As one of the most efficient tools for growth and development, export promotion policy has been taken by many countries since 1970 (Oyetade, 2016). The role of exports in economic growth and the relationship between these two have been the subject of a wide range of empirical and theoretical studies in international trade and economic development field. As stated by Abou-Stait (2005), the argument concerning the role of exports as one of the main deterministic factors of economic growth goes back to the classical economic theories by Adam Smith and David Ricardo.

Although most recent literatures claim that export growth promotes overall economic growth and that there is strong relationship between these two variables and that exports expansion contributes to the rate of economic growth (Homayounifar and Rastegari (2008), Usman and Salami (2008)), this is not the case for Nigeria. Osuntogun et al (1997) note that one major characteristic of Nigeria’s export trade is the continued reliance on developed countries as markets. This market concentration has been blamed, in part, for the countries misfortunes, as recessions in developed countries are usually fully transmitted to Nigeria. Osuntogun et al (1997) maintain that the negative effects from such shocks can be minimized by diversifying export markets, especially since the level of economic activity is likely to vary across regions. They argue that the export promotion policy stance, which also emphasizes the diversification of markets, appears not to be yielding desired results because exports to Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries still dominate.

So, from the period the Structural Adjustment programme was introduced in Nigeria, concerted efforts had been made to diversify Nigerian export sector by promoting non-oil exports (Ogbonna et al, 2013; Okafor, 2016). The importance of this sub-sector cannot be over-emphasised. Nigeria’s non-oil exports which can broadly be classified into three, namely: agricultural produce, manufactured exports and solid minerals has great potentials. It is only of recent that the export potential of solid minerals was brought to the fore. The interest to promote non-oil exports was borne out of not just its huge potentials for foreign exchange earning, but also for its employment generation and poverty reduction capability through the extensive backward linkages it offers as well as the desire to diversify the country’s production base. According to Iyoha and Oriakhi (2002), in spite of SAP, the well-publicized attempts to diversify the economy have not been successful.

Although Harb (2008) found that oil revenues have no long-run effect on the macro performance of the economy and as such, cannot be blamed for a bad performance of the economy, Zafar (2004) argues that volatility has become a prominent and endemic feature of the world economy, and pronounced fluctuations in commodity prices, especially oil, have had a negative effect on the macroeconomic performance of many developing countries. He stressed that the management of volatility is very difficult in oil-exporting countries in the developing world because fiscal revenue and macroeconomic performance are highly sensitive to fluctuations in the international oil price.

The year 2009 was overcast by the global financial and economic crisis, which was precipitated in August 2007 by the collapse of the sub-prime lending market in the United States. The crisis led to the crash of most other sectors and markets across Europe with consequent effect on developing economies especially oil-export dependent countries like Nigeria. The impact was aggravated by the reduction in crude oil production, due to the persistent restiveness in the Niger Delta region and pipeline vandalism and theft.
The spiral effect of the global economic crisis on Nigerian economy continued in 2009 with the exorbitant lending rate mounting pressure on the stock market as a result of massive borrowed fund in the market. The rush by stock investors to liquidate their investment to repay their loans in order to avoid the excessive lending rate caused the Nigerian stock market to crash. This decline was also driven by concerns over unrealistically high valuations in practically all sectors. Regulatory intervention in the equities market only served to dent investor confidence further, especially among institutional investors, as the measures failed to address the fundamental issues. The devastating effects of the recent crash of crude oil price at the international oil market in 2014-2016 did not only caused fiscal imbalance in Nigeria, it forced the country to slip into its first recession in twenty-five years.

It is evident from the foregoing that the global economic crisis and the recent crash of crude oil price at the international oil market have further revealed that Nigerian economy is excessively exposed to external shocks. Although various factors have been adduced to Nigeria’s poor economic performance, the major problem has been the economy’s continued excessive reliance on the fortunes of the oil market and the failed attempts to achieve any meaningful economic diversification, reflecting the effect of the so-called “Dutch disease”. The need to correct the existing structural distortions and put the economy on the path of sustainable growth is therefore compelling.

A review of the Federal Government revenue profile in the last half-decade showed that oil earnings accounted for over 80.0 per cent of the foreign exchange earnings, while the non-oil sector, despite its improved performance, contributed 20.1 per cent (CBN, 2010), thus revealing the extent of the vulnerability of the economy to swings in the price of oil in the international market. The renewed emphasis on the production of Shale oil in the United States and other alternatives to fossil-fuel energy, such as solar, wind and bioenergy in the advanced economies, has reduces oil demand and price, and further weaken Nigerian earnings. Thus, in the absence of concerted efforts to shore-up and widen the revenue base, there will be reduction in crude oil revenue and excess crude oil receipts savings in the coming years with grave macroeconomic implications.

The performance of the non-oil export sector in the past three decades leaves little or nothing to be desired, in spite of the efforts to promote non-oil exports in Nigeria (Ekesiobi et al. 2016). Abogan, et al. (2014) note that an assessment of the trend and patterns of activities in the non-oil sector of Nigeria revealed that despite the various policies, strategies and reform programmes, the contributions of the sub-sectors of this sector have been dismal, disheartening and below its full potential. The share of non-oil export in the country’s total export earnings has remained very low and it was 1% in 2008 (CBN, 2008), and up at 7.5% in 2015 (CBN, 2015). Ezeudu (2014) notes that recent proactive efforts from the private sector, export processing free zone scheme and Nigeria Export and Import Bank (NEX1M) especially efforts of the banking sector to finance exportation of commodities are becoming noticeable in the nation’s export profile, with the traditional commodities like cocoa, being upstaged by new ones like cashew nut, ginger and sesame seed in the foreign market.

The policy concern over the years has therefore been to expand non-oil export in a bid to diversify the nation’s export base (Adedipe, 2004). The diversification of the Nigerian economy is necessary for important reasons. First, the volatility of the international oil market with the attendant volatility of government revenue gives credence to any argument for diversification of exports. Secondly, the fact that crude oil is an exhaustible asset makes it unreliable for sustainable development of the Nigerian economy (Utomi, 2004). Rezaie (2013) maintains that the necessity of escaping from the single product exports and getting rid of its problems, diversifying in export products, providing currency for investment and increasing the share in international trade and international markets clearly shows the importance of non-oil exports. Nwidobie (2014) posits that non-oil exports contribute to export diversification and serve as a channel for poverty reduction.

The continued unimpressive performance of the non-oil sector and the vulnerability of the external sector thus dictate the urgent need for a reappraisal of the thrust and contents of the development policies and commitments to their implementation. Indeed, the need for a change in the policy focus and a shift in the industrialization strategy is imperative, if Nigerian economy is to be returned to the path of sustainable growth and external viability. This raises the question of the role of the non-oil export has in the economic growth of the country and what factors are responsible for the performance/or otherwise of the non-oil sector. This calls for new thoughts and initiatives, which is the essence of this project.

According to the objectives stated above, the research questions that would be examined in the course of the study are as follows:
1. What has been the structure of the non-oil export of Nigeria and to what extent has it contributed to her economic growth?
2. What has been the performance of past government policies and programmes at revamping the non-oil export of Nigeria?
3. What macroeconomic factors are responsible for the performance/or otherwise of the non-oil export of Nigeria?

The broad objective of this study is to appraise the viability of the Nigerian Non-oil sector in the diversification of Nigeria’s export. The specific objectives of the study are as follows:
(i) to analyse the contribution of non-oil export to the economic growth of Nigeria;
(ii) to evaluate past efforts at revamping the non-oil export of Nigeria;
(iii) to identify the macroeconomic factors that are responsible for the performance/or otherwise of the non-oil sector of Nigeria.

The analysis that will be made in this project shall be based on time series data for the Nigerian non-oil export and macroeconomic data such as the gross domestic product etc. Due to the complex nature of the model formulation, Two-Stage Least Square (TSLS) estimation method would be employed in obtaining the numerical estimates of the coefficients in the models using EViews statistical software. The estimation technique shall based on the co-integration theory that was developed to overcome the problems of spurious correlation often associated with non-stationary time series data.

Two multiple regression models shall be used in the estimation. The first regression model shall seek to investigate the contribution of agricultural non-oil export, manufacturing non-oil export and minerals non-oil export to the Gross Domestic Product of Nigeria while the second model seeks to investigate the contribution of agricultural non-oil export, manufacturing non-oil export and solid minerals non-oil export to the industrial production of Nigeria, which is a better measure of economic growth than Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The estimation period shall be restricted to the period between 1981 and 2015.

Besides the regression analysis, charts and ratio analysis shall also be used to examine the structure and composition of Nigerian non-oil export during the post and pre-SAP era. The data for this study would be obtained mainly from secondary sources; particularly from Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) publications such as the CBN Statistical Bulletin, CBN Annual Reports and Statements of Accounts, CBN Economic and Financial Review Bullion and Bureau of Statistics publications.
The models that would be estimated in the course of this study are stated below:
Yt = c + c1NOEagrt + c2NOEmant + c3NOEmint + c4Yt-1 + Ei
Where Yt - Gross Domestic Product for current year
NOEagrt - Agricultural component of Non Oil Export
NOEmant - Manufacturing component of Non Oil Export
NOEmint - Solid Minerals component of Non Oil Export
Yt-1 - Gross Domestic Product for previous year
c, c1, c2, c3, c4 - Constants
Ei - Error term

Iindt = d + d1NOEagrt + d2NOEmant + d3NOEmint + d4Yt-1 + Ei
Where Iindt - Index of industrial production for current year
NOEagrt - Agricultural component of Non Oil Export
NOEmant - Manufacturing component of Non Oil Export
NOEmint - Solid Minerals component of Non Oil Export
Yt-1 - Gross Domestic Product for previous year
d, d1, d2, d3, d4 - Constants
Ei - Error term

Based on the models stated above, the hypothesis to be tested in this research is stated below:
H0 - That Non-oil export does not contribute significantly to the economic growth of Nigeria.
H1 - That Non-oil export contributes significantly to the economic growth of Nigeria.

The possibility of the revolution of shale oil taking place in the US in declining government revenue FDC (2013) and the effects of the recent global economic crisis on Nigeria have reaffirmed the urgent need for economic diversification in the country. Although, no country is immune to such global crisis, the over-reliance on oil export revenue by Nigeria exposes her economy excessively to external shocks. Therefore, there is the need to conduct a research of this nature to examine how to strengthen the non-oil sub-sector with linkages to the rest of the economy as safety nets to reinvigorate earnings.
The major significance of this study are as follows:
1. It would provide an econometric assessment of the contribution of non-oil export to the economic growth of Nigeria;
2. It would provide detailed composition of the non-oil export of Nigeria in recent times.
3. The study would also identify the factors that are responsible for the poor performance of the non-oil export of Nigeria over the years.

This thesis focuses on the role of the non-oil export in the diversification of Nigerian economy as necessitated by the devastating effect of the recent global economic crisis. Although, several attempts had been made to diversify the Nigerian economy since the introduction Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) in 1986, no meaningful success has been achieved. Therefore, this thesis would examine the trend and composition of non-oil export of Nigeria during the post and pre-SAP era as well as its export profile. Subsequently, the causes and consequences of the neglect of the non-oil export shall be identified. The study would also investigate the contribution of the non-oil export to the economic growth of Nigeria with data spanning from 1981 to 2015.

This project shall be divided into five chapters. The first chapter provides the background of the subject matter justifying the need for the study. Chapter two shall present related literature concerning the role of non-oil export in economic growth. The structure of non-oil export of Nigeria during the pre and post SAP era shall also be discussed. The research methodology shall then be stated in chapter three while data presentation and analysis shall be made in chapter four. Concluding comments in chapter five shall reflect on the summary, conclusion and recommendations based on the findings of the study.

Abogan, O. P.; Akinola, E. B. and Baruwa, O. I. (2014) “Non-oil export and Economic growth in Nigeria (1980-2011)”. Journal of Research in Economics and International Finance (JREIF). Vol. 3, no. 1, pp. 1-11.
Abou-Stait, F. (2005) “Are Exports the Engine of Economic Growth? An Application of Cointegration and Causality Analysis for Egypt, 1977-2003”. African Development Bank, Economic Research Working Paper. No 76, July.
Adedipe, B. (2004) “The Impact of Oil on Nigeria’s Economic Policy Formulation”. A paper presented at the conference on Nigeria: Maximizing Pro-poor Growth: Regenerating the Socio-economic Database, organized by Overseas Development Institute in collaboration with the Nigerian Economic Summit Group, 16th / 17th June.
Central Bank of Nigeria (2008) Statistical Bulletin, Golden Jubilee Edition, December, 2008.
Central Bank of Nigeria (2015) Statistical Bulletin. Abuja: Central Bank of Nigeria.
Central Bank of Nigeria (2010) Annual Report for the Year Ended 31st December. Abuja: Central Bank of Nigeria.
Central Bank of Nigeria (2013) Annual Report for the Year Ended 31st December. Abuja: Central Bank of Nigeria.
Central Bank of Nigeria (2015) Annual Report for the Year Ended 31st December. Abuja: Central Bank of Nigeria.
Ekesiobi C. S.; Maduka A. C.; Onwuteaka I. C. and Akamobi O. G. (2016) “Modelling Non – Oil Exports and Foreign Reserves in Nigeria”. Developing Country Studies. Vol. 6, no. 6, pp. 126-132.
Ezeudu, I. J. (2014) “Evaluation of Non-Oil Contribution in Export Financing the Development of Nigeria's Economy: An Empirical Analysis of Export Processing Zone”. Research Journal of Finance and Accounting. Vol. 5, no. 6, pp. 58-63.
Financial Derivatives Company Limited (2013) “Global Economy and Nigeria”. Bi-Monthly Economic and Business Update. Vol. 1, issue 31, pp. 1-5.
Harb, N. (2008) “Oil Exports, Non Oil GDP and Investment in the GCC Countries”. Munich Personal Repec Archive (MPRA) Paper. No. 15576. Online at
Homayounifar, M and Rastegari, F. (2008) “Analysis of Economic-Political factors affecting Non-oil Export of Iran”. American-Eurasian Journal of Agriculture and Environmental Science. 2(supplement 1): 16-173.
Iyoha, M. A. and Oriakhi, D. (2002) “Explaining African Economic Growth Performance: The Case of Nigeria.” A Revised Interim Report on Nigerian Case Study prepared for the African Economic Research Consortium Research, May.
Nwidobie, B. M. (2014) “Growth in Nigeria’s Non-Oil Export Finance and Non-Oil Export Performance: A Correlational Analysis”. International Journal of Business and Social Research (IJBSR). Vol. 4, no. 2, pp. 31-39.
Ogbonna, I. C.; Uwajumogu, N. R.; Chijioke, G. and Agu, S. V. (2013) “Economic Globalization: Its Impact on the Growth of Non-Oil Supply in Nigeria”. Journal of Economics and Sustainable Development. Vol.4, no.7, pp. 66-74.
Okafor S. O.; Akandu V. C. and Ike A. N. (2016) “Non-oil Export – Growth Nexus in Nigeria: Macroeconomic Base for Non-oil Export- LED Growth Policy”. British Journal of Economics, Management and Trade. Vol. 14, no. 1, pp. 1-18.
Osuntogun, A., Edordu, C. C. and Oramah, B. O. (1997) “Potentials for diversifying Nigeria’s non-oil exports to non-traditional markets”. AERC Research Paper. No. 68, November.
Oyetade P. O.; Shri D. A. and NorAzam R. (2016) “Agricultural Export, Oil Export and Economic Growth in Nigeria: Multivariate Co-integration Approach”. International Journal of Environmental & Agriculture Research (IJOEAR). Vol. 2, iss. 2, pp. 64-72.
Rezaie, M. (2013) “Factors Affecting Non-Oil Exports”. Kuwait Chapter of Arabian Journal of Business and Management Review. Vol. 2, no. 5, pp. 17-23.
Usman, O. A. and Salami, A. O. (2008) “The Contribution of Nigerian Export-Import (NEXIM) bank towards Export (non-oil) Growth in Nigeria (1990-2005)”. International Business Management. Vol. 2, no. 3, pp. 85-90.
Utomi Pat (2004) “The Curse of Oil”. A Paper delivered for Heinrich Böll Foundation Oil-Conference by Lagos Business School, May.
Zafar, A. (2004) “What happens when a country does not adjust to terms of trade shocks? - the case of oil-rich gabon”. World Bank Policy Research, Working Paper. No. 3403, September.

Thesis Status
Number of Chapters
Number of Pages
Number of Words
Number of References
Thesis Level
N40,000 - Forty Thousand Naira (Non-Negotiable)
Abstract, Regression Data and Results are included
B.Sc. version of this Thesis is available - CLICK HERE
How to Pay for this Thesis. . . .CLICK HERE

Keywords: nigeria economic growth, economic growth in nigeria, nigerian economic growth, exporting to nigeria, economic growth statistics, economic growth data, sources of economic growth





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