Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Instant economic growth

Splashy headlines announced that Nigeria was now Africa's largest economy. How did that happen so suddenly? What does it mean for Nigerian government and politics?

Hello Nollywood: how Nigeria became Africa's biggest economy overnight; Nigeria's GDP has been revised up by 89%. Here are five things this tells us about the finances of Africa's most populous nation
Nigeria is now officially Africa’s biggest economy. Its GDP was revised up to £307bn this week, after economists re-adjusted the way they calculate the figures for more than 24 years. Most other countries go through this process (known as "rebasing") every five years…

In view of this, here are five things you might not know about the newly recognised elements of Nigeria’s economy:

  1. The movie industry, known as Nollywood, produces more films a year than any other country except India… Motion pictures, sound recording and music production are collectively now worth billions of pounds, and constitute 1.4% of the country’s £307bn GDP…
  2. Only 20 years ago, Nigeria had one telecoms operator and around 300,000 telephone lines… Now, there are up to 120 million mobile phone subscribers in a country of around 170m people, and dozens of providers… According to the new data, telecommunications and information services contribute 8.69% of the country’s GDP, and with companies engaging in aggressive smart phone marketing, this is expected to grow.
  3. Nigeria’s formal services industry has grown more than 240% compared with the last figure recorded in 1990… the country’s informal services – such as those provided by barbers, cobblers, cyber cafes, and street vendors – went under the radar until teams were dispatched in 2011 to record their contributions. Those which come under the “other services” category account for 1.68% of the country’s GDP.
  4. Just over two decades ago Nigeria also had only one airline. Now it has several - with Arik Air and Dana Air being two of the most well-known…
  5. Though Nigeria now boasts Africa’s largest economy, the figures have also highlighted familiar problems. Oil and gas revenues are by far the government’s main source of income although the industry is also plagued by allegations of corruption. Oil and gas contributed 14% of GDP under the new data, compared with 32% under the 1990 figures…

Though the new figures show Nigeria’s economy has grown 12.7% between 2012 and 2013, more than 60% of Nigerians still live on less than one dollar a day. “Inequality has been rising,” the finance minister, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, acknowledged…

Teaching Comparative blog entries are indexed.

What You Need to Know is a thorough review of comparative government and politics as described in the AP curriculum.


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What You Need to Know: Teaching Tools, original version and  v2.0 can be helpful to teachers planning for reviews or next year.


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