General issues: New Zealand territory 1902-1974, New Zealand associated state 1974-Present
Country name on general issues: Niue
Currency: 1 Pound = 20 Shilling, 1 Shilling (Sileni) = 12 Pence ( Pene) 1902-1967, 1 Dollar = 100 Cents 1967-Present
Population: 3 000 in 1900, 1 190 in 2014
Political history Niue
Niue is located in the central-south Pacific Ocean – for the exact location, please refer to the map of Modern Oceania. The indigenous population is Polynesian. The first European to visit Niue was the British explorer James Cook in 1774. In the late 19th century Niue requested British protection, which was granted in 1900. The protectorate was short lived – Niue was annexed to New Zealand in 1901. Initially administered as part of the Cook Islands, Niue became a separate New Zealand territory in 1903. Having been administered by New Zealand since then, Niue gained self government as a New Zealand associated state in 1974. Thus, Niue has internal self government, while New Zealand is responsible for defense and foreign relations. Nonetheless, Niue has, in recent years, established diplomatic relations with a number of countries independent from New Zealand.
Economic activities include subsistence agriculture with limited exports to New Zealand and Australia and small scale tourism. The population is mainly Polynesian. Many Niueans have moved to New Zealand as the Niueans have New Zealand nationality and New Zealand offers wider perspectives than life on the island.
Postal history Niue
The first stamps were issued for Niue in 1902 – New Zealand stamps overprinted ‘Niue’ and a new face value in the native language. Overprints continued until the first definitives were issued in 1920. This set, and a subsequent set issued in 1927, are of the same design as concurrent issues for other New Zealand possessions in the area – Aitutaki, the Cook Islands and Penrhyn. In 1932, a set was issued with the same designs as a concurrent issue for the Cook Islands – the designation on the set was ‘Cook Islands – Niue’. Further overprints on New Zealand stamps follow, until, in 1950, a first set is issued with designs specific for Niue. As an associated state, Niue has issued significant numbers of stamps for the thematic collectors market.