Republic of Benin

République du Bénin

Political Status: Independent Republic of Dahomey established August 1, 1960; military regime established October 26, 1972, becoming Marxist one-party system 1972–1975; name changed to People's Republic of Benin on November 30, 1975; name changed further to Republic of Benin on February 28, 1990, by National Conference of Active Forces of the Nation, which also revoked constitution of August 1977; multiparty constitution approved by popular referendum on December 2, 1990.

Area: 43,483 sq. mi. (112,622 sq. km.).

Population: 6,752,569 (2002C); 7,472,000 (2004E).

Major Urban Centers (1994E): PORTO NOVO (200,000), Cotonou (750,000), Djougou (132,000), Parakou (120,000).

Official Language: French.

Monetary Unit: CFA Franc (market rate July 1, 2005: 541.80 francs = $1US). (The CFA franc, previously pegged to the French franc, is now permanently pegged to the euro ...

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