Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


Remittances to Mexico are occasionally in the news here in the USA. I had no idea of the size of remittances to Nigeria. Solomonsydelle, a blogger who writes the Nigerian Curiosity blog, says that remittances were 5% of the Nigerian GDP in 2005 and that the 5% might be only a quarter of the actual amount of remittances.

If the people who send all that money back to family in Nigeria are also able to vote in Nigerian elections (and the elections were fair), what political effects should we expect?

Nigerians abroad send at least $10 billion in remittances to their loved ones at home. This amount makes Nigeria the 6th highest destination for remittances according to the World Bank. That also makes Nigeria the top remittance destination on the African continent...

From People Move, a World Bank blog about migration, remittances, and development.

Nigerians are expected to take care of a lot more than just their immediate family. As a result, the average Nigerian family consists of a mother, father, children and many dependents such as in laws, cousins, and sometimes, neighbors. Once a young Nigerian gets a job, and sometimes even before that, he or she must begin to contribute to dependents...

On a fiscal level, remittances act as a source of capital second only to foreign direct investment...

Unfortunately, remittances are expected to drop between 2009 and 2011 as a result of the global economic slowdown...

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