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Fintechs to Drive CBN’s Financial Inclusion Target

The Apex bank raised Nigeria’s financial inclusion target to 95% from 80% set in 2012 and extended the target year to 2024 from 2020 previously.

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Following a recent meeting between the Central Bank and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the apex bank raised Nigeria’s financial inclusion target to 95% from 80% set in 2012 and extended the target year to 2024 from 2020 previously. Earlier in the year, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had expressed optimism that the 80% financial inclusion target will be reached by 2020.

With one year to the 2020 target and recent data from Enhancing Financial Innovative and Access (EFInA) indicating that 36.8% eligible Nigerian adults still do not have access to financial services as of 2018, the likelihood of achieving the 80% financial inclusion target by 2020 became slimmer and necessitated the review.  

One of the major barriers to financial inclusion in Nigeria has been the uneven spread of financial access points, limiting access to appropriate products and services in rural areas. To aid the achievement of this target, the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has approved the posting of corps members to deposit money banks (DMBs), microfinance banks (MFBs) and local government areas (LGAs) from now till 2024.

The corps members will serve as peer educators, particularly in the rural areas, to each drive the opening of 200 new accounts by the end of 2019 and complement other ongoing efforts by the CBN. Earlier in the year, the CBN Governor unveiled four policy documents for the financial sector; The revised National Financial Inclusion Strategy, the Financial Literacy Framework, the Consumer Protection Framework and the Consumer Education Framework, all of which are targeted at facilitating the attainment of the financial inclusion target.

[READ ALSO: Access to credit facility is a global problem for SMEs – CWG Acting CEO]

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In our view, fintech companies have a significant role to play if CBN is to achieve this target in 2024. Fintech providers can capitalize on their large customer bases for payment services, to offer customers other financial services. Not only are fintech firms involved in deepening financial inclusion, they also facilitate economic development in SSA. Fintech supports technological advancement in other sectors such as agriculture and infrastructure as well, boosting economic growth.

Fintech firms are filling the gap between financial services companies and customers by disrupting key financial service segments and digital payments (Paytech), digital insurance (Insurtech), banking (Banktech), wealth management services (Wealthtech), and regulations (Regtech) and creating space for selling financial products. Big technology firms such as Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Google, and Alibaba have also entered the financial services space, enhancing innovation and competition.

At a time when technology is disrupting the global financial services industry, Nigeria too has been part of the change. Although a cash economy, Nigeria’s financial system is receptive to the new transformations in the financial system, especially the introduction of technology.

The digitization of the financial services industry, especially banking, is underway with Wema Bank launching Nigeria’s first fully digital bank, ALAT, in 2017. With ALAT, Nigerians can open a fully functional account online through the web or the app in a mere five minutes. Such easy access to banks, using technology, should improve financial inclusion in the country.

[READ MORE: ORide Launches in Nigeria, Offers Amazing Prices]

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Official: Imo State is unemployment capital of Nigeria

According to NBS, 75.1% of the total employable people in Imo State are either underemployed or unemployed.

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Ogun, Imo States give free hand sanitizers

Data from the National Bureau of Statistics reveal Imo State, located in the South-Eastern part of Nigeria has the highest unemployment rate in the country.

In contrast, Anambra State is the state with the least unemployment in the country with 13.1% unemployment rate. The national average for the unemployment rate is 27.1%

Imo State has an unemployment rate of 48.7% as at the second quarter of 2020, by far the highest when compared to any other state in the country.

According to the data, 75.1% of the total employable people in the state are either underemployed or unemployed.

See highlights

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  • Total number of employable people – 2.48 million
  • Fully employed people – 618, 481
  • Unemployed people in the state – 593. 347
  • Underemployed – 656, 394

Imo State is largely a civil service town and has been unlucky with state governors over the last 20 years. Private sector jobs are hard to come by in the serene state with most industries setting up show in nearby cities like Aba, Port Harcourt, and Onitsha.

The city was once notorious for ritual motivated murders and kidnappings but has since overcome these challenges.

States Unemployment Rates – Q2 2020

Other States

Akwa Ibom State is next on the list with an unemployment rate of 1.14 million people. The state’s underemployed population is about 551k people while the unemployment and underemployment rates combined is 66.9%.

The best: The state with the lowest unemployment rate in Nigeria is Anambra State with 13.1% out of the total working population of 2.25 million people. The state was 37 out of 37 states in the ranking of unemployment by state. About 1.9 million people in Anambra State are either fully employed (1.57 million) or under-employed (384k) in the state.

Lagos State, Nigeria’s commercial capital and where most graduates rush to for jobs currently has an unemployment rate of 19.5% and sits at 27 in the state by state unemployment ladder. The data shows about 6.8 million people make up the labour force population in Lagos State out of which 3.99 million people are fully employed and another 1.5 million people are underemployed. About 870k Lagosians who are employable did absolutely nothing.

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Concentration: In terms of the concentration of unemployed people, Rivers State came first with a whopping 1.7 million people out of jobs in the state. The state as a working population of 3.9 million. Rivers State unemployment rate is 43.7 and ranks third as the worst. 21.7 million Nigerians are unemployed.

Lagos State had the most employed persona with about 3.99 million people out of a total of 35.5 million.

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Economy & Politics

Nigeria’s unemployment rate jumps to 27.1% as at 2020 Q2

Nigeria’s unemployment rate as at the second quarter of 2020 is 27.1% meaning about 21.7 million Nigerians remain unemployed.

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Nigeria’s unemployment rate as at the second quarter of 2020 is 27.1% indicating that about  21,764,614 (21.7 million) Nigerians remain unemployed.

Nigeria’s unemployment and underemployment rate (28.6%) is a combined 55.7%. This means the total number of Nigerians who are unemployed or underemployed as at 2020 Q2.

This is contained in a recently released unemployment data report published by the National Bureau of Statistics. Nigeria’s unemployment rate was 23.1% in Q3 2018 confirming it increased by 4% points between then and the second quarter of 2020.

Key highlights

  • The number of persons in the economically active or working-age population (15 – 64 years of age) during the reference period of the survey, Q2, 2020 was 116,871,186.
  • The number of persons in the labour force (i.e. people within ages 15 -64, who are able and willing to work) was estimated to be 80,291,894. This was 11.3% less than the number persons in Q3, 2018. Of this number, those within the age bracket of 25-34 were highest, with 23,328,460 or 29.1% of the labour force.
  • The total number of people in employment (i.e. people with jobs) during the reference period was dwellers, it rose to 31.5% from 22.8%, while the rate among urban dwellers rose to 23.2% from 58,527,276.
  • Of this number, 35,585,274 were full-time employed (i.e. worked 40+ hours per week), while 22,942,003 were under-employed (i.e. working between 20-29 hours per week). This figure is 15.8% less than the people in employment in Q3, 2020
  • The unemployment rate during the reference period, Q2, 2020 was 27.1%, up from the 23.1% recorded in Q3, 2018. The underemployment rate increased from 20.1% in Q3, 2018 to 28.6%.
  • For the period under review, Q2, 2020, the unemployment rate among young people (15-34years) was 34.9%, up from 29.7%, while the rate of underemployment for the same age group rose to 28.2% from 25.7% in Q3, 2018. These rates were the highest when compared to other age groupings.

The data is coming after nearly two years when the last data was published. The bureau last published jobs data in the third quarter of 2018 citing funding as a major challenge.

Key Take-aways

  • Nigeria’s youth remain the hardest hit by unemployment with over 13.9 million people aged between 15 and 34 years unemployed.
  • The data also shows 7.6 million of this subset did nothing.
  • Women also continue to bear the brunch of bad economy with about 12.2 million out of jobs from the 27 million currently unemployed.
  • Graduates and post graduates combined made up about 2.9 million of the total Nigerians that are unemployed.
  • In a surpising data, out of the 35.5 million Nigerians that are fully employed, 28.8 million of them never attended school (6.29 million) or did not have a tertiary education (22.5).
  • In fact, most fully employed people in Nigeria with SSS (Senior Secondary School certificates) are a whopping 13.2 million.

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Coronavirus

COVID-19: Nigeria, 6 other African countries to start antibodies tests next week

These countries are the first set of countries to commit to the testing.

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Nigeria and 6 other African countries will start conducting coronavirus antibodies tests as early as next week, as part of efforts to understand the extent of the outbreak on the continent.

Apart from Nigeria, the other African countries that will benefit from this include Sierra Leone, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Cameroon, and Morocco.

While making the disclosure in Addis Ababa, the head of the African Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, John Nkengasong, said that these countries are the first set of countries to commit to it.

Western countries have been using antibody tests to discover how many of their citizens have been infected by the coronavirus disease, with the expectation that will help them reopen their economies.

This new development is coming some days after the Nigerian Government started negotiations with prospective COVID-19 vaccine distributors to the country ahead of their availability.

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The Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, who kick-started the negotiation on behalf of the Federal Government, in a virtual meeting with representatives of the vaccine candidate, told the co-discussants that Nigeria must be given priority when COVID-19 vaccine is ready for distribution.

Nkengasong said that Africa has so far conducted 9.4 million coronavirus tests, a 10% increase over last week. These tests show whether people currently have the coronavirus disease.

Experts said that the low levels of testing in many countries mean that Africa’s infection rates could be higher than being reported.

He said that 25 African countries still have full border closures, with 23 imposing tests at entry points. He also stressed on the need to harmonize border testing and recognize certificates in order to facilitate travel.

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