5-speed listening (Level 4)

Ivory Coast gets three-word postal addresses






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Ivory Coast has a new postal system. It uses addresses that are just three words. For the first time, everyone in the country can get mail at their house. Before now, richer people used post office boxes. The head of Ivory Coast's post office said: "We have 150,000 PO boxes for a population of nearly 24 million. That means a postal address is a luxury….We have to make postal access available to everyone."

The new postal system uses the what3words.com geo-mapping system. It divides the world into 57 trillion 3m x 3m squares, each with a unique 3-word address. The software uses coordinates to pinpoint a location. The 22 numbers from these coordinates are changed into three easy to remember words. These replace regular addresses. A what3words spokesperson said poor addressing slows down growth and development and can cost lives.

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