The armed conflict is making development more difficult
The armed conflict in the north of Mali at the end of 2012 and beginning of 2013 hit the people there hard. The area is now largely secured by the army and French troops. The elections in August 2013 brought a democratically legitimate government to office, but the military and political situation is still unstable. The living conditions of the people there will need to improve quickly if the country is to ensure peace. Agriculture in Mali offers considerable potential, but this has yet to be tapped. More than 40 % of the population is living in poverty and nearly a third is chronically malnourished. Food security therefore remains one of the country's biggest challenges even in spite of its successes.