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Republic of Madagascar
Repoblikan'i Madagasikara
République de Madagascar
Flag of Madagascar
Location of Madagascar
Location of Madagascar
and largest city
Official languagesMalagasy, French
GovernmentSemi-presidential republic
• President
Hery Rajaonarimampianina
Roger Kolo
from France
• Date
June 26, 1960
• Total
587,041 km2 (226,658 sq mi) (47th)
• Water (%)
• 2011[3] estimate
21,926,221 (53rd)
• 1993 census
• Density
35.2/km2 (91.2/sq mi) (174th)
GDP (PPP)2011 estimate
• Total
$20.610 billion
• Per capita
GDP (nominal)2010[4] estimate
• Total
$8.59 billion
• Per capita
Gini (2001)47.5
HDI (2010)Increase 0.435
low · 135th
CurrencyMalagasy ariary (MGA)
Time zoneUTC+3 (EAT)
• Summer (DST)
UTC+3 (not observed[5])
Driving sideright
Calling code+261[5]
ISO 3166 codeMG

Madagascar is a large island nation in the Indian Ocean, off of the east coast of Africa. Twenty-two million people live there; its capital is Antananarivo. It is the world's fourth largest island.[6]

The official languages are Malagasy and French.

Geologists think that about two million years ago, Madagascar was a part of a big landmass that included what is now the continent of Africa, but it broke off. Madagascar would later break off of the Indian subcontinent.[7]


Madagascar is home to many species that were not known about until around 1679 when Dutch explorers went there. They do not even exist elsewhere in Africa. They only exist in Madagascar. In fact, most of the mammals living in Madagascar do not live anywhere else in the world.[8] However, many of the species in Madagascar are in danger because many of the forests have been cut down.[9] A big reason that forests have been cut down is so that land can be used to grow crops such as coffee, which is one of the most important crops that is grown in Madagascar.


Agriculture is a big part of the economy in Madagascar, including the growing of coffee and vanilla. Madagascar sells more vanilla than any other country in the world.[10] Madagascar also makes money from tourism.[11]


Map of the Regions of Madagascar and former provinces of Madagascar

In 2004 Madagascar was divided into 22 regions. It used to be divided into 6 provinces.[12]

Regions and former provinces[13]
New regions Former provinces Population 2004 estimate
Diana (1), Sava (2) Antsiranana 1,291,100
Itasy (3), Analamanga (4), Vakinankaratra (5), Bongolava (6)
Sofia (7), Boeny (8), Betsiboka (9), Melaky (10) Mahajanga 1,896,000
Alaotra Mangoro (11), Atsinanana (12), Analanjirofo (13) Toamasina 2,855,600
Amoron'i Mania (14), Haute-Matsiatra (15), Vatovavy-Fitovinany (16), Atsimo-Atsinanana (17), Ihorombe (18)
Fianarantsoa 3,730,200
Menabe (19), Atsimo-Andrefana (20), Androy (21), Anosy (22) Toliara 2,430,100


People have probably lived in Madagascar for at least 2000 years.[14]

France took over the city of Antananarivo in 1895, and added Madagascar as a colony two years later.[15] Madagascar became independent from France, which meant it became its own country, on 26 June, 1960. On March 17, 2009, President Marc Ravalomanana quit because of pressure from the military. Andry Raejolina became the next president.[16]

Related pages


  1. Le Comité Consultatif Constitutionnel (October 1, 2010). "Projet de Constitution de la Quatrième République de Madagascar". Madagascar Tribune. Archived from the original on August 24, 2011. Retrieved August 24, 2011. (French)
  2. "Malagasy" is the correct form in English; Embassy of Madagascar, Washington D.C. "Madagascan" is used only for the island, not its people National Geographic Style Manual
  3. Central Intelligence Agency (2011). "Madagascar". The World Factbook. Retrieved August 24, 2011.
  4. The World Bank Group (December 2010). "Madagascar: Data Profile". World Development Indicators Database. The World Bank. Archived from the original on August 24, 2011. Retrieved August 24, 2011.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Bradt (2011), p. 2
  6. "CIA - The World Factbook -- Madagascar". Central Intelligence Agency. Retrieved May 6, 2010.
  7. "Giant palm tree puzzles botanists". Retrieved May 7, 2010.
  8. "Dark history of Madagascar - Times Online". Retrieved May 6, 2010.
  9. "Deforestation In Madagascar". Retrieved May 6, 2010.
  10. Saholiarisoa, Sanja. "Reuters AlertNet - Cyclones, politics to hurt Madagascar vanilla". Retrieved May 6, 2010.
  11. "Economy of Madagascar". Retrieved May 6, 2010.
  12. Deschamps (1965), pp. 268, 274.
  13. Ralison, Eliane; Goossens, Frans (January 2006), "Madagascar: profile des marches pour les evaluations d'urgence de la securite alimentaire", in World Food Programme (ed.), Strengthening Emergency Needs Assessment Capacity (in French), Rome, Italy: Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, p. 3, archived from the original (PDF) on January 14, 2012, retrieved January 14, 2012 Missing or empty |title= (help)CS1 maint: Unrecognized language (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  14. "Dark history of Madagascar - Times Online". Retrieved May 6, 2010.
  15. "History of Madagascar - Lonely Planet Travel Information". Retrieved May 6, 2010.
  16. "Madagascar president Marc Ravalomanana resigns". Retrieved May 6, 2010.

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