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Angola - Tips

Thu, 8 Jul 2010 00:41:48

Angola Bureau of African Affairs
July 2007

Background Note: Angola

A wholesaler makes a sale in Luanda,
Angola, September 29, 2006. [© AP

Flag of Angola is two equal horizontal bands of red (top) and black with a
centered yellow emblem consisting of a five-pointed star within half a
cogwheel crossed by a machete (in the style of a hammer and sickle).


Republic of Angola

Area: 1,246,700 sq. km. (481,400 sq. mi), about twice the size of Texas.
Cities: Capital--Luanda (pop. 4.0 million); Huambo (750,000); Benguela
Terrain: A narrow, dry coastal strip extending from the far north (Luanda) to
Namibia in the south; well-watered agricultural highlands; savanna in the far
east and south; and rain forest in the north and the enclave of Cabinda.
Climate: Tropical and tropical highland.

Nationality: Noun and adjective--Angolan(s).
Population (December 2004 est.): 13,000,000.
Annual population growth rate (2004): 2.9%.
Ethnic groups: Ovimbundu 37%, Kimbundu 25%, Bakongo 13%, mixed racial 2%,
European 1%.
Religions (2001 official est.): Roman Catholic 68%, various Protestant 20%;
indigenous beliefs 12%.
Languages: Portuguese (official), Ovimbundu, Kimbundu, Bakongo, and others.
Education: Years compulsory--8. Enrollment (2003 est.)--primary school 55%,
secondary 30%, and post-secondary 3%. Literacy (total population over 15 that
can read and write, 2002 est.)--42% (male 56%, female 28%).
Health: Life expectancy (2002 est.)--total population 46.7 years. Infant
mortality rate (2003 est.)--154/1,000.
Work force (2003 est. 5.6 million): Agriculture--85%; industry and
commerce--15%; services--6%.

Type: Republic.
Independence: November 11, 1975.
Branches: Executive--elected president (chief of state), appointed prime
minister, and 31 appointed civilian ministers and 55 vice ministers.
Legislative--elected National Assembly (223 seats). Judicial--Supreme Court
(also functions as Constitutional Court).
Administrative subdivisions: Province, municipality, commune.
Political parties: 123 with legal status; in 1992, 12 won seats in the
National Assembly. Pro-government--Popular Movement for the Liberation of
Angola (MPLA). Opposition--National Union for the Total Independence of
Angola (UNITA), Social Renewal Party (PRS), National Front for the Liberation
of Angola (FNLA), Party for Democratic Progress - Angola National Alliance
(PDP-ANA), Democratic Renewal Party (PRD), Party of the Alliance of Youth,
Workers, and Peasants (PAJOCA), Liberal Democratic Party (PLD), Democratic
Alliance (AD), Angolan Democratic Forum (FDA), Social Democratic Party (PSD),
Front for Democracy (FPD), and the Angolan National Democratic Party (PNDA).
Suffrage: Universal age 18 and over.

GDP (2006 est. using purchasing power parity): $53.9 billion.
Annual real GDP growth rate (2006 est.): 15.3%.
Per capita GDP (2006 est. using purchasing power parity): $3,399.
Avg. inflation rate (2006): 13.3%.
Natural resources: Petroleum, diamonds, iron ore, phosphates, bauxite,
uranium, gold, granite, copper, feldspar.
Agriculture: Products--bananas, sugarcane, coffee, sisal, corn, cotton,
manioc, tobacco, vegetables, plantains; livestock; forest products; fisheries
Industry: Types--petroleum drilling and refining, mining, cement, basic metal
products, fish processing, food processing, brewing, tobacco products, sugar
refining, textiles.
Trade: Exports (2006 projected)--$30.3 billion. 2006 projected exports
consisted of petroleum and derivatives (95.04%), diamonds (4.6%), coffee
(0.03%), other (0.3%), sisal, timber, cotton, fish, scrap metal. Major
markets (2004)--U.S. (37.70%), China (35.6%), France (6.4%), South Korea
(2.95%). Imports (2006 est.)--$9 billion: machinery, electrical equipment,
vehicles and spare parts, medicines, food, textiles. Major sources (2006)
--Portugal (17.1%), U.S. (9.8%), South Africa (8.0%), China (8.5%), Brazil

Angola is located on the South Atlantic Coast of West Africa between Namibia
and the Republic of the Congo. It also is bordered by the Democratic Republic
of the Congo to the north and east and Zambia to the east. The country is
divided into an arid coastal strip stretching from Namibia to Luanda; a wet,
interior highland; a dry savanna in the interior south and southeast; and
rain forest in the north and in Cabinda. The upper reaches of the Zambezi
River pass through Angola, and several tributaries of the Congo River have
their sources in Angola. The coastal strip is tempered by the cool Benguela
current, resulting in a climate similar to coastal Baja California. There is
a short rainy season lasting from February to April. Summers are hot and dry,
while winters are mild. The interior highlands have a mild climate with a
rainy season from November through April followed by a cool dry season from
May to October when overnight temperatures can fall to freezing. Elevations
generally range from 3,000 to 6,000 feet. The far north and Cabinda enjoy
rain throughout much of the year.

Estimates of Angola's population vary widely, as there has been no census
since 1970, but it is estimated at no less than 13 million. Angola has three
main ethnic groups, each speaking a Bantu language: Ovimbundu 37%, Kimbundu
25%, and Bakongo 13%. Other groups include Chokwe, Lunda, Ganguela,
Nhaneca-Humbe, Ambo, Herero, and Xindunga. In addition, mixed racial
(European and African) people amount to about 2%, with a small (1%)
population of whites, mainly ethnically Portuguese. Portuguese make up the
largest non-Angolan population, with at least 30,000 (though many native-born
Angolans can claim Portuguese nationality under Portuguese law). Portuguese
is both the official and predominant language.

In 1482, when the Portuguese first landed in what is now northern Angola,
they encountered the Kingdom of the Congo, which stretched from modern Gabon
in the north to the Kwanza River in the south. Mbanza Congo, the capital, had
a population of 50,000 people. South of this kingdom were various important
states, of which the Kingdom of Ndongo, ruled by the ngola (king), was most
significant. Modern Angola derives its name from the king of Ndongo. The
Portuguese gradually took control of the coastal strip throughout the 16th
century by a series of treaties and wars. The Dutch occupied Luanda from
1641-48, providing a boost for anti-Portuguese states. In 1648,
Brazilian-based Portuguese forces re-took Luanda and initiated a process of
military conquest of the Congo and Ndongo states that ended with Portuguese
victory in 1671. Full Portuguese administrative control of the interior did
not occur until the beginning of the 20th century.

Portugal's primary interest in Angola quickly turned to slavery. The slaving
system began early in the 16th century with the purchase from African chiefs
of people to work on sugar plantations in São Tomé, Principé, and Brazil.
Many scholars agree that by the 19th century, Angola was the largest source
of slaves not only for Brazil, but also for the Americas, including the
United States. By the end of the 19th century, a massive forced labor system
had replaced formal slavery and would continue until outlawed in 1961. It was
this forced labor that provided the basis for development of a plantation
economy and, by the mid-20th century, a major mining sector. Forced labor
combined with British financing to construct three railroads from the coast
to the interior, the most important of which was the transcontinental
Benguela railroad that linked the port of Lobito with the copper zones of the
Belgian Congo and what is now Zambia, through which it connects to Dar Es
Salaam, Tanzania.

Colonial economic development did not translate into social development for
native Angolans. The Portuguese regime encouraged white immigration,
especially after 1950, which intensified racial antagonisms. As
decolonization progressed elsewhere in Africa, Portugal, under the Salazar
and Caetano dictatorships, rejected independence and treated its African
colonies as overseas provinces. Consequently, three independence movements
emerged: the Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) led by
Agostinho Neto, with a base among Kimbundu and the mixed-race intelligentsia
of Luanda, and links to communist parties in Portugal and the East Bloc; the
National Front for the Liberation of Angola (FNLA), led by Holden Roberto
with an ethnic base in the Bakongo region of the north and links to the
United States and the Mobutu regime in Kinshasa; and the National Union for
the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA), led by Jonas Malheiro Savimbi with
an ethnic and regional base in the Ovimbundu heartland in the center of the
country and links to the People's Republic of China and apartheid South

From the early 1960s, elements of these movements fought against the
Portuguese. A 1974 coup d'etat in Portugal established a military government
that promptly ceased the war and agreed, in the Alvor Accords, to hand over
power to a coalition of the three movements. The ideological differences
between the three movements eventually led to armed conflict, with FNLA and
UNITA forces, encouraged by their respective international supporters,
attempting to wrest control of Luanda from the MPLA. The intervention of
troops from South Africa on behalf of UNITA and Zaire on behalf of the FNLA
in September and October 1975 and the MPLA's importation of Cuban troops in
November effectively internationalized the conflict. Retaining control of
Luanda, the coastal strip, and increasingly lucrative oil fields in Cabinda,
the MPLA declared independence on November 11, 1975, the day the Portuguese
abandoned the capital. UNITA and the FNLA formed a rival coalition government
based in the interior city of Huambo. Agostinho Neto became the first
president of the MPLA government that was recognized by the United Nations in
1976. Upon Neto's death from cancer in 1979, then-Planning Minister José
Eduardo dos Santos ascended to the presidency.

The FNLA's military failures led to its increasing marginalization, internal
divisions, and abandonment by international supporters. An internationalized
conventional civil war between UNITA and the MPLA continued until 1989. For
much of this time, UNITA controlled vast swaths of the interior and was
backed by U.S. resources and South African troops. Similarly, tens of
thousands of Cuban troops remained in support of the MPLA, often fighting
South Africans on the front lines. A U.S.-brokered agreement resulted in
withdrawal of foreign troops in 1989 and led to the Bicesse Accord in 1991,
which spelled out an electoral process for a democratic Angola under the
supervision of the United Nations. When UNITA's Jonas Savimbi failed to win
the first round of the presidential election in 1992 (he won 40% to dos
Santos's 49%, which meant a runoff), he called the election fraudulent and
returned to war. Another peace accord, known as the Lusaka Protocol, was
brokered in Lusaka, Zambia, and signed in 1994. This agreement, too,
collapsed into renewed conflict. The UN Security Council voted on August 28,
1997 to impose sanctions on UNITA. The Angolan military launched a massive
offensive in 1999, which destroyed UNITA's conventional capacity and
recaptured all major cities previously held by Savimbi's forces. Savimbi then
declared a return to guerrilla tactics, which continued until his death in
combat in February 2002.

On April 4, 2002, the Angolan Government and UNITA signed the Luena
Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), which formalized the de facto cease-fire
that prevailed following Savimbi's death. In accordance with the MOU, UNITA
recommitted to the peace framework in the 1994 Lusaka Protocol, returned all
remaining territory to Angolan Government control, quartered all military
personnel in predetermined locations, and relinquished all arms. In August
2002, UNITA demobilized all military personnel and in September 2002,
together with the government, reconstituted the UN-sponsored Joint Commission
to resolve all outstanding political issues under the Lusaka Protocol. On
November 21, 2002, UNITA and the government declared all outstanding issues
resolved and the Lusaka Protocol fully implemented. UN Security Council
sanctions on UNITA were lifted on December 9, 2002. UNITA and the MPLA held
their first post-war party congresses in June and December 2003,
respectively. The UNITA Congress saw the democratic transfer of power from
interim leader General Paulo Lukumba "Gato" to former UNITA representative in
Paris Isaias Henriqué Samakuva, while the MPLA Congress reaffirmed President
dos Santos' leadership of party structures. Samakuva's first 4-year term as
UNITA party president will end in 2007, and UNITA will hold a party congress
in July 2007 to decide UNITA's leader for the next 4 years.

The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Peace and
Reconciliation in Cabinda on August 1, 2006, is seen as a step toward ending
conflict in Cabinda and in bringing about greater representation for the
people of Cabinda. It follows a successful counterinsurgency campaign by the
Angolan Armed Forces (FAA), who still maintain a strong troop presence there.
The MOU rejects the notion of Cabindan independence, calls for the
demobilization and reintegration of former Front for the Liberation of the
Enclave of Cabinda (FLEC) fighters into various governmental positions, and
creates a special political and economic status for the province of Cabinda.
Many FLEC military combatants have now been integrated into the Angolan Armed
Forces, with a significant number serving in command positions. In addition,
Cabindans will be given designated numbers of vice ministerial and other
positions in the Angolan Government. Some FLEC members, who did not sign onto
the peace memorandum, continue their independence efforts through public
outreach and infrequent low-level attacks against FAA convoys and outposts.

Angola changed from a one-party Marxist-Leninist system ruled by the MPLA to
a nominal multiparty democracy following the 1992 elections, in which
President dos Santos won the first-round election with more than 49% of the
vote to Jonas Savimbi's 40%; a runoff never took place. The Constitutional
Law of 1992 establishes the broad outlines of government structure and
delineates the rights and duties of citizens. The government is based on
ordinances, decrees, and decisions issued by a president and his ministers or
through legislation produced by the National Assembly and approved by the
president. The parliament is generally subordinate to the executive.

Few opportunities exist for opposition parties to challenge MPLA dominance.
President dos Santos, following a recommendation of the Council of the
Republic, has said legislative elections will now occur in 2008, with
presidential elections to follow in 2009. A multi-party constitutional reform
process will resume following elections.

Angola is governed by a president who is assisted by a prime minister and 30
cabinet ministers, all appointed by the president. Political power is
concentrated in the presidency. The executive branch of the government is
composed of the president (head of state and government), the prime minister,
and the Council of Ministers. The Council of Ministers, composed of all
government ministers and vice ministers, meets regularly to discuss policy
issues. The president, the Council of Ministers, and individual ministers in
their areas of competence have the ability to legislate by decree.

Of the 220 deputies in the National Assembly, 130 are elected at large, and 5
are elected to represent each of the 18 provinces. The Electoral Law also
calls for the election of three additional deputies to represent citizens
living abroad; however, those positions were not filled in the 1992
elections. The ruling MPLA controls 59% of the seats.

The central government administers the country through 18 provinces.
Governors of the provinces are appointed by and serve at the pleasure of the

The legal system is based on Portuguese and customary law but is weak and
fragmented. Courts operate in only a fraction of the 164 municipalities. A
Supreme Court serves as the appellate tribunal; a Constitutional Court with
powers of judicial review has never been constituted despite statutory
authorization. Recently, the Supreme Court has acted as a Constitutional

The 27-year-long civil war ravaged the country's political and social
institutions. The government estimates that 4.7 million people were
internally displaced by the civil war. 'In March 2007, the UN High
Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and Angola jointly celebrated the end of a
5-year organized voluntary repatriation program that returned home more than
400,000 Angolan refugees. The Angolan Government estimates as many as 100,000
refugees remain outside Angola and is working to help those who wish to
return. Daily conditions of life throughout the country mirror the inadequate
administrative infrastructure as well as weak social institutions. Government
support for social institutions is often inadequate. Many hospitals are
without medicines or basic equipment, schools are without books, and public
employees often lack the basic supplies for their day-to-day work.

Principal Government Officials
President--Jose Eduardo dos Santos
Prime Minister--Fernando da Piedade Dias dos Santos "Nando"
Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs--Aguinaldo Jaime
Minister of External Affairs--João Bernardo de Miranda
Minister of the Interior--Roberto Leal Monteiro Ngongo
Minister of Finance--José Pedro de Morais
Minister of Defense--Kundi Paihama
Minister of Petroleum--Desidério da Graça Veríssimo da Costa
Minister of Planning--Ana Dias Lourenço
Ambassador to the United States--Josefina Perpetua Pitra Diakite
Permanent Representative to the United Nations--Ismael Gaspar Martins

Angola maintains an embassy in the United States at 2100-2108 16th St., NW,
Washington, DC 20009 (tel. 202-785-1156; fax 202-822-9049; web:
www.angola.org). Angola also maintains consulates in New York City (attached
to its Permanent Mission to the United Nations) at 866 UN Plaza, 48th St.,
Suite 552, New York, NY 10017 (tel. 212-233-3588, ext. 15; fax 212-980-9606;
web: http://www2.un.int/public/Angola/) and in Houston at 3040 Post Oak
Blvd., Suite 708, Houston, TX 77056 (tel. 713-212-3840; fax 713-212-3841).

Angola has a fast-growing economy largely due to a major oil boom, but it
also ranks in the bottom 10% of most socioeconomic indicators. Aside from the
oil sector and diamonds, it is recovering from 27 years of nearly continuous
warfare, corruption, and economic mismanagement. Despite abundant natural
resources, and rising per capita GDP, Angola was ranked 161 out of 177
countries on the 2006 UN Development Program's (UNDP) Human Development
Index. Subsistence agriculture sustains one-third of the population.

By contrast, the rapidly expanding petroleum industry--now producing
approximately 1.6 million barrels per day (bpd), behind only Nigeria in
Africa--accounts for 51.7% of GNP, 95% of exports, and 80% of government
revenues. Production is expected to reach 2 million barrels per day in 2008.
Oil production remains largely offshore and has few linkages with other
sectors of the economy, though a local content initiative promulgated by the
Angolan Government is pressuring oil companies to source from local

Block 15, located offshore of the enclave of Soyo, currently provides 40% of
Angola's crude oil production. ExxonMobil, through its subsidiary Esso, is
the operator with a 40% share. In 2005, Block 15's second major sub-field,
Kizomba B, came online producing at about 250,000 bpd. BP, ENI-Agip, and
Statoil are partners in the concession. Chevron operates Block 0, also in
offshore Cabinda, which provides one-quarter of Angola's crude oil
production. Its partners in Block 0 are Sonangol (the Angolan state oil
company), TotalFinaElf, and ENI-Agip. Chevron also operates Angola's first
producing deepwater section, Block 14, which started pumping in January 2000
at the rate of about 61,000 bpd.

TotalFinaElf brought the first Kwanza Basin deepwater blocks on-line with
production from its Block 17 concession that began in February 2002 and now
produces approximately 430,000 bpd, with its new Dahlia field expected to
bring the production total to close to 500,000 bpd. Both ExxonMobil and
TotalFinaElf made new discoveries in these blocks in 2005. Exploration is
ongoing in ultra-deep water concessions and in deepwater and shallow
concessions in the Namibe Basin. BP made the first significant
ultra-deepwater find in its Block 31 concession in 2002 and had reached nine
significant discoveries by the end of 2005. Marathon also drilled a
successful well in its Block 32 ultra-deep water concession. BP, which
currently does not produce oil in Angola as an operator, expects to have
production of 600,000 bpd by 2007. TotalFinaElf operates Angola's one
refinery (in Luanda) as a joint venture with Sonangol; plans for a second
refinery in Lobito with projected production of 200,000 bpd are moving
forward. There are plans to increase capacity of the Luanda refinery from
40,000 bpd to 100,000 bpd. Chevron, Sonangol, and other partners are
developing a $4-5 billion liquefied natural gas plant at Soyo.

Exports to Asian countries have grown rapidly in recent years, particularly
China. In late 2004, China's state oil company Sinopec bought into Block 18,
securing the deal by offering a $2 billion credit line to the Angolan
Government. Sinopec has also formed a partnership with Sonangol to operate
Block 3/05 (formerly Block 3/80), whose operation was transferred from Total
to Sonangol recently. Sonangol will seek to expand its operation of onshore
and shallow water blocks. This includes the northern block of Cabinda's
onshore concessions, which since the reduction in hostilities with separatist
forces is now open to exploration. Sonangol and Sinopec will also be eyeing
future concession rounds, particularly for 23 blocks in the Kwanza Basin
onshore area and the relinquished parts of Blocks 15, 17, and 18, currently
operated by Exxon, Total, and BP.

Diamonds make up most of Angola's remaining exports, with yearly production
at 6 million carats. Diamond sales reached approximately $1 billion in 2005.
Despite increased corporate ownership of diamond fields, much production is
currently in the hands of small-scale prospectors, often operating illegally.
Only eight formal sector mines are operating out of a total of 145
concessions. In June 2005, De Beers signed a $10 million prospecting contract
with the government's diamond parastatal, ending a 4-year investment dispute
between De Beers and the government. The government is making an increased
effort to register and license prospectors. Legal sales of rough diamonds may
occur only through the government's diamond-buying parastatal, although many
producers continue to bypass the system to obtain higher prices. The
government has established an export certification scheme consistent with the
"Kimberley Process" to identify legitimate production and sales. Other
mineral resources, including gold, remain largely undeveloped, though granite
and marble quarrying have begun.

In the last decade of the colonial period, Angola was a major African
agricultural exporter. Because of severe wartime conditions, including
extensive laying of landmines throughout the countryside, agricultural
activities were brought to a near standstill, and the country now imports
about half of its food. Small-scale agricultural production has increased
dramatically over the last 3 years as internally displaced persons (IDPs) are
returning to the land. Some efforts at commercial agricultural recovery have
gone forward, notably in fisheries and tropical fruits, but most of the
country's vast potential remains untapped. Coffee production, though a
fraction of its pre-1975 level, is sufficient for domestic needs and some
exports. Recently passed land reform laws will attempt to reconcile
overlapping traditional land use rights, colonial-era land claims, and recent
land grants to facilitate significant commercial agricultural development.

An economic reform effort launched in 1998 was only marginally successful in
addressing persistent fiscal mismanagement and corruption. In April 2000,
Angola started an International Monetary Fund (IMF) staff-monitored program
(SMP). The program lapsed in June 2001 over IMF concerns about lack of
adequate Angolan progress. Under the program, the Government of Angola did
succeed in unifying exchange rates and moving fuel, electricity, and water
prices closer to market rates.

In December 2002 President dos Santos named a new economic team to oversee
homegrown reform efforts. The new team succeeded in decreasing overall
government spending, rationalizing the Kwanza exchange rate, closing
regulatory loopholes allowing off-budget expenditures, and capturing all
revenues in the state budget. New procedures were implemented to track the
flow of funds between the Treasury, Banco Nacional de Angola (the central
bank), and the state-owned Banco de Poupanca e Credito, which operates the
budget. The Angolan Government adopted a new investment code. Concerns remain
about quasi-fiscal operations by the state oil company Sonangol, continued
oil-backed commercial borrowing by the Angolan Government, and inadequate
transparency and oversight in the management of public accounts. The Angolan
commercial code, financial sector law, and telecommunications law all require
substantial revision.

In its published July 2003 Article IV report, the IMF endorsed four
prerequisites to proceeding with formal negotiations: (1) disclosure of
foreign debt data; (2) timely provision of macroeconomic statistics; (3) full
implementation of the single government account at the Central Bank, and (4)
additional dialogue on oil revenue management. A December 2003 IMF staff
mission to Angola found some progress in these areas. In February 2004, the
Angolan Government and the IMF reached agreement on the steps necessary to
conclude SMP negotiations. However, the Angolan Government ended dialogue
with the IMF in February 2007.

Angola is the second-largest trading partner of the United States in
sub-Saharan Africa, largely because of its petroleum exports. U.S. exports to
Angola primarily consist of industrial goods and services--such as oilfield
equipment, mining equipment, chemicals, aircraft, and food. On December 30,
2003, President Bush approved the designation of Angola as eligible for
tariff preferences under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).

The Angolan Armed Forces, known by its Portuguese acronym FAA, are headed by
a chief of staff who reports to the civilian minister of defense. There are
three services--the army, navy, and air force. Total manpower is about
140,000. The army is by far the largest of the services with about 130,000
personnel. The navy numbers about 3,000 and operates several small patrol
craft and barges. Air force personnel total about 7,000; its equipment
includes Russian-manufactured fighters and transport planes, Bell
helicopters, and Italian trainers. The "Casa Militar," or presidential guard,
answers directly to the Office of the President and is separate from FAA
command and control structures.

From 1975 to 1989, Angola was aligned with the Soviet Union and Cuba. Since
then, it has focused on improving relationships with Western countries,
cultivating links with other Portuguese-speaking countries, and asserting its
own national interests in Central Africa through military and diplomatic
intervention. In 1993, it established formal diplomatic relations with the
United States. It has entered the Southern African Development Community as a
vehicle for improving ties with its largely anglophone neighbors to the
south. In 1997, Zimbabwe and Namibia joined Angola in its military
intervention in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where Angolan troops
fought in support of the Laurent and Joseph Kabila governments. It also has
intervened in the Republic of the Congo (Brazzaville) in support of President
Sassou-Nguesso. Angola has also engaged in a more robust economic
relationship with the People's Republic of China. The P.R.C. has extended a
U.S. $2 billion credit line to Angola.

Multilaterally, Angola has promoted the revival of the Community of
Portuguese-Speaking Countries (CPLP) as a forum for cultural exchange and a
means of expanding ties with Portugal and Brazil. During the peace process,
the government fully cooperated with the UN Mission in Angola (UNMA), which
concluded its mandate in mid-February 2003. Angola concluded a 2-year term on
the UN Security Council in December 2004. In June 2007, it began a 3-year
term on the Human Rights Council.

The United States established formal diplomatic relations with the Government
of Angola in 1993. Before 1989, U.S.-Angolan relations were defined by the
Cold War. The United States initially supported Holden Roberto's FNLA and
later Jonas Savimbi's UNITA against the pro-Soviet and pro-Cuban MPLA
government in Luanda. Since 1992, the bilateral relationship has steadily
improved. In May 2004, President dos Santos met with President Bush during an
official visit to Washington.

The U.S. Mission in Angola consists of four agencies--the Department of
State, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the Department
of Defense, and the Department of Health and Human Services' Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention (HHS/CDC). In addition, a variety of federal
agencies maintain relationships with the Angolan Government through ongoing
projects, including the Federal Aviation Administration, the Department of
Transportation, the Department of Commerce, and the Department of Energy. In
FY 2005, U.S. Government assistance amounted to roughly $62.8 million.

'In FY 2006, USAID's Food for Peace office provided $3.5 million in food
inputs that were made available to the World Food Program for nutrition
support to populations in the most food insecure and vulnerable provinces,
and for returning refugees. This level of support continued a phased
reduction, which as recently as FY 2005 amounted to $30.7 million, consistent
with Angola's rapidly improving ability to produce its own food through
improved access to land and markets as well as the settlement of formerly
displaced people. Food for Peace assistance will be discontinued in FY 2007.

USAID's development program in Angola in FY 2007 is consistent with the
'country's status as a developing country at a pivotal juncture in its
development and reconstruction. In FY 2006, the program budget was $25.5
million and focused on: civil society strengthening, improved governance, and
democratization; market-oriented economic analysis and economic reform
policy; agricultural sector productivity; maternal and child health; HIV/AIDS
prevention, education and voluntary counseling'; and workforce development.
Angola also launched a major program to fight malaria through the President's
Malaria Initiative (PMI). The Governing Justly and Democratically objective
strengthens constituencies and institutions required for democratic
governance by strengthening civil society organizations and promoting local
government decentralization; fostering an independent media, government
transparency, accountability, and capability, and improved dialogue between
citizens and government; and laying the groundwork for free and fair
elections. The Investing in People objective aims to improve maternal and
child health and prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases
by helping communities and institutions to provide necessary health services
and to conduct HIV/AIDS prevention programs. The PMI is the largest health
program and expands efforts to scale up proven preventive and treatment
interventions toward achievement of 85% coverage among vulnerable groups and
50% reduction in morbidity due to malaria. The Economic Growth objective
fosters economic policy and financial sector reform; credit access for
micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises; and expanded trade and

Emergency support from HHS/CDC was provided to address the 2005 Marburg virus
outbreak in northern Angola, with assistance from the USAID Mission. CDC
personnel joined with the World Health Organization (WHO) as part of the
international response to assist with epidemiologic investigation, infection
control, and laboratory diagnosis. CDC personnel in Atlanta provided
laboratory and scientific support to Angola's Ministry of Health and to
countries bordering Angola, establishing a field laboratory in Luanda, Angola
to provide prompt laboratory confirmation of suspect Marburg cases in Angola
and neighboring countries. Additional HIV/AIDS funding for the country of
just over $2 million from HHS/CDC is also available, and helped expand
surveillance, information systems, laboratory, and blood bank quality

On February 19, 2006, the Provincial Government of Luanda declared a cholera
outbreak, in coordination with the WHO. What began as a localized outbreak of
cholera in Luanda rapidly spread around Angola, with cases detected in seven
provinces and mortality rates as high as 15% in certain areas. Causes of this
rapid expansion included poor sanitation and a lack of potable water (70% of
the country was without access), which were compounded by a series of heavy
rains in March 2006 and April 2006. Limited stocks of available medical
supplies were rapidly depleted, and the UN stressed the need for immediate,
widespread assistance. The U.S. Ambassador determined April 19, 2006 that an
adequate response was beyond the capacity of the Angolan Government, and
through this disaster declaration requested U.S. Government assistance to
support the international response and contain the spread of the outbreak.
USAID's response was to provide $50,000 for immediate relief needs. As of
January 23, 2007, a total number of 70,396 cumulative cases and 2,799 deaths
were reported in 16 out of the 18 provinces, since the beginning of the
outbreak. Following torrential rains in January 2007, the Chief of Mission,
in response to an emergency declared by the Government of Angola, determined
that U.S. Government assistance was needed to support the government and
efforts of international agencies to mitigate the effects of flooding in the
capital, Luanda. As a result, USAID's Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance
released $70,000 to provide emergency relief for families displaced by the

To assist with economic reform, in FY 2007 the State Department provided $2.2
million to work on land tenure, economic policy, and the financial sector. An
additional $143,000 in grants was provided to community development projects
and non-governmental organization (NGO)-sponsored democracy and human rights
projects. $152,000 in International Military Education and Training (IMET)
funds was provided for English language training to the Angolan Armed Forces.
Professional training for law enforcement personnel at the International Law
Enforcement Academy (ILEA) in Gaborone, Botswana continued. The Safe Skies
for Africa program provided around $800,000 in equipment and training to the
Angolan civil aviation authority. As part of its public diplomacy program,
the Embassy provided nearly $434,000 in English language training,
educational exchanges and fellowships, and information resource services. The
State Department provided $6 million for ongoing demining projects throughout
the country. These projects have played a major role in opening critical road
networks and increasing access in those areas of the country most impacted by

At the same time, the energy-based U.S. trading relationship continues to
expand and spark other ties. One offshoot has been the development of a
Sister City relationship between Lafayette, Louisiana and Cabinda and between
Houston, Texas and Luanda. The Catholic University of Luanda has close links
with a number of American institutions and has received support from the
Angola Educational Assistance Fund, a U.S. non-profit organization organized
by Citizens Energy of Boston. Sonangol has a longstanding program of
educating its professionals in U.S. universities, complementing Chevron's
policy of U.S. training for its own growing pool of Angolan professionals.
Long before oil was discovered, American missionary efforts from the early
19th century established several Protestant churches in the interior, which
also provided much of the schooling that was available in rural colonial
Angola; those historical links now are being revived with exchanges in both

Principal U.S. Officials
Ambassador--Cynthia G. Efird
Deputy Chief of Mission--Francisco Fernandez
USAID Director-Susam Brems (arrival July 2007)
Defense Attaché--LTC. Chris Grieg

The U.S. Embassy is located at Rua Houari Boumedienne No. 32, Miramar,
Luanda, Angola. International mail: Caixa Postal 6484, Luanda, Angola; Pouch:
Department of State, 2550 Luanda Place, Washington, DC 20521-2550; telephone:
(244) (222) 64-1000; fax: (244) (222) 64-1232.

The U.S. Department of State's Consular Information Program advises Americans
traveling and residing abroad through Consular Information Sheets, Public
Announcements, and Travel Warnings. Consular Information Sheets exist for all
countries and include information on entry and exit requirements, currency
regulations, health conditions, safety and security, crime, political
disturbances, and the addresses of the U.S. embassies and consulates abroad.
Public Announcements are issued to disseminate information quickly about
terrorist threats and other relatively short-term conditions overseas that
pose significant risks to the security of American travelers. Travel Warnings
are issued when the State Department recommends that Americans avoid travel
to a certain country because the situation is dangerous or unstable.

For the latest security information, Americans living and traveling abroad
should regularly monitor the Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet
web site at http://www.travel.state.gov, where the current Worldwide Caution,
Public Announcements, and Travel Warnings can be found. Consular Affairs
Publications, which contain information on obtaining passports and planning a
safe trip abroad, are also available at http://www.travel.state.gov. For
additional information on international travel, see http://www.usa.gov/

The Department of State encourages all U.S citizens who traveling or residing
abroad to register via the State Department's travel registration website or
at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate abroad. Registration will make your
presence and whereabouts known in case it is necessary to contact you in an
emergency and will enable you to receive up-to-date information on security

Emergency information concerning Americans traveling abroad may be obtained
by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the U.S. and Canada or the regular
toll line 1-202-501-4444 for callers outside the U.S. and Canada.

The National Passport Information Center (NPIC) is the U.S. Department of
State's single, centralized public contact center for U.S. passport
information. Telephone: 1-877-4USA-PPT (1-877-487-2778). Customer service
representatives and operators for TDD/TTY are available Monday-Friday, 7:00
a.m. to 12:00 midnight, Eastern Time, excluding federal holidays.

Travelers can check the latest health information with the U.S. Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia. A hotline at 877-FYI-TRIP
(877-394-8747) and a web site at http://www.cdc.gov/travel/index.htm give the
most recent health advisories, immunization recommendations or requirements,
and advice on food and drinking water safety for regions and countries. A
booklet entitled "Health Information for International Travel" (HHS
publication number CDC-95-8280) is available from the U.S. Government
Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402, tel. (202) 512-1800.

Further Electronic Information
Department of State Web Site. Available on the Internet at http://
www.state.gov, the Department of State web site provides timely, global
access to official U.S. foreign policy information, including Background
Notes and daily press briefings along with the directory of key officers of
Foreign Service posts and more. The Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC)
provides security information and regional news that impact U.S. companies
working abroad through its website http://www.osac.gov

Export.gov provides a portal to all export-related assistance and market
information offered by the federal government and provides trade leads, free
export counseling, help with the export process, and more.
STAT-USA/Internet, a service of the U.S. Department of Commerce, provides
authoritative economic, business, and international trade information from
the Federal government. The site includes current and historical
trade-related releases, international market research, trade opportunities,
and country analysis and provides access to the National Trade Data Bank. ***********************************************************
See http://www.state.gov/r/pa/bgn/ for all Background notes
To change your subscription, go to http://www.state.gov/misc/echannels/66822.htm Angola

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