Niger

Africa

BIP pro Kopf ($)
$592.2
Population (in 2021)
26.0 million

Bewertung

Länderrisiko
D
Geschäftsklima
C
Zuvor
D
Zuvor
C

suggestions

Zusammenfassung

Stärken

  • World’s seventh-largest producer of uranium (2021)
  • Exporter of gold and oil
  • Investment efforts in agriculture and infrastructure

Schwächen

  • Vulnerability to climate shocks and commodity-price fluctuations
  • Reliance on subsistence agriculture and energy imports from Nigeria (70% of electricity supply)
  • Suspension from the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) after the coup in July 2023
  • Landlocked
  • Rapid population growth, high poverty (3rd lowest HDI in the world), chronic food crisis
  • Poor collection of taxes and customs duties
  • Endemic corruption and a significant informal sector
  • Terrorist attacks, especially in the southeast

Handelsaustausch

Exportvon Waren in % der Gesamtmenge

Europa
34%
Mali
26%
Nigerien
10%
Türkei
5%
Tschad
4%

Importvon Waren in % der Gesamtmenge

China 34 %
34%
Europa 19 %
19%
Thailand 15 %
15%
Nigerien 4 %
4%
USA 4 %
4%

Ausblick

Dieser Abschnitt ist ein wertvolles Instrument für Finanzverantwortliche und Kreditmanager in Unternehmen. Er enthält Informationen über die Zahlungs- und Inkassopraktiken, die in dem Land üblich sind.

Growth subject to the lifting of sanctions

After experiencing a significant decline in 2023 due to international economic sanctions imposed following the July 2023 coup d'état, economic activity is expected to rebound sharply in 2024 provided that sanctions gradually ease from early 2024. Growth will be supported by the increase in oil production and exports after the inauguration in late 2023 of a pipeline built by the China National Petroleum Company connecting the Agadem fields to neighbouring Benin. Resumption of uranium production will also contribute to growth is conditional on the lifting of the embargo imposed by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in retaliation for the coup. Production was mired by setback in 2023 due to the shortage of chemicals necessary for its extraction caused by the closure of borders with neighbouring countries, except for Burkina Faso and Mali. Construction of the Kandadji hydroelectric dam by China Gezhouba Group was interrupted by sanctions causing the halt of international financing and material shortages will also be a driving factor. Moreover, industrial activity and services will benefit from the resumption of electricity imports from Nigeria. However, the growth outlook could be hindered by a decline in agricultural performance (40% of GDP, 71% of jobs) due to the risk of drought and flooding induced by the El Niño phenomenon. This will also increase the price of rice imports from Asian countries and thereby sustain high inflationary pressures. Additionally, jihadist incursions in the southwest of the country will continue to impede private investment and food supply, currently thwarted by the need to bring in food from Burkina Faso using military-escorted convoys.

Arrival of oil revenues and the return of aid

The current account balance improved in 2023. Despite the significant trade deficit, the impact of the trade sanctions imposed by ECOWAS on imports far exceeded that on exports. However, the suspension of international aid (9% of GDP in 2022) in retaliation for the coup weighed on the surplus in the secondary income balance. In 2024, despite the resumption of imports, the increase in export revenues, especially from oil, will allow for a further reduction in the current account deficit. The return of foreign aid will also contribute positively. Nevertheless, the repatriation of increased profits from businesses, particularly those linked to the extractive sector, will weigh on this improvement. This development is, however, subject to the lifting of international sanctions. Despite the growing burden of security and social expenses, the public deficit will narrow due to the rise in oil revenues and the return of international aid, contingent on the lifting of sanctions. The liquidity shortage linked to the freezing of Niger's public assets with the Central Bank of West African States will be resolved after restrictions on government spending in 2023. The end of international sanctions would also allow the fourth disbursement of USD 26.45 million under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) of USD 275 million concluded with the IMF in 2021 for three years and the first disbursement of approximately USD 68 million under the Resilience and Sustainability Facility (RSF) of USD 131.5 million over two years that were both delayed following the coup.

Military coup and increased security risk

On 26 July 2023, military forces from the Presidential guard overthrew democratically elected President Mohamed Bazoum, who came to power in February 2021, citing poor economic and social governance, along with a deterioration in the security situation. The coup leaders, supported by other elements of the armed forces, established the National Council for the Safeguard of the Homeland (CNSP), with Adourahamane Tchiani as its self-proclaimed President. In retaliation, Niger’s bilateral and multilateral partners partially withdrew their assistance and the country was suspended from both ECOWAS and the African Union (AU). Although commercial and financial transactions were suspended, and air and land borders were closed with other ECOWAS member countries, the threat of military intervention did not materialise. However, Mali and Burkina Faso, also suspended from ECOWAS for similar reasons, expressed support for the new Nigerien government and were joined by the Guinean junta, which declared that any intervention against Niger would prompt a military reaction from them. At the immediate request of the new authorities, France, the former colonial power, began withdrawing its troops from the country (1,500 soldiers). Concurrently, following in the footsteps of Mali in 2022, Niger and Burkina Faso also withdrew from the G5 Sahel Joint Force against terrorism, leaving only Chad and Mauritania, likely marking the end of the joint security infrastructure for combating terrorism in the Sahel region that is supported by France. The European Union was also notified of the end of the military partnership in the fight against terrorism, paving the way for closer ties with Russia and the Wagner Group, following in the footsteps of Mali and Burkina Faso. Consequently, the country will have to contend with the jihadist threat, particularly in the Tillabéri region in the southwest under the framework of the New Sahel Alliance formed with Mali and Burkina Faso that pledges mutual assistance in case of external attack. However, the situation could evolve as the ECOWAS meeting on 10 December 2023 has paved the way for a gradual easing of the sanctions imposed on Niger in 2024. This easing will be contingent on the new regime implementing a roadmap and transitional institutions to facilitate a swift return to democratic order. The negative effects of the sanctions on the Nigerien people, including food, medicine, and electricity shortages, will likely prompt the capital Niamey to cooperate with the mediation committee. Nevertheless, the social situation will remain tense due to increased poverty caused by food and energy supply problems. Moreover, the repeal in late November 2023 of a law introduced in 2015 with EU support that criminalised smugglers transporting migrants through the Sahara Desert is likely to strain relations with the West. The repealed law may cause an increase in the number of migrants attempting to reach Europe via Libya and Algeria.

Last updated: December 2023

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