High unemployment figures not the same as job losses -Udoma

Udoma Udo Udoma, the minister of budget and national planning, says that the high unemployment figures released by the National Bureau of Statistics are not the same thing as job losses.

Responding to questions from journalists on Thursday at the breakdown session for the 2018 budget proposal.

Udoma said the numbers were as a result of the rate of new job creation lagging behind the rate of new entrants into the job market.

The minister also said that employment growth is generally known to slow down during a recession and takes some time to recover.

According to a statement by Akpandem James, special adviser on media and communications to the minister, the Buhari administration has a positive net job creation record of 1,640,398.

"This is exclusive of the 11.1 million persons that the NBS classifies as people who do some form of work but are considered to have worked too few hours to be officially considered as employed," the statement read.

"This means that many casual workers in farms might be amongst the 11.1 million workers who the NBS enumerators may have felt did not work for enough hours to be considered as employed, and Agriculture is an area in which the Buhari Administration has made massive strides."

Udoma said the economy will continue its upward trajectory and the unemployment numbers will reduce.

"Over the next year Nigerians should expect to see a large increase in job opportunities and a consequent reduction in the overall rate of unemployment," he said.

The latest unemployment report released by the NBS shows that the 20.9 million people in the third quarter of 2018 from 17.6 million in the third quarter of 2017.

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