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Nigeria’s Population now 201 million amidst high unemployment

Nigeria’s population has risen to 201 million in 2019. This was revealed in the latest State of World Population Report released by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

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Nigeria's total Population now 201m amidst high unemployment rate

Nigeria’s population has risen to 201 million in 2019. This was revealed in the latest State of World Population Report released by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

According to the UNFPA report, Nigeria’s population grew at an annual average growth rate of 2.6 percent in the last ten years. Between 1969 and 2019, Nigeria’s population grew by 267.4 percent. In 1969, Nigeria’s population was estimated at 54.7m people, while it has now increased to 201m in 2019.

Nigeria’s working population takes the highest share: According to UNFPA, Nigerians within the age group of 15-64years takes the highest proportion by age category, claiming about 54 percent of the total population. This age group represents Nigeria’s working population.

The country’s population is young: Also, the report further shows that Nigerians within the age group of 0-14 years rank second, comprising 32 percent of the country’s population, while Nigerians withing age group 10-24 years come third, constituting 32 percent of Nigeria’s population. Lastly, the least population of Nigerians fall within the age group of 65 above, comprising just 3% of Nigeria’s population.

What does this mean? This suggests that Nigeria has a very high prospect for economic growth, only if the country can harness its growth potentials in having the highest population in the working age category. It further stresses why unemployment is at such a high rate in the country.

Total fertility rate per woman declines: According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), total fertility rate is the average number of children a woman would have if she survives all her childbearing (or reproductive) years. Earlier in 2015, WHO stated that  Africa remains the region with the highest fertility at 4.7 children per woman, while Europe has the lowest fertility of 1.6 children per woman.

According to the UNFPA data, the total fertility rate in Nigeria has been on the fall since 1969. Specifically, the total fertility rate per woman was 6.4, while it dropped to 6.3 in 1994 and currently declined to 5.3. This is still high when compared to Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean that reportedly have a total fertility of 2.2 children per woman.

Basically, whenever a country’s rate drops below approximately 2.1, then populations is expected to eventually start to shrink.

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Life expectancy fared better but Nigeria ranks 178th: The UNFPA report shows that life expectancy in Nigeria fared better between 1969 and 2019. In 1969, total life expectancy was 41 years, while it currently stands at 55 years in 2019.

However, according to WHO data, Nigeria ranks 178th in the global world ranking of life expectancy, with male life expectancy being 54.7 years while the female stays at 55.7. Nigeria’s life expectancy is quite low when compared to the 80 years for developed countries.

[Also Read: Unemployment data reveals 20.9m Nigerians are unemployed]

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Is Nigeria’s rising population a curse?: Nigeria’s estimated population of 201 million people comes at a time when the unemployment data is generating a lot of rows amongst policymakers and analysts alike.

According to the States’ Unemployment Data recently released by the National Bureau of Statistics20.9 million Nigerians were unemployed as at third quarter of 2018. The unemployment data further shows that the South Southern states of the country recorded the highest unemployment rates in the country, despite being some of the richest states in the country in terms of oil revenues and internally generated funds.

Rising population is not a curse in its sense, because it is still one of the biggest growth opportunities for any economy. Essentially, when fertility rates decline over a sustained period of time, the proportion of the working age population (i.e. over 15) grows relative to the economically dependent youth population.

This change in age composition creates a window of opportunity during which a country can potentially raise its level of savings and investment—a phenomenon now known as the ‘demographic dividend’.

Also, population growth increases density and, together with rural-urban drift, creates higher urban agglomeration. In essence, the large urban centers which allow for innovation and increased economies of scale lead to sustainable growth.

The downsides: However, rising population without a growing economy and development may have damning consequences on the economy. For instance, using the 2019 global population metrics as an example, Nigeria is ranked 158th globally in terms of GDP per capita of $2366. This does not look good for the economy, because GDP per capita is what measures the productivity of citizens per head.

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Also, surging unemployment rates can equally lead to several social vices among the highest population age group in Nigeria, who have no jobs to earn means for livelihood. Hence, the multiplier effects of rising population amidst high unemployment in an economy cannot be overemphasised.

Samuel is an Analyst with over 5 years experience. Connect with him via his twitter handle

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    Business

    Digital Switch Over: Broadcasting code amendment to curb monopoly and boost local content – FG

    The Minister disclosed that the DSO has been rolled out in five states so far.

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    The Federal Government said the Digital Switch Over is a priority project because it will improve local content, create jobs, curb content monopolies and improve on-demand television to millions of Nigerian households.

    This was disclosed by the Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed At The Digital Switch Over Stakeholders Meeting in Lagos on Monday.

    The Minister disclosed that the DSO has been rolled out in five states so far, adding that the FG is “kick-starting the new rollout here in Lagos state on April 29th 2021, Kano state on June 3rd 2021 and Rivers state on July 8th 2021. We will then follow up with Yobe state on July 15th 2021 and Gombe state on August 12th 2021.”

    What the Minister said

    • The DSO is about stimulating local content and empowering platform owners. It’s about creating jobs for our teeming population, especially the very creative youth population. This project is capable of generating 1 million jobs in three years.
    • We have carried out an unprecedented reform of the broadcasting industry because we know that there is a nexus between those reforms and the success of the DSO. The amendments were necessitated by the need to boost the local content in Nigeria, curb anti-competitive and monopolistic tendencies and boost advertising revenues.

    The Amendments

    The Minister revealed that the FG  amended the Code to curb monopoly and exclusivity of programme content in order to create room for the local industry to grow. “For example, the pay-tv sector of the Broadcast Industry had been controlled by foreign interests, while indigenous efforts to compete have been frustrated or weakened by the established control of the big monopolies,” he said.

    • We have amended the Code to stimulate growth in the advertising industry, introducing regulations mandating media agencies and advertisers to offset all outstanding invoices within 60 days related to advert placement and the barring of carriage of adverts of defaulters.
    • Under the new amendment, for a programme to qualify as local content, it must be authored, directed and produced by a Nigerian. In addition, at least 75 per cent of the leading actors and major supporting cast must be Nigerians, a minimum of 75% of its program expenses and 75% of post-production expenses paid for services provided by Nigerians or Nigerian companies.

    The Minister added that the amendments also boosted advertising as all advertised products and services manufactured, grown, processed, developed, created and originating from Nigeria, shall be wholly produced in Nigeria.

    What you should know

    In February, The Federal Government launched a 14-member Ministerial Task Force on the Digital Switch Over (DSO) rollout across the country.

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    Business

    CBN moves against bad debtors to other financial institutions in new circular

    The CBN has said it will extend its Credit Risk Management System to other financial institutions in the country.

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    The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has further moved against bad debtors as it said it will extend its Credit Risk Management System (CRMS) to the other financial institutions (OFIs) in the country.

    This follows the successful implementation of the CRMS in deposit money banks across the country.

    This disclosure is contained in a circular titled, ‘Credit Risk Management System: Commencement of Enrolment of all Development Finance Institutions, Microfinance Banks, Primary Mortgage Banks and Finance Companies, issued by the apex bank and signed by its Director, Financial Policy and Regulation Department, Kelvin Amugo, on April 8, 2021.

    CBN in the circular noted that this policy is to help promote a safe and sound financial system in the country as well as prevent the bad debtors from undermining the banking system.

    What the CBN is saying in the circular

    The statement from the CBN’s circular reads, “As part of efforts to promote a safe and sound financial system in Nigeria, the CBN introduced the CRMS to improve credit risk management in commercial, merchant and non-interest banks as well as to prevent predatory borrowers from undermining the banking system.

    “With the successful implementation of the CRMS in deposit money banks, it has become expedient to commence the enrolment of Other Financial Institutions on the CRMS platform.

    Accordingly, all DFIs, MfBs, PMBs and FCs are required to report all credit facilities (principal and interest) to the CRMs and to update same on monthly basis. OFIs shall note the Bank Verification Numbers and Tax Identification Numbers are the only basis for regulatory renditions.

    To ensure full compliance, OFIs are reminded to conclude the tagging of ALL life credits files for ALL individual and non-individual borrowers with BVN and TIN respectively by May 14, 2021.’’

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    The apex bank in the circular also advised concerned OFIs to acquaint themselves with the regulatory guidelines for the operations of the redesigned CRMS for commercial, merchant and non-interest banks in the country.

    While noting that it would monitor compliance with the requirements of this circular, the CBN said that appropriate sanctions would be applied for non-compliance.

    What you should know

    • The CRMS was introduced due to rising cases of non-performing loans in banks and this contributed significantly to the financial distress in the banking sector.
    • This was also compounded by the existence of predatory debtors in the banking system who are fond of abandoning their debt obligations in some banks only to move to contract new debts in other banks. This led to the need for a central database from which consolidated credit information on borrowers could be obtained.
    • The CRMS is web-enabled thereby allowing banks and other stakeholders to dial directly into the CRMS database for the purpose of rendering statutory returns or conducting status enquiry on borrowers.

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