World Bank blames Nigeria’s poverty on over reliance on oil

World Bank hq04 February 2014, Lagos – The World Bank has said  that high unemployment in the country was caused by over-reliance on oil, gas and mineral extraction. The bank noted in its recent report that though the oil and gas sector and mining activity drives economic growth, but they do not create new jobs and do not help in reducing poverty.

It said, “With more than half of sub-Saharan Africa’s population now under the age of 25, and as many as 11 million young Africans expected to join the labour market every year for the next decade, creating millions of productive, well-paying jobs will be vital to boost economic growth, significantly cut poverty, and create shared prosperity in Africa.”

It noted that despite the increase in the oil sector, 80 percent of the workforce will continue to work on small farms and in household businesses in the near future, adding, “The modern wage sector is growing very fast in some countries, it cannot create enough jobs to meet the youth employment challenge now preoccupying governments in every corner of the continent.”

World Bank’s Vice President for Africa, Makhtar Diop, added that young Africans would find their labour and skills increasingly in high demand internationally, if their governments pursued policies that improve education and job training for their youth.

– Dotun Ibiwoye, Vanguard

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