Geography

Madagascar is the world’s 4th largest island, located in the Indian Ocean off the

coast of Mozambique.

Peoples

98% are Malagasy, which is a mix of African, Indonesian and Arab origin. The

literacy rate is only 70% and in decline. The official languages are Malagasy, French

and English (the latter is rarely used). There are 20 languages in Madagascar.

Three have the entire Bible, one has the New Testament and four have portions

of scripture.

Economy

Average annual income is $468 per person, per year, which is 1% of the USA

average.

Politics

The people of the highlands gained control of the whole island in the 19th

century, a fact still resented by the lowlanders today. Annexed by France in 1896

and independent in 1960. There was a failed attempt at Marxism in 1972. Multi-

party elections began in 1993. Corruption has long been a problem.

Religion

There is officially religious freedom. Folk religion is pervasive. 38% adhere to folk

religion, 32% are Protestant, 23% are Catholic and 7% are Muslim.

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