Maldives

Country Summary

2022 population pyramid

Introduction

Background

A sultanate since the 12th century, the Maldives archipelago became a British protectorate in 1887. Three years after independence in 1965, the islands established themselves as a republic.

Geography

Area

total: 298 sq km

land: 298 sq km

water: 0 sq km

Climate

tropical; hot, humid; dry, northeast monsoon (November to March); rainy, southwest monsoon (June to August)

Natural resources

fish

People and Society

Population

390,164 (2022 est.)

Ethnic groups

homogeneous mixture of Sinhalese, Dravidian, Arab, Australasian, and African resulting from historical changes in regional hegemony over marine trade routes

Languages

Dhivehi (official, dialect of Sinhala, script derived from Arabic), English (spoken by most government officials)

Religions

Sunni Muslim (official)

Population growth rate

-0.14% (2022 est.)

Government

Government type

presidential republic

Capital

name: Male

Executive branch

chief of state: President Ibrahim "Ibu" Mohamed SOLIH (since 17 November 2018); Vice President Faisal NASEEM (since 17 November 2018); the president is both chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Ibrahim "Ibu" Mohamed SOLIH (since 17 November 2018); Vice President Faisal NASEEM (since 17 November 2018)

Legislative branch

description: unicameral Parliament or People's Majlis (87 seats - includes 2 seats added by the Elections Commission in late 2018; members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote to serve 5-year terms)

Economy

Economic overview

upper middle-income Indian Ocean island economy; major tourism, fishing, and shipping industries; high public debt; systemic corruption; crippled by COVID-19; ongoing deflation; poverty has tripled since pandemic began

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$7.05 billion (2020 est.)

Real GDP per capita

$13,000 (2020 est.)

Agricultural products

papayas, vegetables, roots/tubers nes, nuts, fruit, other meat, tomatoes, coconuts, bananas, maize

Industries

tourism, fish processing, shipping, boat building, coconut processing, woven mats, rope, handicrafts, coral and sand mining

Exports

$3.72 billion (2019 est.)

Exports - partners

Thailand 24%, United States 13%, China 12%, France 11%, Germany 11%, Italy 5%, United Kingdom 5% (2019)

Exports - commodities

fish products, natural gas, scrap iron, jewelry, liquid pumps (2019)

Imports

$4.09 billion (2019 est.)

Imports - partners

United Arab Emirates 24%, China 16%, Singapore 14%, India 11%, Malaysia 6%, Thailand 5% (2019)

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, fruits, furniture, broadcasting equipment, lumber (2019)


Page last updated: Thursday, May 19, 2022