NBS alters criteria, now counting all those engaged in paid activities for at least an hour weekly as employed, compared to a previous 20-hour threshold.
KPMG’s contrasting report predicts Nigeria’s unemployment rate to surge from 37.7% in 2022 to 40.6% in 2023, contradicting NBS’s positive findings.
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) of Nigeria reported that at the end of March, three out of every four Nigerians of working age were employed.
This, as reported, is in stark contrast to the most recent data, which revealed that one in three Nigerians who were able to and actively seeking a job were unable to find one as of the end of 2020.
However, what seems to be a substantial decline in unemployment is not what it seems. It was anticipated that the results would significantly alter after the NBS indicated that it was updating its methodology to comply with International Labour Organization (ILO) standards.
The fact that all people of working age who participate in any activity for pay or profit for at least one hour a week are now considered to be employed is one of the significant changes. In the past, a minimum of 20 hours of work each week was the standard for employment.
According to the survey, just 12% of Nigerians who were employed as of March owned their own businesses or worked in agriculture. The report is also expected to cause controversy because it was done before the end of May when a new administration took office and eliminated a decades-long gasoline subsidy.
Additionally, the government has eased currency limitations, which has caused a surge in commodity prices. The people most negatively impacted by these changes are small companies and those with modest incomes. The closing of businesses and how employees had to quit working due to expensive transportation costs have been covered by the local media.
In addition, the NBS analysis stands in contrast to a KPMG report that was published earlier this year. According to the research, Nigeria already had an alarmingly high percentage of unemployment and that number was expected to increase.
The worldwide audit and tax consultancy firm KPMG predicted that Nigeria’s unemployment rate will increase to 40.6% in 2023 from 37.7% in 2022. This was revealed in the organization’s International Global Economic Outlook report – H1 2023, which was released in April.