Updated: Feb 11
Since the great 2007 economic recession, the eagerness of many to leave Nigeria and settle in a foreign country in hopes of better opportunities has grown stronger, with the United States and United Kingdom being major destination countries.
According to a 2017 report, an estimated 1.24 million Nigerians live outside the country, and the figure is expected to have increased in more recent years. Interestingly, almost 50% Nigerian adults have indicated willingness to leave the country in the next five years --according to a 2018 survey conducted by the Pew Research Centre.
Really, there is nothing bad about seeking for ways to improve your life away from home. And to be fair, searching for greener pastures is hardly a Nigerian thing, as opposed to what many people think. Regardless of race, color or religious differences, everyone desires success.
But as far as the average millennial (between ages 27 and 40) Nigerian goes, the fable of how he will instantly become a wealthy person after he has moved overseas is predominant. But, is this really true?
Truth be told, the absence of adequate basic infrastructures like good road networks, and stable electricity which abound in developed countries does not help matters much. From small-sized business owners to business moguls, epileptic power supply and bad road networks are factors that affect production cost in no small way. As a result, many locally-owned establishments have had to close down in order to regroup elsewhere.
But yet, more and more international brands continue to move here and thrive in spite of the country’s present economic situation. If things are as rosy overseas as prospective Nigerian emigrants often believe, then why are the likes of Uber and Jalal food doing better here? My guess is Nigeria's market size -- one of its greatest strength (and weakness) for businesses.
Graph Credit: PwC
Article Credit: Michael Adesanya