The Regions of Niger are subdivided into 36 Departments (French: departements). Before the devolution program on 1999-2005, these Departments were styled arrondissements. Confusingly, the next level up (Regions) had, before 2002-2005 been styled Departments.  As of 2005, Arrondissements remain a proposed subdivision of Departments, though none are used. The decentralisation process, begun in the 1995-1999 period replaced appointed Prefects at Departmental/Arrondisement level with elected councils, first elected in 1999. These were the first local elections held in the history of Niger. Officials elected at Commune level are then selected as representatives at Departmental, Regional, and National level councils and administration. The Ministry of Decentralisation was created to oversee this task, and to create a national consultative council of local officials.
The 36 Departments are broken down into Communes. As of 2006 there were 265 communes, including communes urbaines (Urban Communes: centred in or as subdivisions of cities of over 10000), communes rurales (Rural Communes) centred in cities of under 10,000 and/or sparsely populated areas, and a variety of traditional (clan or tribal) bodies amongst semi-nomadic populations orpostes administratifs (Administrative Posts) for largely uninhabited desert areas or military zones.
The Departments are listed below, by Region.
ca:Departaments del Níger cs:Département (Niger) es:Organización territorial de Níger fr:Subdivisions du Niger it:Dipartimenti del Niger nl:Departementen van Niger pl:Podział administracyjny Nigru pt:Departamentos do Níger ro:Subdiviziunile Nigerului