Port city (pop., 2007 est.: 762,000), de facto capital of Benin. Situated along the Gulf of Guinea, it is the starting point of the Benin-Niger Railway and the site of deepwater port facilities, completed in 1965, that serve both Benin and Togo. Cotonou is the economic hub of Benin and its largest urban centre. Its industries include brewing, textile production, and palm-oil processing. It is home to the National University of Benin (1970).