Mali is a Saharan republic situated in Western Africa. It is totally surrounded by 7 countries ; Algeria in the north, the Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, Guinea in the south, Niger in the east, Senegal and Mauritania in the west. It has 7,000 kms of border and covers an area of 1,240,192 km2 (more than twice the area of France and 30 times the area of Switzerland).
The capital, Bamako, is a cosmopolitan city of around one million inhabitants.
The official language is French but other languages are used in teaching and adult literacy programmes. Among these are Bambara, Soninke, Songhaï, Dogon, Senoufo, Arabic, Tamachek and Bozo.
The unit of currency is the CFA Franc (the former French franc). 100FCFA = 0.15€