Nigeria's Population Predicted To Reach 450 Million By 2025
By Iwedi Ojinmah 6 days ago
The United States Consular General in Lagos, Mr. John Bray has said that Nigeria is on track to reach nearly 450 million by 2050, a number that would make it the 3rd most populous nation in the world.
The US Envoy stated this in Lagos at the opening ceremony of “Conference Agenda on National Security in a Boundaryless World,” he said that the convergence of these factors, and a poor economic outlook, will have a significant impact on security and stability in Nigeria.
Bray disclosed that according to UNICEF, Nigeria has more out-of-school children than any nation in the world. The growing number of uneducated Nigerians puts a significant economic burden on a nation that has one of the worst tax-GDP ratios in the world and a nation that spends 66 per cent of its budget on servicing the national debt.
He noted that the statistics are compounded by the 8.6 per cent average annual decline of the value of the Nigerian Naira in relation to the dollar.
“The country relies on oil and gas exports as its main source of revenue, but it only applies 11 per cent of those products to its ability to increase other exports,” he said.
The US Ambassador said that the country is in sore need of economic diversification Related: Jilted Boyfriend Burns Down Ex's House, Kills 5 Family Members . It does have some potential avenues it could exploit, such as agriculture and Nigeria’s growing popular entertainment sector (which could outpace oil and gas revenues if properly exploited). “1987 was the last year Nigeria recorded economic growth in agriculture as low as it did in 2018, just over 1 per cent.”
He said that heightened farmer-herdsman conflicts have taken their toll on agricultural growth and diminishing food security only increases instability in the Middle Belt.
He noted that the statistics clearly indicate that Nigeria faces some daunting economic challenges.
Bray said that Africa is currently experiencing what the Economist has called, “The Third Wave of Economic Interest,” the first having been associated with colonialism and the second with the Cold War. The Third Wave is a new kind of scramble for economic influence in Africa, and Nigeria is at the top of the list for those considering trade opportunities.
He emphasised that the United States does not want to be characterised as a country that only cares about extracting resources from African nations. He said the United States seeks to demonstrate that its economic interests in Africa are based on priorities that benefit Africans.