Introduction    Nigeria Top of Page
British influence and control over what would become Nigeria and Africa's most populous country grew through the 19th century. A series of constitutions after World War II granted Nigeria greater autonomy; independence came in 1960. Following nearly 16 years of military rule, a new constitution was adopted in 1999, and a peaceful transition to civilian government was completed. The government continues to face the daunting task of reforming a petroleum-based economy, whose revenues have been squandered through corruption and mismanagement, and institutionalizing democracy. In addition, Nigeria continues to experience longstanding ethnic and religious tensions. Although both the 2003 and 2007 presidential elections were marred by significant irregularities and violence, Nigeria is currently experiencing its longest period of civilian rule since independence. The general elections of April 2007 marked the first civilian-to-civilian transfer of power in the country's history. In January 2010, Nigeria assumed a nonpermanent seat on the UN Security Council for the 2010-11 term.
   Geography    Nigeria Top of Page
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
land: 910,768 sq km
water: 13,000 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:
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 m depth or to the depth of exploitation
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, iron ore, coal, limestone, niobium, lead, zinc, arable land
Land use:
arable land: 33.02%
permanent crops: 3.14%
other: 63.84% (2005)
Irrigated land:
2,820 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources:
286.2 cu km (2003)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):
total: 8.01 cu km/yr (21%/10%/69%)
per capita: 61 cu m/yr (2000)
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, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, 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 Top of Page
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, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2010 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 41.5% (male 31,624,050/female 30,242,637)
15-64 years: 55.5% (male 42,240,641/female 40,566,672)
65 years and over: 3.1% (male 2,211,840/female 2,343,250) (2010 est.)
Median age:
total: 19.1 years
male: 19 years
female: 19.2 years (2010 est.)
Population growth rate:
1.966% (2010 est.)
Birth rate:
36.07 births/1,000 population (2010 est.)
Death rate:
16.31 deaths/1,000 population (July 2010 est.)
Net migration rate:
-0.1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2010 est.)
urban population: 48% of total population (2008)
rate of urbanization: 3.8% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.94 male(s)/female
total population: 1.04 male(s)/female (2010 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: 92.99 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 98.94 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 86.69 deaths/1,000 live births (2010 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 47.24 years
male: 46.46 years
female: 48.08 years (2010 est.)
Total fertility rate:
4.82 children born/woman (2010 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
3.1% (2007 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
2.6 million (2007 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
170,000 (2007 est.)
Major infectious diseases:
noun: very high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A and E, and typhoid fever
vectorborne disease: malaria and yellow fever
respiratory disease: meningococcal meningitis
aerosolized dust or soil contact disease: one of the most highly endemic areas for Lassa fever
water contact disease: leptospirosis and shistosomiasis
animal contact disease: rabies
note: highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza has been identified in this country; it poses a negligible risk with extremely rare cases possible among US citizens who have close contact with birds (2009)
noun: Nigerian(s)
adjective: Nigerian
Ethnic groups:
Nigeria, 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: 68%
male: 75.7%
female: 60.6% (2003 est.)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 9 years
male: 10 years
female: 8 years (2005)
Education expenditures:
0.9% of GDP (1991)
   Government    Nigeria Top of Page
Country name:
conventional long form: Federal Republic of Nigeria
conventional short form: Nigeria
Government type:
federal republic
name: Abuja
geographic coordinates: 9 05 N, 7 32 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions:
36 states and 1 territory*; Abia, Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Benue, Borno, Cross River, Delta, Ebonyi, Edo, Ekiti, Enugu, Federal Capital Territory*, 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 the UK)
National holiday:
Independence Day (National Day), 1 October (1960)
adopted 5 May 1999; effective 29 May 1999
Legal system:
based on English common law, Islamic law (in 12 northern states), and traditional law; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: President Goodluck JONATHAN (since 5 May 2010, acting since 9 February 2010); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government; JONATHAN assumed the presidency on 5 May 2010 following the death of President YAR'ADUA, he was declared Acting President on 9 February 2010 by the National Assembly during the extended illness of the former president
head of government: President Goodluck JONATHAN (since 5 May 2010, acting since 9 February 2010)
cabinet: Federal Executive Council
(For more information visit the World Leaders website )
elections: president elected by popular vote for a four-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 21 April 2007 (next to be held on 22 January 2011)
election results: Umaru Musa YAR'ADUA elected president; percent of vote - Umaru Musa YAR'ADUA 69.8%, Muhammadu BUHARI 18.7%, Atiku ABUBAKAR 7.5%, Orji Uzor KALU 1.7%, other 2.3%
Legislative branch:
bicameral National Assembly consists of the Senate (109 seats, 3 from each state plus 1 from Abuja; 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 on 21 April 2007 (next to be held in April 2011); House of Representatives - last held on 21 April 2007 (next to be held on 15 January 2011)
election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PDP 85, ANPP 16, AC 6, PPA 1, ACCORD 1; House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - PDP 65.1%, ANPP 21.6%, AC 8.8%, PPA 0.8%, LP 0.8%; seats by party - PDP 263, ANPP 63, AC 30, PPA 3, LP 1
Judicial branch:
Supreme Court (judges recommended by the National Judicial Council and appointed by the president); Federal Court of Appeal (judges are appointed by the federal government from a pool of judges recommended by the National Judicial Council)
Political parties and leaders:
Accord Party [Augustine MAZIE, acting]; Action Congress or AC [Bisi AKANDE]; All Nigeria Peoples Party or ANPP [Edwin UME-EZEOKE]; All Progressives Grand Alliance or APGA [Victor C. UMEH]; Alliance for Democracy or AD [Mojisoluwa AKINFENWA]; Conference of Nigerian Political Parities or CNPP [Abdulkadir Balarabe MUSA]; Democratic Peoples Party or DPP [Jeremiah USENI]; Fresh Democratic Party [Chris OKOTIE]; Labor Party [Dan NWANYANWU]; National Democratic Party or NDP [Aliyu Habu FARI]; Peoples Democratic Party or PDP [Vincent OGBULAFOR]; Peoples Progressive Alliance [Larry ESIN]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Academic Staff Union for Universities or ASUU; Campaign for Democracy or CD; Civil Liberties Organization or CLO; Committee for the Defense of Human Rights or CDHR; Constitutional Right Project or CRP; Human Right Africa; National Association of Democratic Lawyers or NADL; National Association of Nigerian Students or NANS; Nigerian Bar Association or NBA; Nigerian Labor Congress or NLC; Nigerian Medical Association or NMA; the press; Universal Defenders of Democracy or UDD
International organization participation:
Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Adebowale Ibidapo ADEFUYE
chancery: 3519 International Court NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 986-8400
FAX: [1] (202) 775-1385
consulate(s) general: Atlanta, New York
Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Robin R. SANDERS
embassy: 1075 Diplomatic Drive, Central District Area, Abuja
mailing address: P. O. Box 5760, Garki, Abuja
telephone: [234] (9) 461-4000
FAX: [234] (9) 461-4036
Flag description:
three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), white, and green; the color green represents the forests and abundant natural wealth of the country, white stands for peace and unity
   Economy    Nigeria Top of Page
Economy - overview:
Oil-rich Nigeria, long hobbled by political instability, corruption, inadequate infrastructure, and poor macroeconomic management, has undertaken several reforms over the past decade. Nigeria's former military rulers failed to diversify the economy away from its overdependence on the capital-intensive oil sector, which provides 95% of foreign exchange earnings and about 80% of budgetary revenues. 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. Nigeria pulled out of its IMF program in April 2002, after failing to meet spending and exchange rate targets, making it ineligible for additional debt forgiveness from the Paris Club. Since 2008 the government has begun showing the political will to implement the market-oriented reforms urged by the IMF, such as to modernize the banking system, to curb inflation by blocking excessive wage demands, and to resolve regional disputes over the distribution of earnings from the oil industry. In 2003, the government began deregulating fuel prices, announced the privatization of the country's four oil refineries, and instituted the National Economic Empowerment Development Strategy, a domestically designed and run program modeled on the IMF's Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility for fiscal and monetary management. In November 2005, Abuja won Paris Club approval for a debt-relief deal that eliminated $18 billion of debt in exchange for $12 billion in payments - a total package worth $30 billion of Nigeria's total $37 billion external debt. The deal subjects Nigeria to stringent IMF reviews. Based largely on increased oil exports and high global crude prices, GDP rose strongly in 2007-09. President YAR'ADUA has pledged to continue the economic reforms of his predecessor with emphasis on infrastructure improvements. Infrastructure is the main impediment to growth. The government is working toward developing stronger public-private partnerships for electricity and roads.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$339 billion (2009 est.)
$319.5 billion (2008 est.)
$303.4 billion (2007 est.)
note: data are in 2009 US dollars
GDP (official exchange rate):
$173.4 billion (2009 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
6.1% (2009 est.)
5.3% (2008 est.)
6.4% (2007 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):
$2,300 (2009 est.)
$2,200 (2008 est.)
$2,100 (2007 est.)
note: data are in 2009 US dollars
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 33.1%
industry: 33.8%
services: 33.1% (2009 est.)
Labor force:
47.33 million (2009 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 70%
industry: 10%
services: 20% (1999 est.)
Unemployment rate:
4.9% (2007 est.)
Population below poverty line:
70% (2007 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 2%
highest 10%: 32.4% (2004)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
43.7 (2003) 50.6 (1997)
Investment (gross fixed):
30.8% of GDP (2009 est.)
revenues: $13.69 billion
expenditures: $21.84 billion (2009 est.)
Public debt:
14.3% of GDP (2009 est.) 9.4% of GDP (2008 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
12.4% (2009 est.) 11.6% (2008 est.)
Central bank discount rate:
6% (31 December 2009) 9.75% (31 December 2008)
Commercial bank prime lending rate:
18.36% (31 December 2009 ) 15.48% (31 December 2008 )
Stock of narrow money:
$33.45 billion (31 December 2009) $35.29 billion (31 December 2008)
Stock of broad money:
$68.26 billion (31 December 2009) $67.34 billion (31 December 2008)
Stock of domestic credit:
$49.51 billion (31 December 2008 est.) $35.68 billion (31 December 2007 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares:
$33.37 billion (31 December 2009) $49.8 billion (31 December 2008) $86.35 billion (31 December 2007)
Agriculture - products:
cocoa, peanuts, cotton, palm oil, corn, rice, sorghum, millet, cassava (tapioca), yams, rubber; cattle, sheep, goats, pigs; timber; fish
crude oil, coal, tin, columbite; rubber products, wood; hides and skins, textiles, cement and other construction materials, food products, footwear, chemicals, fertilizer, printing, ceramics, steel
Industrial production growth rate:
-0.4% (2009 est.)
Electricity - production:
21.92 billion kWh (2007 est.)
Electricity - consumption:
19.21 billion kWh (2007 est.)
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2008 est.)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2008 est.)
Oil - production:
2.211 million bbl/day (2009 est.)
Oil - consumption:
280,000 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Oil - exports:
2.327 million bbl/day (2007 est.)
Oil - imports:
170,000 bbl/day (2007 est.)
Oil - proved reserves:
37.2 billion bbl (1 January 2010 est.)
Natural gas - production:
32.82 billion cu m (2008 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
12.28 billion cu m (2008 est.)
Natural gas - exports:
20.55 billion cu m (2008 est.)
Natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves:
5.246 trillion cu m (1 January 2010 est.)
Current account balance:
$10.01 billion (2009 est.) $39.36 billion (2008 est.)
$47.75 billion (2009 est.) $78.34 billion (2008 est.)
Exports - commodities:
petroleum and petroleum products 95%, cocoa, rubber
Exports - partners:
US 35.08%, India 10.43%, Brazil 9.32%, Spain 7.19%, France 4.65% (2009)
$32.99 billion (2009 est.) $34.35 billion (2008 est.)
Imports - commodities:
machinery, chemicals, transport equipment, manufactured goods, food and live animals
Imports - partners:
China 14.89%, US 8.88%, Netherlands 8.18%, South Korea 5.46%, UK 4.63%, France 4.19% (2009)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$46.79 billion (31 December 2009 est.) $53 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
Debt - external:
$9.689 billion (31 December 2009 est.) $9.996 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
$53.67 billion (31 December 2009 est.) $50.67 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:
$12.91 billion (31 December 2009 est.) $12.86 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
Exchange rates:
nairas (NGN) per US dollar - 150.48 (2009), 117.8 (2008), 127.46 (2007), 127.38 (2006), 132.59 (2005)
   Communications    Nigeria Top of Page
Telephones - main lines in use:
1.308 million (2008)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
62.988 million (2008)
Telephone system:
general assessment: further expansion and modernization of the fixed-line telephone network is needed; network quality remains a problem
domestic: the addition of a second fixed-line provider in 2002 resulted in faster growth but subscribership remains only about 1 per 100 persons; mobile-cellular services growing rapidly, in part responding to the shortcomings of the fixed-line network; multiple cellular providers operate nationally with subscribership reaching 45 per 100 persons in 2008
international: country code - 234; landing point for the SAT-3/WASC fiber-optic submarine cable that provides connectivity to Europe and Asia; satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (2 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean) (2008)
Radio broadcast stations:
AM 83, FM 36, shortwave 11 (2001)
Television broadcast stations:
3 (the government controls 2 of the broadcasting stations and 15 repeater stations) (2001)
Broadcast media:
nearly 70 federal-government-controlled national and regional TV stations; all 36 states operate TV stations; several private TV stations operational; cable and satellite TV subscription services are available; network of federal-government-controlled national, regional, and state radio stations; roughly 40 state-government-owned radio stations typically carry their own programs except for news broadcasts; about 20 private radio stations also operate; transmissions of international broadcasters are available (2007)
Internet country code:
Internet hosts:
1,378 (2010)
Internet users:
43.989 million (2009)
   Transportation    Nigeria Top of Page
54 (2010)
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 38
over 3,047 m: 9
2,438 to 3,047 m: 11
1,524 to 2,437 m: 10
914 to 1,523 m: 5
under 914 m: 3 (2010)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 16
over 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 11
under 914 m: 2 (2010)
4 (2010)
condensate 26 km; gas 2,565 km; liquid petroleum gas 97 km; oil 3,424 km; refined products 4,090 km (2009)
total: 3,505 km
narrow gauge: 3,505 km 1.067-m gauge (2008)
total: 193,200 km
paved: 28,980 km
unpaved: 164,220 km (2004)
8,600 km (Niger and Benue rivers and smaller rivers and creeks) (2009)
Merchant marine:
total: 98
by type: cargo 4, chemical tanker 30, liquefied gas 2, passenger/cargo 1, petroleum tanker 60, specialized tanker 1
foreign-owned: 4 (India 1, Spain 1, UK 2)
registered in other countries: 37 (Bahamas 2, Belize 2, Bermuda 11, Comoros 1, Italy 1, Liberia 4, Malaysia 1, Malta 1, North Korea 1, Panama 7, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 1, Seychelles 1, unknown 4) (2010)
Ports and terminals:
Bonny Inshore Terminal, Calabar, Lagos
Transportation - note:
the International Maritime Bureau reports the territorial and offshore waters in the Niger Delta and Gulf of Guinea as high risk for piracy and armed robbery against ships; numerous commercial vessels have been attacked and hijacked both at anchor and while underway; crews have been robbed and stores or cargoes stolen
   Military    Nigeria Top of Page
Military branches:
Nigerian Armed Forces: Army, Navy, Air Force (2008)
Military service age and obligation:
18 years of age for voluntary military service (2007)
Manpower available for military service:
males age 16-49: 37,087,711
females age 16-49: 35,232,127 (2010 est.)
Manpower fit for military service:
males age 16-49: 20,839,976
females age 16-49: 19,867,683 (2010 est.)
Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
male: 1,767,428
female: 1,687,719 (2010 est.)
Military expenditures:
1.5% of GDP (2006)
   Transnational Issues    Nigeria Top of Page
Joint Border Commission with Cameroon reviewed 2002 ICJ ruling on the entire boundary and bilaterally resolved differences, including June 2006 Greentree Agreement that immediately cedes sovereignty of the Bakassi Peninsula to Cameroon with a phase-out of Nigerian control within two years while resolving patriation issues; the ICJ ruled on an equidistance settlement of Cameroon-Equatorial Guinea-Nigeria maritime boundary in the Gulf of Guinea, but imprecisely defined coordinates in the ICJ decision and a sovereignty dispute between Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon over an island at the mouth of the Ntem River all contribute to the delay in implementation; only Nigeria and Cameroon have heeded the Lake Chad Commission's admonition to ratify the delimitation treaty which also includes the Chad-Niger and Niger-Nigeria boundaries; location of Benin-Niger-Nigeria tripoint is unresolved
Refugees and internally displaced persons:

refugees (country of origin): 5,778 (Liberia)
IDPs: undetermined (communal violence between Christians and Muslims since President OBASANJO's election in 1999; displacement is mostly short-term) (2007)
Illicit drugs:
a transit point for heroin and cocaine intended for European, East Asian, and North American markets; consumer of amphetamines; safe haven for Nigerian narcotraffickers operating worldwide; major money-laundering center; massive corruption and criminal activity; Nigeria has improved some anti-money-laundering controls, resulting in its removal from the Financial Action Task Force's (FATF's) Noncooperative Countries and Territories List in June 2006; Nigeria's anti-money-laundering regime continues to be monitored by FATF

This page was last updated on 14 May 2009


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