Country Summary

Macroeconomic performance and outlook

Despite the security crisis, Mali’s economy has remained resilient. In 2019, the country recorded 5% real GDP growth (driven by good gold and cotton production), a budget deficit of 3.1% of GDP, and 0.4% inflation. Public debt was 35.5% of GDP at the end of 2018.

However, the economy remains underindustrialized, and the manufacturing industry struggles to develop. This leads to an enormous need for imports and to a current account in deficit (5.4% of GDP in 2019). On the demand side, investment is particularly low, at 9.5% of GDP for the private sector and 8.7% for the public sector.

Tax revenue is weak (14.3% of GDP), below the ECOWAS standard of 20%. Analysis of public debt sus- tainability in May 2018 indicated that the risk of Mali’s debt overhang was moderate. Mali’s debt policy, with the IMF’s Extended Credit Facility, is prudent. But the maturity of domestic debt, with 59% of it falling due over 2019–21, is of great concern.

Tailwinds and headwinds

Improving the political and security situation should allow for real GDP growth of 4.9% in 2020 and 2021. In March 2019, Mali adopted a National Strategic Frame- work for Economic Revitalization and Sustainable Development 2019–23 and is working to implement the Plan for Public Finance Management Reform 2017–21.

The government passed the National Accord Law and launched the Inclusive National Dialogue, aimed at calming the social climate and finding solutions to the current crisis. For security, progress has been made thanks to implementing the peace accord through the 

accelerated disarmament, demobilization, and reinte- gration program and operationalizing the interim author- ities in the north. The government has also established an integrated security plan for Central Mali and a politi- cal framework for managing the crisis.

The creation of the African Free Trade Zone and the ECOWAS single currency (eco) zone should strengthen Mali’s integration into the region. To promote the private sector, the government launched the 5.5 billion CFA franc Economic Infrastructure Program aiming to create 8,700 kilometers of roads and six bridges by 2023.

Mali has faced a security and humanitarian crisis since 2012, with armed groups occupying two-thirds of the national territory and with 5.2 million people short on food.

The economy depends heavily on gold and cotton (86% of exports), and value chains are poorly developed (3% of cotton is processed). With little diversification, the economy depends on the prices of raw materials on international markets. The accumulation of payment arrears for domestic debt presents a risk of stalling eco- nomic activity and the private sector.

A mainly young population (67%) is growing at 3.1% a year. The number of jobs created every year (44,520 jobs) cannot absorb labor supply (300,000). The work- force’s poor qualifications are aggravated by discrep- ancy between the supply of training and the require- ments of the labor market.

The country faces critical infrastructure deficits: only 3% of the classified road network is blacktopped and in good order; the electricity gap is 140MW, and 53% of the population lacks access to electricity. In addition, only 75% of children are in primary education, and 41% in secondary education while 75% of the population lacks access to health services.

Health sector preparedness

Mali’s health system is unable to face a widespread health crisis. The 2019 Global Health Security Index ranked Mali 147 among 195 countries globally, with a score of 29 (of 100), placing it among countries least prepared to face the crisis and manage an epidemic. This ranking is due to the health system’s low capacity to treat the sick and protect health workers (score of 13), prevention (23.4), and early detection and reporting of epidemics (25.5). Mali has one of the world’s lowest health expenditures at $31 per capita in 2017, or half the standard of $60 recommended by the WHO.

Policy responses

In addition to the security issues, which remain a central concern, the Malian authorities are concentrating their efforts on health and socioeconomic measures to fight COVID–19. To this end, the government adopted a FCFA 34.12 billion COVID–19 prevention and response action plan, FCFA 20 billion of which is financed by the national budget. The authorities also announced a set of fiscal, social, and economic measures, with the overall cost estimated at FCFA 500 billion. The measures are meant to support businesses (particularly small and medium businesses and industries) by facilitating access to loans (FCFA 20 billion to the private sector guarantee fund) and reducing cash flow constraints (FCFA 100 billion for reim- bursements of domestic debt, FCFA 43.6 billion for tax remittances and postponements of tax and duty payment deadlines). The measures are also establishing a special fund of FCFA 100 billion for supporting the most vulnera- ble households, strengthening price controls to avoid price gouging, and free distribution of 56,000 tons of grain and 16,000 tons of livestock feed.

Source: African Economic Outlook 2020

Fixed Income

Issuance strategy 

In the  West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU), Mali is the state with the lowest debt ratio. In 2018, the ratio of domestic debt to GDP is estimated at 12.45% and the ratio of external debt is estimated at 23.25%.

Yield curve

As part of its market development activities, the UMOA Titres Agency has carried out a project to set up issuers' yield curves of the Public Securities Market of the UEMOA zone (MTP) with objective:

  • to improve transparency on the MTP
  •  to contribute to better price formation during the auctions
  • to make investors aware of the relationship between primary and secondary markets
  • to provide local / international investors with a reference of price for securities issued by the States

The conditions for  yield curves constructions  have not yet all been observed on the (MTP). It was thus retained:

  • in the short term, to develop a first version of yield  curves taking into account the specificities of the MTP, while being sufficient evolutionary to support its development;
  • in the medium / long term, define the necessary ways and means to Continuous improvement yield curves models following the evolution of the MTP.

Mali  government securities yield curve extends to 6 years.

Yield curve calculation models 

The yield curve is constructed on the basis of primary market returns. The model used is the Nelson-Siegel Svensson .  

Interpolation methods 

Linear interpolation. 

Yield curve managed by

Agence UMOA-Titres is responsible for the yield curve. 

Display platform 

Agence UMOA-Titres website 

Challenges in building an efficient yield curve 

  • Fragmentation of the market

  • Narrow investor base: comprising homogeneous investors such as banks. 

  • Low liquid secondary market

Guide to Buying Bonds

Procedures for market participation

The primary subscription of Treasury bonds and bonds is reserved for credit institutions, management and intermediation companies (SGI) as well as regional financial institutions with a settlement account in the books of the Central Bank.

Other investors, natural or legal persons, irrespective of the State in which they are established, may also subscribe to Treasury bonds and bonds on the primary and secondary market through credit institutions and SGI. located in the territory of the Union.

Emissions on the primary market of the MTP (Marché des Titres Publics) are made by auction.Each issuance should be advertised at least 7 days before the auction by describing the issuance characteristics. Bidders submit to the Central Bank, sealed in a ballot box reserved for this purpose, a submission form specifying the amounts and the interest rates or the price offered. Submissions may also be made electronically in the conditions defined by the Central Bank.

Later than one hour after the deadline for bids submission, the National Directions of the BCEAO transmit electronically, by fax or any other means of rapid communication accepted by the Central Bank, the main submissions to the principal agency of the BCEAO, which is organizing the auction.

Treasury bills are eligible for refinancing by the Central Bank. Investors and the Central Bank may buy or sell Treasury bonds on the secondary market, awarded by private treaty. In this context, they are required to post the purchase price and sale, which they are willing to transact.

Bond issues can be done by  syndication  managed by CREPMF.[]

Treasury bonds can be traded on the secondary market. As such, they can be exchanged at the Regional Stock Exchange (BRVM) or outside the BRVM.

Settlement cycle

On the primary market by auction, the settlement date is T+1 of the issue date.On the secondary market, the payment of purchases of Treasury bonds and bonds by the primary subscribers is made by debiting their settlement account with the Central Bank on the value date of the issue of these securities. settlement date is the first business day following the conclusion of the transaction for domestic transactions and the third business day following the conclusion of the transaction for transactions between two (2) Member States. The Contracting Parties are free to agree on a term greater than these minima for the settlement of transactions, IF the instructions given by both parties are identical, the transaction is directly offset on the agreed value date. In the event of a discrepancy, the Central Bank suspends the transaction and notifies both parties of this decision for correction.


Treasury bills and Treasury bonds incomes are tax-free throughout the territory of the Member States of the WAEMU.But for non-members, the tax rates are different from one country to another. In Mali, the tax rate one securities income is equal to maximum 6%.


Rating Agency Current rating Outlook
Moody’s B3 Stable
Fitch No rating No outlook
Standard and Poor’s No rating No outlook

Primary Dealers

The securities market has a system of Specialists in Treasuries. The credit institutions and the SGIs  may be approved as SVT under the conditions specified by an Instruction of the Central Bank. As such, they must respect certain commitments that confer special advantages. These commitments and benefits are specified by an instruction from the Central Bank.

List of Primary Dealers











Boulevard du 22 octobre











Market restrictions

Openness to international investors

No restrictions prevent foreign investors from trading in the public securities market. They may subscribe to Treasury bonds and bonds on the primary and secondary markets through credit institutions and SGI located within the Union.

Capital controls

There are no significant limits on foreign investment nor are there generally differences in treatment of foreign and national investors, either in terms of the level of foreign ownership or sector of investment.

Restriction on FX and profit repatriation

WAEMU has unified foreign exchange regulations. Under these regulations, there are no restrictions for transfers within the community, and designated commercial banks are able to approve routine foreign exchange transactions inside the community. The transfer abroad of the proceeds of liquidation of foreign direct investments no longer requires prior governments approval.

Documents & Resources

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