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Botswana

Yearbook 2018

Botswana. According to Countryaah.com, Botswana's maize harvest became very poor after a few years of severe drought. At the same time, some parts of the country were affected by abnormal rainfall with floods. According to the authorities, climate change has made the rain unpredictable, and many farmers consider it unprofitable to prepare the land and so its maize. The government appropriated close to SEK 800 million to remedy the grain shortage and support farmers in crisis.

2018 Botswana

There was debate during the year about threats to the elephant tribe in Botswana, the country in Africa that was considered safest for elephants. President Ian Khama accused US Donald Trump of encouraging elephant hunting by lifting a ban on importing wild trophies into the US, including elephant grazing.

In April, Khama resigned and was succeeded by Vice President Mokgweetsi Masisi. He decided that game keepers would no longer carry military weapons in action against poachers. Several casualties had been claimed when Namibians and Zimbabweans in the border areas were mistaken for poachers. But critics said that disarmament enabled increased poaching.

In September, the organization Elephants Without Borders stated that they found about 90 elephants killed, a sharp increase from previous years. According to the government, the figure was exaggerated.

In June, Parliament decided to revise the ban on hunting wild game, as farmers in the wild northwest receive their harvests destroyed by elephant herds. Botswana's elephant strain is estimated by game keepers to be around 130,000 animals, but according to the government, the figure may be close to 230,000.

Botswana got its youngest minister so far this year when 30-year-old Bogolo Joy Kenewendo was appointed Minister of Trade and Industry. She has founded a leadership program for women, inspired by a forum for young African women in which Michelle Obama participated.

The dominant diamond industry fell back in the first half of the year, and unemployment was high, officially 20% among young people. Assessors considered the actual figure to be higher.

President Masisi visited Beijing in September and was promised multi-billion-dollar loans and assistance to Botswana for the construction of railways and other infrastructure. Chinese companies, mainly state-owned, are intensively active in road construction and dam construction, and more in Botswana. The loans are expected to finance new railways from central Botswana to the tourist center in the northwest and to a bridge across the Zambezi River into Zambia.

Botswana's birth rates are declining faster than in almost every other country in the world. New figures show that Botswana women on average give birth to 2.68 children, compared to seven children half a century ago.

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