Niue's remoteness, as well as cultural and linguistic differences between its Polynesian inhabitants and those of the adjacent Cook Islands, has caused it to be separately administered by New Zealand. The population of the island continues to drop (from a peak of 5,200 in 1966 to an estimated 1,190 in 2014) with substantial emigration to New Zealand 2,400 km to the southwest.



Oceania, island in the South Pacific Ocean, east of Tonga

Geographic coordinates

19 02 S, 169 52 W

Map references



total: 260 sq km
land: 260 sq km
water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative

1.5 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries

0 km


64 km

Maritime claims

territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm


tropical; modified by southeast trade winds


steep limestone cliffs along coast, central plateau


mean elevation: NA
elevation extremes: lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
highest point: unnamed elevation near Mutalau settlement 68 m

Natural resources

fish, arable land

Land use

agricultural land: 19.1%
arable land 3.8%; permanent crops 11.5%; permanent pasture 3.8%
forest: 71.2%
other: 9.7% (2011 est.)

Irrigated land

0 sq km (2012)

Natural hazards


Environment - current issues

increasing attention to conservationist practices to counter loss of soil fertility from traditional slash and burn agriculture

Environment - international agreements

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection

Geography - note

one of world's largest coral islands

People and Society

Ethnic groups

Niuen 66.5%, part-Niuen 13.4%, non-Niuen 20.1% (includes 12% European and Asian and 8% Pacific Islanders) (2011 est.)


1,190 (July 2014 est.)


noun: Niuean(s)
adjective: Niuean


Niuean (official) 46% (a Polynesian language closely related to Tongan and Samoan), Niuean and English 32%, English (official) 11%, Niuean and others 5%, other 6% (2011 est.)


Ekalesia Niue (Congregational Christian Church of Niue - a Protestant church founded by missionaries from the London Missionary Society) 67%, other Protestant 3% (includes Seventh Day Adventist 1%, Presbyterian 1%, and Methodist 1%), Mormon 10%, Roman Catholic 10%, Jehovah's Witnesses 2%, other 6%, none 2% (2011 est.)

Population growth rate

-0.03% (2014 est.)


urban population: 42.5% of total population (2015)
rate of urbanization: -0.94% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)

Major urban areas - population

ALOFI (capital) 1,000 (2014)

Sex ratio


Infant mortality rate

total: NA
male: NA
female: NA

Total fertility rate


Life expectancy at birth

total population: NA
male: NA
female: NA

Health expenditures

7.4% of GDP (2014)

Physicians density

3 physicians/1,000 population (2008)

Drinking water source

urban: 98.4% of population
rural: 98.6% of population
total: 98.5% of population
urban: 1.6% of population
rural: 1.4% of population
total: 1.5% of population (2015 est.)

Sanitation facility access

urban: 100% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 100% of population
urban: 0% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2015 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate


HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS


HIV/AIDS - deaths


Obesity - adult prevalence rate

42.5% (2014)

Education expenditures



Country name

conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Niue
note: pronunciation falls between nyu-way and new-way, but not like new-wee
former: Savage Island
etymology: the origin of the name is obscure; in Niuean, the word supposedly translates as "behold the coconut"

Dependency status

self-governing in free association with New Zealand since 1974; Niue fully responsible for internal affairs; New Zealand retains responsibility for external affairs and defense; however, these responsibilities confer no rights of control and are only exercised at the request of the Government of Niue

Government type

self-governing parliamentary democracy (Fouo Ekepule) in free association with New Zealand


name: Alofi
geographic coordinates: 19 01 S, 169 55 W
time difference: UTC-11 (6 hours behind Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions

none; note - there are no first-order administrative divisions as defined by the US Government, but there are 14 villages at the second order


19 October 1974 (Niue became a self-governing parliamentary government in free association with New Zealand)

National holiday

Waitangi Day (Treaty of Waitangi established British sovereignty over New Zealand), 6 February (1840)


several previous (New Zealand colonial statutes); latest 19 October 1974 (Niue Constitution Act 1974); amended 1992, 2007 (2016)

Legal system

English common law


18 years of age; universal

Executive branch

chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Governor General of New Zealand Lt. Gen. Sir Jerry MATEPARAE (since 31 August 2011); the UK and New Zealand are represented by New Zealand High Commissioner Ross ARDEN (since February 2014)
head of government: Premier Toke TALAGI (since 18 June 2008)
cabinet: Cabinet chosen by the premier
elections/appointments: the monarchy is hereditary; premier indirectly elected by the Legislative Assembly for a 3-year term; election last held on 24 April 2014 (next to be held in 2017)
election results: Toke TALAGI reelected premier; Legislative Assembly vote - Toke TALAGI (independent) 12, Stanley KALAUNI 8

Legislative branch

description: unicameral Assembly or Fono Ekepule (20 seats; 14 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote and 6 directly elected from the National Register or "common roll" by majority vote; members serve 3-year terms)
elections: last held on 12 April 2014 (next to be held in 2017)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - 20 independents

Judicial branch

highest resident court(s): Court of Appeal (consists of the chief justice and up to 3 judges); note - the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (in London) is the final appeal court beyond the Niue Court of Appeal
judge selection and term of office: Niue chief justice appointed by the governor-general on the advice of the Cabinet and tendered by the premier; other judges appointed by the governor-general on the advice of the Cabinet and tendered by the chief justice and the minister of justice; judges serve until age 68
subordinate courts: High Court
note: Niue is a participant in the Pacific Judicial Development Program, which is designed to build governance and the rule of law in 15 Pacific island countries

Political parties and leaders

Alliance of Independents or AI
Niue People's Action Party or NPP [Young VIVIAN]

Political pressure groups and leaders


International organization participation


Diplomatic representation in the US

none (self-governing territory in free association with New Zealand)

Diplomatic representation from the US

none (self-governing territory in free association with New Zealand)

Flag description

yellow with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant; the flag of the UK bears five yellow five-pointed stars - a large star on a blue disk in the center and a smaller star on each arm of the bold red cross; the larger star stands for Niue, the smaller stars recall the Southern Cross constellation on the New Zealand flag and symbolize links with that country; yellow represents the bright sunshine of Niue and the warmth and friendship between Niue and New Zealand

National symbol(s)

yellow, five-pointed star; national color: yellow

National anthem

name: "Ko e Iki he Lagi" (The Lord in Heaven)
lyrics/music: unknown/unknown, prepared by Sioeli FUSIKATA
note: adopted 1974


Population below poverty line


Economy - overview

The economy suffers from the typical Pacific island problems of geographic isolation, few resources, and a small population. The agricultural sector consists mainly of subsistence gardening, although some cash crops are grown for export. Industry consists

Government expenditures regularly exceed revenues, and the shortfall is made up by critically needed grants from New Zealand that are used to pay wages to public employees. Economic aid allocation from New Zealand in FY13/14 was US$10.1 million. Niue has

The island in recent years has suffered a serious loss of population because of emigration to New Zealand. Efforts to increase GDP include the promotion of tourism and financial services, although the International Banking Repeal Act of 2002 resulted in t

GDP (purchasing power parity)

$10.01 million (2003 est.)

GDP (official exchange rate)

$10.01 million (2003)

GDP - real growth rate

6.2% (2003 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP)

$5,800 (2003 est.)

GDP - composition, by sector of origin

agriculture: 23.5%
industry: 26.9%
services: 49.5% (2003)

Agriculture - products

coconuts, passion fruit, honey, limes, taro, yams, cassava (manioc, tapioca), sweet potatoes; pigs, poultry, beef cattle


handicrafts, food processing

Industrial production growth rate


Labor force

663 (2001)

Labor force - by occupation

note: most work on family plantations; paid work exists only in government service, small industry, and the Niue Development Board

Unemployment rate

12% (2001)

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%


revenues: $15.07 million
expenditures: $16.33 million (FY04/05)

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)

-12.6% of GDP (FY04/05)

Fiscal year

1 April - 31 March

Inflation rate (consumer prices)

4% (2005)


$201,400 (2004 est.)

Exports - commodities

canned coconut cream, copra, honey, vanilla, passion fruit products, pawpaws, root crops, limes, footballs, stamps, handicrafts

Exports - partners

Germany 25%, Belgium 11%, United Kingdom 8%, France 8%, Italy 4%, United States 4% (2014)


$9.038 million (2004 est.)

Imports - commodities

food, live animals, manufactured goods, machinery, fuels, lubricants, chemicals, drugs

Imports - partners

Germany 16%, Belgium 10%, China 9%, United States 7%, United Kingdom 7%, Russia 5%, France 4%, Norway 4% (2014)

Debt - external

$418,000 (2002 est.)

Exchange rates

New Zealand dollars (NZD) per US dollar -
1.441 (2016 est.)
1.4279 (2015 est.)
1.2039 (2014 est.)
1.2039 (2013 est.)
1.23 (2012 est.)


Electricity - production

4 million kWh (2014 est.)

Electricity - consumption

3.72 million kWh (2014 est.)

Electricity - exports

0 kWh (2013 est.)

Electricity - imports

0 kWh (2013 est.)

Electricity - installed generating capacity

1,000 kW (2014 est.)

Electricity - from fossil fuels

100% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)

Electricity - from nuclear fuels

0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)

Electricity - from hydroelectric plants

0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)

Electricity - from other renewable sources

0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)

Crude oil - production

0 bbl/day (2015 est.)

Crude oil - exports

0 bbl/day (2013 est.)

Crude oil - imports

0 bbl/day (2013 est.)

Crude oil - proved reserves

0 bbl (1 January 2016 es)

Refined petroleum products - production

0 bbl/day (2013 est.)

Refined petroleum products - consumption

60 bbl/day (2014 est.)

Refined petroleum products - exports

0 bbl/day (2013 est.)

Refined petroleum products - imports

64.25 bbl/day (2013 est.)

Natural gas - production

0 cu m (2013 est.)

Natural gas - consumption

0 cu m (2013 est.)

Natural gas - exports

0 cu m (2013 est.)

Natural gas - imports

0 cu m (2013 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves

0 cu m (1 January 2014 es)

Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy

3,520 Mt (2012 est.)


Telephone system

domestic: single-line (fixed line) telephone system connects all villages (and virtually all households) on island
international: country code - 683 (2015)

Broadcast media

1 government-owned TV station with many of the programs supplied by Television New Zealand; 1 government-owned radio station broadcasting in AM and FM (2009)

Internet country code


Internet users

total: 1,090
percent of population: 91.6% (July 2015 est.)



1 (2013)

Airports - with paved runways

total: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2012)

Airports - with unpaved runways

total: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2013)


total: 120 km
paved: 120 km (2011)

Ports and terminals

major seaport(s): Alofi


Military branches

no regular indigenous military forces; Police Force

Military - note

defense is the responsibility of New Zealand

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international