Nigeria’s economic policy ‘failing’, two in five Nigerian youth unemployed, says UN

job_seekers Nigeria

Although Nigeria witnessed robust economic growth in 2011, it is still enmeshed in poverty.

In what appears an indictment of the President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration, the United Nations, has released a report saying Nigeria’s unemployment rate has increased in the last two years under Mr. Jonathan’s watch, from 21.1 per cent in 2010 to 23.9 per cent.

The report shows that about one in four Nigerians are currently unemployed. Nigeria also has one of the worst youth unemployment rates in sub-Saharan Africa, at 37.7 per cent – which means two in five Nigerian youth are unemployed.

These damning verdicts are contained in a 291-page publication called ‘The African Economic Outlook 2012’ jointly published by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, UNECA; the United Nations Development Population, UNDP; the African Development Bank Group; and the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development.

The publication, launched on Thursday in Addis Ababa, was presented by the Director, Economic Department, NEPAD division of UNECA, Emmanuel Nnadozie.

The publication, which is in its 11th year, however, described Nigeria’s economic growth in 2011 as “robust.”

The robust growth recorded in Nigeria’s economy, according to the publication, was driven mainly by the non-oil sector, and in particular, telecommunications, construction, wholesale/retail trade, hotel and restaurant services, manufacturing, and agriculture.

Policies are failing

The report showed that Mr. Jonathan’s policies, despite leading to a “robust” economic growth, are spreading poverty in the country.

The Nigerian economy has failed to generate decent jobs as poverty is widespread, the publication revealed.

“Poverty is also very high and persistent. Social indicators in health and education remain weak,” Mr. Nnadozie stated in his presentation of the report.

“To mitigate the negative impacts of the global economic crisis, the government pursued an expansionary fiscal policy to maintain growth and social sector spending that led to pressure on consumer prices,” he said.

The publication showed that dilapidated infrastructure particularly in power, road transport and railways; and the overdependence on the oil and gas industry, impede Nigeria’s economy and the country’s absorptive capacity.

The findings of the report are not too far from that of the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics.

The Bureau, in a recent report, said the number of Nigerians living below the poverty level of $2 per day has increased since 2007. Over 100 million Nigerians now live below the poverty line, the Bureau had stated in its own report.

Agric Sector is getting better

The report also showed that in spite of the dominance of the oil sector, agriculture played a significant role in the national economy, accounting for the largest single share of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

“Sustained growth in the agricultural sector is a principal factor in promoting inclusive economic growth, reducing poverty and ensuring the nation’s food security,” Mr. Nnadozie said.

The publication gave a country by country economic performance of 54 African countries and was themed “Promoting Youth Employment”.

Mr. Nnadozie said the Republic of Somalia was exempted from the outlook because of the prevailing security situation in the country.

He, however, said with the current positive political process, Somalia would feature in the 2013 African Economic Outlook.

The central message of the publication is job creation for African youth by African governments.

  • Innocent

    Over to Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, and her boss, Goodluck Jonathan. What’s going on? Where the jobs you said you created? Keep lying to us.

    • NAGODI

      THANKS INNOCENT, THIS THE REAL TEST FOR THE “COORDINATING MINISTER OF THE ECONOMY” AND NOT SOME FANCY FIGURES SHE COOKED UP TO SHOW NIGERIA IS OK WITH $44 BILLION DEBT.

  • nice guy

    Lots of jobs were lost when Sanusi stated his witch hunting policies in the banking sector which was the biggest employer of labour in the country, the ripple effect of this policy is that small businesses that were getting over drafts from banks to run their business died off. Also, with interest rates at 24% SME’s which creates more jobs simply can not germinate.

    • NAGODI

      YET IT STILLS SAT WELL WITH THE ONLY GUY THAT CAN SACK SLS. SO WHAT DO YOU SAY ABOUT SLS’S BOSS? ARE YOU ELEVATING SLS TO THE POSITION OF THE PRESIDENT? DO YOU ADMIT UNCONCIOUSLY THAT SLS IS MORE POWERFUL THAN THE PRESIDENT? BLAME THOSE WHO SHOULD CARRY THE BLAME DONT LET ETHNIC HATRED BLIND YOU, AT THE END OF THIS GOVT TENURE, IT WILL BE THE GEJ PRESIDENCY NOT SLS.

  • Mpitikwelu_na_Ugwu_Awusa

    sanusi presided over the mass sack of hundred of young bankers just to get his pound of flesh. it is easy to destroy than to build.

    • NAGODI

      YET THE CLUELESS PRESIDENT KEPT SLS. IT REALLY GOES TO THE HEART OF NIGERIA’S PROBLEMS THAT PEOPLE LIKE YOU GO TO THE EXTENT OF DENIGRATING THE PRESIDENT AND HIS OFFICE JUST TO SCORE ETHNIC POINTS. HOW WOULD THE WORLD LOOK AT GEJ IF YOU HAVE AN INCOMPETENT CBN GOVERNOR DESTROYING JOBS? WHAT IS GEJ AFRAID OF THAT HE WONT SACK HIM? WHY DIDNT THOSE DISMISSED UNFAIRLY GO TO COURT? IS THE CBN GOVERNOR ABOVE THE LAW OR DO WE HAVE MORONS IN CHARGE OF THE GOVT.?

      • Mpitikwelu_na_Ugwu_Awusa

        sanusi have wrapped himself in islamic flag.

  • Enemona

    over 40% youth unemployment!! wow! that’s crazy. Sitting on a keg of gunpowder.