Benin (/bɛˈniːn/ (About this soundlisten) ben-EEN, /bɪˈniːn/ bin-EEN; French: Bénin [benɛ̃]), officially the Republic of Benin (French: République du Bénin) and formerly known as Dahomey, is a country in West Africa. It is bordered by Togo to the west, Nigeria to the east, Burkina Faso to the north-west, and Niger to the north-east. The majority of its population lives on the small southern coastline of the Bight of Benin, part of the Gulf of Guinea in the northernmost tropical portion of the Atlantic Ocean. The capital of Benin is Porto-Novo, but the seat of government is in Cotonou, the country’s largest city and economic capital. Benin covers an area of 114,763 square kilometres (44,310 sq mi) and its population in 2018 was estimated to be approximately 11.49 million. Benin is a tropical nation, highly dependent on agriculture, and is a large exporter of cotton and palm oil. Substantial employment and income arise from subsistence farming.
Porto-Novo (French pronunciation: [pɔʁtɔnɔvo]; also known as Hogbonu and Ajashe; Fon: Xɔ̀gbónù) is the capital of Benin. The commune covers an area of 110 square kilometres (42 sq mi) and as of 2002 had a population of 223,552 people.
As the name suggests, Porto-Novo (Portuguese: “New Port”, Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈpoɾtu ˈnovu]) was originally developed as a port for the slave trade led by the Portuguese Empire.
Porto-Novo is a port on an inlet of the Gulf of Guinea, in the southeastern portion of the country. It is Benin’s second-largest city, and although Porto-Novo is the official capital, where the national legislature sits, the larger city of Cotonou is the seat of government, where most of the government buildings are situated and government departments operate.