Nigeria Defense and Security
Economy, energy and environment
Nigeria is the eighth largest oil exporter in the world and in 2014 it became the largest African economy, as rebasing operations confirmed that Nigerian GDP exceeds that of South Africa. With a daily production of over two million barrels, oil is the most important national resource of all: about 80% of tax revenues derive from the sale of crude oil, which accounts for 95% of total exports. The government is trying to diversify the economy, nevertheless it remains closely linked to the trend in oil prices and the real extraction capacities in loco, which recovered after the significant reductions caused by the conflict in the Niger Delta region.
According to CLOTHINGEXPRESS.ORG, the export of oil no longer involves the United States, once the main importer, which, having acquired greater energy independence, has announced the end of the purchase of crude oil from Abuja. The U knows remain important investors, especially in mining and large-scale distribution.
2015 saw a GDP growth rate of 4%, lower than the 6.3% of the previous year. The main impact is the collapse in the price of oil, which also seriously affects the state budget. Although the high inflation rate and public debt have long been the two main economic policy problems, the efforts of the former finance minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala (nominated in 2012 for the presidency of the World Bank and since September 2015 assumed by the investment bank Lazard) to renegotiate the debt, create a fund to set aside part of the profits deriving from oil and reduce, despite the fierce disputes, subsidies on fuels, are improving the prospects of macroeconomic stability. A further critical point is the excessive number of institutions involved in decision-making processes, which leads to frequent conflicts of jurisdiction and multiple taxation. Infrastructure remains poor, especially in the electricity and communications sectors, even though the government is privatizing the energy sector. The emergence of national companies, even in extractions, rather than signaling the vitality of the economy seems to point to a growing disinterest of multinationals, reluctant to increase investments in such a difficult climate.
Agriculture, above all traditional, employs almost 45% of the active population but the lack of services, the use of inadequate technologies, the excessive fragmentation of properties, the growing desertification in the north and the erosion of arable land in the central regions so that productivity is low. In a situation of constant population growth, Nigeria has thus become an importer of agricultural products, while in 1960 it was a net exporter.
Along the Nigerian coast there are some of the most important ports in West Africa (Lagos and Port Harcourt), but the high customs fees and widespread searches (it is estimated that 95% of incoming shipments are physically inspected) severely limit the potential. commercial sector, as well as being a constant source of corruption. Instability, corruption and crime, especially growing piracy, pose serious threats to the country’s growth.
Defense and security
With 80,000 enlisted personnel, the Nigerian armed forces are among the best trained in West Africa. However, the confused military response to Boko Haram highlighted some serious problems, including inadequate military salaries, often not paid for months, insufficient equipment and widespread corruption at all levels. Mutiny and desertion attempts are frequent and the low income translates into exactions on the population and thefts. During the state of emergency in the north-east of the country, the armed forces did not hesitate to publicly kill or torture suspected members of Boko Haram, making the checks and operations more like reprisals than acts of protection of the civilian population and suffering the denunciation. of various human rights organizations. The Nigerian army remains engaged on several fronts within the country: in addition to the counter-offensive against Boko Haram, patrols have been intensified to end illegal oil trafficking and to limit piracy. The army remains strongly present in the regions in which it operated until 2009 on Mend (who claimed, through sabotage and kidnapping of international workers, a more equitable distribution of the proceeds of hydrocarbons, as well as compensation of local communities for the mismanagement of the extraction sites). Nigeria is also involved in peacekeeping missions in Sudan (U namid), Liberia (Unmil), Mali (M inusma), Guinea-Bissau (Ecomib) and the Democratic Republic of Congo (M onusco).