Experts say ‘japa’ is good for Nigeria’s economy


Economic experts and analysts weighed in on the trend conversation, “Japan”, which has seen a handful of the Nigerian workforce resign from their jobs, due to overseas travel. Experts have highlighted the benefits that this brain drain/Japan could bring to Africa’s largest economy, but not without drawbacks.

HR officials reported mass resignations of employees in July, with many more expected in August as many Nigerians seek to travel abroad for further education and ultimately in search of a better life.

According to the United Nations International Migration Report, in 2020, a total of 1.67 million Nigerians were international migrants globally. While some analysts have hinted at the potential negative effects of the brain drain on the Nigerian economy, some analysts have noted the possible benefits of such migrations for the country of origin and the international community as a whole.

Among the benefits highlighted by experts are increased remittances from the diaspora, an increase in the remuneration of loyal employees, a drop in the level of unemployment in the country of origin, among others. However, in contrast, skills deficit and lower productivity were listed as possible outcomes.

According Olumide Adesinainvestment analyst at Quantum Economics, he noted that Nigeria’s migration to other developed economies is beneficial for Nigeria and could help boost currency liquidity.

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  • Emigration benefits Africa’s largest economy as a whole. For example, emigration serves to reduce unemployment and increase the wages of the remaining workers by reducing the labor pool in the country of origin.
  • “Additionally, emigrants from Nigeria frequently send money home, which raises the living standards of their families and boosts national economies and the trade balance in the process.
  • “The influx of international remittances from Nigerian emigrants to Nigeria has steadily increased over the past decades. Foreign exchange earnings, foreign direct investment, aid and other private capital investments are made possible by these remittances..”

In the same vein, Opeoluwa Dapo-Thomas, an international market analyst noted that aside from the brain drain for the Nigerian economy, Nigeria tends to benefit from migration. He said, “Mass migration does not affect the Nigerian economy so much, if we want to be statistical about it.

  • Today, the most common way to leave the country is through education. So let’s look at the UK for example, we have 143,820 students from China, 84,555 from India and 21,305 from Nigeria in 2020/2021.
  • So you see the context of that. The country still has more than 200 million inhabitants to boost the economy. This is insignificant in terms of impact on the country, in fact, it stimulates the influx of dollars from diaspora remittances.
  • “However, it creates a bad image of the country, I must admit. It does not give hope to young Nigerians to see their peers leave the country. We also suffer from brain drain. It is a negative effect, although a minimal effect on the country.”

In a statement from Chidi Nwaforan analyst from a major investment house in Nigeria, he said the country of origin has a lot to gain when citizens travel abroad, which includes increasing the amount of inflows through remittances. funds.

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  • While the effects of immigration on the host country have received much attention, less attention has been paid to its effects on the country of origin. The available data suggest that, ultimately, emigration has a positive effect on the country of origin. For example, by decreasing the pool of labor in the country of origin, emigration contributes to reducing unemployment and increasing the incomes of the remaining workers.
  • “Furthermore, emigrants often send money home, which improves their family’s standard of living and thus contributes to both the national economy and the country’s trade balance. However, most emigrants are young, male and married, which can have a destabilizing effect on the family,” he said.
  • He also added that it could result in higher wages for the remaining workforce in the country.

On another side, Olatunde Idowu, a solicitor practicing in the UK said this; “There is a general feeling of lethargy and lack of confidence in the Nigerian project (if there is any). Many people, even up to the age of 50, seek to leave Nigeria with their families and indirectly start their lives over in foreign countries. It will interest you to know that even those who don’t seem interested in ‘japaing’ are looking for ways to acquire a second passport in order to have some level of insurance in case things go south in Nigeria.

  • “The implications of this development are many, firstly, loyalty to the country is now divided. We are now seeing a situation where citizens are looking to hold the USD rather than the Naira. Many people are now trying to reduce their risk and keep foreign currency funds in case they need to leave the country quickly. The current implication of this on the Naira is obvious to the blind.
  • “Second, there is the implication of the brain drain. Many employees who were trained and retrained in Nigeria now travel outside the country and transfer their expertise to other countries.
  • “These countries take the best of the best. In Canada and Australia, for example, they use a points-based system where your qualifications, experience and skills are calculated and ranked among other things. So an average person who entered Canada through the express entry route is likely to have a master’s degree, a professional like a doctor, or a professional qualification.
  • “Also, families are now separated. We have young children leaving their elderly parents in Nigeria. We have brothers and sisters who go to different parts of the world depending on the “best” opportunities available. If not for technology, some siblings might not be able to see their parents before they die.
  • “In my experience, many people prefer to stay in an ideal Nigeria. Many people are afraid to travel and start over. However, the uncertainties hanging over Nigerian society make it frightening to hold on. I am in my mid thirties and was born in an area with bad roads and poor power supply. My 3 year old niece currently has this experience. What is the guarantee that my grandchildren would not face the same challenges? » he added.

Samuel Bamidele, Head, Research and Intelligence at Philips Consulting Limited, opined that the mass migration of Nigerians to other countries is a looming crisis for the source economy and cause for concern. Although it is important to note that this could bring remittances into the economy, because people send foreign currencies to their families, however, the impact of this influx on the economy is a big question to which must be answered, he noted.

  • Are we harnessing the impact of migration in Nigeria, as it could have been an advantage for us.
  • “A major concern is the profile of people leaving the country, which are skilled labor, middle management, senior management, who are leaving the country due to the level of insecurity, bad policies, economic downturn, among others, which has caused a labor market crisis in Nigeria and a skills gap. Companies in critical sectors of the Nigerian economy face a huge skills gap.
  • “However, the recipient country has a lot to gain from this brain drain, which can be categorized into three areas; labor market, the public purse and the economy as a whole.
  • “The recipient country will see their workforce receive a significant boost due to the level of people entering their country. For example, according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, migrants constitute 47% of the increase in the labor force in the United States, 70% in Europe over the past 10 years, an indication of the how the host country labor market the country benefits from the brain drain.
  • “Second, the public purse of the host country increases due to greater productivity, which translates into the payment of taxes and other social contributions, indirectly developing the economy of the country, to the detriment of the original economy.”
  • He however suggested that a way around this massive intellectual drain would be to create an environment conducive to life, as some people leave the country due to insecurity or unstable economy, and would likely choose to stay if basic amenities are in place.


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