The economy of Mali is based to a large extent upon agriculture, with a mostly rural population engaged in subsistence agriculture.
Mali is among the ten poorest nations of the world, is one of the 37 Heavily Indebted Poor Countries, and is a major recipient of foreign aid from many sources, including multilateral organizations (most significantly the World Bank, African Development Bank, and Arab Funds), and bilateral programs funded by the European Union, France, United States, Canada, Netherlands, and Germany. Before 1991, the former Soviet Union, China and the Warsaw Pact countries had been a major source of economic and military aid.
The per capita gross domestic product (GDP) of Mali was $820 in 1999. Mali's great potential wealth lies in mining and the production of agricultural commodities, livestock, and fish. The most productive agricultural area lies along the banks of the Niger River, the Inner Niger Delta and the southwestern region around Sikasso.
|Economy of Mali|
|6.0% (2015), |
5.0% (2018f) 
All values, unless otherwise stated, are in US dollars.
This is a chart of trend of gross domestic product of Mali at market prices estimated by the International Monetary Fund with figures in millions of CFA Francs.
|Year||Gross Domestic Product||US Dollar Exchange||Inflation Index (2000=100)|
|1980||356,026||211.29 CFA Francs||48|
|1985||551,381||449.37 CFA Francs||n.d.|
|2005||2,760,689||525.34 CFA Francs||111|
Current GDP per capita of Mali registered a peak growth of 295% in the 1970s. But this proved unsustainable and growth consequently scaled back to just 5.20% in the 1980s, followed by growth of 24% in the 1990s.
The mean wage was equivalent to $0.65 per hour in 2009.
Agricultural activities occupy 70% of Mali's labor force and provide 42% of the GDP. Cotton and livestock make up 75%–80% of Mali's annual exports. Small-scale traditional farming dominates the agricultural sector, with subsistence farming (of cereals, primarily sorghum, pearl millet, and maize) on about 90% of the 14,000 square kilometres (1,400,000 ha; 3,500,000 acres) under cultivation.
The most productive agricultural area lies along the banks of the Niger River between Bamako and Mopti and extends south to the borders of Guinea, Ivory Coast, and Burkina Faso. Average rainfall varies in this region from 500 mm (20 in) per year around Mopti to 1,400 mm (55 in) in the south near Sikasso. This area is most important for the production of cotton, rice, pearl millet, maize, vegetables, tobacco and tree crops.
Annual rainfall, critical for Mali's agriculture, has been at or above average since 1993. Cereal production, including rice, has grown annually, and the 1997–98 cotton harvest reached a record 500,000 tons.
Until the mid-1960s, Mali was self-sufficient in grains — pearl millet, sorghum, rice and maize. Diminished harvests during bad years, a growing population, changing dietary habits, and, most importantly, policy constraints on agricultural production resulted in grain deficits almost every year from 1965 to 1986.
Production has rebounded since 1987 due to agricultural policy reforms undertaken by the government and supported by the Western donor nations. Liberalization of producer prices and an open cereals market have created incentives to production. These reforms, combined with adequate rainfall, successful integrated rural agriculture programs in the south, and improved management of the Office du Niger, have led to surplus cereal production over the past five years.
Rice is grown extensively along the banks of the Niger between Ségou and Mopti, with the most important rice-producing area at the Office du Niger, located north of Ségou toward the Mauritanian border. Using water diverted from the Niger, the Office du Niger irrigates about 600 km2 (230 sq mi) of land for rice and sugarcane production. About one-third of Mali's paddy rice is produced at the Office du Niger.
Sorghum is planted extensively in the drier parts of the country and along the banks of the Niger in eastern Mali, as well as in the lake beds in the Niger delta region. During the wet season, farmers near the town of Dire have cultivated wheat on irrigated fields for hundreds of years. Peanuts are grown throughout the country but are concentrated in the area around Kita, west of Bamako.
Mali's resource in livestock consists of millions of cattle, sheep, and goats. Approximately 40% of Mali's herds were lost during the great drought in 1972–74. The level was gradually restored, but the herds were again decimated in the 1983–85 drought. The overall size of Mali's herds is not expected to reach pre-drought levels in the north of the country, where encroachment of the desert has forced many nomadic herders to abandon pastoral activities and turn instead to farming.
The largest concentrations of cattle are in the areas north of Bamako and Ségou extending into the Niger delta, but herding activity is gradually shifting southward, due to the effects of previous droughts. Sheep, goats, and camels are raised to the exclusion of cattle in the dry areas north and east of Timbuktu.
The Niger River is also an important source of fish, providing food for riverside communities; the surplus—smoked, salted, and dried—is exported. Due to drought and diversion of river water for agriculture, fish production has steadily declined since the early 1980s.
Mining has long been an important aspect of the Malian economy. Gold, largest source of Malian exports, is still mined in the southern region: at the end of the 20th century Mali had the third highest gold production in Africa (after South Africa and Ghana). These goldfields, the largest of which lie in the Bambouk Mountains in western Mali (Kenieba Cercle), were a major source of wealth and trade as far back as the Ghana Empire.
Salt mining in the far north, especially in the Saharan oases of Taoudenni and Taghaza have been a crucial part of the Malian economy for at least seven hundred years. Both resources were vital components of the Trans-Saharan trade, stretching back to the time of the Roman Empire.
From the 1960s to the 1990s state owned mining—especially for gold—expanded, followed by a period of expansion by international contract mining.
In 1991, following the lead of the International Development Association, Mali relaxed the enforcement of mining codes which led to greater foreign investment in the mining industry. From 1994 to 2007, national and foreign companies were granted around 150 operating licences along with more than 25 certificates for exploitation and more than 200 research permits. Gold mining in Mali has increased dramatically, with more than 50 tonnes in 2007 from less than half a tonne produced annually at the end of the 1980s. Mining revenue totaled some 300 billion CFA francs in 2007 more than a thirty times increase from the 1995 total national mining revenue of less than 10 billion CFA. Government revenues from mining contracts, less than 1% of the state income in 1989 were almost 18% in 2007.
Gold accounted for some 80% of mining activity in the mid-2000s, while there remain considerable proven reserves of other minerals not currently exploited. Gold has become Mali's largest export, after cotton—historically the basis of Mali's export industry—and livestock. The emergence of gold as Mali's leading export product since 1999 has helped mitigate some of the negative impacts caused by fluctuations in world cotton markets and loss of trade from the Ivorian Civil War to the south. Large private investments in gold mining include Anglogold-Ashanti ($250 million) in Sadiola and Yatela, and Randgold Resources ($140 million) in Morila – both multinational South African companies located respectively in the north-western and southern parts of the country.
While great incomes are produced, most staff employed in the mining industries are from outside Mali, and residents in the areas of intensive mining complain of little benefit from the industry. Populations complain of displacement for the construction of mines: at Sadiola Gold Mine, 43 villages have lost some land to the mine there, while in Fourou, near the large Syama goldmines, 121 villages saw some displacement.
In addition, the continued exploitation of unregulated small scale mining, often by child laborers, supplies a large international gold market in Bamako which feeds into international production. Recent criticism has surfaced around the working conditions, pay, and the widespread use of child labor in these small gold mines (as reported recently in the U.S. Department of Labor's List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor), and the method with which middlemen, in regional centers like Sikasso and Kayes, purchase and transport gold. Gold collected in the towns is sold on—with almost no regulation or oversight—to larger merchant houses in Bamako or Conakry, and eventually to smelters in Europe. Ecological factors, especially pollution of water by mine tailings, is a major source of concern.
During the colonial period, private capital investment was virtually nonexistent, and public investment was devoted largely to the Office du Niger irrigation scheme and to administrative expenses. Following independence, Mali built some light industries with the help of various donors. Manufacturing, consisting principally of processed agricultural products, accounted for about 8% of the GDP in 1990.
Between 1992 and 1995, Mali implemented an economic adjustment program that resulted in economic growth and a reduction in financial imbalances. This was reflected in the increased GDP growth rates (9.6% in 2002) and decreased inflation. GDP in 2002 amounted to US$3.2 billion, made up of agriculture 37.8%, industry 26.4% and services 35.9%.
Effective implementation of macroeconomic stabilization and economic liberalization policies and the stable political situation resulted in good economic performance and enabled Mali to strengthen the foundations for a market-oriented economy and encourage private sector development, backed up by significant progress in implementing the country's privatization program. Agricultural reform measures were aimed at diversifying and expanding production as well as at reducing costs.
Mali's economic performance is fragile, characterized by a vulnerability to climatic conditions, fluctuating terms of trade, dependence on ports in neighboring countries.
Mali produces cotton, cereals and rice. Although locally produced rice now provides competition to imported Asian rice, Mali's primary export is cotton. Livestock exports and industry (producing vegetable and cottonseed oils, and textiles) have experienced growth. Although most of Mali is desert or semi-desert, the Niger River is a potential irrigation source. Exports are in three primary sector products (56% gold, 27% cotton, 5% livestock). Ivory Coast is where most of the country's trade goes through and the crisis previously experienced here had a negative effect on Mali's economy.
The mining industry in Mali has recently attracted renewed interest and investment from foreign companies. Gold and phosphate are the only minerals mined in Mali although deposits of copper and diamonds do also exist. The emergence of gold as Mali's leading export product since 1999 has helped mitigate some of the negative impact of the cotton and Ivory Coast crises.
The development of the oil industry is important due to the country's dependence on the importation of all petroleum products from neighbouring states. Electricity is provided by the parastatal utility, Electricite du Mali.
Mali residents are mostly French speaking. Mali is a major recipient of foreign aid from many sources, including multilateral organizations (most significantly the World Bank, African Development Bank, and Arab Funds), and bilateral programs funded by the European Union, France, United States, Canada, Netherlands, and Germany. Before 1991, the former Soviet Union had been a major source of economic and military aid, including construction of a cement plant and the Kalana gold mine.
Currently, aid from Russia is restricted mainly to training and provision of spare parts. Chinese aid remains high, and Chinese-Malian joint venture companies have become more numerous in the last 3 years, leading to the opening of a Chinese investment center. The Chinese are major participants in the textile industry and in large scale construction projects, including a bridge across the Niger, a conference center, an expressway in Bamako, and a new national stadium scheduled to be completed for the Africa Cup competition in 2002.
In 1998, U.S. assistance reached over $40 million. This included $39 million in sector support through United States Agency for International Development (USAID) programs, largely channeled to local communities through private voluntary agencies; Peace Corps program budget of $2.2 million for more than 160 Volunteers serving in Mali; Self Help and the Democracy Funds of $170,500; and $650,000 designated for electoral support. Military assistance includes $275,000 for the International Military Education Training (IMET) program, $1.6 million for the African Crisis Response Initiative (ACRI), $60,000 for Joint Combined Exercise Training (JCET), and $100,000 for Humanitarian Assistance.
GDP: purchasing power parity – $41.22 billion (2017 est.)
GDP – real growth rate: 5.4% (2017 est.)
GDP – per capita: purchasing power parity – $2,200 (2017 est.)
GDP – composition by sector:
agriculture: 41.8% (2017 est.)
industry: 18.1% (2017 est.)
services: 40.5% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty line: 36.1% (2005 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 2.4% (2001 est.)
highest 10%: 30.2% (2001 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices): 1.8% (2017 est.)
Labor force: 6.447 million (2017 est.)
Labor force – by occupation: agriculture and fishing: 80% (2005 est.) industry and services: 20% (2005 est.)
Unemployment rate: 12%
revenues: 3.075 billion (2017 est.)
expenditures: 3.513 billion (2017 est.)
Industries: food processing; construction; phosphate and gold mining
Industrial production growth rate: 6.3% (2017 est.)
Electricity – production: 2.489 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity – production by source:
fossil fuel: 68%
other: 1% (2017 est.)
Electricity – consumption: 2.982 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity – exports: 0 kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity – imports: 800 million kWh (2016 est.)
Exports: $3.06 billion (2017 est.)
Exports – commodities: cotton 50%, gold, livestock
Exports – partners: Switzerland 31.8%, UAE 15.4%, Burkina Faso 7.8%, Cote dIvoire 7.3%, South Africa 5%, Bangladesh 4.6% (2017)
Imports: $3.644 billion (2017 est.)
Imports – commodities: petroleum, machinery and equipment, construction materials, foodstuffs, textiles
Imports – partners: Senegal 24.4%, China 13.2%, Cote dIvoire 9%, France 7.3% (2017)
Debt – external: $4.192 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
Economic aid – recipient: $691.5 million (2005)
Currency: 1 Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (CFAF) = 100 centimes
Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (CFAF) per US$1 – 647.25 (January 2000), 615.70 (1999), 589.95 (1998), 583.67 (1997), 511.55 (1996), 499.15 (1995)
note: since 1 January 1999, the CFAF is pegged to the euro at a rate of 655.957 CFA francs per euro
Fiscal year: calendar year
The Azalai (Tamasheq, var. Azalay) is a semi-annual salt caravan route practiced by Tuareg traders in the Sahara desert between Timbuktu and the Taoudenni salt mine in Mali, or the act of traveling with a caravan along that route.
The other major West African salt caravan route, heading from around Agadez to Fachi and Bilma in Niger, is called Taghlamt (in Tamasheq, or Taglem or Tagalem in Hausa language).
The two are among the last caravan routes in the Sahara that are still in use. Both caravans have largely been replaced by unpaved truck routes.BRVM
The Bourse Régionale des Valeurs Mobilières SA ("Regional Securities Exchange SA"), or BRVM, is a regional stock exchange serving the following west African countries:
Togo.The exchange is located in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire. Market offices are maintained in each country.
BRVM is a private corporation with 2,904,300,000 CFA francs in capital.
The BRVM Composite Index climbed 18 percent in 2015.Bank of West Africa (BAO)
Banque d'Afrique Occidentale (also B.A.O. or BAO or Banque de l'AOF): (French for Bank of West Africa) was a bank French colonial authorities established in 1901 in Dakar, Sénégal, as the central bank of the colonies of French West Africa.Central Bank of West African States
The Central Bank of West African States (French: Banque Centrale des États de l'Afrique de l'Ouest, BCEAO) is a central bank serving the eight west African countries which share the common West African CFA franc currency and comprise the West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA):
Ivory Coast (Côte d'Ivoire)
TogoThe Bank is active in developing financial inclusion policy and is a member of the Alliance for Financial Inclusion.Child labour
Child labour refers to the exploitation of children through any form of work that deprives children of their childhood, interferes with their ability to attend regular school, and is mentally, physically, socially or morally harmful. Such exploitation is prohibited by legislation worldwide, although these laws do not consider all work by children as child labour; exceptions include work by child artists, family duties, supervised training, and some forms of child work practiced by Amish children, as well as by Indigenous children in the Americas.Child labour has existed to varying extents throughout history. During the 19th and early 20th centuries, many children aged 5–14 from poorer families worked in Western nations and their colonies alike. These children mainly worked in agriculture, home-based assembly operations, factories, mining, and services such as news boys—some worked night shifts lasting 12 hours. With the rise of household income, availability of schools and passage of child labour laws, the incidence rates of child labour fell.In the world's poorest countries, around 1 in 4 children are engaged in child labour, the highest number of whom (29 percent) live in sub-saharan Africa. In 2017, four African nations (Mali, Benin, Chad and Guinea-Bissau) witnessed over 50 percent of children aged 5–14 working. Worldwide agriculture is the largest employer of child labour. The vast majority of child labour is found in rural settings and informal urban economies; children are predominantly employed by their parents, rather than factories. Poverty and lack of schools are considered the primary cause of child labour.Globally the incidence of child labour decreased from 25% to 10% between 1960 and 2003, according to the World Bank. Nevertheless, the total number of child labourers remains high, with UNICEF and ILO acknowledging an estimated 168 million children aged 5–17 worldwide were involved in child labour in 2013.Foreign aid to Mali
Mali is heavily dependent upon foreign aid and is a major recipient of both multilateral and bilateral aid.Liptako-Gourma Authority
The Liptako–Gourma Authority (LGA) is a regional organization seeking to develop the contiguous areas of Mali, Burkina Faso, and Niger.
Created in December 1970, the Authority has as its goal the promotion of the areas mineral, energy, hydraulic, and agricultural resources within a regional framework. The zone covered by the authority corresponds to the border regions of the three countries, and covers an area of 370,000 km², including 19 provinces of Burkina Faso, 4 administrative regions of Mali, and two departments and an urban community of Niger.
This zone is composed entirely of the semi-arid Sahel region. The dominant economic activity is agriculture and livestock herding, but the zone has considerable energy, hydraulic, and mining potential.List of banks in Mali
This is a list of commercial banks in Mali:
Banque Internationale pour le Commerce et l'Industrie au Mali
Banque Malienne de Solidarité
Bank of Africa - Mali
Banque Atlantique Mali
Banque Régionale de Solidarité-Mali
Banque Commerciale du Sahel
Banque de l'Habitat du Mali
Banque Internationale pour le Mali
Banque du Développement du Mali (BDM) (Mali Development Bank)
Banque Nationale de Développement Agricole (BNDA) (National Agricultural Development Bank)
Banque Sahélo-Saharienne pour l'Investissement et le Commerce (BSSIC)
UBA MaliList of companies of Mali
Mali is a landlocked country in West Africa. The country's economy centers on agriculture and fishing. Some of Mali's prominent natural resources include gold, being the third largest producer of gold in the African continent, and salt. About half the population lives below the international poverty line of $1.25 (U.S.) a day.List of regions of Mali by Human Development Index
This is a list of regions of Mali (with 2012 borders) by Human Development Index as of 2017.Note: Gao Region (including the newly created Ménaka Region) and Kidal Region are grouped and have their own HDI.Malian franc
The Malian franc was the independent currency of Mali between 1962 and 1984. Although technically subdivided into 100 centimes, no subdivisions were issued.Mining industry of Mali
The mining industry of Mali is dominated by gold extraction which has given it the ranking as the third largest in Africa. Artisanal miners play a large part in the mining of diamonds. The other minerals extracted are rock salt and semiprecious stones. Phosphates are mined in the Tilemsi Valley. In 2013, gold exports were of the order of 67.4 tonnes, nearly a 50% increase over the production in 2012 which is attributed mainly to the contribution of 20.7 tonnes made by artisanal mining. Gold, followed by cotton, is the top export item making a large contribution to the economy of the country.Outline of Mali
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to Mali:
Mali – landlocked sovereign country located in West Africa. Mali is the seventh most extensive country in Africa, bordering Algeria on the north, Niger on the east, Burkina Faso and the Côte d'Ivoire on the south, Guinea on the south-west, and Senegal and Mauritania on the west.
Consisting of eight regions, Mali's borders on the north reach deep into the middle of the Sahara, while the country's southern region, where the majority of inhabitants live, features the Niger and Senegal rivers. The country's economic structure centers around agriculture and fishing. Some of Mali's natural resources include gold, uranium, and salt. Due to a high incidence of poverty, Mali is considered to be one of the poorest nations in the world.
Present-day Mali was once part of three West African empires that controlled trans-Saharan trade: the Ghana Empire, the Mali Empire (from which Mali is named), and the Songhai Empire. In the late 19th century, Mali fell under French control, becoming part of French Sudan. Mali gained independence in 1959 with Senegal, as the Mali Federation in 1959. A year later, the Mali Federation became the independent nation of Mali in 1960. After a long period of one-party rule, a 1991 coup led to the writing of a new constitution and the establishment of Mali as a democratic, multi-party state.Revenue stamps of Mali
Revenue stamps of Mali have been issued since the country's independence in 1960, and prior to that the colony of French Sudan also had its own revenue stamps. The first issue after independence consisted of revenue stamps of France of the "Daussy" key type overprinted REPUBLIQUE DU MALI.A second set of revenue stamps having a similar design to the first issue but incorporating the coat of arms of Mali was issued in around 1973. Three other sets of stamps have been issued since then, all bearing the coat of arms and local sculptures. All known Mali revenue stamps are inscribed Timbre Fiscal, for general-duty fiscal purposes.Use of revenue stamps has mostly been limited to the southern part of Mali, in part due to the instability in the northern half of the country. Revenues are most commonly seen on passports or other travel and identity documents. Mali revenue stamps are also used in the country's diplomatic missions abroad.West African CFA franc
The West African CFA franc (French: franc CFA; Portuguese: franco CFA or simply franc, ISO 4217 code: XOF) is the currency of eight independent states in West Africa: Benin, Burkina Faso, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo. These eight countries had a combined population of 105.7 million people in 2014, and a combined GDP of US$128.6 billion (as of 2018).The acronym CFA stands for Communauté Financière d'Afrique ("Financial Community of Africa") or Communauté Financière Africaine ("African Financial Community"). The currency is issued by the BCEAO (Banque Centrale des États de l'Afrique de l'Ouest, "Central Bank of the West African States"), located in Dakar, Senegal, for the members of the UEMOA (Union Économique et Monétaire Ouest Africaine, "West African Economic and Monetary Union"). The franc is nominally subdivided into 100 centimes but no centime denominations have been issued.
The Central African CFA franc is of equal value to the West African CFA franc, and is in circulation in several central African states. They are both called the CFA franc.
States with limited