Imports$5.159 billion (2011 est.)
Exports$2.645 billion (2011 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)6.5% (2011 est.)
Unemployment rate7.8% (2011 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$15,100 (2011 est.)
National product real growth rate3.6% (2010 est.)
Internet users290,000 (2009)
Telephones - mobile cellular1.191 million (2009)
Population growth rate0.705% (2012 est.)
Population1,313,095 (July 2012 est.)
Although known to Arab and Malay sailors as early as the 10th century, Mauritius was first explored by the Portuguese in the 16th century and subsequently settled by the Dutch - who named it in honor of Prince Maurits van NASSAU - in the 17th century.
The French assumed control in 1715, developing the island into an important naval base overseeing Indian Ocean trade, and establishing a plantation economy of sugar cane.
The British captured the island in 1810, during the Napoleonic Wars....
Since independence in 1968, Mauritius has developed from a low-income, agriculturally based economy to a middle-income diversified economy with growing industrial, financial, and tourist sectors.
For most of the period, annual growth has been in the order of 5% to 6%.
This remarkable achievement has been reflected in more equitable income distribution, increased life expectancy, lowered infant mortality, and a much-improved infrastructure....
The Economist Intelligence Unit
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