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Flag of Nigeria
Map of Nigeria
Introduction Nigeria
Following nearly 16 years of military rule, a new constitution was adopted in 1999, and a peaceful transition to civilian government was completed. The president faces the daunting task of rebuilding a petroleum-based economy, whose revenues have been squandered through corruption and mismanagement, and institutionalizing democracy. In addition, the OBASANJO administration must defuse longstanding ethnic and religious tensions, if it is to build a sound foundation for economic growth and political stability.
Geography Nigeria
Western Africa, bordering the Gulf of Guinea, between Benin and Cameroon
Geographic coordinates:
10 00 N, 8 00 E
Map references:
total: 923,768 sq km
water: 13,000 sq km
land: 910,768 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly more than twice the size of California
Land boundaries:
total: 4,047 km
border countries: Benin 773 km, Cameroon 1,690 km, Chad 87 km, Niger 1,497 km
853 km
Maritime claims:
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
territorial sea: 12 NM
varies; equatorial in south, tropical in center, arid in north
southern lowlands merge into central hills and plateaus; mountains in southeast, plains in north
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Chappal Waddi 2,419 m
Natural resources:
natural gas, petroleum, tin, columbite, iron ore, coal, limestone, lead, zinc, arable land
Land use:
arable land: 30.96%
permanent crops: 2.79%
other: 66.25% (1998 est.)
Irrigated land:
2,330 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
periodic droughts; flooding
Environment - current issues:
soil degradation; rapid deforestation; urban air and water pollution; desertification; oil pollution - water, air, and soil; has suffered serious damage from oil spills; loss of arable land; rapid urbanization
Environment - international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note:
the Niger enters the country in the northwest and flows southward through tropical rain forests and swamps to its delta in the Gulf of Guinea
People Nigeria
note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2002 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 43.6% (male 28,503,211; female 28,156,976)
15-64 years: 53.6% (male 35,418,119; female 34,179,802)
65 years and over: 2.8% (male 1,832,682; female 1,844,121) (2002 est.)
Population growth rate:
2.54% (2002 est.)
Birth rate:
39.22 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Death rate:
14.1 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Net migration rate:
0.27 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.99 male(s)/female
total population: 1.03 male(s)/female (2002 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
72.49 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 50.59 years
female: 50.6 years (2002 est.)
male: 50.58 years
Total fertility rate:
5.49 children born/woman (2002 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
5.06% (1999 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
2.7 million (1999 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
250,000 (1999 est.)
noun: Nigerian(s)
adjective: Nigerian
Ethnic groups:
Nigeria, which is Africa's most populous country, is composed of more than 250 ethnic groups; the following are the most populous and politically influential: Hausa and Fulani 29%, Yoruba 21%, Igbo (Ibo) 18%, Ijaw 10%, Kanuri 4%, Ibibio 3.5%, Tiv 2.5%
Muslim 50%, Christian 40%, indigenous beliefs 10%
English (official), Hausa, Yoruba, Igbo (Ibo), Fulani
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 57.1%
male: 67.3%
female: 47.3% (1995 est.)
Government Nigeria
Country name:
conventional long form: Federal Republic of Nigeria
conventional short form: Nigeria
Government type:
republic transitioning from military to civilian rule
Abuja; note - on 12 December 1991 the capital was officially transferred from Lagos to Abuja; most federal government offices have now made the move to Abuja
Administrative divisions:
36 states and 1 territory*; Abia, Abuja Federal Capital Territory*, Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Benue, Borno, Cross River, Delta, Ebonyi, Edo, Ekiti, Enugu, Gombe, Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Lagos, Nassarawa, Niger, Ogun, Ondo, Osun, Oyo, Plateau, Rivers, Sokoto, Taraba, Yobe, Zamfara
1 October 1960 (from UK)
National holiday:
Independence Day (National Day), 1 October (1960)
new constitution adopted May 1999
Legal system:
based on English common law, Islamic Shariah law (only in some northern states), and traditional law
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: President Olusegun OBASANJO (since 29 May 1999); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
head of government: President Olusegun OBASANJO (since 29 May 1999); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
cabinet: Federal Executive Council
elections: president is elected by popular vote for no more than two four-year terms; election last held 27 February 1999 (next to be held 19 April 2003)
election results: Olusegun OBASANJO elected president; percent of vote - Olusegun OBASANJO (PDP) 62.8%, Olu FALAE (APP-AD) 37.2%
Legislative branch:
bicameral National Assembly consists of Senate (109 seats, three from each state and one from the Federal Capital Territory; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms) and House of Representatives (360 seats, members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
elections: Senate - last held 20-24 February 1999 (next to be held 13 April 2003); House of Representatives - last held 20-24 February 1999 (next to be held 13 April 2003)
election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - PDP 58%, APP 23%, AD 19%; seats by party - PDP 67, APP 23, AD 19; House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - PDP 58%, APP 30%, AD 12%; seats by party - PDP 221, APP 70, AD 69
Judicial branch:
Supreme Court (judges appointed by the President); Federal Court of Appeal (judges are appointed by the federal government on the advice of the Advisory Judicial Committee)
Political parties and leaders:
All People's Party or APP [leader NA]; Alliance for Democracy or AD [Alhaji Adamu ABDULKADIR]; People's Democratic Party or PDP [Audu OGBEH]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
International organization participation:
Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Jibril AMINU
consulate(s) general: Atlanta and New York
FAX: [1] (202) 775-1385
telephone: [1] (202) 986-8400
chancery: 1333 16th Street NW, Washington, DC 20036
Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Howard Franklin JETER
embassy: 7 Mambilla Drive, Abuja
mailing address: P. O. Box 554, Lagos
telephone: [234] (9) 523-0916/0906/5857/2235/2205
FAX: [234] (9) 523-0353
Flag description:
three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), white, and green
Economy Nigeria
Economy - overview:
The oil-rich Nigerian economy, long hobbled by political instability, corruption, and poor macroeconomic management, is undergoing substantial economic reform under the new civilian administration. Nigeria's former military rulers failed to diversify the economy away from overdependence on the capital-intensive oil sector, which provides 20% of GDP, 95% of foreign exchange earnings, and about 65% of budgetary revenues. The largely subsistence agricultural sector has failed to keep up with rapid population growth, and Nigeria, once a large net exporter of food, now must import food. Following the signing of an IMF stand-by agreement in August 2000, Nigeria received a debt-restructuring deal from the Paris Club and a $1 billion credit from the IMF, both contingent on economic reforms. The agreement was allowed to expire by the IMF in November 2001, however, and Nigeria appears unlikely to receive substantial multilateral assistance in 2002. Nonetheless, increases in foreign oil investment and oil production should push growth over 4% in 2002.
purchasing power parity - $105.9 billion (2001 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
3.5% (2001 est.)
GDP - per capita:
purchasing power parity - $840 (2001 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 39%
industry: 33%
services: 28% (2000 est.)
Population below poverty line:
45% (2000 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 2%
highest 10%: 41% (1996-97)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
51 (1996-97 )
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
14.9% (2001 est.)
Labor force:
66 million (1999 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture 70%, industry 10%, services 20% (1999 est.)
Unemployment rate:
0.28% 28% (1992 est.) (1992 est.)
revenues: $3.4 billion
expenditures: $3.6 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000 est.)
crude oil, coal, tin, columbite, palm oil, peanuts, cotton, rubber, wood, hides and skins, textiles, cement and other construction materials, food products, footwear, chemicals, fertilizer, printing, ceramics, steel
Industrial production growth rate:
-0.3% (2001 est.)
Electricity - production:
15.9 billion kWh (2000)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 64%
hydro: 36%
other: 0% (2000)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption:
14.768 billion kWh (2000)
Electricity - exports:
19 million kWh (2000)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2000)
Agriculture - products:
cocoa, peanuts, palm oil, corn, rice, sorghum, millet, cassava (tapioca), yams, rubber; cattle, sheep, goats, pigs; timber; fish
$20.3 billion f.o.b. (2001 est.)
Exports - commodities:
petroleum and petroleum products 95%, cocoa, rubber
Exports - partners:
US 46%, Spain 11%, India 6%, France 5%, Brazil (2000)
$13.7 billion f.o.b. (2001 est.)
Imports - commodities:
machinery, chemicals, transport equipment, manufactured goods, food and live animals
Imports - partners:
UK 11%, US 9%, France 9%, Germany 7%, China (2000)
Debt - external:
$32 billion (2000 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
ODA $250 million (1998) (1998)
naira (NGN)
Currency code:
Exchange rates:
nairas per US dollar - 115 (January 2002), 101.697 (2000), 92.338 (1999), 21.886 (1998), 21.886 (1997)
Fiscal year:
calendar year
Communications Nigeria
Telephones - main lines in use:
500,000 (2000 est)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
200,000 (2001)
Telephone system:
general assessment: an inadequate system, further limited by poor maintenance; major expansion is required and a start has been made
domestic: intercity traffic is carried by coaxial cable, microwave radio relay, a domestic communications satellite system with 19 earth stations, and a coastal submarine cable; mobile cellular facilities and the Internet are available
international: satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (2 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean); coaxial submarine cable SAFE (South African Far East)
Radio broadcast stations:
AM 83, FM 36, shortwave 11 (2001)
23.5 million (1997)
Television broadcast stations:
3 (the government controls 2 of the broadcasting stations and 15 repeater stations) (2002)
6.9 million (1997)
Internet country code:
Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
11 (2000)
Internet users:
100,000 (2000)
Transportation Nigeria
total: 3,557 km
narrow gauge: 3,505 km 1.067-m gauge
standard gauge: 52 km 1.435-m gauge
note: years of neglect of both the rolling stock and the right-of-way have seriously reduced the capacity and utility of the system; a project to restore Nigeria's railways is now underway (2001)
total: 193,200 km
paved: 59,892 km (including 1,194 km of expressways)
note: many of the roads reported as paved may be graveled; because of poor maintenance and years of heavy freight traffic - in part the result of the failure of the railroad system - much of the road system is barely usable (2001)
unpaved: 133,308 km
8,575 km
note: consisting of the Niger and Benue rivers and smaller rivers and creeks
crude oil 2,042 km; petroleum products 3,000 km; natural gas 500 km
Ports and harbors:
Calabar, Lagos, Onne, Port Harcourt, Sapele, Warri
Merchant marine:
total: 43 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 331,094 GRT/614,171 DWT
note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Bulgaria 1, Greece 1, Norway 1, Pakistan 1, Togo 1, United States 1 (2002 est.)
ships by type: bulk 1, cargo 7, chemical tanker 4, petroleum tanker 29, roll on/roll off 1, specialized tanker 1
70 (2001)
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 36
over 3,047 m: 7
2,438 to 3,047 m: 10
914 to 1,523 m: 6
under 914 m: 3 (2002)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 10
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 34
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 13
under 914 m: 18 (2002)
1 (2002)
Military Nigeria
Military branches:
Army, Navy, Air Force, Police Force
Military manpower - military age:
18 years of age (2002 est.)
Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 30,808,598 (2002 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service:
males age 15-49: 17,698,911 (2002 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
males: 1,375,112 (2002 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
$374.9 million (FY01)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
1% (FY01)
Transnational Issues Nigeria
Disputes - international:
Nigeria disputes several villages with Benin along the Okpara River, and only 35 km of their common boundary are demarcated; the Benin-Niger-Nigeria tripoint remains undemarcated; Lake Chad Basin Commission urges signatories Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria to ratify delimitation treaty over lake region, the site of continuing armed clashes; oral arguments on the land and maritime boundary disputes between Cameroon and Nigeria were presented to the ICJ; disputes center around Bakasi Peninsula, where armed clashes continue, Bouram Island on Lake Chad, and the maritime boundary and economic zone dispute in the Gulf of Guinea, which also involves Equatorial Guinea; Nigeria requests and Chad rejects redemarcation of boundary, which lacks clear demarcation in sections and has caused several cross-border incidents
Illicit drugs:
a transit point for heroin and cocaine intended for European, East Asian, and North American markets; safehaven for Nigerian narcotraffickers operating worldwide; major money-laundering center; massive corruption and criminal activity, along with unwillingness of the government to address the deficiencies in its anti-money-laundering regime make money laundering a major problem

This page was last updated on 19 March 2003