Mauritania Basic Information

By | July 21, 2022
Basic data
Capital Noukchot
Population 4.65 million
Language Arabic
Religion Islam
State system republic
Head of State Mohamed Ould Ghazouani
Head of government Mohamed Ould Bilal
Currency name Ouguiya

Mauritania Basic Information

Time shift -1 (in summer -2)
Economy 2021
Nominal GDP (billion USD) 27
Economic growth (%) 4.5
Inflation (%) 3.5
Unemployment (%) 10.3

Mauritania is an Islamic republic with an area of ​​over one million square kilometers and is the eleventh largest country in Africa. With a population of around million inhabitants, however, it is among the least populated.

Economically, Mauritania is one of the least developed countries on the African continent. The situation in the country is complicated by the complex national situation that results from history. Slavery was abolished in this Saharan country only in 1981. A significant problem is also the lack of water and ongoing desertification, which results in the migration of the rural population to the cities. Above all, the capital Noukhottu, where up to a quarter of the country’s total population lives.

The economy of Mauritania is based on the mining of iron ore, of which Mauritania is one of the largest exporters in the world. This Summary Territorial Information is processed for a country that is so-called accredited. The information is provided in an abbreviated form.

Basic information about the territory


  • System of governance and political tendencies in the country
  • Foreign policy of the country
  • Population

The system of governance and political tendencies in the country

The official name of the country is the Islamic Republic of Mauritania

The Islamic Republic of Mauritania is a state establishment of a republic with a significant influence of Islamic law, which is combined with the French civil law system, with a large role of the president (the so-called presidential system). Check cancermatters to learn more about Mauritania political system.

The country has gone through several military coups – the last one was in August 2008. The democratically elected president, Sidi Ould Cheikh Abdellahi, was deposed. The mastermind of the coup, General Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, became the head of the country. Subsequently, new presidential elections were held in July 2009, in which Abdel Azíz was elected president of the country. Abdel Aziz’s military coup disqualified the country in the eyes of the foreign public. Key players such as the USA, France, the EU and the African Union condemned the coup and demanded a return to democratic order as soon as possible.

During 2010, however, relations with foreign partners gradually began to recover. The legislative power is represented by a bicameral parliament. The upper chamber is the Senate, composed of 56 members elected indirectly (by members of city councils) for a six-year term. The lower house, the National Assembly, is composed of 146 deputies elected by direct universal suffrage for five-year terms. The National Assembly is not completely independent of the executive (eg it can be dissolved very easily by the country’s president). Parliamentary elections, originally planned for 2011, took place in November and December 2013, along with municipal elections. Part of the opposition refused to participate in them due to lack of transparency

In March 2019, the new president of Mauritania was Mr. Mohamed Ould El-Ghazaouani, a former senior military representative of the country.

You can find the current composition of the government at:

Foreign policy of the country

Mauritania gained independence from France in 1960 and became a member of the United Nations in 1961. Outside of France, Mauritania maintains close relations mainly with its neighbors (Morocco, Algeria, Mali and Senegal). Relations with Morocco are currently the most prominent. Several European countries such as France, Great Britain or Spain are also represented in the capital Noukhottu. The European Union is also represented in Mauritania, which is very active in the country, especially in the framework of development aid. Check prozipcodes for Mauritania defense and foreign policy.

Mauritania is a member of the G5 Sahel, which is an association of several countries in the region. Its mission is closer cooperation, especially in security matters. The headquarters of the G5 Sahel is located in Noukhott, the capital of Mauritania.


The population is around million. Annual growth is around 2.7%. The population density is one of the lowest in the world and amounts to 4 inhabitants/km2. The unemployment rate is around 11% and the literacy rate is around 50% of the population. The religion practiced by 99% of the population is Islam.

The official language is Arabic (the local dialect is called Hassanija). French is also used in official communication. Other national languages ​​are also used in the country – Pular, Soninke and Wolof.