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Niger



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Introduction

Background: Not until 1993, 33 years after independence from France, did Niger hold its first free and open elections. A 1995 peace accord ended a five-year Tuareg insurgency in the north. Coups in 1996 and 1999 were followed by the creation of a National Reconciliation Council that effected a transition to civilian rule in December 1999.

Geography

Location: Western Africa, southeast of Algeria

Geographic coordinates: 16 00 N, 8 00 E

Map references: Africa

Area
  total: 1.267 million sq km
  land: 1,266,700 sq km
  water: 300 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly less than twice the 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

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: desert; mostly hot, dry, dusty; tropical in extreme south

Terrain: 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 Greboun 1,944 m

Natural resources: uranium, coal, iron ore, tin, phosphates, gold, petroleum

Land use
  arable land: 3%
  permanent crops: 0%
  permanent pastures: 7%
  forests and woodland: 2%
  other: 88% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 660 sq km (1993 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 the Sea

Geography - note: landlocked

People

Population: 10,075,511 (July 2000 est.)

Age structure
  0-14 years: 48% (male 2,461,391; female 2,373,617)
  15-64 years: 50% (male 2,445,369; female 2,563,839)
  65 years and over: 2% (male 121,570; female 109,725) (2000 est.)

Population growth rate: 2.75% (2000 est.)

Birth rate: 51.45 births/1,000 population (2000 est.)

Death rate: 23.17 deaths/1,000 population (2000 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.75 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2000 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: 1.11 male(s)/female
  total population: 1 male(s)/female (2000 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 124.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2000 est.)

Life expectancy at birth
  total population: 41.27 years
  male: 41.43 years
  female: 41.11 years (2000 est.)

Total fertility rate: 7.16 children born/woman (2000 est.)

Nationality
  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

Religions: Muslim 80%, remainder indigenous beliefs and Christians

Languages: French (official), Hausa, Djerma

Literacy
  definition: age 15 and over can read and write
  total population: 13.6%
  male: 20.9%
  female: 6.6% (1995 est.)

Government

Country name
  conventional long form: Republic of Niger
  conventional short form: Niger
  local long form: Republique du Niger
  local short form: Niger

Data code: NG

Government type: republic

Capital: Niamey

Administrative divisions: 7 departments (departements, singular - departement), and 1 capital district* (capitale district); Agadez, Diffa, Dosso, Maradi, Niamey*, Tahoua, Tillaberi, Zinder

Independence: 3 August 1960 (from France)

National holiday: Republic Day, 18 December (1958)

Constitution: the constitution of January 1993 was 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

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch
  chief of state: President Mamadou TANDJA (since 22 December 1999); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government
  head of government: President Mamadou TANDJA (since 22 December 1999); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government; Prime Minister Hama AMADOU (since 31 December 1999) was appointed by the president and shares some executive responsibilities with the president (Note: President Ibrahim BARE was assassinated on 9 April 1999; subsequent elections held under the nine-month provisional government of Major Daouda Mallam WANKE)
  cabinet: 24-member cabinet appointed by President TANDJA
  elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; last held 24 November 1999 (next to be held NA 2004)
  election results: Mamadou TANDJA elected president; percent of vote - Mamadou TANDJA 60%, Mahamadou ISSOUFOU 40%

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 Lahia 4

Judicial branch: State Court or Cour d'Etat; Court of Appeal or Cour d'Appel

Political parties and leaders: Democratic Rally of the People-Jama'a or RDP-Jama'a [Hamid ALGABID]; Democratic and Social Convention-Rahama or CDS-Rahama [Mahamane OUSMANE]; Movement for Development and Progress-Alkwali or MDP-Alkwali [Mai Manga BOUCAR, chairman]; National Movement for a Developing Society-Nassara or MNSD-Nassara [Tandja MAMADOU, chairman]; National Union of Independents for Democratic Renewal or UNIRD [Moutari MOUSSA]; Nigerien Alliance for Democracy and Social Progress-Zaman Lahiya or ANDPS-Zaman Lahiya [Moumouni Adamou DJERMAKOYE]; Nigerien Democratic Front-Mutunci or FDN-Mutunci [Ide OUMAROU]; Nigerien Party for Democracy and Socialism-Tarayya or PNDS-Tarayya [Mahamadou ISSOUFOU]; Nigerien Social Democrat Party-Alheri or PSDN-Alheri [Malam Adji WAZIRI]; Party for People's Dignity-Daraja or PDP-Daraja [Ali TALBA, chairman]; Union of Democratic Patriots and Progressives-Chamoua or UPDP-Chamoua [Professor Andre' SALIFOU, chairman]; Union for Democracy and Social Progress-Amana or UDPS-Amana [Mohamed ABDULLAHI]; Union of Popular Forces for Democracy and Progress-Sawaba or UFPDP-Sawaba [Djibo BAKARY]; Workers' Movement Party-Albarka or PMT-Albarka [Omar Idi ANGO]

International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, CCC, ECA, ECOWAS, Entente, FAO, FZ, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, ITU, MIPONUH, NAM, OAU, OIC, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WADB, WAEMU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation in the US
  chief of mission: Ambassador Joseph DIATTA
  chancery: 2204 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
  telephone: [1] (202) 483-4224 through 4227

Diplomatic representation from the US
  chief of mission: Ambassador Barbro OWENS-KIRKPATRICK
  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

Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of orange (top), white, and green with a small orange disk (representing the sun) centered in the white band; similar to the flag of India, which has a blue spoked wheel centered in the white band

Economy

Economy - overview: Niger is a poor, landlocked Sub-Saharan nation, whose economy centers on subsistence agriculture, animal husbandry, reexport trade, and increasingly less on uranium, its major export since the 1970s. The 50% devaluation of the West African franc in January 1994 boosted exports of livestock, cowpeas, onions, and the products of Niger's small cotton industry. The government relies on bilateral and multilateral aid - which was suspended following the April 1999 coup d'etat - for operating expenses and public investment. Short-term prospects depend on upcoming negotiations with the World Bank and the IMF on debt relief and extended aid.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $9.6 billion (1999 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: 2% (1999 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $1,000 (1999 est.)

GDP - composition by sector
  agriculture: 40%
  industry: 18%
  services: 42% (1998)

Population below poverty line: NA%

Household income or consumption by percentage share
  lowest 10%: 3%
  highest 10%: 29.3% (1992)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 4.8% (1999)

Labor force: 70,000 receive regular wages or salaries

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 90%, industry and commerce 6%, government 4%

Unemployment rate: NA%

Budget
  revenues: $377 million, including $146 million from foreign sources
  expenditures: $377 million, including capital expenditures of $105 million (1999 est.)

Industries: uranium mining, cement, brick, textiles, food processing, chemicals, slaughterhouses

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity - production: 180 million kWh (1998)

Electricity - production by source
  fossil fuel: 100%
  hydro: 0%
  nuclear: 0%
  other: 0% (1998)

Electricity - consumption: 363 million kWh (1998)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (1998)

Electricity - imports: 196 million kWh (1998)

Agriculture - products: cowpeas, cotton, peanuts, millet, sorghum, cassava (tapioca), rice; cattle, sheep, goats, camels, donkeys, horses, poultry

Exports: $269 million (f.o.b., 1997)

Exports - commodities: uranium ore 65%, livestock products, cowpeas, onions (1998 est.)

Exports - partners: US, Greece, Japan, France, Nigeria, Benin

Imports: $295 million (c.i.f., 1997)

Imports - commodities: consumer goods, primary materials, machinery, vehicles and parts, petroleum, cereals

Imports - partners: France, Cote d'Ivoire, US, Benelux, Nigeria

Debt - external: $1.3 billion (1999 est.)

Economic aid - recipient: $222 million (1995)

Currency: 1 Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (CFAF) = 100 centimes

Exchange rates: Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (CFAF) per US$1 - 670 (January 2000), 560.01 (January 1999), 589.95 (1998), 583.67 (1997), 511.55 (1996), 499.15 (1995) (Note: since 1 January 1999, the CFAF is pegged to the euro at a rate of 655.957 CFA francs per euro)

Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications

Telephones - main lines in use: 13,000 (1995)

Telephones - mobile cellular: 0 (1995)

Telephone system: small system of wire, radiotelephone communications, and microwave radio relay links concentrated in southwestern area
  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 5, shortwave 4 (1998)

Radios: 680,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 10 (plus seven low-power repeaters) (1997)

Televisions: 125,000 (1997)

Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (1999)

Transportation

Railways: 0 km

Highways
  total: 10,100 km
  paved: 798 km
  unpaved: 9,302 km (1996 est.)

Waterways: the Niger is navigable 300 km from Niamey to Gaya on the Benin frontier from mid-December through March

Ports and harbors: none

Airports: 27 (1999 est.)

Airports - with paved runways
  total: 9
  2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
  1,524 to 2,437 m: 6
  under 914 m: 1 (1999 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways
  total: 18
  1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
  914 to 1,523 m: 15
  under 914 m: 2 (1999 est.)

Military

Military branches: Army, Air Force, National Gendarmerie, Republican Guard, National Police

Military manpower - military age: 18 years of age

Military manpower - availability
  males age 15-49: 2,137,181 (2000 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service
  males age 15-49: 1,155,054 (2000 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually
  males: 105,884 (2000 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $20 million (FY96)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.1% (FY96)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international: Libya claims about 19,400 sq km in northern Niger; delimitation of international boundaries in the vicinity of Lake Chad, the lack of which led to border incidents in the past, has been completed and awaits ratification by Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria

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Site Version 1.75 - Last updated December 20, 2006

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