Economic Consequence of Hike in Nigeria’s Unemployment Rates

In 2019, Nigeria’s unemployment rate stood at 23.1 percent of the workforce in the third quarter, up from 18.1 percent of the previous year.

In 2020, Nigeria’s unemployment rate came in at 27.1 percent, the highest on record which the government blamed on the coronavirus pandemic and the fall in global oil price.

Facts however still remain that restive youths promenade the streets of Africa’s most populous nation in search of jobs while trying their acts on nefarious activities when they are bored with job hunting.

It’s a major bane for a Third World country and despite the thousands of jobs the government keeps singing of providing, it still seem like a mere fallacy, there are no jobs yet and joblessness in Nigeria looks static if not increasing every quarter of a new year.

Over the last two decades, the crusade of entrepreneurship has attained a crescendo, it was meant to reroute traffic on the lane of white-collar jobs to that of  blue-collar, skills, self-reliance and independence.

But that hasn’t helped either, the rat race for multinationals, mega-firms, banks, government agencies et al by youths and the “just graduated” lot takes a different form by the day.

According to econometric models from Trading Economics,  Nigeria’s unemployment rate is projected to trend around 32.50 percent this year and 33.00 percent in 2022.

Unemployment statistics from January 2016 to January 2020

Economic Consequence of Unemployment

Here are a few economic downsides of unemployment:

Increases Federal And State Government Borrowing

An economic consequence of unemployment in Nigeria is its potential for increased government borrowing and debt. The high rate of unemployment has affected the tax return, leaving the government to rely on loans from world organizations and countries.

Potential Homelessness In The Country

The economic consequence of unemployment in Nigeria is that it has created potential homelessness for Nigerian citizens. For instance, no income makes it impossible to pay for rent in urban cities like Lagos. The suburbs then suffer overcrowding and invariably higher rates of violent crimes.

Harms Future Prospects Of The Country

This is another economic consequence of unemployment in the country. Most Nigerian citizens, who are unemployed today may likely find it quite difficult to secure suitable jobs in the future – the hysteresis effect.

Lower GDP For The Country’s Economy

Another economic consequence of unemployment in Nigeria is that it depreciates the country’s GDP. When there is a high rate of unemployment, the indication is that the economy would operate below full capacity thus, making the country’s economy inefficient.

This, however, has led to low output as well as low incomes. When the unemployed are not able to buy or pay for services, lower spending, as well as lower output, becomes a cause for worry as is the situation now.

Patsy Nwogu

Reporting on data-driven featured stories and investigations.

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