Africa :: Niger

Introduction ::Niger

    Niger became independent from France in 1960 and experienced single-party and military rule until 1991, when Gen. Ali SAIBOU was forced by public pressure to allow multiparty elections, which resulted in a democratic government in 1993. Political infighting brought the government to a standstill and in 1996 led to a coup by Col. Ibrahim BARE. In 1999, BARE was killed in a counter coup by military officers who restored democratic rule and held elections that brought Mamadou TANDJA to power in December of that year. TANDJA was reelected in 2004 and in 2009 spearheaded a constitutional amendment that would allow him to extend his term as president. In February 2010, a military coup deposed TANDJA, immediately suspended the constitution, and dissolved the Cabinet. ISSOUFOU Mahamadou emerged victorious from a crowded field in the election following the coup and was inaugurated in April 2011. Niger is one of the poorest countries in the world with minimal government services and insufficient funds to develop its resource base. The largely agrarian and subsistence-based economy is frequently disrupted by extended droughts common to the Sahel region of Africa. The Nigerien Movement for Justice, a predominately Tuareg ethnic group, emerged in February 2007, and attacked several military targets in Niger's northern region throughout 2007 and 2008. Successful government offensives in 2009 limited the rebels' operational capabilities. Niger is facing increased security concerns on its borders from various external threats including insecurity in Libya and spillover from the rebellion in Mali.

Geography ::Niger

People and Society ::Niger

Government ::Niger

    conventional long form: Republic of Niger
    conventional short form: Niger
    local long form: Republique du Niger
    local short form: Niger
    name: Niamey
    geographic coordinates: 13 31 N, 2 07 E
    time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
    8 regions (regions, singular - region) includes 1 capital district* (communite urbaine); Agadez, Diffa, Dosso, Maradi, Niamey*, Tahoua, Tillaberi, Zinder
    3 August 1960 (from France)
    Republic Day, 18 December (1958); note - commemorates the founding of the Republic of Niger which predated independence from France in 1960
    adopted 31 October 2010
    mixed legal system of civil law (based on French civil law), Islamic law, and customary law
    has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
    18 years of age; universal
    chief of state: President ISSOUFOU Mahamadou (since 7 April 2011)
    head of government: Prime Minister Brigi RAFINI (since 7 April 2011); appointed by the president and shares some executive responsibilities with the president
    cabinet: 26-member Cabinet appointed by the president
    (For more information visit the World Leaders website Opens in New Window)
    elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); candidate must receive a majority of the votes to be elected president; a presidential election to restore civilian rule was held 31 January 2011 with a runoff election between ISSOUFOU Mahamadou and Seini OUMAROU held on 12 March 2011
    election results: ISSOUFOU Mahamadou elected president in a runoff election; percent of vote - ISSOUFOU Mahamadou 58%, Seini OUMAROU 42%
    unicameral National Assembly (113 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
    elections: last held on 31 January 2011
    election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PNDS-Tarrayya 39, MNSD-Nassara 26, MODEN/FA-Lumana 24, ANDP-Zaman Lahiya 8, RDP-Jama'a 7, UDR-Tabbat 6, CDS-Rahama 2, UNI 1
    highest court(s): Constitutional Court (consists of 7 judges); High Court of Justice (consists of 7 members)
    judge selection and term of office: Constitutional Court judges appointed by the president; judges serve 6-year nonrenewable consecutive terms; High Judicial Court members selected from among the legislature and judiciary; members serve 5-year terms
    subordinate courts: Court of Cassation; Council of State; Court of Finances; various specialized tribunals and customary courts
    Democratic and Social Convention-Rahama or CDS-Rahama [Mahamane OUSMANE]
    National Movement for a Developing Society-Nassara or MNSD-Nassara
    Niger Social Democratic Party or PSDN
    Nigerien Alliance for Democracy and Social Progress-Zaman Lahiya or ANDP-Zaman Lahiya [Moumouni DJERMAKOYE]
    Nigerien Democratic Movement for an African Federation or MODEN/FA Lumana
    Nigerien Party for Democracy and Socialism or PNDS-Tarrayya [ISSOUFOU Mahamadou]
    Rally for Democracy and Progress-Jama'a or RDP-Jama'a [Hamid ALGABID]
    Social and Democratic Rally or RSD-Gaskiyya [Cheiffou AMADOU]
    Union for Democracy and the Republic-Tabbat or UDR-Tabbat
    Union of Independent Nigeriens or UNI
    note: the SPLM and SPLM-DC are banned political parties
    The Nigerien Movement for Justice or MNJ, a predominantly Tuareg rebel group
    chief of mission: Ambassador Mamon Sambo SIDIKOU
    chancery: 2204 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
    telephone: [1] (202) 483-4224 through 4227
    FAX: [1] (202)483-3169
    chief of mission: Ambassador Bisa WILLIAMS
    embassy: Rue Des Ambassades, Niamey
    mailing address: B. P. 11201, Niamey; Public Affairs Section (PAS), 2420 Niamey PL, Dulles, VA 20189-2420
    telephone: [227] 20-73-31-69 or [227] 20-72-39-41
    FAX: [227] 20-73-55-60
    three equal horizontal bands of orange (top), white, and green with a small orange disk centered in the white band; the orange band denotes the drier northern regions of the Sahara; white stands for purity and innocence; green symbolizes hope and the fertile and productive southern and western areas, as well as the Niger River; the orange disc represents the sun and the sacrifices made by the people
    note: similar to the flag of India, which has a blue spoked wheel centered in the white band
    name: "La Nigerienne" (The Nigerian)
    lyrics/music: Maurice Albert THIRIET/Robert JACQUET and Nicolas Abel Francois FRIONNET
    note: adopted 1961

Economy ::Niger

    Niger is a landlocked, Sub-Saharan nation, whose economy centers on subsistence crops, livestock, and some of the world's largest uranium deposits. Agriculture contributes about 40% of GDP and provides livelihood for about 90% of the population. Niger also has sizable reserves of oil, and oil production, refining, and exports are expected to grow significantly between 2011 and 2016. Drought, desertification, and strong population growth have undercut the economy. Niger shares a common currency, the CFA franc, and a common central bank, the Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO), with seven other members of the West African Monetary Union. In December 2000, Niger qualified for enhanced debt relief under the International Monetary Fund program for Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) and concluded an agreement with the Fund on a Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility (PRGF). Debt relief provided under the enhanced HIPC initiative significantly reduced Niger's annual debt service obligations, freeing funds for expenditures on basic health care, primary education, HIV/AIDS prevention, rural infrastructure, and other programs geared at poverty reduction. In December 2005, Niger received 100% multilateral debt relief from the IMF, which translated into the forgiveness of approximately US$86 million in debts to the IMF, excluding the remaining assistance under HIPC. The economy was hurt when the international community cut off non-humanitarian aid in response to TANDJA's moves to extend his term as president. Nearly half of the government's budget is derived from foreign donor resources. Future growth may be sustained by exploitation of oil, gold, coal, and other mineral resources. The government, however, has made efforts to secure a new three-year extended credit facility with the IMF following the one that completed in 2011. Oil revenue to the government has fallen well short of its budgeted level. Strikes risk undermining political stability. Food security remains a problem in Niger and is exacerbated by refugees from Mali.
    $13.34 billion (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 145
    $12 billion (2011 est.)
    $11.74 billion (2010 est.)
    note: data are in 2012 US dollars
    $6.575 billion (2012 est.)
    11.2% (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 4
    2.2% (2011 est.)
    10.7% (2010 est.)
    $800 (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 221
    $800 (2011 est.)
    $800 (2010 est.)
    note: data are in 2012 US dollars
    30.6% of GDP (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 23
    26.5% of GDP (2011 est.)
    21.5% of GDP (2010 est.)
    household consumption: 67.9%
    government consumption: 18%
    investment in fixed capital: 56.1%
    investment in inventories: 0%
    exports of goods and services: 24.5%
    imports of goods and services: -66.6%
    (2012 est.)
    agriculture: 39.6%
    industry: 17.1%
    services: 43.2% (2012 est.)
    cowpeas, cotton, peanuts, millet, sorghum, cassava (manioc), rice; cattle, sheep, goats, camels, donkeys, horses, poultry
    uranium mining, cement, brick, soap, textiles, food processing, chemicals, slaughterhouses
    12.6% (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 5
    4.688 million (2007)
    country comparison to the world: 83
    agriculture: 90%
    industry: 6%
    services: 4% (1995)
    63% (1993 est.)
    lowest 10%: 3.7%
    highest 10%: 28.5% (2007)
    34 (2007)
    country comparison to the world: 93
    50.5 (1995)
    revenues: $1.698 billion (2012 est.)
    expenditures: $1.871 billion (2012 est.)
    25.8% of GDP (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 121
    -2.6% of GDP (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 103
    calendar year
    0.5% (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 8
    2.9% (2011 est.)
    4.25% (31 December 2009)
    country comparison to the world: 74
    4.75% (31 December 2008)
    4% (31 December 2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 166
    4.3% (31 December 2011 est.)
    $1.284 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 142
    $939.7 million (31 December 2011 est.)
    $1.201 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 163
    $1.171 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
    $915 million (31 December 2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 161
    $825.3 million (31 December 2011 est.)
    -$1.628 billion (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 130
    -$1.697 billion (2011 est.)
    $1.389 billion (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 149
    $1.233 billion (2011 est.)
    uranium ore, livestock, cowpeas, onions
    Nigeria 41%, US 17%, India 14.1%, Italy 8.5%, China 7.7%, Ghana 5.7% (2012)
    $2.328 billion (2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 159
    $2.217 billion (2011 est.)
    foodstuffs, machinery, vehicles and parts, petroleum, cereals
    France 14.2%, China 11.1%, French Polynesia 9.9%, Nigeria 9.7%, Togo 5.5% (2012)
    $1.543 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
    country comparison to the world: 149
    $1.408 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
    Communaute Financiere Africaine francs (XOF) per US dollar -
    510.53 (2012 est.)
    471.87 (2011 est.)
    495.28 (2010)
    472.19 (2009)
    447.81 (2008)

Energy ::Niger

Communications ::Niger

    85,900 (2011)
    country comparison to the world: 148
    4.743 million (2011)
    country comparison to the world: 110
    general assessment: inadequate; small system of wire, radio telephone communications, and microwave radio relay links concentrated in the southwestern area of Niger
    domestic: combined fixed-line and mobile-cellular teledensity remains only about 30 per 100 persons despite a rapidly increasing cellular subscribership base; domestic satellite system with 3 earth stations and 1 planned
    international: country code - 227; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean) (2010)
    state-run TV station; 3 private TV stations provide a mix of local and foreign programming; state-run radio has only radio station with a national reach; about 30 private radio stations operate locally; as many as 100 community radio stations broadcast; transmissions of multiple international broadcasters are available (2007)
    454 (2012)
    country comparison to the world: 185
    115,900 (2009)
    country comparison to the world: 155

Transportation ::Niger

Military ::Niger

Transnational Issues ::Niger

    Libya claims about 25,000 sq km in a currently dormant dispute in the Tommo region; location of Benin-Niger-Nigeria tripoint is unresolved; only Nigeria and Cameroon have heeded the Lake Chad Commission's admonition to ratify the delimitation treaty that also includes the Chad-Niger and Niger-Nigeria boundaries; the dispute with Burkina Faso was referred to the ICJ in 2010
    refugees (country of origin): 50,000 (Mali) (2013)
    IDPs: undetermined (unknown how many of the 11,000 people displaced by clashes between government forces and the Tuareg militant group, Niger Movement for Justice, in 2007 are still displaced; inter-communal violence) (2012)