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‘Nigeria to create 1.5 million new jobs by 2020’


Members of Nigeria Labour congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) protesting in Abuja. PHOTO: LADIDI LUCY ELUKPO

• NLC seeks creation of more opportunities

No fewer than 1.5 million new jobs would have been created in Nigeria by the year 2020.The National Bureau Statistics (NBS) recently made this disclosure in a new report titled: “Nigerian Economy and Policy Environment.”

Meanwhile, the Organised Private Sector (OPS) has lauded the report describing it as achievable if the Federal government fully partners with the OPS through creating an enabling environment for businesses to grow.

It was recently reported that about 3.67 million Nigerians became jobless within a year. Statistics showed that the number of unemployed Nigerians rose from 7.51 million at the beginning of October 2015 to 11.19 million at the end of September 2016.

Specifically, the Lagos State Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Idowu Adelakun said: ”Creating of 1.5 million jobs with the rate of unemployment increase in the country is nothing to write home about.

“In four years time if 1.5million jobs are created what about the people who have lost jobs over 4 year ago, considering the rate of fresh graduates that will join the labour market as at 2020, as union we don’t see it good enough and instead we are clamoring for more creation.

“We believe it achievable for the government to create the jobs and even more if only the federal government can allow the local constituency to have an autumn of there own in order to create jobs through the local government.”

The OPS, lead by Nigerian Employers Consultative Association NECA) argued that monetary policy rate put at 14 per cent in spite of the economic recession would not stimulate economic activities.

According to them, to achieve the target by 2020, there was need for government to create a business friendly Interest Rate regime, saying, “one consequence of the monetary authorities fixation on maintaining an artificial fixed exchange rate has been the high interest rate regime.

“The CBN has maintained monetary policy rate at 14 percent in spite of the economic recession, which would have suggested a different policy response-lowering interest rates to stimulate economic activity.”

On minimum wage issue, the OPS maintained that given the depreciation in the value of the Naira as well as inflation currently put at 18.6 per cent, there is need to increase the minimum wage.

The group also suggested that sustainable funding strategy for the Nigerian economy should focus on attract Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) rather than concentrating on unsustainable internal and external borrowings.OPS added that government should consider reviewing its tax policies to boost investment inflows into the country.

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