You are here:
  1. Homepage
  2. » Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina Flag Icon

Bosnia and Herzegovina Country Guide

Explore Bosnia and Herzegovina in Europe

Bosnia and Herzegovina with the capital city Sarajevo is located in Europe (Southeastern Europe, bordering the Adriatic Sea and Croatia). It covers some 51,129 square kilometres (slightly smaller than West Virginia) with 4,590,000 citizens.

Interactive map of Bosnia and Herzegovina

The terrain features mountains and valleys. The average density of population is approximately 90 per km². The notable climate conditions in Bosnia and Herzegovina can be described as hot summers and cold winters with areas of high elevation have short, cool summers and long, severe winters and mild, rainy winters along coast. Potential natural disasters are destructive earthquakes.

To reach someone in Bosnia and Herzegovina dial +387 prior to a number. There are 998,600 installed telephones. And there are 3,257,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks commonly support frequencies of 900 MHz. Websites registered in this country end with the top level domain ".ba". If you want to bring electric equipment on your trip (e.g. laptop power supply), note the local power outlet of 220V - 50Hz.

About the flag and history of Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnia and Herzegovina Flag Icon

A wide medium blue vertical band on the fly side with a yellow isosceles triangle abutting the band and the top of the flag; the remainder of the flag is medium blue with seven full five-pointed white stars and two half stars top and bottom along the hypotenuse of the triangle; the triangle approximates the shape of the country and its three points stand for the constituent peoples - Bosniaks, Croats, and Serbs; the stars represent Europe and are meant to be continuous (thus the half stars at top and bottom); the colors (white, blue, and yellow) are often associated with neutrality and peace, and traditionally are linked with Bosnia.

Bosnia and Herzegovina's declaration of sovereignty in October 1991 was followed by a declaration of independence from the former Yugoslavia on 3 March 1992 after a referendum boycotted by ethnic Serbs. The Bosnian Serbs - supported by neighboring Serbia and Montenegro - responded with armed resistance aimed at partitioning the republic along ethnic lines and joining Serb-held areas to form a "Greater Serbia." In March 1994, Bosniaks and Croats reduced the number of warring factions from three to two by signing an agreement creating a joint Bosniak/Croat Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. On 21 November 1995, in Dayton, Ohio, the warring parties initialed a peace agreement that brought to a halt three years of interethnic civil strife (the final agreement was signed in Paris on 14 December 1995). The Dayton Peace Accords retained Bosnia and Herzegovina''s international boundaries and created a multi-ethnic and democratic government charged with conducting foreign, diplomatic, and fiscal policy. Also recognized was a second tier of government composed of two entities roughly equal in size: the Bosniak/Bosnian Croat Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Bosnian Serb-led Republika Srpska (RS). The Federation and RS governments are responsible for overseeing most government functions. Additionally, the Dayton Accords established the Office of the High Representative (OHR) to oversee the implementation of the civilian aspects of the agreement. The Peace Implementation Council (PIC) at its conference in Bonn in 1997 also gave the High Representative the authority to impose legislation and remove officials, the so-called "Bonn Powers." An original NATO-led international peacekeeping force (IFOR) of 60,000 troops assembled in 1995 was succeeded over time by a smaller, NATO-led Stabilization Force (SFOR). In 2004, European Union peacekeeping troops (EUFOR) replaced SFOR. Currently EUFOR deploys around 600 troops in theater in a policing capacity.

Geography Quick-Facts

SummaryContinent: Europe
Neighbours: Croatia, Montenegro, Serbia
Capital: Sarajevo
Size51,129 square kilometers (km² or sqkm) or 19,741 square miles (mi² or sqmi)
slightly smaller than West Virginia
CurrencyName Marka, Currency Code:BAM
Country Top Level Domain (cTLD).ba
Telephone Country Prefix+387
Mobile Phone Connections3,257,000
Landline Phone Connections998,600

Country Position in World Rankings

Information about single country attributes and how these compare against the rest of the world. The information below is compiled with data from 2013. As such, it may differ a bit to the Information above in the text (which is from 2010).


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Area51,197 (sq km)129

People and Society

Value nameValueWorld Rank
Population3,875,723 128
Population growth rate-0.10 (%)204
Birth rate8.92 (births/1,000 population)210
Death rate9.53 (deaths/1,000 population)56
Net migration rate-0.37 (migrant(s)/1,000 population)130
Maternal mortality rate8.00 (deaths/100,000 live births)156
Infant mortality rate5.97 (deaths/1,000 live births)172
Life expectancy at birth76.12 (years)86
Total fertility rate1.25 (children born/woman)218
Health expenditures11.10 (% of GDP)19
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate0.10 (%)117
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS900 146
HIV/AIDS - deaths100 124
Obesity - adult prevalence rate26.50 (%)47
Children under the age of 5 years underweight1.60 (%)124
Unemployment, youth ages 15-2457.50 (%)3


Value nameValueWorld Rank
GDP (purchasing power parity)32,430,000,000 111
GDP - real growth rate-0.70 (%)193
GDP - per capita (PPP)8,400 130
Labor force2,600,000 110
Unemployment rate43.30 (%)190
Distribution of family income - Gini index36.20 85
Taxes and other revenues45.50 (% of GDP)24
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-3.70 (% of GDP)126
Public debt43.80 (% of GDP)81
Inflation rate (consumer prices)2.20 (%)39
Commercial bank prime lending rate7.14 (%)127
Stock of narrow money4,088,000,000 107
Stock of broad money9,577,000,000 108
Stock of domestic credit10,340,000,000 97
Industrial production growth rate3.10 (%)88
Current account balance-1,362,000,000 121
Exports5,427,000,000 110
Imports10,180,000,000 97
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold3,900,000,000 99
Debt - external9,051,000,000 101


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Electricity - production15,040,000,000 (kWh)81
Electricity - consumption10,170,000,000 (kWh)89
Electricity - exports5,877,000,000 (kWh)27
Electricity - imports2,887,000,000 (kWh)45
Electricity - installed generating capacity4,341,000 (kW)77
Electricity - from fossil fuels44.50 (% of total installed capacity)166
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants55.50 (% of total installed capacity)37
Crude oil - imports4,274 (bbl/day)82
Refined petroleum products - production3,304 (bbl/day)112
Refined petroleum products - consumption27,540 (bbl/day)120
Refined petroleum products - imports23,950 (bbl/day)99
Natural gas - consumption210,000,000 (cu m)101
Natural gas - imports390,000,000 (cu m)69
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy20,140,000 (Mt)83


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Telephones - main lines in use955,900 81
Telephones - mobile cellular3,171,000 124
Internet hosts155,252 77
Internet users1,422,000 85


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Airports25 127
Railways601 (km)107
Roadways22,926 (km)102


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Military expenditures1.40 (% of GDP)105

Data based on CIA facts book 2010 & 2013, wikipedia, national statistical offices and their census releases

List of current world heritage sites

Mehmed Paša Sokolović Bridge in Višegrad
The Mehmed Paša Sokolović Bridge of Višegrad across the Drina River in the east of Bosnia and Herzegovina was built at the end of the 16th century by the court architect Mimar Koca Sinan on the orders of Grand Vizier Mehmed Paša Sokolović. Characteri ...
Old Bridge Area of the Old City of Mostar
The historic town of Mostar, spanning a deep valley of the Neretva River, developed in the 15th and 16th centuries as an Ottoman frontier town and during the Austro-Hungarian period in the 19th and 20th centuries. Mostar has long been known for its o ...