COTE D' IVORY (IVORY COAST)
Coat of Arms
President Alassane Ouattara
»322,463 km2 (69th)
» Per capita -$1,938
» Per capita -$1,302
»West African CFA franc (XOF)
Ivory Coast officially the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire (French: République de Côte d’Ivoire), is a country in West Africa.
Ivory Coast’s de jure capital is Yamoussoukro and the biggest city is the port city of Abidjan.
Prior to its colonization by Europeans, Ivory Coast was home to several states, including Gaiman, the Kong Empire, and Baoulé.
There were two Anyi kingdoms, Indénié and Sanwi, which attempted to retain their separate identity through the French colonial period and after independence.
Ivory Coast became a protectorate of France in 1843–44 and was later formed into a French colony in 1893 amid the European scramble for Africa. Ivory Coast achieved independence in 1960, led by Félix Houphouët-Boigny, who ruled the country until 1993.
It maintained close political and economic association with its West African neighbours, while at the same time maintaining close ties to the West, especially France.
Ivory Coast is a republic with a strong executive power invested in its president.
Through the production of coffee and cocoa, the country was an economic powerhouse in West Africa during the 1960s and 1970s. Ivory Coast went through an economic crisis in the 1980s, contributing to a period of political and social turmoil.
The 21st-century Ivorian economy is largely market-based and still relies heavily on agriculture, with smallholder cash crop production being dominant.
Ivory Coast has, for the region, a relatively high income per capita (USD 1014.4 in 2013 ) and plays a key role in transit trade for neighboring, landlocked countries.
Ivory Coast is the largest economy in the West African Economic and Monetary Union, constituting 40 percent of the monetary union’s total GDP.
In 2009, the cocoa bean farmers earned $2.53 billion for cocoa exports and is expected to produce 630,000 metric tons in 2013. According to The Hershey Company, the price of cocoa beans are expected to rise dramatically in upcoming years.
The Ivory Coast also has 100,000 rubber farmers which earned a total of $105 million in 2012.
The maintenance of close ties to France since independence in 1960, diversification of agriculture for export, and encouragement of foreign investment, have been factors in the economic growth of Ivory Coast.
In recent years Ivory Coast has been subject to greater competition and falling prices in the global marketplace for its primary agricultural crops: coffee and cocoa.
Ivory Coast’s tourism industry has developed significantly since the early 1970s.
The country had 11,374 beds in 7,786 hotel rooms and a 70% occupancy rate in 1997. In 1998, there were 301,039 arriving tourists, including more than 73,000 from France.
Beaches, tourist villages, and photo safaris through wildlife preserves are some of the main attractions.
Visas are not required for stays of less than 91 days, though a vaccination certificate for yellow fever is required from all foreign visitors. In 2002, the US Department of State estimated the average cost of staying in Abidjan at $160 per day, compared to Yamoussoukro at $98
- Fine beaches, tourist villages and wildlife preserves are the principal attractions of Côte d’Ivoire.
- Taï National Park has the largest tropical rainforest in West Africa.
Comoë National Park is the biggest and best-known national park in Côte d’Ivoire.
- It has plenty of wildlife including birds, elephants, giraffes, lions, monkeys and antelopes.