 male(s)/female; total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2011 est.);
Infant mortality rate: total: 62.63 deaths/1,000 live births; male: 70.3 deaths/1,000 live births; female: 54.73 deaths/1,000 live births (2011 est.);
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 64.2 years; male: 61.76 years; female: 66.72 years (2011 est.);
Total fertility rate: 4.72 children born/woman (2011 est.);
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.1% (2009 est.);
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: fewer than 500 (2009 est.);
HIV/AIDS - deaths: fewer than 100 (2009 est.);
Nationality: noun: Comoran(s); adjective: Comoran;
Ethnic groups: Antalote, Cafre, Makoa, Oimatsaha, Sakalava;
Religions: Sunni Muslim 98%, Roman Catholic 2%;
Languages: Arabic (official), French (official), Shikomoro (a blend of Swahili and Arabic);
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write; total population: 56.5%; male: 63.6%; female: 49.3% (2003 est.);
GDP (purchasing power parity): $789.4 million (2010 est.); $776.2 million (2009 est.); $762.5 million (2008 est.);

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate): $557 million (2010 est.);
GDP - real growth rate: 1.7% (2010 est.); 1.8% (2009 est.); 1% (2008 est.);
GDP - per capita (PPP): $1,000 (2010 est.); $1,000 (2009 est.); $1,000 (2008 est.);
note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 40%; industry: 4%; services: 56% (2001 est.);
Population below poverty line: 60% (2002 est.);
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 0.9%; highest 10%: 55.2% (2004);
Labor force: 268,500 (2007 est.);
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture: 80%; industry and services: 20% (1996 est.);
Unemployment rate: 20% (1996 est.);
Budget: revenues: $27.6 million; expenditures: $NA (2001 est.);
Industries: fishing, tourism, perfume distillation;
Industrial production growth rate: NA%;
Electricity - production: 22 million kWh (2007 est.);
Electricity - consumption: 20.46 million kWh (2007 est.);
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2008 est.);
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2008 est.);

Statistics: CIA World Factbook.

Comoros in the News

Union Government Takes Control of Rebel Island in Comoros

The political crisis on the Indian Ocean archipelago has been simmering since June 2007, when African Union-monitored polls were held on all three islands—Anjouan, Grand Comore, and Mohéli.