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Infographic: How costly are on a regular basis gadgets in Nigeria? | Meals Information

Greater than ever earlier than, Nigerians are struggling to purchase meals commodities because the nation struggles by means of a file hike in inflation, signalling what experts warn is a “meals disaster”.

Staple costs have risen for a 3rd consecutive 12 months, the outcomes of Africa’s largest financial system bowing below the burden of a barrage of things which might be driving extra of its estimated 200 million folks into poverty.

Costs of staples over time

The price of fundamental requirements has greater than doubled in lots of circumstances (Al Jazeera/SBM Intelligence)

Nigeria, a serious crude producer, is closely reliant on oil imports, leaving its financial system extraordinarily weak to risky oil costs.

As one economist put it, when the oil market sneezes, Nigeria catches a chilly. However worsening insecurity and local weather change impact, in addition to COVID-19 aftershocks, have severely dented the financial system much more, plunging the naira to horrifying new lows towards the greenback in current months.

Consequently, almost half of the inhabitants stays in poverty. Hundreds of thousands face meals insecurity already, with extra anticipated to hitch this 12 months, in response to the UN’s meals company.

Because it stands, Nigeria is dwelling to the biggest inhabitants of poor folks worldwide. As many as 4 out of 10 folks stay on lower than a greenback a day – beneath the poverty line.


4 in ten Nigerians stay beneath the poverty line. (Al Jazeera)

Meal prices have risen sharply. The price of making a pot of jollof, for instance – a rice dish that’s beloved throughout Nigeria’s quite a few tribes – has doubled within the final six years.

A pot for a household of 5 – the nationwide common – has gone from costing about N4000 (naira), or $9.6, in 2016 to greater than N8,500 ($20.5) in March this 12 months, representing a little bit greater than a 100 per cent enhance.

In some components of the nation, these costs went as excessive as N10,000 ($24.1), in response to Nigerian sociopolitical agency SBM Intelligence.

Meals prices on the finish of March have been even greater than in 2020 when COVID shutdown shocks hit Nigeria and induced a frenzied hike. The most recent costs mirror the best will increase on file.

Hovering meals costs

The value of rice, a staple eaten by Nigerian households virtually day by day, has elevated a number of instances up to now years. In 2016, earlier than low oil costs compelled Nigeria right into a recession, a 50 kg bag of rice price about N14,000-15,000.

At present, these costs have virtually doubled, reaching N25,000-28,000.

The price of making jollof rice, considered one of West Africa’s beloved dishes and a standard meal throughout Nigeria, has greater than doubled in about 5 years. [Al Jazeera/(SBM Intelligence) (PDF)]


Tomatoes have additionally been affected, in addition to meat and poultry merchandise. Many consumers are chopping again on consumption, merchants say. Whereas some are opting to have tinier items of meat on their meals – akin to going from a bun-sized chunk to sugar dice cuts – others are swapping meat for eggs, a less expensive supply of protein.

Different staples

Different staples like garri – a cassava byproduct produced domestically – have seen dramatic value swings too, with a small bowl now costing N1000 ($2.4), up from N350 ($.84) in 2016.

Bean prices shot up by more than 100 percent up to now 12 months alone, an unprecedented rise. A 50kg bag costing N41,500 ($100.2) in 2020 offered for N100,000 ($241.5) in 2021.

Bread has been a tad steadier, with a loaf shifting from N300 ($.72) in 2019 to N400 ($.96) this 12 months, though many complain of noticeable reductions in sizes. Nigeria’s bakers said in April {that a} value enhance is probably going due to rising flour prices.

Change charges: Official vs Black market

Nigeria’s present woes stem largely from acute international change shortages due to its overreliance on gas exports. Crude oil accounts for as much as 90 percent of exports.

However oil slumps in 2020 amid the pandemic hammered the nation’s international reserves and pulled Nigeria right into a second recession in 4 years. The naira continues to be struggling to get better regardless of the central financial institution’s a number of devaluations and heavy restrictions on greenback provide for imports.

Though oil costs have risen since 2020, Nigeria just isn’t benefiting from the brand new yields. There’s much less crude oil to export due to infrastructure deficits and large oil theft within the Niger Delta, its crude heartland.

Crude oil output slipped from 1.42 million barrels per day in 2021 to 1.2 million barrels per day in 2022. Shell and Exxon Mobil have introduced exit plans due to a myriad of points from oil theft to insecurity, within the oil trade.

Then there’s the a number of change fee regime which makes it troublesome to trace the actual worth of the naira. On the official market, the naira is pegged at 414 to the greenback however on the black market the place many companies get their provide from, the peg is at 593.

The official fee is at variance with the black market charges, broadly believed to be nearer to the true worth of the naira to the greenback. (Al Jazeera)


Supply: Official rates;

Rising power costs

Regardless of being Africa’s largest oil producer, Nigeria regularly experiences shortage.

All 4 of the nation’s refineries are barely practical from years of corruption and neglect, forcing Abuja to spend $7bn yearly on importing gas and protecting costs artificially low, straining nationwide coffers.

President Muhammadu Buhari’s authorities has tried to take away the subsidies however failed, fearing a repeat of livid nationwide protests that rocked the nation in 2012 after an abrupt elimination despatched costs as much as N141 ($0.38) per litre from N65 ($0.15).

In March, scenes of motorists queuing up at gas stations grew to become frequent after a pointy enhance in gas pump costs attributable to international provide disruptions because the Ukraine conflict bit down arduous.

Amid the disaster, Nigeria imported gas with excessive ranges of methanol unsafe to be used, resulting in a protracted shortage. On the similar time, the nationwide grid collapsed, plunging Nigeria’s already dismal electrical energy technology to virtually nothing.

The nation’s poor electrical energy provide – 4000 megawatts in contrast with South Africa’s 58,000 megawatts – has been a bane for people and companies who should depend on petrol and diesel-powered turbines for electrical energy.

Gasoline stations offered a litre of gasoline between N162 ($0.39) and N200 ($0.48). However many individuals turned to the less-crowded black markets the place prices have been as excessive as N400 ($0.96). In 2019, a litre of petrol offered for about N145 ($.35).

In the meantime, diesel costs have risen by 129.1% from March 2021.

Lengthy-battered financial system

Nigeria’s financial system has been seeing a battering since 2016 when it recorded the worst meals value inflation in 4 a long time following a worldwide oil value droop to 13-year lows. The nation has hardly recovered from that recession, the World Financial institution says.

Issues worsened when the Buhari administration restricted imports of sure gadgets like rice and poultry aiming to drive native manufacturing and consumption however inadvertently driving up meals costs.

The federal government shut land borders in 2019 to stem the smuggling of commodities from neighbouring Benin Republic.

Simply as many tailored to the upper costs, the coronavirus pandemic hit in March 2020, gorgeous the financial system right into a recession once more. Nigeria’s inflation ranges have been among the world’s highest that 12 months.

An uptick in native rice manufacturing reveals the federal government’s plan partially labored however there are nonetheless wide gaps in satisfying native demand.

Worsening insecurity

Insecurity is presently the largest driver of excessive meals costs, Ayodeji Ebo, head of Afrinvest Securities, informed Al Jazeera.

Rising violence ranges throughout a few of Nigeria’s food-producing states within the northwest, northeast and center belt zones have despatched farmers scampering and led to heightened jostling for scarce meals.

The perpetrators are factions of the phobia group Boko Haram and armed bandits. Many farmers have been wounded or killed in assaults. The insecurity disaster has additionally affected meals transportation as kidnappers prowl Nigeria’s highways.

The mixed challenges of low exports, insecurity and infrastructure gaps might push 19.4 million Nigerians right into a meals disaster by August, the UN’s meals company stated. The company warned in March that 14.5 million Nigerians are already meals insecure, lots of them internally displaced individuals in northeast, northwest and central areas.

Though the Worldwide Financial Fund forecasts a gross home product development of three.4 p.c by 2023 (in contrast with -1.8 in 2020), specialists say meals inflation developments are more likely to proceed with out vital safety intervention.

“To decrease the worth of meals gadgets, insecurity has to enhance,” Ebo says. “If drastic measures will not be taken there shall be much less funding within the nation.”


Further reporting was contributed by Festus Iyorah from Lagos, Nigeria.

Knowledge Sources: 

  • Nigeria Bureau of Statistics (NBS)
  • SBM intelligence
  • Survey by Al Jazeera journalists in a Lagos market
  • Dataphyte

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