THE BIG LIE ABOUT NIGERIA’S DEPENDENCE ON OIL
Coming back to the question of if Nigerian’s economy is 75% dependent on oil or not, this is not true! But if you go across Nigeria today and conduct a survey, an overwhelming majority would probably tell you, yes, this is true. Thereby using this claim as the basis for bashing the country, tongue lashing about how much we have failed as a nation.
Yes, we have failed in a lot of ways as a nation and I would be the first to admit it, but our submissions must be factual and truthful. I would not have any issue with this statement about Nigeria been 75% dependent on oil, if it were true because the truth must be our only basis for action.
So what is the truth about the statement of Nigeria being 75% dependent on oil? The truth is that Nigerian economy is not 75% dependent on oil. We were only 14% dependent on oil as of 2012 statistics. But after the rebasing of the Nigerian economy, oil’s contribution to our economy has been reduced to only about 8%. (2014).
So why do most people say, our economy is dependent only on oil? I think the problem is actually with our surface thinking and lack of analysis. Majority of Nigerians, don’t analyze, we don’t carry out research or scientific investigations. The majority of our populace, mainly depend on hearsay, we don’t do our own due diligence.
The truth is that the Nigerian economy gets 75% of its foreign exchange earnings from the export of oil. That is to say the income the country gets from all our exported commodities places oil as our main export product. As a result, 75% of our foreign exchange earnings come from oil, not 75% of our economy. If we are to compare everything we earn from oil and put it on one side, it would only amount to 8% of the amount of money our economy generates.
That is a total departure from the impression that is been created by most people who say we are 75% dependent on oil. Having gotten the right picture that we actually produce as a nation 92% more wealth than oil. The question that arises therefore is, why are we not exporting this produce for foreign exchange earnings?
There are many reasons for our dependence on oil for foreign exchange earnings:
- The biggest chunk of our economy is agriculture, mainly consume locally, rather than exported.
- For us to export our agricultural produce, they must be of the highest quality to compete with the best in the world.
- If you are a business man and you are producing anything, it is easier for you to sell them in Nigeria than outside, because the quality has to match the international standard.
- It is not just the quality that must be good enough, but your price must be competitive enough for you to sell your product outside of your country.
- We mainly export oil because we abandoned our main export industries before. Examples: palm oil, cocoa, groundnuts, timber, cotton, etc.
To be continued tomorrow…
FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, CHURCH AND NATION
By Pastor Sunday Adelaja.