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To which language should you translate to localize in Mali?

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Mali a french-speaking country located in West Africa. The country has a rich history inherited from great empires and kingdoms whose famous figures are: Soundiata Keita, Kankou Moussa, Tieba Traore, Babemba Traore etc…In Mali, there are 13 national languages which are: bamanankan, syenara, mamara, malinké, soninké, bozo, tamasheq, hasanya, songhaï, dogoso, kasonké, bomou and fulfudé. French is the official language of the country. 

Each language in Mali has got several language variants. An example is the case of Tamasheq language with several variants: Tawellemet, Tadghaq and Taneslemt.

 Far from being barriers, the national languages spoken the country are bridges that connect malian communities. As a result of the introduction of the bilingual curriculum, the national languages are taught in primary schools and even in higher education. Languages are equal i.e there is no minority nor dominant language. With a large number of speakers, its geographical extension and its use in public services, markets, musics, bamanankan is the lingua Franca in Mali. Mali is 95 % a muslim country. Its culture includes traditions passed down through the ages from generation to generation. In Mali, there are two twin cities, Timbuktu and Djenne which are UNESCO World Heritage sites since 1988.


Mali tăqqăl ăddăwla ăssewălăn tăfrănsit tahăt Afreqiya tan ătarăm. Ăddăwla tila ăttarex hăs d oyyăn ɣǝrmăn d ǝzǧărăn barăḍăn wi ǝknanen ătwizzi ǝd mosli hullăn dăɣ ălɣalim šund Sunǧata Keyta, Kanku Musa, Ciyeba Trawore, Babemba Trawore ǝd meddăn ǝyăḍ.Dăɣ Mali, illanăt marawăt tăwalen ǝd karăḍăt ămosnen: Tabănbrăt, Siyenara, Mămara, Mălenke, Sonenke,tăbozot, Tamăšăq, Xăssaniya, Tehătit,Tăkadot, Kăsonke, Bomu ǝd Tăfulănt.Tăfrănsit inta s dăɣ ǝššǝreɣa tawălt tan ăddăwla tan Mali.

Hăk tawălt n Mali tila tǝnǝmmuzlăy ăǧǧotnen.Šund ălmităl tawălt tan Tamăšăq, tillăy Tawǝllǝmǝt, Tădɣăq ǝd Taneslemt.

Dăɣ as wăr ăqqel-năt mărsalăn, tawălen n Mali amosnăt tǝsseɣen ti osăɣnen tusaten ǧer măn năsnăt.Tawălen n Mali tawasăɣrinăt dăɣ lăkkolăn wi mădroyen hăkǝd dăɣ wi măqqornen ɣor uǧǝš n asărti n teɣăre dăɣ-snăt ǝd tăfrănsit. Tawălen ogdăh-năt ăwen ălmăɣna amos as wăr ti tilla tawălt toǧarăt wăla mădroyyăt fel ta yăḍăt. Tabănbarăt s inta s tawălt ta toǧarăt ǝmmǝsewilăn ,tǝǧit dăɣ ăkal tolăs ăssewalăn tăt eddinăt dăɣ dăggăn n ălxǝdmăt, hebutăn, isuhăɣ, inta a tăqqalăt dăɣ Mali tawălt ta s tanăfhăm-năt tusaten ǧer măn năsnăt s ǝǧit.

Mali tăqqăl ăkal n ănislăm s 95 dăɣ temeḍe. Tumăst net hăn tăt ăgnatăn ǝṭṭafăn eddinăt dăɣ ăzzamăn s ăzzamăn. Mali ,hanăt tăt sanătăt tǝɣărmaten,Timbuktu ǝd Ǧenne, s ităwănnu tǝknewen ăqqalnen terše n ălɣalim tan Inesko ɣur ăwatăy wan 1988.

Aguissa, English/Spanish translator



Official language

National languages
Soninke, Hasanya Arabia, Bomu, Tamasheq, Songhay, Fulfulde, Bozo, Maninkakan, Dogon, Syenara, Mamara, and Xasongaxango.

Other languages

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Capitals: Bamako
Currency: West African CFA franc
Population: 20.25 m
Population density: 16.6/km2


GDP: 17.465 billion USD (2020)
GDP per capita: 2 347 988 USD‎(2020)
Purchasing Power: 94.3 (2014)
Exports: 4.87 billion USD (2020)


Unemployment rate 9.78% (2019)
43.14% (2019)
33.07% (2018)
Internet users24% penetration, 4.85million


Numbering system
Arabic numerals and comma as decimal separator.

Date format: dd – mm – yyyy
Time: 24h time system
Country code: 00223

Language data sources: Worldatlas/Britannica//EF/Wikipedia; Demography data sources: IMF/Worldometers; Conventions data source: Wikipedia; Economy data sources: WTO/OEC/CIA/Esomar/Datareportal; Statistics data sources: Datareportal/WorldBank/UN/UNESCO/CEIC/IMF/Culturalatlas/Commisceoglobal

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Facts and data


4.11 billion USD (2020). Refined Petroleum ($813M), Light Pure Woven Cotton ($184M), Packaged Medicaments ($162M), Cement ($130M), and Broadcasting Equipment ($86.1M), importing mostly from Senegal ($960M), Cote d’Ivoire ($616M), China ($435M), France ($354M), and Austria ($146M).

Financial inclusion factors (over 15 years of  age)
• 18% have an account with a financial institution
• 6.7% have a credit card
• 24% have a mobile money account
• 5.7% make online purchases

Ease of doing business
It is easy to conduct business (rated 67 out of 100). Ranked 26th out of 53 African countries. Ranked 148th out of 190 countries worldwide (2019, World Bank)

4.87 billion USD (2019). Gold ($4.5B), Raw Cotton ($97.1M), Other Oily Seeds ($60M), Rough Wood ($52.1M), and Other Vegetable Residues ($25.4M), exporting mostly to United Arab Emirates ($3.22B), Switzerland ($1.27B), China ($148M), India ($34M), and Mauritania ($31.3M).

Economic freedom
‘‘Mostly not free’ (rated 58.1 out of 100). Ranked 13th out of 52 African countries. Ranked 103rd out of 186 countries worldwide (2019, Heritage Foundation and Wall Street Journal).

Global Innovation Index

Ranked 21st out of 27 Sub-Sahara African countries, 124th out of 132 worldwide.

The Global Innovation Index captures the innovation
ecosystem performance of 132 economies and tracks the most recent global innovation trends.

Economy data sources: WTO/OEC/CIA/Esomar/Datareportal

Service Exports (2014)

Source: OEC

Servic Imports (2014)

Source: OEC

Most specialised products by RCA Index

Specialisation is measured using Revealed Comparative Advantage, an index that takes the ratio between Mali observed and expected exports in each product

Source: OEC

Export Opportunities by Relatedness

Relatedness measures the distance between a country's current exports and each product, the barchart show only products that Mali is not specialized in

Source: OEC


Media language most used language is English, followed by Afrikaans, but all the 11 official languages are represented.

Information channels
The media environment in Bamako and the rest of the south is relatively open, but the presence of armed militant groups in the north poses dangers for media workers, says Freedom House. Reporters Without Borders says there is a significant degree of media pluralism, but a lack of money means that outlets are susceptible to editorial influence from those who fund them. Radio is the leading medium. There are hundreds of stations, operated by private and community broadcasters and by the state-run Office de Radiodiffusion-Television du Mali (ORTM). The TV sector is much smaller. Almost all daily and weekly newspapers publish from Bamako. Circulation figures are low. L’Essor is the leading title. The BBC broadcasts in Bamako (88.9 FM) and Radio France Internationale (RFI) is widely available on FM. By mid-2019, 12.5 million Malians were online – around 63% of the population ( Social media use is concentrated in the cities and among young people. Facebook is the top platform, followed by Instagram. The authorities have sometimes restricted access to social media to obstruct attempts to mobilise protesters and blocked internet access in 2018 ahead of a presidential run-off vote.

The press

L’Essor – state-owned daily
Le Republican – private daily
L’Independent – private daily
Les Echos – private daily
Le Combat – private daily


Office de Radiodiffusion Television du Mali (ORTM) – public network of national and regional stations
Mikado FM – operated by UN’s MINUSMA mission
Radio Bamakan – community station, BamakoRadio Liberte – private, Bamako
Radio Kledu – private, Bamako
Radio Kayira – private, Bamako
Radio Rurale – network of community stations

News agency

MaliWeb – news portal
Malijet – news website
aBamako – news website
Maliactu – news website
AMAP – Agence Malienne de Presse

Media data source: BBC

Internet Data

Internet users
24% penetration, 4.85million

Share of web traffic by device
 68.5% mobile phones, 30.9% computers (laptops and desktops), 0.5% tablet devices

Mobile connection as a percentage of total population

Percentage of mobile connections that are broadband (3G-5G)

Most popular web search engines
 Google (92.35%), Bing (3.66%),Yahoo (1.41%), Ecosia (1.15%) Qwant (0.84%), Duckduckgo (0.35%)

Most used social media
Facebook (91.97%), Pinterest (3.11%),  Instagram (2.4%), Twitter(1.61%), YouTube (0.89%), Linkedin (0.01%)

Internet data sources: Datareportal/Statcounter

Social statistics

Life expectancy
59.44 yrs (2020)

30.1% (2020)

Healthcare Expenditure
 6.9% of GDP (2018)

Average age of the population
21.5 yrs (2020) 

The social and professional salary-related mindset in Mali pose the same challenges that they do in Western societies. All questions related to women’s participation in society create serious local challenges for the majority of Malian women and religious authorities as some feminists attempt to classify professions in public or presidential politics.

The majority of Malian women do not understand what “gender equality” means. The more socially and spiritually active a family is, the more emphasis is put on the spirituality of a person, which entails respect of the particular faith’s values and practices. Therefore, in Mali, the question of “gender equality” must take into account these values, principles and religious laws.

Sex outside of marriage, cohabitation, adultery, sodomy and homosexuality are serious sins akin to heresy, heathenism, or, in showing support for any one of these, renouncing one’s faith.

Present-day Malian society has an underlying structure that grew out of the traditions of three religions: traditional sectarian movements (9%), Islam (90%) and Christianity (1%). In Mali, social activities are organized around the daily Muslim prayers that occur from dusk to dawn. Malians follow the rules of their religion (Islam) in the workplace by leaving the office to pray during Dohr ( from 1:30 to 2:00 pm) and Ashr (from 3:30 to 4:00).

Malian society is influenced more by family or social cohesiveness than by social divisions such as class with the exception of the existing segregation of people of certain casts such as the Nyamakalaw (who are blacksmiths, jeliw otherwise incorrectly known as travelling Black musicians and poets, cobblers, weavers, etc)!

People of caste may jokingly or honestly approach a hòròn person (someone of noble birth) at work without being offensive.

Social statistics sources: WorldBank/UN/UNESCO/CEIC/IMF

The Data Factbook is a work in progress project. Our community is helping us to fill it up always with new and updated data. Your contribution is precious. If you want to help us, please write your advices at

Languages research

Main languages in Mali

The geographical distribution of languages that you will find in the maps published in this section is a work in progress. Our community is helping us to fill it up with always new and updated data. Your contribution is precious. If you want to help us, please write to

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