Niue is an island located in the Pacific Island, approximately 1,500 miles from New Zealand. The island – which is known as “The Rock” or “the Rock of Polynesia” – is approximately 101 square miles. According to population estimates taken in 2016, the island has about 1,624 inhabitants, giving the island a population density of nearly 14 people per square mile. The capital and the largest village of Niue is Alofi, which has an area of less than 18 square miles and a population of around 1,000 people based on the 2014 census.
Since 1974, Niue has been a self-governing state in free association with New Zealand. Since 1994, the independence of the nation has been recognized by the United Nations. However, the country is not a member of the UN. Niuens – or the people of Niue – are considered citizens of New Zealand.
Niue is bilingual, with most people speaking either Niuean or English. Over one-quarter of the population is able to speak both languages. On the island, there are 14 villages. Each village elects its own chairman. Elections are held every three years.
Since 1970, the island’s population has been on the decline. In the 1970s, the population topped 5,000. By 1990, that number dropped to less than half that – just over 2,300 people. The population has continued to drop and currently has a growth rate of -0.03%.
The majority ethnic group on the island is Niuean, with this group making up about 67% of the total population. About 13% of the population is at least part Niuean. The remaining 20% is made up of Europeans, Asians, and Pacific Islanders. The major religion in Niue is Ekalesia Niue, which is a Protestant church. About 67% of the population follows this religion.