Statistical information Benin 1990Benin

Map of Benin | Geography | People | Government | Economy | Energy | Communication
Military | Transportation | Transnational Issues | Year:  | More stats

Benin in the World
Benin in the World

Atlas VPN

Benin - Introduction 1990
top of page

Background: Dahomey gained its independence from France in 1960; the name was changed to Benin in 1975. From 1974 to 1989 the country was a socialist state.

Benin - Geography 1990
top of page


Geographic coordinates

Map reference


Land boundaries: 1,989 km total; Burkina 306 km, Niger 266 km, Nigeria 773 km, Togo 644 km

Coastline: 121 km

Maritime claims: Territorial sea:200 nm

Climate: tropical; hot, humid in south; semiarid in north

Terrain: mostly flat to undulating plain; some hills and low mountains


Natural resources: small offshore oil deposits, limestone, marble, timber
Land use

Land use: 12% arable land; 4% permanent crops; 4% meadows and pastures; 35% forest and woodland; 45% other; includes NEGL% irrigated

Irrigated land

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards

Note: recent droughts have severely affected marginal agriculture in north; no natural harbors

Benin - People 1990
top of page

Population: 4,673,964 (July 1990), growth rate 3.3% (1990)

Nationality: noun--Beninese (sing., pl.; adjective--Beninese

Ethnic groups: 99% African (42 ethnic groups, most important being Fon, Adja, Yoruba, Bariba; 5,500 Europeans

Languages: French (official; Fon and Yoruba most common vernaculars in south; at least six major tribal languages in north

Religions: 70% indigenous beliefs, 15% Muslim, 15% Christian

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate

Birth rate: 50 births/1000 population (1990)

Death rate: 16 deaths/1000 population (1990)

Net migration rate: NEGL migrants/1000 population (1990)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: hot, dry, dusty harmattan wind may affect north in winter; deforestation; desertification

Air pollutants

Sex ratio

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 121 deaths/1000 live births (1990)

Life expectancy at birth: 48 years male, 52 years female (1990)

Total fertility rate: 7.1 children born/woman (1990)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Literacy: 25.9%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Benin - Government 1990
top of page

Country name: conventional long form: Republic of Benin

Government type: dropped Marxism-Leninism December 1989; democratic reforms adopted February 1990; transition to multiparty system by 1991 planned

Capital: Porto-Novo (official), Cotonou (de facto)

Administrative divisions: 6 provinces; Atakora, Atlantique, Borgou, Mono, Oueme, Zou

Dependent areas

Independence: 1 August 1960 (from France; formerly Dahomey)

National holiday: National Day, 30 November (1975)

Constitution: 23 May 1977 (nullified 1 March 1990; new constitution to be drafted by April 1990

Legal system: based on French civil law and customary law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: universal at age 18

Executive branch: Chief of State and Head of Government--President Mathieu KEREKOU (since 27 October 1972)

Legislative branch: Army, Navy, Air Force

Judicial branch: Central People's Court (Cour Central Populaire)

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: ACP, AfDB, CEAO, EAMA, ECA, ECOWAS, Entente, FAO, G-77, GATT, IBRD, ICAO, ICO, IDA, IFAD, ILO, IMF, IMO, INTELSAT, INTERPOL, ITU, NAM, Niger River Commission, OAU, OCAM, UN, UNESCO, UPU, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation
In the us: Ambassador Theophile NATA; Chancery at 2,737 Cathedral Avenue NW, Washington DC 20,008; telephone (202) 232-6,656; US--Ambassador Harriet ISOM; Embassy at Rue Caporal Anani Bernard, Cotonou (mailing address is B. P. 2012, Cotonou; telephone p229o 30-06-50

Flag descriptionflag of Benin: green with a red five-pointed star in the upper hoist-side corner

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Benin - Economy 1990
top of page

Economy overview: Benin is one of the least developed countries in the world because of limited natural resources and a poorly developed infrastructure. Agriculture accounts for almost 45% of GDP, employs about 60% of the labor force, and generates a major share of foreign exchange earnings. The industrial sector contributes only about 15% to GDP and employs 2% of the work force. Persistently low prices in recent years have limited hard currency earnings from Benin's major exports of agricultural products and crude oil.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin

Agriculture products: small farms produce 90% of agricultural output; production is dominated by food crops--corn, sorghum, cassava, beans, and rice; cash crops include cotton, palm oil, and peanuts; poultry and livestock output has not kept up with consumption

Industries: palm oil and palm kernel oil processing, textiles, beverages, petroleum

Industrial production growth rate: - 0.7% (1988)

Labor force:
1,900,000 (1987; 60% agriculture, 38% transport, commerce, and public services, less than 2%
industry; 49% of population of working age (1985)

Labor force

Unemployment rate: NA

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Budget: revenues $168 million; expenditures $317 million, including capital expenditures of $97 million (1989)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: calendar year

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

Exports: $226 million (f.o.b., 1988)
Commodities: crude oil, cotton, palm products, cocoa
Partners: FRG 36%, France 16%, Spain 14%, Italy 8%, UK 7%

Imports: $413 million (f.o.b., 1988)
Commodities: foodstuffs, beverages, tobacco, petroleum products, intermediate goods, capital goods, light consumer goods
Partners: France 34%, Netherlands 10%, Japan 7%, Italy 6%, US 5%

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $1.0 billion (December 1989 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (CFAF) per US$1--287.99 (January 1990), 319.01 (1989), 297.85 (1988), 300.54 (1987), 346.30 (1986), 449.26 (1985)

Benin - Energy 1990
top of page

Electricity access

Electricity production

Electricity consumption

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Benin - Communication 1990
top of page

Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Benin - Military 1990
top of page

Military expenditures
Percent of gdp: 1.7% of GDP, or $28.9 million (1988 est.)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Benin - Transportation 1990
top of page

National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 6 total, 5 usable; 1 with permanent-surface runways; none with runways over 2,439 m; 4 with runways 1,220-2,439 m

Airports with paved runways

Airports with unpaved runways





Waterways: navigable along small sections, important only locally

Merchant marine: 1 cargo ship (1,000 GRT or over) of 2,999 GRT/4,407 DWT

Ports and terminals

Benin - Transnational issues 1990
top of page

Disputes international

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs


You found a piece of the puzzle

Please click here to complete it