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Introduction Niger
Not until 1993, 33 years after independence from France, did Niger hold it's first free and open elections. A 1995 peace accord ended a five-year Tuareg insurgency in north. Coups in 1996 and 1999 were followed by creation of a National Reconciliation Council that effected a transition to civilian rule by December 1999.
Geography Niger
Western Africa, southeast of Algeria
Geographic coordinates:
16 00 N, 8 00 E
Map references:
total: 1.267 million sq km
water: 300 sq km
land: 1,266,700 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly less than twice size of Texas
Land boundaries:
total: 5,697 km
border countries: Algeria 956 km, Benin 266 km, Burkina Faso 628 km, Chad 1,175 km, Libya 354 km, Mali 821 km, Nigeria 1,497 km
0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims:
none (landlocked)
desert; mostly hot, dry, dusty; tropical in extreme south
predominately desert plains and sand dunes; flat to rolling plains in south; hills in north
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Niger River 200 m
highest point: Mont Bagzane 2,022 m
Natural resources:
uranium, coal, iron ore, tin, phosphates, gold, petroleum
Land use:
arable land: 3.94%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 96.06% (1998 est.)
Irrigated land:
660 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
recurring droughts
Environment - current issues:
overgrazing; soil erosion; deforestation; desertification; wildlife populations (such as elephant, hippopotamus, giraffe, and lion) threatened because of poaching and habitat destruction
Environment - international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Law of Sea
Geography - note:
landlocked; one of hottest countries in world: northern four-fifths is desert, southern one-fifth is savanna, suitable for livestock and limited agriculture
People Niger
Total Population:
11,058,590 (July 2003 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 47.6% (male 2,686,169; female 2,581,785)
15-64 years: 50.2% (male 2,710,554; female 2,842,319)
65 years and over: 2.2% (male 125,505; female 112,258) (2003 est.)
Median age:
total: 16.1 years
male: 15.6 years
female: 16.6 years (2002)
Population growth rate:
2.71% (2003 est.)
Birth rate:
49.54 births/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Death rate:
21.71 deaths/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Net migration rate:
-0.69 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2003 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 1.12 male(s)/female
Population: 1 male(s)/female (2003 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: 123.64 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 119.16 deaths/1,000 live births (2003 est.)
male: 127.99 deaths/1,000 live births
Life Expectancy:
Population: 42.21 years
male: 42.29 years
female: 42.12 years (2003 est.)
Total fertility rate:
6.91 children born/woman (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
4% (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
6,000 (2001 est.)
noun: Nigerien(s)
adjective: Nigerien
Ethnic groups:
Hausa 56%, Djerma 22%, Fula 8.5%, Tuareg 8%, Beri Beri (Kanouri) 4.3%, Arab, Toubou, and Gourmantche 1.2%, about 1,200 French expatriates
Muslim 80%, remainder indigenous beliefs and Christian
French (official), Hausa, Djerma
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Population: 17.6%
male: 25.8%
female: 9.7% (2003 est.)
Government Niger
Country name:
conventional long form: Republic of Niger
conventional short form: Niger
local short form: Niger
local long form: Republique du Niger
Government type:
Administrative divisions:
7 departments (departements, singular - departement) and 1 capital district* (capitale district); Agadez, Diffa, Dosso, Maradi, Niamey*, Tahoua, Tillaberi, Zinder
3 August 1960 (from France)
National holiday:
Republic Day, 18 December (1958)
constitution of January 1993 previously revised by national referendum on 12 May 1996 and again by referendum on 18 July 1999
Legal system:
based on French civil law system and customary law; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: President TANDJA Mamadou (since 22 December 1999); note - president is both chief of state and head of government
head of government: President TANDJA Mamadou (since 22 December 1999); note - president is both chief of state and head of government; Prime Minister Hama AMADOU (since 31 December 1999) previously appointed by president and shares some executive responsibilities with president
cabinet: 23-member Cabinet appointed by president
elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; last held 24 November 1999 (next to be held NA 2004); prime minister appointed by president
election results: TANDJA Mamadou elected president; percent of vote - TANDJA Mamadou 59.9%, Mahamadou ISSOUFOU 40.1%
Legislative branch:
unicameral National Assembly (83 seats, members elected by popular vote for five-year terms)
elections: last held 24 November 1999 (next to be held NA 2004)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - MNSD-Nassara 38, CDS-Rahama 17, PNDS-Tarayya 16, RDP-Jama'a 8, ANDPS-Zaman Lahiya 4
Judicial branch:
State Court or Cour d'Etat; Court of Appeal or Cour d'Appel
Political parties and leaders:
Democratic Rally of People-Jama'a or RDP-Jama'a [Hamid ALGABID]; Democratic and Social Convention-Rahama or CDS-Rahama [Mahamane OUSMANE]; National Movement for a Developing Society-Nassara or MNSD-Nassara [Mamadou TANDJA, chairman]; Nigerien Alliance for Democracy and Social Progress-Zaman Lahiya or ANDPS-Zaman Lahiya [Moumouni Adamou DJERMAKOYE]; Nigerien Party for Democracy and Socialism-Tarayya or PNDS-Tarayya [Mahamadou ISSOUFOU]; Union of Democratic Patriots and Progressives-Chamoua or UPDP-Chamoua [Professor Andre' SALIFOU, chairman]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
International organization participation:
Diplomatic representation in US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Joseph DIATTA
FAX: [1] (202)483-3169
telephone: [1] (202) 483-4224 through 4227
chancery: 2204 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
Diplomatic representation from US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Gail Dennise Thomas MATHIEU
embassy: Rue Des Ambassades, Niamey
mailing address: B. P. 11201, Niamey
telephone: [227] 72 26 61 through 72 26 64
FAX: [227] 73 31 67, 72-31-46
Flag description:
three equal horizontal bands of orange (top), white, and green with a limited orange disk (representing sun) centered in white band; similar to flag of India, which has a blue spoked wheel centered in white band
Economy Niger
Economy - overview:
Niger is a poor, landlocked Sub-Saharan nation, whose economy centers on subsistence agriculture, animal husbandry, and reexport trade, and increasingly less on uranium, because of declining world demand. 50% devaluation of West African franc in January 1994 boosted exports of livestock, cowpeas, onions, and products of Niger's limited cotton industry. government relies on bilateral and multilateral aid - which previously suspended following April 1999 coup d'etat - for operating expenses and public investment. In 2000-01, World Bank approved a structural adjustment loan of $105 million to help support fiscal reforms. However, reforms could prove difficult given government's bleak financial situation. IMF approved a $73 million poverty reduction and growth facility for Niger in 2000 and announced $115 million in debt relief under Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) initiative. Further disbursements of aid occurred in 2002. Future growth may be sustained by exploitation of oil, gold, coal, and other mineral resources.
buying power parity - $8.713 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
2.9% (2002 est.)
GDP - per capita:
buying power parity - $800 (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 39%
industry: 17%
services: 44% (2001)
Population below poverty line:
63% (1993 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 0.8%
highest 10%: 35.4% (1995)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
50.5 (1995)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
3% (2002 est.)
Labor force:
70,000 receive regular wages or salaries
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture 90%, industry and commerce 6%, government 4%
Unemployment rate:
revenues: $320 million - includes $134 million from foreign sources
expenditures: $320 million, includes capital expenditures of $178 million (2002 est.)
uranium mining, cement, brick, textiles, food processing, chemicals, slaughterhouses
Industrial production growth rate:
Electricity - production:
242 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 100%
hydro: 0%
other: 0% (2001)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption:
325.1 million kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports:
100 million kWh (2001)
Oil - production:
0 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - consumption:
5,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - exports:
NA (2001)
Oil - imports:
NA (2001)
Agriculture - products:
cowpeas, cotton, peanuts, millet, sorghum, cassava (tapioca), rice; cattle, sheep, goats, camels, donkeys, horses, poultry
$293 million f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Exports - commodities:
uranium ore, livestock, cowpeas, onions
Exports - partners:
France 39%, Nigeria 33.2%, Japan 17.1% (2002)
$368 million f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Imports - commodities:
foodstuffs, machinery, vehicles and parts, petroleum, cereals
Imports - partners:
France 16.8%, Cote d'Ivoire 14.9%, China 9.8%, Nigeria 7.4%, US 5.2%, Japan 4.6%, India 4.4% (2002)
Debt - external:
$1.6 billion (1999 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
$341 million (1997)
Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XOF); note - responsible authority is Central Bank of West African States
Currency code:
Exchange rates:
Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XOF) per US dollar - 696.99 (2002), 733.04 (2001), 711.98 (2000), 615.7 (1999), 589.95 (1998)
Fiscal year:
calendar year
Communications Niger
Telephones - main lines in use:
20,000 (2001)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
6,700 (2002)
Telephone system:
general assessment: limited system of wire, radio telephone communications, and microwave radio relay links concentrated in southwestern area of Niger
domestic: wire, radiotelephone communications, and microwave radio relay; domestic satellite system with 3 earth stations and 1 planned
international: satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean)
Radio broadcast stations:
AM 5, FM 6, shortwave 4 (2001)
680,000 (1997)
Television broadcast stations:
3 (plus seven low-power repeaters) (2002)
125,000 (1997)
Internet country code:
Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
1 (2002)
Internet users:
12,000 (2002)
Transportation Niger
0 km
total: 10,100 km
paved: 798 km
unpaved: 9,302 km (1999 est.)
300 km
note: Niger River is navigable from Niamey to Gaya on Benin frontier from mid-December through March
Ports and harbors:
27 (2002)
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 9
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
1,524 to 2,437 m: 6
under 914 m: 1 (2002)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 18
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 14
under 914 m: 2 (2002)
Military Niger
Military branches:
Army, Air Force, Gendarmerie, National Intervention and Security Force
Military manpower - military age:
18 years of age (2003 est.)
Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 2,379,485 (2003 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service:
males age 15-49: 1,288,396 (2003 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
males: 119,367 (2003 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
$20.54 million (FY02)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
1.1% (FY02)
Transnational Issues Niger
Disputes - international:
Libya claims about 25,000 sq km in a currently dormant dispute; much of Benin-Niger boundary, includes tripoint with Nigeria, remains undemarcated but states accept 2001 arbitration over disputed Niger River islands; Lake Chad Commission continues to urge signatories Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria to ratify delimitation treaty over lake region, which remains site of armed clashes among local populations and militias