Aw Bissimila Bienvenue Welcome
Welcome to Republic of Mali.
Malian are very friendly people and have high hospitality. Once you exit from the arrival hall, you will be approached by many people. These people will offer you to buy prepaid mobile phone’s SIM card or for currency exchange, or offer helps to carry your luggage, or to offer you accommodation and hotel or to provide transport to the city of Bamako.
Then you will notice of this monument of hospitality that welcomes you.
Monument a l’hospitalite
You need not to worry about your family as you would able to contact them easily. Orange (before known as Ikatel) is one of the mobile phone and internet provider. The other one is Malitel.
The biggest Orange’s billboard in Mali also welcomes you
Remember; Mali, land of welcome and hospitality. Mali is GOLD COUNTRY
Welcome to Gold Country
Mali, officially the Republic of Mali (French: République du Mali), is a landlocked country in Western Africa. It is the seventh largest country in Africa. It borders 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. Its straight borders on the north stretch into the centre of the Sahara, while in the south, where the majority of inhabitants live, features the Niger and Senegal rivers.
Map of Mali
The area of 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 takes its name), and the Songhai Empire. In the late 1800s, Mali fell under French control, becoming part of French Sudan.
The Sudanese Republic and Senegal became independent of France in 1960 as the Mali Federation on 20th June 1960. Following the withdrawal of Senegal from the federation in August 1960, the Sudanese Republic became the independent nation of Mali on 22nd September 1960, with Modibo Keïta as president.
The name of the country, Mali comes from the Bambara word for hippopotamus, the name of its capital city, Bamako comes from the Bambara word meaning “place of crocodiles“.
Mali is the world’s 24th-largest country at total area of 1.24 million sq km (compared to Malaysia; 329,750 sq km). Total land area is 1.22 million sq km and the balance of 20,000 sq km is water area.
Mali climate ranges from subtropical in the south to arid in the north. Hot and dry season between February to June; and rainy, humid, and mild season in June to November; cool and dry season during November to February.
Terrain – mostly flat to rolling northern plains covered by sand; savanna in south, rugged hills in northeast. Mali’s landscape is impressingly diverse and beautiful: plains, plateaux and cliffs, and the immensely vast desert.
Natural Resources – gold, phosphates, kaolin, salt, limestone, uranium, gypsum, granite, hydropower. Recently Mali concentrate in exploring of petroleum, which known of its existence since 1970’s. Note: bauxite, iron ore, manganese, tin, and copper deposits are known but not exploited.
Region and Cercles
Mali is divided into 8 regions (régions) and 1 district, and subdivided into 49 cercles, totalling 288 arrondissements.
Mali- Region’s map
The regions and district are:
- Tombouctou (Timbuktu)
- Bamako (Capital special district)
Mali‘s population is approximately 11,995,402 with an annual growth rate of 2.7% (July 2007 est.). Most Malians live in rural areas, with only 18 percent residing in urban centers. Major ethnic groups in Mali are the Mande (e.g., Bamana or Bambara, Jula, Malinke), who comprise 50 percent of the population; Peul or Fulbe, 17 percent; Voltaic, 12 percent (e.g. Bobo, Senufo, Minyanka); Tuareg and Moor, 10 percent; Songhai, 6 percent; and other, 5 percent.
Major languages: French, Bambara, Berber, Arabic
Major religions: Islam (90%), Christian (1%) and indigenous beliefs 9(%)
Grand Mosque at Djenne
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. Cotton, millet, rice, corn, vegetables, peanuts; cattle, sheep and goats are among major agriculture products. The most productive agricultural area lies along the banks of the Niger River, the Inland Niger Delta and the southwestern region around Sikasso.
Industrial activity is concentrated on processing farm commodities and food processing. The other industry involves are in construction, phosphate and gold mining. Mali is Africa’s third leading gold producer after world giants South Africa and Ghana.
GDP – per capita (PPP) is estimated at $1,200 (2007 est.) Mali is heavily dependent on foreign aid and vulnerable to fluctuations in world prices for cotton, its main export, along with gold. Mali‘s great potential wealth lies in mining and the production of agricultural commodities and livestock.
There is West African currency union; Banque Centrale des États de l’Afrique de l’Ouest (BCEAO).
1 CFA (Communaute Financiere Africaine) franc = 100 centimes.
Currently FCFA pegged to Euro at 1 Euro = 655 FCFA
Politics and government
Mali is a constitutional democracy governed by the constitution which provides for a separation of powers among the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government. The system of government can be described as “semi-presidential’.
Executive power is vested in a president, who is elected to a five-year term by universal suffrage and is limited to two terms. The president serves as chief of state and commander in chief of the armed forces. A prime minister appointed by the president serves as head of government and in turn appoints the Council of Ministers. The unicameral National Assembly is Mali’s sole legislative body, consisting of deputies elected to five-year terms. The assembly holds two regular sessions each year, during which it debates and votes on legislation that has been submitted by a member or by the government.
Malian musical traditions are derived from the griots or jalis The music of Mali is best known outside of Africa for the kora. Though Mali’s literature is less famous than its music, Mali has always been one of Africa’s liveliest intellectual centers. Mali’s literary tradition is largely oral, with jalis reciting or singing histories and stories from memory
The varied everyday culture of Malians reflects the country’s ethnic and geographic diversity. Most Malians wear flowing, colorful robes called boubous that are typical of West Africa.
Rice and millet are the staples of Malian cuisine, which is heavily based on cereal grains. Grains are generally prepared with sauces made from leaves such spinach or baobab leaves, with tomato, or with peanut sauce, and may be accompanied by pieces of grilled meat (typically chicken, mutton, beef, or goat). Malian cuisine varies regionally.
The most popular sport in Mali is football. Basketball is another major sport; the Mali women’s national basketball team is the only African basketball team competing at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Traditional wrestling (la lutte) is also somewhat common, though its popularity has declined in recent years. The game wari, a mancala variant, is a common pastime. *****