Often called the “Jewel of West Africa”, Ivory Coast has been a model of economic prosperity and political stability for its neighboring African countries since its independence in 1960. In the fifteenth century, foreign merchants in search of ivory named the region the Ivory Coast for its abundance of the natural resource.
Ivory Coast e occupies approximately 124,500 square miles (322,460 square kilometers), an area slightly larger than New Mexico. Located on the south coast of West Africa, Ivory Coast borders the North Atlantic Ocean, with Liberia and Guinea on the west; Mali and Burkina Faso on the north; and Ghana on the east. The country is made up of three distinct geographic regions: the southeast is marked by coastal lagoons; the southern region, especially the southwest, is densely forested; and the northern region, called the savannah zone.
The region, and then the country, was originally known in English as “Ivory Coast”. In October 1985, the government officially changed the name of the country to Ivory Coast in all languages. Despite the Ivorian government’s request, the English translation “Ivory Coast” is still frequently used in English.
Prior to its colonization by Europeans, Ivory Coast was home to several states, including Gyaaman, the Kong Empire, and Baoulé. There were two Anyi kingdoms, Indénié and Sanwi, which attempted to retain their separate identity through the French colonial period and after Ivory Coast’s independence. An 1843–1844 treaty made Ivory Coast a protectorate of France and in 1893, it became a French colony as part of the European scramble for Africa. Ivory Coast became independent on 7 August 1960.
Several ethnic groups make up the population: Akan 42.1%, Voltaiques or Gur 17.6%, Northern Mandes 16.5%, Krous 11%, Southern Mandes 10%, other 2.8% (includes 30,000 Lebanese and 45,000 French). 77% of the population are considered Ivoirians. They represent several different peoples and language groups with 4% of the population being of non-African ancestry. The native born population is roughly split into three groups of Muslim, Christian (primarily Roman Catholic) and animist.
Since Ivory Coast has established itself as one of the most successful West African nations, about 20% of the population (about 3.4 million) consists of workers from neighbouring Liberia, Burkina Faso and Guinea.Many are French, Lebanese, Vietnamese and Spanish citizens, as well as Protestant missionaries from the United States and Canada.
In November 2004, around 10,000 French and other foreign nationals evacuated Ivory Coast due to attacks from pro-government youth militias. Aside from French nationals, there are native-born descendants of French settlers who arrived during the country’s colonial period.It is estimated that approximately 36 percent of the population is illiterate.
French is the national language, and English is taught as a secondary language in secondary schools. An estimated 65 languages are spoken in the country. One of the most common is Dyula, which acts as a trade language as well as a language commonly spoken by the Muslim population.There are about fifty languages and dialects in total. Most people speak at least two languages.Fifty percent of the population speaks Fon; other important languages include Yoruba, Aja, Mina, Goun, Bariba, Dendi, Ditamarri, Nateni, and Fulfulde.
Despite economic hardship in the 1980s and early 1990s, Ivory Coast is still the most prosperous of the tropic African nations, primarily because of its diversified export goods, close ties to France, and foreign investment. Ivory Coast is among the world’s largest producers and exporters of coffee, cocoa beans, and palm oil. Consequently, the economy is highly sensitive to fluctuations in international prices for these products and to weather conditions. Despite attempts by the government to diversify the economy, it is still largely dependent on agriculture. The recent global crisis has hit the country as it has the rest of Africa but strong export trading has enabled the country to retain a level that its neighbors have been unable to.
The climate is generally warm and humid and is, overall, transitional from equatorial to tropical. Seasons are more clearly distinguishable by rainfall and wind direction than by temperature. Continental and maritime air masses, following the apparent movement of the sun from north to south, determine the cycle of the seasons that is associated with heat and cold farther from the equator.
During the first half of the year, the warm maritime air mass pushes northward across Ivory Coast in response to the movement of the sun. Ahead of it, a low pressure belt, or intertropical front, brings warm air, rain, and prevailing winds from the southwest. As the solar cycle reverses at midyear, the continental air mass moves southward over the nation, permitting the dry northeast harmattan to dominate. Surface winds are gentle, seldom exceeding fifteen to twenty kilometers per hour.
Two climatic zones are created by the alternating wind patterns. In the north, tropical conditions delineate two major seasons. Heavy rains fall between June and October, averaging 110 centimeters annually. Along the coast, equatorial conditions prevail. Some rain falls in most months, with an average of 200 centimeters annually, but four seasons are generally distinguishable. Heavy rains fall between May and July in most years, and shorter rains during August and September. The minor dry season still brings sparse rainfall during October and November, followed by the major dry season from December to April.
The Ivoirian economy is largely market-based and depends heavily on the agricultural sector. Between 60% and 70% of the Ivoirian people are engaged in some form of agricultural activity. The economy performed poorly in the 1980s and early 1990s, and high population growth coupled with economic decline resulted in a steady fall in living standards.
In March 1983, President Félix Houphouët-Boigny made Yamoussoukro the political and administrative capital of Côte d’Ivoire, as the city was his birthplace. This marked the fourth movement of the country’s capital city in a century. Côte d’Ivoire’s previous capital cities were Grand-Bassam (1893), Bingerville (1900), and Abidjan (1933).
Yamoussoukro is also the site of what is claimed to be the largest Christian place of worship on Earth: The Basilica of Our Lady of Peace of Yamoussoukro, consecrated by Pope John Paul II on 10 September 1990. Also noteworthy are the Kossou Dam, the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Foundation, the PDCI-RDA House, the various schools of the Polytechnic Institute, the Town Hall, the Protestant Temple, the Mosque, and the Palace of Hosts.
Abidjan is the economic and former official capital of Côte d’Ivoire. As of 2011 it was the largest city in the nation and the third-largest French-speaking city in the world, after Paris, and Kinshasa but before Montreal. Abidjan lies on the south-east coast of the country in the Gulf of Guinea, near the Ébrié Lagoon. The business district Le Plateau is the centre of the city, along with Cocody’, Deux Plateaux (the wealthiest neighborhood and a hubbub for diplomats), and the slum of Adjamé on the north shore of the lagoon. Treichville and Marcory lie to the south, Commune d’ Attecoube by its extension to Locodjro and Abobo Doume and Yopougon to the west, and Gbagba and N’Gbotroya (Locodjro) called today Boulay Island in the middle of the lagoon.
Main expatriate destination cities:
Bouaké (or Bwake) is the second largest city in Côte d’Ivoire and It is the main urban settlement of the Bouaké Department with a population exceeding 1.2 million, in the Vallée du Bandama Region. The city is located in the central part of Côte d’Ivoire about 50 kilometres (31 mi) northeast of Lake Kossou, the country’s largest lake, some 350 kilometres (220 mi) north of Abidjan on the Abidjan-Niger Railway and about 100 kilometres (62 mi) northeast of Yamoussoukro, the capital of Côte d’Ivoire.
Bouaké is a centre for the Baoulé people and is known for its crafts. The economy is based on the coton industry. The city largely grew from the 1970s after the construction of the power station at Kossou Lake flooded land to the west of the city. Bouaké is known for its large carnival and market and for the St Michael’s Cathedral. The city has a large airport located north-west of the city with a 3,300 metres runway. Manchester City F.C defender Kolo Touré and his brothers Yaya Touré and Ibrahim Touré were born in Bouaké.
Main foreign investors:
Direct foreign investment plays a key role in the Ivoirian economy, accounting for between 40% and 45% of total capital in Ivoirian firms. France is overwhelmingly the most important foreign investor. In recent years, French investment has accounted for about one-quarter of the total capital in Ivoirian enterprises, and between 55% and 60% of the total stock of foreign investment capital.
Historically, Côte d’Ivoire has had strong economic ties with France. During the 1990s, Côte d’Ivoire’s principal markets for exports were France and the Netherlands, which purchased approximately one-third of its total exports, a trend that continues today. The United States is the third largest export market, with Italy following. Current statistics indicate that Côte d’Ivoire exports $3.9 billion worth of goods annually, primarily cocoa, coffee, tropical woods, petroleum, cotton, bananas, pineapples, palm oil, cotton, and fish. France, which provides one-third of Côte d’Ivoire’s imports, is the country’s largest supplier.
The United States, Italy, and Germany each supply about 5 percent of the country’s imports, which include food, consumer goods, capital goods, fuel, and transport equipment. Due to the 1999 coup, Côte d’Ivoire received only limited assistance from international financial institutions during that year, and the European Union stopped its assistance programs altogether.
As with all countries within Africa, Ivory presents a unique set of challenges for expatriates : heavy traffic in the capital city, uncollected rubbish, poor telephone service, as well as the country’s social institutions and infrastructure can prove frustrating for an expatriate.
Credit card use in Cote d’Ivoire is limited, particularly outside Abidjan and Yamoussoukro, but credit card fraud is an increasing problem. Business fraud is rampant and the perpetrators often target foreigners.
Whilein Cote d’Ivoire, individuals with disabilities should be advised that there are almost no accommodations made for individuals with disabilities in Cote d’Ivoire.
Abidjan has a poor public transportation system; if you choose to travel by bus despite the risks, the “Express” line is believed to be the safest and most reliable. In Abidjan, taxis are readily available, inexpensive (metered), but poorly maintained and notorious for not respecting the rules of the road. There have been reports of robberies in Orange taxis, widely thought to be the most secure form of public transportation. Communal taxis (“woro-woros”), used only within the limits of each commune, are not metered and are dangerous. Don’t use local vans (“Gbaka”) because they are frequently involved in accidents.
In Côte d’Ivoire, children are highly valued and play a very special role in perpetuating the family and culture and providing care for other family members. Girls are taught by their mothers, and boys learn from their fathers and other male figures. Overall, children are the responsibility of the community, and when primary caregivers are not available the community creates a system for caring for children. Parental and community goals for children are centered around social and human values, including respect, self-reliance, helpfulness, cooperation, and obedience, and often folktales or stories are used to reinforce these values.
The more modern the culture, the more likely there is to be a shift to more materialistic values. Many rural ethnic cultures engage in rituals and initiation ceremonies: for example, the Senufo is a ritual in which every seven years a new group of boys pass through three stages of initiation that are completed when they are in their thirties.
Ivoirians experience a number of health issues, including a large incidence of HIV-AIDS, female genital mutilation (FGM), unsanitary living conditions, unsafe drinking water, and a host of infectious diseases, including malaria, gastrointestinal ailments, respiratory infections, measles, and tetanus.
Leisure activities and opportunities
In Côte d’Ivoire performance art embodies music, dance, and festivals. Music exists almost everywhere—in everyday activities and religious ceremonies—and most singing is done in groups, usually accompanied by traditional instruments. Along with the native melodies of the indigenous groups, Ivoirians participate in more contemporary music from Europe and America. Dichotomies—from the Abidjan Orchestral Ensemble that performs classical music to street rock and roll—can be found in the cities. Traditional dance is alive in ceremonies and festivals, and is usually linked to history or ethnic beliefs. The Senufo N’Goron dance, for example, is a colorful initiation dance where young girls wearing a fan of feathers and imitate birds. Malinke women perform the Koutouba and Kouroubissi dances before Ramadan. The various traditions have unified the masquerade, music, and dance as an expression of the continuation of creation and life, and during these events the mask takes on deep cultural-spiritual significance.
Prepare and Plan Visit
In this initial contact the Relocation Coordinator will brief the Transferee, introducing destination services commissioned, and provide access codes to HTLC Network on-line City-Specific Resource Guides. In addition, the Relocation Coordinator will help the Transferee assess personal and family’s housing needs, as well as their hopes and plans for the sojourn in your new destination. The Transferee will be asked to fill out a Personal Needs Analysis Form, which will enable customized service delivery. After gaining a sense of the Transferee’s needs, the Relocation Coordinator will arrange appointments with schools and real estate agents, an appointment will be set up with one of the Local Counsellors for a city briefing and a programme will be finalised for accompanied property and school viewings.
Airport Pickup and Greeting The Transferee and family will be met at the airport by a Local Counsellor and accompanied to designated hotel.
Destination Country and City Information
The Transferee will be given a briefing on the local city and life in your new destination in general, and will be encouraged to ask any questions. An Information Pack on the destination city will be provided. This Pack includes an information sheet with the HTLC Network office and Local Counsellor contact information and emergency telephone numbers. Further, it includes a city and transport map as well as a hard copy of HTLC Network own City-Specific Resource Guide, which contains a wealth of information such as telephone access codes, English-speaking doctors and expatriate clubs. When available, a copy of the English Yellow Pages, local English language periodicals and other relevant information will also be included in the Information Pack.
City by Zone Tour
The purpose of this tour is to familiarise the Transferee with selected areas of the city and type of housing and amenities available, in order to be better prepared to select the neighbourhood most suitable for personal and family needs. The City By Zone Tour is often delivered in conjunction with a house hunting programme.
International Schooling The Transferee will be briefed on educational opportunities in the area. The Relocation Coordinator will schedule appointments at the selected schools, and the Local Counsellor will accompany the Transferee to pre-arranged appointments although the appointments will be privately held between the Transferee and school administrators. Where possible, the Relocation Coordinator will organise enrolment procedure and arrange for company invoicing.
Full-Day Househunting Programme Following an in-depth briefing by the Relocation Coordinator a programme of property viewings will be arranged. The Local Counsellor will accompany the Transferee to pre-arranged viewings of up to eight properties.
Two-Day Househunting Programme Following an in-depth briefing by the Relocation Coordinator a programme of property viewings will be arranged. The Local Counsellor will accompany the Transferee to pre-arranged viewings of up to fifteen properties.
Lease Negotiation After the Transferee has selected a property, the Relocation Coordinator will negotiate lease conditions with the real estate agency or landlord according to The national destination law. HTLC Network coordinator will prepare a contract that ensures legal protection for the client. Particular attention is given to include a break clause, as international assignments often change in duration and the aim is to give maximum flexibility within the limits of the national destination law.
Property Inspection and Inventory Once the lease has been signed, a thorough property inspection is taken in the presence of the Transferee. This includes an inventory of any furnishings, general condition of the property, and meter readings for utility contracts.
Utility Connections, Phone Line and Bank Account The Relocation Coordinator will arrange all utility and telephone connections, and a Local Counsellor will accompany the Transferee to open a bank account in the selected area.
Settling-In Assistance The Local Counsellor will spend time with the Transferee and family, assisting with requested elements of the relocation process, such as arranging language training, obtaining a satellite decoder or internet service provider, shopping for furniture or securing house contents insurance. Duration of this service depends on various company authorizations.
Car Purchase or Lease The Relocation Coordinator will brief the Transferee on the logistics of making an automobile purchase and will research reputable dealers in the area. The Local Counsellor will accompany the Transferee to dealers and act as a translator. Once the Transferee has made the selection, HTLC Network will take care of necessary documentation including insurance cover. For long-term rental HTLC Network will advise local availability of this service.
If the Transferee requests, and is eligible, the Local Counsellor will assist with National Health Registration. City hall registration is a separate service and if authorizied, HTLC Network will assist with the whole bureaucratic procedure at the relative cityhall.
Ongoing Phone Support The HTLC Network support Helpline is available to all Transferees for 90 days from date of property contract signing. Extensions to this Helpline can be added in periods of three months.
Car Importation Importation of car to your new destination, including full document assistance and re-registration with Vehicle registry.
Full Assignment Tracking Full tracking of all deadlines throughout duration of the Transferees international assignment, notification given of all scheduled renewal dates, such as housing contracts, Permit of Stay and Work Permits. Ad Hoc Services Service rendered both from back and front office is available on an hourly and daily basis.
Immigration procedures and requirements vary greatly from country to country. Documents requested from applicants depend on the citizenship of the individual applying and the status he wishes to obtain in the destination country, be it authorisation to work, authorisation for accompanying family members, tourist or study visas, temporary or permanent residency status.
• HTLC Network has been selected by many International Law and Immigration Firms as well as Global Relocation Companies to represent them exclusively for immigration
• We work closely with the relevant governmental and police authorities in each country
• Our Immigration Team are experts in immigration laws and keep abreast of changing requirements and procedures
• We prepare all documentation for HR, all you have to do is print out and sign
• We inform the Transferee which specific documents are required , which translations must be obtained and if these must be legalised
• We provide HR and Transferees with information on the process flow, timing and specific legal requirements of each destination
• We update all parties involved regularly as to the status of the application
• Whenever possible, we act with a Power of Attorney on behalf of the company and the Transferee; when the Transferee’s presence is required, he will be accompanied to the relevant office in the destination city
• Our Local Counsellors, residents and locals of the destination city, are able to present the all prepared documentation to the relevant offices in person; thus speeding up the process and ensuring an efficient service
For more info about our immigration services in Ivory Coast please contact our marketing department at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Properties will have no furniture whatsoever.
A semi-furnished property is basically nonexistent in Côte d’Ivoire.
Fully furnished properties can include anything from the basics such as kitchen cupboards and basic furniture such as dining table and chairs, armchairs, beds, and bathroom furniture to everything you could possibly require in a property.
Note: that the standard of furnishings varies and may not always be of the level that expatriates are used to.
There is a certain amount of flexibility; it depends on the individual landlord.
This depends on the Relocation Package you have; Our Basic Package includes 8 properties and our Extended Package includes 15 properties. You will be told at the outset how many properties you will be shown or how much time you have available to do the house hunting. The properties provided will be as close to your ‘Needs Analysis’ description as possible according to what is available on the market at the time.
It is not common practice to make a pre-contractual agreement, therefore once a suitable property has been identified, negotiation takes place and contract is drawn up.
Real estate fee: 10 % of the total fee to be paid by the landlord to the agency.
Rent is usually paid 3 months up front.
A security deposit is usually equal to 2-3 months rent.
The rental contract must be registered – the cost of registration is borne by the landlord when the renter is a foreigner. If the contract is not registered by the landlord and penalties are requested, the penalty should be paid by the landlord.
Once a suitable property is identified, the contract is negotiated and is signed by both parties. Payment is made. The contract must thereafter be registered at the relevant office by the landlord.
The chances of getting the deposit back when vacating the property are minimal unless a check in form has been signed, HTLC Network always ensure that a thorough check in is taken upon entry.
Tenant is responsible for general maintenance as specified in rental contract.
HTLC Network will ensure a diplomatic break clause is inserted into the contract for the protection of the tenant. The landlord will have the final say as to what is acceptable.
It is usually possible to include a break clause, rent paid in advance will be forfeited, and there is sometimes a penalty on top of any rent paid in advance.
Standard utilities to pay are electricity, water, bottled gas, telephone and garbage tax. There is also an estate television tax but it is included in the electricity bill.
Most landlords prefer the utility contracts to be transferred into the tenants name. For electricity and telephone it is also possible to buy a pre-paid card. The bills arrive directly to the property address.
Yes, Satellite and Cable TV are available.
A telephone is usually installed within three working days.
– ID card (photocopy)
– Proof of address (contract)
– one bill of the payment of either water or electricity.
The bills are sent individually to the tenants address on a bi-monthly basis and can be paid either through a bank transfer, by check or paid directly in the providers’ office. When paid by bank transfer it is advisable to present the receipt at the provider’s office.
Foreign licences are valid. But it is preferable to have International licence.
After 3 months from entry, the foreigner has to register the car at the office “Guiche Unique”. After this procedure the expat has to get new plates from SICTA (importation/exportation association) and then finalize the procedure by obtaining a car insurance from a local insurance company.
Yes, a foreigner can purchase a vehicle, provided he/she has regular immigration status.
It is advisable for professional foreigners to have 24 hour guard service at their properties. In Ivory Coast it is common for foreigners to take guardians for 24 hours in order to assure their security.
Not in particular.
Required vaccinations: yellow fever, meningitis A CW135 and hepatitis A and typhoid.
Yellow fever , hepatitis, meningitis and typhoid.
– Extensive rapidly growing client list.
– Exclusive partner/representative of many Global Relocation Service Providers.
– Exclusive representative of many International Law and Immigration Firms.
– Quality control guarantee: Head Office directs all relocations and immigrations in every destination.
– All staff required to attend on-going training sessions and workshops to keep updated as to global mobility needs.
– No language barriers – Assistance provided in all major European languages and many others.
– Corporate consultation with HTLC Netowork’s’ Representatives at location of choice.
– HTLC Network own ‘Resource Guides’ providing a wealth of everyday information for expatlife in destination city.
– Comprehensive FAQs for each country serviced.
– Red Alert List to prepare for the specific challenges of each destination.
– Extra ‘Safety’ section in Resource Guides for countries posing specific security threats.
– 24-hour Emergency Helpline for Transferees throughout the duration of the relocation.
– Complimentary 3-month Helpline.
HTLC Network will prepare all the necessary paperwork, email it to the Company and direct as to how the various documents are to be printed out and signed. We will send one of our Local Counsellors with Power of Attorney (Delega) to act on behalf of the individual and company.
When the Transferee has to be present to apply for a document, he will be accompanied by our Local Counsellor.
During HTLC Network’ initial teleconference with the client we go through an in-depth ‘Needs Analysis’ which can include Housing Budget variables for the Destination City. HTLC Network will work with the Company to ensure the workforce locate properties of a suitable standard within the parameters set by corporate policy.
HTLC Network will prepare the contract in the name of a legal representative of the Company. We require full data of the individual, a photocopy of his/her passport ID pages and a photocopy of the Company’ s ‘Camera di Commercio’ demonstrating position within the Company.
The prepared contract will be emailed to the appropriate Company contact and instructions will be given on how it is to be printed out and signed. Once signed, one of HTLC Network’ Local Counsellors will collect the contract and deliver it to the real estate agent for the signature of the landlord. A signed copy will be returned to the Company whilst the three copies of the contract are being registered, thereafter a registered copy will be delivered.
Arrangements will be made to take a thorough inventory in the presence of the tenant and landlord.
Legally, yes, as long as it can be proved that the individual who signs the contract has the legal right to sign as a representative of the Company. Many landlords however, will not accept this as it is harder to take a foreign Company to court should there be any missing rent payments or problems. As landlord’s rarely accept a foreign Company signing the lease, it is usually signed by the local company that is VAT registered locally.
For the presentation of document application, it varies from city to city. Wherever possible HTLC Network will prepare power of attorney (Delega) in order for a Local Counsellor to act on behalf of the Transferee and family.
To release the obtained documents, the Transferee and other members of the family must be present as an original signature is required.
All Local Counsellors are really ‘local’ to the area where they assist Transferees. They are selected for their good knowledge of their city area.
All Local Counsellors are trained by HTLC Network to follow our set pattern of delivering services using an in-house ‘Training and Operations Manual’.
All Local Counsellors are closely directed by Office Coordinators, ensuring a consistent standard of service is delivered.
All relocations are handled by the same system of centralisation. When required, we arrange for a member of our office team to go to the location of a group move to be an in-house Coordinator, working from the Client Company’s premises as a point of reference for HR, Transferees and their families.
In main centres we have several Local Counsellors.
HTLC Network aims to equip your workforce to settle into their new environment as soon as possible. Upon arrival they are presented with a local Information Pack. They are given access to our on-line City Specific Resource Guides that provide general local information as well as specific local information once a suitable property has been located.
We have a 24hour emergency helpline throughout the duration of the relocation. We provide a 90 day complimentary phone line that can be extended throughout the duration of the assignment.
Our aim is to teach the Transferee how to live in his new city and to equip him to be as independent as possible.
Area: 2322,463 sq km
Time Zone: GMT +0 hour
Capital city: Yamoussoukro
Bordering countries: Burkina Faso 584 km, Ghana 668 km, Guinea 610 km, Liberia 716 km, Mali 532 km
Stateform: Republic of the Ivory Coast
Legislative Branch: Unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale
National Holiday: Independence Day, 7 August
Currency: Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XOF)
Ethnic Groups: Akan 42.1%, Voltaiques or Gur 17.6%, Northern Mandes 16.5%, Krous 11%, Southern Mandes 10%, other 2.8% (includes 130,000 Lebanese and 14,000 French) (1998)
Religion: Muslim 38.6%, Christian 32.8%, indigenous 11.9%, none 16.7% (2008 est.)
Languages: French (official), 60 native dialects of which Dioula is the most widely spoken.