Year
Côte d'Ivoire
x

    Côte d'Ivoire

    Capital

    Yamoussoukro

    Population

    25,716,544

    Area

    322,460 km²

    Geography type

    Coastal

    Gross domestic product (GDP)

    USD 12,267.39 million

    GDP per capita

    $2,276.00

    Income group

    Lower middle income

    6.15-0.08

    Criminality Score

    11th of 54 African countries

    2nd of 15 West Africa countries

    Criminal market

    6.050.10

    Human Trafficking

    6.50-0.50

    Human Smuggling

    6.501.50

    Arms Trafficking

    7.000.00

    Flora Crimes

    6.00-1.50

    Fauna Crimes

    6.500.00

    Non-Renewable Resource Crimes

    7.500.00

    Heroin Trade

    3.50-0.50

    Cocaine Trade

    5.002.00

    Cannabis Trade

    6.000.00

    Synthetic Drug Trade

    6.000.00

    Criminal Actors

    6.25-0.25

    Mafia-Style Groups

    3.000.00

    Criminal Networks

    7.00-0.50

    State-Embedded Actors

    7.00-1.00

    Foreign Actors

    8.000.50

    4.42-0.12

    Resilience Score

    19th of 54 African countries

    6th of 15 West Africa countries

    Political Leadership and Governance

    4.50-1.50

    Government Transparency and Accountability

    4.000.00

    International Cooperation

    6.000.00

    National Policies and Laws

    4.500.00

    Judicial System and Detention

    5.50-0.50

    Law Enforcement

    5.001.00

    Territorial Integrity

    4.00-0.50

    Anti-Money Laundering

    5.001.00

    Economic Regulatory Capacity

    3.50-1.50

    Victim and Witness Support

    3.500.00

    Prevention

    3.000.00

    Non-State Actors

    4.500.50

    4.4166666666667 6.25 6.05 4.4166666666667 6.25 6.05

    4.42-0.12

    Resilience Score

    19th of 54 African countries

    6th of 15 West Africa countries

    Political Leadership and Governance

    4.50-1.50

    Government Transparency and Accountability

    4.000.00

    International Cooperation

    6.000.00

    National Policies and Laws

    4.500.00

    Judicial System and Detention

    5.50-0.50

    Law Enforcement

    5.001.00

    Territorial Integrity

    4.00-0.50

    Anti-Money Laundering

    5.001.00

    Economic Regulatory Capacity

    3.50-1.50

    Victim and Witness Support

    3.500.00

    Prevention

    3.000.00

    Non-State Actors

    4.500.50

    01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09

    People

    Côte d’Ivoire is a country of origin, transit point and destination country for forced labour and the commercial sexual exploitation of women, children and men. Domestic trafficking is the most prevalent form of trafficking, with victims frequently trafficked from the more impoverished northern regions to the south of the country. Côte d’Ivoire is also a destination country for foreign victims of human trafficking. Forced labour of boys and men from Ghana, Mali and Burkina Faso exists in the agricultural, mining and construction sectors. Girls and women recruited from Ghana, Togo and Benin are often trafficked to Côte d’Ivoire to work as domestic servants. The phenomenon of trafficking within Quranic schools has also been documented. Many human-trafficking victims are vulnerable migrants who seek economic opportunities in Côte d’Ivoire and fall prey to traffickers by deception or force.

    Due to a range of pushfactors, including unemployment and ongoing socio-political and military crises, Côte d’Ivoire experiences high rates of out-migration. As a result, Côte d’Ivoire is a source country of irregular migrants and refugees who will often seek the services of human-smuggling groups and networks that facilitate the journey towards Europe. Indeed, citizens of Côte d’Ivoire make up a relatively significant number of the irregular migrants who have arrived on European-Mediterranean coasts in the past decade. This route most often goes through countries such as Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger, Algeria and Libya. Côte d’Ivoire is also a destination and transit country for citizens of other West African states seeking economic opportunities, stability or a point of departure towards other destinations. Despite the freedom of movement among the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), many migrants from countries such as Burkina Faso and Mali enter Côte d’Ivoire illegally. The key roles carried out by smugglers within the country are the recruitment of prospective migrants,acting as a point of contact for them, linking them with smugglers further along the smuggling routes to Europe, and facilitating payments to other smugglers.

    Trade

    Evidence suggests that there is a substantial criminal market for illicit arms in Côte d’Ivoire. Periods of political instability, including the removal of President in 1999,anenduring insurgency, and deadly political unrest in 2011, have fuelled illicit flows of arms into the country. In addition, the border with Mali and Burkina Faso has seen increased arms trafficking due to the conflicts that plague the Sahel region.

    Environment

    Côte d’Ivoire has a large-scale and unregulated artisanal gold and diamond mining industry. Artisanal mining constitutes an important livelihood for many different sections of society, including farmers, refugees from surrounding countries, former combatants and government officials. However, armed groups have seized control of many mines, enabling them to generate tens of millions of dollars a year from mining-related taxation, smuggling and racketeering. Illegal logging, another key environmental criminal market, has been a widespread issue for decades and has substantially reduced Côte d’Ivoire’s forest resources and forest cover. While most of these losses are linked to farming activities, illegal harvesting of timber is responsible forsubstantial deforestation. Côte d’Ivoire is both a source and transit country for illicit wildlife products, with pangolin scales and elephant ivory being the two most trafficked wildlife products. These products originate from Côte d’Ivoire as well as other West African countries such as Burkina Faso, Guinea, Mali, Nigeria and Liberia, and are likely bound predominantly for destination markets in Asia. Additionally, Côte d’Ivoire appears to be emerging as a prominent transit point for fauna trafficking due to its role as a trade junction in the illegal ape, ivory and bird trade.

    Drugs

    With one of the higher seizure rates on the African continent, the criminal market for cannabis in Côte d’Ivoire is the most pervasive drug market in the country. Cannabis cultivation has increased substantially in the wake of Cote d’Ivoire’s cocoa crisis. Cannabis is primarily grown in the south-western region of Bas-Sassandra, often by farmers. This suggests that the overall trade is large and growing. While it is difficult to estimate how widespread Côte d’Ivoire’s consumer base is, cannabis is known to be consumed domestically, particularly by younger people. Côte d’Ivoire is believed to be a transit country for synthetic drugs, which are imported from abroad, particularly the Middle East and South America. At the same time, however, synthetic drugs are considered a luxury drug and consumption is limited to certain groups.

    Côte d’Ivoire is a transit country for cocaine. It is imported from Latin American countries and exported to European countries and the United States. Evidence from recent years’ seizures suggests that the cocaine market within Côte d’Ivoire is limited, but becoming wider and more significant. These seizures also indicate that state-embedded actors could play a role in the cocaine market. Heroin is considered a luxury drug and its presence in Côte d’Ivoire is often linked to tourism, expatriate residents or wealthy nationals.

    Criminal Actors

    Most organized crime actors in Côte d’Ivoire operate as part of larger criminal networks. Criminal networks are engaged in criminal markets such as arms trafficking, taxation and smuggling of artisanalmining of gold and diamonds, drug trafficking and environmental crimes such as the trafficking of endangered animal species. Foreign actors also have extensive involvement in criminal markets in Côte d’Ivoire. For instance, local drug trafficking networks have strong ties to drug cartels from Central and South America and prominent European mafia-style groups. Trafficking in wildlife products often occurs in cooperation with South East Asian criminal actors. Foreign criminal and terrorist activities are also on the rise in the northern parts of Côte d’Ivoire.

    Domestic criminal actors with mafia-like characteristics have a limited presence in Côte d’Ivoire and are for the most part engaged in human trafficking, particularly of children. Similarly, state-embedded actors have been known to engage in acts of corruption,which is deeply engrained in both public and private sector practices, but the exact extent of their engagement in specific criminal markets is difficult to pinpoint.

    Leadership and governance

    Côte d’Ivoire is recovering from two decades of civil conflict and political instability. Although the country remains fragile, governance has steadily improved in the last 10 years and the government of Côte d’Ivoire has shown an interest in strengthening inclusive and democratic institutions. The government has made headway in addressing corruption, has installed a basic anti-corruption institutional framework and has implemented some initiatives to improve accountability and transparency. However, corruption remains an acute and endemic issue, calling for continued and increased efforts in strengthening integrity systems and transparent governance.

    The government of Côte d’Ivoire closely cooperates with relevant international organizations on fighting organized crime. These include the UN Organization on Drugs and Crime, INTERPOL, the European Union, ECOWAS, and foreign donors and governments, in several sponsored programmes. Côte d’Ivoire has also ratified a number of international instruments pertaining to organized crime and terrorism. The country is a member of the regional ECOWAS extradition conventions and maintains bilateral extradition treaties with neighbouring countries and France. Côte d’Ivoire has laws related to organized crime, including one that criminalizes organized criminal groups. The legal framework is at least present on paper and able to adequately respond to the threat,but the country’s capacity to enforce relevant laws is limited.

    Criminal justice and security

    Côte d’Ivoire has yet to build a judicial system that is fully independent of political influence or adequately capable of guaranteeing due process. Corruption in the courts, security services and in law enforcement is a major obstacle to effective prosecutions of organized criminals and rule of law in general. Conditions in prisons are inadequate, with reports of overcrowding and corruption prevailing inside detention facilities. Côte d’Ivoire has a number of units dedicated to combating organized crime, but the overall ability of law enforcement authorities continues to be seriously undermined by corruption and lack of capacity. There are, however, ongoing internationally supported reform efforts aiming to strengthen both law enforcement and judicial institutions in the country. In terms of security, territorial integrity remains a key issue for the country. Particularly in the north, the threat of violence from armed groups with violent extremist ideologies remains high.

    Economic and financial environment

    Côte d’Ivoire’s economy has been growing consistently and rapidly in the last decade. However, these high growth levels have not been associated with poverty reduction. With a large informal sector, Côte d’Ivoire’s private sector is underdeveloped and the country’s economic environment does not make it an attractive business or investment destination. Moreover, while the country’s economy has been diversifying, the complexity of its export baskets remains limited. Côte d’Ivoire has taken steps towards promotinga more open and competitive environment conducive to economic development and structural transformation. Donors and international partners also continue to push the government to make reforms.

    Côte d’Ivoire has significant deficiencies in its anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism framework, making it vulnerable to illicit money flows. The country performed poorly on its 2012 initial mutual evaluation report, receiving ratings of non-compliance in most core recommendations. The digitalization of government systems may have had a positive impact on the country’s resilience to money laundering, but Côte d’Ivoire remains vulnerable overall.

    Civil society and social protection

    Victim and witness support mechanisms are generally lacking. While the government has demonstrated increasing efforts by convicting more traffickers and setting up emergency shelters and services for trafficking victims, more and stronger mechanisms to effectively combat human trafficking need to be implemented. Preventive initiatives against organized crime are ongoing. Among others, these include training law enforcement to better manage illicit border flows. Côte d’Ivoire’s history of conflict continues to leave its mark on society. Civil society coalitions are limited in the country and the relationship between the state and actors within civil society could be strengthened substantially. On the other hand, Côte d’Ivoire performs moderately well in terms of freedom of the press, and journalists enjoy freedom for the most part. Still, recent years have seen murders, arrests and acts of intimidation against journalists.

    Analyses

    Seeing the wood for the trees in Côte d’Ivoire’s cocoa fields

    Driven by cocoa farming and contributing to widespread deforestation, illegal logging in Côte d’Ivoire is built on a black market controlled by predators.

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    The criminal markets score is represented by the pyramid base size and the criminal actors score is represented by the pyramid height, on a scale ranging from 1 to 10. The resilience score is represented by the panel height, which can be identified by the side of the panel.