Where is Niger located?

What countries border Niger?

Niger Weather

What is the current weather in Niger?

Niger Facts and Culture

What is Niger famous for?

  • Cultural Attributes: City people are working for rent, electricity, water bills or occasionally major purchases like a t.v. or satellite dish or... More
  • Family: Women spend most of the day taking care of the children and preparing meals. Among the Hausu a woman cannot... More
  • Personal Apperance: Men where boo-boo's (a long roomy dress that comes to the ankles). They also wear pants under the boo-boo. A... More
  • Recreation: Soccer is a favorite sport among Niger children.Wrestling is also popular and most cities have wrestling arenas. Horse races are... More
  • Food and Recipes: Typically Nigerians eat only one meal a day. It is usually Millet patties with sauce in the evening. During the... More
  • Visiting: People do lots of things like talk under shade trees, eat together (men with men, women with women), people bring... More

Niger Facts

What is the capital of Niger?

Capital Niamey
Government Type semi-presidential republic
Currency West Afrtican CFA Franc (XOF)
Total Area 489,189 Square Miles
1,267,000 Square Kilometers
Location Western Africa, southeast of Algeria
Language French (official), Hausa, Djerma
GDP - real growth rate 4.3%
GDP - per capita (PPP) $1,100.00 (USD)

Niger Demographics

What is the population of Niger?

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
Nationality Noun Nigerien(s)
Population 22,772,361
Population Growth Rate 3.32%
Population in Major Urban Areas NIAMEY (capital) 1.297 million
Urban Population 17.800000

Niger Government

What type of government does Niger have?

Executive Branch chief of state: President of the National Council for Safeguarding of the Homeland (CNSP) General Abdourahame TIANI (since 28 July 2023); note - deposed president BAZOUM has been under house arrest since a military coup on 26 July 2023

head of government: Prime Minister Ali Mahaman Lamine ZEINE (since 9 August 2023)

cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the CNSP since the military coup and suspension of the constitution; previously appointed by the elected president

elections/appointments: the CNSP dissolved the constitution as part of the 26 July 2023 military coup and rules by decree; note - prior to the coupe, president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 5-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 27 December 2020 with a runoff held on 21 February 2021 (next election was to be held in 2025); prime minister appointed by the president, authorized by the National Assembly

election results:

2020/2021: Mohamed BAZOUM elected president in second round; percent of vote in first round - Mohamed BAZOUM (PNDS-Tarrayya) 39.3%, Mahamane OUSMANE (MODEN/FA Lumana Africa) 17%, Seini OUMAROU (MNSD-Nassara) 9%, Albade ABOUDA (MPR-Jamhuriya) 7.1%, other 27.6%; percent of vote in second round - Mohamed BAZOUM 55.7%, Mahamane OUSMANE 44.3%

2016: ISSOUFOU Mahamadou reelected president in second round; percent of vote in first round - ISSOUFOU Mahamadou (PNDS-Tarrayya) 48.6%, Hama AMADOU (MODEN/FA Lumana Africa) 17.8%, Seini OUMAROU (MNSD-Nassara) 11.3%, other 22.3%; percent of vote in second round - ISSOUFOU Mahamadou 92%, Hama AMADOU 8%
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal
Citizenship citizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Niger

dual citizenship recognized: yes

residency requirement for naturalization: unknown
National Holiday Republic Day, 18 December (1958); note - commemorates the founding of the Republic of Niger which predated independence from France in 1960
Constitution history: several previous; passed by referendum 31 October 2010, entered into force 25 November 2010

amendments: proposed by the president of the republic or by the National Assembly; consideration of amendments requires at least three-fourths majority vote by the Assembly; passage requires at least four-fifths majority vote; if disapproved, the proposed amendment is dropped or submitted to a referendum; constitutional articles on the form of government, the multiparty system, the separation of state and religion, disqualification of Assembly members, amendment procedures, and amnesty of participants in the 2010 coup cannot be amended; amended 2011, 2017; suspended indefinitely by military coup on 26 July 2023
Independence 3 August 1960 (from France)

Niger Video

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Niger Geography

What environmental issues does Niger have?

Overview The Republic of Niger covers 1,267,000 square kilometers (490,000 square miles). Landlocked, it is bordered by seven countries. Niger is in the heart of the Sahel, the transitional zone between the tropical West African coast and the Sahara Desert. Northern Niger is part of the Sahara, with vast expanses of rocky and sandy wilderness broken only by occasional oases. "Sahel" in Arabic means "border." From north-central Niger to its northeast corner are the Air and Djado Mountains with peaks rising to 1,850 meters (6,000 feet) while partially arable savanna is found south of the 15th parallel.

Niger's capital city, Niamey, sits on the banks of the Niger River, which flows through much of West Africa and is the 12th longest river in the world and the third-longest in Africa.

Climate Niamey's climate varies with distinct seasons. April and May are the hottest months, with noontime temperatures often rising above 48°C (118°F) in the shade. Direct sunlight is intense during this period, and at night temperatures remain above 20°C (80°F). In May, the first rains come to the usually parched landscape and with them the planting of millet and sorghum, the major food crops. Niamey gets on average 55.8 centimeters (22 inches) of rainfall between June and September, normally in short torrential downpours preceded by high winds and dust or sand storms. At this time, the surrounding countryside takes on a verdant hue as the crops and the native grasses begin to grow. The rainy season is followed by a short period of hot, humid weather in October during which temperatures range between 15°C (60°F) and 45°C (112°F).

From November to March, the weather is dry and pleasant. During this season, clear days are interspersed with hazy, overcast skies caused by the "harmattan"--a hot, dry wind carrying dust from the Sahara. Normally, the winds stay at high altitudes, creating slightly overcast skies; the harmattan, however, occasionally causes localized dust storms.

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
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, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea
Terrain predominately desert plains and sand dunes; flat to rolling plains in south; hills in north

Niger Economy

How big is the Niger economy?

Economic Overview 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 approximately 40% of GDP and provides livelihood for over 80% of the population. The UN ranked Niger as the second least developed country in the world in 2016 due to multiple factors such as food insecurity, lack of industry, high population growth, a weak educational sector, and few prospects for work outside of subsistence farming and herding.

Since 2011 public debt has increased due to efforts to scale-up public investment, particularly that related to infrastructure, as well as due to increased security spending. The government relies on foreign donor resources for a large portion of its fiscal budget. The economy in recent years has been hurt by terrorist activity near its uranium mines and by instability in Mali and in the Diffa region of the country; concerns about security have resulted in increased support from regional and international partners on defense. Low uranium prices, demographics, and security expenditures may continue to put pressure on the government’s finances.

The Government of Niger plans to exploit oil, gold, coal, and other mineral resources to sustain future growth. Although Niger has sizable reserves of oil, the prolonged drop in oil prices has reduced profitability. Food insecurity and drought remain perennial problems for Niger, and the government plans to invest more in irrigation. Niger’s three-year $131 million IMF Extended Credit Facility (ECF) agreement for the years 2012-15 was extended until the end of 2016. In February 2017, the IMF approved a new 3-year $134 million ECF. In June 2017, The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA) granted Niger $1 billion over three years for IDA18, a program to boost the country’s development and alleviate poverty. A $437 million Millennium Challenge Account compact for Niger, commencing in FY18, will focus on large-scale irrigation infrastructure development and community-based, climate-resilient agriculture, while promoting sustainable increases in agricultural productivity and sales.

Formal private sector investment needed for economic diversification and growth remains a challenge, given the country’s limited domestic markets, access to credit, and competitiveness. Although President ISSOUFOU is courting foreign investors, including those from the US, as of April 2017, there were no US firms operating in Niger. In November 2017, the National Assembly passed the 2018 Finance Law that was geared towards raising government revenues and moving away from international support.
Industries uranium mining, cement, brick, textiles, food processing, chemicals, slaughterhouses
Currency Name and Code West Afrtican CFA Franc (XOF)
Export Partners France 39.1%, Nigeria 33.3%, Japan 17.3%
Import Partners France 17%, Cote d'Ivoire 14.9%, China 9.9%, Nigeria 7.3%, US 5.3%, Japan 4.6%, India 4.3%

Niger News and Current Events

What current events are happening in Niger?
Source: Google News

Niger Travel Information

What makes Niger a unique country to travel to?

Country Description

Niger is a developing, landlocked African nation whose northern expanse includes the Sahara Desert. Tourist facilities are minimal, particularly outside the capital city, Niamey, and the ancient caravan city of Agadez. Visitors should be aware of the ongoing terrorist threat in Niger and the presence of landmines in the region of Agadez. Conditions of insecurity persist in the northern and western portions of Niger, particularly along the porous border between Niger and Mali, as well as eastern parts of Niger along the border of Nigeria around Diffa. French is the official language; English is not widely used.


The crime rate, primarily for thefts, robberies, and residential break-ins, is high. Foreigners are vulnerable to bribery attempts and extortion by law enforcement authorities. Thefts and petty crimes are common day or night. Armed attacks can be committed at any time of day, generallyby groups of two to four persons, with one assailant confronting the victim with a weapon while the others provide surveillance or a show of force. There has also been an increase of daytime purse snatchings by thieves traveling in pairs on motorcycles. Tourists should not walk alone around the Gaweye Hotel, the National Museum, and on or near the Kennedy Bridge at any time, or the Petit Marche area after dark. These areas are especially prone to muggings – avoid them. Walking at night is not recommended as streetlights are scarce and criminals have the protection of darkness to commit their crimes. Recent criminal incidents in Niger have included carjacking, sexual assaults, home invasions, and muggings. Travelers should keep electronics out of sight, and always keep vehicle doors locked and windows rolled up when stopped at stoplights. Use caution and common sense at all times to avoid thieves and pickpockets.

In many countries around the world, counterfeit and pirated goods are widely available. You will find these products being sold on the streets, local shops, and in market places. Transactions involving such products may be illegal under local law. In addition, carrying them back to the United States may result in forfeitures and/or fines.

Criminal Penalties

While you are traveling in Niger, you are subject to its laws even if you are a U.S. citizen. Foreign laws and legal systems can be vastly different than our own. In some places, you may be taken in for questioning if you don’t have your passport with you. In some places, it is illegal to take pictures of certain buildings. In some places, driving under the influence could land you immediately in jail. These criminal penalties will vary from country to country. There are also some things that might be legal in the country you visit, but still illegal in the United States, and you can be prosecuted under U.S. law if you buy pirated goods. Engaging in sexual conduct with children or using or disseminating child pornography in a foreign country is a crime prosecutable in the United States. If you break local laws in Niger, your U.S. passport won’t help you avoid arrest or prosecution. It’s very important to know what’s legal and what’s not where you are going.

Persons violating Niger's laws, even unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Penalties for possessing, using, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Niger are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines.

Based on the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, bilateral agreements with certain countries, and customary international law, if you are arrested in Niger, you have the option to request that the police, prison officials, or other authorities alert the U.S. Embassy of your arrest, and to have communications from you forwarded to the U.S. Embassy.

Medical Facilities and Health Information

Health facilities are extremely limited in Niamey, and completely inadequate outside the capital. Although physicians are generally well trained, almost all hospitals in Niamey suffer from inadequate facilities, antiquated equipment, and shortages of supplies, particularly medicines. Emergency assistance is also extremely limited. Travelers must carry their own properly labeled supply of prescription drugs and preventative medicines.

Malaria is prevalent in Niger. Plasmodium falciparum malaria, the serious and sometimes fatal strain found in Niger, is resistant to the anti-malarial drug chloroquine. Because travelers to Niger are at high risk for contracting malaria, the CDC advises that travelers should take one of the following anti-malarial drugs: mefloquine (Lariam™), doxycycline, or atovaquone/proguanil (Malarone™). The CDC has determined that a traveler who is on an appropriate anti-malarial drug has a greatly reduced chance of contracting the disease. Other personal protective measures, such as the use of insect repellents, also help to reduce malaria risk. Travelers who become ill with a fever or flu-like illness while traveling in a malaria-risk area, and up to one year after returning home, should seek prompt medical attention and tell the physician their travel history and what anti-malarial drugs they have been taking.

Don’t drink tap water. It is unsafe to drink throughout Niger. Bottled water and beverages are safe, although visitors should be aware that many restaurants and hotels serve tap water. Ice made from tap water is also unsafe to consume.

Safety and Security

The border region with Mali continues to be of specific concern since the Malian government's loss of control over its northern region in early 2012 and the ongoing military intervention that began in early 2013. The border is porous, and there are frequent reports of Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) and other terrorist or rebel groups crossing into Niger. The Government of Niger has increased its security forces in the border area, but the situation remains unstable and travel there is not advised. Conditions of insecurity persist in the northern and western areas of Niger, as well as the southeast border with Nigeria near Diffa. You are warned of the risks of travel to Niger, and urged to exercise extreme caution due to increased kidnapping threats against Westerners. Because of security threats, the U.S. Embassy continues to restrict the travel of U.S. government employees and official visitors in the areas north of Niamey. Travel of U.S. government employees and official visitors to areas south and east of Niamey, including the cities of Maradi, Zinder, and Diffa, requires coordination with the Regional Security Office and final approval by the Ambassador. Travelers should exercise caution in the border area between Niger and Nigeria. Terrorist groups in Nigeria have grown increasingly bold and have conducted kidnappings outside of national borders. These groups have conducted large-scale, military-style attacks on civilian and government targets in northern Nigeria, to include fortified targets such as police stations. A French family of seven was kidnapped while entering a national park in Cameroon in February 2013. The U.S. Embassy continues to evaluate proposed travel and official and personal activities for employees on a case-by-case basis, in consultation with Nigerien security authorities.

As noted in the Department of State’s Worldwide Caution, both the United States and the European Union have designated the Islamic extremist group al-Qaida in the Lands of the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) as a terrorist organization. AQIM has declared its intention to attack Western targets throughout the Sahel (including Mali, Mauritania, and Niger), and has claimed responsibility for the following recent kidnappings/attempted kidnappings and other violent events:

2012 and 2013: Ongoing armed conflict in northern Mali.

December 2012: Assassination attempt on a Malian ex-army officer in Niamey; the assailant had terrorist ties. While the target was not a U.S. citizen, the attack demonstrated that acts of terrorism can occur throughout Niger.

October 2012: Unidentified gunmen kidnapped six people in Dakoro. While none of the hostages were U.S. citizens, the attackers appeared to be seeking to capture Westerners.

January 2011: Two French nationals were kidnapped in Niamey. They were found dead less than 24 hours later following a rescue attempt by French and Nigerien military forces.

September 2010: Seven people, including five French nationals, a citizen of Togo, and a citizen of Madagascar, were kidnapped by AQIM from the northern mining town of Arlit. Four of the French citizens are still being held hostage by AQIM.

April 2010: A French citizen and his Algerian driver were kidnapped. The Algerian was freed. AQIM claimed the French citizen was killed in retaliation for the July attempted rescue operation conducted by Mauritanian and French military forces, but the remains have not been recovered.

For travel in any remote area of the country, the Department of State urges you to use registered guides and to travel with a minimum of two vehicles equipped with global positioning systems (GPS) and satellite phones (if possible). Travelers are advised to avoid restricted military areas and to consult local police authorities regarding your itinerary and security arrangements.

Avoid street demonstrations and maintain security awareness at all times. Large and small street demonstrations occur regularly in Niger, often near government buildings, university campuses, or other gathering places such as public parks. Although demonstrations can occur spontaneously, large student demonstrations typically begin in January – February and continue through May. Be particularly vigilant at these times and avoid travel around the city if you hear reports of demonstrations. During previous student demonstrations, rock-throwing demonstrators have targeted non-governmental organization (NGO) and diplomatic vehicles bearing “IT” or “CD” plates. Many past demonstrations have involved rock throwing and tire burning, especially at key intersections in the city of Niamey.

Due to the spontaneous nature of street demonstrations, it is not possible for the Embassy to notify U.S. citizens each time a demonstration occurs. Maintain security awareness at all times and avoid large public gatherings and street demonstrations. Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational without advance warning. While the Embassy endeavors to inform U.S. citizens of demonstrations through the warden system when possible, local radio and television stations are good sources for information as well.

NOTE TO NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATION WORKERS: Following the murder of a French tourist in the region of Agadez in 2005, the Government of Niger began requiring that NGOs not only be registered and officially recognized, but also that they inform the Nigerien government of each mission they plan to undertake in Niger. To avoid detention and/or expulsion by Nigerien authorities, the U.S. Embassy strongly recommends that NGO workers:

Make sure that your NGO has registered and received official recognition from the Government of Niger. For details on how to do this, please visit the Managing Office of Decentralized Cooperation and Non-Governmental Organizations (Direction De La Cooperation Decentralisée et Des Organisations Non Governementales) in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation (Ministre des Affaires Etrangères et de la Cooperation).

Carry with you a copy of the official recognition (Arrêté) of the right of your NGO to operate in Niger.

If your international NGO sponsor is without a permanent presence in Niger, verify that the NGO group has informed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation at least two weeks prior to the start of a mission in Niger. This notice should be in writing and should include the purpose of the mission, the dates of the mission, where the mission will take place, and the types and license plate numbers of the vehicles involved in the mission. The Ministry of the Interior should be copied on this notice of mission.

If your NGO is a national NGO, i.e., its headquarters is in Niger, verify that the group has informed the Ministry of Planning, Land Management, and Community Development (Ministre du Plan, de l’Aménagement du Territoire et du Developpement Communautaire) at least two weeks prior to the start of a mission in Niger. This notice should be in writing and should include the purpose of the mission, the names of the individuals who will be working for the NGO on the mission, the dates of the mission, where the mission will take place, and the types and license plate numbers of the vehicles involved in the mission. The Ministry of the Interior should be copied on this notice of mission.

NGOs should ask for a receipt of the notification provided to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Ministry of the Interior, and Ministry of Planning, Land Management, and Community Development.

The U.S. Embassy strongly recommends that NGO workers present themselves at the regional governor’s office prior to beginning their mission in a particular region of Niger in addition to the requirements listed above. Again, NGO workers should ask for a receipt of their presentation to the regional governor. It would also be wise to provide the regional governor with the same written notification that was provided to the ministries listed above.

Although the U.S. government places the highest priority on the safe recovery of kidnapped U.S. citizens, it is U.S. policy not to make concessions to kidnappers. Consequently, the type of assistance that the U.S. government can provide to kidnap victims is limited.

Because of safety and security concerns, Peace Corps temporarily suspended its operations in Niger in January 2011.

Traffic Safety and Road Conditions

While in Niger, you may encounter road conditions that differ significantly from those in the United States. The information below concerning Niger is provided for general reference only, and may not be totally accurate in a particular location or circumstance.

Road safety throughout Niger is a concern, and visitors are strongly urged to avoid driving at night outside of major cities. The public transportation system, urban and rural road conditions, and the availability of roadside assistance are all poor. The main causes of accidents are driver carelessness, excessive speed, poorly maintained vehicles, and poor to non-existent road surfaces. Other factors include the hazardous mix of bicycles, mopeds, unwary pedestrians, donkey carts, animals (cattle, goats, camels), and buses on roads that are generally unpaved and poorly lit. Overloaded tractor-trailers, “bush taxis,” and disabled vehicles are additional dangers on rural roads, where speeds are generally higher. Travel outside Niamey and other cities often requires four-wheel-drive vehicles, which creates an additional security risk, since these vehicles, especially Toyota Land Cruisers, are high-theft items. Driving at night is always hazardous and should be avoided. Banditry is a continuing problem in northern and eastern Niger, as well as along the border with Mali. There have been occasional car-jackings and highway robberies throughout the country.

While taxis are available at a fixed fare in Niamey, most are in poor condition, and do not meet basic U.S. road safety standards. Inter-city “bush-taxis” are available at negotiable fares, but these vehicles (minibuses, station wagons, and sedans) are generally older, unsafe models that are overloaded, poorly maintained, and driven by reckless operators seeking to save time and money. A national bus company (SNTV) operates coaches on inter-city routes and, since being reorganized in 2001, has provided reliable service and experienced no major accidents. Air Transport, Rimbo, and Garba Messagé are private bus companies operating in Niger. There is some concern regarding the youth of drivers and the speed with which the private bus companies travel the Nigerien roads. The U.S. Embassy strongly recommends against traveling outside Niamey at night as most roads and vehicles do not meet U.S. safety standards and unlit vehicles, livestock, and pedestrians are common on roads.

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