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Around 10 percent of the population lives in the capital and largest city, Gaborone.
Formerly one of the poorest countries in the world—with a GDP per capita of about US per year in the late 1960s—Botswana has since transformed itself into one of the world's fastest-growing economies.
The Bangwaketse occupied areas to the west, while the Bangwato moved northeast into formerly Kalanga areas.
Under the rule of Makaba II, the Bangwaketse kept vast herds of cattle in well-protected desert areas, and used their military prowess to raid their neighbors.
These proto-Kalanga were closely connected to states in Zimbabwe as well as to the Mapungubwe state.
These states, located outside of current Botswana's borders, appear to have kept massive cattle herds in what is now the Central District—apparently at numbers approaching modern cattle density.
The Bakololo and Amandebele raided repeatedly, and took large numbers of cattle, women, and children from the Batswana—most of whom were driven into the desert or sanctuary areas such as hilltops and caves.
Only after 1843, when the Amandebele moved into western Zimbabwe, did this threat subside.
This equilibrium came to end during the Mfecane period, 1823–1843, when a succession of invading peoples from South Africa entered the country.