Republic of Zambia is a landlocked country in Southern Africa, neighbouring 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.
The capital city is Lusaka in the south-central part of the country. The population is concentrated mainly around Lusaka in the south and the Copper belt Province to the northwest.
On 24 October 1964, the country became independent of the United Kingdom and then-prime minister Kenneth Kaunda became the inaugural president. Kaunda’s socialist United National Independence Party (UNIP) maintained power from 1964 until 1991.
From 1972 to 1991 Zambia was a single-party state with the UNIP as the sole legal political party under the motto ‘One Zambia, One Nation’. Kaunda was succeeded by Frederick Chiluba of the social-democratic Movement for Multi-Party Democracy in 1991, beginning a period of social-economic growth and government decentralisation.
In 2010, the World Bank named Zambia one of the world’s fastest economically reformed countries. The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) is headquartered in Lusaka.
Zambia is consists mostly of high plateaus with some hills and mountains dissected by river valleys. At 752,614 km2 it is the 39th-largest country in the world, slightly smaller than Chile. The country lies mostly between latitudes 8° and 18°S and longitudes 22° and 34°E.
Zambia is drained by two major river basins: the Zambezi/Kafue basin in the centre, west and south covering about three-quarters of the country and the Congo basin in the north covering about one-quarter of the country.
The climate of Zambia is tropical, modified by elevation. In the Köppen climate classification, most of the country is classified as humid subtropical or tropical wet and dry with small stretches of semi-arid steppe climate in the south-west and along the Zambezi valley.
There are two main seasons, the rainy season (November to April) corresponding to summer, and the dry season (May/June to October/November), corresponding to winter. The dry season is subdivided into the cool dry season (May/June to August), and the hot dry season (September to October/November). However, average monthly temperatures remain above 20 °C (68 °F) over most of the country for eight or more months of the year.
General information about Zambia has been summarized to include the following
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