The Republic of South Africa is a country located at the southern tip of the continent of Africa. The South African coast stretches 2,798 kilometres and borders both the Atlantic and Indian oceans. To the north of South Africa lie Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Swaziland, while the Kingdom of Lesotho is an independent enclave surrounded by South African territory.
Official Name: Republic of South Africa
Short Form: South Africa
Country Calling Code: +27
Capital City: Pretoria (administrative), Bloemfontein (Mangaung) (judicial center), Cape Town (legislative center)
Other Cities: Johannesburg, Durban, Nelspruit Polokwane, Port Elizabeth
Government Type: Republic
Independence: 31 May 1910 (from UK); South Africa became a republic in 1961.
Nationality: South African(s).
Population: (2011) 50.5 million;
Ethnic Gorups: Black 78%; white 10%; colored 9%; Asian (Indian) 2.5%; other.
Languages: (11 official languages) Sesotho sa Leboa 9.2%, Sesotho, Setswana, siSwati (Swazi), Tshivenda, Xitsonga, Afrikaans 14,4%, English 8.6%, isiNdebele, isiXhosa 17.9%, isiZulu 22.9%.
Religions: Predominantly Christian; traditional African believes, Hindu, Muslim, Jewish.
Natural Resources: South Africa is rich of natural resources: Gold, chromium, antimony, coal, iron ore, manganese, nickel, phosphates, tin, uranium, gem diamonds, platinum, copper, vanadium, salt, natural gas.
Agriculture Products: Corn, wheat, sugarcane, fruits, vegetables; beef, poultry, mutton, wool, dairy products.
Industries: Mining (world’s largest producer of platinum, gold, chromium), automobile assembly, metalworking, machinery, textile, iron and steel, chemicals, fertilizer, foodstuffs.
Currency: South African Rand (ZAR)
Source: www.nationsonline.org/Africa; www.bbc.com/ South Africa Profile; other.