Did You Know?
Cote d'Ivoire is 5,935 miles from Tulsa, so chances are you don't know very much about it. Here are a few fun facts to help you learn about the beautiful country:
- Population is 23,518,859. For comparison, the population of Oklahoma is 3.9 million, but the population of Texas is 27.9 million.
- Land area is 124,504 square miles. Roughly the size of Rhode Island, Delaware, Connecticut, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Hawaii, Maryland, West Virginia, and South Carolina...combined. Or slightly less than half the size of Texas.
- It has two capitals. Yamoussoukro is the political capital, but Abidjan is the economic capital and the largest city (roughly 4.4 million people).
- Ivory Coast (the American name for Cote d'Ivoire) is not a reflection of their beaches, but the major export of ivory that happened in the past.
- Official language is French. There are many tribal languages in different villages and regions, but most people speak French. Abidjan is the 3rd largest French speaking population in the world.
- West African CFA Franc is the currency of the country. The exchange rate is constantly fluctuating, but roughly 550 CFA's are equivalent to one US dollar.
- World's largest exporter of cocoa. They provide 1/3 of the cocoa beans for the entire world. This has provided a relatively high income for residents of Cote d'Ivoire compared to other African countries, but can also be difficult when the price of cocoa drops (like it has in 2017).
- Didier Drogba is their most famous athlete. He played many years for the European football club Chelsea and today plays for the Phoenix Rising, an MLS team in the US.
- Life expectancy is low. The average age is only 53.3. The Average American is expected to live 78 years.
- Home to the largest church in the world. Basilica of Our Lady of Peace of Yamoussoukro surpasses even St Peter’s Basilica, with an exterior area of 30,000 square meters (or 322,917 square feet). It can hold 18,000 worshipers, but unfortunately is rarely full.