Government of Canada

Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada

www.international.gc.ca

Niger

Canada's Commitment

Niger is the second-poorest country in the world. The United Nations Development Programme ranked Niger 186 out of 187 countries on its 2011 human development index. Nearly 43 percent of Niger's 15.9 million people live on less than $1.25 a day. Only 46 percent have access to safe drinking water. About 6.5 percent have electricity. Despite the government's efforts, female genital mutilation is still practiced.

Poverty in Niger is exacerbated by chronic food insecurity, due to irregular and insufficient rain, and a low level of diversification in the economy. In 2010, the country experienced an acute food crisis.

Niger has recently experienced a certain amount of political stability, since adopting a democratic system and the political and institutional reforms that followed. Niger ratified the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights. A civil society encompassing all the economic, social, and cultural aspects of life has since come into being. Following a coup in February 2010, democracy was restored in 2011, when an election was held.

Canada's relationship with Niger goes back to the early 1960s. CIDA has supported projects that increase food security, improve education and advance equality between women and men.

As part of the Government of Canada's Economic Action Plan 2012, CIDA is restructuring and streamlining its operations. By March 2013, all CIDA funding for country-to-country (bilateral) programs in Niger will end and all existing project and contract work will be completed. Niger will continue to remain eligible for support through CIDA's Pan-Africa regional program, as well as through CIDA's Multilateral and global programs (including international humanitarian assistance when needed) and CIDA's Partnerships with Canadians programs.

Accomplishments 2010-2011

Humanitarian assistance

  • Helped reach 7.8 million beneficiaries with food assistance, which contributed to containing the 2010 food crisis
  • Helped treat more than 39,000 patients suffering from acute malnutrition during the 2010 food crisis in the heavily affected regions of Zinder, Magaria and Mirriah

Food security

  • Helped build 60 new foodgrain banks in Tahoua and Keita, and trained local communities, particularly women, to manage them effectively, along with 25 other existing foodgrain banks
  • During the major food crisis of 2010, more than 14,700 families benefited from the sale of 1,000 tonnes of grain at reduced prices and temporary jobs were created in the five communes substantially increasing the income of vulnerable families

Equality between women and men

  • Increased the awareness of more than 50,500 women and 32,000 men about issues related to increasing women's participation and leadership in the four departments of the Dosso region
  • Helped strengthen the leadership capacities of more than 400 potential women leaders
  • Trained more than 20 managers in the Ministry for the Promotion of Women and Child Protection to use analytical and conceptual tools with gender sensitive approaches