The Ivory Coast The Ivory Coast is one of Africa’s leading countries in industry and agriculture. This small country is located in West Africa on the Coast of Guinea where it is bordered by Mali and Burkina Faso on the north and by Guinea and Liberia on the west. The land itself is approximately 322,463 sq.kilometers and 124,504 sq.miles in size. With a population of around 12,600,000 people, of which 2,000,000 are foreigners from Burkina Faso and Ghana, the Ivory Coast is known for it’s cultural diversity which started back in 1637 when it became a French Missionary contact. Then, in 1843-1845, it became an official proctrate of France. Thus, in 1893, the Ivory Coast became a French colony and remained part of French West Africa from 1904-1958.
Finally in 1960, independence was gained from the overseas country of France. In the Ivory Coast, which is a Republic, they have a semi-democratic system. The position of president, currently being held by Felix Houphocet-Boigny, is elected to serve 5-year terms. Also, the president can run for re-election as many times as he chooses. For example, the current president was re-elected to serve a seventh term in 1990.
Plus, there is a National Assembly comprised of about 120 people who help to govern the country. The nation has a tremendously stable economy because of the great amount of products that they produce for exporting. The Ivory Coast is the world’s largest cocoa producer and the third largest coffee producer. These products alone bring in more than half of all export earnings. In addition, sugarcane, pineapples, oil palms, rubber, cotton, and bananas are also grown for export.
The major problem of the country is the foreign debt which has grown extremely large due to massive amounts of loans given to the country by France. Plus, this increases taxes. The country’s per capita is $ 740 and it’s GNP (Gross National Product) is $ 8.59 billion.