Kiribati Religion and Languages

By | March 5, 2021

According to franciscogardening, Kiribati is a small island nation located in the central Pacific Ocean. It has a total land area of 811 square kilometers and a population of 117,000 people as of 2020. The official language of Kiribati is English, although I-Kiribati is also widely spoken. The currency of Kiribati is the Kiribati Dollar (KID). The capital city of Kiribati is South Tarawa and its largest city is Bairiki. Kiribati has a long history dating back to ancient times when it was part of the Polynesian culture. Today, Kiribati has a diverse culture that combines elements from both Polynesian and Western cultures. Its most popular tourist attractions include Christmas Island (the world’s largest coral atoll), Kiritimati Island (the world’s largest raised coral atoll), and its stunning beaches such as Abaokoro Beach and Marakei Island Beach.

According to Countryaah, a large part of the population still lives on subsistence farming and single fisheries. A significant part of trade – especially outside the capital – is organized in cooperatives. Almost one third of the population participates in activities related to the cooperative sector. At the same time, the situation in the labor market is deteriorating. In 1988, the government adopted a plan for the resettlement of thousands of people from the thinnest islands.

In 1989, a UN report on global warming and rising water levels as a result of pollution concluded that Kiribati is one of the countries at risk of being completely flooded, unless drastic steps are taken.

In 1991, elections were won by Teatao Teannaki with 46.3% of the vote. This presidential shift was the first since independence.

In early 1993, the country received a $ 300,000 loan from the Asian Development Bank for the implementation of projects in Northern Esporadas, with the aim of increasing the opportunities for agricultural production and tourism in the area.

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President Teannaki’s government was accused of misappropriation of public funds, lost in May 1994 a vote of no confidence and had to withdraw. In July, the opposition coalition Maneaba Te Mauri gained a majority in parliament, and in the September elections, Teburoro Tito was elected president.

Kiribati Population by Religion


At the beginning of the 21st century, the absence of organized political parties and the consequent management of power by a ruling class grouped around unstable formations still constituted the main feature of political life in Kiribati. The major groupings present in the Parliament (Maneaba) were Protect the Maneaba, led by T. Tito, president of the Republic since 1994, the National Progressive Party, which was headed by T. Teannaki, and the Pillars of Truth, directed by H. Tong.

The structural weakness of the political system was accompanied by the chronic condition of poverty in the country, which continued to depend almost completely on international aid. During the first years of the 2000s, the situation remained almost stable, despite a decline in the popularity of President Tito, criticized by the opposition for the poor incisiveness of his work and for the obstacles placed in the way of attempts to break the government monopoly on the media..

In October 2002 the executive was defeated in Parliament on the proposal to change the criteria for the election of deputies, considered by political opponents to be instrumental to the success of Protect the Maneaba in the legislative elections scheduled for the following November. On that occasion, the Tito grouping registered a decline in consensus, but the head of state managed to be reconfirmed in office in the presidential elections of February 2003. Political instability was not overcome and, in March, a vote of no confidence in the government forced Tito to resign. In July, opposition candidate A. Tong was elected president. One of the first steps of the new administration was to re-establish (Nov. 2003) diplomatic relations with Taiwan (whose embassy was opened in January 2004); a sharp deterioration in relations with China followed, which immediately suspended diplomatic relations with Kiribati.