official name of Nigeria is Federal Republic of Nigeria. The capital city is
Abuja. The nigerian government is
federal republic, independent since 1960. The civilian constitution of the
Second Republic, with a US-style president, senate and house of
representatives, was suspended when the military took over on December 31,
population is more than 100 millions of people. More than 50% of them are
Christians, and less than 45% are Muslims. The official language of Negeria is
English, but there also exist a variety of local languages.
coastline, much of it bordered by mangrove swamp, is intersected by numerious creeks; the southeast coast,
dominated by the Niger river delta, is the location of the offshore oil
reserves. Inland lies an area of tropical rain forest nd bush. Savannah and
woodland cover much of the central upland area; the Jos plateau is the
watershed of hundreds of streams and rivers flowing as far as Lake Chad and the
Niger and Benue rivers. The far north, bordering with Sahara, is mainly
savannah. Spectacular highlands line the eastern border with Cameroon. The
highest point is Vogel peak of 2040 meters, and total area is over 924000 sq
elected governments have so far proved unequal to the task of managing this
unruly nation of more than 100 millions people; civilians have ruled for a
total of only 10 years since independence in 1960. The most recent civilian
government, that of President Shehu Shagari, lasted four years before the
military took power again in 1983. The idealistic and rigid General Muhammadu
Buhari was in turn replaced in a bloodless coup two years later by the more
genial and pragmatic General Ibrahim Babangida.
task was made more complex by the collapse of oil prices in early 1986. Oil
earnings, which accounted over 97% of export revenue, were halved to $6.1bn in
just one year.
production started in the late 1950s, rising steadily tp apeak of 2.4m barrels
a day at the start of 1980s. Agriculture was neglected and construction boomed
as the oil money flowed in. Cocoa exports were halved, cotton and groundnut
exports all but ceased and the public developed a taste for new imported foods.
Foreign contractors lined up to build the oil refineries, steel works and
vehicle assembly lines that were to ensure Nigeria’s industrial future.
the mid-1980s Nigeria was saddled with foreign debt of $26bn with few of its
investments in industry or infrastructure starting to pay their way. The
Babangida government lost little time in introducing drastic policy changes.
Inessential and many essential imports were banned, agricultural marketing was
put into private hands, a foreign exchange auction system was introduced,
resulting in a rapid devaluation of the overvalued naira, and an extensive
programme of privatization was announced. The government’s econoic measures
were generally in accordance with IMF recommendations although negotiations
about conditional fund loans had broken down. The realtionship between Nigeria
and its creditors has been a rocky one, but many foreign aid donors have been
sympathetic to its aims and large loans from bodies like the World Bank havve
helped ease the path to reform.
new policies soon started to show results. Cash-crop exports revived, as did
production of traditional food crops. Industry bore the brunt of recession and
the constraints of inports, and was working at barely 30% of capacity in 1988.
For the Nigerian in he street, economic adjustment has meant high unemployment,
rising inflation and a general decline in living standarts.
its economic reforms under way, the Babangida government is talking of a return
to civilian ruke in 1992. To this end, it has set out a complex timetable of
regional and legislatie elections, from which all former politicians have been
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