Mauritania

At A Glance

Indices and Rankings
Gender Gap Ranking1 #119
Gender Inequality Index2 0.605
HDI Ranking3 #159
Political Participation
Women parliamentarians lower/upper houses 22%/14%
Women in Parliament ranking #59
Women at ministerial level (ranking) 23% (#33)
Year women received right to vote/be elected 1961/1961

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Overview
GovernmentMilitary junta
Total population3.4 million
GDP per capita (PPP) $2,000
HDI ranking3#159
Population under age 1540%
Urban population41%
Internet users5%
LanguagesArabic (official), Pulaar, Soninke, Wolof, French, Hassaniya

Indices Education & Employment Political Participation
Sources (January 2013): CIA World Factbook, Inter-Parliamentary Union, Internet World Stats, MDG Info 2010, Quota Project, UNESCO Institute for Statistics, UNICEF ChildInfo , UNICEF State of the World's Children 2011, United Nations Development Project Human Development Reports, World Economic Forum, World Health Organization Global Health Observatory Database. 1.The World Economic Forum's Gender Gap index assesses how well countries divide resources and opportunities amongs male and female populations in four areas: economic participation and opportunity (salaries, participation levels and access to high-skilled employment), educational attainment (access to basic and higher level education), health and survival (life expectancy and sex ratio), and political empowerment (representation in decision-making structures). 2. The UNDP's Gender Inequality Index is designed to reveal the extent to which national human development achievements are eroded by gender inequality. It is a composite measure reflecting inequality in achievements between women and men in three dimensions: reproductive health (maternal mortality ratio and adolescent fertility rate), empowerment (share of parliamentary seats, and secondary and higher education attainment levels) and the labour market (women's participation in the work force). It varies between zero (when women and men fare equally) and one (when men or women fare poorly compared to the other in all dimensions). 3. The UNDP's Human Development Index (HDI) is a summary composite index that measures a country's average achievements in three basic aspects of human development: health, knowledge, and income. It was created to emphasize that people and their capabilities should be the ultimate criteria for assessing the development of a country, not economic growth alone. 4. Vulnerable employment is a Millenium Development Goal (MDG) 1B indicator; vulnerable employments are lower productivity and informal activities such as own-account workers and unpaid family workers. They are therefore more likely to lack benefi ts associated with decent employment, such as adequate social security and recourse to effective mechanisms for social dialogue. Vulnerable employment is often characterized by inadequate earnings, low productivity and substandard working conditions that undermine fundamental labour rights.
Gender Gap Ranking1 #119 Adult literacy rate, females as a % of males 78% Women parliamentarians lower/upper houses 22%/14%
Gender Inequality Index2 0.605 Population with secondary education, female/male ratio 39% Women in Parliament ranking #59
Vulnerable employment for women (men)4 -- Women at ministerial level (ranking) 23% (#33)
Year women received right to vote/be elected 1961/1961
HealthQuotas
Lifetime risk in maternal death, 1 in 44 Quota type Legislated Candidate Quotas
Births per woman 4.5 Constitutional quota in lower house No
Births per 1000 women aged 15-19 88 Electoral quota in lower house Yes
Voluntary political party quotas No

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Our Partner

L'Association des Femmes Chefs de Famille (AFCF) is a non-governmental organization (NGO) with over 5,000 members. The primary mission of AFCF is to promote human rights and to defend the rights of women and children; bring about support for women in precarious situations, particularly those who are the head of the household; create a network of associations that fight for the improvement of living conditions of women heads of households and their children; contribute to the emergence of an active solidarity amongst women of different social classes; and fight for equality amongst men and women. Read more >

In The News

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Reports & Updates
November 10, 2006 | Claiming Equal Citizenship, Human Rights, Mauritania
Mauritania is a party to the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) with reservations on any part of the convention that is contrary to Islamic Sharia law or against the Mauritanian Constitution. AFCF asserts that equal citizenship rights are not against Sharia or the Constitution and should therefore be granted to Mauritanian women.
May 20, 2005 | eNews 12, Leadership, Leading to Choices, 2005 Events, Mauritania
Several participants emphasized the importance of training that integrates an understanding of the culture of human rights and draws on local experiences in defining problems and solutions. Other participants expressed the need for more programming addressing women's economic status, literacy, slavery, and the personal status code. There was a broad agreement that women needed to take on more managerial roles in Mauritania in order to improve the status of women.
S:SSO to Sakai