Good People, after the piece which took our national challenge home, after I explained, using Aliko Dangote, on how Nigerians are getting poorer, one of our Senators responded with a question, “How Can Nigeria Stabilize the Naira?” I was in the National Assembly late last year and made my points. I have sent the slides to the Distinguished Senator. Of course no one is saying that there is a magic wand to fix Nigeria’s problems.
Yet, we all agree that we cannot get to the mountaintop overnight, as the effects of today are largely related to the negligence of many years ago. And fixing Nigeria would mean freezing those negligence elements.The universities are still on strike! Typically, after long strikes, virus or no virus, most students do not return, and Nigeria does not seem to care on the economic impacts of these strikes.
Nigeria will not rise solely from Abuja but from what Kano, Lagos, Onitsha and other cities can do with the help from Abuja. I will send a formal Brief to the Senator but I did also send this piece I wrote in Harvard Business Review on African development and the case study of China. There is abundance in Nigeria; we need to unlock it. Then, Naira will feel good.
As robotics and AI advance, most countries will keep their production processes at home, eliminating the need for cheaper labor abroad. In this redesign, Africa’s competitor is not China; robots and AI are the real competitors. Africa can no longer depend on global manufacturing to become industrialized, nor can it simply mimic China’s policies. But if Africa educates its citizens, integrates effectively on trade and currency, and improves intra-African trade, its industries can compete at least to serve its local markets. Where that happens, Africa can attain industrialization faster by scaling indigenous innovations and utilizing AI as enablers.