Country Profile - Niger
Country Profile of Niger
Not until 1993, 35 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 by December 1999.
Location: Western Africa, southeast of Algeria
Head 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
Population: 16,899,327 (July 2013 est.)
Population growth rate:3.32% (2013 est.)
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
Languages: French (official), Hausa, Djerma
Religion: Muslim 80%, remainder indigenous beliefs and Christian
Independence: 3 August 1960 (from France)
Currency: Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XOF); note - responsible authority is the Central Bank of the West African States.