Niger is a landlocked country of approximately 16 million (World Bank). Niger’s population is growing at a rate of 3.3 percent per year, one of the fastest rates in the world, and its GDP in 2010 was one of the lowest in Africa at US$680 (World Bank).

Poverty remains a widespread problem exacerbated by rapid population growth. Nearly 63 percent of the total population lives below the poverty line, with nearly 34 percent living in extreme poverty (IFAD). These rates are even higher (66 percent and 36 percent, respectively) for rural areas. In recent years, poverty has been exacerbated by domestic political instability, economic inequality and weak infrastructure, extreme weather events, and the global financial downturn.

Agriculture is the main driver of Niger’s economy. An estimated 82 percent of the population relies on farming (WFP). In recent years, Niger has been hard hit with unfavorable agricultural conditions. In 2005, drought and locust invasions prompted a severe food security crisis. Poor harvests in 2010, along with extensive unpredicted flooding, led to another severe food crisis that affected over 3 million people in both rural and urban areas. A poor 2011 harvest resulted in a large cereals deficit, prompting 20 percent of the population to fall into food insecurity again in 2012 (World Bank). As a result of these and past food crises, malnutrition rates in Niger are high. Ten percent of children under five suffer from acute malnutrition, while a total of 44 percent of children suffer from some level of chronic malnutrition (WFP). Life expectancy is low at 44.7 years, and the mortality rate for children under five is 130 per 1,000 (IFAD).

Agricultural Production
Agricultural Production2013201420152016
Rice Production
FAO 2016
73,679 MT89,951 MT92,831 MT30,167 MT
Wheat Production
FAO 2016
5,666 MT1,802 MT8,090 MT8,234 MT
Maize Production
FAO 2016
17,813 MT56,597 MT35,387 MT38,022 MT
Agricultural Exports
Agricultural Exports2013201420152016
Rice Exports
FAO 2016
34,121 MT36,358 MT35,033 MT223,092 MT
Wheat Exports
FAO 2016
0.00 MT MT4.00 MT MT
Maize Exports
FAO 2016
6.00 MT MT MT MT
Soybean Exports
FAO 2016
0.00 MT MT MT MT
Agricultural Imports
Agricultural Imports2010201120122013
Rice Imports
FAO 2013
148,032 MT184,745 MT323,948 MT383,170 MT
Wheat Imports
FAO 2012
480.00 MT7,667 MT175.00 MT135.00 MT
Maize Imports
FAO 2016
50,623 MT16,179 MT76,287 MT60,768 MT
Soybean Imports
FAO 2016
0.00 MT0.00 MT102.00 MT0.00 MT