uinea-Bissau is a tiny country on the west coast ofAfrica, about half the size of Scotland. It added theword Bissau to its name so it would not be confusedwith another African country called
uinea. Bissau is its capital.It has a tropical climate with rain for 6 months and a dry season for6 months. It is a lowland country, gradually becoming higher inland.
uinea-Bissau is the sixth largest producer of cashew nuts in theworld, quite an achievement for a tiny country. Cashew nuts are quiteexpensive for us to buy but unfortunately farmers there get verylittle money for growing them. So the people are generally very poorand the government is very poor, as it has little else to export toother countries.This means people are too poor to afford landline phones or mobilesand the government cannot afford to install many. There are only20,000 telephone lines in the whole country.Many of the telephone lines that the country did have weredestroyed in a war ten years ago. The country is still trying to repairall the damage done. With very few telephones it is unlikely thatmany companies will set up here, which means the country will loseout on jobs and money.Many skilled engineers left the country during the war and only nowdo they think it is safe enough to return. Three mobile phonecompanies have just set up in
uinea-Bissau and provide coverage of90% of the country. So the telephone system is improving but it isstill very expensive for people to make phone calls.