The Republic of Mali is situated in West Africa and shares a border with Algeria, Burkina Faso, Niger, Guinea, Senegal and Mauritania. Its ancient city of Timbuktu was for many years a key trading hub and centre of Islamic culture. Following independence from France in 1960, Mali suffered droughts, civil unrest, a coup and 23 years of military dictatorship until democratic elections in 1992. In recent years a jihadist insurgency in the north of the country have carried out terrorist attacks.
President: Ibrahim Boubacar Keita
Population: 14.5 million
Languages: French, Bambara, Arabic, Berber
Despite deteriorating security, economic performance is strong, with robust growth and, more recently, an apparent drop in poverty rates overall. Robust performance in the agriculture and services sectors led to an estimated growth rate of 5.8% in 2016 (down from 6.0% in 2015) despite volatile security conditions.
Growth is projected to stay robust at about 5% over the medium term, in line with Mali’s long-run potential growth rate. Agricultural growth is underpinned by favourable weather and positive effects from input subsidy reform. Services growth is expected to continue in telecoms, transport, and trade.
Source World Bank