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Senegal, See : Flags, Maps

Senegal (Africa)

Introduction ::Senegal


The French colonies of Senegal and the French Sudan were merged in 1959 and granted their independence as the Mali Federation in 1960. The union broke up after only a few months. Senegal joined with The Gambia to form the nominal confederation of Senegambia in 1982. The envisaged integration of the two countries was never carried out, and the union was dissolved in 1989. The Movement of Democratic Forces in the Casamance (MFDC) has led a low-level separatist insurgency in southern Senegal since the 1980s, and several peace deals have failed to resolve the conflict. Nevertheless, Senegal remains one of the most stable democracies in Africa. Senegal was ruled by a Socialist Party for 40 years until current President Abdoulaye WADE was elected in 2000. He was reelected in February 2007 and has amended Senegal's constitution over a dozen times to increase executive power and to weaken the opposition, part of the President's increasingly autocratic governing style. Senegal has a long history of participating in international peacekeeping and regional mediation.

Geography ::Senegal

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Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between
Guinea-Bissau and Mauritania

Geographic coordinates:
14 00 N, 14 00 W

Map references:



total: 196,722 sq km country comparison to the world: 87 land: 192,530 sq km

water: 4,192 sq km


Area - comparative:

slightly smaller than South Dakota

Land boundaries:

total: 2,640 km

border countries: The Gambia 740 km, Guinea 330 km, Guinea-Bissau 338 km, Mali 419 km, Mauritania 813 km


531 km

Maritime claims:

territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin


tropical; hot, humid; rainy season (May to November) has strong southeast winds; dry season (December to April) dominated by hot, dry, harmattan wind


generally low, rolling, plains rising to foothills in southeast

Elevation extremes:

lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m

highest point: unnamed elevation southwest of Kedougou 581 m

Natural resources:

fish, phosphates, iron ore

Land use:

arable land: 12.51%

permanent crops: 0.24%

other: 87.25% (2005)

Irrigated land:

1,200 sq km (2003)

Total renewable water resources:

39.4 cu km (1987)

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):

total: 2.22 cu km/yr (4%/3%/93%)

per capita: 190 cu m/yr (2002)

Natural hazards:

lowlands seasonally flooded; periodic droughts

Environment - current issues:

wildlife populations threatened by poaching; deforestation; overgrazing; soil erosion; desertification; overfishing

Environment - international agreements:

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note:

westernmost country on the African continent; The Gambia is almost an enclave within Senegal

People ::Senegal


12,323,252 (July 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 71

Age structure:

0-14 years: 42.2% (male 2,911,324/female 2,877,804)

15-64 years: 54.8% (male 3,728,664/female 3,786,000)

65 years and over: 3% (male 190,343/female 217,462) (2010 est.)

Median age:

total: 17.9 years

male: 17.1 years

female: 18.7 years (2010 est.)

Population growth rate:

2.579% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 28

Birth rate:

37.27 births/1,000 population (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 23

Death rate:

9.49 deaths/1,000 population (July 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 63

Net migration rate:

-1.99 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 172


urban population: 42% of total population (2008)

rate of urbanization: 3.1% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)

Sex ratio:

at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.87 male(s)/female

total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2010 est.)

Infant mortality rate:

total: 57.7 deaths/1,000 live births country comparison to the world: 36 male: 64.34 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 50.86 deaths/1,000 live births (2010 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:

total population: 59.38 years country comparison to the world: 189 male: 57.48 years

female: 61.34 years (2010 est.)

Total fertility rate:

4.86 children born/woman (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 28

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:

1% (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 54

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:

67,000 (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 57

HIV/AIDS - deaths:

1,800 (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 63

Major infectious diseases:

degree of risk: very high

food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever

vectorborne diseases: Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, dengue fever, malaria, Rift Valley fever, and yellow fever

water contact disease: schistosomiasis

respiratory disease: meningococcal meningitis

animal contact disease: rabies (2009)


noun: Senegalese (singular and plural)

adjective: Senegalese

Ethnic groups:

Wolof 43.3%, Pular 23.8%, Serer 14.7%, Jola 3.7%, Mandinka 3%,
Soninke 1.1%, European and Lebanese 1%, other 9.4%


Muslim 94%, Christian 5% (mostly Roman Catholic), indigenous beliefs 1%


French (official), Wolof, Pulaar, Jola, Mandinka


definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 39.3%

male: 51.1%

female: 29.2% (2002 est.)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):

total: 8 years

male: 8 years

female: 7 years (2008)

Education expenditures:

5.1% of GDP (2008) country comparison to the world: 64

Government ::Senegal

Country name:

conventional long form: Republic of Senegal

conventional short form: Senegal

local long form: Republique du Senegal

local short form: Senegal

former: Senegambia (along with The Gambia), Mali Federation

Government type:



name: Dakar

geographic coordinates: 14 40 N, 17 26 W

time difference: UTC 0 (5 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions:

14 regions (regions, singular - region); Dakar, Diourbel, Fatick, Kaffrine, Kaolack, Kedougou, Kolda, Louga, Matam, Saint-Louis, Sedhiou, Tambacounda, Thies, Ziguinchor


4 April 1960 (from France); note - complete independence achieved upon dissolution of federation with Mali on 20 August 1960

National holiday:

Independence Day, 4 April (1960)


adopted 7 January 2001

Legal system:

based on French civil law system; judicial review of legislative acts in Constitutional Court; the Council of State audits the government's accounting office; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations


18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:

chief of state: President Abdoulaye WADE (since 1 April 2000)

head of government: Prime Minister Soulayemane Ndene NDIAYE (since 1 May 2009)

cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the prime minister in consultation with the president (For more information visit the World Leaders website ) elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term (eligible for a second term) under new constitution; election last held on 25 February 2007 (next to be held in 2012); prime minister appointed by the president

election results: Abdoulaye WADE reelected president; percent of vote - Abdoulaye WADE 55.9%, Idrissa SECK 14.9%, Ousmane Tanor DIENG 13.6%, Moustapha NIASSE 5.9%, other 9.7%

Legislative branch:

bicameral Parliament consisting of the Senate, reinstituted in 2007, (100 seats; 35 members indirectly elected and 65 members appointed by the president) and the National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (150 seats; 90 members elected by direct popular vote and 60 elected by proportional representation from party lists to serve five-year terms)

elections: Senate - last held on 19 August 2007 (next to be held - NA); National Assembly - last held on 3 June 2007 (next to be held in 2012); note - the National Assembly in December 2005 voted to postpone legislative elections originally scheduled for 2006; legislative elections were first rescheduled to coincide with the 25 February 2007 presidential elections and later for 3 June 2007; the election was boycotted by 12 opposition parties, including the former ruling Socialist Party, which resulted in a record-low 35% voter turnout

election results: Senate results - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PDS 34, AJ/PADS 1, 65 appointed by the president; National Assembly results - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - SOPI Coalition 131, other 19

Judicial branch:

Constitutional Court; Council of State; Court of Final Appeals or
Cour de Cassation; Court of Appeals

Political parties and leaders:

African Party of Independence [Majhemout DIOP]; Alliance for the
Republic-Yakaar [Macky Sall]; Alliance of Forces of Progress or AFP
[Moustapha NIASSE]; And-Jef/African Party for Democracy and
Socialism or AJ/PADS [Landing SAVANE]; Democratic League-Labor Party
Movement or LD-MPT [Dr. Abdoulaye BATHILY]; Front for Socialism and
Democracy/Benno Jubel or FSD/BJ [Cheikh Abdoulaye Bamba DIEYE];
Gainde Centrist Bloc or BGC [Jean-Paul DIAS]; Independence and Labor
Party or PIT [Amath DANSOKHO]; Jef-Jel [Talla SYLLA]; National
Democratic Rally or RND [Madior DIOUF]; People's Labor Party or PTP
[El Hadji DIOUF]; Reform Party or PR [Abdourahim AGNE]; Rewmi Party
[Idrissa Seck]; Senegalese Democratic Party or PDS [Abdoulaye WADE];
Socialist Party or PS [Ousmane Tanor DIENG]; SOPI Coalition
[Abdoulaye WADE] (a coalition led by the PDS); Union for Democratic
Renewal or URD [Djibo Leyti KA]

Political pressure groups and leaders:

other: labor; students; Sufi brotherhoods, including the Mourides and Tidjanes; teachers

International organization participation:

ACP, AfDB, AU, CPLP (associate), ECOWAS, FAO, FZ, G-15, G-77, IAEA,
UNIDO, Union Latina, UNMIL, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WADB (regional),

Diplomatic representation in the US:

chief of mission: Ambassador Fatou Danielle DIAGNE

chancery: 2112 Wyoming Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 234-0540
FAX: [1] (202) 332-6315

consulate(s) general: Houston, New York

Diplomatic representation from the US:

chief of mission: Ambassador Marcia S. BERNICAT

embassy: Avenue Jean XXIII at the corner of Rue Kleber, Dakar

mailing address: B. P. 49, Dakar

telephone: [221] 33-829-2100
FAX: [221] 33-822-2991

Flag description:

three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), yellow, and red with a small green five-pointed star centered in the yellow band; green represents Islam, progress, and hope; yellow signifies natural wealth and progress; red symbolizes sacrifice and determination; the star denotes unity and hope

note: uses the popular Pan-African colors of Ethiopia; the colors from left to right are the same as those of neighboring Mali and the reverse of those on the flag of neighboring Guinea

National anthem:

name: "Pincez Tous vos Koras, Frappez les Balafons" (Pluck Your Koras, Strike the Balafons)

lyrics/music: Leopold Sedar SENGHOR/Herbert PEPPER

note: adopted 1960; the lyrics were written by Leopold Sedar SENGHOR, Senegal"s first president; the anthem is sometimes played incorporating the Koras (harp-like stringed instruments) and Balafons (types of xylophones) mentioned in the title

Economy ::Senegal

Economy - overview:

Senegal relies heavily on donor assistance. The country's key export industries are phosphate mining, fertilizer production, and commercial fishing. The country is also working on iron ore and oil exploration projects. In January 1994, Senegal undertook a bold and ambitious economic reform program with the support of the international donor community. Government price controls and subsidies have been steadily dismantled. After seeing its economy contract by 2.1% in 1993, Senegal made an important turnaround, thanks to the reform program, with real growth in GDP averaging over 5% annually during 1995-2008. Annual inflation had been pushed down to the single digits. The country was adversely affected by the global economic downturn in 2009 and GDP growth fell below 2%. As a member of the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU), Senegal is working toward greater regional integration with a unified external tariff and a more stable monetary policy. High unemployment, however, continues to prompt illegal migrants to flee Senegal in search of better job opportunities in Europe. Under the IMF's Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) debt relief program, Senegal benefited from eradication of two-thirds of its bilateral, multilateral, and private-sector debt. In 2007, Senegal and the IMF agreed to a new, non-disbursing, Policy Support Initiative program which was completed in 2010. Senegal received its first disbursement from the $540 million Millennium Challenge Account compact it signed in September 2009 for infrastructure and agriculture development. In 2010, the Senegalese people protested against frequent power cuts. The government pledged to expand capacity by 2012 and to promote renewable energy but until Senegal has more capacity, more protests are likely and economic activity will be hindered. During the year, bakers protested government price controls on bread. Foreign investment in Senegal is constrained by Senegal's business environment, which has slipped in recent years, and by perceptions of corruption.

GDP (purchasing power parity):

$23.86 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 117 $22.96 billion (2009 est.)

$22.56 billion (2008 est.)

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate):

$12.66 billion (2010 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:

3.9% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 86 1.8% (2009 est.)

3.3% (2008 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP):

$1,900 (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 191 $1,900 (2009 est.)

$1,900 (2008 est.)

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector:

agriculture: 14.9%

industry: 21.4%

services: 63.6% (2010 est.)

Labor force:

5.53 million (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 68

Labor force - by occupation:

agriculture: 77.5%

industry and services: 22.5% (2007 est.)

Unemployment rate:

48% (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 191

Population below poverty line:

54% (2001 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:

lowest 10%: 2.5%

highest 10%: 30.1% (2005)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:

41.3 (2001) country comparison to the world: 55 41.3 (1995)

Investment (gross fixed):

25.9% of GDP (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 39

Public debt:

32.1% of GDP (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 86 29.6% of GDP (2009 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

1.2% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 28 -1% (2009 est.)

Central bank discount rate:

4.25% (31 December 2009) country comparison to the world: 95 4.75% (31 December 2008)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:

Stock of narrow money:

$2.8 billion (31 December 2010 est) country comparison to the world: 112 $2.903 billion (31 December 2009 est)

Stock of broad money:

$4.603 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 123 $4.745 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of domestic credit:

$3.516 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 115 $3.412 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:

Agriculture - products:

peanuts, millet, corn, sorghum, rice, cotton, tomatoes, green vegetables; cattle, poultry, pigs; fish


agricultural and fish processing, phosphate mining, fertilizer production, petroleum refining; iron ore, zircon, and gold mining, construction materials, ship construction and repair

Industrial production growth rate:

3.8% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 89

Electricity - production:

1.88 billion kWh (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 133

Electricity - consumption:

1.384 billion kWh (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 142

Electricity - exports:

0 kWh (2008 est.)

Electricity - imports:

0 kWh (2008 est.)

Oil - production:

0 bbl/day (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 132

Oil - consumption:

39,000 bbl/day (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 105

Oil - exports:

5,653 bbl/day (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 102

Oil - imports:

42,850 bbl/day (2007 est.) country comparison to the world: 93

Oil - proved reserves:

0 bbl (1 January 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 125

Natural gas - production:

50 million cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 83

Natural gas - consumption:

50 million cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 107

Natural gas - exports:

0 cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 129

Natural gas - imports:

0 cu m (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 134

Natural gas - proved reserves:

NA cu m (1 January 2010 est.)

Current account balance:

-$1.046 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 137 -$1.356 billion (2009 est.)


$2.112 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 129 $1.902 billion (2009 est.)

Exports - commodities:

fish, groundnuts (peanuts), petroleum products, phosphates, cotton

Exports - partners:

Mali 20.12%, India 9.84%, Gambia 5.58%, France 5.02%, Italy 4.23% (2009)


$4.474 billion (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 124 $4.549 billion (2009 est.)

Imports - commodities:

food and beverages, capital goods, fuels

Imports - partners:

France 19.58%, UK 9.64%, China 8.08%, Netherlands 5.64%, Thailand 4.75%, US 3.97% (2009)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:

$2.2 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 95 $2.123 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Debt - external:

$3.885 billion (31 December 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 118 $3.462 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Exchange rates:

Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XOF) per US dollar - 507.71 (2010), 470.9 (2009), 447.81 (2008), 481.83 (2007), 522.89 (2006)

Communications ::Senegal

Telephones - main lines in use:

278,800 (2009) country comparison to the world: 118

Telephones - mobile cellular:

6.902 million (2009) country comparison to the world: 82

Telephone system:

general assessment: good system with microwave radio relay, coaxial cable and fiber-optic cable in trunk system

domestic: above-average urban system with a fiber-optic network; nearly two-thirds of all fixed-line connections are in Dakar where a call-center industry is emerging; expansion of fixed-line services in rural areas needed; mobile-cellular service is expanding rapidly

international: country code - 221; the SAT-3/WASC fiber optic cable provides connectivity to Europe and Asia while Atlantis-2 provides connectivity to South America; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2007)

Broadcast media:

state-run Radiodiffusion Television Senegalaise (RTS) operates 2 TV stations; a few private TV subscription channels rebroadcast foreign channels without providing any local news or programs; RTS operates a national radio network and a number of regional FM stations; a large number of community and private-broadcast radio stations are available; transmissions of at least 2 international broadcasters are accessible on FM in Dakar (2007)

Internet country code:


Internet hosts:

241 (2010) country comparison to the world: 190

Internet users:

1.818 million (2009) country comparison to the world: 76

Transportation ::Senegal


20 (2010) country comparison to the world: 135

Airports - with paved runways:

total: 10

over 3,047 m: 2

1,524 to 2,437 m: 7

914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2010)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

total: 10

1,524 to 2,437 m: 6

914 to 1,523 m: 3

under 914 m: 1 (2010)


gas 43 km; refined products 8 km (2009)


total: 906 km country comparison to the world: 94 narrow gauge: 906 km 1.000 meter gauge (2008)


total: 13,576 km country comparison to the world: 127 paved: 3,972 km (includes 7 km of expressways)

unpaved: 9,604 km (2003)


1,000 km (primarily on Senegal, Saloum, and Casamance rivers) (2008) country comparison to the world: 64

Merchant marine:

total: 1 country comparison to the world: 155 by type: passenger/cargo 1 (2010)

Ports and terminals:


Military ::Senegal

Military branches:

Senegalese Armed Forces: Army, Senegalese Navy (Marine Senegalaise),
Senegalese Air Force (Armee de l'Air du Senegal) (2009)

Military service age and obligation:

18 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service; conscript service obligation - 2 years (2004)

Manpower available for military service:

males age 16-49: 3,211,279

females age 16-49: 3,250,128 (2010 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:

males age 16-49: 2,109,080

females age 16-49: 2,287,510 (2010 est.)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:

male: 157,468

female: 156,689 (2010 est.)

Military expenditures:

1.4% of GDP (2005 est.) country comparison to the world: 111

Transnational Issues ::Senegal

Disputes - international:

The Gambia and Guinea-Bissau attempt to stem separatist violence, cross border raids, and arms smuggling into their countries from Senegal's Casamance region, and in 2006, respectively accepted 6,000 and 10,000 Casamance residents fleeing the conflict; 2,500 Guinea-Bissau residents fled into Senegal in 2006 to escape armed confrontations along the border

Refugees and internally displaced persons:

refugees (country of origin): 19,630 (Mauritania)

IDPs: 22,400 (approximately 65% of the IDP population returned in 2005, but new displacement is occurring due to clashes between government troops and separatists in Casamance region) (2007)

Illicit drugs:

transshipment point for Southwest and Southeast Asian heroin and South American cocaine moving to Europe and North America; illicit cultivator of cannabis


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