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Niger vs. Benin

Demographics

NigerBenin
Population23,605,767 (July 2021 est.)13,301,694 (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
Age structure0-14 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.)
0-14 years: 45.56% (male 2,955,396/female 2,906,079)

15-24 years: 20.36% (male 1,300,453/female 1,318,880)

25-54 years: 28.54% (male 1,735,229/female 1,935,839)

55-64 years: 3.15% (male 193,548/female 211,427)

65 years and over: 2.39% (male 140,513/female 167,270) (2020 est.)
Median agetotal: 14.8 years

male: 14.5 years

female: 15.1 years (2020 est.)
total: 17 years

male: 16.4 years

female: 17.6 years (2020 est.)
Population growth rate3.65% (2021 est.)3.36% (2021 est.)
Birth rate47.28 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)41.55 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Death rate10.09 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)8.21 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Net migration rate-0.66 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)0.25 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Sex ratioat 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.)
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

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

15-24 years: 0.99 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 0.9 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 0.92 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.84 male(s)/female

total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 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.)
total: 57.23 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 62.34 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 51.85 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 59.7 years

male: 58.19 years

female: 61.26 years (2021 est.)
total population: 61.82 years

male: 60.02 years

female: 63.71 years (2021 est.)
Total fertility rate6.91 children born/woman (2021 est.)5.47 children born/woman (2021 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate0.2% (2020 est.)0.9% (2020 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Nigerien(s)

adjective: Nigerien
noun: Beninese (singular and plural)

adjective: Beninese
Ethnic groupsHausa 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.)Fon and related 38.4%, Adja and related 15.1%, Yoruba and related 12%, Bariba and related 9.6%, Fulani and related 8.6%, Ottamari and related 6.1%, Yoa-Lokpa and related 4.3%, Dendi and related 2.9%, other 0.9%, foreigner 1.9% (2013 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS31,000 (2020 est.)75,000 (2020 est.)
ReligionsMuslim 99.3%, Christian 0.3%, animist 0.2%, none 0.1% (2012 est.)Muslim 27.7%, Roman Catholic 25.5%, Protestant 13.5% (Celestial 6.7%, Methodist 3.4%, other Protestant 3.4%), Vodoun 11.6%, other Christian 9.5%, other traditional religions 2.6%, other 2.6%, none 5.8% (2013 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths1,100 (2020 est.)2,000 (2020 est.)
LanguagesFrench (official), Hausa, DjermaFrench (official), Fon and Yoruba (most common vernaculars in south), tribal languages (at least six major ones in north)
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 19.1%

male: 27.3%

female: 11% (2015)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 42.4%

male: 54%

female: 31.1% (2018)
Major infectious diseasesdegree 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
degree of risk: very high (2020)

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

vectorborne diseases: dengue fever and malaria

animal contact diseases: rabies

respiratory diseases: meningococcal meningitis
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 6 years

male: 7 years

female: 6 years (2017)
total: 13 years

male: 14 years

female: 11 years (2016)
Education expenditures3.5% of GDP (2018)2.9% of GDP (2018)
Urbanizationurban population: 16.8% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 4.72% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)
urban population: 49% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 3.74% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)
Drinking water sourceimproved: 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.)
improved: urban: 81.2% of population

rural: 72.2% of population

total: 76.4% of population

unimproved: urban: 18.8% of population

rural: 27.8% of population

total: 23.6% of population (2017 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved: 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.)
improved: urban: 58.7% of population

rural: 16% of population

total: 36% of population

unimproved: urban: 41.3% of population

rural: 84% of population

total: 64% of population (2017 est.)
Major cities - population1.336 million NIAMEY (capital) (2021)285,000 PORTO-NOVO (capital) (2018); 1.123 million Abomey-Calavi, 699,000 COTONOU (seat of government) (2021)
Maternal mortality rate509 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)397 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight31.3% (2019)16.8% (2017/18)
Health expenditures7.3% (2018)2.5% (2018)
Physicians density0.04 physicians/1,000 population (2016)0.08 physicians/1,000 population (2018)
Hospital bed density0.4 beds/1,000 population (2017)0.5 beds/1,000 population (2010)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate5.5% (2016)9.6% (2016)
Mother's mean age at first birth20.4 years (2012 est.)

note: median age at first birth among women 25-49
20.5 years (2017/18 est.)

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

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.

Benin has a youthful age structure – almost 65% of the population is under the age of 25 – which is bolstered by high fertility and population growth rates. Benin’s total fertility has been falling over time but remains high, declining from almost 7 children per women in 1990 to 4.8 in 2016. Benin’s low contraceptive use and high unmet need for contraception contribute to the sustained high fertility rate. Although the majority of Beninese women use skilled health care personnel for antenatal care and delivery, the high rate of maternal mortality indicates the need for more access to high quality obstetric care.

Poverty, unemployment, increased living costs, and dwindling resources increasingly drive the Beninese to migrate. An estimated 4.4 million, more than 40%, of Beninese live abroad. Virtually all Beninese emigrants move to West African countries, particularly Nigeria and Cote d’Ivoire. Of the less than 1% of Beninese emigrants who settle in Europe, the vast majority live in France, Benin’s former colonial ruler.

With about 40% of the population living below the poverty line, many desperate parents resort to sending their children to work in wealthy households as domestic servants (a common practice known as vidomegon), mines, quarries, or agriculture domestically or in Nigeria and other neighboring countries, often under brutal conditions. Unlike in other West African countries, where rural people move to the coast, farmers from Benin’s densely populated southern and northwestern regions move to the historically sparsely populated central region to pursue agriculture. Immigrants from West African countries came to Benin in increasing numbers between 1992 and 2002 because of its political stability and porous borders.

Contraceptive prevalence rate11% (2017/18)15.5% (2017/18)
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 109.5

youth dependency ratio: 104.1

elderly dependency ratio: 5.4

potential support ratio: 18.4 (2020 est.)
total dependency ratio: 82.6

youth dependency ratio: 76.6

elderly dependency ratio: 6

potential support ratio: 16.7 (2020 est.)

Source: CIA Factbook