the chaos that erupted in the months since the military staged a coup d'etat has left the country's twin economic engines - the cotton and gold industries—essentially untouched, in contrast to the vast economic damage caused by coups and conflicts in West African neighbors like Guinea and Ivory Coast.
Africa's top cotton grower and its third-biggest gold miner behind South Africa and Ghana, Mali is expected to produce more cotton and gold in 2012 than it did last year, helping to accelerate economic growth to around 6% and bridge a budget gap left by frozen foreign aid since the coup.
The resilience of the two industries may be small consolation to many ordinary Malians suffering from widespread insecurity and food shortages in one of the worst periods in the country's history.
But it is a relief to an interim government seeking to fund what is likely to be a costly and prolonged recovery, as well as the millions of agriculture workers and handful of international mining investors who depend on them for their livelihoods. . .View Full Article