macrohistory & world report


Location of the island Nieu

The Island of Nieu in the Pacific Ocean

World Factbook as of November 2014: "The economy suffers from the typical Pacific island problems of geographic isolation, few resources, and a small population. 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. Niue has cut government expenditures by reducing the public service by almost half. The agricultural sector consists mainly of subsistence gardening, although some cash crops are grown for export. Industry consists primarily of small factories to process passion fruit, lime oil, honey, and coconut cream. The sale of postage stamps to foreign collectors is an important source of revenue. 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 the termination of all offshore banking licenses. Economic aid from New Zealand in FY08/09 was US$5.7 million. While in the process of rebuilding, Niue has been dependent on foreign aid."


Island in Oceania, 19 degrees south of the equator, between Tonga in the west and the Cook Islands in the east. About 24 by 40 kilometers – 260 square kilometers. Limestone cliffs rather than beaches. High point of 68 meters (223 feet). The largest uplifted coral island in the world. Surrounded by a reef. Tropical and rocky. Large sub-terranean limestone caves, sea chasms and arches,  grottoes, reef pools. An abundance of large game fish. First generation rain forest. Niue means "Behold, a coconut tree!" Capital: Alofi


Chief of state: Elizabeth II (monarch, House of Windsor) since 6 February 1952. Niue (pronounced n-you-eh is an  parliamentary democracy, since 1974  in free association with New Zealand, which is responsible for Niue's external affairs and defense and no rights of control over internal matters.

Estimated per capita GDP
2003: $5,800


Living in an urban area: 39% (2008)
July 2014: 1,190
July 2009: 1,398
July 2007: 1,492
July 2005: 2,166

Density for 2005, 8.3 persons per square kilometer. For Samoa and Tahiti this figure is around 60, for Belgium 339.

Niue has 20,000 of its people living in Auckland, New Zealand. and another 2000 in living in Australia. 

Niue is encouraging tourism. A few flights go to Niue each week. Air Tahiti Nui flies there.


People moving to New Zealand has contributed to the decline.


A single-line telephone system connects all villages on island.

The island has internet users.


Infant mortality estimated for 2001: 29.4 deaths for every 1,000 live births.

Average life expectancy at birth
2001: 70.2 years.

Healthcare is free.

A mobile health team delivers maternal and child health services to the island's numerous villages. All villages are connected by telephone.

Numerous pictures of Niue are available at Google, clicking on Images and writing in Niue.


South Sea islands are occasionally hit by hurricanes – also called typhoons. On Niue, most people prefer to live on the leeward side of the island, sheltered from the tradewinds from the southeast. But hurricanes can come from the northwest, which is what happened in January 2004, causing two deaths a lot of destruction to buildings and food crops and gardens.

Previous such storms hit Niue in 1959, 1960 and 1990.

The January storm, called Heta, also hit Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga and the Cook Islands.

Religion and Ethnicity

About 200 of the inhabitants are of European heritage. A few are from Tonga and Samoa. Evangelism has left the island with about 10 percent (150?) as Mormon and a few Jehovah's Witnesses. Perhaps around 10 percent are Roman Catholic. About 75 percent (1,125?) belong to a Protestant church associated with the London Missionary Society.

Television, Radio and the Internet

The island has one television station, one FM and one AM station. Its internet country code is .nu.

October 16, 2004

Niue's primer is asking New Zealanders to move to Niue and is planning to lease such migrants land on generous terms.

The World Factbook
The Coconet Wireless

Copyright © 2009-2013 by Frank E. Smitha. All rights reserved.