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Country Guides Guinea:

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Guinea

  1. Country Facts
  2. Health
  3. Media
  1. Intro
  2. Geography
  3. People
  4. Travel
  5. Embassies & Visas
  6. Finance
  7. Cities/Regions

Quick Facts

Region: Africa
Full Name: Republic of Guinea
Capital City: Conakry
Language Spoken: French (official); note - each ethnic group has its own language

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Geographic data

11 00 N, 10 00 W

Elevation Extremes

lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Mont Nimba 1,752 m

Land boundaries

total: 3,399 km border countries: Cote d'Ivoire 610 km, Guinea-Bissau 386 km, Liberia 563 km, Mali 858 km, Senegal 330 km, Sierra Leone 652 km

Natural hazards

hot, dry, dusty harmattan haze may reduce visibility during dry season

Natural resources

bauxite, iron ore, diamonds, gold, uranium, hydropower, fish, salt

Land use

arable land: 4.47% permanent crops: 2.64% other: 92.89% (2005)

Environmental current issues

deforestation; inadequate supplies of potable water; desertification; soil contamination and erosion; overfishing, overpopulation in forest region; poor mining practices have led to environmental damage

Climate

The climate is tropical and humid with a wet and a dry season. Guinea is one of the wettest countries in West Africa. The Monsoon rainy season with a south-westerly wind lasts from June to November; The dry season with a north-easterly harmattan lasts from December to May. Required clothing Tropical or washable cottons throughout the year. A light raincoat or umbrella is needed during the rainy season.

Time difference

time difference: UTC 0

Population

9,690,222 (July 2006 est.)

Age structure

0-14 years: 44.4% (male 2,171,733/female 2,128,027) 15-64 years: 52.5% (male 2,541,140/female 2,542,847) 65 years and over: 3.2% (male 134,239/female 172,236) (2006 est.)

Median age

total: 17.7 years male: 17.4 years female: 17.9 years (2006 est.)

Population growth rate

2.63% (2006 est.)

Birth rate

41.76 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)

Death rate

15.48 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)

Net migration rate

0 migrant(s)/1,000 population note: as a result of conflict in neighboring countries, Guinea is host to approximately 141,500 refugees from Cote d'Ivoire, Liberia, and Sierra Leone (2006 est.)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/female total population: 1 male(s)/female (2006 est.)

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 49.5 years male: 48.34 years female: 50.7 years (2006 est.)

Total fertility rate

5.79 children born/woman (2006 est.)

Business Practices

Tropical-weight suits and some business visitors wear ties, but these are not essential. Appointments should be made in advance. Knowledge of French is advisable and patience in all business dealings is required. Office hours are usually 0800-1630 Monday to Thursday and 0800-1300 Friday.

Crime

Residential and street crime is common. In an effort to counter urban crime, the Guinean government maintains countrywide roadblocks from midnight to 6 A.M. Banditry near the Sierra Leone and Liberia borders has also been reported. Criminals particularly target visitors at the airport, in the traditional markets, and near hotels and restaurants frequented by foreigners. Visitors should avoid unsolicited offers of assistance at the airport or hotels as such persons may be seeking opportunities to steal luggage, purses or wallets. Travelers should arrange to be met at the airport by hotel personnel, family members or business contacts so as to reduce vulnerability to these crimes of opportunity. Commercial scams and disputes with local business partners have occasionally created legal difficulties for foreign citizens.

Hotels

In Conakry there are a few highly priced hotels of an adequate standard. The main hotels in Conakry are: the Hotel Camayenne (Located Midtown), the Novotel - Grand Hotel De L'independence (Located Downtown), the Hotel Le Galion (Located Uptown) and the Hotel Mariador (Located Uptown). Kankan also has a few hotels.

Communications

Telephone IDD service is available. The country code is 224. The communication is relatively poor and outgoing international calls must be made through the operator. Limited telephone and fax lines are usually available. There are currently three cellular phone companies in Conakry (Spacetel, Telecel, and Sotelgui). Competition between the three service providers affords customers reasonable rates. Malaysian investors are determined to expand and improve the services of the local phone company. Telex facilities are available at the Hotel de l'Ind?p?ndence and Grand Hotel de l'Unit?. There are numerous post offices in the capital.

Electricity

is at 220 volts, 50Hz. Electricity 220 volts, 50Hz.

Plug Types

C,F,K

Food And Dining

Restaurants, except in the capital where Western-style food is available, generally serve local dishes. Main hotels, mostly in the capital, have reasonable restaurants where a wide variety of alcoholic beverages are served. Conakry has several French p?tisseries selling coffee and cakes.

National specialties:
? Jollof rice.
? Stuffed chicken with groundnuts.
? Fish (served with rice).
? Cassava, yams and maize.
? Maize soup.
? Brochettes.
? Fruit (coconut and bananas). National drinks:
? Beer (West African brands).
? Fresh fruit juice.

Tipping:
A 10 per cent service charge will usually be included in the bill.

Nightlife
Although there are theaters, nightclubs and cinemas, Guineans prefer to make their own entertainment. In the streets people can often be seen gathered together to dance, sing and play traditional musical instruments or home-made guitars. Conakry is a dynamic center for music and the singing of the Kindia people is renowned. There is also an open air cinema in the small town of Mamou.

Entry departure requirements

Visa immigration information

Passports

Passports valid for a minimum of six months beyond date of departure required by all.

Visas

Required by all except the following:

(a) Nationals of Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, C?te d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo for stays up to 90 days.

Types of visa and cost

Tourist and Business: US$112 (single-entry for a stay of up to one month); US$155 (multiple-entry for a stay of up to three months).

Application to

Consulate (or Consular section at Embassy). UK nationals may apply to the Chancery Consulate General of the Republic of Guinea in London (see General Info section).

Application requirements

(a) Two application forms. (b) Two passport-size photos. (c) Passport with a remaining validity of six months after intended length of stay. (d) Proof of sufficient funds and letter of invitation or hotel reservation. (e) Proof of funds. Business: (a)-(e) and (f) Letter from the applicant's company. (g) Letter from the sponsoring company in Guinea.

Working days required

Two to three.

Passport Visa Information

Consulate General of the Republic of Guinea in the UK

83 Victoria Street, London, SW1H 0HW, UK

Tel: (020) 7078 6087.

E-mail: ambaguineeuk@yahoo.co.uk

Embassy of the Republic of Guinea in the USA

2112 Leroy Place, NW, Washington, DC 20008, USA

Tel: (202) 986 4300.

Fax: (202) 986 4800.

Travellers are advised against all but essential travel to the areas bordering Liberia, Sierra Leone and C?te d'Ivoire.

Travellers should avoid all demonstrations and political rallies.

Petty crime is common in Guinea. Travellers should take sensible precautions and maintain a high level of vigilance in public.

The threat from terrorism is low.

This advice is based on information provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the UK. It is correct at time of publishing. As the situation can change rapidly, visitors are advised to contact the following organizations for the latest travel advice:

British Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Tel: (0845) 850 2829.

Website: www.fco.gov.uk

US Department of State

Website: http://travel.state.gov/travel

HIV entry requirements

No Test Required

Departure tax

None

Embassies

British Embassy, Conakry

BP 6729

Conakry

Republic of Guinea

Telephone: (00) (224) 30 45 58 07

Facsimile: (00) (224) 30 45 60 20

Email: britcon.oury@biasy.net

Currency

Guinea Franc (GNF) = 100 centimes. Notes are in denominations of GNF5000, 1000 and 500. Coins are in denominations of GNF25, 10, 5 and 1.

Currency restrictions

It is possible to import up to 1,000 Guinea Francs providing you have a valid export declaration for that amount. Import of foreign currency is unlimited, provided declared on arrival; export is limited to the amount declared on arrival. Note: It is compulsory to exchange a certain amount of foreign currency. The amount depends on the length of stay specified in the visa, and is at the discretion of the immigration authorities. Unused currency can sometimes be re-exchanged ? again at the discretion of the authorities. Travelers are advised to check that the amounts exchanged have been entered correctly onto the declaration form.

Banking hours

Mon-Fri 0800-1230 and 1430-1700.

Currency exchange

Hotels will accept some foreign currencies in payment. Inter-bank fund transfers are frequently difficult, if not impossible, to accomplish.

Credit cards

Limited acceptance. Check with your credit or debit card company for details of merchant acceptability and other services which may be available. Guinea has a cash economy. ATMs are not available.

Travellers cheques

To avoid additional exchange rate charges, travelers are advised to take traveller's cheques in US Dollars or Euros. These are only accepted in some banks and hotels.

City/RegionCity/Area codeFollowed by
Bok?31+ 4 digits
Boussoura46+ 4 digits
Conakry47+ 4 digits
Dalaba69+ 4 digits
Faranah81+ 4 digits
Fria24+ 4 digits
Gu?ck?dou97+ 4 digits
Kamsar32+ 4 digits
Kankan71+ 4 digits
Kindia61+ 4 digits
Kissidougou98+ 4 digits
Lab?51+ 4 digits
Macenta94+ 4 digits
Mamou68+ 4 digits
N?Z?r?kor?91+ 4 digits
Pita53+ 4 digits
Sangoya42+ 4 digits
T?lim?l?613+ 3 digits
  1. Health Information
  2. Recent Disease Outbreaks
  3. Hospital Database

Dental care

There is little or no dental care available in Guinea

Medication Availability

Some medication is available via local pharmacies, although it can on occasion be in short supply

Blood supplies

Blood supplies should be considered as unsafe in Guinea

Medical facilities

Medical facilities are poorly equipped and extremely limited. Medicines are in short supply, sterility of equipment is questionable, and treatment is unreliable.

General caution

Recent medical and dental exams should ensure that the traveler is in good health. Carry appropriate health and accident insurance documents and copies of any important medical records. Bring an adequate supply of all prescription and other medications as well as any necessary personal hygiene items, including a spare pair of eyeglasses or contact lenses if necessary. Drink only bottled beverages (including water) or beverages made with boiled water. Do not use ice cubes or eat raw seafood, rare meat or dairy products. Eat well-cooked foods while they are still hot and fruits that can be peeled without contamination. Avoid roadside stands and street vendors. Swim only in well-maintained, chlorinated pools or ocean water known to be free from pollution; avoid freshwater lakes, streams and rivers. Wear clothing which reduces exposed skin and apply repellents containing DEET to remaining areas. Sleep in well-screened accommodations. Carry anti-diarrheal medication. Reduce problems related to sun exposure by using sunglasses, wide-brimmed hats, sunscreen lotions and lip protection.

Specific concerns

AIDS occurs. Blood supply may not be adequately screened and/or single-use, disposable needles and syringes may be unavailable. When possible, travelers should defer medical treatment until reaching a facility where safety can be assured.

Immunization

Cholera: Although limited in effectiveness, vaccination may be appropriate for persons living and/or working in less than sanitary conditions for more than 3 months where medical facilities are unavailable. Vaccination may also be appropriate for travelers with impaired gastric defenses who are planning an extended visit or being exposed to unsanitary conditions. Vaccination is not advised for pregnant women, infants younger than 6 months old, or persons with a history of severe reaction to the vaccine. Hepatitis A: Consider active immunization with hepatitis A vaccine or passive immunization with immune globulin (IG) for all susceptible travelers. Especially consider choosing active immunization for persons planning to reside for a long period or for persons who take frequent short-term trips to risk areas. The importance of protection against hepatitis A increases as length of stay increases. It is particularly important for persons who will be living in or visiting rural areas, eating or drinking in settings of poor or uncertain sanitation, or who will have close contact with local persons (especially young children) in settings with poor sanitary conditions. Hepatitis B: Vaccination is advised for health care workers, persons anticipating direct contact with blood from or sexual contact with inhabitants, and persons planning extended stays of 6 months or greater (especially those who anticipate using local health care facilities, staying in rural areas, or having intimate contact with the local population). Meningitis: Meningococcal vaccine is recommended for travelers, particularly during the December-June dry season when epidemics are most likely to occur. Importance of vaccination increases with length of stay and/or exposure to crowded conditions. Pregnancy is a relative contraindication to vaccination. Protection may be less effective for infants and children aged 3-23 months than it is for persons aged 2 years and older. Polio: A one-time booster dose is recommended for travelers who have previously completed a standard course of polio immunization. Refer to CDC guidelines for vaccinating unimmunized or incompletely immunized persons. Pregnancy is a relative contraindication to vaccination; however, if protection is needed, either IPV or OPV may be used, depending on preference and time available. Rabies: Preexposure vaccination should be considered for persons staying longer than 30 days who are expected to be at risk to bites from domestic and/or wild animals (particularly dogs), or for persons engaged in high risk activities such as spelunking or animal handling. Need for vaccination is more important if potential exposure is in rural areas and if adequate postexposure care is not readily available. Typhoid: Vaccination should be considered for persons staying longer than 3 weeks, adventurous eaters, and those who will venture off the usual tourist routes into small cities, villages and rural areas. Importance of vaccination increases as access to reasonable medical care becomes limited. Contraindications depend on vaccine type. Yellow fever: Vaccination is recommended for travelers over 9 months of age going outside of urban areas. Note: All routine vaccines (such as DTP or Td, Hib, MMR, polio, varicella, influenza and pneumococcal) should be kept up-to-date as a matter of good health practice unrelated to travel.

Disease risk summary

Insect-borne diseases: are major causes of illness. Many diseases, including yellow fever, are endemic, with only scattered cases being reported and, from time to time, more extensive outbreaks. Filariasis - prevalent Leishmaniasis - occurs (both cutaneous and visceral types may be found, particularly in the drier areas) Loiasis - prevalent Malaria - prevalent Onchocerciasis (river blindness) - prevalent Relapsing fever - occurs Trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness) - occurs (human type - mainly in small, isolated areas - is reported) Tungiasis - prevalent Typhus - occurs (louse-, flea-, and tick-borne types occur) Food-borne and water-borne illness: highly endemic. The dysenteries and diarrheal diseases, giardiasis, the typhoid fevers and viral hepatitis are widespread. Echinococcosis (hydatid disease) is widespread in animal-breeding areas. Cholera - occurs Dracunculiasis - occurs Helminthic (parasitic worm) infections - prevalent Lassa fever - occurs (exists in some rural areas, and people visiting these areas should take particular care to avoid rat-contaminated food or food containers; but the extent of the disease should not be exaggerated) Schistosomiasis - common Other hazards: Diseases such as measles and diphtheria are commonly reported, and cases of polio still occur regularly. Influenza risk extends throughout the year. Meningococcal meningitis - occurs (risk is highest during the December-June dry season, when epidemics are most likely) Rabies - common Trachoma - prevalent

Entry requirements

Yellow fever: A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required from travelers over 1 year of age coming from infected areas. (Contrary to published requirments, the U.S. Embassy reports that proof of yellow fever vaccination is required for all travelers; however, this policy may not be consistently enforced.)

Recent disease outbreaks

No recent disease outbreaks

NameAddress
Centre Hospitalier UniversitaireDeen Conakry

Media


Press: Newspapers include Horoya (official, daily), Le Lynx (satirical, weekly), L'Ind?pendant and La Lance (weekly), Journal Officiel de Guin?e (official, fortnightly) and L'Ev?nement de Guin?e (monthly).
Radio: BBC World Service (website: www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice) and Voice of America (website: www.voa.gov) can be received. From time to time the frequencies change and the most up-to-date can be found online.

Need help?

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Sat 8:30am - 4pm.
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Contact details can be found in your policy documentation

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