Nigeria Economic Development and the Position of Technology

It has been established that one of the fattest ways a nation can attain growth and development is by technological innovation and development and not by the level of its endowed natural resources, nor that of its vast human resources. A nation’s economic efficiency is determined, measured, compared, classified and ranked by its technological advancement.
 
From historical perspective, America made aggressive efforts to recoup from the defeat it suffered in the hands of Japan during after the First World War. It used sophisticated laboratory science equipments to set itself free from cold war enemy and successfully conquered the Japanese in the Second World War. Since then, American has become the world’s leading industrial giant which almost every nation in the globe respect.
 
Despite the American nuclear attack on the Japanese population, material and other economic resources, the nation strategically reformed through the technological innovation and currently competes with her former allies for the largest economy position.
 
China is a country that has experienced natural disasters, political instability and with the world largest population among others, the country currently extends its industrial relation to different nations across the globe.
 
The above referenced nations should be enough to serve as the technological models to Nigeria as a giant of Africa.
 
If nations are ranked according to their population distributions, China would also have emerged as the largest economies as it is blessed with vast human resources. If nations are ranked according to their natural resources, Nigeria would have emerged the second global leading economy as the nation is blessed with abundant natural resources.
 
However, in the modern world, countries are not developed according to their endowment of resources but according to how far a nation has made effective use of its limited resources to solve not only its internal economic problems but also the global ones.
 
Should nations be ranked as developing ones in order of their importation of natural resources level, the current industrial giant America would be best fitted in the mostly underdeveloped position, followed by Japan with tiny natural resources.
 
America has applied wisdom in their importation, as it centers its import needs mainly on industrial inputs. It processes the imported raw materials and exports a larger percentage of it back to the same nations that were originally endowed with the resources but lack the practical skills and talents to achieve such development.
 
Hence, should nations be economically positioned in order of their practical skills and efficiencies, America is fitted in its current position, followed by Japan which has consistently improved in heavy industrial productions, and China which has effectively utilized its endowed of large human resources and tactically produces about 95% of global electronics, while Dubai would be forth as it has been  able to put in place enabling environment  which magnets global investors across the globe to the economy and strategically diverts the enormous returns toward structural technological  development which thereby paves way for additional developmental opportunities in both capital and human resources in the region.
 
Besides, if nations are ranked based on theoretical skills and talents, there should be no doubt that Nigeria, the giant of Africa would be topmost among other countries that could be mentioned or counted in such realm.
 
Nigeria is one of America’s targets when it comes to crude oil importation, this it uses to satisfy both its industrial and population needs, despite the surrounding limitations, constant price increase, and unequal distribution of the product among Nigerians.
 
As usual the question remains; given the level of our theoretical knowledge and intelligence, how can Nigeria attain an speedy industrial independency? Normally, a logical question of this nature always yields different answers—which are mostly centered on formal education, regarding the views of the plebiscites.
 
If we are to rely on formal education for the attainment of our industrial efficiency, Nigeria may for long depend on technological efficiencies to answer for its basic economic needs; as our education systems now proud to produce nothing, but theoretical knowledge.
 
In a South Korea, recent account show where a group of a university engineering graduating students summoned their intellectualities and came out with new global automobile discovery cherished motor vehicles, Kia motors which to be tendered to the university as their final year project. Nigeria seems to have different reports; as our graduates of science such as engineering, physics, chemistry submit sheet of papers containing their theoretical innovation to their respective departments as the final year projects.
 
In this country we have science and technology ministry coupled with other technological agencies, but science and technology researches are financial intensive and requires brains having not mainly theoretical experiences, but practical. The same problem is identified with educational institutions where research and development materials and equipment are lacking, poorly funded and subsequently leading to practical frameworks to be taught as the theories.
 
One could imagine what Nigeria will do with all the theories which it has failed to put in practice. For this nation to witness effective and fast development technologically; there is the need to put sufficient research and development fund in place at educational and administrative levels.
 
Abubakar Jimoh
University of Abuja; abujimoh01 @yahoo.com

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