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Officially the Republic of Mali, it consists of 8 regions with its northern borders reaching deep in to the Sahara Desert and its southern area having the Niger and the Senegal Rivers running through. A landlocked country in Western Africa, its capital is Bamako. The major source of its economy comes from agriculture and fishing, but it does have natural resources of gold and salt. Most of its population (14.5 million) lives in the southern region, with half being below the international poverty line. An ancient country that was once a part of the empires that controlled the trans-Saharan trade, it has had a number of years of political turmoil of coups and military conflict.
Stained by its historical French connections, Francophone Mali is one of the poorest countries in Africa and despite its violent recent history, the country has attempted to maintain and continue its telecom and Internet infrastructure. As of 2014 it had a mere 7% Internet penetration rate (16,955,536 pop) of which only 4.5% jump onto Facebook. Mali has one of the most expensive rates in Africa if you want to get connected, due to the complicated situation of what seems to be a cozy duopoly between the dominant providers and not enough competitive pressure in a small market. There are no Wi-Fi hot spots in Mali as in other African cities. Power is another factor in a country where temperatures hover around the C40s, it is an expensive and unstable commodity, exactly the same as connecting to the Internet.
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