Burkina Faso vs. Niger


Burkina FasoNiger
Population21,382,659 (July 2021 est.)

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
23,605,767 (July 2021 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 43.58% (male 4,606,350/female 4,473,951)

15-24 years: 20.33% (male 2,121,012/female 2,114,213)

25-54 years: 29.36% (male 2,850,621/female 3,265,926)

55-64 years: 3.57% (male 321,417/female 423,016)

65 years and over: 3.16% (male 284,838/female 374,057) (2020 est.)
0-14 years: 50.58% (male 5,805,102/female 5,713,815)

15-24 years: 19.99% (male 2,246,670/female 2,306,285)

25-54 years: 23.57% (male 2,582,123/female 2,784,464)

55-64 years: 3.17% (male 357,832/female 364,774)

65 years and over: 2.68% (male 293,430/female 317,866) (2020 est.)
Median agetotal: 17.9 years

male: 17 years

female: 18.7 years (2020 est.)
total: 14.8 years

male: 14.5 years

female: 15.1 years (2020 est.)
Population growth rate2.58% (2021 est.)3.65% (2021 est.)
Birth rate34.34 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)47.28 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Death rate7.92 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)10.09 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Net migration rate-0.62 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)-0.66 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.03 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.03 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 0.87 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 0.76 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.76 male(s)/female

total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.02 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 0.97 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 0.93 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.92 male(s)/female

total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 50.71 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 55.05 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 46.24 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)
total: 68.12 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 73.02 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 63.06 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 63.06 years

male: 61.28 years

female: 64.89 years (2021 est.)
total population: 59.7 years

male: 58.19 years

female: 61.26 years (2021 est.)
Total fertility rate4.39 children born/woman (2021 est.)6.91 children born/woman (2021 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate0.7% (2020 est.)0.2% (2020 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Burkinabe (singular and plural)

adjective: Burkinabe
noun: Nigerien(s)

adjective: Nigerien
Ethnic groupsMossi 52%, Fulani 8.4%, Gurma 7%, Bobo 4.9%, Gurunsi 4.6%, Senufo 4.5%, Bissa 3.7%, Lobi 2.4%, Dagara 2.4%, Tuareg/Bella 1.9%, Dioula 0.8%, unspecified/no answer 0.3%, other 7.2% (2010 est.)Hausa 53.1%, Zarma/Songhai 21.2%, Tuareg 11%, Fulani (Peuhl) 6.5%, Kanuri 5.9%, Gurma 0.8%, Arab 0.4%, Tubu 0.4%, other/unavailable 0.9% (2006 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS97,000 (2020 est.)31,000 (2020 est.)
ReligionsMuslim 63.2%, Roman Catholic 24.6%, Protestant 6.9%, traditional/animist 4.2%, none 0.7%, unspecified 0.4% (2017-18 est.)Muslim 99.3%, Christian 0.3%, animist 0.2%, none 0.1% (2012 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths3,300 (2020 est.)1,100 (2020 est.)
LanguagesFrench (official), native African languages belonging to Sudanic family spoken by 90% of the populationFrench (official), Hausa, Djerma
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 41.2%

male: 50.1%

female: 32.7% (2018)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 19.1%

male: 27.3%

female: 11% (2015)
Major infectious diseasesdegree of risk: very high (2020)

food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever

vectorborne diseases: dengue fever and malaria

water contact diseases: schistosomiasis

animal contact diseases: rabies

respiratory diseases: meningococcal meningitis
degree of risk: very high (2020)

food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever

vectorborne diseases: malaria and dengue fever

water contact diseases: schistosomiasis

animal contact diseases: rabies

respiratory diseases: meningococcal meningitis
Food insecuritysevere localized food insecurity: due to civil insecurity in the north - according to the latest analysis, about 2.87 million people are estimated to need humanitarian assistance in the June-August 2021; in Centre-Nord and Sahel regions, insecurity continues to cause population displacements, further deteriorating the food security situation (2021)widespread lack of access: due to civil conflict - according to the latest analysis, about 2.3 million people are assessed to need humanitarian assistance in the June-August 2021 period due to the increase in security incidents which have resulted in widespread disruption of agricultural and marketing activities, diminishing livelihood opportunities for households (2021)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 9 years

male: 9 years

female: 9 years (2019)
total: 6 years

male: 7 years

female: 6 years (2017)
Education expenditures5.4% of GDP (2018)3.5% of GDP (2018)
Urbanizationurban population: 31.2% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 4.75% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)
urban population: 16.8% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 4.72% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)
Drinking water sourceimproved: urban: 94.9% of population

rural: 67.9% of population

total: 75.6% of population

unimproved: urban: 4.5% of population

rural: 32.1% of population

total: 24.4% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 95.7% of population

rural: 59.2% of population

total: 65.2% of population

unimproved: urban: 4.3% of population

rural: 40.8% of population

total: 34.8% of population (2017 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved: urban: 88.2% of population

rural: 30.2% of population

total: 46.9% of population

unimproved: urban: 11.8% of population

rural: 69.8% of population

total: 53.1% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 76.6% of population

rural: 12.9% of population

total: 23.3% of population

unimproved: urban: 23.4% of population

rural: 87.1% of population

total: 76.7% of population (2017 est.)
Major cities - population2.915 million OUAGADOUGOU (capital), 1.020 million Bobo-Dioulasso (2021)1.336 million NIAMEY (capital) (2021)
Maternal mortality rate320 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)509 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight16.4% (2019)31.3% (2019)
Health expenditures5.6% (2018)7.3% (2018)
Physicians density0.09 physicians/1,000 population (2017)0.04 physicians/1,000 population (2016)
Hospital bed density0.4 beds/1,000 population (2010)0.4 beds/1,000 population (2017)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate5.6% (2016)5.5% (2016)
Mother's mean age at first birth19.4 years (2010 est.)

note: median age at first birth among women 25-29
20.4 years (2012 est.)

note: median age at first birth among women 25-49
Demographic profile

Burkina Faso has a young age structure - the result of declining mortality combined with steady high fertility - and continues to experience rapid population growth, which is putting increasing pressure on the country's limited arable land. More than 65% of the population is under the age of 25, and the population is growing at 3% annually. Mortality rates, especially those of infants and children, have decreased because of improved health care, hygiene, and sanitation, but women continue to have an average of almost 6 children. Even if fertility were substantially reduced, today's large cohort entering their reproductive years would sustain high population growth for the foreseeable future. Only about a third of the population is literate and unemployment is widespread, dampening the economic prospects of Burkina Faso's large working-age population.

Migration has traditionally been a way of life for Burkinabe, with seasonal migration being replaced by stints of up to two years abroad. Cote d'Ivoire remains the top destination, although it has experienced periods of internal conflict. Under French colonization, Burkina Faso became a main labor source for agricultural and factory work in Cote d'Ivoire. Burkinabe also migrated to Ghana, Mali, and Senegal for work between the world wars. Burkina Faso attracts migrants from Cote d'Ivoire, Ghana, and Mali, who often share common ethnic backgrounds with the Burkinabe. Despite its food shortages and high poverty rate, Burkina Faso has become a destination for refugees in recent years and hosts about 33,500 Malians as of May 2017.


Niger has the highest total fertility rate (TFR) of any country in the world, averaging close to 7 children per woman in 2016. A slight decline in fertility over the last few decades has stalled. This leveling off of the high fertility rate is in large part a product of the continued desire for large families. In Niger, the TFR is lower than the desired fertility rate, which makes it unlikely that contraceptive use will increase. The high TFR sustains rapid population growth and a large youth population - almost 70% of the populace is under the age of 25. Gender inequality, including a lack of educational opportunities for women and early marriage and childbirth, also contributes to high population growth.

Because of large family sizes, children are inheriting smaller and smaller parcels of land. The dependence of most Nigeriens on subsistence farming on increasingly small landholdings, coupled with declining rainfall and the resultant shrinkage of arable land, are all preventing food production from keeping up with population growth.

For more than half a century, Niger's lack of economic development has led to steady net outmigration. In the 1960s, Nigeriens mainly migrated to coastal West African countries to work on a seasonal basis. Some headed to Libya and Algeria in the 1970s to work in the booming oil industry until its decline in the 1980s. Since the 1990s, the principal destinations for Nigerien labor migrants have been West African countries, especially Burkina Faso and Cote d'Ivoire, while emigration to Europe and North America has remained modest. During the same period, Niger's desert trade route town Agadez became a hub for West African and other Sub-Saharan migrants crossing the Sahara to North Africa and sometimes onward to Europe.

More than 60,000 Malian refugees have fled to Niger since violence between Malian government troops and armed rebels began in early 2012. Ongoing attacks by the Boko Haram Islamist insurgency, dating to 2013 in northern Nigeria and February 2015 in southeastern Niger, have pushed tens of thousands of Nigerian refugees and Nigerien returnees across the border to Niger and to displace thousands of locals in Niger's already impoverished Diffa region.

Contraceptive prevalence rate30.1% (2020)11% (2017/18)
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 87.9

youth dependency ratio: 83.4

elderly dependency ratio: 4.5

potential support ratio: 22.1 (2020 est.)
total dependency ratio: 109.5

youth dependency ratio: 104.1

elderly dependency ratio: 5.4

potential support ratio: 18.4 (2020 est.)

Source: CIA Factbook