Formerly an overseas province of Portugal, the Cape Verde Islands became an independent Republic in 1975. A set of topographic maps of the islands at varying scales of 1:50,000; 1:75,000 or 1:100,000 was produced between 1928 and 1937 by the Commissão de Cartografía. In 1968, a new 64-sheet 1:25,000 scale topographic series was initiated by the Instituto Geográfico do Exército (IGeoE), Lisbon. The mapping was continued after 1976 through a cooperative agreement between Portugal and Cape Verde. The maps are on UTM projection, International (Hayford) ellipsoid, with 10 m contours.

The official topographic mapping organization in Cape Verde is now the Serviço Geográfico e Cadastro. It has been revising the old Portuguese series using new aerial photography flown by KLM in 1990. Some 1:2,000 and 1:1,000 scale maps of urban areas have also been made.

Soviet military topographic mapping of the Cape Verde is available at the following scale: 1:1,000,000 (4 sheets, complete coverage, published in 1987). This product is available in print, digital raster and digital vector GIS formats from East View Geospatial.

INIDA is developing a GIS facility using ARC/INFO software, and plans to establish a national digital database of topographic and thematic data. All 64 sheets of the old 1:25,000 Portuguese topographic maps have been digitized. IICT expects to update this cartography using satellite imagery and digital orthophotos. A thematic atlas of Ilha de Santiago using SPOT imagery has been in preparation.

Thematic mapping of the islands has been undertaken by the Instituto Nacional de Investigação e Desenvolvimento Agrário (INIDA), Praia, in cooperation with the IICT. Since 1965, these organizations have produced a series of hypsometric, agro-ecological, geological and geomorphological maps. Some soil mapping was also undertaken by IICT in the 1960s.

The islands have a growing tourist trade, and several maps aimed at this market have recently appeared. In 1993, three 1:100,000 scale image maps in pseudo-natural colour based on SPOT satellite imagery and with tourist overprint were produced. In 1999, a tourist map of the archipelago was published by International Travel Maps (ITM), Vancouver, and in late 1999 a 1:200,000 scale map of the islands, and a 1:100,000 scale tourist map of Santo Antão were published by ABKartenverlag.

Population censuses were carried out in the islands in 1970 and 1980 by the Recenciamento Demografico, and some demographic mapping will be incorporated in the Santiago atlas.

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