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Governmentrepublic under transition to multiparty democratic rule
CurrencyCommunaute Financiere Africaine franc (XOF); note - responsible authority is the Central Bank of the West African States
Areatotal: 56,785 sq km
water: 2,400 sq km
land: 54,385 sq km
LanguageFrench (official and the language of commerce), Ewe and Mina (the two major African languages in the south), Kabye (sometimes spelled Kabiye) and Dagomba (the two major African languages in the north)
Religionindigenous beliefs 51%, Christian 29%, Muslim 20%

French Togoland became Togo in 1960. General Gnassingbe EYADEMA, installed as military ruler in 1967, is Africa's longest-serving head of state. Despite the facade of multiparty elections instituted in the early 1990s, the government continues to be dominated by President EYADEMA, whose Rally of the Togolese People (RPT) party has maintained power almost continually since 1967. In addition, Togo has come under fire from international organizations for human rights abuses and is plagued by political unrest. Most bilateral and multilateral aid to Togo remains frozen.


Western Africa, bordering the Bight of Benin, between Benin and Ghana
Geographic coordinates 
8 00 N, 1 10 E
Map references 
total: 56,785 sq km
water: 2,400 sq km
land: 54,385 sq km
Area - comparative 
slightly smaller than West Virginia
Land boundaries 
total: 1,647 km
border countries: Benin 644 km, Burkina Faso 126 km, Ghana 877 km
56 km
Maritime claims 
exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
territorial sea: 30 NM
tropical; hot, humid in south; semiarid in north
gently rolling savanna in north; central hills; southern plateau; low coastal plain with extensive lagoons and marshes
Elevation extremes 
lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Mont Agou 986 m
Natural resources 
phosphates, limestone, marble, arable land
Land use 
arable land: 41.37%
permanent crops: 1.84%
other: 56.79% (1998 est.)
Irrigated land 
70 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards 
hot, dry harmattan wind can reduce visibility in north during winter; periodic droughts
Environment - current issues 
deforestation attributable to slash-and-burn agriculture and the use of wood for fuel; water pollution presents health hazards and hinders the fishing industry; air pollution increasing in urban areas
Geography - note 
the country's length allows it to stretch through six distinct geographic regions; climate varies from tropical to savanna


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 and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2002 est.)
Age structure 
0-14 years: 45.1% (male 1,195,052; female 1,187,014)
15-64 years: 52.4% (male 1,351,345; female 1,420,617)
65 years and over: 2.5% (male 56,270; female 75,203) (2002 est.)
Population growth rate 
2.48% (2002 est.)
Birth rate 
36.11 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Death rate 
11.3 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Net migration rate 
0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Sex ratio 
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.75 male(s)/female
total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2002 est.)
Infant mortality rate 
69.32 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)
Life expectancy at birth 
total population: 54.02 years
female: 56.07 years (2002 est.)
male: 52.03 years
Total fertility rate 
5.14 children born/woman (2002 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate 
5.98% (1999 est.)
noun: Togolese (singular and plural)
adjective: Togolese
Ethnic groups 
native African (37 tribes; largest and most important are Ewe, Mina, and Kabre) 99%, European and Syrian-Lebanese less than 1%
indigenous beliefs 51%, Christian 29%, Muslim 20%
French (official and the language of commerce), Ewe and Mina (the two major African languages in the south), Kabye (sometimes spelled Kabiye) and Dagomba (the two major African languages in the north)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 51.7%
male: 67%
female: 37% (1995 est.)


Country name 
conventional long form: Togolese Republic
conventional short form: Togo
local short form: none
former: French Togoland
local long form: Republique Togolaise
Government type 
republic under transition to multiparty democratic rule
Administrative divisions 
5 regions (regions, singular - region); De La Kara, Des Plateaux, Des Savanes, Centrale, Maritime
27 April 1960 (from French-administered UN trusteeship)
National holiday 
Independence Day, 27 April (1960)
multiparty draft constitution approved by High Council of the Republic 1 July 1992; adopted by public referendum 27 September 1992
Legal system 
French-based court system
NA years of age; universal adult
Flag description 
five equal horizontal bands of green (top and bottom) alternating with yellow; there is a white five-pointed star on a red square in the upper hoist-side corner; uses the popular pan-African colors of Ethiopia


Economy - overview 
This small sub-Saharan economy is heavily dependent on both commercial and subsistence agriculture, which provides employment for 65% of the labor force. Some basic foodstuffs must still be imported. Cocoa, coffee, and cotton generate about 40% of export earnings, with cotton being the most significant cash crop despite falling prices on the world market. Political unrest, including private and public sector strikes throughout 1992 and 1993, jeopardized the reform program, shrunk the tax base, and disrupted vital economic activity. The 12 January 1994 devaluation of the XOF currency by 50% provided an important impetus to renewed structural adjustment. In the industrial sector, phosphate mining is by far the most important activity. Togo is the world's fourth largest producer, and geological advantages keep production costs low. The recently privatized mining operation, Office Togolais des Phosphates (OTP), is slowly recovering from a steep fall in prices in the early 1990's, but continues to face the challenge of tough foreign competition, exacerbated by weakening demand. Togo serves as a regional commercial and trade center. It continues to expand its duty-free export-processing zone (EPZ), launched in 1989, which has attracted enterprises from France, Italy, Scandinavia, the US, India, and China and created jobs for Togolese nationals. The government's decade-long effort, supported by the World Bank and the IMF, to implement economic reform measures, encourage foreign investment, and bring revenues in line with expenditures has stalled. Progress depends on following through on privatization, increased openness in government financial operations, progress towards legislative elections, and possible downsizing of the military, on which the regime has depended to stay in place. Lack of large-scale foreign aid, deterioration of the financial sector, energy shortages, and depressed commodity prices continue to constrain economic growth. The takeover of the national power company by a Franco-Canadian consortium in 2000 should ease the energy crisis.
Population below poverty line 
32% (1989 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share 
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 
2.3% (2001 est.)
Labor force 
1.74 million (1996) (1996)
Labor force - by occupation 
agriculture 65%, industry 5%, services 30% (1998 est.)
Unemployment rate 
revenues: $232 million
expenditures: $252 million, including capital expenditures of $NA (1997 est.)
phosphate mining, agricultural processing, cement; handicrafts, textiles, beverages
Industrial production growth rate 
Electricity - production 
97 million kWh (2000)
Electricity - production by source 
fossil fuel: 98%
other: 0% (2000)
hydro: 2%
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption 
525.21 million kWh (2000)
Electricity - imports 
435 million kWh
note: electricity supplied by Ghana (2000)
Agriculture - products 
coffee, cocoa, cotton, yams, cassava (tapioca), corn, beans, rice, millet, sorghum; livestock; fish
$306 million f.o.b. (2001)
Exports - commodities 
cotton, phosphates, coffee, cocoa
Exports - partners 
Benin 12%, Nigeria 9%, Belgium 5%, Ghana 4% (2000)
$420 million f.o.b. (2001)
Imports - commodities 
machinery and equipment, foodstuffs, petroleum products
Imports - partners 
Ghana 26%, France 11%, China 7%, Cote d'Ivoire 7% (2000)
Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XOF); note - responsible authority is the Central Bank of the West African States
Currency code 
Exchange rates 
Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XOF) per US dollar - 741.79 (January 2002), 733.04 (2001), 711.98 (2000), 615.70 (1999), 589.95 (1998), 583.67 (1997); note - from 1 January 1999, the XOF is pegged to the euro at a rate of 655.957 XOF per euro
Fiscal year 
calendar year


Telephones - main lines in use 
25,000 (1997)
Telephones - mobile cellular 
2,995 (1997)
Telephone system 
general assessment: fair system based on a network of microwave radio relay routes supplemented by open-wire lines and a mobile cellular system
domestic: microwave radio relay and open-wire lines for conventional system; cellular system has capacity of 10,000 telephones
international: satellite earth stations - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) and 1 Symphonie
Radio broadcast stations 
AM 2, FM 9, shortwave 4 (1998)
940,000 (1997)
Television broadcast stations 
3 (plus two repeaters) (1997)
73,000 (1997)
Internet country code 
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) 
39 (2005)
Internet users 
50,000 (2002)


total: 525 km
narrow gauge: 525 km 1.000-m gauge (2001)
total: 7,520 km
paved: 2,376 km
unpaved: 5,144 km (1996)
50 km (Mono river)
Ports and harbors 
Kpeme, Lome
9 (2001)
Airports - with paved runways 
total: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2 (2002)
Airports - with unpaved runways 
total: 7
914 to 1,523 m: 5
under 914 m: 2 (2002)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international 
Benin accuses Togo of moving boundary markers and stationing troops in its territory
Illicit drugs 
transit hub for Nigerian heroin and cocaine traffickers; money laundering not a significant problem