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Cote d'Ivoire Demographics Profile 2019

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26,260,582 (July 2018 est.)

note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected

Age structure
0-14 years: 39.59% (male 5,213,630 /female 5,182,872)
15-24 years: 19.91% (male 2,613,772 /female 2,615,680)
25-54 years: 34.25% (male 4,577,394 /female 4,416,408)
55-64 years: 3.47% (male 460,048 /female 451,604)
65 years and over: 2.78% (male 325,510 /female 403,664) (2018 est.)
Dependency ratios
total dependency ratio: 83.8 (2015 est.)
youth dependency ratio: 78.5 (2015 est.)
elderly dependency ratio: 5.3 (2015 est.)
potential support ratio: 18.9 (2015 est.)
Median age
total: 19.9 years (2018 est.)
male: 20 years
female: 19.8 years
Population growth rate
2.3% (2018 est.)
Birth rate
30.1 births/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Death rate
8.4 deaths/1,000 population (2018 est.)
Net migration rate
1.3 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2018 est.)
urban population: 51.2% of total population (2019)
rate of urbanization: 3.38% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Major cities - population
231,000 YAMOUSSOUKRO (capital) (2018), 5.059 million ABIDJAN (seat of government) (2019)
Sex ratio
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.81 male(s)/female
total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2018 est.)
Mother's mean age at first birth
19.8 years (2011/12 est.)

note: median age at first birth among women 25-29

Infant mortality rate
total: 62.6 deaths/1,000 live births (2018 est.)
male: 70.6 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 54.4 deaths/1,000 live births
Life expectancy at birth
total population: 60.1 years (2018 est.)
male: 58 years
female: 62.4 years
Total fertility rate
3.83 children born/woman (2018 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate
23.3% (2018)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate
2.6% (2018 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS
460,000 (2018 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths
16,000 (2018 est.)
Drinking water source
improved: urban: 93.1% of population
rural: 68.8% of population
total: 81.9% of population
unimproved: urban: 6.9% of population
rural: 31.2% of population
total: 18.1% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility access
improved: urban: 32.8% of population (2015 est.)
rural: 10.3% of population (2015 est.)
total: 22.5% of population (2015 est.)
unimproved: urban: 67.2% of population (2015 est.)
rural: 89.7% of population (2015 est.)
total: 77.5% of population (2015 est.)
Major infectious diseases
degree of risk: very high (2016)
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever (2016)
vectorborne diseases: malaria, dengue fever, and yellow fever (2016)
water contact diseases: schistosomiasis (2016)
animal contact diseases: rabies (2016)
respiratory diseases: meningococcal meningitis (2016)
noun: Ivoirian(s)
adjective: Ivoirian
Ethnic groups
Akan 28.9%, Voltaique or Gur 16.1%, Northern Mande 14.5%, Kru 8.5%, Southern Mande 6.9%, unspecified 0.9%, non-Ivoirian 24.2% (2014 est.)
Muslim 42.9%, Catholic 17.2%, Evangelical 11.8%, Methodist 1.7%, other Christian 3.2%, animist 3.6%, other religion 0.5%, none 19.1% (2014 est.)

note: the majority of foreign migrant workers are Muslim (72.7%) and Christian (17.7%)

Demographic profile

Cote d’Ivoire’s population is likely to continue growing for the foreseeable future because almost 60% of the populace is younger than 25, the total fertility rate is holding steady at about 3.5 children per woman, and contraceptive use is under 20%. The country will need to improve education, health care, and gender equality in order to turn its large and growing youth cohort into human capital. Even prior to 2010 unrest that shuttered schools for months, access to education was poor, especially for women. As of 2015, only 53% of men and 33% of women were literate. The lack of educational attainment contributes to Cote d’Ivoire’s high rates of unskilled labor, adolescent pregnancy, and HIV/AIDS prevalence.

Following its independence in 1960, Cote d’Ivoire’s stability and the blossoming of its labor-intensive cocoa and coffee industries in the southwest made it an attractive destination for migrants from other parts of the country and its neighbors, particularly Burkina Faso. The HOUPHOUET-BOIGNY administration continued the French colonial policy of encouraging labor immigration by offering liberal land ownership laws. Foreigners from West Africa, Europe (mainly France), and Lebanon composed about 25% of the population by 1998.

Ongoing economic decline since the 1980s and the power struggle after HOUPHOUET-BOIGNY’s death in 1993 ushered in the politics of "Ivoirite," institutionalizing an Ivoirian identity that further marginalized northern Ivoirians and scapegoated immigrants. The hostile Muslim north-Christian south divide snowballed into a 2002 civil war, pushing tens of thousands of foreign migrants, Liberian refugees, and Ivoirians to flee to war-torn Liberia or other regional countries and more than a million people to be internally displaced. Subsequently, violence following the contested 2010 presidential election prompted some 250,000 people to seek refuge in Liberia and other neighboring countries and again internally displaced as many as a million people. By July 2012, the majority had returned home, but ongoing inter-communal tension and armed conflict continue to force people from their homes.

French (official), 60 native dialects of which Dioula is the most widely spoken
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 43.1%
male: 53.1%
female: 32.5% (2015 est.)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)
total: 10 years
male: 11 years
female: 9 years (2016)
Education expenditures
4.4% of GDP (2017)
Maternal mortality rate
617 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight
12.8% (2016)
Health expenditures
4.4% (2016)
Physicians density
0.23 physicians/1,000 population (2014)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate
10.3% (2016)

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on December 7, 2019

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