Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

 
Central Intelligence Agency
The Work of a Nation. The Center of Intelligence
Africa :: Eritrea
page last updated on May 7, 2013
(CONTAINS DESCRIPTION)
Location of Eritrea
Click flag or map to enlarge Opens in New Window
 
Click map to enlarge Opens in New Window
Photos of Eritrea
 
Navigation Arrow view 2 photos Opens in New Window
of Eritrea
Expand All | collapse All
Introduction ::Eritrea
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
The UN established Eritrea as an autonomous region within the Ethiopian federation in 1952. Ethiopia's full annexation of Eritrea as a province 10 years later sparked a violent 30-year struggle for independence that ended in 1991 with Eritrean rebels defeating government forces. Eritreans overwhelmingly approved independence in a 1993 referendum. ISAIAS Afworki has been Eritrea's only president since independence; his rule, particularly since 2001, has been highly autocratic and repressive. His government has created a highly militarized society by pursuing an unpopular program of mandatory conscription into national service, sometimes of indefinite length. A two-and-a-half-year border war with Ethiopia that erupted in 1998 ended under UN auspices in December 2000. The Eritrea-Ethiopia Boundary Commission (EEBC) created in April 2003 was tasked "to delimit and demarcate the colonial treaty border based on pertinent colonial treaties (1900, 1902, and 1908) and applicable international law." Eritrea for several years hosted a UN peacekeeping operation that monitored a 25 km-wide Temporary Security Zone. The EEBC on 30 November 2007 remotely demarcated the border, assigning the town of Badme to Eritrea, despite Ethiopia's maintaining forces there from the time of the 1998-2000 war. An increasingly hostile Eritrea insisted that the UN terminate its peacekeeping mission on 31 July 2008. Eritrea has accepted the EEBC's "virtual demarcation" decision and repeatedly called on Ethiopia to remove its troops. Ethiopia has not accepted the demarcation decision, and neither party has entered into meaningful dialogue to resolve the impasse. Eritrea is subject to several UN Security Council Resolutions (from 2009, 2011, and 2012) imposing various military and economic sanctions, in view of evidence that it has supported armed opposition groups in the region.
Back to Top
Geography ::Eritrea
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Eastern Africa, bordering the Red Sea, between Djibouti and Sudan
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
15 00 N, 39 00 E
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total: 117,600 sq km
country comparison to the world: 101
land: 101,000 sq km
water: 16,600 sq km
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
slightly larger than Pennsylvania
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total: 1,626 km
border countries: Djibouti 109 km, Ethiopia 912 km, Sudan 605 km
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
2,234 km (mainland on Red Sea 1,151 km, islands in Red Sea 1,083 km)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
territorial sea: 12 nm
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
hot, dry desert strip along Red Sea coast; cooler and wetter in the central highlands (up to 61 cm of rainfall annually, heaviest June to September); semiarid in western hills and lowlands
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
dominated by extension of Ethiopian north-south trending highlands, descending on the east to a coastal desert plain, on the northwest to hilly terrain and on the southwest to flat-to-rolling plains
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
lowest point: near Kulul within the Danakil Depression -75 m
highest point: Soira 3,018 m
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
gold, potash, zinc, copper, salt, possibly oil and natural gas, fish
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
arable land: 5.87%
permanent crops: 0.02%
other: 94.12% (2011)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
215.9 sq km (2003)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
6.3 cu km (2011)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total: 0.58 cu km/yr (5%/0%/95%)
per capita: 121.3 cu m/yr (2004)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
frequent droughts, rare earthquakes and volcanoes; locust swarms
volcanism: Dubbi (elev. 1,625 m), which last erupted in 1861, was the country's only historically active volcano until Nabro (2,218 m) came to life on 12 June 2011
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
deforestation; desertification; soil erosion; overgrazing; loss of infrastructure from civil warfare
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
strategic geopolitical position along world's busiest shipping lanes; Eritrea retained the entire coastline of Ethiopia along the Red Sea upon de jure independence from Ethiopia on 24 May 1993
Back to Top
People and Society ::Eritrea
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
noun: Eritrean(s)
adjective: Eritrean
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
nine recognized ethnic groups: Tigrinya 55%, Tigre 30%, Saho 4%, Kunama 2%, Rashaida 2%, Bilen 2%, other (Afar, Beni Amir, Nera) 5% (2010 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Tigrinya (official), Arabic (official), English (official), Tigre, Kunama, Afar, other Cushitic languages
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Muslim, Coptic Christian, Roman Catholic, Protestant
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
6,233,682 (July 2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 106
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0-14 years: 41.3% (male 1,292,544/female 1,279,523)
15-24 years: 20% (male 623,797/female 625,527)
25-54 years: 31.2% (male 963,635/female 982,786)
55-64 years: 3.8% (male 99,755/female 136,557)
65 years and over: 3.7% (male 100,332/female 129,226) (2013 est.)
population pyramid:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total: 18.9 years
male: 18.6 years
female: 19.3 years (2013 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
2.36% (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 34
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
31.39 births/1,000 population (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 39
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
7.78 deaths/1,000 population (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 108
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 84
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
urban population: 22% of total population (2010)
rate of urbanization: 5.2% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
ASMARA (capital) 649,000 (2009)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.98 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.73 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.79 male(s)/female
total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2013 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
240 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)
country comparison to the world: 47
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total: 39.38 deaths/1,000 live births
country comparison to the world: 61
male: 44.63 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 33.97 deaths/1,000 live births (2013 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total population: 63.19 years
country comparison to the world: 181
male: 61.04 years
female: 65.4 years (2013 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
4.25 children born/woman (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 35
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
2.7% of GDP (2010)
country comparison to the world: 183
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0.05 physicians/1,000 population (2004)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0.7 beds/1,000 population (2011)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
improved:
urban: 74% of population
rural: 57% of population
total: 61% of population
unimproved:
urban: 26% of population
rural: 43% of population
total: 39% of population (2008 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
improved:
urban: 52% of population
rural: 4% of population
total: 14% of population
unimproved:
urban: 48% of population
rural: 96% of population
total: 86% of population (2008 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0.8% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 55
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
25,000 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 72
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
1,700 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 55
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
degree of risk: high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne disease: malaria (2009)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
1.5% (2008)
country comparison to the world: 188
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
34.5% (2002)
country comparison to the world: 8
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
2.1% of GDP (2006)
country comparison to the world: 164
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 67.8%
male: 78.7%
female: 57.5% (2010 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total: 5 years
male: 6 years
female: 4 years (2009)
Back to Top
Government ::Eritrea
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
conventional long form: State of Eritrea
conventional short form: Eritrea
local long form: Hagere Ertra
local short form: Ertra
former: Eritrea Autonomous Region in Ethiopia
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
transitional government
note: following a successful referendum on independence for the Autonomous Region of Eritrea on 23-25 April 1993, a National Assembly, composed entirely of the People's Front for Democracy and Justice or PFDJ, was established as a transitional legislature and a Constitutional Commission was established to draft a constitution; ISAIAS Afworki was named president by the transitional legislature; the constitution, ratified in May 1997, did not enter into effect, pending parliamentary and presidential elections; parliamentary elections were scheduled in December 2001 but were postponed indefinitely; currently the PFDJ is the sole legal party and controls all national, regional, and local political offices
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
name: Asmara (Asmera)
geographic coordinates: 15 20 N, 38 56 E
time difference: UTC+3 (8 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
6 regions (zobatat, singular - zoba); Anseba, Debub (South), Debubawi K'eyih Bahri (Southern Red Sea), Gash Barka, Ma'akel (Central), Semenawi Keyih Bahri (Northern Red Sea)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
24 May 1993 (from Ethiopia)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Independence Day, 24 May (1993)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
adopted 23 May 1997, but never fully implemented
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
mixed legal system of civil, customary, and Islamic religious law
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
18 years of age; universal
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
chief of state: President ISAIAS Afworki (since 8 June 1993); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government and is head of the State Council and National Assembly
head of government: President ISAIAS Afworki (since 8 June 1993)
cabinet: State Council the collective exercises executive authority; members appointed by the president
(For more information visit the World Leaders website Opens in New Window)
elections: president elected by the National Assembly for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); the most recent and only election was held on 8 June 1993 (next election date uncertain as the National Assembly did not hold a presidential election in December 2001 as anticipated)
election results: ISAIAS Afworki elected president by the transitional National Assembly; percent of National Assembly vote - ISAIAS Afworki 95%, other 5%
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
unicameral National Assembly (150 seats; members elected by direct popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections: in May 1997, following the adoption of the new constitution, 75 members of the PFDJ Central Committee (the old Central Committee of the EPLF), 60 members of the 527-member Constituent Assembly, which had been established in 1997 to discuss and ratify the new constitution, and 15 representatives of Eritreans living abroad were formed into a Transitional National Assembly to serve as the country's legislative body until countrywide elections to a National Assembly were held; although only 75 of 150 members of the Transitional National Assembly were elected, the constitution stipulates that once past the transition stage, all members of the National Assembly will be elected by secret ballot of all eligible voters; National Assembly elections scheduled for December 2001 were postponed indefinitely due to the war with Ethiopia
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Supreme Court; Regional, subregional, and village courts
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
People's Front for Democracy and Justice or PFDJ [ISAIAS Afworki] (the only party recognized by the government); note - a National Assembly committee drafted a law on political parties in January 2001, but the full National Assembly never debated or voted on it
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Democratic Movement for the Liberation of Eritrean Kunama (DMLEK); Eritrean Democratic Alliance (EDA); Eritrean National Congress for Democratic Change (ENCDC); Eritrean National Salvation Front (ENSF); Eritrean Islamic Party for Justice and Development (EIPJD) (includes the Eritrean Islamic Jihad (EIJ), Eritrean Islamic Jihad Movement (EIJM), Eritrean Islamic Salvation, and the Eritrean Islamic Foundation); Eritrean People's Democratic Party (EPDP); Red Sea Afar Democratic Organization (RSADO)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
ACP, AfDB, AU, COMESA, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (NGOs), IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS (observer), ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO (subscriber), ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAS (observer), MIGA, NAM, OPCW, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires BERHANE Gebrehiwet Solomon
chancery: 1708 New Hampshire Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20009
telephone: [1] (202) 319-1991
FAX: [1] (202) 319-1304
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Sue BREMNER
embassy: 179 Ala Street, Asmara
mailing address: P. O. Box 211, Asmara
telephone: [291] (1) 120004
FAX: [291] (1) 127584
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
red isosceles triangle (based on the hoist side) dividing the flag into two right triangles; the upper triangle is green, the lower one is blue; a gold wreath encircling a gold olive branch is centered on the hoist side of the red triangle; green stands for the country's agriculture economy, red signifies the blood shed in the fight for freedom, and blue symbolizes the bounty of the sea; the wreath-olive branch symbol is similar to that on the first flag of Eritrea from 1952; the shape of the red triangle broadly mimics the shape of the country
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
camel
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
name: "Ertra, Ertra, Ertra" (Eritrea, Eritrea, Eritrea)

lyrics/music: SOLOMON Tsehaye Beraki/Isaac Abraham MEHAREZGI and ARON Tekle Tesfatsion
note: adopted 1993; upon independence from Ethiopia
Back to Top
Economy ::Eritrea
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Since independence from Ethiopia in 1993, Eritrea has faced the economic problems of a small, poor country, facing chronic drought. These have been exacerbated by restrictive economic policies. Eritrea has a command economy under the control of the sole political party, the People's Front for Democracy and Justice (PFDJ). Like the economies of many African nations, a large share of the population - nearly 80% - is engaged in subsistence agriculture. That sector only produces a small share of the country's total output. Since the conclusion of the Ethiopian-Eritrea war in 2000, the government has expanded use of military and party-owned businesses to complete President ISAIAS's development agenda. The government strictly controls the use of foreign currency by limiting access and availability. Few large private enterprises exist in Eritrea and most operate in conjunction with government partners, although recently a number of large international mining ventures have opened. Eritrea's national income also relies in part on taxes paid by members of the Diaspora. While reliable statistics on food security are difficult to obtain, erratic rainfall and the percentage of the labor force tied up in national service continue to interfere with agricultural production and economic development. Eritrea's harvests generally cannot meet the food needs of the country without supplemental grain purchases. Copper and gold production is likely to drive economic growth over the next few years, but military spending will continue to compete with development and investment plans. Eritrea's economic future will depend on market reform and success at addressing social problems such as illiteracy and low skills.
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$4.412 billion (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 173
$4.103 billion (2011 est.)
$3.774 billion (2010 est.)
note: data are in 2012 US dollars
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$3.108 billion (2012 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
7.5% (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 23
8.7% (2011 est.)
2.2% (2010 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$800 (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 223
$700 (2011 est.)
$700 (2010 est.)
note: data are in 2012 US dollars
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
agriculture: 11.6%
industry: 30.6%
services: 57.8% (2012 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
1.935 million (2007)
country comparison to the world: 123
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
agriculture: 80%
industry and services: 20% (2004 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
NA%
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
50% (2004 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
27.5% of GDP (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 33
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
revenues: $838.8 million
expenditures: $1.19 billion (2012 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
27% of GDP (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 111
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
-11.3% of GDP (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 209
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
118% of GDP (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 11
118.5% of GDP (2011 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
17% (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 215
20% (2011 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
NA%
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$1.817 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 131
$1.471 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$3.889 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 135
$3.156 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$3.947 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 123
$3.2 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
sorghum, lentils, vegetables, corn, cotton, tobacco, sisal; livestock, goats; fish
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
food processing, beverages, clothing and textiles, light manufacturing, salt, cement
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
8% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 27
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$-271.5 million (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 82
$-127.8 million (2011 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$304.5 million (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 179
$415.4 million (2011 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
livestock, sorghum, textiles, food, small manufactures
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$939.7 million (2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 178
$899.9 million (2011 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
machinery, petroleum products, food, manufactured goods
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$171.2 million (31 December 2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 161
$114.8 million (31 December 2011 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$1.026 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
country comparison to the world: 157
$1.013 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
nakfa (ERN) per US dollar -
15.38 (2012 est.)
15.38 (2011 est.)
15.38 (2010 est.)
15.38 (2009)
15.38 (2008)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
calendar year
Back to Top
Energy ::Eritrea
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
277 million kWh (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 173
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
242 million kWh (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 180
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 kWh (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 191
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 kWh (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 183
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
139,000 kW (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 162
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
99.3% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 57
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 85
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 169
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0.7% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 74
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 bbl/day (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 130
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 107
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 181
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 bbl (1 January 2012 es)
country comparison to the world: 129
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 bbl/day (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 144
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
4,480 bbl/day (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 173
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 bbl/day (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 175
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
2,670 bbl/day (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 173
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 cu m (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 125
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 cu m (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 139
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 cu m (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 94
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 cu m (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 189
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
0 cu m (1 January 2012 es)
country comparison to the world: 133
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
798,200 Mt (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 172
Back to Top
Communications ::Eritrea
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
58,500 (2011)
country comparison to the world: 159
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
241,900 (2011)
country comparison to the world: 175
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
general assessment: inadequate; most fixed-line telephones are in Asmara; government is seeking international tenders to improve the system; cell phones in increasing use throughout the country
domestic: combined fixed-line and mobile-cellular subscribership is less than 5 per 100 persons
international: country code - 291 (2011)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
government controls broadcast media with private ownership prohibited; 1 state-owned TV station; state-owned radio operates 2 networks; purchases of satellite dishes and subscriptions to international broadcast media are permitted (2007)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
.er
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
701 (2012)
country comparison to the world: 177
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
200,000 (2008)
country comparison to the world: 140
Back to Top
Transportation ::Eritrea
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
13 (2012)
country comparison to the world: 152
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total: 4
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2 (2012)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total: 9
over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 5
914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2012)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
1 (2012)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total: 306 km
country comparison to the world: 119
narrow gauge: 306 km 0.950-m gauge (2008)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total: 4,010 km
country comparison to the world: 158
paved: 874 km
unpaved: 3,136 km (2000)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
total: 4
country comparison to the world: 129
by type: cargo 2, petroleum tanker 1, roll on/roll off 1 (2010)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Assab, Massawa
Back to Top
Military ::Eritrea
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Eritrean Armed Forces: Eritrean Ground Forces, Eritrean Navy, Eritrean Air Force (includes Air Defense Force) (2011)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
18-40 years of age for male and female voluntary and compulsory military service; 16-month conscript service obligation (2006)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
males age 16-49: 1,350,446
females age 16-49: 1,362,575 (2010 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
males age 16-49: 896,096
females age 16-49: 953,757 (2010 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
male: 66,829
female: 66,731 (2010 est.)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
6.3% of GDP (2006 est.)
country comparison to the world: 10
Back to Top
Transnational Issues ::Eritrea
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Eritrea and Ethiopia agreed to abide by 2002 Ethiopia-Eritrea Boundary Commission's (EEBC) delimitation decision but, neither party responded to the revised line detailed in the November 2006 EEBC Demarcation Statement; Sudan accuses Eritrea of supporting eastern Sudanese rebel groups; in 2008 Eritrean troops moved across the border on Ras Doumera peninsula and occupied Doumera Island with undefined sovereignty in the Red Sea
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
IDPs: 10,000 (border war with Ethiopia from 1998-2000; it has not been possible to confirm whether remaining IDPs are still living with hosts or have been returned or resettled) (2009)
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
current situation: Eritrea is a source country for men, women, and children trafficked for the purposes of forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation; each year, large numbers of migrant workers depart Eritrea in search of work, particularly in the Gulf States, where some are likely to become victims of forced labor, including in domestic servitude, or commercial sexual exploitation; Eritrean children also work in various economic sectors, including domestic service, street vending, small-scale factories, and agriculture; child laborers frequently suffer abuse from their employers and some may be subjected to conditions of forced labor
tier rating: Tier 3 - the Government of Eritrea does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so; the Eritrean Government does not operate with transparency and published neither data nor statistics regarding its efforts to combat human trafficking; the government made no known progress in prosecuting and punishing trafficking crimes over the reporting period and did not appear to provide any significant assistance to victims of trafficking (2009)
Back to Top
Expand All | collapse All
  The online Factbook is updated weekly. ISSN 1553-8133
For additional information on government leaders in selected foreign countries, go to World Leaders.