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Low plains rise to central highlands bisected by Great Rift Valley; fertile plateau in west


Varies from tropical along coast to arid in interior


Nationality: Kenyan(s) 
Population: 45,010,056 (July 2014 est.) Note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS
Languages: English (official), Kiswahili (official), numerous indigenous languages


Christian 82.5% (Protestant 47.4%, Catholic 23.3%, other 11.8%), Muslim 11.1%, Traditionalists 1.6%, other 1.7%, none 2.4%, unspecified 0.7% (2009 census) 


Kenya has been hampered by corruption and by reliance upon several primary goods whose prices have remained low. Low infrastructure investment threatens Kenya's long-term position as the largest East African economy, although the Kenyatta administration has prioritized infrastructure development. International financial lenders and donors remain important to Kenya's economic growth and development. Unemployment is high at around 40%. The country has chronic budget deficits. 

Living Conditions

The majority of Kenyans live in rural areas where electricity and running water are often not available, and roads are not paved. Homes are constructed of waddle and daub (woven sticks and mud) with thatched roofs. Wealthier people generally live closer to towns and have access to electricity and running water. Their homes are usually constructed of stone or brick. A growing number of Kenyans (about 25 percent) live in cities. Nairobi is by far Kenya's largest city.



US Military Presence/Support

The United States provides equipment and training to Kenyan security forces, both civilian and military. Kenya is a significant recipient of U.S. foreign assistance. The U.S. assistance strategy is built around four strategic objectives for U.S. policy: (1) strengthen democratic institutions; (2) spur economic growth, trade and investment; (3) advance peace and security; and (4) promote opportunity and development.





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