Cote D

’ivoire Essay, Research Paper

Ryan Ballard

2nd Hour Econ.


Cote d Iviore

Statistical Survey of Economic Data: Cote d Ivoire U.S. Ghana

Real GDP: $11.9 billion $9.255 trillion $35.5 billion

Per Capita GDP: $720 $33,900 $1,900

Economic Growth: 5.1% 4.1% 4.3%

Real GDP Growth Rate: 1.2% 3.1% 4.3%

Inflation Rate: 4.4% 2.2% 12.8%

Unemployment Rate: (NA in all sources) 6% 20%

Trade Balance: $2 billion $14.5 billion $1.39 billion

Value of Currency Unit in Terms of the U.S. Dollar: 1CFAF=$647.25 1 Cedi=$3,466

Leading Export: Cocoa agricultural goods gold/cocoa

Leading Import: Consumer Foods crude oil capitol equipment

Life Expectancy: 45.15 years 75.8 years 42.2 years

Infant Mortality Rate: 95.06 deaths/ 1,000 live births 8.36/1000 98/1000

Literacy Rate: 48.5% 97.9% 60%

Debt: $14.3 billion $6 billion

Official Language: French English English/ African Tongue

Military Manpower- fit for military services: 1,952,882 2,629,954

Major Environmental Issue(s): Deforestation (most of the country s forests, once the largest in West Africa, have been cleared by the timber industry); water pollution


Life in Cote d Ivoire

Living conditions in Cote d Ivoire aren t the best. In fact, they are borderline horrible. But they are getting better. One way they are getting better is the country is finally starting to get out of debt, little by little. The government managed to decrease the debt by $1.3 million from 1997 to 1998. Also, several oil and gas fields were discovered recently. This discovery is a huge profit maker. It will help in the fight to get out of debt. Another reason living conditions are improving is that the literacy rate is slightly going up, thanks mainly to the new secondary schools that were built in 1998.

All those improvements are great for the country, but the fact still remains that living conditions are not very good in Cote d Ivoire. Life expectancy is only 43 years for males and only 46 for females. That is horrendous. Also, what once used to be the most vast forest area in West Africa is being plowed down every day because lumber companies make a huge profit off the exotic wood that the tropical forests posses. Thirdly, a major export of Cote d Ivoire is heroin and cocaine. These drugs are exported to America, southern Asia, Latin America, and Europe. Heroin and cocaine are illegal in most countries that they are exported to from Cote d Ivoire. Lastly, there are only 900,000 televisions in the entire country. This number gives an idea of the poverty rate. Even the people considered to be in poverty in the U.S. have at least a television, some even cable television.

Overall, Cote d Ivoire is not unlike most other Western Africa countries, high illiteracy rate, lots of debt, high population per square mile, and a lot of exports that cant be found in any other part of the world. Although living conditions are better than most other African countries because of the money it gets from France.

Recommendations for the Future

My biggest recommendation I have for Cote d Ivoire is to get out of debt. It will take at least eight years to do, but it is possible. First of all, take all the profit you get from the new found oil and gas fields and put it towards schooling and medical services. The money put toward education will produce smarter people and a higher literacy rate, which is always good. The money put towards medical services will raise life expectancy so the people actually have a chance to do something with their lives. Another way to get out of debt is to charge a higher tax on your valuable exports, such as coffee cocoa and lumber. Use this money to start paying off some of your debt. Another suggestion I have to take some spending out of the military. The country has no international disputes and is unlikely to get into any if you keep your alliances with France, Nigeria, and Ghana.

One strength that must be utilized is your main exports, coffee, cocoa, and exotic lumber, which cannot be found in many other countries. As I said before, raise the taxes on these products. You basically have a monopoly on these goods. The new gas and oil fields taxes should not be raised because countries can get it at a better price in other paces in the world. Finally, you should take advantage of your great location. The country has beautiful beaches, a large coral reef region, and a few large costal cities. Use those large costal cities as tourist spots. Build hotels, casinos, restaurants, and a shopping district. Whatever it takes to bring in more revenue.

My prediction for the future is a slow, gradual climb up the scale of wealth. It will not reach anywhere near countries such as France or China, but it will standout as on of the most respected in Africa. Inflation will go down slowly but illiteracy rate will stay relatively the same. Life expectancy will go up with the discovery of new immunizations. Overall, Cote d Ivoire will improve tremendously over the next thirty years and will become an African power, yet still not up to most countries standards.


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