No fewer than 4.4 million Nigerians lost their jobs in 2017, a report by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has revealed.
The NBS report released yesterday in Abuja stated that the percentage of unemployed Nigerians increased from 16.2 percent in the second quarter of 2017 to 18.8 percent in the third quarter.
It disclosed that the number of people within the labour force who were unemployed increased from 13.6 million in the second quarter of the year to 15.9 million in the third quarter of the same year, with more than two million people unemployed within the period.
Similarly, the number of underemployed increased from 17.7 million in the second quarter to 18.0 million in Q3 2017 just as it added that Nigeria’s economy has been shrinking since2014
The report read in part: “The number of unemployed people within the labour force who are unemployed or underemployed increased from 13.6 million and 17.7 million respectively in Q2 2017 to 15.9 million and 18.0 million in Q3 2017.
“Nigeria’s economic growth has been decelerating since Q2 2014, culminating in an economic recession in Q2 2016. The economic recession was technically over in Q2 2017. However, several economic activities are still contracting or recovering sub-optimally.”
“An economic recession is consistent with an increase in unemployment as jobs are lost and new jobs creation is stalled. The unemployment rate, induced by a recession, typically peaks about 15-18 months after the beginning of a recession or 4-8 months after the end of a recession before it returns to its pre-recession trend.
“This, in the case of Nigeria, will be a peak in Q4 2017 which means we will only expect unemployment to return to its normal trend in 2018. The length of the lag depends on how deep and long the recession was. It also depends on how stable and fast the recovery is as well as on the economic sectors driving the recovery (labour or capital/technology intensive),” it added.
The NBS report stated further that the total number of people in full-time employment (at least 40 hours a week) declined from 52.7 million in Q2 2017 to 51.1 million in Q3 2017.
“During the quarter Q3 2017, 21.2% of women within the labour force (aged 15-64 and wailling, able, and actively seeking work) were unemployed, compared with 16.5% of men within the same period,” it said.