Country Summary

2023 population pyramid



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.



total: 298 sq km
land: 298 sq km
water: 0 sq km


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

Natural resources


People and Society


total: 388,858
male: 197,739
female: 191,119 (2024 est.)

Ethnic groups

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


Dhivehi (official, closely related to Sinhala, script derived from Arabic), English (spoken by most government officials)


Sunni Muslim (official)

Population growth rate

-0.2% (2024 est.)


Government type

presidential republic


name: Male

Executive branch

chief of state: President Mohamed MUIZZU (since 17 November 2023); Vice President-elect Hussain Mohamed LATHEEF (since 30 September 2023); the president is both chief of state and head of government
head of government: President Mohamed MUIZZU (since 17 November 2023); Vice President-elect Hussain Mohamed LATHEEF (since 30 September 2023)

Legislative branch

description: unicameral Parliament or People's Majlis (93 seats; members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote to serve 5-year terms)


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)

$11.142 billion (2022 est.)
$9.781 billion (2021 est.)
$7.104 billion (2020 est.)

Real GDP per capita

$21,300 (2022 est.)
$18,800 (2021 est.)
$13,800 (2020 est.)

Agricultural products

fruits, vegetables, nuts, other meats, tomatoes, bananas, maize, pulses, coconuts, papayas (2022)


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


$5.096 billion (2022 est.)
$3.985 billion (2021 est.)
$1.787 billion (2020 est.)

Exports - partners

India 71%, Thailand 12%, Germany 3%, Oman 2%, UK 2% (2022)

Exports - commodities

aircraft, fish, natural gas, scrap iron, refined petroleum (2022)


$4.904 billion (2022 est.)
$3.484 billion (2021 est.)
$2.449 billion (2020 est.)

Imports - partners

India 16%, China 16%, UAE 10%, Oman 9%, Malaysia 6% (2022)

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, ships, aircraft, plastic products, broadcasting equipment (2022)

Exchange rates

rufiyaa (MVR) per US dollar -
Exchange rates:
15.387 (2022 est.)
15.373 (2021 est.)
15.381 (2020 est.)
15.382 (2019 est.)
15.391 (2018 est.)

Page last updated: Wednesday, May 22, 2024