Poverty and Inequality in Nigeria: Implications for Inclusive Growth

Ajibola Akinyemi, Loto Magareth, Enilolobo Oluwafemi


The study empirically examined poverty and inequality in Nigeria with respect to its implications for inclusive growth from 1980 to 2013. Uni-directional causality was found from Poverty (POV) to Growth Rate of Gross Domestic Product (GGDP);Government Expenditure on Health (GEXPH) to Inequality (measured by PCI); Government Expenditure on Education (GEXPED) to PCI; Unemployment (UNEMP) to GEXPH and UNEMP to PCI, no causality was found between POV and PCI (Inequality). Johansen co-integration test revealed evidence of long-run co-integration. GGDP and GEXPH impacts positively on PCI (inequality) but negatively on POV, while PCI impacts negatively on POV. Thus, as the economy grows, public spends more money to improve health services, inequality rises and poverty reduces. GEXPED impacts negatively on PCI (inequality) but positively on POV contrary to theory, a situation where more education failed to lead to quality jobs and improved standard of living.  The study therefore recommends policies and strategies aimed at improving access to quality health facilities and educational opportunities with increased job creating opportunities should be pursued.


Poverty; Inequality; Inclusive Growth; Nigeria

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.20321/nilejbe.v4i9.160


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