Burkina Faso: People & Society#

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, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2016 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Burkinabe (singular and plural)
adjective: Burkinabe
Ethnic groupsMossi 52.5%, Fulani 8.4%, Gurma 6.8%, Bobo 4.8%, Gurunsi 4.5%, Senufo 4.4%, Bissa 3.9%, Lobi 2.5%, Dagara 2.4%, Tuareg/Bella 1.9%, Dioula 0.8%, unspecified/no answer 0.1%, other 7% (2010 est.)
LanguagesFrench (official), native African languages belonging to Sudanic family spoken by 90% of the population
ReligionsMuslim 61.6%, Catholic 23.2%, traditional/animist 7.3%, Protestant 6.7%, other/no answer 0.2%, none 0.9% (2010 est.)
Demographic profileBurkina Faso has a young age structure – the result of declining mortality combined with steady high fertility – and continues to experience rapid population growth, which is putting increasing pressure on the country’s limited arable land. More than 65% of the population is under the age of 25, and the population is growing at 3% annually. Mortality rates, especially those of infants and children, have decreased because of improved health care, hygiene, and sanitation, but women continue to have an average of almost 6 children. Even if fertility were substantially reduced, today’s large cohort entering their reproductive years would sustain high population growth for the foreseeable future. Only about a third of the population is literate and unemployment is widespread, dampening the economic prospects of Burkina Faso’s large working-age population. Migration has traditionally been a way of life for Burkinabe, with seasonal migration being replaced by stints of up to two years abroad. Cote d’Ivoire remains the top destination, although it has experienced periods of internal conflict. Under French colonization, Burkina Faso became a main labor source for agricultural and factory work in Cote d’Ivoire. Burkinabe also migrated to Ghana, Mali, and Senegal for work between the world wars. Burkina Faso attracts migrants from Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, and Mali, who often share common ethnic backgrounds with the Burkinabe. Despite its food shortages and high poverty rate, Burkina Faso has become a destination for refugees in recent years and currently hosts about 50,000 Malians.
Age structure0-14 years: 45.04% (male 4,402,311/female 4,386,518)
15-24 years: 20.08% (male 1,966,644/female 1,951,722)
25-54 years: 29.28% (male 2,898,407/female 2,813,923)
55-64 years: 3.16% (male 267,763/female 349,433)
65 years and over: 2.44% (male 178,127/female 297,685) (2016 est.)
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 92.2%
youth dependency ratio: 87.6%
elderly dependency ratio: 4.6%
potential support ratio: 21.7% (2015 est.)
Median agetotal: 17.2 years
male: 17 years
female: 17.3 years (2016 est.)
Population growth rate3.01% (2016 est.)
Birth rate41.6 births/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Death rate11.5 deaths/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Net migration rate0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2016 est.)
Urbanizationurban population: 29.9% of total population (2015)
rate of urbanization: 5.87% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Major urban areas - populationOUAGADOUGOU (capital) 2.741 million (2015)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.77 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.6 male(s)/female
total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
Mother's mean age at first birth19.4
note: median age at first birth among women 25-29 (2010 est.)
Maternal mortality rate371 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 73.8 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 80.9 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 66.4 deaths/1,000 live births (2016 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 55.5 years
male: 53.4 years
female: 57.6 years (2016 est.)
Total fertility rate5.79 children born/woman (2016 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate16.2% (2010/11)
Health expenditures5% of GDP (2014)
Physicians density0.05 physicians/1,000 population (2010)
Hospital bed density0.4 beds/1,000 population (2010)
Drinking water sourceimproved:
urban: 97.5% of population
rural: 75.8% of population
total: 82.3% of population
urban: 2.5% of population
rural: 24.2% of population
total: 17.7% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved:
urban: 50.4% of population
rural: 6.7% of population
total: 19.7% of population
urban: 49.6% of population
rural: 93.3% of population
total: 80.3% of population (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate0.83% (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS95,300 (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths3,600 (2015 est.)
Major infectious diseasesdegree of risk: very high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: dengue fever, malaria, and yellow fever
water contact disease: schistosomiasis
respiratory disease: meningococcal meningitis
animal contact disease: rabies (2016)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate5.2% (2014)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight26.2% (2010)
Education expenditures3.9% of GDP (2015)
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 36%
male: 43%
female: 29.3% (2015 est.)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 8 years
male: 8 years
female: 7 years (2013)
Child labor - children ages 5-14total number: 1,521,006
percentage: 38% (2006 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 3.8%
male: 4.6%
female: 2.9% (2006 est.)