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HomeCountriesWest Africa › Nigeria

Nigeria Country AET Profile

About Nigeria

Projected adult illiteracy rates for the year 2000 stand at 35.9% (males, 27.7%; females, 43.8%). As of 1995, public expenditure on education was 0.5% of GDP.

The advancement in education in the southern states, compared with the relative lag in the northern states, reflects the contribution of Christian missions to the Nigerian educational system. Teacher-training colleges are operated by missions or voluntary societies; their schools, however, are regulated and largely supported by the government.

There are 13 polytechnic colleges and four colleges of technology. A major obstacle to the further advancement of education in Nigeria is the shortage of qualified teachers; large numbers of foreigners are employed, particularly by the universities.

In terms of employment, agriculture is by far the most important sector of Nigeria's economy, engaging about 70% of the labor force. Agricultural holdings are generally small and scattered; farming is often of the subsistence variety, characterized by simple tools and shifting cultivation. These small farms produce about 80% of the total food. About 30.7 million hectares (76 million acres), or 33% of Nigeria's land area, are under cultivation. Nigeria's diverse climate, from the tropical areas of the coast to the arid zone of the north, make it possible to produce virtually all agricultural products that can be grown in the tropical and semitropical areas of the world. The economic benefits of large-scale agriculture are recognized, and the government favors the formation of cooperative societies and settlements to encourage industrial agriculture. Large-scale agriculture, however, is not common. Despite an abundant water supply, a favorable climate, and wide areas of arable land, productivity is restricted owing to low soil fertility in many areas and inefficient methods of cultivation. Agriculture contributed 32% to GDP in 2001.

Institutions in Nigeria

Reports on Nigeria
Nigeria - Current Student Enrolment and Academic Staffing



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