See abbreviationfinder for geography, history, society, politics, and economy of Angola. Angolan refugees began returning in June from refugee camps in Zambia. Acc. organization is expected to return another 50,000 refugees in the course of 2004. The refugee organization acknowledged that repatriation was a major challenge, because the roads between the two countries were in a miserable constitution, bridges had sprung up and areas were mined. Together with the Government of Angola and the International Organization for Migration (OIM), the organization set up alternative routes, improving some of the roads and approaching refugees by plane. The refugees were received in the border town of Cazombo, where they were examined for AIDS/HIV and, if necessary, came under treatment. They also came under treatment for damage they had received from land mines. UNHCR provided food, clothing, seed,
After being halted by 3 decades of civil war, the trans-African Bengeula railroad was back on track. The railway line is 1334 km long and runs from the port city of Lobito in Angola to Zambia. It was an important artery for trade in the region at the time, and observers pointed out that its reopening could play a major role in Angola’s ailing economy and contribute to increased exports of corn, cereals, cotton, coffee, sugar and cattle. The reopening of the course had been hampered first and foremost by the large number of land mines. Angola is already Africa’s most densely mined country.
Thousands of people walked the streets of Cabinda in February 2005 demanding autonomy. It was the first permitted demonstration in the province at all. A local human rights group reported that the government continues to abuse civilians in the province. It is rich in oil and has a local liberation movement, FLEC, which fights for independence.
In March 2005, it emerged that over the previous 3 months, nearly 100 Angolans had died in the northern part of the country from the so-called Marburg virus. The disease especially affects children under the age of 5 and is akin to the dreaded Ebola virus. In early 2006, several provinces were affected by cholera that killed over four months over 1,000 people. Alone in Launda died 167.
In April, Cabinda National Petroleum Plc. to handle oil and gas extraction licenses and operations in the “area controlled by Cabinda’s Security Forces”. Oil extraction on the coast of Cabinda was responsible for about half of Angola’s revenue. But according to. Oil experts find the majority of the province’s oil resources in the underground on the mainland, but it has not been exploited so far due to security concerns. Although internationally regarded as part of Angola, Cabinda was autonomous during the colonial period and was first occupied by Angolan troops at the end of the colonial period.
The Cabinda government and separatist groups signed a peace agreement in August. However, not all groups were included in the agreement. Some were excluded and the agreement was also criticized by various sectors of Angola. UNITA immediately published a communication pointing out that if a “lasting solution” is to be achieved, it must include all active forces in Angola. The agreement gave Cabinda a “special status” within the framework of the Angolan constitution, which is centralized.
In February 2007, President José Dos Santos announced that parliamentary elections will be held in 2008 and presidential elections in 2009.
Dos Santos was the MPLA’s top candidate in the September 2008 parliamentary elections. The party got a landslide victory with 81.6% of the vote. UNITA declined dramatically and had to settle for 10.4% of the vote. The presidential election was postponed to 2010 because the president wanted a new constitution passed first.
The global crisis that erupted in the fall of 2008 hit Angola hard. Crude oil prices fell from US $ 147 per share. barrel in July to US $ 44 in December. Shortly after the outbreak of the crisis, dos Santos visited China, where he met President Hu Jintao and Prime Minister Wen Jiabao. At the meetings, Dos Santos requested Chinese investment worth $ 1 billion. US $ in Angola’s infrastructure – especially the construction of housing and running water infrastructure. China has already invested $ 5-7 billion US $ in Angola in exchange for Angolan oil. Despite the decline in oil prices, Angola overtook Nigeria as the largest sub-Saharan oil producer. Oil exports were the main reason for the country’s 25% economic growth rate and growing illegal immigration from West Africa. In December Angola joined LNG Ltd. a contract with Acergy SA worth $ 250 million US $ on the construction of offshore pipelines to connect 5 offshore gas fields to the Angola LNG facility in Soyo.