Madagascar. According to Countryaah website, national day of Madagascar is every June 26. Political chaos paralyzed Madagascar more than half the year. Company manager Marc Ravalomanana claimed he won the presidential election in December 2001 and demanded to be installed as head of state without a crucial second round of elections. Daily demonstrations in the capital Antananarivo and extensive strikes in support of Ravalomanana halted trade and administration. Already in February, the strikes were considered to cost Madagascar over SEK 100 million. a day. The entire debt relief granted by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund was wasted.
In late February, Ravalomanana proclaimed president and appointed his own government. While the army showed signs of failing in loyalty to the official government, five of the country’s six provincial governors declared the port city of Toamasina a new capital. Supporters of incumbent President Didier Ratsiraka blocked roads from the coast to Antananarivo, leading to severe commodity and fuel shortages in the capital. Demonstrations around the country became increasingly violent and began to demand the deaths. Struggles occurred in several directions between army factions.
The Supreme Court in April dissolved the Constitutional Court, which consisted entirely of judges loyal to Ratsiraka. After a new count of votes, the new Constitutional Court declared Ravalomanana as the winner with just over 51% of the vote, after which he was installed as president a second time. However, the conflict continued. Several provinces declared themselves independent states in protest against Ravalomanana, and it was not until July that the new president had reasonable control of the country after the entire army moved to his side and defeated the resistance. Most Western countries now recognized the new regime, while the African Union has so far not granted Madagascar membership. In total, the conflict demanded some 70 lives.
At a Paris conference in July, the outside world pledged $ 2.3 billion in reconstruction assistance over four years, of which just over half would be disbursed as emergency aid in 2002. However, as a condition of long-term support, aid countries required guarantees of Ravalomanana’s ability to restore stability in the country. Therefore, a new election was held in December, which resulted in a grand victory for the party Tiako´i Madagasikara (TIM; “I love Madagascar”), quickly built up by the president’s staff. TIM received 102 of Parliament’s 160 seats and related parties another 30 seats.
Madagascar Country Overview
Finns need a visa and a valid passport for Madagascar. A visa will be obtained upon arrival in the country. Currently, the price information for visas is as follows:
– 35 € / person (when the travel time is up to 30 days)
– 40 € / person (when the travel time is 31 – 60 days)
– 50 € / person (when the travel time is 61 – 90 days )
The passport must be valid for at least 6 months after leaving the country and must contain at least 1 blank page for a visa. Separate photographs are not required for the visa but you must present your return flight ticket.
Note. Visa policies and rates are subject to change without notice depending on local authorities.
- According to ABBREVIATIONFINDER.ORG, MDG stands for Madagascar.
Every person participating in the trip must have a valid travel insurance that covers medical expenses in the event of illness or other similar need. Please check the validity of your own insurance and the terms and conditions of the insurance cancellation cover.
Please pay attention to the special nature of your trip and check the coverage of the insurance in that respect as well. In many locations, the insurance must also be valid when moving at an altitude of more than 3,000 meters, in which case it also covers mountain sickness.
Many hiking or diving trips require more extensive insurance, which covers, for example, diving or moving on a glacier. Please check the contents of your insurance with your insurance company.
Currently maastapoistumismaksua will not be charged but changes are possible due to the paikaillisista authorities.
Compulsory vaccinations are not required for Madagascar.
As an exception, when yellow fever is reached from an area of occurrence (eg Kenya and Uganda), it should be possible to present an international vaccination card with the yellow fever vaccination mark as proof of yellow fever vaccination.
If you travel to Madagascar from a destination that does not belong to the yellow fever area, a vaccination certificate is not required. However, there may be discrepancies in the practices of border guards and, for example, there may be unexpected changes in flight routes, which may also affect vaccination requirements. Due to such situations, we recommend that you have a valid vaccination certificate with you on the trip. We will not be held responsible if access is denied due to a missing vaccination certificate.
Check that your basic vaccinations according to your national vaccination schedule are valid, hepatitis A and B vaccinations are also recommended. Madagascar is a malaria region in many ways, so antimalarial medication is recommended. Always check vaccination requirements at your health center or tourist clinic vaccination advice.
The currency of
Madagascar is the ariary (MGA).
Euros or dollars should be exchanged at the capital or at the airport upon arrival in the country. There are vending machines in the largest cities where you can withdraw money. However, it is worth noting that there are interruptions in the use of vending machines, so it is also recommended to bring cash. Visa / MasterCard cards are available in major cities and some hotels, other credit cards are not generally accepted.
Time difference to Finland
Madagascar’s time difference to Finland is +1 hour in winter. There is no time difference in summer.
The current in Madagascar is 220 V. The sockets mainly correspond to Finnish sockets and no adapter is generally needed.
Power outages are common.
Check with your operator for the coverage of your mobile phone. Madagascar area code is +261.
Food and drink
Malagasy people eat a lot of rice. It is such an important part of food culture that, for example, the verb eat also means eating rice into Malagasy. Rice is usually served with fish, meat or cooked vegetables. Malagasy food is not very spicy. In many cases, fresh raw materials are processed daily from the market. Markets sell e.g. dried fish, zepua, eels, chickens and ducks. Traditional local food, for example, is Romazava, which contains thick broth with zebu and chicken as well as vegetables. Also available e.g. kanacurry, fish cakes and romazava. Water and beverages must be industrially bottled. It is also a good idea to rinse fruits and vegetables with bottled water. Heated or tablet-purified water can be drunk. Reheated foods should be avoided.
Madagascar’s climate comprises two seasons, dry and rainy. However, the climate varies greatly depending on the geographical area. The dry season lasts from April to November and the hot rainy season from November to March. In general, coastal areas are warmer than inland.
Fauna and flora
Nature is unique due to its isolation. More than 80% of Madagascar’s animals and plants are not found elsewhere. Only Madagascar has 5% of the world’s species.