Bosnia and Herzegovina



Official Country Name
Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnia and Herzegovina Overview
Bosnia and Herzegovina's declaration of sovereignty in October 1991 was followed by a declaration of independence from the former Yugoslavia on 3 March 1992 after a referendum boycotted by ethnic Serbs. The Bosnian Serbs - supported by neighboring Serbia and Montenegro - responded with armed resistance aimed at partitioning the republic along ethnic lines and joining Serb-held areas to form a "Greater Serbia." In March 1994, Bosniaks and Croats reduced the number of warring factions from three to two by signing an agreement creating a joint Bosniak/Croat Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. On 21 November 1995, in Dayton, Ohio, the warring parties initialed a peace agreement that brought to a halt three years of interethnic civil strife (the final agreement was signed in Paris on 14 December 1995). The Dayton Peace Accords retained Bosnia and Herzegovina's international boundaries and created a joint multi-ethnic and democratic government charged with conducting foreign, diplomatic, and fiscal policy. Also recognized was a second tier of government comprised of two entities roughly equal in size: the Bosniak/Croat Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Bosnian Serb-led Republika Srpska (RS). The Federation and RS governments were charged with overseeing most government functions. The Office of the High Representative (OHR) was established to oversee the implementation of the civilian aspects of the agreement. In 1995-96, a NATO-led international peacekeeping force (IFOR) of 60,000 troops served in Bosnia to implement and monitor the military aspects of the agreement. IFOR was succeeded by a smaller, NATO-led Stabilization Force (SFOR) whose mission was to deter renewed hostilities. European Union peacekeeping troops (EUFOR) replaced SFOR in December 2004; their mission is to maintain peace and stability throughout the country. EUFOR plans to phase out its mission beginning in 2007.

Bosnia and Herzegovina Economy
Bosnia and Herzegovina ranked next to Macedonia as the poorest republic in the old Yugoslav federation. Although agriculture is almost all in private hands, farms are small and inefficient, and the republic traditionally is a net importer of food. Industry remains greatly overstaffed, a holdover from the socialist economic structure of Yugoslavia. TITO had pushed the development of military industries in the republic with the result that Bosnia was saddled with a host of industrial firms with little commercial potential. The interethnic warfare in Bosnia caused production to plummet by 80% from 1992 to 1995 and unemployment to soar. With an uneasy peace in place, output recovered in 1996-99 at high percentage rates from a low base; but output growth slowed in 2000-02. Part of the lag in output was made up in 2003-06. National-level statistics are limited and do not capture the large share of black market activity. The konvertibilna marka (convertible mark or BAM)- the national currency introduced in 1998 - is pegged to the euro, and confidence in the currency and the banking sector has increased. Implementation of privatization, however, has been slow, and local entities only reluctantly support national-level institutions. Banking reform accelerated in 2001 as all the Communist-era payments bureaus were shut down; foreign banks, primarily from Western Europe, now control most of the banking sector. A sizeable current account deficit and high unemployment rate remain the two most serious economic problems. The country receives substantial amounts of reconstruction assistance and humanitarian aid from the international community but will have to prepare for an era of declining assistance.

Bosnia and Herzegovina Location
Bosnia and Herzegovina is located in Southeastern Europe, bordering the Adriatic Sea and Croatia

Region
Bosnia and Herzegovina is located in Europe

Bosnia and Herzegovina Population
Bosnia and Herzegovina has population of 4,498,976 (July 2006 est.)

Bosnia and Herzegovina Climate
Bosnia and Herzegovina has hot summers and cold winters; areas of high elevation have short, cool summers and long, severe winters; mild, rainy winters along coast

Bosnia and Herzegovina Terrain
mountains and valleys

Bosnia and Herzegovina Natural Resources
coal, iron ore, bauxite, copper, lead, zinc, chromite, cobalt, manganese, nickel, clay, gypsum, salt, sand, forests, hydropower

Ethnic Groups in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina has the following ethnic groups - Bosniak 48%, Serb 37.1%, Croat 14.3%, other 0.6% (2000) note: Bosniak has replaced Muslim as an ethnic term in part to avoid confusion with the religious term Muslim - an adherent of Islam

Bosnia and Herzegovina Religions
Muslim 40%, Orthodox 31%, Roman Catholic 15%, other 14%

Bosnia and Herzegovina Languages
Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian

Bosnia and Herzegovina Capital
Bosnia and Herzegovina capital is Sarajevo

Bosnia and Herzegovina Currency
Bosnia and Herzegovina currency is marka

Map of Bosnia and Herzegovina