Although Zambia's HIV epidemic has been declining since 2001, the estimated number of people in Zambia living with HIV is 1.2-1.3 million. According to a 2012 estimate, there were 16 physicians per 100,000 and 2 beds per 1,000 population. According to UNICEF, the growth of 45% of children under the age of 5 is stunted. Government expenditure on healthcare has increased while the public's expenses are among the lowest in southern Africa.
Copper mining is the primary export industry for Zambia's economy, and Zambia is the world's #1 producer of it. It accounts for over 70% of total exports. But agriculture employs more Zambians, and most rural Zambians are subsistence farmers. The policies of its initial socialist government following independence from the UK contributed to the nation's indebtedness.
Although the common picture of Zambia is one of excellent wildlife preserves and World Heritage Site Victoria Falls, it is one of the most urbanized nations in Sub-saharan Africa, with an estimated 44% of the population living in just a few small areas.
Although Zambia's education system is reportedly under-funded and standards are fairly low, access to basic education has improved remarkably since 2000, increasing by 75% between 2000 and 2007 in primary school and 119% in high school enrollment.
The roughly 75 tribal groups making up Zambia's population coexist well, in marked contrast to some of the neighboring countries in which tension among tribes was fostered by colonial powers and continues to this day. No major wars have been fought on Zambian soil, although in the early 2000's it hosted hundreds of thousands of refugees from wars in Angola and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Zambia's constitution declares it to be a Christian nation, and it prohibits discrimination on the basis of religion, guaranteeing religious freedom. President Edgar Lungu is said to be a strong believer, and declared October 18, 2016 an annual day for national prayer, fasting and reconciliation.
U.S. Government estimates are that Zambia's population is 75% Protestant, 20% Roman Catholic, with only 3.8% of the population adhering to other faiths (including Islam, Hinduism, Bahai, Buddhism, Sikhism.)
Because witchcraft is an indigenous belief (and because there is considerable blending of Christian beliefs with older traditional beliefs), multiple cases of mob violence against people suspected of witchcraft have been reported.
According to the CIA World Factbook, Zambia's birth rate is among the highest in the world, (#7) averaging almost 6 children per family. The median age is 16.7 years, life expectancy is 52.5 years and infant mortality rate is 62.9/1,000.
The IHME mortality chart for Zambia reveals that HIV/AIDS and other sexually-transmitted diseases, (20.63%) along with pollution-related conditions, (20%) and malnutrition (13.11%) make up the largest blocks of morbidity statistics (about 54%) compared to <5% for the USA.
Zambia is in Southern Africa, east of Angola and south of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It is bordered by the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, and Angola.