Home

Central African Republic vs. Democratic Republic of the Congo

Demographics

Central African RepublicDemocratic Republic of the Congo
Population
5,990,855 (July 2020 est.)

note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected

101,780,263 (July 2020 est.)

note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected

Age structure
0-14 years: 39.49% (male 1,188,682/female 1,176,958)
15-24 years: 19.89% (male 598,567/female 593,075)
25-54 years: 32.95% (male 988,077/female 986,019)
55-64 years: 4.32% (male 123,895/female 134,829)
65 years and over: 3.35% (male 78,017/female 122,736) (2020 est.)
0-14 years: 46.38% (male 23,757,297/female 23,449,057)
15-24 years: 19.42% (male 9,908,686/female 9,856,841)
25-54 years: 28.38% (male 14,459,453/female 14,422,912)
55-64 years: 3.36% (male 1,647,267/female 1,769,429)
65 years and over: 2.47% (male 1,085,539/female 1,423,782) (2020 est.)
Median age
total: 20 years
male: 19.7 years
female: 20.3 years (2020 est.)
total: 16.7 years
male: 16.5 years
female: 16.8 years (2020 est.)
Population growth rate
2.09% (2020 est.)
3.18% (2020 est.)
Birth rate
33.2 births/1,000 population (2020 est.)
41 births/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Death rate
12.3 deaths/1,000 population (2020 est.)
8.4 deaths/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Net migration rate
0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2020 est.)
-0.9 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Sex ratio
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.92 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.64 male(s)/female
total population: 98.8 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.93 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.76 male(s)/female
total population: 99.9 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
Infant mortality rate
total: 80.6 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 87.7 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 73.2 deaths/1,000 live births (2020 est.)
total: 64.5 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 70.3 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 58.4 deaths/1,000 live births (2020 est.)
Life expectancy at birth
total population: 54.2 years
male: 52.7 years
female: 55.7 years (2020 est.)
total population: 61 years
male: 59.3 years
female: 62.8 years (2020 est.)
Total fertility rate
4.14 children born/woman (2020 est.)
5.77 children born/woman (2020 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate
3.6% (2019 est.)
0.8% (2019 est.)
Nationality
noun: Central African(s)
adjective: Central African
noun: Congolese (singular and plural)
adjective: Congolese or Congo
Ethnic groups
Baya 28.8%, Banda 22.9%, Mandjia 9.9%, Sara 7.9%, M'Baka-Bantu 7.9%, Arab-Fulani (Peul) 6%, Mbum 6%, Ngbanki 5.5%, Zande-Nzakara 3%, other Central African Republic ethnic groups 2%, non-Central African Republic ethnic groups .1%
more than 200 African ethnic groups of which the majority are Bantu; the four largest tribes - Mongo, Luba, Kongo (all Bantu), and the Mangbetu-Azande (Hamitic) - make up about 45% of the population
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS
100,000 (2019 est.)
520,000 (2019 est.)
Religions
Christian 89.5%, Muslim 8.5%, folk 1%, unaffiliated 1% (2010 est.)

note: animistic beliefs and practices strongly influence the Christian majority

Roman Catholic 29.9%, Protestant 26.7%, Kimbanguist 2.8%, other Christian 36.5%, Muslim 1.3%, other (includes syncretic sects and indigenous beliefs) 1.2%, none 1.3%, unspecified .2% (2014 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths
3,800 (2019 est.)
15,000 (2019 est.)
Languages
French (official), Sangho (lingua franca and national language), tribal languages
French (official), Lingala (a lingua franca trade language), Kingwana (a dialect of Kiswahili or Swahili), Kikongo, Tshiluba
Literacy
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 37.4%
male: 49.5%
female: 25.8% (2018)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write French, Lingala, Kingwana, or Tshiluba
total population: 77%
male: 88.5%
female: 66.5% (2016)
Major infectious diseases
degree of risk: very high (2020)
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A and E, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: malaria and dengue fever
water contact diseases: schistosomiasis
animal contact diseases: rabies
respiratory diseases: meningococcal meningitis
degree of risk: very high (2020)
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: malaria, dengue fever, and trypanosomiasis-gambiense (African sleeping sickness)
water contact diseases: schistosomiasis
animal contact diseases: rabies
note - on 18 October 2019, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a Travel Health Notice for an Ebola outbreak in the South Kivu (Kivu Sud), North Kivu (Kivu Nord), and Ituri provinces in the northeastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo; travelers to this area could be infected with Ebola if they come into contact with an infected person’s blood or other body fluids; travelers should seek medical care immediately if they develop fever, muscle pain, sore throat, diarrhea, weakness, vomiting, stomach pain, or unexplained bleeding or bruising during or after travel
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)
total: 7 years
male: 8 years
female: 6 years (2012)
total: 11 years
male: 10 years
female: 9 years (2013)
Education expenditures
1.2% of GDP (2011)
1.5% of GDP (2017)
Urbanization
urban population: 42.2% of total population (2020)
rate of urbanization: 2.52% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
urban population: 45.6% of total population (2020)
rate of urbanization: 4.53% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Drinking water source
improved: urban: 89.6% of population
rural: 54.4% of population
total: 68.5% of population
unimproved: urban: 10.4% of population
rural: 45.6% of population
total: 31.5% of population (2015 est.)
improved: urban: 84.3% of population
rural: 32.4% of population
total: 55.2% of population
unimproved: urban: 15.7% of population
rural: 67.6% of population
total: 44.8% of population (2017 est.)
Sanitation facility access
improved: urban: 43.6% of population
rural: 7.2% of population
total: 21.8% of population
unimproved: urban: 56.4% of population
rural: 92.8% of population
total: 78.2% of population (2015 est.)
improved: urban: 54.7% of population
rural: 29.8% of population
total: 40.7% of population
unimproved: urban: 44.5% of population
rural: 70.2% of population
total: 59.3% of population (2017 est.)
Major cities - population
889,000 BANGUI (capital) (2020)
14.342 million KINSHASA (capital), 2.525 million Mbuji-Mayi, 2.478 million Lubumbashi, 1.458 million Kananga, 1.261 million Kisangani, 1.078 million Bukavu (2020)
Maternal mortality rate
829 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
473 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight
20.8% (2018)
23.4% (2013)
Health expenditures
5.8% (2017)
4% (2017)
Physicians density
0.07 physicians/1,000 population (2015)
0.07 physicians/1,000 population (201)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate
7.5% (2016)
6.7% (2016)
Demographic profile

The Central African Republic’s (CAR) humanitarian crisis has worsened since a coup in March 2013. CAR’s high mortality rate and low life expectancy are attributed to elevated rates of preventable and treatable diseases (including malaria and malnutrition), an inadequate health care system, precarious food security, and armed conflict. Some of the worst mortality rates are in western CAR’s diamond mining region, which is impoverished because of government attempts to control the diamond trade and the fall in industrial diamond prices. To make matters worse, the government and international donors have reduced health funding in recent years. The CAR’s weak educational system and low literacy rate have also suffered as a result of the country’s ongoing conflict. Schools are closed, qualified teachers are scarce, infrastructure, funding, and supplies are lacking and subject to looting, and many students and teachers are displaced by violence.

Rampant poverty, human rights violations, unemployment, poor infrastructure, and a lack of security and stability have led to forced displacement internally and externally. Since the political crisis that resulted in CAR’s March 2013 coup began in December 2012, approximately 600,000 people have fled to Chad, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and other neighboring countries, while another estimated 600,000 are displaced internally as of October 2019. The UN has urged countries to refrain from repatriating CAR refugees amid the heightened lawlessness.

(2019)

Despite a wealth of fertile soil, hydroelectric power potential, and mineral resources, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) struggles with many socioeconomic problems, including high infant and maternal mortality rates, malnutrition, poor vaccination coverage, lack of access to improved water sources and sanitation, and frequent and early fertility. Ongoing conflict, mismanagement of resources, and a lack of investment have resulted in food insecurity; almost 30 percent of children under the age of 5 are malnourished. The overall coverage of basic public services – education, health, sanitation, and potable water – is very limited and piecemeal, with substantial regional and rural/urban disparities. Fertility remains high at almost 5 children per woman and is likely to remain high because of the low use of contraception and the cultural preference for larger families.

The DRC is a source and host country for refugees. Between 2012 and 2014, more than 119,000 Congolese refugees returned from the Republic of Congo to the relative stability of northwest DRC, but more than 540,000 Congolese refugees remained abroad as of year-end 2015. In addition, an estimated 3.9 million Congolese were internally displaced as of October 2017, the vast majority fleeing violence between rebel group and Congolese armed forces. Thousands of refugees have come to the DRC from neighboring countries, including Rwanda, the Central African Republic, and Burundi.

Contraceptive prevalence rate
15.2% (2010/11)
20.4% (2013/14)
Dependency ratios
total dependency ratio: 86.4
youth dependency ratio: 81.1
elderly dependency ratio: 5.2
potential support ratio: 19.2 (2020 est.)
total dependency ratio: 95.4
youth dependency ratio: 89.5
elderly dependency ratio: 5.9
potential support ratio: 17 (2020 est.)

Source: CIA Factbook