Republic of Benin
République du Bénin
Motto: "Fraternité, Justice, Travail" (French)
"Fraternity, Justice, Labour"
Anthem: L’Aube Nouvelle (French)
The Dawn of a New Day
6°28′N 2°36′E / 6.467°N 2.6°E /
112,622 km2 (101st)
43,483 sq mi
$13.014 billion (140th)
▲ 0.437 (low) (163rd)
West African CFA franc
Summer (DST) not observed (UTC+1)
Drives on the
1 Cotonou is the seat of government.
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 and
death rates, lower population and growth
rates, and changes in the distribution of
population by age and sex than would
otherwise be expected.
3 Rank based on 2005 estimate.
Benin (pronounced /bɨˈnɪn/), officially the
Republic of Benin, is a country in Western
Africa. It borders Togo to the west, Nigeria to
the east and Burkina Faso and Niger to the
north; its short coastline to the south leads to
the Bight of Benin. Its size is just over
110,000 km² with a population of almost
8,500,000. Its capital is the Yoruba founded
city of Porto Novo, but the seat of govern-
ment is the Fon city of Cotonou. Benin was
known as Dahomey until 1975.
During the colonial period and at independ-
ence, the country was known as Dahomey. It
was changed in 1975 to the People’s Re-
public of Benin after the body of water on
which the country lies, the Bight of Benin,
which had in turn been name