Historically, this part of Africa was one of the major centers of the slave trade. The Portuguese were among the first of the slave traders beginning in the 16th or 17th centuries, and the British gained control in the mid to late 1700's. However, the British abolished slavery in 1807 and established military outposts in this area after that date to enforce the abolition.
Today, the economy is dominated by agriculture, with peanuts being one of the major export products. Tourism and commercial fishing are other major industries. Many western Europeans spend their holidays here soaking up the sun and heat on the great coastline beaches.