(WIPO code: LS) (latest review December 2020)

by SPOOR & FISHER, Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys, Pretoria, South Africa

General Information

Area

30,355 sq. km.

Population

2,149,874 (estimated December 2020).

Capital

Maseru.

Languages

English (official), Sesotho (southern Sotho), Zulu, Xhosa.

Currency

1 loti = 100 lisente; plural: maloti.

Imports

Corn, building materials, clothing, vehicles, machinery, medicines, and petroleum.

Exports

Wool, mohair, wheat, cattle, peas, beans, corn, hides, and baskets.

General Remarks

Basutoland was renamed the Kingdom of Lesotho upon independence from the U.K. in 1966. King Moshoeshoe was exiled in 1990. Constitutional government was restored in 1993 after twenty-three years of military rule. In 1998, violent protests and a military mutiny following a contentious election prompted a brief but bloody South African military intervention. Constitutional reforms have since restored political stability; peaceful parliamentary elections were held in 2002 and 2007. Lesotho is one of three remaining monarchies in Africa.