Mali - eCommerceMali - eCommerce
Most products are sold through brick-and-mortar retail. eCommerce has yet to be developed in Mali as Internet penetration remains low. The UNCTAD eCommerce Index ranking for 2016 shows that Mali is the 131th country out of 137 in terms of eCommerce. This ranking shows that only seven percent of Malians use Internet and one percent the credit card. The Government of Mali created a Ministry of Digital Economy and Communication, and a Regulatory Authority for Telecommunication and Postal Services. An authoriy in charge of protecting personal data has been also created. Despite high-speed internet penetration in major cities, eCommerce remains marginal in Mali.
Current Market Trends
eCommerce represents a marginal part of total commerce in Mali.
Domestic eCommerce (B2C)
Domestic eCommerce between business and consumer is insignificant in Mali.
Cross-border eCommerce is not significant in Malian total international commerce. Only a limited number of consumers have recourse to major international eCommerce companies.
B2B eCommerce is not common in Mali due to the perceived risks involved. Malian businesspeople usually stress the lack of confidence and funding when importing large quantity of goods from the international market.
eCommerce services are generally limited to the initial matching of partners. Payment is generally made in cash, including for large sums.
eCommerce Intellectual Property Rights
eCommerce intellectual property rights are managed by the Agency for Information and Communication Technologies (AGETIC). AGETIC is also in charge of assigning domain names. AGETIC is linked to Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). Mali is a member of the African Inetllectual Property Rights Organization through the Centre Malien de Promotion de la Propriete Industrielle (CEMAPI ) that deals with industrial property rights in Mali.
While mobile banking allows more Malians to access banking services, online payment is not well developed in Mali, which hampers the development of eCommerce.
Mobile eCommerce is more frequent in the services sector, mainly for the payment of electricity and water bills. Mobile payment is contributing to the development of eCommerce by avoiding the risks associated with online payment.
Digital marketing is not widely used by Malian companies. A few companies take advantage of well-known websites to reach out to consumers.
Major Buying Holidays
In addition to popular Christian holidays and New Year’s Day, Muslim holidays Eid al-Adha, Eid al-Fit’r, and Mawloud are the main buying holidays in Mali.
Social media are more and more used for advertisements. The most important social media are Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Viber, Imo, and WhatsApp.Prepared by our U.S. Embassies abroad. With its network of 108 offices across the United States and in more than 75 countries, the U.S. Commercial Service of the U.S. Department of Commerce utilizes its global presence and international marketing expertise to help U.S. companies sell their products and services worldwide. Locate the U.S. Commercial Service trade specialist in the U.S. nearest you by visiting http://export.gov/usoffices.
Mali eCommerce Industry Trade Development and Promotion eCommerce