The Republic of Togo, La République Togolaise
Area: Togo covers 56,785 square kilometers, making it one of the smallest countries in Africa
Climate and Geography: Located in Western Africa, south of the Gulf of Guinea, east of Benin, west of Ghana, north of the border with Bourkina-faso. The coastline is 56 kilometers long. The south is a rainforest climate, and the north is a tropical grassland climate. The average annual temperature in the coastal area is 27 C, with 30 C in the north.
Population: 7,800,000 (2017)
Languages: French (Official language), Ewé and Kabiyé (The two most widely spoken indigenous languages)
Religion: Animism (70%), Christianity (20%), Islam (10%)
Independent Day: January 13
National Day: April 27
Head of State: Faure Essozimna Gnassingbé
Membership: Togo is a member of the United Nations, African Union, Organization of Islamic Cooperation, South Atlantic Peace and Cooperation Zone, Francophonie, and Economic Community of West African States.
In Togo, some 22,000 people rely on fishing to make a living along the country's Atlantic shoreline. (Photo: AFP)
Togo is one of the world's least developed countries published by the United Nations. Agriculture, phosphate and re-export trade are the three pillar industries. The economic restructuring program has been in place since 1983.
Since his re-election in 2015, President Fore has been actively pursuing economic reform initiatives aimed at improving the business environment, improving the financing conditions of small and micro enterprises and maintaining steady economic growth. However, due to the weak foundation and single structure, and the political instability that has affected the business environment since August 2017, the economy as a whole is still relatively difficult.
File photo of Togolese President Faure Gnassingbe. (Photo: CGTN)
The Constitution provides for a semi-presidential system in Togo.
The president is the head of State and the supreme commander of the army, elected directly by the electorate, and a majority wins for a term of five years and is eligible for re-election. The president has the power to dissolve parliament, enact laws passed by parliament and impose pardons.
The prime minister is from the parliamentary majority and is appointed by the president and is accountable to Parliament. Parliament can file a case of no confidence in the prime minister, which can be adopted by a 2/3 majority of Parliament to request the appointment of a new prime minister. The Constitution may be amended on the proposal of the president and Parliament and adopted by Parliament or by referendum.
The Supreme Court is the highest judicial body, with two courts of Justice and administration, composed of the president and judges. The president of the Supreme Court must be a professional judge appointed by the president. Gamado Akapovi is the current president of the Supreme Court. The prosecutorial power is exercised by the prosecutor general located at all levels of the courts.
Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) meets with Togolese President Faure Gnassingbe in Johannesburg, South Africa, Dec. 3, 2015. (Photo: Xinhua/Xie Huanchi)
Relations with China:
Senior Communist Party of China (CPC) official Wang Huning met with Togolese President Faure Gnassingbe after the 2018 Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation on September 3-4.
Wang, a Standing Committee member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and a member of the Secretariat of the CPC Central Committee, said China stands ready to work with Togo to implement the outcomes of the summit, align the Belt and Road Initiative with Togo's vision to become an emerging country in 2030, and expand pragmatic cooperation to benefit the peoples of the two countries.
Faure Gnassingbe congratulated China on the success of the Beijing summit which signified the strong friendship between Africa and China. He said the negative comments concerning the Africa-China cooperation are unacceptable in Africa.
He expressed Togo's willingness to work with China to implement the outcomes of the summit and advance the bilateral relations and Africa-China friendship.