Mozambique, which gained independence from Portugal in 1975, is still suffering from the effects of a 16-year civil war that ended in 1992.
Tensions remain between the ruling Frelimo party and the opposition former rebel movement Renamo and corruption has become a major concern.
The discovery of gas fields off Mozambique’s coast in 2011 is set to transform the economy of one of Africa’s poorest nations.
But despite recent economic growth, more than half of Mozambique’s 24 million people continue to live below the poverty line.
- The Republic of Mozambique
- Capital: Maputo
- Population 24.5 million
- Area 812,379 sq km (313,661 sq miles)
- Languages Portuguese (official), several indigenous languages, including Makhuwa
- Major religions Christianity, indigenous beliefs, Islam
- Life expectancy 50 years (men), 52 years (women)
- Currency metical