Despite the ongoing economic recession and rising unemployment rate in Nigeria, the labour productivity index showed labour activities surged to a new height in 2016.
The figure released by the National Bureau of Statistics revealed that the Labour Productivity Index climbed by 10.8 percent in 2016. Making it the highest since the first quarter of 2015.
While labour productivity in the fourth quarter rose to N783.51 from N713.77 recorded in the third quarter. The total number of hours worked increased by 0.48 percent between the third and final quarter of 2016, indicating that while output remains subdued, labour productivity surged due to the relative stable power supply during the period under review.
“While the overall level of productivity was high, there were several challenges that generally impacted on output and labour, and indirectly on labour productivity, keeping it below optimal levels. Some of these issues faced during the quarter were issues that spilled over from Q1 through Q2 and Q3 2016,” the NBS report stated.
“Investment in the economy was still relatively low; though some government investments were recorded during the quarter, the volume of private investment and foreign direct investments was still considerably low compared to previous years.
“Power was relatively stable during the quarter, which partly accounted for the increase in labour productivity, but was still lower than the required levels.”
The economy contracted by 0.5 percent in the first quarter of the year, while the consumer prices improved to 17.24 percent in April. The labour market slacked further to 14.2 percent unemployment rate in the final quarter of 2016 from the 13.9 percent recorded in the third quarter of 2016.