More than 83 percent of the nominal Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for 2010, which translates to about N24.3 trillion out of a total N29.11 trillion, was spent by Nigerians on food and non-food items, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has said.
A report on the country’s consumption pattern for 2009 and 2010 by the statistics bureau shows that food bill by Nigerians for the period under review accounted for about 64.7 per cent of the total household expenses, while non-food items took the balance of about 35.3 per cent.
The NBS report showed that tubers and plantain constituted the staple food of most Nigerian homes as both food items accounted for the largest proportion of household food expenditure of 14.6 percent of the total household bills, followed by rent, vegetables, cereals and beans & peas, each taking up 12.1 per cent, 9.9 per cent, 6.7per cent, and 6.2 per cent respectively.
Further analysis of the expenditure patterns as they relate to food showed that total cereals, including maize, rice and other cereals categories, as well as tubers and plantain, accounted for a combined 46.7 per cent of total household expenditure on food and 30.2 per cent of total household expenditure.
The NBS stated that household expenditure on non-food items were mostly on rent, clothing and footwear and ‘other services’ (which includes information technology and communication equipment as well as things like insurance, domestic help, and so on), and fuel and light, each representing 34.3 per cent, 13.5 per cent, 12.7 per cent and 12.5 per cent respectively of total non-food expenditure and 12.1 per cent, 4.79 per cent, 4.5 per cent and 4.43 per cent of total household expenditure respectively.
“Total expenditure in urban areas in 2009/2010 stood at N10.621,489,661,829.40, relative to N13, 632,180,465,929.50 in the rural areas,” the report said. “The higher rate of expenditure in the rural areas as a total relative to the urban areas is largely due to the fact that this report is constrained by relying on the latest urban-rural classification of the National Population Commission, which was published in 1991 and gives a 30/70 split between urban and rural areas.
Given the constraints to the country’s urban/rural split, the report said total expenditure on food in urban areas stood at N5.9trillion in 2009/2010, while that of the rural areas was N9.81trillion.
“The urban sector spent a higher proportion on rent, which took up 16.2 per cent of its total expenditure, the rural sector spent most of its total expenditure, about 16.0 per cent, on tubers and plantain”, it added.