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State

Capital

Burkina Faso

Ouagadougou

fr. Upper Volta

Wagadugu

Currency unit

CFA franc

Connections

Francophonia

Ivory Coast

Islam

Sahel

West Africa

 Politics

 Economics

 Green

 Rights

 Climate

History

This Sahel country came under French control during the 19th century. It was at first attached administratively to Ivory Coast and separated in 1947.

On independence in 1960 it was one of the poorest countries in Africa. Ethnic groups: Mossi, Mande, Hausa, Fulani Tuareg Moré.

A revolution led by Thomas Sankara (assassinated 1987) has claimed to use the principle of basing itself on people's needs rather than on bureaucracy. Some reporters say that this has had some successes in the agricultural sphere where desertification has been reversed in parts of the country. If true, the example should be studied for emulation in the rest of the Sahel.

The name of the country, changed from the colonial name - Upper Volta, means "the country of upright men" .

During colonial times, when the two countries were part of the same government, people from the north migrated into what is now Ivory Coast. On independence Ivorians are claiming they are foreigners. This is a cause of the civil war in Ivory Coast.

Languages

Moré

Tuareg

Fulani (Peulh)

Hausa

French (government)

 History

 Economics

 Green

 Rights

 Climate

Politics

One party state. The improvements in the economy may be jeopardized by the failure to allow democracy. An election was held in 1991 but observers think it was corrupt. Was the head of state responsible for death of his friend the predecessor?

 History

 Politics

 Green

 Rights

 Climate

Economics

Economics based on agriculture and cattle herding. Many of the people are working in Ghana or Ivory Coast as migrant workers.

Some agricultural projects in this country show signs of success. The use of small dams to catch rainfall, the replanting of trees to encourage water retention and other small scale practices have increased agricultural production in an area where production is falling. This seems to be the result of successful peasant organizations, rather than government or World Bank advice.

Cotton is the main cash crop, which suffers from subsidised American cotton driving the price down.

The connections to the coast are via the rail line through Ivory Coast at Abidjan. This reflects the colonial pattern, as a shorter route would be through former British Ghana.

Beef raised in BF is normally sold to Ghana and Ivory Coast. This market is affected by subsidized European exports of beef to West Africa.

An important center for film production in Africa.

 History

 Politics

 Economics

 Rights

 Climate

Green/Ecology

One of the Sahel countries on the southern border of the Sahara. The land is drying up and agriculture is becoming impossible in formerly fertile areas. However, in those parts using small earth dams (diguettes) to protect trees this process is being reversed. This suggests that desertification in this area is the result of human activities rather than climate change.

 History

 Politics

 Economics

 Green

 Climate

Human Rights

Climate effects

One of the possible results of global warming is that the rain belt will move north, making the country wetter.

Last revised 27/4/07


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