Situation in Niger After Military Coup
On July 26, Niger's presidential guard detained President Mohamed Bazoum. The guard's commander, Gen. Abdourahmane Tchiani, proclaimed himself the country's new leader.

Niger Military Leaders Announce 40% Budget Cuts Due to Sanctions

© AP Photo / Sam MednickNigerien national guardsmen sit outside the customs offices in Niamey, Niger, Monday, Aug. 21, 2023.
Nigerien national guardsmen sit outside the customs offices in Niamey, Niger, Monday, Aug. 21, 2023.  - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 08.10.2023
Niger is currently facing economic and financial sanctions imposed by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on July 30 in response to the military coup that removed elected President Mohamed Bazoum from power four days prior. Many Western nations have denounced the takeover and consequently blocked development aid.
The military authorities that seized power in Niger through a coup in late July have declared a significant reduction in the 2023 national budget due to multiple international sanctions that have hit the aid-reliant economy.

Since July 26, "Niger has faced heavy sanctions imposed by international and regional organizations. These sanctions expose the country to a significant drop in both external and internal revenues," the authorities said in a press release read on public television on October 6, adding: "This state of affairs makes it necessary to revise the 2023 budget forecasts."

This year's budget, originally projected as $5.3 billion (3.29 trillion CFA francs), has been reduced to $3.2 billion (1.98 trillion CFA francs), according to the statement, which did not specify where the cuts would be made.
A gas pump stands in Arlit, the last major settlement in Niger's Tenere desert region of the south central Sahara on Thursday, May 31, 2018. - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 04.10.2023
Situation in Niger After Military Coup
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On July 26, members of the presidential guard detained President Mohamed Bazoum and established a transitional government. The coup garnered condemnation from the regional bloc ECOWAS, the European Union, and the United States, which imposed sanctions, froze assets, or halted aid in response to the takeover in Niger.

The trade blockade has resulted in increased costs for food and an insufficient supply of critical items, such as life-saving medication. According to media reports, this has not appeared to diminish the leadership's domestic support, as many were discontent with the difficulties and perceived corruption during the Bazoum regime.

The country's Prime Minister Ali Mahaman Lamine Zeine, who was appointed by the military, announced the development of an austerity program that will prioritize spending on security and the payment of civil servants' salaries. In light of the sanctions, Niger aims to rely on its internal financial resources and is seeking out allies to improve the economic and humanitarian situation in the country.
Located on the southern edge of the Sahara Desert, the country is the world's seventh-largest producer of uranium, a radioactive metal commonly used for nuclear energy and cancer treatment. The country faces significant economic challenges due to widespread poverty and ongoing insecurity caused by violent extremist organizations.
The West African nation heavily relies on foreign aid, and its projected budget for this year anticipated about 40% of funding from international partners.