Low productivity has been fingered as the cause of slow growth in Nigeria, a situation that experts lament and call for targeted education and technical training to buoy up productivity per capita.
International Business & Project Development Consultant at Ant Hill Concepts Limited, and member of the Board of Economists, NATIONAL ECONOMY, Dr. Emeka Okengwu identified factors of productivity to be the right education and training, as well as the right environment and the application of science, skills and technology to raw materials. He said the right kind of training, when juxtaposed with internal demand for goods and services, would determine the right output for development.
Dr Nnaemeka Onyeka Obiaraeri, FICA had reasoned that with the value of the total goods and services being produced and captured formally in Nigeria (domestically) in Q1 of 2021 being N2,998,000,000,000.00/ $5,656,603,773.58, and if annualise these quarterly receipts, (all things being equal), it will come to annualised productivity value of N11,992,000,000,000/$22.
He noted that the total domestic production of goods and services in Nigeria in 2020 was formally captured to be N10.17tn or per capita productivity of N50,800 or N139 a day.
He extrapolated that the latest 2021, Q1 numbers (based on the population figure of 200 million), this simply translates to the very pitiable domestic per capita productivity of N59,960/$113.
That would translate to the total value of domestic goods and services produced by every Nigerian in the whole of 2021 being N59,960/$113 or N164/$0.30 per day .
Obiaraeri queried the fiscal, socio-economic, governance and resources production and distribution framework of the current 1999 constitution that directs states to the federal government for monthly federal allocation for the under-productivity the country is suffering.
According to him, rather than continue to make a mess of everyone in the system, by deliberately pushing a majority of Nigerians to parasitically leech and depend mainly on the crude oil from the Niger Delta and Value Added Tax from Lagos State, the national and state assemblies, should quickly lean on the High Court ruling on VAT collection by states to totally restructure Nigeria and return her to the 1960/1963 Republican Constitution, socio-economic and governance architecture.
He said if Nigerians are truly honest to themselves, they should agree on how to devolve more powers, resources and authority to the constituent units and the people and check the massive roguery and political banditry going on in Nigeria since 1999.
He said this will be done in such a way and manner that can enable Nigerians to have a daily per capita productivity of goods and services of at least N2,000 a day or N720,000 a month by 2023/2024.
“If we restructure today and return Nigeria to the 1960/63 fiscal and governance framework that engendered productivity and healthy competition amongst the constituent units in the First Republic, by 2023/2024, Nigerians at home would be able to generate about N79,640,000,000,000/$150.2 billion if all the estimated adult working population of 110 million Nigerians are put to active productivity of goods and services within the system.
“At a worst case scenario, even if we are able to put 50% of the working population to active productivity of goods and services, Nigerians at home will still be able to generate at least N39.8tn/$75.13bn annually,” he said.
Obiaraeri added that ten per cent income tax on this worst case scenario numbers will give the government about N4.00tn/$7.5bn and N2.97tn in VAT alone.
“Nigeria has the capacity to grow her economy annually by over N35tn/$80bn year on year, if we put in place that contemporaneous and productivity-engendering constitutional and fiscal architecture that our forebears, Nnamdi Azikiwe, Obafemi Awolowo, Ahmadu Bello, Anthony Enahoro etc signed unto in 1960,” he stressed.
Okengwu, on the other hand, stressed the need for right and targeted education and training as the way to go to increase productivity.