Informal Sector Contributes 60% to Nigeria’s GDP – Ministry of Labour
The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity, Dr. Clement Illoh, has said that the informal sector of Nigeria’s economy is responsible for creating about 90% of the jobs in the country, and that the informal economy contributed about 60% to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product.
Speaking during the Third Registrar of Trade Unions’ Annual Workshop, themed, ‘Current Challenges and Prospects of Trade Union Administration in Nigeria,’ in Abuja, he said that the sector was not adequately recognised and protected in the existing legal and regulatory framework of the government.
The Permanent Secretary pointed out that the informal economy had continued to expand and create employment opportunities for millions of workers who had lost their jobs due to shrinking nature of the employment in the formal sector.
He expressed concern about the unprotected conditions under which employees in the informal sector work, adding that they were exposed to high degree of vulnerability and poverty which had serious implications on the country’s labour relations’ practices.
He assured trade unions in Nigeria of better days ahead, as the Federal Government had adopted policies aimed at enhancing the performance of the informal economy.
According to him, the Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity is determined to transform the labour sector through professional service delivery and promote standards that will be at par with international obligations.
Illoh explained that the workshop was aimed at creating awareness and sensitising trade unions to the concepts and challenges of the informal economy.
He mentioned some of the policies adopted by government at various levels aimed at enhancing the performance of the informal sector which are the Entrepreneurship Development Policy, International Financial Assistance and monetary policy through microfinance banks, among others.
Illoh also stated that the government had set up intervention agencies such as Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agencies, National Directorate of Employment and a host of others over the past decades to ameliorate the sufferings of the people in the informal economy, stressing that these policies had to be completed by the efforts of the trade unions.