Country Summary

2023 population pyramid



The French began to expand onto the Senegalese mainland in the second half of the 19th century and made it a French colony. The French colonies of Senegal and French Sudan were merged in 1959 and granted independence in 1960 as the Mali Federation. The union broke up after only a few months. Senegal joined with The Gambia to form the nominal confederation of Senegambia in 1982. The envisaged integration of the two countries was never implemented, and the union was dissolved in 1989.



total: 196,722 sq km
land: 192,530 sq km
water: 4,192 sq km


tropical; hot, humid; rainy season (May to November) has strong southeast winds; dry season (December to April) dominated by hot, dry, harmattan wind

Natural resources

fish, phosphates, iron ore

People and Society


total: 18,847,519
male: 9,283,314
female: 9,564,205 (2024 est.)

Ethnic groups

Wolof 39.7%, Pulaar 27.5%, Sereer 16%, Mandinka 4.9%, Jola 4.2%, Soninke 2.4%, other 5.4% (includes Europeans and persons of Lebanese descent) (2019 est.)


French (official), Wolof, Pulaar, Jola, Mandinka, Serer, Soninke


Muslim 97.2% (most adhere to one of the four main Sufi brotherhoods), Christian 2.7% (mostly Roman Catholic) (2019 est.)

Population growth rate

2.46% (2024 est.)


Government type

presidential republic


name: Dakar

Executive branch

chief of state: President Bassirou Diomaye FAYE (since 2 April 2024)
head of government: Prime Minister Ousmane SONKO (since 2 April 2024)

Legislative branch

description: unicameral National Assembly or Assemblée Nationale (165 seats; 112 members including 15 representing Senegalese diaspora directly elected by plurality vote in single- and multi-seat constituencies and 53 members directly elected by proportional representation vote in a single nationwide constituency; member term is 5-years)


Economic overview

lower middle-income, services-driven West African economy; key mining, construction, agriculture, and fishing industries; tourism and exports hit hard by COVID-19; large informal economy; developing offshore oil and gas fields; systemic corruption

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$61.727 billion (2022 est.)
$59.265 billion (2021 est.)
$55.627 billion (2020 est.)

Real GDP per capita

$3,600 (2022 est.)
$3,500 (2021 est.)
$3,400 (2020 est.)

Agricultural products

groundnuts, watermelons, rice, cassava, sugarcane, millet, maize, onions, sorghum, milk (2022)


agricultural and fish processing, phosphate mining, fertilizer production, petroleum refining, zircon, and gold mining, construction materials, ship construction and repair


$6.78 billion (2021 est.)
$5.063 billion (2020 est.)
$5.836 billion (2019 est.)

Exports - partners

Mali 18%, India 16%, Switzerland 11%, US 8%, China 4% (2022)

Exports - commodities

gold, phosphoric acid, refined petroleum, fish, precious metal products (2022)


$12.278 billion (2021 est.)
$9.627 billion (2020 est.)
$9.17 billion (2019 est.)

Imports - partners

China 22%, India 8%, France 7%, Belgium 5%, Netherlands 4% (2022)

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, ships, rice, crude petroleum, plastic products (2022)

Exchange rates

Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XOF) per US dollar -
Exchange rates:
623.76 (2022 est.)
554.531 (2021 est.)
575.586 (2020 est.)
585.911 (2019 est.)
555.446 (2018 est.)

Page last updated: Thursday, June 06, 2024