Guinea has a small industrial sector. Many of the old state-owned textile companies and fruit preservation industries were poorly managed and have today been closed down. The industries that remain are mainly focused on small-scale production for the domestic market.
They produce food, beverages, cigarettes, cement, metal products and various oil products. Almost all industries are located in the metropolitan area. Development is hampered by the lack of electricity and water.
There is a large aluminum smelter in the town of Fria. Several foreign companies are planning to build new smelters (see Natural Resources and Energy), but no construction has yet started.
- COUNTRYAAH: List of top trading partners of Guinea. Includes countries that imported most shipments from and exported most goods to the country.
FACTS – FOREIGN TRADE
US $ 3,978 million (2018)
US $ 3,386 million (2018)
– US $ 191 million (2018)
Commodity trade’s share of GDP
72 percent (2018)
Main export goods
bauxite, aluminum, gold
Largest trading partner
China, Netherlands, Spain, Belgium, India
Although the country can offer rich nature experiences and a large range of music to offer, few dare tourists to visit the troubled region. The 2014 Ebola epidemic also deterred people from traveling to the country.
Most of the visitors come from France. Outside the capital, there are few good hotels.
In 2013, just over 56,000 tourists came to Guinea.
FACTS – TOURISM
Number of foreign visitors per year
35 000 (2015)
US $ 17,400,000 (2016)
The share of tourist income from exports
0.7 percent (2016)
30 deaths on Election Day are confirmed
The country’s authorities confirm for the first time that the unrest following the March elections claimed 30 lives. Police intervened in several places as opposition activists tried to stop the election and there were immediate reports of dozens of protesters being killed (see March 22, 2020). The city of N’Zérékoré in the south was one of the worst affected places, but the city is isolated and the information that reached the outside world was contradictory. The regional authorities now announce that 30 people were killed and 67 injured during violent riots on Election Day. Homes, shops and churches must also have been destroyed. In the statement, the entire blame is laid on the political opposition, which has already called for a boycott of the election.
Guinea’s biggest music star dies
One of Guinea’s internationally renowned people, singer Mory Kanté, dies at a hospital in the capital Conakry. In the 1980s, Kanté was one of the main forces behind African music reaching beyond the continent’s borders. He is best known for his song “Yeke Yeke” which in 1988 reached first place on several European charts. Kanté turned 70 years old. His death, according to the family, is not linked to covid-19.
Six dead in protest against coronary restrictions
Police and protesters gather at several locations outside Conakry in connection with protests against the government’s coronary restrictions. Six people are killed. The protests primarily concern the roadblocks set up around the capital in an attempt to reduce travel and thus the spread of infection. Guinea is one of the countries in Africa so far worst hit by covid-19, with over 2,200 confirmed cases and 11 dead.
Food shortages are threatening in Guinea
The effects of the ongoing pandemic are now beginning to become evident to the many Guineans who have lost their jobs. The 30 tonnes of rice delivered by President Alpha Condé to help people provide food for the day are far from enough to meet their needs. So far, 688 cases of covid-19 have been reported from Guinea, and at least six people have died from the disease.
New President elected
Amadou Damaro Camara, from the ruling Guinean People’s Party (RPG), is elected new President of Parliament, the National Assembly, with 98 out of 114 votes. Six members voted for the only challenger, political novice Mohamed Lamine Kaba. This is the first time the National Assembly has gathered since the disputed elections on November 22.
Mandatory to wear mouthguards outdoors
President Alpha Condé announces that it will be mandatory for those who move outdoors to wear mouthguards as of April 18, in order to counter the continued spread of the new corona virus. Anyone who violates this may have to pay a “disobedience tax” of 30,000 Guinean francs (equivalent to just over US $ 3). So far, 300 cases of covid-19 have been reported in Guinea, but the disease is spreading “at an alarming rate,” according to President Condé. In the past, all schools, churches and mosques have been closed, larger crowds have been banned, borders have been closed and nightly curfews have been imposed.
Condé approves constitution via decree
President Alpha Condé approves, through decree, the new constitution adopted in a disputed referendum in March (see March 2020). This is done via a television broadcast where the president simultaneously announces a $ 315 million support package to deal with the financial consequences of the ongoing pandemic. Among other things, the state will pay electricity bills for three months for the poorest part of the population, while freezing prices for medicines and a number of basic commodities and removing all charges from public transport for three months.
Condés RPG wins the parliamentary election
Part of the result of the parliamentary elections on March 22 is now presented by the Election Commission. President Alpha Condés Guinean People’s Party (RPG) wins by almost 58 percent of the 79 votes out of 114 seats, while Guinea’s Democratic Union (UDG) gets 4 seats, Guinea’s Democratic People’s Movement gets 3 seats and New Democratic Forces gets 3 seats. In addition, a number of small parties entered the Parliament, the National Assembly, with between 1 or 2 seats. The turnout is 58 percent. According to information from Amnesty, at least twelve people were killed during the election day, most in Conakry. Since last fall, protests against the government and constitutional change have required at least 32 lives. Both the United States and the EU have expressed doubts about whether the election was right.
Guinea faces nightly curfew
President Alpha Condé decide by decree to impose a curfew between nine in the evening and five o’clock in the morning to try to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus in the country. It is also prohibited to travel from the capital Conakry to Guinea’s inland. So far, 20 cases of covid-19 have been reported in the country, but none have yet died of the disease in Guinea.
Clear sign of new constitution in disputed referendum
Nearly 92 percent of voters approved the new constitution in the referendum held on March 22. The turnout was 61 percent. The result is announced by the opposition alliance FNDC, which urged voters to boycott the election. In the violence that erupted after the election, according to the opposition, many people have demanded lives. FNDC reports that 66 people were killed in the city of N’Zékékoré in the southern part of the country. Both France, the United States and the EU have criticized the government for the way the referendum, as well as the parliamentary elections held simultaneously, were carried out.
Several dead in unrest over the election
The parliamentary elections and the referendum on a new constitution are being held as planned, but unrest erupts, among other things, in the capital Conakry as opposition activists try to prevent the election from being held. Election halls are reported to have been set on fire, election materials destroyed and police officers attacked. According to opposition sources, at least ten people have been killed in clashes between police and protesters. A large number of people must have been arrested and the security forces are said to have indiscriminately shot at the opposition activists. As most of the opposition boycott the election, it is already considered clear that the government side wins the parliamentary elections and that the new constitution is approved. Because Guinea has received its first two cases of covid-19, voters at some polling stations are urged to wash their hands and keep distance from other voters. The opposition alliance FNDC calls for protests on 23 and 24 March. For the election results seeApril 2, 2020 .
Disruptions in Internet traffic during the election weekend
Several telecom companies announce that there will be disruptions in Internet and telephone traffic over the coming weekend due to maintenance work. This is happening at the same time as Guinea is up for election, partly to elect a new parliament and vote on a new constitution (see February 5, 2020)). Most of the political opposition boycott the election and have called on voters to do the same. It has accused the government of having around several million invalid names in the voting booths. The authorities now say that these names have been deleted, but it has not been enough to calm the opposition who do not think the election can be carried out correctly and under free form. A group from Ecowas has also expressed concern that about 2.5 million of the 7.7 million voters registered have lacked the necessary documents. The election is being carried out even though two cases of covid-19 disease have been registered in the country. At the same time, neighboring countries have banned all major public gatherings in an effort to reduce the spread of infection.
New election date: March 22
the 12th of March
The parliamentary election and the referendum on the country’s new constitution will be held on March 22, the Election Commission announces Ceni. However, an approval of the date from the country’s constitutional court is required for it to be disposed of.
A referendum on new constitution is postponed
President Alpha Condé announces that the referendum on a new constitution and the parliamentary elections that would have been held today has been postponed. He suggests that it is only a matter of delaying the elections for a short time. The message comes after, among other things, the African Union (AU) and the West African cooperation organization Ecowas expressed concern that the elections could not be carried out properly. They had also decided not to send any election observers to Guinea. OIF, a cooperative organization for French-speaking countries, has pointed to problems in verifying 2.5 million of the names in the voting, the number of names has increased extra rapidly in a part of the country where the president has strong support. After the referendum has been postponed, new protests erupt.Read more about the proposals in the new constitution onFebruary 2, 2020.
Opposition politicians are arrested
Several opposition politicians are arrested in Conakry in connection with new protests against the government. Three of the arrested, all women, belong to the National Front for Defense of the Constitution (FNDC), are accused, among other things, of disrupting the general order. Opposition activists are also being arrested elsewhere in the country. This only happens eleven days before the referendum on whether a new constitution and parliamentary elections should be held. However, both elections are boycotted by the opposition, which fears that the constitutional changes are an attempt by Alpha Condé to try to be re-elected for a third term. Since the opposition began its protests against this fall in 2019, 28 civilians and a military police have been killed.
The opposition is thinking boycott referendum
Guinea’s largest opposition parties announce that they will boycott the referendum on a new constitution on March 1. Ever since last fall, the opposition has protested against what is seen as an attempt by President Alpha Condé to try to stay in power, protests that demanded 29 lives (28 civilians and a military police force have been killed). According to the draft new constitution that was presented in December 2019, it is stated, as before, that the president can only sit for a maximum of two terms of office. Condé has so far said nothing if he intends to try to stand again. In addition, it is proposed that the term of office of the President be extended from five years to six years, that genital mutilation and child and forced marriage, that no gender should have more than two-thirds of the seats in Parliament and that it should pave the way for a more equal distribution of the country’s resources. Condé believes that it is all about modernizing the constitution.
The parliamentary elections are postponed until March 1
The Guinea parliamentary elections are now postponed yet again, from February 16 to March 1. It announces President Alpha Condé, without giving any reason for it. Large parts of the opposition have said that they should boycott the elections and try to prevent it from being held, but with the help of peaceful methods. The election was originally held at the end of 2018. Shortly thereafter, President Condé announces that a referendum on a new constitution will be held on the same day.
Political unrest beats Guinea’s economy
It is now clear that the prolonged political turmoil is beating Guinea’s economy. Many companies have shut down and transported goods and others have suffered major disruptions. The risk is great that even the mining industry that is important to the country is affected, not least after information that freight trains have been stopped by activists who blocked the traffic.
Three dead in new riots in Labé
New violence erupts in the city of Labé, in the western part of the country, as opposition supporters clash with security forces. Three people are killed, two of them shot dead during the clashes, the third being shot in connection with the other two being picked up by ambulance, according to the city’s mayor. According to some sources, another 10 people must have been shot. Tensions are strong in Labé, where the opposition has many supporters. What triggered the unrest this time is not known, but it was not an organized protest action. Since the opposition alliance FNDC began its protests in October, 23 civilian Guineans have been killed and one military police.
Two were shot dead in connection with protests
Two protesters are shot dead by security forces as the opposition raises new protests against the government and fears that President Alpha Condé intends to change the constitution to be eligible for re-election for a third term. One of the fatalities, where the victim is a 21-year-old student, takes place in Conakry, the other in the city of Labé in the north, where the victim is only 18 years. Reports come later about another death victim in Labé. A few days later, the National Front for the Defense of the Constitution (FNDC) chooses to suspend planned protests.
The opposition is sticking to election boycotts
7 th of January
Large parts of the Guinean opposition now state that it will boycott the parliamentary elections on February 16. The time limit has now passed when parties have to register their candidacy with the Electoral Commission Ceni. At the same time, Ceni announces that 29 parties, including President Alpha Condés Guinean People’s Party (RPG).
New protests against Condé
Tens of thousands of Guineans gather in Conakry and several other cities to protest the government. In the capital, red-clad protesters carry placards with texts saying they will not allow President Alpha Condé to stand for a third term as president. In the city of Kankan in the eastern part of the country, riots erupt as Condé’s supporters attack protesters. At the end of last year, Condé presented a proposal for a new constitution (see December 2019), but he did not say whether he intends to take part in the 2020 presidential election. About 20 people, including a military police, have been killed since the protests began in October.