Nigeria

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PAGE LAST UPDATED ON NOVEMBER 10, 2011
Flag of Nigeria
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Location of Nigeria
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Introduction

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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.
 
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Geography

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Western Africa, bordering the Gulf of Guinea, between Benin and Cameroon
 
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10 00 N, 8 00 E
 
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total: 923,768 sq km
country comparison to the world: 32
land: 910,768 sq km
water: 13,000 sq km
 
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slightly more than twice the size of California
 
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total: 4,047 km
border countries: Benin 773 km, Cameroon 1,690 km, Chad 87 km, Niger 1,497 km
 
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853 km
 
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territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 m depth or to the depth of exploitation
 
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varies; equatorial in south, tropical in center, arid in north
 
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southern lowlands merge into central hills and plateaus; mountains in southeast, plains in north
 
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lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Chappal Waddi 2,419 m
 
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natural gas, petroleum, tin, iron ore, coal, limestone, niobium, lead, zinc, arable land
 
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arable land: 33.02%
permanent crops: 3.14%
other: 63.84% (2005)
 
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2,930 sq km (2008)
 
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286.2 cu km (2003)
 
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total: 8.01 cu km/yr (21%/10%/69%)
per capita: 61 cu m/yr (2000)
 
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periodic droughts; flooding
 
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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
 
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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
 
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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
 
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People and Society

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noun: Nigerian(s)
adjective: Nigerian
 
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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%
 
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English (official), Hausa, Yoruba, Igbo (Ibo), Fulani, over 500 additional indigenous languages
 
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Muslim 50%, Christian 40%, indigenous beliefs 10%
 
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155,215,573 (July 2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 8
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
 
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0-14 years: 40.9% (male 32,476,681/female 31,064,539)
15-64 years: 55.9% (male 44,296,228/female 42,534,542)
65 years and over: 3.1% (male 2,341,228/female 2,502,355) (2011 est.)
 
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total: 19.2 years
male: 19.2 years
female: 19.3 years (2011 est.)
 
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1.935% (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 59
 
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35.51 births/1,000 population (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 27
 
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16.06 deaths/1,000 population (July 2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 4
 
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-0.1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 123
 
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urban population: 50% of total population (2010)
rate of urbanization: 3.5% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
 
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Lagos 10.203 million; Kano 3.304 million; Ibadan 2.762 million; ABUJA (capital) 1.857 million; Kaduna 1.519 million (2009)
 
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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 (2011 est.)
 
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840 deaths/100,000 live births (2008)
country comparison to the world: 9
 
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total: 91.54 deaths/1,000 live births
country comparison to the world: 10
male: 97.42 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 85.31 deaths/1,000 live births (2011 est.)
 
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total population: 47.56 years
country comparison to the world: 220
male: 46.76 years
female: 48.41 years (2011 est.)
 
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4.73 children born/woman (2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 27
 
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5.8% of GDP (2009)
country comparison to the world: 117
 
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0.395 physicians/1,000 population (2008)
country comparison to the world: 131
 
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0.53 beds/1,000 population (2004)
country comparison to the world: 168
 
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improved:
urban: 75% of population
rural: 42% of population
total: 58% of population
unimproved:
urban: 25% of population
rural: 58% of population
total: 42% of population (2008)
 
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improved:
urban: 36% of population
rural: 28% of population
total: 32% of population
unimproved:
urban: 67% of population
rural: 72% of population
total: 68% of population (2008)
 
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3.6% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 17
 
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3.3 million (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 2
 
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220,000 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 2
 
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degree of risk: 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)
 
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26.7% (2008)
country comparison to the world: 24
 
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NA
 
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definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 68%
male: 75.7%
female: 60.6% (2003 est.)
 
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total: 9 years
male: 10 years
female: 8 years (2005)
 
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Government

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conventional long form: Federal Republic of Nigeria
conventional short form: Nigeria
 
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federal republic
 
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name: Abuja
geographic coordinates: 9 05 N, 7 32 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
 
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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
 
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1 October 1960 (from the UK)
 
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Independence Day (National Day), 1 October (1960)
 
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adopted 5 May 1999; effective 29 May 1999
 
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mixed legal system of English common law, Islamic law (in 12 northern states), and traditional law
 
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accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
 
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18 years of age; universal
 
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chief of state: President Goodluck JONATHAN (since 5 May 2010, acting since 9 February 2010); Vice President Mohammed Namadi SAMBO (since 19 May 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; JONATHAN 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); Vice President Mohammed Namadi SAMBO (since 19 May 2010)
cabinet: Federal Executive Council
(For more information visit the World Leaders website Opens in New Window)
elections: president elected by popular vote for a four-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 16 April 2011 (next to be held in April 2015)
election results: Goodluck JONATHAN elected president; percent of vote - Goodluck JONATHAN 58.9%, Muhammadu BUHARI 32.0%, Nuhu RIBADU 5.4%, Ibrahim SHEKARAU 2.4%, other 1.3%
 
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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 9 April 2011 (next to be held in 2015); House of Representatives - last held on 9 April 2011 (next to be held in 2015)
election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PDP 45, ACN 13, ANPP 7, CPC 5, other 4; House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PDP 123, ACN 47, CPC 30, ANPP 25, other 9; note - due to logistical problems elections in a number of constituencies were postponed
 
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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)
 
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Accord Party [Augustine MAZIE, acting]; Action Congress of Nigeria or ACN [Bisi AKANDE]; All Nigeria Peoples Party or ANPP [Ogbonnaya ONU]; 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]; Congress for Progressive Change or CPC; 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 [Dr. Okwesilieze NWODO]; Peoples Progressive Alliance [Larry ESIN]
 
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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
 
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ACP, AfDB, AU, C, CD, D-8, ECOWAS, FAO, G-15, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, MINURSO, MONUSCO, NAM, OAS (observer), OIC, OPCW, OPEC, PCA, UN, UN Security Council (temporary), UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, UNISFA, UNITAR, UNMIL, UNMISS, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
 
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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
 
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chief of mission: Ambassador Terence P. MCCULLEY
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
 
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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
 
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eagle
 
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name: "Arise Oh Compatriots, Nigeria's Call Obey"
lyrics/music: John A. ILECHUKWU, Eme Etim AKPAN, B. A. OGUNNAIKE, Sotu OMOIGUI and P. O. ADERIBIGBE/Benedict Elide ODIASE
note: adopted 1978; the lyrics are a mixture of five of the top entries in a national contest
 
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Economy

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Oil-rich Nigeria has been hobbled by political instability, corruption, inadequate infrastructure, and poor macroeconomic management but in 2008 began pursuing economic reforms. 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. 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. Since 2008 the government has begun to show the political will to implement the market-oriented reforms urged by the IMF, such as modernizing the banking system, curbing inflation by blocking excessive wage demands, and resolving regional disputes over the distribution of earnings from the oil industry. GDP rose strongly in 2007-10 because of increased oil exports and high global crude prices in 2010. President JONATHAN has pledged to continue the economic reforms of his predecessor with emphasis on infrastructure improvements. Infrastructure is the main impediment to growth and in August 2010 JONATHAN unveiled a power sector blueprint that includes privatization of the state-run electricity generation and distribution facilities. The government also is working toward developing stronger public-private partnerships for roads. Nigeria's financial sector was hurt by the global financial and economic crises and the Central Bank governor has taken measures to strengthen that sector.
 
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$377.9 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 32
$348.7 billion (2009 est.)
$326 billion (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars
 
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$216.8 billion (2010 est.)
 
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8.4% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 15
7% (2009 est.)
6% (2008 est.)
 
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$2,500 (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 183
$2,300 (2009 est.)
$2,200 (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars
 
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agriculture: 30%
industry: 32%
services: 38% (2010 est.)
 
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50.48 million (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 11
 
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agriculture: 70%
industry: 10%
services: 20% (1999 est.)
 
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4.9% (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 43
 
 
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70% (2007 est.)
 
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lowest 10%: 2%
highest 10%: 32.4% (2004)
 
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43.7 (2003)
country comparison to the world: 46
50.6 (1997)
 
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13.6% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 171
 
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revenues: $20.55 billion
expenditures: $27.9 billion (2010 est.)
 
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9.5% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 208
 
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-3.4% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 109
 
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17.8% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 113
15.3% of GDP (2009 est.)
 
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13.7% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 213
11.5% (2009 est.)
 
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4.25% (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 66
6% (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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17.585% (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 31
18.362% (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$34.65 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 52
$33.45 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$74.08 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 59
$71.98 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$70.1 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 56
$61.9 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$50.88 billion (31 December 2010)
country comparison to the world: 54
$33.32 billion (31 December 2009)
$49.8 billion (31 December 2008)
 
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cocoa, peanuts, cotton, palm oil, corn, rice, sorghum, millet, cassava (tapioca), yams, rubber; cattle, sheep, goats, pigs; timber; fish
 
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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
 
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5.3% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 77
 
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20.13 billion kWh (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 70
 
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18.14 billion kWh (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 72
 
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0 kWh (2009 est.)
 
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0 kWh (2009 est.)
 
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2.458 million bbl/day (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 10
 
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279,000 bbl/day (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 47
 
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2.102 million bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 8
 
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187,700 bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 50
 
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37.2 billion bbl (1 January 2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 10
 
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23.21 billion cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 28
 
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7.216 billion cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 52
 
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15.99 billion cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 15
 
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0 cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 105
 
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5.292 trillion cu m (1 January 2011 est.)
country comparison to the world: 8
 
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$21.85 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 15
$13.15 billion (2009 est.)
 
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$73.7 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 39
$56.12 billion (2009 est.)
 
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petroleum and petroleum products 95%, cocoa, rubber
 
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US 37.4%, India 10.5%, Brazil 7.8%, Spain 6.9% (2010)
 
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$53.46 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 50
$30.78 billion (2009 est.)
 
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machinery, chemicals, transport equipment, manufactured goods, food and live animals
 
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China 15.4%, Netherlands 9.7%, US 9.3%, France 4.8%, UK 4.2% (2010)
 
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$34.92 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 44
$44.76 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$9.16 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 95
$7.846 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$69.4 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 50
$63.35 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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$9.521 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 51
$8.606 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
 
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nairas (NGN) per US dollar -
150.88 (2010)
148.9 (2009)
117.8 (2008)
127.46 (2007)
127.38 (2006)
 
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Communications

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1.05 million (2010)
country comparison to the world: 75
 
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87.298 million (2010)
country comparison to the world: 12
 
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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 50 per 100 persons in 2009
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) (2009)
 
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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)
 
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.ng
 
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1,378 (2010)
country comparison to the world: 163
 
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43.989 million (2009)
country comparison to the world: 9
 
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Transportation

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54 (2010)
country comparison to the world: 87
 
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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)
 
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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)
 
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4 (2010)
 
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condensate 26 km; gas 2,756 km; liquid petroleum gas 97 km; oil 3,441 km; refined products 4,090 km (2010)
 
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total: 3,505 km
country comparison to the world: 49
narrow gauge: 3,505 km 1.067-m gauge (2010)
 
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total: 193,200 km
country comparison to the world: 26
paved: 28,980 km
unpaved: 164,220 km (2004)
 
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8,600 km (Niger and Benue rivers and smaller rivers and creeks) (2009)
country comparison to the world: 15
 
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total: 98
country comparison to the world: 51
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)
 
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Bonny Inshore Terminal, Calabar, Lagos
 
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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; in 2010, 19 commercial vessels were boarded or attacked with most occurring in the vicinity of the port of Lagos; crews were robbed and stores or cargoes stolen
 
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Military

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Nigerian Armed Forces: Army, Navy, Air Force (2008)
 
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18 years of age for voluntary military service (2007)
 
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males age 16-49: 37,087,711
females age 16-49: 35,232,127 (2010 est.)
 
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males age 16-49: 20,839,976
females age 16-49: 19,867,683 (2010 est.)
 
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male: 1,767,428
female: 1,687,719 (2010 est.)
 
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1.5% of GDP (2006)
country comparison to the world: 96
 
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Transnational Issues

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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
 
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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)
 
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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
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