By Modupe Gbadeyanka
A report from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has indicated that no fewer than 1.7 million Nigerians became jobless in nine months.
In the report titled ‘Unemployment/Under‐Employment Report Q3 2016’, it was revealed that from January 2016 to September 2016, the total number of person in full time employment (did any form of work for at least 40hours) decreased by 272,499 or 0.51 percent when compared to the previous quarter, and decreased by 1.66 million (1.7 million) or 3.01 percent when compared to Q3 of 2015.
NBS explained that the labour force population covers all persons aged 15 to 64 years who are willing and able to work regardless of whether they have a job or not. The definition of unemployment therefore covers persons (aged 15–64) who during the reference period were currently available for work, actively seeking for work but were without work.
It explained further that a person is regarded as employed if he/she is engaged in the production of goods and services, thereby contributing to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in a legitimate manner, which is a component of the national accounts and receives any form or amount of compensation for that activity.
However, the NBS noted that underemployment occurs if one works less than full time hours, which is 40 hours, but work at least 20 hours on average a week and /or if you work full time but are engaged in an activity that underutilizes his skills, time and educational qualifications.
According to the report, the number of economically active population or working age population (persons within ages 15 and 64) increased from 106.69 million in Q2 2016 to 108.03 million, this represents a 1.26 percent increase over the previous quarter and a 3.57 percent increase when compared to Q3 2015.
It said in Q3 2016, the labour force population (i.e those within the working age population willing, able and actively looking for work) increased to 80.67 million from 79.9 million in Q2 2016, representing an increase of 0.98 percent in the labour force during the quarter.
This means about 782,886 persons from the economically active population entered the labour force, that is individuals that were able, willing and actively looking for work. This magnitude of increase between Q2 and Q3 2016 is smaller when compared to Q1 and Q2 2016, which was an increase of 1.39 million in the Labour force population.
The report noted that the “IMF Global growth forecast is projected to slow to 3.1 percent in 2016 before recovering to 3.4 percent in 2017.”
It however disclosed that, “The highest unemployment rate in the world is recorded in Djibouti (54%), Congo (46.1%), Bosnia and Herzegovinian (41.3%), Afghanistan (40%) and Kenya (40%) while the lowest are found in Qatar (0.2%), Cambodia (0.5%), Belarus (1%), Benin (1.0%), Thailand (1.2%),
Madagascar (1.2%) Laos (1.4%) and Guinea (1.7%).
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