Space Program of Botswana

------The Botswanan Space Agency------

Level = 0                                         Development: Very Low


Country Overview

What has been going on in Botswana?



Space Agency and its Activity

What kind of space power do they have?



Weapons and Power Projection

Does Botswana have space weapons?



Timeline and the Future

What are they planning over there?

Population: 1,800,000 / Language: English / GDP: $11,500 / Cities: Gaborone

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   Botswana, one of Africa's most stable countries, is the continent's longest continuous multi-party democracy.

It is relatively free of corruption and has a good human rights record.

It is also the world's largest producer of diamonds and the trade has transformed it into a middle-income nation.

Botswana protects some of Africa's largest areas of wilderness. It is sparsely populated, because it is so dry. The Kalahari desert, home to a dwindling band of Bushman hunter-gatherers, makes up much of the territory and most areas are too arid to sustain any agriculture other than cattle.

The government wants the remaining Bushman population of the Kalahari game reserve to move to nearby towns. It denies reports that some Bushmen have been forced off their ancestral land.


  • Politics: Controversy surrounds the forced relocation of San Bushmen from their traditional hunting grounds
  • Economy: Recent economic growth has been high by African standards. The goverment sees diversification out of diamonds as a priority
  • International: Botswana plays an active role in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) economic grouping and has supplied troops for intervention in other parts of Africa

In the late 1800s Britain formed the protectorate of Bechuanaland, preventing territorial encroachment of Boers from the Transvaal or German expansion from South West Africa. In 1966 Bechuanaland became independent as Botswana.

Botswana was a haven for refugees and anti-apartheid activists from South Africa in the 1970s and 1980s, but had to tread carefully because of its economic dependence on the white-ruled neighbour, and because of South Africa's military might.

More recently, the country has seen an influx of illegal immigrants seeking respite from the economic crisis in neighbouring Zimbabwe.

Botswana, which once had the world's highest rate of HIV-Aids infection, has one of Africa's most-advanced treatment programmes. Anti-retroviral drugs are readily available.

However, the UN says more than one in three adults in Botswana are infected with HIV or have developed Aids. The disease has orphaned many thousands of children and has dramatically cut life expectancy.

Botswana is trying to reduce its economic dependence on diamonds. Safari-based tourism - tightly-controlled and often upmarket - is an important source of income.

Full name: The Republic of Botswana

  • Population: 1.7 million (via UN, 2006)
  • Capital: Gaborone
  • Area: 581,730 sq km (224,607 sq miles)
  • Major languages: English (official), Setswana
  • Major religions: Christianity, indigenous beliefs
  • Life expectancy: 36 years (men), 37 years (women) (UN)
  • Monetary unit: 1 Pula = 100 thebe
  • Main exports: Diamonds, copper, nickel, beef
  • GNI per capita: US $5,180 (World Bank, 2006)
  • Internet domain: .bw
  • International dialling code: +267

President: Festus Mogae

Festus Mogae's party scored a landslide victory in October 2004 elections, winning a new five-year mandate to rule.

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 Botswana's Space Infrastructure


  Botswana is troubled by the ongoing insurgency throughout the country against the occupation of it by American forces. Its space program is not suprisingly, nonexistent. Not only does it not have an agency, but also not much of an infrastructure in which one would arise. The University of Botswana offers a degree in engineering but nothing specific to space related educational architecture, such as astrophysics, astronomy, astronautics or aeronautics. It focuses mostly on agriculture in this rural, mountainous country. The government has no ministry devoted to science of this type.

Botswana has no history of being part of any organization dealing with space, nor has launch capability.

It lacks the industrial base, the educational base and the political foundation for a process like this to occur within it. It has no functioning university with an astrophysics or astronautics program, and marginal industry.

It operates no satellites and, not having an orbital presence, has no space power.

The government of Botswana in Gaborone has no plans for attempting to further any ambition in space development or research, but may once things stabilize, if they ever do.






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Timeline of Events in Botswana

...From the Past to the Future

 1867 - European gold prospectors arrive, mining begins.

1885 - British proclaim a protectorate called Bechuanaland.

1890 - British protectorate is extended to Chobe river.

1950 - Chief of the Ngwato, Seretse Khama, is deposed and exiled by the British.

1952 - Rioters protest at Seretse Khama's exile.

1959 - Copper mines are established.

1960 - Bechuanaland People's Party (BPP) is established.

1960 December - Britain approves new constitution for Bechuanaland. Executive Council, Legislative Council and African Council are established.

1961 - Seretse Khama appointed to Executive Council.

1962 - Seretse Khama founds Bechuanaland Democratic Party (BDP), later to become Botswana Democratic Party.

1965 - Gaborone becomes administrative centre.

1965 - BDP wins legislative elections, first to be held under universal adult suffrage. Seretse Khama becomes prime minister.


1966 September - Bechuanaland is granted independence and becomes Republic of Botswana with Seretse Khama as president.

1967 - Diamonds discovered at Orapa.

1969 August - BDP wins general election. Khama is re-elected for another term.

1977 January - UN Security Council resolution demands Rhodesian hostilities on Botswana border cease.

1977 March - Botswana Defence Force is established.

1979 October - General elections: BDP wins majority, Khama is re-elected as president.

1980 - Botswana is founder member of Southern African Development Coordination Conference (SADCC), grouping which aims to reduce region's economic reliance on South Africa.

1980 - President Seretse Khama dies. Quett Masire, former vice-president, is made president after National Assembly vote.

1984 September - General elections: BDP wins majority, Quett Masire is re-elected as president.

1985 June - Buildings in Gaborone are raided and 12 people are killed by South African forces seeking alleged ANC members. Action is condemned by UN Security Council.

1989 October - General elections; BDP wins majority. National Assembly re-elects Masire as president.

1991 - 12,000 public sector workers sacked after strike action calling for increased wages.

1994 October - Legislative elections: BDP secures 53% of vote. Masire re-elected by National Assembly.

Kalahari relocations

1995 - Government begins relocating thousands of bushmen to settlements outside Central Kalahari Game Reserve.

1997 - Constitutional amendments approved. Presidency is limited to two five-year terms. Voting age lowered from 21 to 18.

1998 March/April - Masire resigns as president and retires. Festus Mogae, formerly vice president, becomes president under new constitutional arrangements.

1998 June - Botswana Congress Party established after split in BNF and is declared official opposition after most BNF deputies switch allegiance.

1999 September - Six-day state of emergency declared to resolve voter registration problem.

1999 October - General elections: BDP wins majority, Festus Mogae is confirmed as president.

1999 December - International Court of Justice grants control of Sedudu-Kasikili - a river island disputed by Botswana and Namibia - to Botswana.

2000 February/March - Devastating floods: More than 60,000 are made homeless.

Battle against Aids

2000 August - President Mogae says Aids drugs will be made available free of charge from 2001.

2001 March - National diamond corporation, Debswana, says it will subsidise drugs for workers with Aids.

2002 March - Kalahari bushmen take the government to court to challenge a forced eviction from their land; the case is dismissed on a technicality.

2003 September - Botswana begins erecting a fence along its border with Zimbabwe to stem an influx of Zimbabwean illegal immigrants.

2004 March - HIV infection rate falls to 37.5%; Botswana no longer has the world's highest rate of infection.

2004 August - Workers at Botswana's largest diamond-mining company strike over pay, after a court rules that such action is illegal. Some 1,000 workers are sacked.

2004 October - President Mogae secures a second term in a landslide election victory.

2006 December - A group of Bushmen win a four-year legal battle to hold on to their ancestral lands.




Nothing Planned


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