Why is the Nigerian Economy Weak?
The Straight answer to this question is that the Nigerian economy is weak because it is suffering from LOW PRODUCTIVITY issues. We are running, largely, a CONSUMER ECONOMY!
We Import Virtually EVERYTHING!
There's this insatiable desire for foreign products among the Nigerian populace that is killing us really fast! We don't appreciate Made in Nigeria products, we always have a reservation for it which is that it is FAKE! For as long as we see things in this light, the Nigerian Economy shall remain weak if it doesn't go even weaker!
This is because for every foreign product that we consume, there;s a negative impact on the Nigerian economy. When you buy foreign, you don't only put money in the foreign economy and deny the Nigerian Economy the much needed funding that it deserves, you also help the foreign economy to keep a job while you, at the same time, kill a job opportunity right here in Nigeria.
We Export Crude Raw Materials to Import Expensive Finished Goods
The Reason why the Federal Government (FG) pay oil importers huge amount of money as subsidy on Petroleum products is due to the Fact that the Same Federal Government exports CRUDE OIL to foreign refineries and then turn around to buy just a few out the hundreds of products and bye products of the exported crude oil at exorbitant prices. This is not to mention all the scams and corruption that goes with it. I made an example of the what is happening in the Oil industry because we are more familiar with it. But, sadly, it's NOT the only product that we export in it's most crude form.
Our farmers too are guilty of this 'economic crime'. They too want to own dollars and of course, get the highest profits from the sales of their products. But, what they don't know is that every time they export their farm products directly into the international market, our local industries are denied the much needed raw materials they need for production to happen which translates, indirectly to further loss of jobs as employers might be forced to down size since sales is not matching the expenses of production. Another typical example I'll like to make is that of a piece that I read in some old newspaper.
According to the Paper, Ivory Coast happens to be one the largest exporters of cocoa beans and makes around $2.5 billion from it (as at then) while just one company of the so many that purchase these cocoa beans makes as much as $16 billion from the processing of the cocoa beans into finished products such as chocolate and beverage drinks! Do you see this, a company that doesn't own a single tree of cocoa is earning far much more than the farmers that spend all their time tending to the cocoa trees!
While it is true that we have very few companies that can add value to the farm produce, it is also a fact too that the 'sell to the highest bidder' attitude of our farmers makes it a little expensive and difficult for the local industry to buy from them as the farmers and the middlemen in the system always want to sell at the international price level to them.
We can Strengthen the Nigerian Economy!
The Nigerian economy would be strengthened the day we change our attitude to National Development. The Day we start to put national interest before our personal interest is the day we shall begin to see significant positive changes in the economy. I dream and hope seriously for that day to come!
A day when an average Nigerian would understand that putting the national interest first is an honorable thing to do as it helps to improve the Quality of life of many people. A day when people begin to be generous and show a great deal of concern to the welfare of his neighbor. He is ready to earn less profit from his business just to relief the hardship of a fellow countryman. That's going to be the day we all start to enjoy.
When I make sure that I do to you only those things that I would wish to be done to me (If I were in your shoes) is the day we truly eradicate poverty and start to create immense wealth! We need to understand that businesses are PAID SOLUTIONS. Therefore, business owners should be more concerned much more about how many people they were able to sell the solutions to rather than how much they make from the Sales!