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Guinea-Bissau Demographics Profile

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1,927,104 (July 2020 est.)
Age structure
0-14 years: 43.17% (male 417,810/female 414,105)
15-24 years: 20.38% (male 192,451/female 200,370)
25-54 years: 30.24% (male 275,416/female 307,387)
55-64 years: 3.12% (male 29,549/female 30,661)
65 years and over: 3.08% (male 25,291/female 34,064) (2020 est.)
Dependency ratios
total dependency ratio: 81.2
youth dependency ratio: 76
elderly dependency ratio: 5.2
potential support ratio: 19.1 (202 est.)
Median age
total: 18 years
male: 17.4 years
female: 18.6 years (2020 est.)
Population growth rate
2.51% (2020 est.)
Birth rate
36.9 births/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Death rate
7.9 deaths/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Net migration rate
-3.8 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2020 est.)
urban population: 44.2% of total population (2020)
rate of urbanization: 3.41% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Major cities - population
600,000 BISSAU (capital) (2020)
Sex ratio
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 0.96 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.9 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.74 male(s)/female
total population: 95.3 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
Infant mortality rate
total: 51.9 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 57.9 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 45.7 deaths/1,000 live births (2020 est.)
Life expectancy at birth
total population: 62.8 years
male: 60.6 years
female: 65.1 years (2020 est.)
Total fertility rate
4.75 children born/woman (2020 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate
16% (2014)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate
3.4% (2019 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS
40,000 (2019 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths
1,500 (2019 est.)
Drinking water source
improved: urban: 91.2% of population
rural: 60.3% of population
total: 73.5% of population
unimproved: urban: 8.5% of population
rural: 39.7% of population
total: 26.5% of population (2017 est.)
Sanitation facility access
improved: urban: 66.5% of population
rural: 13.4% of population
total: 36.2% of population
unimproved: urban: 33.5% of population
rural: 86.6% of population
total: 63.8% of population (2017 est.)
Major infectious diseases
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 yellow fever
water contact diseases: schistosomiasis
animal contact diseases: rabies
noun: Bissau-Guinean(s)
adjective: Bissau-Guinean
Ethnic groups
Fulani 28.5%, Balanta 22.5%, Mandinga 14.7%, Papel 9.1%, Manjaco 8.3%, Beafada 3.5%, Mancanha 3.1%, Bijago 2.1%, Felupe 1.7%, Mansoanca 1.4%, Balanta Mane 1%, other 1.8%, none 2.2% (2008 est.)
Muslim 45.1%, Christian 22.1%, animist 14.9%, none 2%, unspecified 15.9% (2008 est.)
Demographic profile

Guinea-Bissau’s young and growing population is sustained by high fertility; approximately 60% of the population is under the age of 25. Its large reproductive-age population and total fertility rate of more than 4 children per woman offsets the country’s high infant and maternal mortality rates. The latter is among the world’s highest because of the prevalence of early childbearing, a lack of birth spacing, the high percentage of births outside of health care facilities, and a shortage of medicines and supplies.

Guinea-Bissau’s history of political instability, a civil war, and several coups (the latest in 2012) have resulted in a fragile state with a weak economy, high unemployment, rampant corruption, widespread poverty, and thriving drug and child trafficking. With the country lacking educational infrastructure, school funding and materials, and qualified teachers, and with the cultural emphasis placed on religious education, parents frequently send boys to study in residential Koranic schools (daaras) in Senegal and The Gambia. They often are extremely deprived and are forced into street begging or agricultural work by marabouts (Muslim religious teachers), who enrich themselves at the expense of the children. Boys who leave their marabouts often end up on the streets of Dakar or other large Senegalese towns and are vulnerable to even worse abuse.

Some young men lacking in education and job prospects become involved in the flourishing international drug trade. Local drug use and associated violent crime are growing.

Crioulo (lingua franca), Portuguese (official; largely used as a second or third language), Pular (a Fula language), Mandingo
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 59.9%
male: 71.8%
female: 48.3% (2015)
Education expenditures
2.1% of GDP (2013)
Maternal mortality rate
667 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight
17% (2014)
Health expenditures
7.2% (2017)
Physicians density
0.13 physicians/1,000 population (2016)
Hospital bed density
1 beds/1,000 population (2009)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate
9.5% (2016)

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on Friday, November 27, 2020

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