Burkina Faso at a glance

Location Lies on Greenwich meridian, between 9°N and 15°N

Neighbouring countries Clockwise from north – Mali, Niger, Benin, Togo,Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire

Size 274,200km²

Climate Hot. The dry season runs from October to February, with temperatures of 29°C in October–November, falling to the year-round low of 25°C in January, before beginning the ascent to 32°C from March to May, although temperatures in the north can reach beyond 45°C. The rainy season runs intermittently from June to September, with heaviest rainfalls in August.

Status Parliamentary republic

Population 16.7 million (2011)

Capital Ouagadougou (1.5 million)

Other main towns Banfora, Bobo-Dioulasso (second city), Dori, Fada N’Gourma, Gaoua, Gorom-Gorom, Kaya, Koudougou, Ouahigouya, Po, Yako

Life expectancy 53.7 years

GDP US$8.6 billion

Languages French is the official language; Moore, Dioula and Fulfulde are national languages; there are dozens more local languages

Religion Animist; Muslim; Christian

Currency Communaute Financiere d’Afrique (CFA) franc, also used by Benin, Guinea-Bissau, Cote d’Ivoire, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo and pegged at 656f to the euro (for up-to-date rates, go to www.xe.com)

National airline and airport Air Burkina, Ouagadougou International Airport

International telephone code +226

Time GMT

Electricity 220V

Weights and measures metric

Flag Two horizontal bands, of red and green, united by a fi ve-pointed gold star in the middle

National motto Unity, Progress, Justice

Public holidays 1 January (New Year), 3 January (Soulevement Populaire, also known as SOUL POP), 8 March (Women’s Day), March/April (Easter Monday), 1 May (Worker’s Day), May (Ascension Thursday), 5 August (Proclamation of Independence/National Day), 15 August (Assumption), 1 November (All Saints’ Day), 11 December (Proclamation of the Republic), 25 December (Christmas Day).

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