[Country map of Nigeria]



Location: Western Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Benin and Cameroon

Map references: Africa

total area: 923,770 sq km
land area: 910,770 sq km
comparative area: slightly more than twice the size of California

Land boundaries: total 4,047 km, Benin 773 km, Cameroon 1,690 km, Chad 87 km, Niger 1,497 km

Coastline: 853 km

Maritime claims:
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
territorial sea: 30 nm

International disputes: demarcation of international boundaries in Lake Chad, the lack of which led to border incidents in the past, is completed and awaits ratification by Cameroon, Chad, Niger, and Nigeria; dispute with Cameroon over land and maritime boundaries in the vicinity of the Bakasi Peninsula has been referred to the International Court of Justice

Climate: varies; equatorial in south, tropical in center, arid in north

Terrain: southern lowlands merge into central hills and plateaus; mountains in southeast, plains in north

Natural resources: petroleum, tin, columbite, iron ore, coal, limestone, lead, zinc, natural gas

Land use:
arable land: 31%
permanent crops: 3%
meadows and pastures: 23%
forest and woodland: 15%
other: 28%

Irrigated land: 8,650 sq km (1989 est.)

current issues: soil degradation; rapid deforestation; desertification; recent droughts in north severely affecting marginal agricultural activities
natural hazards: periodic droughts
international agreements: party to - Biodiversity, Climate Change, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection


Population: 101,232,251 (July 1995 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 45% (female 22,643,026; male 22,850,322)
15-64 years: 52% (female 25,842,286; male 26,978,906)
65 years and over: 3% (female 1,438,392; male 1,479,319) (July 1995 est.)

Population growth rate: 3.16% (1995 est.)

Birth rate: 43.26 births/1,000 population (1995 est.)

Death rate: 12.01 deaths/1,000 population (1995 est.)

Net migration rate: 0.35 migrant(s)/1,000 population (1995 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 72.6 deaths/1,000 live births (1995 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 55.98 years
male: 54.69 years
female: 57.3 years (1995 est.)

Total fertility rate: 6.31 children born/woman (1995 est.)

noun: Nigerian(s)
adjective: Nigerian

Ethnic divisions:
north: Hausa and Fulani
southwest: Yoruba
southeast: Ibos non-Africans 27,000
note: Hausa and Fulani, Yoruba, and Ibos together make up 65% of population

Religions: Muslim 50%, Christian 40%, indigenous beliefs 10%

Languages: English (official), Hausa, Yoruba, Ibo, Fulani

Literacy: age 15 and over can read and write (1990 est.)
total population: 51%
male: 62%
female: 40%

Labor force: 42.844 million
by occupation: agriculture 54%, industry, commerce, and services 19%, government 15%


conventional long form: Federal Republic of Nigeria
conventional short form: Nigeria

Digraph: NI

Type: military government since 31 December 1983; plans to institute a constitutional conference to prepare for a new transition to civilian rule after plans for a transition in 1993 were negated by General BABANGIDA

Capital: Abuja
note: on 12 December 1991 the capital was officially moved from Lagos to Abuja; many government offices remain in Lagos pending completion of facilities in Abuja

Administrative divisions: 30 states and 1 territory*; Abia, Abuja Capital Territory*, Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Bauchi, Benue, Borno, Cross River, Delta, Edo, Enugu, Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Lagos, Niger, Ogun, Ondo, Osun, Oyo, Plateau, Rivers, Sokoto, Taraba, Yobe

Independence: 1 October 1960 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day, 1 October (1960)

Constitution: 1979 constitution still in force; plan for 1989 constitution to take effect in 1993 was not implemented

Legal system: based on English common law, Islamic law, and tribal law

Suffrage: 21 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
chief of state and head of government: Chairman of the Provisional Ruling Council and Commander in Chief of Armed Forces and Defense Minister Gen. Sani ABACHA (since 17 November 1993); Vice-Chairman of the Provisional Ruling Council Oladipo DIYA (since 17 November 1993)
cabinet: Federal Executive Council

Legislative branch: bicameral National Assembly
Senate: suspended after coup of 17 November 1993
House of Representatives: suspended after coup of 17 November 1993

Judicial branch: Supreme Court, Federal Court of Appeal

Political parties and leaders:
note: two political party system suspended after the coup of 17 November 1993


Diplomatic representation in US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Zubair Mahmud KAZAURE
chancery: 1333 16th Street NW, Washington, DC 20036
telephone: [1] (202) 986-8400
consulate(s) general: New York

US diplomatic representation:
chief of mission: Ambassador Walter C. CARRINGTON
embassy: 2 Eleke Crescent, Lagos
mailing address: P. O. Box 554, Lagos
telephone: [234] (1) 261-0097
FAX: [234] (1) 261-0257
branch office: Abuja
consulate(s) general: Kaduna

Flag: three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), white, and green


Overview: The oil-rich Nigerian economy continues to be hobbled by political instability and poor macroeconomic management. Nigeria's unpopular military rulers show no sign of wanting to restore democratic civilian rule in the near future and appear divided on how to redress fundamental economic imbalances that cause troublesome inflation and the steady depreciation of the naira. The government's domestic and international arrears continue to limit economic growth - even in the oil sector - and prevent an agreement with the IMF and bilateral creditors on debt relief. The inefficient (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.

National product: GDP - purchasing power parity - $122.6 billion (1994 est.)

National product real growth rate: -0.8% (1994 est.)

National product per capita: $1,250 (1994 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 53% (1993 est.)

Unemployment rate: 28% (1992 est.)

revenues: $9 billion
expenditures: $10.8 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (1992 est.)

Exports: $11.9 billion (f.o.b., 1992)
commodities: oil 95%, cocoa, rubber
partners: US 54%, EC 23%

Imports: $8.3 billion (c.i.f., 1992)
commodities: machinery and equipment, manufactured goods, food and animals
partners: EC 64%, US 10%, Japan 7%

External debt: $29.5 billion (1992)

Industrial production: growth rate 7.7% (1991); accounts for 43% of GDP, including petroleum

capacity: 4,570,000 kW
production: 11.3 billion kWh
consumption per capita: 109 kWh (1993)

Industries: crude oil and mining - coal, tin, columbite; primary processing industries - palm oil, peanut, cotton, rubber, wood, hides and skins; manufacturing industries - textiles, cement, building materials, food products, footwear, chemical, printing, ceramics, steel

Agriculture: accounts for 35% of GDP and half of labor force; cash crops - cocoa, peanuts, palm oil, rubber; food crops - corn, rice, sorghum, millet, cassava, yams; livestock - cattle, sheep, goats, pigs; fishing and forestry resources extensively exploited

Illicit drugs: passenger and cargo air hub for West Africa; facilitates movement of heroin en route from Southeast and Southwest Asia to Western Europe and North America; increasingly a transit route for cocaine from South America intended for West European, East Asian, and North American markets

Economic aid:
recipient: US commitments, including Ex-Im (FY70-89), $705 million; Western (non-US) countries, ODA and OOF bilateral commitments (1970-89), $3 billion; Communist countries (1970-89), $2.2 billion

Currency: 1 naira (N) = 100 kobo

Exchange rates: naira (N) per US$1 - 21.996 (January 1995), 21.996 (1994), 22.065 (1993), 17.298 (1992), 9.909 (1991), 8.038 (1990)

Fiscal year: calendar year


total: 3,567 km
narrow gauge: 3,505 km 1.067-m gauge
standard gauge: 62 km 1.435-m gauge

total: 107,990 km
paved: mostly bituminous-surface treatment 30,019 km
unpaved: gravel, crushed stone, improved earth 25,411 km; unimproved earth 52,560 km

Inland waterways: 8,575 km consisting of Niger and Benue Rivers and smaller rivers and creeks

Pipelines: crude oil 2,042 km; petroleum products 3,000 km; natural gas 500 km

Ports: Calabar, Lagos, Onne, Port Harcourt, Sapele, Warri

Merchant marine:
total: 32 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 404,064 GRT/661,850 DWT
ships by type: bulk 1, cargo 14, chemical tanker 3, liquefied gas tanker 1, oil tanker 12, roll-on/roll-off cargo 1

total: 80
with paved runways over 3,047 m: 6
with paved runways 2,438 to 3,047 m: 10
with paved runways 1,524 to 2,437 m: 10
with paved runways 914 to 1,523 m: 7
with paved runways under 914 m: 25
with unpaved runways 1,524 to 2,438 m: 1
with unpaved runways 914 to 1,523 m: 21


Telephone system: NA telephones; above-average system limited by poor maintenance; major expansion in progress
local: NA
intercity: microwave radio relay, coaxial cable, and 20 domestic satellite earth stations carry intercity traffic
international: 3 INTELSAT earth stations (2 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean) and 1 coaxial submarine cable carry international traffic

broadcast stations: AM 35, FM 17, shortwave 0
radios: NA

broadcast stations: 28
televisions: NA

Defense Forces

Branches: Army, Navy, Air Force, paramilitary Police Force

Manpower availability: males age 15-49 23,167,009; males fit for military service 13,246,223; males reach military age (18) annually 1,024,059 (1995 est.)

Defense expenditures: exchange rate conversion - $172 million, about 1% of GDP (1992)