It is also listed among the "Next Eleven" economies set to become among the biggest in the world.
It has since alternated between democratically-elected civilian governments and military dictatorships, until it achieved a stable democracy in 1999, with the 2011 presidential elections considered the first to be reasonably free and fair.
With approximately 184 million inhabitants, Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa and the seventh most populous country in the world.
Nigeria has one of the largest populations of youth in the world.
The country is viewed as a multinational state, as it is inhabited by over 500 ethnic groups, of which the three largest are the Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba; these ethnic groups speak over 500 different languages, and are identified with wide variety of cultures. Nigeria is divided roughly in half between Christians, who live mostly in the southern part of the country, and Muslims in the northern part.
A minority of the population practise religions indigenous to Nigeria, such as those native to Igbo and Yoruba peoples.
As of 2015, Nigeria is the world's 20th largest economy, worth more than 0 billion and trillion in terms of nominal GDP and purchasing power parity respectively.
It overtook South Africa to become Africa's largest economy in 2014.
Nigeria is a member of the MINT group of countries, which are widely seen as the globe's next "BRIC-like" economies.
, commonly referred to as Nigeria, is a federal constitutional republic in West Africa, bordering Benin in the west, Chad and Cameroon in the east, and Niger in the north.