…The Musings of a Strange Guy

Some Facts: From the CIA's World Factbook…

Note: Some of the more boring entries have been removed. For the complete version, go to

http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/mp.html

Introduction Mauritius
Background:
Discovered by the Portuguese in 1505, Mauritius 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.

Geography Mauritius
Location:
Southern Africa, island in the Indian Ocean, east of Madagascar
Geographic coordinates:
20 17 S, 57 33 E
 
Area:
total: 2,040 sq km
note: includes Agalega Islands, Cargados Carajos Shoals (Saint Brandon), and Rodrigues
water: 10 sq km
land: 2,030 sq km
Area – comparative:
almost 11 times the size of Washington, DC
Land boundaries:
0 km
Coastline:
177 km
Maritime claims:
continental shelf: 200 NM or to the edge of the continental margin
territorial sea: 12 NM
exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
Climate:
tropical, modified by southeast trade winds; warm, dry winter (May to November); hot, wet, humid summer (November to May)
Terrain:
small coastal plain rising to discontinuous mountains encircling central plateau
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
highest point: Mont Piton 828 m
Natural resources:
arable land, fish
Land use:
arable land: 49.26%
permanent crops: 2.96%
other: 47.78% (1998 est.)
Irrigated land:
200 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
cyclones (November to April); almost completely surrounded by reefs that may pose maritime hazards
Environment – current issues:
water pollution, degradation of coral reefs
Environment – international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography – note:
the main island, from which the country derives its name, is of volcanic origin and is almost entirely surrounded by coral reefs

People Mauritius
Population:
1,210,447 (July 2003 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 25.1% (male 153,401; female 150,399)
15-64 years: 68.5% (male 413,660; female 415,534)
65 years and over: 6.4% (male 30,673; female 46,780) (2003 est.)
Median age:
total: 29.8 years
male: 29.1 years
female: 30.8 years (2002)
Population growth rate:
0.84% (2003 est.)
Birth rate:
16.1 births/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Death rate:
6.81 deaths/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Net migration rate:
-0.91 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.02 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.66 male(s)/female
total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2003 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: 16.11 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 13.19 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
male: 18.98 deaths/1,000 live births
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 71.8 years
male: 67.82 years
female: 75.85 years (2003 est.)
Total fertility rate:
1.98 children born/woman (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS – adult prevalence rate:
0.1% (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS – people living with HIV/AIDS:
700 (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS – deaths:
less than 100 (2001 est.)
Nationality:
noun: Mauritian(s)
adjective: Mauritian
Ethnic groups:
Indo-Mauritian 68%, Creole 27%, Sino-Mauritian 3%, Franco-Mauritian 2%
Religions:
Hindu 52%, Christian 28.3% (Roman Catholic 26%, Protestant 2.3%), Muslim 16.6%, other 3.1%
Languages:
English (official), Creole, French (official), Hindi, Urdu, Hakka, Bhojpuri
Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 85.6%
male: 88.6%
female: 82.7% (2003 est.)

Government Mauritius
Country name:
conventional long form: Republic of Mauritius
conventional short form: Mauritius
Government type:
parliamentary democracy
Capital:
Port Louis
Administrative divisions:
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:
12 March 1968 (from UK)
National holiday:
Independence Day, 12 March (1968)
Constitution:
12 March 1968; amended 12 March 1992
Legal system:
based on French civil law system with elements of English common law in certain areas
Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: President Sir Anerood JUGNAUTH (since 7 October 2003) and Vice President (vacant; a new Vice President will be determined by assembly elections on NA December 2003)
head of government: Prime Minister Paul BERENGER (since 30 September 2003)
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; election last held 25 February 2002 (next to be held NA 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 and Raouf BUNDHUN stepped down on 30 September 2003
Legislative branch:
unicameral National Assembly (66 seats; 62 elected by popular vote, 4 appointed by the election commission from the losing political parties to give representation to various ethnic minorities; members serve five-year terms)
elections: last held on 11 September 2000 (next to be held by September 2005)
election results: percent of vote by party – MSM/MMM 52.3%, MLP/PMSD 36.9%, OPR 10.8%; seats by party – MSM/MMM 54, MLP/PMSD 6, OPR 2
Judicial branch:
Supreme Court
 
Political pressure groups and leaders:
various labor unions
International organization participation:
ACCT, ACP, AfDB, C, ECA, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, InOC, Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, NAM, OAU, OPCW, PCA, SADC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
 
 
Flag description:
four equal horizontal bands of red (top), blue, yellow, and green

Economy Mauritius
Economy – overview:
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 foreign investment. 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 and responsible fiscal management, has been well poised to take advantage of the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). The government is encouraging foreign investment in the information technology field.
GDP:
purchasing power parity – $12.15 billion (2002 est.)
GDP – real growth rate:
2.3% (2002 est.)
GDP – per capita:
purchasing power parity – $10,100 (2002 est.)
GDP – composition by sector:
agriculture: 6%
industry: 33%
services: 61% (1999 est.)
Population below poverty line:
10% (2001 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Distribution of family income – Gini index:
37 (1987 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
6.4% (2002 est.)
Labor force:
514,000 (1995)
Labor force – by occupation:
construction and industry 36%, services 24%, agriculture and fishing 14%, trade, restaurants, hotels 16%, transportation and communication 7%, finance 3% (1995)
Unemployment rate:
8.8% (2002 est.)
Budget:
revenues: $1.1 billion
expenditures: $1.2 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (1999 est.)
Industries:
food processing (largely sugar milling), textiles, clothing; chemicals, metal products, transport equipment, nonelectrical machinery; tourism
Industrial production growth rate:
8% (2000 est.)
Electricity – production:
1.311 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity – production by source:
fossil fuel: 90.8%
hydro: 9.2%
other: 0% (2001)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity – consumption:
1.219 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity – exports:
0 kWh (2001)
Electricity – imports:
0 kWh (2001)
Oil – production:
0 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil – consumption:
21,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil – exports:
NA (2001)
Oil – imports:
NA (2001)
Agriculture – products:
sugarcane, tea, corn, potatoes, bananas, pulses; cattle, goats; fish
Exports:
$1.6 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Exports – commodities:
clothing and textiles, sugar, cut flowers, molasses
Exports – partners:
UK 27.7%, France 25.5%, US 16.4%, Madagascar 6.2%, Belgium 5% (2002)
Imports:
$1.8 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Imports – commodities:
manufactured goods, capital equipment, foodstuffs, petroleum products, chemicals
Imports – partners:
France 18.4%, South Africa 13.5%, India 7.8%, China 4.5%, UK 4.2% (2002)
Debt – external:
$2.4 billion (2002 est.)
Economic aid – recipient:
$42 million (1997)
Currency:
Mauritian rupee (MUR)
Currency code:
MUR
Exchange rates:
Mauritian rupees per US dollar – 29.96 (2002), 29.13 (2001), 26.25 (2000), 25.19 (1999), 23.99 (1998)
Fiscal year:
1 July – 30 June

Communications Mauritius
Telephones – main lines in use:
280,900 (2000)
Telephones – mobile cellular:
180,000 (2000)
Telephone system:
general assessment: small system with good service
domestic: primarily microwave radio relay trunk system
international: satellite earth station – 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean); new microwave link to Reunion; HF radiotelephone links to several countries
Radio broadcast stations:
AM 4, FM 9, shortwave 0 (2002)
Radios:
420,000 (1997)
Television broadcast stations:
2 (plus several repeaters) (1997)
Televisions:
258,000 (1997)
Internet country code:
.mu
Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
2 (2000)
Internet users:
158,000 (2002)

Transportation Mauritius
Railways:
0 km
Highways:
total: 1,926 km
paved: 1,868 km (including 44 km of expressways)
unpaved: 58 km (2000)
Waterways:
none
Ports and harbors:
Port Louis
Merchant marine:
total: 8 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 23,455 GRT/27,102 DWT
ships by type: cargo 1, combination bulk 4, passenger/cargo 1, refrigerated cargo 2
note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience:, Belgium 1, India 3, Norway 1, Switzerland 2 (2002 est.)
Airports:
5 (2002)
Airports – with paved runways:
total: 2
over 3,047 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2002)
Airports – with unpaved runways:
total: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 2
under 914 m: 1 (2002)

Military Mauritius
Military branches:
National Police Force (includes the paramilitary Special Mobile Force or SMF and National Coast Guard)
Military manpower – availability:
males age 15-49: 341,029 (2003 est.)
Military manpower – fit for military service:
males age 15-49: 171,556 (2003 est.)
Military expenditures – dollar figure:
$9.712 million (FY02)
Military expenditures – percent of GDP:
0.2% (FY02)

 
 
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