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Niger Facts





Important FAQs about Niger

Where is Niger?
The Republic of Niger is a landlocked country in West Africa. It is bordered by Nigeria and Benin to the south, Burkina Faso and Mali to the west, Algeria and Libya to the north and Chad to the east. It is named after the Niger River. Niger is the largest nation in West Africa and covers a land area of almost 489,678 square miles.

What is the capital of Niger?
Niamey is the capital of Niger. It is situated on the east bank of the Niger River. It is an administrative, cultural and economic center, and has the largest mosque in the country, The Grand Mosque of Niamey. It is also the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Niamey.

What is the currency of Niger?
West African CFA franc is the currency of Niger. The acronym CFA stands for Communaute Financiere d' Afrique. Its ISO 4217 code is XOF and is issued by Central Bank of the West African States. The franc is subdivided into 100 centimes but no centime denomination have been issued.

Which is the largest city of Niger?
Niamey is the largest city of Niger. It was probably founded in the eighteenth century. It became an important center during the French colonial period. Niger is located in the pearl millet growing region. It has an estimated population of 774,235 and covers an area of 92.4 square miles.

What is the official language of Niger?
French is the official language of Niger. Hausa, Djema, Fulfulde, Kanuri, Tamachek, Toubou and Arabic are other national languages spoken in the country.

What is the religion of Niger?
Islam is the dominant religion in Niger. It is practiced by more than 90% of the population. Christians account for less than 5% of the population while rest of the population practice traditional indigenous religious beliefs.


What is the literacy rate of Niger?
Literacy rate of Niger is very low: 29%. Primary education is compulsory for six years.

What is the national emblem of Niger?
The emblem of Niger depicts a four-part flag draping in the orange, white and green. In the middle, a white shield is placed. On the shield there are four golden symbols. In the middle, there is a sun, to the left there is a vertical spear with two crossed Tuareg swords, to the right there are three pearl millet heads and at the bottom is a Zebu head. Beneath the shield and the flags, there is a ribbon bearing the name of country in French: Republique du Niger. It was adopted in 1959.

Who is the political leader of Niger?
Niger is a semi-presidential representative democratic republic. The president of the country is the head of the state, while the prime minister is the head of the government. Both the government and the national assembly have the legislative powers, while the executive power is exercised only by the government.
Mahamadou Issoufou is the current president of Niger. He served as the prime minister of the country from 1993 to 1994. He assumed office on April 7, 2011. Former minister of agriculture and the fourth vice-president of the national assembly, Brigi Rafini is the current prime minister of the country. He assumed office on April 7, 2011.


When is the national day of Niger celebrated?
The national day of Niger, also known as the republic day, is celebrated on December 18. Since 1958, December 18 has been a historic day though it was not declared a national festival until 2005. This day commemorates the founding of the republic and the creation of presidency of Niger.

What is the economy of Niger like?
Niger is a developing country. It ranks 167 out of 169 countries in terms of the United Nations' Human Development Index (HDI). The GDP of the country is 10.75 billion dollars and the economy is based primarily upon internal markets, subsistence agriculture and export of raw commodities. Japan, Nigeria, France, Algeria and Belgium are the main trading partners of the country. Niger exports Uranium ore, livestock, cow peas and onions while it imports machinery, food, vehicles and petroleum.

Interesting facts about Niger
Fact 1Did you know that the official language of Niger is not Swahili but French?
Fact 2Zinder was the former capital of Niger before Niamey was declared as its official capital in 1926.
Fact 3Niger is primarily divided into seven regions and one capital district.
Fact 4Niger shares its territorial boundaries with seven other African countries. They being Nigeria, Chad, Algeria, Mali, Burkina Faso, Benin and Libya.
Fact 5The name Niger is derived from the phrase gher n-gheren which means "river among rivers," in the Tamashek language.
Fact 6The currency of Niger is the CFA Franc (CFAF).
Fact 7Niger has lowest 'Human Development Index' on Earth.
Fact 8Niger apparently ranks among the poorest economies in the world.
Fact 9The country of Niger is one of the hottest countries in the world and is famously nicknamed as 'Frying Pan of the World'.
Fact 10Mt. Greboun is the highest point in Niger. It stands approximately 6,379 feet (1,944 meters) tall.
Fact 11Niger is home to one of the world's largest protected reserves, the Air and Tenere Natural Reserves, which is the refuge for animals like addax, Cheetah, oryx and the gazelle.
Fact 12The people of Niger are called as Nigeriens.
Fact 13The remains of the dinosaur 'Nigersaurus', better known for its long neck and hammerhead skull was discovered in Niger.
Fact 14The Hausa forms the largest ethnic group in Niger and comprises of more than half of the total population of the country.
Fact 15Slavery was declared illegal in Niger in May 2004.
Fact 16The sprawling Musée National du Niger is one of West Africa's excellent standouts.
Fact 17Niger's initial contacts with the West began whenthe first European explorers, Mungo Park (British) and Heinrich Barth (German) came to the land looking for the Niger River.
Fact 18The land of Niger is vaguely less than twice the size of the US state of Texas.
Fact 19According to a 2008 survey, there are approximately 80, 000 internet users in Niger.
Fact 20On August 3, 1960 Niger became independent from France and experienced single-party and military rule till 1991.
Fact 21The Nigerian flag is perfectly square in shape and the colors of orange, white and green stand for the Sahara desert, purity and innocence, and green vegetation and fruitful agricultural areas of the country respectively.
Fact 22Today many of the Tuareg are leading settled lives as small scale farmers or market gardeners.
Fact 23A yearly festival called the Cure Salee brings together the nomadic herders. The single men dress in their finest clothes, paint their faces and dance for many hours; the women choose the husband they prefer.
Fact 24There are many dinosaur remains in an area of the Sahara in Niger.
Fact 25Niger's most valuable natural resource is its uranium mines, though their worth has declined in recent years because of the fall in the price of uranium.
Fact 26The people of Niger have for hundreds of years produced salt by evaporation; circular indentations in the sand are filled with saline water which eventually evaporates leaving salt deposits.
Fact 27Tree of Ténéré (sculpture) in Agadez. Metal sculpture in the site where was standing lonely tree, reportedly - the loneliest tree in the world. This Acacia was standing 400 km from the nearest tree until it was knocked down by a car in 1973.
Fact 28Madarounfa Lake in Maradi, around this lake is 99 graves of Muslim saints. Site of legends about unusual event such as gatherings of light on Thursday evenings.


Last Updated on: May 05, 2016



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