Mauritania is a former colony of France, and the game was introduced from there. Although it was formerly dominated by expats and French troops, it is now mainly played by Mauritanian natives, and the Mauritanian minority in France. Like many other Maghrebi nations, Mauritanian rugby tended to look to Europe for inspiration, rather than to the rest of Africa.
As for its neighbour, Rugby union in Morocco is fairly well established, and Mauritania takes part in African competitions. However, the lack of infrastructure and finances has been a hindrance in the game's development.