Country Profiles

Nexus Profile // Niger Basin

The Niger River Basin (NRB) in West and Central Africa covers a total area of 2.13 million km2 and its active basin is home to over 130 million people throughout nine countries: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Mali, Niger, and Nigeria. All 9 riparian states are in the bottom third of the 189 countries according to the UNDP’s Human Development Index (2018), with 5 in the last 15. Most of them face rapid population growth (an estimated annual average of 3.2%) and urbanization in a vulnerable environment characterised by pockets of political instability, insecurity and difficult climatic conditions. The Niger River and its tributaries provide water for drinking, agriculture, industry, energy and transport to the nine riparian countries, making it an invaluable resource which has to be properly managed to overcome the above mentioned challenges and ensure long-term and fair benefit sharing.

Climate and river flow variability, enhanced by climate change, provide elements of uncertainty in planning resource use. A sound integrated and transboundary management is necessary to address these challenges and to promote development in the basin. This pressing issue is highlighted by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) indicators. While progress is being made within the basin, 30% of the population still do not have access to an improved water source, 75% do not have improved sanitation facilities and only 35% have access to electricity.

A water-energy- food security Nexus approach can provide an appropriate paradigm to design policies to holistically attain these development objectives by seeking efficiency of resource use.

Key Nexus Issues in the Niger Basin

The Niger Basin Authority (NBA) has identified key issues to be considered for the sustainable development of the basin. These issues include:

  • interactions between key sectors (i.e. water, energy, agriculture, and environment) such as hydropower development using
  • multi-purpose infrastructure
  • irrigation to increase crop production and food security
  • navigation development to enhance commerce and development and environmental protection; and
  • protection of ecosystems

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Published

December 2018

By

Nexus Regional Dialogue Programme

About the Nexus Country Profiles

The Nexus Country Profiles give an overview of the Nexus-related challenges faced by a country, show the specifics of the water, energy and food/agricultural sectors and summarise the water-energy, water-food and energy-food interrelations. Nexus-relevant aspects of the country’s governance are highlighted and allow for a better understanding of possible entry points for integrated management and policy planning. The profiles culminate in a tri-sectoral Nexus evaluation and food-energy-water security index.

The country profiles are developed in the frame of the  Nexus Dialogue Programme, jointly funded by the European Union and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany, and implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) in cooperation with regional partners. Research for and elaboration of the country profiles is supported by the Institute for Technology and Resource Management in the Tropics and Subtropics (ITT) at the TH Köln – University of Applied Sciences, Germany.

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