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Ivory Coast Country Guide

Explore Ivory Coast in Africa

Ivory Coast with the capital city Yamoussoukro is located in Africa (Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean). It covers some 322,460 square kilometres (slightly larger than New Mexico) with 18,373,000 citizens.

Interactive map of Ivory Coast

The topography includes mostly flat to undulating plains with mountains in northwest. The average density of population is approximately 57 per km². The notable climate conditions in Ivory Coast can be described as tropical along coast, semiarid in far north with three seasons - warm and dry (November to March), hot and dry (March to May), hot and wet (June to October). Possible natural disasters include coast has heavy surf and no natural harbors or during the rainy season torrential flooding is possible.

To reach someone in Ivory Coast dial +225 prior to a number. There are 282,100 installed telephones. And there are 13,346,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks commonly support frequencies of 900 MHz. Websites registered in this country end with the top level domain ".ci". 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 Ivory Coast

Ivory Coast Flag Icon

Three equal vertical bands of orange (hoist side), white, and green; orange symbolizes the land (savannah) of the north and fertility, white stands for peace and unity, green represents the forests of the south and the hope for a bright future note: similar to the flag of Ireland, which is longer and has the colors reversed - green (hoist side), white, and orange; also similar to the flag of Italy, which is green (hoist side), white, and red; design was based on the flag of France.

Close ties to France following independence in 1960, the development of cocoa production for export, and foreign investment all made Cote d''Ivoire one of the most prosperous of the West African states but did not protect it from political turmoil. In December 1999, a military coup - the first ever in Cote d''Ivoire's history - overthrew the government. Junta leader Robert GUEI blatantly rigged elections held in late 2000 and declared himself the winner. Popular protest forced him to step aside and brought Laurent GBAGBO into power. Ivorian dissidents and disaffected members of the military launched a failed coup attempt in September 2002 that developed into a rebellion and then a civil war. The war ended in 2003 with a cease fire that left the country divided with the rebels holding the north, the government the south, and peacekeeping forces a buffer zone between the two. In March 2007, President GBAGBO and former New Forces rebel leader Guillaume SORO signed an agreement in which SORO joined GBAGBO''s government as prime minister and the two agreed to reunite the country by dismantling the buffer zone, integrating rebel forces into the national armed forces, and holding elections. Difficulties in preparing electoral registers delayed balloting until 2010. In November 2010, Alassane Dramane OUATTARA won the presidential election over GBAGBO, but GBAGBO refused to hand over power, resulting in a five-month stand-off. In April 2011, after widespread fighting, GBAGBO was formally forced from office by armed OUATTARA supporters with the help of UN and French forces. Several thousand UN peacekeepers and several hundred French troops remain in Cote d''Ivoire to support the transition process. OUATTARA is focused on rebuilding the country''s infrastructure and military after the five months of post-electoral fighting and faces ongoing threats from GBAGBO supporters, many of whom have sought shelter in Ghana. GBAGBO is in The Hague awaiting trial for crimes against humanity.

Geography Quick-Facts

SummaryContinent: Africa
Neighbours: Liberia, Ghana, Guinea, Burkina Faso, Mali
Capital: Yamoussoukro
Size322,460 square kilometers (km² or sqkm) or 124,502 square miles (mi² or sqmi)
slightly larger than New Mexico
CurrencyName Franc, Currency Code:XOF
Country Top Level Domain (cTLD).ci
Telephone Country Prefix+225
Mobile Phone Connections13,346,000
Landline Phone Connections282,100

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
Area322,463 (sq km)69

People and Society

Value nameValueWorld Rank
Population22,400,835 54
Population growth rate2.00 (%)51
Birth rate29.83 (births/1,000 population)44
Death rate9.80 (deaths/1,000 population)54
Maternal mortality rate400.00 (deaths/100,000 live births)26
Infant mortality rate61.66 (deaths/1,000 live births)23
Life expectancy at birth57.66 (years)198
Total fertility rate3.73 (children born/woman)44
Health expenditures5.30 (% of GDP)126
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate3.40 (%)20
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS450,000 16
HIV/AIDS - deaths36,000 12
Obesity - adult prevalence rate6.20 (%)149
Children under the age of 5 years underweight29.40 (%)16
Education expenditures4.60 (% of GDP)90


Value nameValueWorld Rank
GDP (purchasing power parity)41,010,000,000 103
GDP - real growth rate9.80 (%)11
GDP - per capita (PPP)1,800 196
Labor force8,970,000 53
Distribution of family income - Gini index41.50 53
Investment (gross fixed)12.10 (% of GDP)144
Taxes and other revenues17.80 (% of GDP)179
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-7.10 (% of GDP)188
Public debt60.80 (% of GDP)46
Inflation rate (consumer prices)1.40 (%)23
Central bank discount rate4.25 (%)85
Commercial bank prime lending rate4.30 (%)165
Stock of narrow money7,239,000,000 89
Stock of broad money11,010,000,000 104
Stock of domestic credit6,773,000,000 111
Market value of publicly traded shares7,099,000,000 77
Industrial production growth rate4.50 (%)67
Current account balance-1,080,000,000 115
Exports10,990,000,000 92
Imports8,406,000,000 106
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold4,515,000,000 96
Debt - external4,742,000,000 120


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Electricity - production5,533,000,000 (kWh)116
Electricity - consumption3,576,000,000 (kWh)129
Electricity - exports484,000,000 (kWh)62
Electricity - installed generating capacity1,222,000 (kW)118
Electricity - from fossil fuels50.60 (% of total installed capacity)157
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants49.40 (% of total installed capacity)41
Crude oil - production45,000 (bbl/day)62
Crude oil - exports46,340 (bbl/day)47
Crude oil - imports70,610 (bbl/day)52
Crude oil - proved reserves250,000,000 (bbl)59
Refined petroleum products - production70,870 (bbl/day)82
Refined petroleum products - consumption24,630 (bbl/day)125
Refined petroleum products - exports49,810 (bbl/day)58
Refined petroleum products - imports3,101 (bbl/day)167
Natural gas - production1,600,000,000 (cu m)61
Natural gas - consumption1,600,000,000 (cu m)81
Natural gas - proved reserves28,320,000,000 (cu m)71
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy5,936,000 (Mt)119


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Telephones - main lines in use268,200 124
Telephones - mobile cellular17,344,000 51
Internet hosts9,115 137
Internet users967,300 103


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Airports27 123
Railways660 (km)104
Roadways80,000 (km)58
Waterways980 (km)67


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Military expenditures1.50 (% of GDP)103

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

List of current world heritage sites

Comoé National Park
One of the largest protected areas in West Africa, this park is characterized by its great plant diversity. Due to the presence of the Comoé river, it contains plants which are normally only found much farther south, such as shrub savannahs and patch ...
Historic Town of Grand-Bassam
The first capital of Côte d’Ivoire, the Historic Town of Grand-Bassam, is an example of a late 19th- and early 20th-century colonial town planned with quarters specializing in commerce, administration, housing for Europeans and for Africans. The site ...
Mount Nimba Strict Nature Reserve
Located on the borders of Guinea, Liberia and Côte d’Ivoire, Mount Nimba rises above the surrounding savannah. Its slopes are covered by dense forest at the foot of grassy mountain pastures. They harbour an especially rich flora and fauna, with endem ...
Taï National Park
This park is one of the last major remnants of the primary tropical forest of West Africa. Its rich natural flora, and threatened mammal species such as the pygmy hippopotamus and 11 species of monkeys, are of great scientific interest. ...