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Outflux of skilled workers is a dent on the local labour market



Market survey, FSDH Merchant Bank Ltd, Inflation rate, private sector loans, NBS

The rate at which skilled workers are emigrating from Nigeria to more developed regions has increased significantly over the past four years, as more middle-class citizens search for better living conditions.

A survey by Afrobarometer revealed that more than one in three Nigerians have considered emigration, while the young and educated are most likely to consider going abroad as an escape route from economic hardship. Post-recession, an increasing number of citizens have become more pessimistic in their outlook for the economy and have opted to move to choice destinations like Canada, Australia and New Zealand, that offer better living standards compared to Nigeria.

[READ ALSO: Palm Oil Producers want our borders to be “totally shut”]

Emigration as a scourge: The emigration crisis in Nigeria is not an entirely new phenomenon. The nineties was characterised by clandestine emigration, as many Nigerians resorted to migrate to Europe through the Sahara desert to Libya and then proceed to cross the Mediterranean Sea via overcrowded, rickety boats in a bid to reach Europe.

In 2016, Nigerians made up the largest migrant population entering Italy and Greece and were also identified by Eurostat as the largest cohort of migrants trapped in Libya in the protracted Mediterranean migrant crisis.

In recent times, less risk-tolerant Nigerians apply for US visas with the express intent to
illegally go to Canada to seek asylum. As of March 2019, Nigeria had more pending refugee protection claims in Canada than any other country globally.

In the US, data from the Department of Homeland Security revealed that the number of Nigerians suspected to be overstaying in the US with visitor visas had more than quadrupled between 2015 and 2018. Likewise, the overstay rate of Nigerian students studying in the US soared to 22% in 2018 from 4% in 2015.

Wealthier emigrants, on the other hand, opt for a formal path to economic immigrant status in the United Kingdom, the United States, and more recently Canada. Currently, Nigeria sits comfortably among the top three countries of origin of permanent residents admitted into Canada. This is a sharp contrast to 2014 when Nigeria did not feature on the top ten list.

[READ MORE: The bears have gripped Total Nigeria]

The loss of talents and professionals: The liberal immigration policy being implemented in some developed countries is a strong pull for Nigeria’s top talents that face rising living costs and stagnant incomes. Since 2015, inflation has been at double digits while unemployment has been on a steady rise.

The health care industry is one of the most affected sectors by the exodus of professionals.
The result of a survey conducted by NOI Polls revealed that nine out of ten medical doctors
in practice are exploring work opportunities abroad. In Britain, data on the UK General
Medical Council (GMC) website revealed that there are currently 6,312 medical doctors of
Nigerian origin practising in the UK – an increase of 44% when compared to 2015.

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The remedy: There is no gainsaying that professional firms and major corporations have been affected by brain drain, occasioned by exodus of skilled workers. Against this backdrop, we believe that the Nigerian government should stem the tide of skilled labour migrating to other advanced economies. There is the dire need of the creation of an economic and social environment that is sufficiently attractive to retain them and stimulate productivity.




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[READ FURTHER: Foreign companies are threatening to leave Nigeria]

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Tech News

Spotify podcast listeners set to surpass Apple podcast for the first time in 2021

Spotify’s investments have empowered podcast creators and advertisers through its proprietary hosting, creation, and monetization tools.



The number of Spotify’s podcast listeners will surpass Apple’s listeners this year. According to a report by eMarketer, 28.2 million U.S. users will listen to podcasts on Spotify at least monthly, compared with 28.0 million via Apple Podcasts. This shift will come on the heels of the expected 41.3% in 2021.

Apple was the de facto destination for podcasts for a long time, but in recent years, it has not kept up with Spotify’s pace of investment and innovation in podcast content and technology.

By putting podcasts and music in one app, Spotify became the convenient one-stop-shop for everything digital audio. Unlike Apple that has a different app for podcasts instead of offering a well-integrated experience with music and podcasts in one app.

This shift made more people stick to Spotify for the sheer experience of streaming music and also listening to a podcast on the same platform. Other music streaming services like Amazon, Pandora, etc. also have the seamless experience of enjoying podcasts and music on the same App.

According to the report, Spotify’s investments have empowered podcast creators and advertisers through its proprietary hosting, creation, and monetization tools.

Overall, there will be 117.8 million overall monthly podcast listeners in 2021, a 10.1% year-over-year (YoY) increase. This year, podcast listeners will represent 53.9% of monthly digital audio listeners, surpassing 50% for the first time.

We anticipate that more audio listeners will start listening to podcasts monthly, leading to a 60.9% share by 2024.

This year, $1.28 billion will be spent on podcast advertising, surpassing $1 billion for the first time, representing a 41.0% YoY increase. Podcast advertising is continuing to gain a share of total digital audio ad spending, representing 24.0% in 2021.

What you should know

  • Last week, Spotify announced that it will be expanding its service to 85 new markets including Nigeria.
  • This new expansion came with other upcoming features and products like the paid podcast subscriptions that will allow creators to publish paid podcast content aimed at their most dedicated fans.
  • Spotify is also partnering with WordPress to add a new integration to its platform similar to Clubhouse. This integration will make it easier for bloggers to turn their posts into podcasts, either by reading the blog posts themselves or leveraging third-party text-to-speech technology

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Peter Obi urges FG to beg manufacturers, rich nations for COVID-19 vaccines

Obi urged the FG to consider appealing to rich nations, drug manufacturers for vaccines instead of spending billions of nairas to procure them.



Katsina Abduction, Recession: Economy should be redirected from wasteful-consumption to productivity — Peter Obi

Former governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi has appealed to the Federal Government to take a second look at their stipulated Covid-19 budget and rather, consider begging drug manufacturers and rich nations for the vaccines.

The former Vice Presidential candidate while speaking in an interview on Channels Television, lamented on what he felt was an over-the-top and ludicrous budget for the Covid-19 vaccines and advised that the FG should instead, appeal to manufacturers for the vaccine.

Obi, speaking on the FG Procurement Budget for the Covid-19 vaccine explained that it makes little sense for Nigeria to apportion 80% of its health budget for the procurement of Covid-19 only. He also stated that sufficient Covid-19 vaccine for the country can be purchased for a price way below the figure being put forward by the FG.

They said they need N400bn. Our Budget for health this year is N547bn and you are saying that you need 80% of that for vaccine procurement. Assuming that’s what we are going to use the money for. I have checked the vaccine we need to have 70% which WHO has stipulated that if they receive it is okay. The quantity we need cannot cost us more than N150bn. It might be less because there are people who are willing to give vaccines for free,” Obi said.

Mr. Obi took it a step further by advising the FG on how to go about the quest to get Covid-19 vaccines at a much cheaper rate. He believes the country should own up to its poor status and demand for help unashamedly. This, he said, will reduce the amount the FG will pay for the Covid-19 vaccines.

Why don’t we beg manufacturers to donate, saying to them that we don’t have anything. We can go kneel and beg them saying please give us the vaccines. We are from a poor country. Give us a discount. There is nothing wrong with saying that you are poor. It is not a crime. Because you are poor,” Obi added.

Since pharmaceutical companies and drug manufacturers began discovering and manufacturing vaccines against the novel Covid-19, there have been concerns that the poorer nations might be left far behind in the race to acquire the vaccines.

In case you missed it

  • Nigeria received its first batch of Covid 19 vaccines from India today. The first batch of Oxford AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines from India landed in the Nigerian capital Abuja on Tuesday.
  • About 3.94 million doses of the vaccines arrived at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja via an Emirates flight.

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