Benin - Bénin (BJ)

1.  Language information / Données sur les langues

1.1  Languages spoken / Langues parlées

a) Official / Officielle(s)

French, as stipulated in the constitution (Aménagement linguistique)

b) National, indigenous / Nationale(s), indigène(s)

The site L'aménagement linguistique dans le monde has a page on Benin including a summary of (2.2) "Les langues nationales" at

Ethnologue has an extensive list at

c) Relevant pages in the Major Languages section of this report / Pages appropriées dans la section de ce rapport sur les Langues principales

Gbe (Fon), Yoruba, Songhai/Zarma (Dendi), Fula

1.2  Language policy / Politique de langue :

a) Laws/legislation / Lois/législation

The site L'aménagement linguistique dans le monde has a page on Benin including a section on (4) "La politique linguistique" at

b) Agencies / Agences :

Two institutions "involved in or responsible for African Language research" in Benin (UNESCO 1985). Updated information is needed:

  • Département d'études littéraires, linguistiques et de traditions orales (DELTO), Facultés des Lettres, Arts & Sciences humaines, Université nationale du Benin, B. P. 526 - COTONOU
  • Commission nationale de linguistique B.P. 348 - COTONOU

c) Languages in education/literacy / Langues dans l'éducation/l'alphabétisation :

UNDP (2006) gives a literacy figure (without reference to which language[s]) of: 34.7%

1.3  Writing in national/indigenous languages / Ecriture en langues nationales/indigènes

a) Orthographies / Orthographes :

National languages are written in the Latin alphabet with some additional modified letters (extended characters). A chart showing the extended Latin characters and diacritics used in some Beninese languages is available at:

b). Print publications / Editions imprimées :

UNESCO (1985) reported the following periodicals (name, frequency of publication, circulation, language). Updated information is needed:

  • Alladjumose (Cooperation), monthly, 1,500, Yoruba
  • Cookanne (Concertation), monthly, 1,000, Waama
  • Fitila (Lumiere), monthly, 500, Dendi
  • Inbuke (Autre nouvelle), monthly, 600, Adja
  • Kparo (Crieur public), monthly, 2,000, Bariba
  • Sedonyonwi (Information), monthly, 1,500, Fon

1.4  Other comments / Autre commentaire

2.  ICT situation / Situation des TIC

2.1  Infrastructure / Infrastructure

a) Telephones / Téléphones

  • Fixed lines:
    • Telephone mainlines: 9 per 1000 people (APC)
    • Telephones - main lines in use: 76,300 (2005) (CIA)
  • Mobile subscriptions:

b) Radio stations / Stations de radio

Radio broadcast stations: AM 2, FM 9, shortwave 4 (2000) (CIA)

c). Connectivity / Connectivité

  • International internet bandwidth / Bande passante internationale d'internet :
  • ISPs / FSI :
  • Internet hosts : 882 on .bj domains (ISC)
  • Geographic coverage / Couverture géographique :

2.2  Computer & internet access / Accès aux ordinateurs et à l'internet

a) Computers & points of access / Ordinateurs et lieux d'accès

  • Number of computers / Nombre d'ordinateurs: 1.3 per 1000 people (APC)
  • Cybercafés / Cybercafés:
  • Project telecentres / Télécentres de projets:

b) Internet / Internet

  • Dial-up subscribers / Abonnés par ligne téléphonique :
  • Internet users / Utilisateurs de l'internet :
    • 100,000 internet users as of Sept/05, 1.3% of the population, per ITU (Internet World Stats)
    • 425,000 (2005) (CIA)

c) Other / Autre

Digital Opportunity Index (DOI): 0.17 (ITU 2006); 0.19, ranked 146 (ITU 2007)

  • ICT Opportunity Index (ICT-OI?):
  • ICT Development Index (IDI):

2.3  ICT policy / Politique de TIC

Information on Benin's NICI (National Information and Communications Infrastructure) policy is available via and

The APC page, "ICT Policy in Benin" has some information and links to documents:

2.4  ICT4D/E & ICT training / TIC pour le développement/éducation, et formation en TIC

2.5  Resources / Ressources

Institutions & organisations:

On the web:

3.  Localisation situation / Situation de localisation

3.1  Country web content / Contenu web du pays

3.2  Web content in indigenous languages / Contenu web en langues indigènes

(See also specific language pages.)

3.3  Software localisation / Localisation de logiciel

There are some individuals in and out of Benin interested in localisation.

(See also specific language pages.)

3.4  Projects & organisations / Projets et organisations

3.5  Localisation policy / Politique de localisation

4.  References / Références

APC, "ICT Policy in Benin" Africa ICT Policy Monitor, ("Politiques de TIC en/au Benin," Observatoire des politiques des TIC en Afrique, )

Halaoui, Nazam. 2001. "Aménagement et politique linguistiques: La politique des langues au Bénin." Language Problems and Language Planning 25 (2): 145-166.

International Telecommunications Union (ITU). 2004. African Telecommunication Indicators 2004. Geneva: ITU.

______. 2006. World Information Society Report 2006. Geneva: ITU.

______. 2007. World Information Society Report 2007. Geneva: ITU.

Internet Systems Consortium (ISC), "Distribution of Top-Level Domain Names by Host Country, Jan 2007"

Internet World Stats: Africa. 2006.

Leclerc, Jacques. L'aménagement linguistique dans le monde, "Bénin,"

SIL International, Ethnologue: Languages of the World, "Languages of Benin,"

UNDP. 2006. ''Beyond scarcity: Power, poverty and the global water crisis. Human Development Report 2006.'' New York: United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). [Human development index Adult literacy rate (% ages 15 and older) (HDI) ]

UNESCO Regional Office for Education in Africa. 1985. African Community Languages and Their Use in Literacy and Education: A Regional Survey. Dakar: UNESCO.

U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), "The World Factbook: Benin,"

Vodafone. 2005. "Africa: The Impact of Mobile Phones." The Vodafone Policy Paper Series, Number 3, March 2005.

WikiEducator, "ICT4Africa/Country Report Benin,"

Wikipedia, "Benin,"

______, "Bénin,"énin

______, "Communications in Benin,"

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