Mali - Economic sectors

Mali's economy, although potentially rich in natural resources, is still underdeveloped with poor infrastructure and almost 80 percent of its workforce engaged in the rural sector. In 1998, agriculture was the most important sector, providing 46 percent of GDP, with industry 21 percent, and services 33 percent. The sectors rely on narrow bases: agriculture on cotton and livestock; industry on gold; and services on the financial sector. The country has suffered frequent shortages of grain, and the droughts of 1969-74 and 1981-83 devastated the cattle herds in the north. Most of the agricultural production takes place in the south, with cotton production dominating, accounting for 39 percent of total export revenues

in 1997. Industry is dominated by gold mining, which, together with diamonds, accounts for 31 percent of exports. Gold mining has expanded rapidly under a liberal investment code and industry's share of the GDP is expected to rise significantly in the immediate future.

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