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Niue's remoteness, as well as cultural and linguistic differences between its Polynesian inhabitants and those of the rest of the Cook Islands, have caused it to be separately administered. The population of the island continues to drop (from a peak of 5,200 in 1966 to an estimated 1,311 in 2011) with substantial emigration to New Zealand 2,400 km to the southwest.


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Government

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

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

Capital
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

Independence
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)

Constitution
19 October 1974 (Niue Constitution Act)

Legal system
English common law

Suffrage
18 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state
Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Governor General of New Zealand Anand SATYANAND (since 23 August 2006); the UK and New Zealand are represented by New Zealand High Commissioner Mark BLUMSKY (since September 2011)
Head of government
Premier Toke TALAGI (since 18 June 2008)
Cabinet
Cabinet consists of the premier and 3 ministers
Elections
The monarchy is hereditary; premier elected by the Legislative Assembly for a three-year term; election last held on 16 May 2011 (next to be held in 2014)
Election results
Toke TALAGI reelected premier in Legislative Assembly vote; Toke TALAGI - 11, Togia SIONEHOLO - 8

Legislative branch
Unicameral Legislative Assembly (20 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve three-year terms; six elected from a common roll and 14 are village representatives)
Elections
Last held on 7 May 2011 (next to be held in 2014)
Election results
Percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - 20 independents

Judicial branch
Supreme Court of New Zealand; High Court of Niue

Political parties and leaders
Alliance of Independents or AI; Niue People's Action Party or NPP [Young VIVIAN]

Political pressure groups and leaders
NA

International organization participation
ACP, AOSIS, FAO, IFAD, OPCW, PIF, Sparteca, SPC, UNESCO, UPU, WHO, WMO

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 anthem
Name
"Ko e Iki he Lagi" (The Lord in Heaven)
Lyrics/music
Unknown/unknown, prepared by Sioeli FUSIKATA
Note Adopted 1974


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