About Senegal

Senegal is located in the most western part of the African continent on the Atlantic Ocean where Europe, Africa and the Americas converge and at the crossroads of major air and shipping routes.

Geography

With a surface area of 196 722 km2, it is bordered to the north by Mauritania, by Mali to the east, Guinea and Guinea-Bissau to the south, by Gambia to the west and has a 500 km shoreline on the Atlantic Ocean. Its capital, Dakar (550 km2) is a peninsula located in the extreme west.

Relief, hydrography

A flat country with sandy soils which do not exceed 130 m in altitude except on the south-east border towards Guinea. Three rivers pass through the country from east to west: the Senegal river (1,700 km) in the north, the Gambia river (750 km) and the Casamance river (300 km) in the south.

Climate, vegetation

A dry, tropical climate characterised by two seasons: a dry season from November to June and a rainy season from July to October. Three types of vegetation: forest in the south, savanna in the centre and steppe in the north.

Population

Population (RGPHAE 2013)*
13,508,715
Total population of women
6,773,294
Total population of men
6,735,421
Surface area
196,712
Density (n⁰ of inhabitants/km2) in 2013
69* General census for population, housing, agriculture and farming - 2013

Source: www.ansd.sn: Socio-economic indicators

Political organisation

Senegal is a secular, democratic and social republic. It ensures the equality of all its citizens before law without distinction of origin, race, sex or religion. It respects all religious beliefs.

The official language of the Republic of Senegal is French. National languages are Diola, Malinke, Poular, Serere, Soninke and Wolof and any other national language which is codified.

Multi-party presidential regime: The president of the Republic is elected by universal suffrage for 7 years. The current president of the Republic, Macky Sall, was elected on the 25th March 2012.

Parliament: The Republic of Senegal’s representative assemblies are called the National Assembly and the Senate. Their members have the titles of deputies in the National Assembly and senators.

Administrative organisation

Fourteen regions, whose capitals are their main towns: Dakar, Diourbel, Fatick, Kaffrine, Kédougou, Kaolack, Kolda, Louga, Matam, Saint Louis, Sédhiou, Tambacounda, Thiès, Ziguinchor.

Assets

Senegal has undertaken extensive reforms to open up its economy, ensure greater transparency, secure investments and guarantee the best conditions for its development.  Senegal is a law-abiding state with an ancient democratic culture and political stability which is unparalleled in Africa. Its human resources are of high standards, come from the country’s multiple professional and academic institutions, and have been educated by the world’s most prestigious universities and colleges.

Senegal has exceptional geographic conditions and modern infrastructures.

Located in the most western part of the African continent where Europe, Africa and the Americas converge, the Senegal is an important crossroads of major air and shipping routes.  Its transport and telecommunications infrastructures are of excellent quality and are being constantly developed. In fact, at a very early stage, Senegal took advantage of the possibilities offered by information and communication technologies.

A conducive business environment

Senegal is the second largest economy in French-speaking West Africa, and has a GDP growth of greater than 7%.

Senegal has acquired the legal and regulatory instruments required to facilitate economic activities, encourage investments and create conditions for healthy competition between companies.  Business law is governed by the Organisation for the Harmonisation of Business Law in Africa (OHADA), which allows companies a secure legal environment.

Administrative formalities for economic activities have been simplified by the setting up of a single information point within APIX (Investment Promotion and Major Projects Agency) which facilitates administrative procedures for the creation or modification of companies, manages investment code approvals and the status of free export companies.  Investors can therefore rely on support structures, efficient development and world-class banking and financial services.

Senegal is a political exception in Africa. A valuable asset, confirmed by numerous international and multinational organisations, which have made the capital, Dakar, the base for their regional operations.

The State’s exemplarity at all levels has been raised to a status of dogma and the promotion of good governance is a major theme of state policy.

As the first country in West Africa to have been rated “B+/B” by Standard & Poors, its international recognition has been confirmed by a Ba3 rating with stable perspectives awarded by Moody’s, thanks to its macroeconomic stability, an unlimited access to currencies, an increasing but moderate debt, and support from the international financial community.

Its currency policy is governed by the Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO), whose head office is at Dakar. The fixed parity between the Euro and the CFA franc (€1 = CFA 655) guarantees a stable exchange rate for business relations with partners from the European Union. Senegal shares a common currency with 8 countries in the West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA).

·         Proactive

Looking towards the future, the State has established an accelerated growth strategy intended to boost business investments and fight against poverty in a sustainable manner. This formal commitment has been confirmed by a proactive and innovative policy to promote investments and introduce incentives.

·         Transparent

Macroeconomic objectives and strategic choices are clearly defined and communicated in advance to the private sector. The conditions set and the advantages granted are widely known and identical for both nationals and foreigners. Thanks to its good governance practices, Senegal has gained the trust of international financial institutions.

·         A high-performer

Senegal is the first West African country to be rated “B+ / stable / B” for three consecutive years, (Standards & Poor’s). Inflation is under control, financial returns are increasing and in 2018, the country was amongst the top 5 countries in Africa with the strongest growth.