Burkina Faso

Country Summary

2022 population pyramid



Burkina Faso (formerly Upper Volta) achieved independence from France in 1960. Repeated military coups during the 1970s and 1980s were followed by multiparty elections in the early 1990s.



total: 274,200 sq km

land: 273,800 sq km

water: 400 sq km


three climate zones including a hot tropical savanna with a short rainy season in the southern half, a tropical hot semi-arid steppe climate typical of the Sahel region in the northern half, and small area of hot desert in the very north of the country bordering the Sahara Desert

Natural resources

gold, manganese, zinc, limestone, marble, phosphates, pumice, salt

People and Society


21,935,389 (2022 est.)

Ethnic groups

Mossi 52%, Fulani 8.4%, Gurma 7%, Bobo 4.9%, Gurunsi 4.6%, Senufo 4.5%, Bissa 3.7%, Lobi 2.4%, Dagara 2.4%, Tuareg/Bella 1.9%, Dioula 0.8%, unspecified/no answer 0.3%, other 7.2% (2010 est.)


Mossi 52.9%, Fula 7.8%, Gourmantche 6.8%, Dyula 5.7%, Bissa 3.3%, Gurunsi 3.2%, French (official) 2.2%, Bwamu 2%, Dagara 2%, San 1.7%, Marka 1.6%, Bobo 1.5%, Senufo 1.5%, Lobi 1.2%, other 6.6% (2019 est.)


Muslim 63.2%, Roman Catholic 24.6%, Protestant 6.9%, traditional/animist 4.2%, none 0.7%, unspecified 0.4% (2017-18 est.)

Population growth rate

2.53% (2022 est.)


Government type

presidential republic


name: Ouagadougou

Executive branch

chief of state: transitional President Capt Ibrahim TRAORE (since 30 September 2022); note - on 30 September 2022, a military junta led by TRAORE, took power and ousted President Lt. Col. Paul-Henri Sandaogo DAMIBA and took over as head of the Patriotic Movement for Safeguard and Restoration.

head of government: Prime Minister Albert OUEDRAOGO (since 3 March 2022); note - transitional President Lt. Col. DAMIBA appointed OUEDRAOGO Prime Minister on 3 March 2022; the position had been vacant since 24 January 2022 when the military ousted former Prime Minister Lassina ZERBO

Legislative branch

description: unicameral National Assembly (127 seats; 111 members directly elected in 13 multi-seat constituencies by party-list proportional representation vote and 26 members elected in a nationwide constituency by proportional representation vote; all member serve 5-year terms)


Economic overview

highly agrarian, low-income economy; limited natural resources; widespread poverty; terrorism disrupting potential economic activity; improving trade balance via increases in gold exports; economy inflating after prior deflation; growing public debt but still manageable

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$45.16 billion (2020 est.)

Real GDP per capita

$2,200 (2020 est.)

Agricultural products

sorghum, maize, millet, cotton, cow peas, sugar cane, groundnuts, rice, sesame seed, vegetables


cotton lint, beverages, agricultural processing, soap, cigarettes, textiles, gold


$4.47 billion (2019 est.)

Exports - partners

Switzerland 59%, India 21% (2019)

Exports - commodities

gold, cotton, zinc, cashews, sesame seeds (2019)


$5.02 billion (2019 est.)

Imports - partners

Cote d'Ivoire 15%, China 9%, Ghana 8%, France 8%, India 6%, United States 5% (2019)

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, delivery trucks, packaged medicines, electricity, aircraft (2019)

Exchange rates

Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XOF) per US dollar -

Page last updated: Friday, December 23, 2022