Industrialization In West Africa: Role And Problems


Table Of Contents

  • Meaning Of Industrialization
  • Role Of Industrialization On Economic Development Of West Africa
  • Factors That Promote Industrialization
  • Problems Of Industrialization In West Africa
  • Efforts Made By Government For Promotion Of Industrialization In West Africa

Industrialization focuses attention on the efforts made by countries towards the improvement of their liabilities in transforming raw materials into finished products or factor input.

These efforts are often manifested through various economic activities which are biased towards the establishment of industries. It therefore lays emphasis on industrial development.

Role Of Industrialization On Economic Development Of West Africa

1. Raises The National Income

Industrialization raises the National output through increased productivity of the factors of production. This will rise the National Income.

2. Creation Of Employment Opportunities

Industrialization leads to establishment of industries which will provide employment opportunities to the people.

3. Standard Of Living Is Raised

As industrialization raises output, per capital income will also rise. This will raise standard of living of West Africans.

4. Improves Adverse Balance Of Payment

Adverse balance of payment problem will be solved through industrialization which will intensity exportation and discourage importation.

5. Diversification Of Economy

With industrialization, over dependency over one or two agricultural products exportation will be reduced. Manufactured products can be exported to other countries in addition. This will improve the foreign Exchange earning position.

6. Political And Economic Independence

Industrialization can usher in some degrees of political and economic independence to West Africa.

Factors That Promote Industrialization

1. Political Stability

Political peace is basic requirement to industrialization.

2. Degree Of Interest In Investment

More industries can spring up in area where the people are interested in investment. A higher degree of such interest will promote industrialization.

3. Availability of Raw Materials.

4. Availability of Large Market.

5. Adequate Supply Of Skilled Man Power

Industrialization operates better in an area with adequate supply of skilled man power. In such area the industrialization is facilitated and skilled man power recruitment is easy.

6. Capital

Industrialization requires adequate supply of capital for its operation, Areas with abundant capital attracts industrialization.

7. Availability of Social Infrastructural facilities.

8. Accessibility to Foreign Exchange.

9. Developed Capital And Money Markets

Industrialization operates better in the areas where there are developed capital and money markets. This will facilitate both medium and long term loans attainment.

Problems Of Industrialization In West Africa

1. Inadequate Social And Industrial Infrastructures

Public utilities like power supply, water supply, telecommunications, are inadequate.

2. Inadequate Capital

Low income per capital couples with high propensity to consume have adversely affected capital formation in West Africa.

3. Political Instability

Most of West Africa countries have experienced some forms of political instability. This does not encourage industrialists.

4. Shortage Of Raw Materials

This situation retards the development of industries especially those that depend on foreign raw materials.

5. Shortage Of Skilled Man Power

Highly skilled man power necessary for industrialization is in short supply. For instance, most of the existing industries in West Africa still recruit their technician from foreign countries, for minor repairs.

6. Limited Market

Small population couple with low income per capita limits the size of West Africa market.

7. Under Developed Capital And Money Markets

Financial institutions are not enough for the industrialization. Long and medium term loans are not easily procured by indigenous industrialists for industrial ventures.

8. Poor Transportation System

It is true that some countries have attempted to improve this, adequate maintenance services are not provided. This militates against efficient delivery of Industrial products.

Efforts Made By Government For promotion Of Industrialization In West Africa

1. Colleges, Universities, and other tertiary institutions have been established for man power training and development.

2. Provision of infrastructures like Good roads, ports, electricity, water supply, telecommunication and industrial estates have been produced for industrialization.

3. Granting of tax incentives.

4. Provision for raw materials.

5. Establishment Of Industrial Development Banks

Industrial development Banks have been established for procurement of medium and long term loans.

6. Trade Fairs

Trade fairs have been organized by Governments to facilitate industrial products promotion or advertisement.

7. Industrial Researches Organized

Many research centres have been created by Federal Government of Nigeria. Researches have been funded by the Government and their outcome are made available to the industrialists through publications, work shops etc.

8. Commercial Banks Control

Some effective loan policy directives have been issued out to the commercial banks in favour of certain productive sectors of the economy.

9. Nigeria Enterprise Promotion Decree

The decree has encourage indigence to participate in the industrial development of their country.

10. Direct Government Participation

Government have participated in the establishment of basic industries whose products serve as input in other industries.