Burkina Faso is a landlocked country in the West African Sahel with a growing economy. Following the fall of the long-standing president, Blaise Compaorés, and the defeat of the attempted coup, democratic elections proceeded peacefully at the end 2015 and Roch Marc Christian Kaboré was elected as the new president.

Raw materials exports initially boosted gross national product, but the international price slump and political crises culminated in an economic crisis. Most of the working population is still employed in agriculture. Harvest yields are generally just enough to meet subsistence needs and vary greatly due to the adverse climate. The population has to struggle with recurrent food crises.

REDUCING POVERTY TOGETHER

Although Burkina Faso has made progress in the last 20 years - in primary school education and drinking water supply, for example - almost half of its 17 million inhabitants live below the poverty line, which is why Austria actively supports the government in its efforts to reduce poverty. Improving training and raising productivity are among the foremost challenges facing the country. The Austrian Development Agency therefore promotes practical and needs-based vocational training and the professionalisation of skilled crafts and agriculture.

Burkina Faso has been a priority country of Austrian Development Cooperation since 1993. A field office was established in the capital, Ouagadougou, in 1996.