Mauritius Flag Icon

Mauritius Country Guide

Explore Mauritius in Africa

Mauritius with the capital city Port Louis is located in Africa (Southern Africa, island in the Indian Ocean). It covers some 2,041 square kilometres (almost 11 times the size of Washington, DC) with 1,260,000 citizens.

Map of the area of  in

The topography includes small coastal plain rising to discontinuous mountains encircling central plateau. The average density of population is approximately 618 per km². The notable climate conditions in Mauritius can be described as tropical, modified by southeast trade winds with warm, dry winter (May to November), hot, wet, humid summer (November to May). Possible natural disasters include cyclones (November to April) or almost completely surrounded by reefs that may pose maritime hazards.

To reach someone in Mauritius dial +230 prior to a number. There are 379,100 installed telephones. And there are 1,087,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks commonly support frequencies of 900 Mhz. Websites registered in this country end with the top level domain ".mu". If you want to bring electric equipment on your trip (e.g. laptop power supply), note the local power outlet of 230V - 50Hz.

About the flag and history of Mauritius

Four equal horizontal bands of red (top), blue, yellow, and green; red represents self-determination and independence, blue the Indian Ocean surrounding the island, yellow has been interpreted as the new light of independence, golden sunshine, or the bright future, and green can symbolize either agriculture or the lush vegetation of the island.

Although known to Arab and Malay sailors as early as the 10th century, Mauritius was first explored by the Portuguese in the 16th century and subsequently settled by the Dutch - who named it in honor of Prince Maurits van NASSAU - in the 17th century. The French assumed control in 1715, developing the island into an important naval base overseeing Indian Ocean trade, and establishing a plantation economy of sugar cane. The British captured the island in 1810, during the Napoleonic Wars. Mauritius remained a strategically important British naval base, and later an air station, playing an important role during World War II for anti-submarine and convoy operations, as well as the collection of signals intelligence. Independence from the UK was attained in 1968. A stable democracy with regular free elections and a positive human rights record, the country has attracted considerable foreign investment and has earned one of Africa's highest per capita incomes.


Geography Quick-Facts

Summary Continent: Africa
Capital: Port Louis
Size 2,040 square kilometers (km² or sqkm) or 788 square miles (mi² or sqmi)
almost 11 times the size of Washington, DC
Population 1,260,000
Currency Name: Rupee, Currency Code: MUR
Country Top Level Domain (cTLD) .mu
Telephone Country Prefix +230
Mobile Phone Connections 1,087,000
Landline Phone Connections 379,100

Country Position in World Rankings

Information about single country attributes and how these compare against the rest of the world. The information below is compiled with data from 2013. As such, it may differ a bit to the Information above in the text (which is from 2010).

Geography

Value name Value World Rank
Area 2,040 (sq km) 181

People and Society

Value name Value World Rank
Population 1,322,238 155
Population growth rate 0.68 (%) 142
Birth rate 13.62 (births/1,000 population) 147
Death rate 6.79 (deaths/1,000 population) 139
Maternal mortality rate 60.00 (deaths/100,000 live births) 99
Infant mortality rate 10.89 (deaths/1,000 live births) 138
Life expectancy at birth 74.94 (years) 101
Total fertility rate 1.78 (children born/woman) 157
Health expenditures 6.00 (% of GDP) 108
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate 1.00 (%) 49
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS 8,800 102
HIV/AIDS - deaths 500 85
Obesity - adult prevalence rate 18.50 (%) 105
Education expenditures 3.70 (% of GDP) 122
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24 21.7 (%) 52

Economy

Value name Value World Rank
GDP (purchasing power parity) 20,530,000,000 130
GDP - real growth rate 3.30 (%) 101
GDP - per capita (PPP) 15,800 87
Labor force 617,800 155
Unemployment rate 8.00 (%) 94
Distribution of family income - Gini index 39 68
Investment (gross fixed) 23.30 (% of GDP) 62
Taxes and other revenues 21.1 (% of GDP) 155
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-) -4.30 (% of GDP) 145
Public debt 61.80 (% of GDP) 43
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 4.70 (%) 134
Commercial bank prime lending rate 8.92 (%) 103
Stock of narrow money 2,293,000,000 123
Stock of broad money 26,170,000,000 80
Stock of domestic credit 11,750,000,000 93
Market value of publicly traded shares 6,506,000,000 80
Industrial production growth rate 3.30 (%) 83
Current account balance -1,433,000,000 124
Exports 2,631,000,000 136
Imports 5,111,000,000 128
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold 2,848,000,000 110
Debt - external 5,768,000,000 109

Energy

Value name Value World Rank
Electricity - production 2,889,000,000 (kWh) 129
Electricity - consumption 2,687,000,000 (kWh) 135
Electricity - installed generating capacity 885200 (kW) 126
Electricity - from fossil fuels 75.2 (% of total installed capacity) 100
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants 6.7 (% of total installed capacity) 122
Electricity - from other renewable sources 18.1 (% of total installed capacity) 7
Refined petroleum products - consumption 24,710 (bbl/day) 124
Refined petroleum products - imports 22,750 (bbl/day) 102
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy 4,545,000 (Mt) 127

Communications

Value name Value World Rank
Telephones - main lines in use 374,600 107
Telephones - mobile cellular 1,294,000 150
Internet hosts 51,139 95
Internet users 290,000 132

Transportation

Value name Value World Rank
Airports 5 183
Roadways 2,066 (km) 173
Merchant marine 4 132

Military

Value name Value World Rank
Military expenditures 0.10 (% of GDP) 171

Data based on CIA facts book 2010 & 2013, wikipedia, national statistical offices and their census releases

List of current world heritage sites

Name Since
Aapravasi Ghat
In the district of Port Louis, lies the 1,640 m2 site where the modern indentured labour diaspora began. In 1834, the British Government selected the island of Mauritius to be the first site for what it called ‘the great experiment’ in the use of ...
2006
Le Morne Cultural Landscape
Le Morne Cultural Landscape, a rugged mountain that juts into the Indian Ocean in the southwest of Mauritius was used as a shelter by runaway slaves, maroons, through the 18th and early years of the 19th centuries. Protected by the mountain’s isola ...
2008