This chapter is an introductory chapter that delves into issues related to globalization. In other words, it introduces the key concepts and reviews that would be discussed in the entire paper. The chapter presents the background information regarding the effects of globalization in Nigeria. Under the background information, the extent at which globalization affects the locals in the Nigerian economy is discussed in detail. The chapter contains the problem statement section whereby the major issues surrounding globalization in Nigeria will be discussed. The first chapter would also discuss the purpose of the study. In the last section, the research hypothesis will be postulated, which will guide the data analysis processes. Globalization means the act of making international decisions that are applicable beyond state borders (Calamitsis 2001, p. 19).In only 3 hours we’ll deliver a custom Globalization for Nigerian Politics and Economics essay written 100% from scratch Get help
This definition appears too impartial, as well as too naive as it falls short of quantifying the implications of the concept and the actual meaning of the concept as extensively comprehended in the current international system. Based on this fact, the consequence of globalization on Nigeria’s financial and political changes cannot be understood accurately unless an all-inclusive definition of the concept observed universally is brought into focus. One of the most recent political conceptions and principles, which were created after the First World War, was the premise related to vacuity filling. This premise was formulated after the withdrawal of Britain from the Middle East or more specifically the Arab world, just after the conclusion of the First World War. This formed an economic and political space, which had to be filled (Dickey & Fuller 1981, p. 1060). The new hegemony, whose intercession had helped in bringing about the triumph of the allies, had to occupy the space. This burgeoning power had the authority to exercise its independence in not only the Arab world but in other parts of the world (Leo 2006, p. 483).
Despite the fact that it was not a direct permissible power, it was nevertheless a form of academic and artistic independence in both political and economic supremacy (Maku 2007, p. 112). Globalization influences the autonomy of states by intruding on their privileges, incapacitating their public liberty, and impinging the privileges of the state as regards to making their own independent resolutions. Additionally, it eliminates the role of the nation-state, although the state might be benefiting from full independence in accordance with the terms of the global regulation. This form of globalization is what is witnessed presently in the world through some international supremacy. Even though these units are not states, they influence global politics and economics in Nigerian society. Acting through diverse channels that interrelate with the public, these powers take advantage of their unceremonious associations with non-governmental actors and groups ( NGOs), including large-scale institutions, such as global organizations, multinational corporations, and reservoirs such as the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, which enforce outrageous financial policy procedures on the state (Ohmae 1990, p. 134).
In the Nigerian economy, globalization is manifested through privatization of public corporations, deregulation of the economy, and the application of universal policies. The manner in which globalization is applied breeds a number of issues, which cannot be answered through a single question. Industrialized countries, such as the US and Britain, employ these global policies as one way of fulfilling their universal interests. Many organizations operating in Nigeria are foreign-owned meaning that they do not aim at conveying the interests of the Nigerian people. According to realists, the agents of globalization, such as multinational corporations and world financial organizations, are just some of the instruments that the powerful states use to attain their national interests. In this regard, national interests drive states to act in a manner that would be dangerous to the locals. In the international system, there are weak and powerful states, Nigeria is one of the weak states (Obadan 1996, p. 59).
The international system exists according to the Hobbesian state of nature whereby life is anarchic, brutal, short-lived, and nasty. There is no universal government to oversee the affairs of the world (Wolf 2004, p. 12). Powerful states use their influence to force weak states to comply with their policies, irrespective of whether they are oppressive or not. Globalization is just one of the factors that affect the sovereignty of states in the global system because all actors are expected to open up their economies in matters related to trade, security, and development. According to some scholars, such as Ohman, globalization demands that the government privatize major national corporations meaning that people would have to lose jobs while others would be forced to retire even before they attain the retirement age. The English premier Margaret Thatcher introduced the issue of privatization in 1979. A number of scholars, such as Steger, noted that the English premier did not understand the concept in its entirety. In Nigeria, privatization gives foreigners an undue advantage because they are allowed to own shares in all state corporations, which are the backbone of the Nigerian economy (Steger 2002, p. 6). The Nigerian people are left at the mercy of foreigners in the name of promoting globalization. To this extent, it is argued that globalization restricts Nigerian people from achieving their objectives.
According to the world-systems theory, globalization is viewed as one of the factors that have subjugated the African continent to the periphery. The theory states that there is the core and the periphery in any production system. The world is a single production unit that depends on certain fundamental rules and means of production. In this regard, Nigeria is the periphery whereas the MNCs representing powerful states, such as the US and Britain, are the core. Raw materials are obtained from the periphery only to be processed and returned back from the center or the core (Wokoma & Iheriohanma 2010, p. 79). The south or the developing world would not be boosting a productive economy if they were allowed to process their products locally and export finished products. The core will always dominate in the global system because it has improved technology, as well as sufficient capital.
Globalization is a concept that is understood variously in many fields of study. In international relations and political science, the term is mainly used to describe political and economic trends. In this study, the main aim would be to determine whether globalization affects Nigerian society in terms of politics and economics. As earlier noted in the previous sections, globalization has various effects on Nigerian society. The study seeks to establish the extent to which globalization affects political events and the economic development of the country. The study would employ various techniques by first collecting literature and conducting a quantitative study. Analysis of literature and research hypothesis would be helpful in understanding the effects of globalization on politics and economics in Nigeria. The study has a number of research questions, including the following:Academic experts
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- What are the effects of globalization in Nigeria?
- Has globalization failed or succeeded in Nigeria since independence?
- What are the effects of Globalization politically and economically in Nigeria?
Definition of Terms
- Globalization: Globalization is defined as a process of intercontinental assimilation, which comes about as the result of the exchange of worldviews, merchandise, information, and other features of culture. In other words, it can be defined as a process that supports the interchange of nationalized and cultural resources. The advances realized in the transport and communication sectors in the late 1990s encouraged interdependence in terms of financial and cultural activities. Interdependence is mainly attributed to the emergence of the internet. Improved communication and transport systems allow individuals to interact freely meaning that goods and services can be exchanged across borders. In this article, globalization would be used to mean the interactions between people across the world whereby individuals in Nigeria can access goods and services from industrialized countries without necessarily traveling to the industrialized countries. Globalization is made possible through improved technology. Furthermore, multinational organizations are considered agents of globalization in this article.
- Political Globalization: Political globalization is a term that would be used to refer to the increasing trend towards multilateralism in this article. This means that supranational organizations, such as International Monetary Fund, The World Banks, and other UN-affiliated agencies play a significant role in foreign and domestic policy formulation in the country. In the current international system, new trends whereby transnational state apparatus have powers to make and implement policies exist. Regarding political development, new supranational organizations act as watchdogs implying that the state cannot come up with an oppressive policy without receiving criticism from these organizations. In Nigeria, global human rights organizations are common. The state has been forced to act within the law in order to avoid criticisms from these organizations.
- Economic Globalization: Economic globalization implies that there is increased financial interdependence of countries, which has been facilitated by the increase in cross-boundary movement of merchandise, services, knowledge, and investment. In other words, economic globalization allows countries to interact through trade leading to global markets. Production, market availability, and competition characterize economic globalization. Major agents of economic globalization include multinational corporations, modern technologies, and industries. This article explores the effects of economic globalization on the Nigerian society
Theory and Method
The second chapter that is, theory and method explain the theoretical frameworks that would be employed in evaluating the issue of globalization as far as Nigerian economic matters and politics are concerned. The theories would be employed to discuss some of the challenges that globalization presents to the Nigerian economy and the political arena. The chapter would be utilized effectively in discussing the methodology to be employed in discussing the effects of globalization in Nigeria. In this regard, some of the advantages and disadvantages of the method will be given. Globalization is a political concept that has a number of theoretical frameworks or underpinnings. Expansion of trade is one of the fundamental aspects of development that was first discussed by mercantilism. This explanation was then followed by the postulations of Adam Smith and David Ricardo who noted that the state should never intervene in matters touching on trade and the economy in general.
According to the above economists, the market should be given an opportunity to operate in accordance with its own internal logic whereby manufacturers will always check on the consumers to determine their levels of consumption. Radical scholars such as Karl Marx and Fredrick Angel criticized the ideas of Smith and Ricardo on the basis that they valued the product more than the manufacturer. The current review of economic activities taking place in the world reveals that no country or actor in the international system can exist in isolation because the whole world is made up of a single system, with the core and the periphery. This is mainly the reasoning of the world systems theorists who note that the developing countries represent the periphery while developed countries are the core meaning that they determine the economic matters of the whole system. World Systems theory posits that globalization is expected to continue influencing the economic and political matters of many states in many ways (Wokoma & Iheriohanma 2010, p. 81).
The theory singles out globalization as one of the concepts that have influenced both negatively and positively on the lives of individuals in society. In fact, the theories point out that globalization has affected the performance of all economies in the world, including that of Nigeria, which is still struggling to cope with the new challenges. Liberalism is one of the macroeconomic theories that suggest that the world economy is increasingly becoming mutually dependent, expanding, and intensifying global relations, particularly in commerce. The theory further observes that trade has played a significant role as far as the growth of nations is concerned. The theorists holding this view do not approve of the idea of autarky whereby states fail to open up their economies for global investment. The practice of protectionist policies is highly disputed by the theorists who suggest that it hinders the free flow of resources, both human and capital. For there to be a substantial development, the economy should be left to the market forces whereby the internal logic is allowed to flourish (Wokoma & Iheriohanma 2010, p. 84).
According to the theory, globalization took a route in Nigeria after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War in the early 1990s. Liberalization started with the global restructuring whereby firms adopted new systems of administration, as well as technology. For instance, firms outsourced their contracts, and networking was adopted extensively. Actors in the international system adopted similar strategies because of increased competition, the growth of complex technological systems, developing markets, and changing consumer tastes. Firms and governmental organizations were forced to downsize their organizations in order to increase efficiency and competency. In this regard, a number of trends were witnessed, including the formation of alliances, merges, as well as other types of business networks. In Nigeria, all these were mainly done through the assistance of foreign firms and investors.
The problems affecting Nigeria regarding development could be explained using modernization theory. The theory will be utilized in this dissertation to explain whether globalization in Nigeria is a result of the urge to develop as presented by modernist theorists.
Review of Literature
A number of countries embarked on research to establish some of the ways that would help them achieve their economic interests just after independence. Such countries were termed as underdeveloped and shared one major characteristic, which is colonization. They had just attained independence and the major problem was how to develop. In some countries, such as Nigeria, it was believed that the development of industries would boost export and subsequently reduce the overreliance on imports. At the same time, Nigeria was faced with the dilemma of whether to support capitalism or communism, given the fact that the international system was characterized by bipolarity. The political and economic elite in Nigeria adopted capitalism since they believed that development would be achieved through the idea of private ownership of property and the free market. Based on the modernization theory, development was perceived in terms of economic growth. In this regard, it was believed that the creation of industries was the sure way of catching up with the developed world, such as the United States, Britain, and France (Gore 2000, p. 800). Society was expected to adopt ideas that were closely related to those of the west, particularly in terms of designing institutions. The adoption of western cultures, such as opening up the economy for foreign investment, was considered modernization.
To be modern, a country had to construct dams and highways, embrace social changes including the abandonment of cultural beliefs, and institute the modern system of education that relied on science and rationality. Moreover, a state had to engage in political reforms, such as shifting from traditional power to modern power, whereby the will of the majority is represented through parliament. States were encouraged to formulate bureaucracies, as well as other state types of machinery, which would preside over the affairs of society. The theory dominated the international system from the 1950s to the 1990s when criticisms emerged. The theory was formulated based on the biological nature of organisms and later transferred to the study of human behavior. In this regard, each society grows according to a natural order. Development should follow a certain path, contrary to some claims that development is a result of the change, which is mainly constant in any given society (Gore 2000, p. 808). The theory suggests that change should be dynamic whereby actors are expected to initiate them by simply following the successful model. Since Europe and North America were already developed, it was upon the developing countries to emulate the models and techniques that were applied in these developed regions. In Europe, economic development took place following radical measures that brought about industrialization. Therefore, developing countries had no better option other than adopting the modernization model.15% OFF Get your very first custom-written academic paper with 15% off Get discount
Economic development and rapid growth rate challenged the power of the feudal lords that forced them to give up. This gave rise to the creation of the representative government, which guaranteed individual freedoms, the creation of political parties, periodic elections, the respect of law, and egalitarianism. The third world did not have the chance of going through this form of transformation because it was under colonialism. In other words, it was left behind, which explains the underdevelopment state of the third world. Therefore, the third world should put in place measures that would encourage economic and political development. In other words, it should follow the footsteps of the developed world, which is far much ahead in terms of economic development. When the development was being experienced in the developed world, there were many problems, which can be prevented in case the third world accepts to follow a similar path (Gore 2000, p. 812).
An American scholar referred to as Rostow came up with the stages that could spark economic development in his 1960 famous works the stages of economic growth. The five steps could actually ignite development in developing countries, such as Nigeria. He noted that the traditional society should first ensure that power is in the hands of economically oriented leaders before the take-off process can start. Through this, the savings of the country are likely to go up while necessary technology would be realized. Since developing countries are unable to achieve their economic interests independently, the theory suggests that foreign powers should enter into partnerships with the governments of developing countries. This would be made possible through the provision of funds, technology, and markets.
A critical review of modernization theory suggests that it is not homogenous since its supporters disagree over some fundamental issues. The theory focuses mostly on deficiencies in developing countries, such as Nigeria. It suggests some of the ways that can help the poor countries spark development. The traditional society, such as that of society, was viewed as stagnant, unchanging, non-innovative, and unprofitable. Such societies would never achieve their interests related to development and growth. Before the advent of industrialization, a number of people in the world lived in extreme conditions meaning that poverty was prevalent. Even though there were few scientific discoveries in areas such as China, India, and the Middle East, the theory does not appreciate such discoveries. It only states that the models of economic development were invented and were applied successfully in Europe and North America. The main reason behind the development was capitalism, which is related to private ownership of property, liberalized economy, and free movement of capital. Through capitalism, the society was able to acquire adequate technology, which sustained economic development in the west. Capitalism allowed competition, which meant that investors had to be creative and innovative to remain relevant in the market. The costs of important services such as communication came down while the prices of products reduced greatly. Investors were forced to reinvest given the fact profits attained were minimal. Since re-investing was encouraged, there was perpetual accretion of capital, as well as growth, which encouraged development automatically. There was the need for political development since the economy was expanded.
Because modernization theory proved ineffective to suggest some of the ways through which Nigeria could enter the global market, some scholars suggested an alternative theory referred to as dependency theory. Dependency theory emerged to challenge modernization theory after it emerged that the major role of international organizations such as the United Nations, World Bank, and IMF was to fulfill the wishes of the developed countries.
The theory was formulated in Latin America to challenge the views of modernist theories. Gunder Frank, Samir Amin, and Dos Santos were among the scholars who developed and supported the theory. Immanuel Wallerstein developed a closely related theory referred to as world-systems theory to support the ideas of dependency theorists. Theoretically, dependency scholars are just like modernization scholars since they do not agree on certain fundamental principles regarding the theory. One of the major principles of the theory is that world economic problems, such as persistent poverty, cannot be understood without considering the global economic system (Evans & Newnham 1998, p. 88). To dependency scholars, the issue of underdevelopment in the south is not a natural condition, but instead, it is a result of the active process of economic failure related to global development.
In fact, some scholars view underdevelopment in the south and development in the north as the two sides of the same coin. In this regard, it is true that development in the north led to underdevelopment in the south. Many societies in Latin America, Africa, and Asia are poor because the west made them poor. Capitalism led to the ceaseless search for profits. Since the competition was intense in the west, the south was viewed as the potential solution to the increasing competition and diminishing profits. Since raw materials were transported from the south to the north, poverty in the south was inevitable. Since the south had no adequate raw materials after the process of exploitation, it had to depend on the west for economic development. Some scholars have a contrary opinion suggesting that the west has been depending on the south for raw materials, markets, and labor, which has affected development in the south. The south is unable to produce its own goods since it lacks raw materials and an adequate market. Foreign goods have penetrated to the southern market to an extent that investors in the south cannot engage in any productive investment (George & Sabelli 1994, p. 89).
Dependency theory insists that the ongoing relationship between the south and the north is not natural or accidental, instead, it is synthetic given the fact that colonialists created it. The riches in the developed world are attributed to the imbalance of trade that takes place between the developed and the developing world. Therefore, developed countries could not be boosting their economic achievements without the underdeveloped countries. Industrialization in Europe and North America could not have materialized were it not for the slave trade that took place between Africa and the Caribbean Islands. In fact, some scholars accuse multinational organizations such as Barclays Bank and the IMF of benefiting from slavery. The emergence of the middle class in Europe is attributed to an illegal trade that took place between Africa and the United States. Many people were forced to abandon their homes to work under unfavorable conditions in the Caribbean. The proceeds, such as cotton and Sugar, realized through forced labor were taken to Europe, which fetched adequate capital. Haiti is usually given as an example of a third-world country, which produced cotton and Sugar (Griesgraber & Gunter 1995, p. 118).Get your customised and 100% plagiarism-free paper on any subject done for only $16.00 $11/page Let us help you
Dependency theory proves that Europe or west underdeveloped Africa in many ways, one of them being taking away raw materials and labor. Many tools of the trade, such as iron, were obtained from West Africa, including Nigeria. Many societies were left suffering since able men were taken away to work in exploration fields while their families agonized in great poverty. This facilitated development in the west while effectively underdeveloping the south. A critical review of the relationship between the south and the north shows that the developing world gave too much.
Methodology: Case Study
The dissertation would employ a case study mainly because the topic under investigation is wide and conducting a general study would not give sufficient evidence regarding the effects of globalization in the Nigerian economy. Many scholars, such as Gerring (2004, p. 23), are of the view that the case study method is controversial and should never be relied upon in analyzing a phenomenon. The dissertation has employed modernization and dependency theories effectively in explaining the relationship between development and globalization in Nigerian society. The case study will also facilitate the understanding of some of the issues that affect the Nigerian people in terms of economic and political development. Based on this, the dissertation uses some of the confidential governmental reports from the development-related ministries and agencies. Most of the reports filed by the government are often qualitative in nature meaning that this dissertation will benefit from them.
George and Bennett observed that any scholar wishing to employ the case study method should be willing to conduct a cross-case study meaning that at least two cases should be utilized. This article talks about economic development, as well as political development as far as the effects of globalization are concerned. The time limit of the article could not permit the utilization of interviews and other fieldwork-related methods. Based on this, the article would rely on reports from the Nigerian energy sector and the economic agencies. In the early 1960s to the late 1970s, scholars mainly employed quantitative studies because of the ease with which data could be accessed. Due to this, qualitative research, mainly case studies, lost significance since many clients preferred projects employing quantitative studies. In recent years, scholars have realized that case studies are even much value in terms of giving accurate information. For instance, many people are interested in establishing the history of particular phenomena, such as globalization. In fact, this is because the current problems affecting humanity are a result of past events. During attempted defining case studies by invalidating the previous definitions. He defined case studies as the intensive analysis of a particular unit with the main aim of comprehending the larger class of similar units (2004, p. 342). The researcher will rely on this definition in trying to conduct the study on the impact of globalization on the Nigerian economy and political matters.
Even though the case study method is often employed in conducting studies, it has some limitations that must be taken care of before applying the method. For instance, a researcher can easily extrapolate from the case to a broader perspective, which might not be applicable in real-life situations. It is noted that the dynamics of one event, such as war, cannot always explain the dynamics of other phenomena. Situations in human life might be similar in terms of causes and effects, but they might perhaps have different parameters. In this regard, the application of the case study method is sensitive implying that care should be taken when applying it. For clear understanding, case studies are compared to cross-unit studies whereby cross-unit studies could be viewed from a limited perspective.
Case Study: Nigerian Oil Sector
In his recent publications, Thomas Friedman (2008, p. 45) observes that globalization has positive changes to the socio-economic and political lives of people across the world. However, the concept of globalization cannot be understood in Nigeria without a critical review of its impacts on the Nigerian oil sector. Based on the reasoning of Friedman, globalization enhances technological developments, which permit people to compete, connect, and collaborate in trying to achieve some of the common objectives. Through globalization, many scholars believe that the idea of sustainable development can perhaps be realized. Politics has always taken center stage in the Nigerian oil sector, with multinational corporations competing for shares in multi-billion projects. Rosenau refers to the scramble for resources as fragmentation of power in the international system. The decisions made in the Nigerian government are often the products of the non-state foreign and domestic actors. A number of scholars have conducted extensive research to prove that Nigerian decision-making is a dispersal of authority in various directions. This section of the article establishes that fragmentation of power owing to the forces of globalization has resulted in resource conflicts and cultural wars in the Nigerian economy. These factors are the major impediments to the growth and development of Nigerian society. Many Nigerians languish in poverty while abject poverty characterizes the Nigerian economy. The Nigerian populace is unable to achieve the status of middle-class citizens as discussed by Friedman due to these wrangles and conflicts that are brought about by globalization. The interaction of the Nigerian government and the global non-state actors, such as the International Monetary Fund and the Multi-National, will be evaluated in this section to show that globalization drives the political affairs of Nigeria.
Between 1967 and 1070, the Nigerian people witnessed one of the bloodiest conflicts in the country when citizens at the Niger Delta fought over oil resources. There were attempts by some leaders to secede, which threatened the already fragile peace that existed in the region. These militia groups imposed taxes on the locals and requested the ruling class to pay royalties. A new sovereign state of Biafra was formed, it was later abolished when the federal government closed all entrances and exits to the main port of the new state. Since then, a number of transnational organizations are involved in the Nigerian conflicts, which resulted in a number of uprisings, such as the Ogoni uprising in the Niger Delta region in the 1990s. Foreign companies aiming at extracting oil supported the conflicts, which led to deaths and destabilization of the region. In 1997, the economy lost at least 117 working days due to the conflicts. Shell lost $1 because of crude oil destruction in 1998. The economy has been losing at least twenty percent of the output due to the conflicts fuelled by the foreign companies.
The militias are of the view that Nigerian people should benefit from the oil deposits, even though the reverse is true since many beneficiaries are often foreigners. Over 70% of the Nigerian populace still lives on less than a dollar a day. On the other hand, the government is reluctant to act since there is a misplaced belief that conflicts can coexist with mineral extraction. Ferguson (2005, p. 378) describes this situation as increasing acceptance of the idea that effective mineral production and endemic violence can coexist. The hope of many locals joining the militia groups is that they can force the government to act on the situation owing to the loss of valuable resources and time. On the other hand, the government is under intense pressure from the multinational corporations to offer adequate security to foreign investments. The Niger Delta region is of great importance to the government and all other stakeholders in the oil sector since it has the capacity of producing over 85% of state revenues and 96% of all foreign earnings. The region plays a critical role in sustaining the American motor industry, as well as the Nigeria’s new globalization partners, such as India and China. The population in the Niger Delta region feels cheated, as the government has neglected the region for years, even though it provides critical resources.
Literature Review: Effects of Globalization in Nigeria
Globalization affects the economy and the political system of the state in a number of ways because foreigners are allowed to access political and economic activities. This affects the performance of the locals economically and politically because they do not have financial abilities as compared to their foreign counterparts. Technology and multinational corporations are some of the agents of globalization because they promote foreign investment. Multinational corporations pressurize the government to accept the opening of the economy because it gives them an advantage. In other words, multinational corporations have adequate capital and stable technology that gives them an advantage in the economy. They are able to influence the market through heavy advertisement of goods and services, giving them an advantage. Politically, globalization affects the sovereignty of the state because foreign and domestic policymakers are forced to consult even supranational organizations before settling on a policy. This might be time-consuming and costly as some problems demand quick action (Griesgraber & Gunter 1995, p. 123). Before designing labor laws and other policies touching on trade and industry, private organizations, which are mostly owned by foreigners, must be consulted adequately.
In Nigeria, no policy can be made in the oil industry without involving multinational corporations. The regions with oil are always insecure because multinational corporations ensure that peace does not prevail. These organizations thrive well under hostile conditions. Public corporations are often privatized because they are believed to be making loses, which translate to poor economic development. The major aim of privatization is the generation of profits, which is productive in any economy. However, privatization gives core investors an advantage because they have huge amounts of capital. The main reason for privatizing public corporations is to encourage profit making since public corporations have always suffered from mismanagement and corruption. Critics point out that the government should never bow down to the pressure from foreigners because public corporations can compete favorably with private corporations if given adequate funding and support. Private companies should be allowed to operate in Nigeria because they set the pace for various industries. This does not mean that public corporations should be privatized. Some of the sectors are very important to the members of the public hence privatizing them would be dangerous. Multinational corporations have tendencies of monopolizing certain sectors meaning that goods and services would be provided through their guidance. Privatization of public corporations such as electricity, telecommunications, roads, and NEPA causes a number of problems. The private sector should be allowed to operate independently while the public sector should set its own goals and objectives. This would allow competition that benefits the common citizen.
In the Nigerian society, the existence of outsiders is signified by the presence of companies such as Shell, Mobil, Chevron, Unilever, and Breton Wood organizations, including the IMF and the World Bank. These organizations have transformed the Nigerian economy and politics in a significant way. Everybody feels their impacts in the economy and politics. Hertz noted that these organizations are fully owned by foreign nationals or their governments, even though people are made to believe that they are locally owned. Foreign media portrays these organizations as units whose major role is to promote the interests of Nigerians. However, these organizations work under strict rules from their governments to ensure that they repatriate resources. The ruling class of Nigeria does not represent the interests of the Nigerians, but instead, they work with these foreigners (Brett 2011, p. 43). They are usually referred to as the comprador bourgeoisie because they accept to be used by the ruling class from the west. During campaigns, these organizations fund candidates of their choice, who are perceived to support their policies. Foreign organizations must have the backing of the local leaders because they need access to the state machinery to flourish. The government is influenced to come up with strict policies regulating investment in major sectors and industries such as the oil industry. Local investors are denied access to licenses that would allow them to try their luck in investment. Currently, foreign banks and other financial institutions control shareholding investment in Nigeria mainly because of the support they receive from the government. In recent years, multinationals are trying to convince Nigerians that they are locally owned since they surrender some shares to the government and the local rich individuals.
Globalization does not favor domestic investment because its agents crush out competitors. The Nigerian government obtains loans from these foreign organizations with an assurance that their investments would be provided with adequate security. In fact, Ghemawat pointed out that foreign investments are awarded more security than even an ordinary citizen. According to the views of Marx, the rich are the real owners of the means of production because they even own the state. The state in this regard is the committee of the ruling class charged with the responsibility of ensuring that the properties of the rich are safe. Globalization in this case is the instrument of western imperialism. Ghemawat pointed out that globalization does not promote competition because it is not present in developed countries. It is a concept that is applicable in the third world only to deprive citizens of their right to invest. Globalization is believed to have started in the early 20th century when surplus production was witnessed due to mechanization and division of labor. Hertz (2002, p. 16) wonders why globalization was absent in the United States in the 1950s when development was at its peak. American firms dominated all major sectors in the United States. In the construction of roads, only three American companies were given the tenders (Brett 2011, p. 46). These include Ford, Chrysler, and General Motors, which were all owned by Americans. In the communication industry, three American firms were contracted to construct the airwaves. These firms included NBC, ABC, and CBS. In the same way, American firms including AT and T companies only dominated the telephony industry. When technology was first witnessed in the United States, IBM was the only firm that dominated the industry. This means that globalization is just a concept that is used to subjugate and oppress developing countries. In this regard, it does not present any opportunity to the locals, but instead, it constrains their achievements.
The World Trade Organization gave a defective explanation by noting that American companies had huge capital resources and adequate technology that allowed them to survive. How comes then that foreign firms seek government support to conduct business in Nigeria. They should make use of technology and their massive resources to edge out the competition. Foreign policies of developed countries are always very strict towards Nigeria mainly because of the rich oil deposits. Nigeria does not need any form of financial assistance from multinational corporations to survive because this has only widened the debt that Nigerians pay dearly with their resources. If globalization is to be embraced in Nigeria, it must conform to the ideal of the society. This means that it must be in line with the financial, economic, political, and cultural regulations of the Nigerian people (Steger 2003, p. 18).
Economic Effects of Globalization in Nigeria
Globalization is a concept that is understood variously among various scholars. The review of literature shows that globalization is both an enabling and a constraining concept in the Nigeria economy. Apart from supporters and opponents of globalization, there are those who take the middle ground claiming that its impacts have never been felt in the Nigerian society. In this case, the agents of globalization should be managed well in case their impacts are to be felt in the economy. Generally, Dollar and Kraay observed that globalization has contributed a lot in the Nigerian economy, even though its side effects are also eminent. Many scholars note that the main effect of globalization is inequality and poverty, which are rampant in the Nigerian society. Dollar and Kraay (2004, p. 89) are some of the scholars who argue that globalization have influenced positively the lives of the ordinary citizens in the economies of developing countries, including that of Nigeria. In parts of the world where globalization has taken root, there is always increased trade owing to reduced tariffs. In such areas, economies perform better as compared to areas where trade barriers are still eminent.
Countries that restrict trade through tariffs and other forms of restrictions experience retarded economic growth because investors shy away from punitive trade laws. Such states lag behind in terms of economic development. The above scholars note the living standards of the populace in Nigeria are on the rise owing to the agents of globalization that set the pace. The incomes of the poor are on the rise also because of the job opportunities generated through globalization. In their analysis, globalization boots economic growth and reduces poverty in a number of countries that embrace it. Dollar (1992, p. 526) noted that a number of countries are yet to embrace globalization fully, which is the reason for their persistent underdevelopment and poor living standards. Such states have closed trade policies that only favor local citizens. Moreover, such countries have weak economic institutions that do not facilitate trade development resulting to the designing of poor economic policies. With globalization, the handling of diseases such as malaria is very easy. The prevalence of diseases is one of the factors that impede economic development. Due to geographical barriers, the costs of transportation are always high. Therefore, globalization is hailed for reducing the costs of transportation because it supports improved transport and communication networks. One of the scholars referred to as Dollar proved through research that even though the free flow of trade and investment do not resolve the issues related to poverty, immigration and free movement of people, which are some of the agents of globalization, are perfect solutions to the issues related to poverty.
Developing countries are unable to attract foreigners due to high insecurity and poor infrastructural development. In fact, Dollar noted that this is what is missing in Nigeria and other developing countries, leading to increased poverty and poor living standards. Globalization has failed to produce its desired results in developing countries because some of the fundamental elements are missing. Apart from defective policies and poor infrastructural designs, a lack of government support for globalization has resulted in negative effects (Bain 2003, p. 59). The government has a crucial role to play by ensuring that the country is connected to the rest of the world in a manner that would benefit the common citizen. In Nigeria, this aspect is absent because the government does not play its important role of creating an enabling environment for the individual fulfillment of ambitions. In this regard, the government should always improve the education system meaning that graduates should be competent in the global market. In terms of information circulation, the populace should be aware of what is happening at the global scene.
Some scholars are of the view that globalization presents real opportunities to the marginalized parts of the world, such as Nigeria, which is struggling to recover from the effects of globalization that divided the country into tribal kingdoms. In this regard, globalization would be perceived as an agent of development given the fact that it helps the poor rediscover their lost glories. This would definitely reduce poverty and improve the standards of living of the poor. Globalization demands that countries liberalize their economies by allowing private ownership of property and non-interference in the market. This means that the government should never try to meddle in the affairs of the market because the market is expected to operate according to its own internal logic. Liberalization of trade is just one of the provisions of globalization, which is hailed for supporting the poor. Liberalization gives citizens of any country, including Nigeria, a chance to engage in economic matters without governmental interruption.
However, an opposing view notes that globalization is only meant to bring pain and anguish to the poor, who are already marginalized. Scholars taking the neutral view are of the view that globalization presents opportunities to some individuals while causing havoc to others. Such scholars utilize the works of Marx to note that only the rich benefit from globalization because it is simply an extension of the ruling class. In other words, Rivera and Romer suggested that globalization is a tool used to subjugate the poor and push them to the periphery. This relates to states also since Nigeria is offered with latest challenges of coping with the consequences of globalization. Resources are produced in the developing countries only to be processed in the developed countries. In this case, the developed countries are the bourgeoisie while the poor states or the counties of the south, such as Nigeria, are the proletariat who work for the rich to sustain their budgets (Brenner 2004, p. 27).
Whenever there is a showdown in the conflict of interests in trade, developed states institute measures that protect their economies, leaving the economies of the poor states vulnerable, as witnessed in 2001 in the Nigerian economy. In this regard, some scholars are pessimistic as regards to the commitment of the west concerning trade liberalization. Globalization would only be implemented equally if equal opportunities were given to all actors in the international system, including weak states such as Nigeria. Rodrik (1992, p. 91) noted that globalization is a concept that could be avoided, contrary to the views of many scholars who view it as an inevitable concept. The issue of integration that globalization supports is elusive because states or any other actor in the international system would only enter into an agreement with another actor in case such a partnership supports its national interests. From a realist perspective, states consider national interests before forming alliances in the global system. For instance, the formation of the World Trade Organization was meant to benefit the developed countries such as the US Britain. The organization does not serve the interests of the poor states in any way because it sets standards that developing countries cannot attain. Global financial institutions such as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund do not aim at helping the poor states, but instead, their main objective is to fulfill the interests of the United States. In Nigeria, the organizations have been accused severally of imposing strict policies on the government and financial institutions regarding lending and financial management.
The mismanagement of financial matters at the global scene led to the development of beggar-thy-neighbor policies, which are extremely dangerous to the economy of any country, including that of Nigeria. In fact, Nigeria is just one of the countries that are known to formulate such policies owing to the fact that it does not depend on its revenues for the drafting of the budget. He gives foreigners an opportunity to mess up with the economy hence affecting the economic chances of the locals. Rivera and Romer were of the view that public expenditure exceeds the income because of unnecessary projects that are usually recommended by the World Bank and the IMF. Just as the name suggests, globalization advocates for the removal of all trade barriers that could hinder trade among investors. Business executives operating at the global level have the right to engage in all forms of trade practices, as they long they obey the international standards. Local institutions on their side are expected to design policies that are in line with the provisions of the global trade rules and regulations. It is argued that this facilitates international economic development and permits amicable distribution of wealth between the rich and the poor. Studies show that the gap between the poor is ever increasing whereby the poor are becoming poorer while the rich are becoming richer. From this perspective, globalization is increasing the gab poverty gap between the developing and the developed countries. In Nigeria, the poor are becoming poorer while foreigners are enjoying their lives since they have the means of accessing luxury (Rivera & Romer 1992, p. 550).
In Nigeria, anti-liberalist scholars observe that globalization is marginalizing the locals further because it denies them an opportunity to participate in economic development. A number of scholars, including Seunghee, are of the view that negative effects of globalization are only felt by the poor because it is executed brutally, which is unforgivable according to their views. This shows that globalization is the source of all injustices in the economy, which affect the poor in many ways. In other words, this claim supports the thesis statement of this paper, which argues that globalization is a constraining factor in Nigeria. In the agricultural sector, the poor does not have any say because policies are made at the international level and are only implemented without any review. Currently, the prices of commodities in the Nigerian agricultural sector are dictated by global events whereby prices go up when global prices are up and fall drastically when global prices are low. However, Lawrence observed that global prices are influenced by powerful states. Nigerian farm produce is mostly exported to the west meaning that agricultural prices shape foreign relations between Nigeria and developed countries. The relationship between the liberalization of trade and economic development in Nigeria is not straightforward because it is unclear in the sense that only foreigners benefit from the new arrangement. For globalization to work well in any country, some variables such as culture should be considered before embracing it.
Seunghee (1998, p. 66), underscored the fact that the international system is currently interconnected and interdependent meaning that the relations among states are intensifying and deepening, particularly in matters related to trade. It is a fact that a state cannot operate in isolation because it cannot produce or manufacture all goods and services that its economy needs. In this regard, the state needs to import the goods and services it lacks, as well as export the surplus production. Regionalism is a new phenomenon according to Lawrence (1996, p. 56), which is another trend emerging in the global system. In fact, Lawrence claimed that over ninety percent of the world’s states are forming alliances with their neighbors in order to cope with the new challenges of economic globalization. In Europe, the EU is being strengthened on a daily basis while the United States is busy formulating strategies that would strengthen the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). In Africa, the AU is already in place, even though its strength cannot be compared to that of the EU and NAFTA. Due to regionalism, countries are expected to integrate their economies into the global system for them to survive. In other words, regionalism enhances globalization. Machlup (1976, p. 98) was of the view that relationships among developed and developing countries are inevitable due to globalization. In developing countries, globalization is mainly attributed to the liberation of trade and the establishment of market-oriented, as well as export-oriented strategies. In Nigeria, Motley (2001, p, 12) noted that the IMF and the World Bank specifically designed these strategies, which were in form of structural adjustment programs. These programs did not benefit the poor locals in any way because it led to the loss of jobs and massive unemployment.
The ratio of GDP to the volume of world trade has been in the increase since 1987 mainly because of the opening up of the economy and implementation of the policies designed at the global level. However, Nigeria is an isolated case because its ratio has been in the decrease mainly because of poor implementation of global policies. The ratio of trade to the GDP in Nigeria has been varying. Based on this, Fu-Chen Lo (2000, p, 123) noted that the growing links as regards to the movement of goods and services, capital, finance, business persons, and information facilitates the growth of major cities in the world, including those in Nigeria such as Abuja and Lagos. Trade-in major world cities are very high because of the presence of foreigners and huge multinational corporations that have stable capital investment. This provides unemployment opportunities to the locals, which boosts the income of the government through taxation. This would definitely improve the economy. However, globalization does not benefit all regions and cities because some are more attractive as compared to others. The less attractive cities and regions continue to lose their investors to well-organized places and cities. In Nigeria, some cities are poorly developed because investors shy away from investing in such cities or places mainly because of insecurity and unstable markets. Even though some cities in Nigeria have benefited from globalization, resources are repatriated to the west because major investors are foreigners. This leaves the country underdeveloped while the home to the MNCs is well developed because they receive capital from their corporations operating in Nigeria.
Yeung and Lo (1996, p. 112) stressed the significance of the elements that have contributed to increased interconnectedness and interdependence among states in the international system. These elements include expansion of trade, capital flow (specifically direct foreign investment), and improved technology, which is redefining the relationships among actors in the international system. As per the view of Akinbobola (2001, p. 58), globalization in Nigerian society may perhaps encourage the re-orientation of the domestic financial system and readdress the course of industrialization and technological improvement. Obaseki (1999, p. 31) concurred with other scholars who believe that globalization has both negative and positive effects to the economy of Nigeria. Even though the positive effects supersede the negative ones, Obaseki was of the view that the negative effects are the most pressing.
One of the positive effects according to Obaseki includes increased specialty and effectiveness whereby MNCs set the standards that are applied in developed countries. The local companies and organizations develop the idea of following the leader in the industry hence increasing efficiency in any sector. Another positive effect is improved quality of products implying that the consumer is able to access a quality product at a reduced market price. All manufacturers are forced to come up with products that would compete favorably in the market. Therefore, they aim at standardizing production, which benefits the consumer directly. Globalization encourages economies of scale meaning that organizations are able to produce many products and services at a reduced cost. Some multinational corporations have adequate capital that supports their operations. If the cost of production of goods and services is low, a consumer stands to benefit because he or she would have to pay less to acquire the desired product. Globalization has improved the general welfare of Nigerians even though it has some negative effects in the economy.
My view is that if a country adopts productive macroeconomic policies within a certain sector, chances are high that such a country would benefit from globalization. This has not been the case in Nigeria since all policies adopted favor foreigners, which is proves that globalization is a constraining aspect in the Nigerian economy. In this regard, a country should adopt some of the economic policies that are in line with those of the global economy. With the rapid integration of goods, there have been mixed fortunes among states as regards to macroeconomic development. In his analysis, Dickens (1992, p. 212) observed that globalization plays a critical role in enhancing the economic development of a country. The growth of trade globally is beneficial to all countries because it expands their consumer bases. In particular, he singled out direct foreign investment as one of the globalization instruments that have really boosted the economies of many developing countries such as Nigeria. Globalization, which is related to abolishment of trade barriers and opening up of the economy, encourages investors to commit their funds to a particular economy. Countries that are yet to open up their economies experienced reduced foreign direct investment because investors rarely operate in economies with restrictions. Transnational Corporation is the major aspect of direct foreign investment according to Dickens who noted that technology is a prerequisite for international trade. Without technology, the internationalization of trade and globalization in general would not be a reality.
Technology is needed to pass information from a manufacturer in one country to the consumer in a far away market. In Nigeria, life is comfortable because people can easily order goods from various parts of the world without necessarily traveling to those places. All this is made possible through technology, especially the internet, which has facilitated trade in a number of ways. Consumers have the opportunity to view the product online before making any payment, which is also effected online. With technology, goods are produced and consumed almost immediately because they are made available to consumers even before the production process is through. Lo (1994, p. 25) observed that the new global economy is driven by technology because multinational corporations employ it effectively to edge out competition. Technology defines the success of an organization because those that are able to utilize it effectively have an advantage over those that do not embrace it. In Nigeria, locals firms that are able to utilize technology have indeed outmuscled huge foreign organizations that rely on bureaucracy and economies of scale (Lo 1994, p. 25). However, technology has also brought down a number of organizations including local firms. It should be concluded in this section that the future of Nigeria lies in the effectiveness to employ technology.
Political Effects of Globalization
As Dickens noted in the previous section, globalization affects the economic development of a country mainly because of the presence of foreign capital, which finds its way into the economy through the promotion of foreign direct investment. Globalization facilitates the inflow of foreign capital, which interferes with the sovereignty of the state. Through technology and the idea of transnational corporation, the state is no longer in a position to make independent policies that are capable of resolving the issues affecting the members of society. The views of other actors are always taken into consideration before designing foreign policies, which interferes with the autonomy of the state (Monbiot, 2001, p. 65). Technology allows people and capital resources to move rapidly from one state to the other. State borders are no longer respected because restrictions are not good for trade. The Nigerian government does not have full power to control the activities that take place in the country since business is mobile. Moreover, business corporations are considered major stakeholders in the decision-making process meaning that they must always be consulted before formulating foreign policies. If the policies of the state do not favor the multinational corporations, they relocate their activities to other places with sound economic and political policies. This affects the performance of the state because the government loses income that is always generated through taxation. Moreover, relocation of business is unproductive to the state because it brings about unemployment and inflation, which may bring about a state of public disorder leading to frequent strikes, demonstrations, and even mass action.
Globalization has brought about the balance of balance, what is generally referred to as the new world order because the state is no longer the only domestic and foreign policy maker. This is contrary to the views of realists who observe that the state is the ultimate decision maker. In fact, the situation that Nigeria is facing could be defined using idealist theory whereby it is argued that the power of the state is fading because of the emergence of other state and non-state actors. States are forced to form alliances in order to survive in the current international system. Susan Strange ( 1996, p. 89) notes that globalization forces the state to retreat whereby it seeks support from other institutions meaning it is left with no option, but to involve other actors in decision-making process. Hardt and Negri (2000, p. 112) are of the view that sovereignty is shifting from the state to other actors in the international system due to globalization. In Nigeria, this is evident because the country could no longer claim to be sovereign. This is mainly because foreign powers are involved in policy making, both domestically and internationally. Before state officials design policies, they have to consult multinational corporations and other agents of globalization, which are mostly international organizations and supranational organizations. Monbiot (2001, p. 65) on his side warns that the state is losing its primary role to the giant multinational corporations because the government is not in a position to control malpractices committed by these organizations. However, other scholars are of the different review regarding this issue Doremus (1999, p. 36) comments that the state is still in control of policymaking and political culture.
Regarding political development of Nigeria, some scholars are optimistic because they note that globalization has contributed prosperity, even though some forces of darkness are against it. Friedman (2000, p. 21) observed that globalization consists of tension between those supporting prosperity and those in support of the status quo. Those in support of globalization are of the view that the society should abandon some of the repressing policies that have characterized the Nigerian society for years while the opponents posit that the community values would be destroyed in case globalization is allowed to take root in society. Friedman is perceives globalization as a new tool that the working class uses to fight for its rights and freedoms in society. Through globalization, the poor in society are able to air their views. The government has been in constant attack to improve the working conditions of various groups in society. In particular, the state is under pressure to amend the labor laws that have affected the poor for years. Some scholars associate globalization with hallowing-out of the state meaning that the executive arm of government is losing some of its powers to other organs of government. In this regard, Jessop (1993, p. 9) notes that the central government is not being subordinated because its power is simply being transferred to other state organizations. Globalization presents enormous challenges that cannot be handled by the central government alone hence the need to delegate authority. For instance, the central government can no longer manage state corporations hence the need for privatization.
State owned corporations could not accomplish all the requirements as stipulated by the constitution. Therefore, the idea of contracting other private organizations to accomplish certain tasks is appreciated. In some instances, the state is forced to appreciate the formation of semi-independent government agencies, such as independent commissions, due to the complexities of administration in the new global society. Delegation of duties to other state organs is viewed as one way of increasing efficiency in a complex society. In the 20th century, it was viewed that division of labor and specialization could increase production in the business world. Similarly, delegation of authority is viewed as one way of improving service delivery in the globalizing society. Holliday (2000, p. 167) is the only scholar who holds a different view regarding delegation of authority in the global society. He opposes the idea that globalization reduces the power of the national government.
In his study of the consequences of globalization on politics, Ulrich Beck (2005, p. 13) established a dichotomy between the stage foregoing the modern one and the one currently beginning. In his review, the previous period was the first modernity whereby the state was the only entity that claimed sovereignty because it conferred identity to individuals. Even though the state still plays this critical role, things have changed greatly because the nationality of the state no longer. In fact, an individual can be a citizen of two states. In the first modernity period, an individual had the power to do anything within the state boundaries, as long as he obeyed the law. In Nigeria, the government dictated policies to foreign corporations whereby they were expected to obey the laws of the law. However, things are extremely different in the new era, what is referred to as the second modernity (Jessop, 1993, p. 9). The second modernity is characterized by the free flow of capital and human resources, which has affected the state sovereignty in a significant way. Even though Beck does not argue that state sovereignty is lost, one thing is eminent, which is the state has lost its powers to the agents of globalization. In fact, the major player in the meta-game is the corporate capital meaning that whoever controls the capital has the major say in policy formulation. Globalization forces states such as Nigeria to accept the hegemony of capital.
Apart from corporate capital, the state is losing its powers to the civil society, which has been too active in matters related to the public. Beck observes that three players could perhaps have power over the meta-game, including the state, the investors, and the civil groups. In Nigeria, the corporate capital and the national government are both in control of the meta-game, but the civil society, which represents of the interests of Nigerians, is yet to be given an opportunity to play its role. In Nigeria, globalization has influenced the formation of the government in a significant way, even though the national government is still powerful. In the western countries, the national government has the power to protect local communities and industries from external exploitation through licensing and imposition of tariffs. However, the scenario is very different in Nigeria because the locals are vulnerable to exploitation while local industries are subjected to unhealthy competition in the name of globalization. In developed countries, the government offers subsidies to the locals and industries in order to prevent them from the effects of globalization. Some scholars observe that the state in the second modernity is still a powerful actor and its power is not expected to fade any soon (Friedman, 2000, p. 21). In terms of resources, the Nigerian government is still ahead of many multinational resources, which are believed to control the corporate capital at the global stage. The national regimes have the capacity to broaden their control even outside the intercontinental boundaries through the signing of accords for instance land mines, International Criminal Court, and the environmental protocols.
Surprisingly, Nigeria and other developing economies are incorporated as underdogs. Nigerian leaders could perhaps be subjected to the rules of the international organizations such as the ICC, which is currently very active. This has changed the politics of Nigeria because the international system is now different. Since the fall of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, the international system is now controlled by the single power, which is the United States. The role of the international organizations is being felt since the international court holds each leader responsible. Before the advent globalization, leaders in Nigeria could practice tyranny whereby they could subject the populace to unbearable conditions. Globalization has actually redefined the politics of Nigeria because restraint and accommodation of other people’s views is the main guiding principle. Power and authority is only sought through a popular mandate whereby period elections are held after every specified time. This is the norm in the international system, which forces leaders in Nigeria to conform to the internationally permitted election standards (Holliday, 2000, p. 167).
Globalization has a number of challenges to the central government in Nigeria in the sense that policy makers are now focusing on programs that are limited in scope, such as urban development. In the previous years, policy makers came up with programs that aimed developing the whole country or region. The case is very different owing to globalization. For instance, policies made for each town are different because they suffer from different problems. What the government does is to identify the problems unique to a certain community before designing the policies. The second phase of modernity demands that adequate research is conducted before designing and implementing a policy because problems are interrelated globally. Commons problems such as issues related to development, the gap between the rich and poor, environmental problems, terrorism, and issues to do with governance are some of the issues that are referred to as the global commons. Nigeria is crippling with these problems, especially the threats posed by terrorists and extremist groups, which are threatening to takeover some parts of the state. Global commons are issues that affect both national governments and corporations that are perceived to have enormous influence on the lives of citizens. Due to globalization, there has been ease of communication and the implementation of global policies, which affect the operations of the state in a number of ways. To strengthen its presence in society, municipal governments have been formed with the mandate of ensuring effective governance at the local level (Holliday, 2000, p. 167). Globalization demands that the demands of the labor unions and the health issues posed by the distribution of goods at the global level be handled at the lowest level of administration. The state is faced with an enormous challenge of ensuring that a balance is achieved between globalization and the maintenance of community values.
The ideas of Beck, which are related to the second modernity present new opportunities to communities, cities and interest groups because they may utilize the services offered by the computer to strengthen their positions in society. In other parts of the world, groups have been able to stamp authority in society through effective utilization of the technology. In fact, liberalists note that the state is no longer the only player in the international system meaning that interest groups could perhaps make use of technology to establish links with other likeminded groups outside the state boundaries. This would perhaps have a tremendous effect on the politics of Nigeria because interest groups would demand audience from the government side (Islam 1999, p. 14).
Relationship between Development and Globalization in Nigeria
A report released recently by the United Nations shows that income inequality is ever increasing in Nigeria. Even though it is claimed that the economy is expanding, the distribution of wealth is simply concentrated in the higher quartile. The report shows further that Nigeria is one of the emerging economies in Africa, but the poor in the country are not feeling its growth rate. The country has one of the biggest populations in Africa meaning that it is attractive to investors, owing to the availability of market and cheap labor. Over forty percent of citizens in Nigeria live below a dollar yet the country is rich in terms of natural resources. The economic reforms introduced in the country are only meant to benefit the owners of the means of production, but not the ordinary citizen who is always languishing in abject poverty. In fact, the economic policies introduced from 2000 are attributed to the increasing rates of poverty in the country. Development and poverty rates in Nigeria are measured using the dollar, a foreign currency, which means that other factors are never considered. Such factors as access to housing units, accessibility of health care services, and food security are never incorporated into the economic measuring instruments. While the local mechanisms used in measuring poverty shows that many people in Nigeria are poor, the global instruments suggest a contrary opinion (Doty 1996, p. 19). The reality of the matter is that many people in Nigeria are poor and the suggested economic growth rates do not show the real state of affairs in the country. The west tries to justify its presence in Nigeria by measuring the rate of growth using invalid instruments. Apart from Nigeria, a global report on economic performance of states suggests that Brazil, China, India, South Africa, and Russia are the emerging economies, yet the populace in these countries is extremely poor. In fact, the above countries are referred to as the new economic tigers, yet the western companies dominate their economies.
Analysis of literature reveals that Nigeria has gone through difficult times while trying to cope with the challenges of globalization. Existing information shows that no country is spared by the dangers of globalization meaning that it is upon the policy makers to ensure that the community is protected. Agents of globalization include multinational corporations and technology, which is reshaping political and economic activities of Nigeria. Through globalization, liberalization of trade in Nigeria is a reality, even though it has mixed fortunes for the locals. While some individuals have benefited a lot from trade liberalization, a large number of community members have been sidelined economically and politically. It is a fact that those in great influence economically are always consulted before designing political and social policies. However, literature review shows that the country is yet to gain fully from financial integration, which has so far been adopted owing to globalization.
It should be understood that existing body of knowledge do not suggest that Nigeria is not incorporated in the global economy fully. The reality is that the country is incorporated as an underdog meaning that it does not benefit from the arrangements at the global level (Chang 2002, p. 33). This confirms the claims of the world systems theory, which note that the global system has two sides, which are the core and the periphery. Resources are manufactured at the periphery, but real processing takes place at the center or the core. This means that Nigeria serves the global economy with the raw materials while it receives cheap goods that do not promote the growth of the economy. For instance, multinational corporations obtain oil from Nigeria at a reduced price only to be processed in oversees countries with claims that Nigeria does not have efficient machineries and labor that can undertake the processing. In this regard, the populace in Nigeria is left languishing in great poverty while a few individuals, who were earlier referred to as the comprador bourgeoisie, collaborate with the west to deprive the locals their rights.
Corruption and poor representation are some of the factors that affect distribution of resources in Nigeria. In other countries, globalization has been utilized effectively to benefit the common citizen, but the Nigerian case is different because of the selfish interests that leaders express. To this extent, the effects of globalization are negative as far as the poor are concerned. While it has reduced poverty and human suffering in other parts of the world, globalization is the major cause of poverty in Nigeria mainly because it deprives the locals an opportunity to engage in economic matters effectively. A majority of the Nigerian populace practices peasant farming meaning that citizens do not benefit from the global trade that Nigeria purports to be part of it. Those in strategic positions in government have continued enjoying public resources since they allow foreigners to access them through bribery. The Nigerian oil sector plays a critical role in the international trade because it shapes the transactions and treaties. However, Nigerians have never benefited from the oil deposits that characterize the country. A report released by one of the global non-governmental organization rated Nigeria as the second most corrupt state in the world. This means that the wealth generated through the implementation of global policies do not trickle down to the common citizen, but instead leaders share them among themselves, which extends the gap between the poor and the rich. From a Marxian analysis, it is observed that the gap between the rich and the poor is ever increasing because the poor are becoming poorer while the rich are even becoming richer (Islam 1999, p. 14).
Based on the experiences of other states, globalization could be used to strengthen Nigeria’s position in the international system. In some parts of the world, such as Europe and North America, globalization has actually eradicated poverty. In this regard, Nigeria can make good use of international market to improve financial management and develop the need infrastructure such as electricity and road network, which is always the recipe for economic development. In terms of politics, Nigeria has not taken full advantage of globalization to develop its institutions such as the judiciary and the legislature. The executive arm of government is still superior meaning that it controls policymaking. Apart from opening up society, literature review shows that globalization presents an opportunity to citizens to put pressure on the government to strengthen local institutions. Opening up of the economy is not enough to spark development because the issue of management plays a critical role. Liberalization of trade encourages foreign investment, which would further contribute in economic development through taxation and wealth creation. However, without political good will, the wealth created would be misappropriated meaning that it would enter the pockets of few individuals instead of benefiting the whole country. For the country to realize its economic dreams, it must remove all barriers of trade that would interfere with foreign investment. This would integrate the economy of the country into the global economy, which has its own benefits. Through political reforms, the wealth created through globalization would be utilized effectively to mitigate poverty and other human conditions affecting the living standards of Nigerians (Ohuabunwa 1999, p. 18). Literature review proves that globalization has helped Nigeria in generating wealth and capital, but it must be utilized properly to resolve the problems affecting the ordinary citizens.
Review of literature shows that globalization is best applicable in societies that embrace democracy. Therefore, Nigeria should find ways through which the democratic ideals would be upheld in order to reap maximally from globalization. This has happened in the United States and many countries in Europe. The review of existing information revealed that national interests always guide each state as far as external behavior is concerned. Nigeria should learn to prioritize its policies in order to achieve desired results when dealing with other actors, both state and non-state. The country should not allow multinational organizations and global financial institutions to take advantage of the illiteracy and low levels of awareness of the populace to exploit them. The country has a population that would serve as adequate market to any product or even service (Aimiuwu 2004, p. 21). This implies that it would always attract foreign investors because of its large market, availability of labor, and abundant natural resources that serve as raw materials to companies. This implies that vetting should be undertaken to ascertain valid companies that would operate with the interests of the locals at heart. The main problem in Nigeria is exploitation whereby foreign firms take advantage of the prevailing conditions to abuse the poor.
To understand the impacts of globalization on the Nigerian economy and politics, a critical review of collected data would be of essence. The analysis of data would take the form of descriptive statistics whereby the reports collected at various government offices and international organizations would be utilized effectively to establish the real role of globalization in the Nigerian society regarding economic matters and political development. To explain the effects of globalization in the Nigerian economy, there must be a close link between the agents of globalization and the production process. The relationship would be used to confirm the hypothesis that globalization affects the economic matters in the Nigerian society. In other words, the relationship would be proving that a relationship exists between real gross domestic product and globalization. From one of the studies conducted, it was established that a real gross domestic product of 0.748 existed between economic issues in Nigeria and globalization. An approximated seventy-five percent of the total variation in real gross domestic product was explained by the variables. Furthermore, an increase in positive coefficient conformed that there was a percentage increase in the real gross domestic product. From the study, it is eminent that inflation exportation, and global trade or liberation of trade affects the Nigerian economy positively (Ohuabunwa 1999, p. 18).
From various sources of data, it is true that exportation was low in the early 1970s, but increased until 1990s. At this time, the country was experiencing low economic growth according to the official data from the IMF and World Bank. In other words, globalization had not taken root in the Nigerian economy since the rate at which the country engaged with foreigners was too low. From 1990s to 2008, the country experienced rapid economic growth rate because the number of exported products, as well as the volume, went up. Since exportation of products has been going up since 1970s, the country has been witnessing an increased GDP rate. However, the interest rates have been fluctuating in the country meaning that domestic and foreign borrowing has not been stable.
In the Nigerian economy, globalization plays a negative role because it allows foreigners to take up what rightfully belongs to the locals. The ruling class enters into multilateral agreements with foreign organizations regarding exploration of resources yet the locals are not involved in the process. This leaves the locals at the mercy of the multinational corporations, which are believed to control technological innovations and capital. The state comes up with the beggar-thy-neighbor policies because it does not have any other option, given the fact that it is made up of the committee of the ruling class. The process of globalization is very complex meaning that it is very difficult for any country, especially the developing one, such as Nigeria, to implement its tenets. Globalization sets some of the oppressive and retrogressive policies that tend to favor developed countries in the international system. Nigeria is one of the countries that are affected negatively by globalization implying that the society is yet to appreciate it. From the literature review, it is evident that globalization ascribes functions to the economy of Nigeria whereby policy makers and investors are forced to follow them without any question. In other words, globalization establishes an international division of labor that heightens the disparity between the Nigeria and the agents of globalization, such as MNCs. In this regard, it is very difficult for Nigeria to utilize its economic resources effectively, which results to recycling of capital resources among the rich. This explains the persistent concomitants of underdevelopment such as poverty, food shortage, heath problems, and timidity in Nigeria. Indeed, these are some of the effects of globalization, as depicted by an extensive study conducted on the Nigerian society.
Since Nigeria cannot utilize the economic resources adequately, it is eminent that basic needs cannot be provided to the populace, which leads to untold suffering. The government is unable to engage in domestic production owing to the fact that resources are manufactured in the country only to be processed abroad. The west fools Nigerians that the local industries lack adequate knowledge and machinery that could be utilized in processing quality fuel and other oil products. Oil is therefore exported in form of crude for further processing in the United States and other parts of world such as Europe. The west determines the prices of crude oil, as well as refined oil. In many cases, crude oil is valued lowly while refined oil is extremely expensive. Under real circumstances, raw materials should be processed in Nigeria because it would enable the locals to learn the complex technology that is behind oil processing. This is what economists refer to as learning by doing whereby people are allowed to participate in the making something, with some supervision and guidance. Through this, there would be spillover effects and technological mastering, which is critical in any production process.
In Nigeria, globalization encourages self-first principle of competition whereby individuals aim at fulfilling their selfish interests. Since globalization is known to create wealth, there is a general belief that such wealth would trickle down to the common citizen. However, this has never been the case in Nigeria because the rich have always taken advantage to accumulate wealth by collaborating with the agents of globalization such as multinational corporations and global financial institutions to deprive the poor their resources. In this regard, it is concluded that Nigeria is incorporated in the global financial system as underdogs meaning that they are not involved in making major decisions. Through the quantitative study undertaken and the review of literature, it can be concluded that Nigeria can take advantage of globalization to develop various sectors of the economy, which would in turn boost development. For instance, globalization presents an opportunity to policy makers and investors to promote SMEs, which are known to convene the basic needs of citizens in various capacities. Through these microeconomic units, the locals would have an opportunity to participate in the process of wealth creation. Some scholars have proved through research that small business enterprises have the chance of promoting industrialization in any country (Ajayi 2001, p. 26.
In terms of politics, it is concluded that globalization has influenced the Nigerian society in a number of ways. The government has been forced to delegate some of its duties because of the changing nature of administration. The complexities of administration and service delivery in the modern international system do not allow states to serve people in the same way as in the 20th century. With expanded economy and the emergence of technology, the state can no longer claim that it is the only actor in the international system. The sovereignty of the state is under threat because state borders do not matter so much. Policies are made at the global level while implementation is undertaken at the national level.
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