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Mauritius

 
Flag of Mauritius
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Coordinates:
20.28 S  57.55 E

 
 
Introduction  Geography  People  Government  Economy
 
Communications  Transportation  Military  Transnational Issues

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Legend: DefinitionDefinition Field ListingField Listing Rank OrderRank Order
   Introduction    Mauritius Top of Page
Background:
Definition Field Listing
Although known to Arab and Malay sailors as early as the 10th century, Mauritius was first explored by the Portuguese in 1505; it was subsequently held by the Dutch, French, and British before independence was attained in 1968. A stable democracy with regular free elections and a positive human rights record, the country has attracted considerable foreign investment and has earned one of Africa's highest per capita incomes. Recent poor weather and declining sugar prices have slowed economic growth, leading to some protests over standards of living in the Creole community.
   Geography    Mauritius Top of Page
Location:
Definition Field Listing
Southern Africa, island in the Indian Ocean, east of Madagascar
Geographic coordinates:
Definition Field Listing
20 17 S, 57 33 E
Map references:
Definition Field Listing
Political Map of the World
Area:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 2,040 sq km
land: 2,030 sq km
water: 10 sq km
note: includes Agalega Islands, Cargados Carajos Shoals (Saint Brandon), and Rodrigues
Area - comparative:
Definition Field Listing
almost 11 times the size of Washington, DC
Land boundaries:
Definition Field Listing
0 km
Coastline:
Definition Field Listing
177 km
Maritime claims:
Definition Field Listing
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
Climate:
Definition Field Listing
tropical, modified by southeast trade winds; warm, dry winter (May to November); hot, wet, humid summer (November to May)
Terrain:
Definition Field Listing
small coastal plain rising to discontinuous mountains encircling central plateau
Elevation extremes:
Definition Field Listing
lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
highest point: Mont Piton 828 m
Natural resources:
Definition Field Listing
arable land, fish
Land use:
Definition Field Listing
arable land: 49.02%
permanent crops: 2.94%
other: 48.04% (2005)
Irrigated land:
Definition Field Listing
220 sq km (2003)
Natural hazards:
Definition Field Listing
cyclones (November to April); almost completely surrounded by reefs that may pose maritime hazards
Environment - current issues:
Definition Field Listing
water pollution, degradation of coral reefs
Environment - international agreements:
Definition Field Listing
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note:
Definition Field Listing
the main island, from which the country derives its name, is of volcanic origin and is almost entirely surrounded by coral reefs
   People    Mauritius Top of Page
Population:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
1,240,827 (July 2006 est.)
Age structure:
Definition Field Listing
0-14 years: 23.9% (male 149,486/female 147,621)
15-64 years: 69.5% (male 430,288/female 431,753)
65 years and over: 6.6% (male 31,939/female 49,740) (2006 est.)
Median age:
Definition Field Listing
total: 30.8 years
male: 30 years
female: 31.8 years (2006 est.)
Population growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
0.82% (2006 est.)
Birth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
15.43 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Death rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
6.86 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Net migration rate:
Definition Field Listing
-0.4 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Sex ratio:
Definition Field Listing
at birth: 1.02 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.64 male(s)/female
total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2006 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 14.59 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 17.23 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 11.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2006 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total population: 72.63 years
male: 68.66 years
female: 76.66 years (2006 est.)
Total fertility rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
1.95 children born/woman (2006 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0.1% (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
700 (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
less than 100 (2001 est.)
Nationality:
Definition Field Listing
noun: Mauritian(s)
adjective: Mauritian
Ethnic groups:
Definition Field Listing
Indo-Mauritian 68%, Creole 27%, Sino-Mauritian 3%, Franco-Mauritian 2%
Religions:
Definition Field Listing
Hindu 48%, Roman Catholic 23.6%, other Christian 8.6%, Muslim 16.6%, other 2.5%, unspecified 0.3%, none 0.4% (2000 census)
Languages:
Definition Field Listing
Creole 80.5%, Bhojpuri 12.1%, French 3.4%, English (official; spoken by less than 1% of the population), other 3.7%, unspecified 0.3% (2000 census)
Literacy:
Definition Field Listing
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 85.6%
male: 88.6%
female: 82.7% (2003 est.)
   Government    Mauritius Top of Page
Country name:
Definition Field Listing
conventional long form: Republic of Mauritius
conventional short form: Mauritius
Government type:
Definition Field Listing
parliamentary democracy
Capital:
Definition Field Listing
Port Louis
Administrative divisions:
Definition Field Listing
9 districts and 3 dependencies*; Agalega Islands*, Black River, Cargados Carajos Shoals*, Flacq, Grand Port, Moka, Pamplemousses, Plaines Wilhems, Port Louis, Riviere du Rempart, Rodrigues*, Savanne
Independence:
Definition Field Listing
12 March 1968 (from UK)
National holiday:
Definition Field Listing
Independence Day, 12 March (1968)
Constitution:
Definition Field Listing
12 March 1968; amended 12 March 1992
Legal system:
Definition Field Listing
based on French civil law system with elements of English common law in certain areas; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations
Suffrage:
Definition Field Listing
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
Definition Field Listing
chief of state: President Sir Anerood JUGNAUTH (since 7 October 2003) and Vice President Abdool Raouf BUNDHUN (since 25 February 2002)
head of government: Prime Minister Navinchandra RAMGOOLAM (since 5 July 2005)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president on the recommendation of the prime minister
elections: president and vice president elected by the National Assembly for five-year terms (eligible for a second term); election last held 25 February 2002 (next to be held in 2007); prime minister and deputy prime minister appointed by the president, responsible to the National Assembly
election results: Karl OFFMANN elected president and Raouf BUNDHUN elected vice president; percent of vote by the National Assembly - NA%; note - Karl OFFMANN stepped down on 30 September 2003
Legislative branch:
Definition Field Listing
unicameral National Assembly (70 seats; 62 elected by popular vote, 8 appointed by the election commission to give representation to various ethnic minorities; members serve five-year terms)
elections: last held on 3 July 2005 (next to be held in 2010)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - AS 38, MSM/MMM 22, OPR 2; appointed seats - AS 4, MSM/MMM 2, OPR 2
Judicial branch:
Definition Field Listing
Supreme Court
Political parties and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
Alliance Sociale or AS; Hizbullah [Cehl Mohamed FAKEEMEEAH]; Mauritian Labor Party or MLP [Navinchandra RAMGOOLAM]; Mauritian Militant Movement or MMM [Paul BERENGER] - in coalition with MSM; Mauritian Social Democrat Party or PMSD [Charles Xavier-Luc DUVAL]; Militant Socialist Movement or MSM [Pravind JUGNAUTH] - governing party; Rodrigues Movement or MR [Joseph (Nicholas) Von MALLY]; Rodrigues Peoples Organization or OPR [Serge CLAIR]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
various labor unions
International organization participation:
Definition Field Listing
ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, C, COMESA, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, InOC, Interpol, IOC, IPU, ISO, ITU, MIGA, NAM, OIF, OPCW, PCA, SADC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the US:
Definition Field Listing
chief of mission: Ambassador Usha JEETAH
chancery: 4301 Connecticut Avenue NW, Suite 441, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 244-1491, 1492
FAX: [1] (202) 966-0983
Diplomatic representation from the US:
Definition Field Listing
chief of mission: Ambassador John PRICE
embassy: 4th Floor, Rogers House, John Kennedy Street, Port Louis
mailing address: international mail: P. O. Box 544, Port Louis; US mail: American Embassy, Port Louis, Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-2450
telephone: [230] 202-4400
FAX: [230] 208-9534
Flag description:
Definition Field Listing
four equal horizontal bands of red (top), blue, yellow, and green
   Economy    Mauritius Top of Page
Economy - overview:
Definition Field Listing
Since independence in 1968, Mauritius has developed from a low-income, agriculturally based economy to a middle-income diversified economy with growing industrial, financial, and tourist sectors. For most of the period, annual growth has been in the order of 5% to 6%. This remarkable achievement has been reflected in more equitable income distribution, increased life expectancy, lowered infant mortality, and a much-improved infrastructure. Sugarcane is grown on about 90% of the cultivated land area and accounts for 25% of export earnings. The government's development strategy centers on expanding local financial institutions and building a domestic information telecommunications industry. Mauritius has attracted more than 9,000 offshore entities, many aimed at commerce in India and South Africa, and investment in the banking sector alone has reached over $1 billion. Mauritius, with its strong textile sector, has been well poised to take advantage of the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).
GDP (purchasing power parity):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$16.09 billion (2005 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate):
Definition Field Listing
$6.681 billion (2005 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
3% (2005 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$13,100 (2005 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture: 5.9%
industry: 29.8%
services: 64.3% (2005 est.)
Labor force:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
570,000 (2005 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture and fishing 14%, construction and industry 36%, transportation and communication 7%, trade, restaurants, hotels 16%, finance 3%, other services 24% (1995)
Unemployment rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
9.6% (2005 est.)
Population below poverty line:
Definition Field Listing
10% (2001 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
Definition Field Listing
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
Definition Field Listing
37 (1987 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
5% (2005 est.)
Investment (gross fixed):
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
21.2% of GDP (2005 est.)
Budget:
Definition Field Listing
revenues: $1.377 billion
expenditures: $1.77 billion; including capital expenditures of $NA (2005 est.)
Public debt:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
67.5% of GDP (2005 est.)
Agriculture - products:
Definition Field Listing
sugarcane, tea, corn, potatoes, bananas, pulses; cattle, goats; fish
Industries:
Definition Field Listing
food processing (largely sugar milling), textiles, clothing, chemicals, metal products, transport equipment, nonelectrical machinery, tourism
Industrial production growth rate:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
8% (2000 est.)
Electricity - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
1.941 billion kWh (2003)
Electricity - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
1.805 billion kWh (2003)
Electricity - exports:
Definition Field Listing
0 kWh (2003)
Electricity - imports:
Definition Field Listing
0 kWh (2003)
Oil - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 bbl/day (2003 est.)
Oil - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
21,000 bbl/day (2003 est.)
Oil - exports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA bbl/day
Oil - imports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
NA bbl/day
Natural gas - production:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 cu m (2003 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0 cu m (2003 est.)
Current account balance:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
-$342 million (2005 est.)
Exports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$1.949 billion f.o.b. (2005 est.)
Exports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
clothing and textiles, sugar, cut flowers, molasses
Exports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
UK 31.9%, France 20.2%, US 11.4%, Madagascar 6.3%, Italy 5.4% (2005)
Imports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$2.507 billion f.o.b. (2005 est.)
Imports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
manufactured goods, capital equipment, foodstuffs, petroleum products, chemicals
Imports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
France 11.4%, South Africa 10.8%, India 8.8%, China 5.7%, Finland 5.5%, Bahrain 5.1%, Germany 4.9% (2005)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$1.366 billion (2005 est.)
Debt - external:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$3.246 billion (2005 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
Definition Field Listing
$42 million (1997)
Currency (code):
Definition Field Listing
Mauritian rupee (MUR)
Exchange rates:
Definition Field Listing
Mauritian rupees per US dollar - 29.496 (2005), 27.499 (2004), 27.902 (2003), 29.962 (2002), 29.129 (2001)
Fiscal year:
Definition Field Listing
1 July - 30 June
   Communications    Mauritius Top of Page
Telephones - main lines in use:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
353,800 (2004)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
510,000 (2004)
Telephone system:
Definition Field Listing
general assessment: small system with good service
domestic: primarily microwave radio relay trunk system
international: country code - 230; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean); new microwave link to Reunion; HF radiotelephone links to several countries; fiber optic submarine cable (SAT-3/WASC/SAFE) provides connectivity to Europe and Asia
Radio broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
AM 4, FM 9, shortwave 0 (2002)
Television broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
2 (plus several repeaters) (1997)
Internet country code:
Definition Field Listing
.mu
Internet hosts:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
4,954 (2005)
Internet users:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
180,000 (2005)
   Transportation    Mauritius Top of Page
Airports:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
6 (2005)
Airports - with paved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 2
over 3,047 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2005)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 3
under 914 m: 1 (2005)
Roadways:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 2,254 km
paved: 2,254 km (including 75 km of expressways) (2003)
Merchant marine:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
total: 8 ships (1000 GRT or over) 26,308 GRT/28,488 DWT
by type: bulk carrier 4, passenger/cargo 2, refrigerated cargo 2
foreign-owned: 6 (India 4, Switzerland 2) (2005)
Ports and terminals:
Definition Field Listing
Port Louis
   Military    Mauritius Top of Page
Military branches:
Definition Field Listing
no regular military forces; National Police Force; Special Mobile Force; National Coast Guard
Manpower available for military service:
Definition Field Listing
males age 18-49: 313,271 (2005 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$12.04 million (2005 est.)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
0.2% (2005 est.)
   Transnational Issues    Mauritius Top of Page
Disputes - international:
Definition Field Listing
Mauritius claims the Chagos Archipelago (UK-administered British Indian Ocean Territory), and its former inhabitants, who reside chiefly in Mauritius, were granted UK citizenship but no right to patriation in the UK; claims French-administered Tromelin Island
Illicit drugs:
Definition Field Listing
minor consumer and transshipment point for heroin from South Asia; small amounts of cannabis produced and consumed locally; significant offshore financial industry creates potential for money laundering, but corruption levels are relatively low and the government appears generally to be committed to regulating its banking industry

This page was last updated on 20 July, 2006


Source: CIA Factbook