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The Economy & You

The Economy&You - Akin Sodipo

Thu 5th May 2016

Oil and natural gas currently accounts for 91% of Nigeria’s total exports while solid minerals, agricultural produce, industrial products, consumer goods and other recordable exports make up the remaining 9%. Agriculture was the cornerstone of Nigeria’s economy up until the oil boom. And agricultural produce were the main export commodities and the key foreign exchange earner for the country. They included cash crops like cocoa, palm oil, groundnuts, rubber, corn, millet, sorghum, and livestock products. In fact as at 1970 agricultural exports accounted for 42% of the nation’s total exports and 48% of her GDP. Those were the days of the groundnut pyramids in the north. Then Nigeria became the largest exporter of palm oil and palm kernel, she was ranked second to Ghana in cocoa exportation, and was the third highest exporter of groundnut. With the sustained slump in oil prices Nigeria is currently diversifying her economy, and is keen to develop her other export potentials. The agricultural sector is being revamped and the solid minerals sub-sector is receiving more attention. The private sector has also seized the initiative and is driving exports, especially the export of agricultural products, renewable resources and food items. Entrepreneurs and SMEs have vigorously been exploiting the immense untapped potentials in these areas and their efforts have started to have a clear effect on the economy. Moreover a whole new range of products are being traded in the international markets.

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