Region: Western Africa
Population: 12,324,029 (July 2008 est.)
Surface area: 1.24 million sq km
Currency: CFA franc (XOF)
GDP per capita: Purchasing power parity US $1,000 (2007 est.)
The Sudanese Republic and Senegal became independent of France in 1960 as the Mali Federation. When Senegal withdrew after only a few months, what formerly made up the Sudanese Republic was renamed Mali. Rule by dictatorship was brought to a close in 1991 by a military coup - led by the current president Amadou Toure - enabling Mali's emergence as one of the strongest democracies on the continent. President Alpha Konare won Mali's first democratic presidential election in 1992 and was reelected in 1997. In keeping with Mali's two-term constitutional limit, Konare stepped down in 2002 and was succeeded by Amadou Toure, who was subsequently elected to a second term in 2007. The elections were widely judged to be free and fair.
Economy – Overview:
Mali is among the poorest countries in the world, with 65% of its land area desert or semidesert and with a highly unequal distribution of income. Economic activity is largely confined to the riverine area irrigated by the Niger. About 10% of the population is nomadic and some 80% of the labor force is engaged in farming and fishing. Industrial activity is concentrated on processing farm commodities. Mali is heavily dependent on foreign aid and vulnerable to fluctuations in world prices for cotton, its main export, along with gold. The government has continued its successful implementation of an IMF-recommended structural adjustment program that is helping the economy grow, diversify, and attract foreign investment. Mali's adherence to economic reform and the 50% devaluation of the CFA franc in January 1994 have pushed up economic growth to a 5% average in 1996-2007. Worker remittances and external trade routes for the landlocked country have been jeopardized by continued unrest in neighboring Cote d'Ivoire.
Major Export Commodities: cotton, gold, livestock
Remittances: US $107 million (2006)
Human Development Index 2007/2008 ranking: 173 out of 177
Official Development Assistance and Major Development Partners: Net ODA in 2006 was US $398.43 million. Major development partners include the IDA, the African Development Fund, the European Community, and France.
Total External Debt: US $2.8 billion (2002)
United Nations membership date: 28 September 1960
New York Mission:
Permanent Mission of the Republic of Mali to the United Nations
111 East 69th Street
New York, N.Y. 10021
Telephone: 212-737-4150 / 794-1311
CIA World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. www.cia.gov
World Development Indicators. World Bank www.worldbank.org
Development, Recipient Aid Charts. Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. www.oecd.org
Human Development Report 2007/2008.United Nations Development Programme. www.undp.org
Updated June 2008