Where is Malawi?

Located in Southern Africa, Malawi has a 2,857.00 km border with Mozambique (1,498 km), Tanzania (512 km) and Zambia (847 km). Malawi is involved in a dispute with Tanzania over the boundary in Lake Nyasa and the meandering Songwe River.

The capital city of Malawi is Lilongwe, which is located in Lilongwe district near the borders of Mozambique and Zambia. The city gained its capital status in 1975 when it was moved from Zamba by the President Hastings Banda to the current location. The city of Lilongwe is divided into two sections: the old and the new. The new part of town houses all the government offices plus embassies while the old has restaurants, cafes, bus stations, and markets. The city of Lilongwe is the most populous city in Malawi with a population of 1,077,116 residents. The city of Lilongwe has several tourist attractions. The city experiences a subtropical climate throughout the year. Hot months start from September to November while cold months are from June to August. The wet season is from October to May with January the rainiest. The best time to visit the city is from April to October. Lilongwe was named after the Lilongwe River which flows through the city.

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Malawi is an African country covering 118,484.00 km2 of which 20.60% is water and 94,080.00 km2 is land. This makes it the 98th largest country in the world and slightly smaller than Pennsylvania. Its geographic coordinates are 13 30 S, 34 00 E and Lilongwe is the capital city.

The name Malawi comes from the East African Maravi Kingdom of the 16th century.

Its ISO code is MW.

Geography

Malawi has a mean elevation of 779 m above sea level.

It has a subtropical climate with a rainy season from November to May and a dry season from May to November. Its terrain consists of a narrow elongated plateau with rolling plains, rounded hills, and some mountains.

Population

Malawi has a population of 18,570,321 making it the 61st largest in the world.

English is the official language; a number of other indigenous languages are also spoken. The major ethnic groups reported are Chewa, Lomwe, Yao and Ngoni. The majority of the population is either Christian or Muslim.

Malawi has two main languages: the national language and the official language. English is the official language while Chichewa is the national language. Between the two, Chichewa is the most widely spoken language in the country. Other languages spoken in Malawi include Chitumbuka, Chiyao, Chinyanja Sena, Lomwe among others. Minority languages spoken in Malawi include Sena, Afrikaans, Zulu, Nyika, Ngonde, Ndali and more. Although English is the official language, it is used by many as a second language. Government schools in Malawi use the national language in teaching.

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The dialing code for the country is 265.

Government

Malawi is an independent country. It gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1964. Its constitution was last ratified in 1995.

The Republic of Malawi is governed by a democratic system of government. The president is both head of state and head of government. In Malawi, the judiciary is independent while the speaker heads parliament. The parliament consists of 193 members elected for a five-year term. The president and his deputy are elected after five years. The Malawian constitution was promulgated in 1995. The president appoints his cabinet and also has the powers to appoint a second vice president. General elections in the country are held after every five years. Citizens 18 years and above are eligible to vote while foreign citizens who have been in the country for more than seven years are also allowed to vote. Members of parliament are elected for a five-year term. Malawi had a single party rule which was abolished through a referendum in 1994. The adoption of multiparty system paved the way for the formation of several parties which are active in the politics of Malawi.

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Economy

Factoring in Purchasing Power Parity, Malawi's GDP is $21,200,000,000.00 (USD) with $1,100.00 (USD) per capita. This makes it the 142nd largest economy and its citizens the 213th richest in the world. The currency of Malawi is the Kwacha (MWK).

Its major export partners are Belgium, Zimbabwe, and India. Its main exports are tobacco, dried legumes, sugar, and tea. Its major import partners are South Africa, China, and India. Its major imports include food, petroleum products, semi-manufactures, and consumer goods.

Flag

The Malawian flag is made up of three horizontal bands of colors green, black, and red. The first stripe has a red sun with thirty-one rays on top. The black color on the flag stands for the people of Malawi while the sun and rays are a symbol of hope and independence after gaining independence. Red is a symbol of the blood spilled during the fight for independence and green stands for the greenery nature of Malawi. The current flag was based on the design of the Pan African flag with the sun and rays the only different elements. Malawi has only used one different flag introduced by the Late President Mutharika. The flag had the bands rearranged from the current arrangement to red, black, and green with the center band having the sun and rays in white. The flag was abolished in 2012 by his successor President Joyce Banda who reintroduced the old flag. Since then it has been used without any modifications. The current flag was adopted officially on July 6, 1964. It is hoisted at every function concerning Malawi all over the world.

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This page was last modified on January 17th, 2018