An Appraisal of Natural Resources and Socio-economic Development: The Nigerian Case 

E. Airhunmwunde


 Nigeria has abundant natural resources to compare with other nations of the world. How do such natural resources compare with those of other countries at different stages of development? Do the existences of these natural resources guarantee socio-economic development? What exactly is the problem of Nigeria? Most importantly, to what extent is Nigeria’s development a function of its natural resources? Relying on international data sources and empirical research, a sample of twenty countries exhibiting a variety of patterns of natural resources and development were selected at random. Development and natural resources as composite variables were illustrated and measured with COPO-DEV Model as measureable in a non-conventional but more meaningful manner. The outcome indicates that there is no conventional thread relationship between natural resources and socio-economic developments because the phenomenon works differently, depending on whether consideration is on developing, newly industrialized, or developed countries. Moreover, the study also revealed that there is a link between Nigeria’s international trade and world poverty; whose prospects well beyond the turn of the century appear gloomy. The better supported, emerging industrializing countries of East Asia and Latin America, where the “prime of development” is rising, paints a divergent picture and revealed growth at an extraordinary momentum. Additionally, a tale of contrasting fortune between the comparisons of two selected countries indicated how long term annual economic growth showed a negative domestic investment translated into marked decline in economic growth.

Keywords: Natural resources; Socio-economic development; Developing countries; COPO-DEV Model, Nigeria