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Mali Economy Profile

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Economy - overview

Among the 25 poorest countries in the world, landlocked Mali depends on gold mining and agricultural exports for revenue. The country's fiscal status fluctuates with gold and agricultural commodity prices and the harvest; cotton and gold exports make up around 80% of export earnings. Mali remains dependent on foreign aid.

Economic activity is largely confined to the riverine area irrigated by the Niger River; about 65% of Mali’s land area is desert or semidesert. About 10% of the population is nomadic and about 80% of the labor force is engaged in farming and fishing. Industrial activity is concentrated on processing farm commodities. The government subsidizes the production of cereals to decrease the country’s dependence on imported foodstuffs and to reduce its vulnerability to food price shocks.

Mali is developing its iron ore extraction industry to diversify foreign exchange earnings away from gold, but the pace will depend on global price trends. Although the political coup in 2012 slowed Mali’s growth, the economy has since bounced back, with GDP growth above 5% in 2014-17, although physical insecurity, high population growth, corruption, weak infrastructure, and low levels of human capital continue to constrain economic development. Higher rainfall helped to boost cotton output in 2017, and the country’s 2017 budget increased spending more than 10%, much of which was devoted to infrastructure and agriculture. Corruption and political turmoil are strong downside risks in 2018 and beyond.

GDP (purchasing power parity)
$41.22 billion (2017 est.)
$39.1 billion (2016 est.)
$36.97 billion (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

GDP (official exchange rate)
$15.37 billion (2017 est.)
GDP - real growth rate
5.4% (2017 est.)
5.8% (2016 est.)
6.2% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)
$2,200 (2017 est.)
$2,100 (2016 est.)
$2,100 (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

Gross national saving
16.5% of GDP (2017 est.)
15.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
15.4% of GDP (2015 est.)
GDP - composition, by end use
household consumption: 82.9% (2017 est.)
government consumption: 17.4% (2017 est.)
investment in fixed capital: 19.3% (2017 est.)
investment in inventories: -0.7% (2017 est.)
exports of goods and services: 22.1% (2017 est.)
imports of goods and services: -41.1% (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.)
Labor force
6.447 million (2017 est.)
Labor force - by occupation
agriculture: 80%
industry and services: 20% (2005 est.)
Unemployment rate
7.9% (2017 est.)
7.8% (2016 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24
total: 16.9%
male: 15.3%
female: 18.8% (2018 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share
lowest 10%: 3.5%
highest 10%: 25.8% (2010 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index
40.1 (2001)
50.5 (1994)
Budget
revenues: 3.075 billion (2017 est.)
expenditures: 3.513 billion (2017 est.)
Taxes and other revenues
20% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)
-2.9% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Public debt
35.4% of GDP (2017 est.)
36% of GDP (2016 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)
1.8% (2017 est.)
-1.8% (2016 est.)
Central bank discount rate
16% (31 December 2010)
4.25% (31 December 2009)
Commercial bank prime lending rate
5.2% (31 December 2017 est.)
5.3% (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of narrow money
$3.04 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$2.553 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of broad money
$3.04 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$2.553 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of domestic credit
$5.972 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$4.891 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares

NA

Agriculture - products
cotton, millet, rice, corn, vegetables, peanuts; cattle, sheep, goats
Industries
food processing; construction; phosphate and gold mining
Industrial production growth rate
6.3% (2017 est.)
Current Account Balance
-$886 million (2017 est.)
-$1.015 billion (2016 est.)
Exports
$3.06 billion (2017 est.)
$2.803 billion (2016 est.)
Exports - commodities
cotton, gold, livestock
Exports - partners
Switzerland 31.8%, UAE 15.4%, Burkina Faso 7.8%, Cote d'Ivoire 7.3%, South Africa 5%, Bangladesh 4.6% (2017)
Imports
$3.644 billion (2017 est.)
$3.403 billion (2016 est.)
Imports - commodities
petroleum, machinery and equipment, construction materials, foodstuffs, textiles
Imports - partners
Senegal 24.4%, China 13.2%, Cote d'Ivoire 9%, France 7.3% (2017)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold
$647.8 million (31 December 2017 est.)
$395.7 million (31 December 2016 est.)
Debt - external
$4.192 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$3.981 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home
$3.845 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$3.266 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad
$286.2 million (31 December 2017 est.)
$62.2 million (31 December 2016 est.)
Exchange rates
Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XOF) per US dollar -
605.3 (2017 est.)
593.01 (2016 est.)
593.01 (2015 est.)
591.45 (2014 est.)
494.42 (2013 est.)
Fiscal year
calendar year

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on Friday, November 27, 2020

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