In 2003, Botswana was a small African nation located in southern Africa. It was bordered by South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, and Zambia. Its economy was mainly based on mining, tourism, and services. Infrastructure was in need of improvement throughout the country with education levels being quite low. Unemployment had decreased since the 1990s but still remained relatively high in certain areas. According to computergees, the government at this time was stable with a strong commitment to democracy and free-market capitalism. Foreign investment had increased significantly in recent years due to Botswana’s favorable business climate and proximity to major markets such as South Africa. Tourism also played a major role in driving economic growth due to its diverse landscapes, vibrant culture, and abundance of wildlife attractions. Gaborone had become one of the most important cities in Africa at this time and had attracted many international businesses looking for a base of operations within the region.
Botswana. At the beginning of the year, Botswana received large numbers of refugees from neighboring Zimbabwe, which were haunted by famine and regime repression. The Botswana authorities regarded the refugees as illegal immigrants, gathered them in camps and sent them back across the border.
According to Countryaah.com, Botswana Independence Day is September 30. Botswana gained international attention when US President George W. Bush during his tour of Africa in July made a short visit to the country. Prior to Bush’s visit, Botswana had agreed to grant Americans immunity from prosecution in the International Criminal Court ICC, thus avoiding the country being subject to US sanctions.
The difficult AIDS situation was the focus during Bush’s visit. Botswana is estimated to have the world’s highest proportion of HIV-infected, close to 40% of the adult population. According to the World Health Organization, a 15-year-old Botswana boy runs a 90% risk of suffering from AIDS and dying prematurely. The costs of combating AIDS, along with drought and reduced income from the mining industry, were expected to cause a sharp budget deficit for 2004. Microsoft founder Bill Gates partially funds Botswana’s free HIV medication program for the infected.
During the year, Botswana was recognized by the World Economic Forum (WEF) as the least corrupt country in Africa.
Republic of Botswana Brief Guide
According to AbbreviationFinder, Botswana is a landlocked state in southern Africa. Its neighbors are Namibia to the west, Zambia to the north, Zimbabwe to the east, and South Africa to the south. The land formation of the country is dominated by the vastly large Kalahari Desert, which covers about 84 percent of the country’s land area and is about 1,100 meters above sea level.
Food & beverage
African food is quite simple but tasty and spicy. A lot of different vegetables, fruits and cereals are used. Examples used are tomatoes, peppers, onions, okra, sweet potatoes, yams, cassava, corn, bananas, mangoes, papayas and citrus fruits. Popular spices include basil, coriander, cumin, cloves, cinnamon, ginger and chili. Botswana’s tap water is not potable. All water and beverages must be industrially bottled. Salads and vegetables should also be rinsed with bottled water. Heated or tablet-purified water can be drunk
We stay in safe areas during our trip, but general caution within common sense is desirable throughout the trip.
Botswana Customs Regulations
Take pictures only! The Botswana government protects its nature and it is therefore illegal to import alien plants / animals or to export monuments collected from nature, such as stones, feathers, plants, bones and seeds. Botswana customs are carrying out spot checks at their borders.