Departments of Ivory Coast

Departments of Ivory Coast (French: départements de Côte d'Ivoire, also known as collectivités territoriale) are currently the third-level administrative subdivision of the country. Each of the 31 second-level regions of Ivory Coast is divided into two or more departments. (The autonomous districts contain no regions, but they do contain departments.) Each department is divided into two or more sub-prefectures, which are the fourth-level subdivisions in Ivory Coast. As of 2016, there are 108 departments of Ivory Coast.

Departments of Ivory Coast. Red lines indicate borders of districts. Bolded black lines indicate borders of regions. Grey area is not governed by a department.

There is one area of Ivory Coast that is not governed by departments: the portion of Comoé National Park that is within Zanzan District is not assigned to any department.

Departments were first created in 1961. During their existence, they have been first-, second-, and third-level administrative subdivisions.

Current departmentsEdit

There are currently 108 departments of Ivory Coast. The departments are as follows:



Departments of Ivory Coast in 1961–63.
Departments of Ivory Coast in 1963–69.

Departments were established in 1961 and were the original first-level administrative subdivision of independent Ivory Coast.[1] Initially, there were just four departments: Centre, Nord, Sud-Est, and Sud-Ouest. In 1963, two more departments were created: Est was created by dividing Sud-Est, and Centre-Ouest) was created by dividing Sud-Ouest. As a result of the divisions, Sud-Est was renamed Sud and Sud-Ouest was renamed Ouest.

1969: 24 new departmentsEdit

In 1969, the six departments were abolished and in their place 24 new departments were created. The following table illustrates how the old departments were divided into the new departments:

The 24 new departments that were created in 1969 (in background the 6 former departments). These boundaries were consistent until departments began to be divided in 1974.
Old department New departments (number corresponds to position on map)
Centre Bouaflé (8), Bouaké (9), Dimbokro (13), Katiola (18)
Centre-Ouest Daloa (11), Gagnoa (16), Sassandra[2] (22)
Est Abengourou (1), Bondoukou (7)
Nord Boundiali (10), Ferkessédougou (15), Korhogo (19), Odienné (21), Séguéla (23), Touba (24)
Ouest Biankouma (6), Danané (12), Guiglo (17), Man (20)
Sud Abidjan (2), Aboisso (3), Adzopé (4), Agboville (5), Divo (14), Sassandra[2] (22)

Due to a lack of government resources, the 1969 changes were not fully implemented until 1974.

Subsequent divisions and relegation to second-levelEdit

From 1974 onward, new departments were occasionally created through division of pre-existing departments. New departments were created in 1974 (2), 1980 (8), 1988 (15), and 1995 (1). In 1997, when there were 50 departments, regions were created, which supplanted departments as the first-level administrative subdivision. As a result, the 50 departments became second-level divisions.

More departments were created in 1998 (8), 2005 (12), 2008 (11), and 2009 (9). By the time of the late-2011 reorganisation of the subdivisions of Ivory Coast, there were 90 departments in 19 regions.

2011 subdivision reorganisationEdit

In the 2011 reorganisation of the subdivisions of Ivory Coast, five new departments were created, bringing the total to 95. More significantly, however, districts were created as a new first-level division. As a result, regions became second-level subdivisions and the 95 departments became third-level subdivisions.

Post-2011 changesEdit

Since the 2011 reorganisation, 13 more departments have been created, bringing the total number to 108. Twelve departments were created in 2012 and one was created in 2013.

Names and governanceEdit

Departments are named after the city or town that serves as the seat of the department. In most cases, this is the most populous settlement in the department.

Each department is headed by a prefect, who is appointed by the council of ministers (cabinet) of the national government.[3] For departments that house regional capitals, the prefect of the department is the same individual as the prefect of the region, though the two offices of prefect remain distinct.[4]

Each department is divided into two or more sub-prefectures, which serve as fourth-level administrative subdivisions. There are currently 510 sub-prefectures in the country.

Current departments by district and regionEdit

Below are the departments divided by district and region with the establishment year of the departments in parentheses.

Abidjan Autonomous DistrictEdit

Bas-Sassandra DistrictEdit

Comoé DistrictEdit

Denguélé DistrictEdit

Gôh-Djiboua DistrictEdit

Lacs DistrictEdit

Lagunes DistrictEdit

Montagnes DistrictEdit

Sassandra-Marahoué DistrictEdit

Savanes DistrictEdit

Vallée du Bandama DistrictEdit

Woroba DistrictEdit

Yamoussoukro Autonomous DistrictEdit

Zanzan DistrictEdit

Defunct departmentsEdit

There are six departments of Ivory Coast that have been eliminated.

Maps of departments through timeEdit

Map Years effective First-level subdivisions Second-level subdivisions Third-level subdivisions Changes
  1961–63 4 departments Four departments created as first-level subdivisions.
  1963–69 6 departments Two departments added.
  1969–74 24 departments All previous departments abolished. 24 new departments established as first-level subdivisions.
  1974–80 26 departments Two departments added.
  1980–88 34 departments Eight departments added.
  1988–95 49 departments 15 departments added.
  1995–97 50 departments One department added.
  1997–98 16 regions 50 departments 16 regions created as new first-level subdivisions. Departments converted to second-level subdivisions.
  1998–2000 16 regions 58 departments Eight departments added.
  2000–05 19 regions 58 departments Three regions added.
  2005–08 19 regions 70 departments 12 departments added.
  2008–09 19 regions 81 departments 11 departments added.
  2009–11 19 regions 90 departments 9 departments added.
  2011–12 14 districts 30 regions 95 departments 14 districts created as new first-level subdivisions. Regions increased to 30 and converted to second-level subdivisions. Departments converted to third-level subdivisions. Five departments added. One area removed from departmental jurisdiction.
  2012–13 14 districts 31 regions 107 departments One region added. 12 departments added.
  2013– 14 districts 31 regions 108 departments One department added.


  1. ^ At independence in 1960, Ivory Coast was informally divided into 19 traditional cercles, but the cercles were not official administrative subdivisions.
  2. ^ a b Sassandra Department was created from territory taken partly from Centre-Ouest Department and partly from Sud Department.
  3. ^ Loi n° 2014-451 du 05 août 2014 portant orientation de l'organisation générale de l'Administration Territoriale.
  4. ^ Ordonnance n° 2011-262 du 28 septembre 2011 portant orientation de l'organisation générale de l'administration territoriale de l'Etat.
  5. ^ The boundaries of Abidjan Department and Abidjan Autonomous District are the same.