(self-governing in free association with New Zealand)
[Country Flag of Niue]
Transnational Issues
[Country map of Niue]



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Location: Oceania, island in the South Pacific Ocean, east of Tonga

Geographic coordinates: 19 02 S, 169 52 W

Map references: Oceania

total: 260 sq km
land: 260 sq km
water: 0 sq km

Area—comparative: 1.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: 0 km

Coastline: 64 km

Maritime claims:
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: tropical; modified by southeast trade winds

Terrain: steep limestone cliffs along coast, central plateau

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
highest point: unnamed location near Mutalau settlement 68 m

Natural resources: fish, arable land

Land use:
arable land: 19%
permanent crops: 8%
permanent pastures: 4%
forests and woodland: 19%
other: 50% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: NA sq km

Natural hazards: typhoons

Environment—current issues: traditional methods of burning brush and trees to clear land for agriculture have threatened soil supplies which are not naturally very abundant

Environment—international agreements:
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change
signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea

Geography—note: one of world's largest coral islands


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Population: 1,647 (July 1998 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years: NA
15-64 years: NA
65 years and over: NA

Population growth rate: -3.65% (1998 est.)

Birth rate: NA births/1,000 population

Death rate: NA deaths/1,000 population

Net migration rate: NA migrant(s)/1,000 population

Infant mortality rate: NA deaths/1,000 live births

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: NA
male: NA
female: NA

Total fertility rate: NA children born/woman

noun: Niuean(s)
adjective: Niuean

Ethnic groups: Polynesian (with some 200 Europeans, Samoans, and Tongans)

Religions: Ekalesia Niue (Niuean Church) 75%—a Protestant church closely related to the London Missionary Society, Latter-Day Saints 10%, other 15% (mostly Roman Catholic, Jehovah's Witnesses, Seventh-Day Adventist)

Languages: Polynesian closely related to Tongan and Samoan, English

definition: NA
total population: 95%
male: NA%
female: NA%


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Country name:
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Niue

Data code: NE

Dependency status: self-governing in free association with New Zealand; Niue fully responsible for internal affairs; New Zealand retains responsibility for external affairs

Government type: self-governing parliamentary democracy

National capital: Alofi

Administrative divisions: none; note—there are no first-order administrative divisions as defined by the US Government, but there are 14 villages each with its own village council whose members are elected and serve three-year terms

Independence: on 19 October 1974, Niue became a self-governing parliamentary government in free association with New Zealand

National holiday: Waitangi Day, 6 February (1840) (Treaty of Waitangi established British sovereignty)

Constitution: 19 October 1974 (Niue Constitution Act)

Legal system: English common law

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II of the UK (since 6 February 1952); the queen and New Zealand are represented by New Zealand High Commissioner Warren SEARELL (since NA August 1993)
head of government: Premier Frank Fakaotimanava LUI (since 12 March 1993)
cabinet: Cabinet consists of the premier and three ministers
elections: the queen is a hereditary monarch; premier elected by the Legislative Assembly for a three-year term; election last held 23 February 1996 (next to be held NA March 1999)
election results: Frank Fakaotimanava LUI elected premier; percent of Legislative Assembly vote—NA

Legislative branch: unicameral Legislative Assembly (20 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve three-year terms; six elected from a common roll and 14 are village representatives)
elections: last held 23 February 1996 (next to be held NA March 1999)
election results: percent of vote by party—NA; seats by party—NPP 9, independents 11

Judicial branch: Supreme Court of New Zealand; High Court of Niue

Political parties and leaders: Niue People's Action Party (NPP), Young VIVIAN

International organization participation: ESCAP (associate), Intelsat (nonsignatory user), Sparteca, SPC, SPF, UNESCO, WHO

Diplomatic representation in the US: none (self-governing territory in free association with New Zealand)

Diplomatic representation from the US: none (self-governing territory in free association with New Zealand)

Flag description: yellow with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant; the flag of the UK bears five yellow five-pointed stars—a large one on a blue disk in the center and a smaller one on each arm of the bold red cross


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Economy—overview: The economy is heavily dependent on aid from New Zealand and remittances as Niue has no indigenous export product. Government expenditures regularly exceed revenues, with the shortfall made up by grants from New Zealand; the grants are used to pay wages to public employees. Niue cut government expenditures in 1994-96 by reducing the public service by almost half. The agricultural sector consists mainly of subsistence gardening, although some cash crops are grown for export. Industry consists primarily of small factories to process passion fruit, lime oil, honey, and coconut cream. The sale of postage stamps to foreign collectors is an important source of revenue. The island in recent years has suffered a serious loss of population because of migration of Niueans to New Zealand. A small tourist industry is developing.

GDP: purchasing power parity—$2.4 million (1993 est.)

GDP—real growth rate: NA%

GDP—per capita: purchasing power parity—$1,200 (1993 est.)

GDP—composition by sector:
agriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%

Inflation rate—consumer price index: 5% (1992)

Labor force:
total: 450 (1992 est.)
by occupation: most work on family plantations; paid work exists only in government service, small industry, and the Niue Development Board

Unemployment rate: NA%

revenues: $5.5 million
expenditures: $6.3 million, including capital expenditures of $NA (1985 est.)

Industries: tourism, handicrafts, food processing

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity—capacity: 1,000 kW (1995)

Electricity—production: 3 million kWh (1995)

Electricity—consumption per capita: 1,633 kWh (1995)

Agriculture—products: coconuts, passion fruit, honey, limes, taro, yams, cassava (tapioca), sweet potatoes; pigs, poultry, beef cattle

total value: $117,500 (f.o.b., 1989)
commodities: canned coconut cream, copra, honey, passion fruit products, pawpaw, root crops, limes, footballs, stamps, handicrafts
partners: NZ 89%, Fiji, Cook Islands, Australia

total value: $4.1 million (c.i.f., 1989)
commodities: food, live animals, manufactured goods, machinery, fuels, lubricants, chemicals, drugs
partners: NZ 59%, Fiji 20%, Japan 13%, Samoa, Australia, US

Debt—external: $NA

Economic aid:
recipient: ODA, $5.9 million from NZ (FY95/96)

Currency: 1 New Zealand dollar (NZ$) = 100 cents

Exchange rates: New Zealand dollars (NZ$) per US$1—1.7283 (January 1998), 1.5082 (1997), 1.4543 (1996), 1.5235 (1995), 1.6844 (1994), 1.8495 (1993)

Fiscal year: 1 April—31 March


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Telephones: 276 (1992 est.)

Telephone system:
domestic: single-line telephone system connects all villages on island
international: NA

Radio broadcast stations: AM 1, FM 1, shortwave 0 (1987 est.)

Radios: 1,000

Television broadcast stations: 0
note: there is cable television

Televisions: 312 (1991 est.)


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Railways: 0 km

total: 234 km
paved: 0 km
unpaved: 234 km

Ports and harbors: none; offshore anchorage only

Merchant marine: none

Airports: 1 (1997 est.)

Airports—with paved runways:
total: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (1997 est.)


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Military branches: Police Force

Military—note: defense is the responsibility of New Zealand

Transnational Issues

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Disputes—international: none