Africa

5 things I didn’t know about Guinea-Bissau

I’ve been asked to look into Guinea-Bissau for work (no, I’m not getting shipped there any time soon) and here is what I found…

1. It’s a country which borders Senegal and Guinea. It was named Guinea-Bissau so people wouldn’t get it mixed up with Guinea, which was named Guinea-Conakry so people wouldn’t get it mixed up with the other Guinea. Hmm…

2. The capital is Bissau. Very original…

3. It used to be a Portuguese colony but less than a quarter of the population actually speak Portuguese. Eh?! The majority speak Crioulo/Kriol which is a Portuguese-based creole language.

4. The country is larger in size than Taiwan, Belgium and Maryland (U.S. state). The land is mostly savanna and Guinean mangroves by the coast. Note: Guinean mangroves are no different to normal mangroves. It is just an expression for the mangroves on the coast of West Africa.

5. Slave trading was quite prominent (main economic activity) in this part of the world between the 16th and 19th century. Guinea-Bissau was part of, whats known as The Slave Coast, which consists of Togo, Benin and West Nigeria. Estimates of 2 to 3 million slaves were exported out of this region and were traded for alcohol and tobacco from the Americas and textiles from Europe.

[Source: Various Wiki sources]

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4 thoughts on “5 things I didn’t know about Guinea-Bissau

  1. “It was named Guinea-Bissau so people wouldn’t get it mixed up with Guinea, which was named Guinea-Conakry so people wouldn’t get it mixed up with the other Guinea” – why did they not just call it Bissau? Or something totally different?

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