Nigeria - Country Guide for Expats

Capital City

Abuja

Currency

Naira

1 USD =365 NGN

1 INR = 5.0484 NGN

President

Muhammadu Buhari

Official language

Hausa, Igbo, Yoruba

Government

Federal presidential constitutional republic

Population

204,630,242

Time Difference to India

4:30 hours behind India









Capital City- 

The national capital is Abuja, in the Federal Capital Territory, which was created by in 1976. Lagos, the former capital, retains its standing as the country’s leading commercial and industrial city. Abuja was chosen for Nigeria’s new capital because of its central location, easy accessibility, salubrious climate, and low population density and the availability of land for future expansion. It was the first planned city to be built in Nigeria. Abuja lies at 1,180 feet (360 meters) above sea level and has a cooler climate and less humidity than is found in Lagos.

Cultural and Social Environment: 

Nigeria’s vibrant popular culture reflects great changes in inherited traditions and adaptations of imported ones. Establishments serving alcoholic beverages are found everywhere except where Islamic laws prohibit them. Hotels and nightclubs are part of the landscape of the larger cities. Movie theatres, showing mostly Indian and American films, are popular among the urban middle- and low-income groups. Radio, television, and other forms of home entertainment (e.g., recorded music and movies) have also grown in popularity, though their use is dependent on the availability of electricity. 

Nigeria has a rich artistic heritage, including both traditional and contemporary art forms. From the naturalistic statues produced at Ife to the bronzes made for the king of Benin, Nigerian artists have crafted art that is world famous. Music and dance are integral to Nigerian culture, and each ethnic group has its own specialties. Traditional instruments include various types of flutes, trumpets, musical bows, xylophones, and wooden clappers, as well as many varieties of drums.

 Educational Facilities: 

Many international school options are in Nigeria's major urban centers, namely the capital city of Abuja and the commercial capital of Lagos. As expected, rural areas are unable to support the same type of provision; expat parents living far from a large city may want to consider homeschooling or sending their child to a boarding school. Most international school curricula in Nigeria follow British, American or International Baccalaureate standards. The quality of education tends to be high, Many schools are equipped with state-of-the-art facilities and offer a healthy choice of extra-curricular activities. The school year in Nigeria runs from January to December and is divided into three semesters. The school day in Nigeria runs roughly between 8am and 3pm.

Medical Facilities: 

Health facilities in the country are limited and are below Western standards. Public healthcare is underfunded while private healthcare are adequate for routine treatments and check-ups. Expats are advised to secure health insurance that can cover or reimburse medical treatments including medical evacuation. Malaria, HIV and tuberculosis are prevailing problems in the country. Foreigners are urged to get precautionary vaccinations, including for the Hepatitis strains, typhoid, rubella and meningitis.

Major Industries: 

The Nigerian economy is one of the largest in Africa initially, primarily on the petroleum industry. A series of world oil price increases from 1973 produced rapid economic growth in transportation, construction, manufacturing, and government services. This led to a great influx of rural people into the larger urban centres, agricultural production stagnated to such an extent that cash crops such as palm oil, peanuts (groundnuts), and cotton were no longer significant export commodities.  The federal government has established such capital-intensive industries as steel mills, pulp and paper mills, petrochemical plants, and an aluminum smelter. In the past, large-scale manufacturing—dominated by the production of textiles, tobacco, beverages, and cement—was controlled by foreign investors.


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