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Craftmanship and Trade Skills

Trade Skills: Empowering Nigeria’s Youth Population

Last Updated on August 1, 2023


Unemployment is a prominent issue among Nigerian youth. With over 13 million unemployed youths in Nigeria, the need for empowering them with trade skills cannot be overstated.

Trade skills are of great importance in equipping young Nigerians with the skills needed to survive and thrive in today’s economy. This includes skills such as plumbing, carpentry, and electrical installations.

By discussing the topic of trade skills empowering Nigeria’s youth population, we can shine a light on how these skills can help combat unemployment, promote entrepreneurship and boost the nation’s economy.

Unemployment looms large among Nigeria’s youth population, creating a pressing need for viable solutions.

Trade skills play a pivotal role in empowering Nigerian youth, offering a pathway to self-reliance and prosperity. This blog chapter delves into the significance of trade skills in transforming the lives of Nigeria’s young generation.

Read: Nigerian Women in Trade Skills: Breaking Barriers

Why Trade Skills?

In a society where the traditional academic education is highly regarded, the benefits of trade skills cannot be ignored. Trade skills are practical skills acquired through vocational training, apprenticeships, or on-the-job training in a particular trade or profession. Here are some reasons why you should consider trade skills:

Explaining the Benefits of Trade Skills over Traditional Academic Education

  • Trade skills are more practical and hands-on, giving the learner real-life experience in their field of study

  • Trade skills training takes less time and is often more affordable than traditional academic education

  • Trade skills training allows students to build a career in a specific field without the need for a traditional degree

  • Trade skills can lead to higher earning potential than some traditional academic professions

The Potential for Self-Employment Opportunities

Trade skills offer the potential for self-employment, which is a key advantage in a country like Nigeria with high rates of unemployment.

By learning a trade skill, individuals can start their own businesses and become self-sufficient, creating job opportunities for themselves and others.

They can also provide services to their communities, improving their standard of living.

The Increased Demand for Skilled Labor in the Nigerian Job Market

The Nigerian job market is in dire need of skilled labor. Many businesses are currently struggling to find qualified candidates for positions in fields such as construction, plumbing, electrical work, and auto mechanics.

This creates a great opportunity for individuals with trade skills to find long-term, stable employment.

  • Trade skills are essential for infrastructure and building projects, which are on the rise in Nigeria

  • Trade skills are in demand in the oil and gas industries, where Nigeria has a significant presence

  • Trade skills are needed to support the growth of the country’s manufacturing industry

Overall, trade skills offer a promising career path for young Nigerians. Practical experience, self-employment potential, and increased skilled labor demand make trade skills valuable alternatives to academic education.

Promoting trade skills empowers Nigeria’s youth to build a prosperous future.

Read: A Comprehensive Guide to Craft Apprenticeships in Nigeria

Current State of Trade Skills Training in Nigeria

Trade Skills Empowering Youth Population are essential for the development of any country, and Nigeria is not an exception.

Despite Nigeria’s abundant youth population, lack of investment and inadequate infrastructure hinder vocational skill development. This limits the country’s economic growth potential from its youthful population.

Overview of the Current State of Vocational Education in Nigeria

The current state of vocational education in Nigeria is dismal due to challenges: lack of investment, inadequate infrastructure, and outdated methodologies.

Vocational education is neglected, perceived as inferior to academic education, leading to a shortage of skilled professionals. The lack of investment limits the country’s ability to provide industry-standard skill acquisition programs for youths.

Highlighting the Challenges Faced by Nigeria’s Technical and Vocational Education System

The technical and vocational education system in Nigeria encounters significant challenges: inadequate funding, outdated infrastructure, and poor curriculum development, plus government’s lack of incentives and support. Curriculum development in vocational education lags behind technological advancements, making skills irrelevant to the labor market.

Government’s lack of incentives and support causes low vocational institution enrollment, resulting in a shortage of skilled professionals.

Statistics on the Lack of Investment and Inadequate Infrastructure in Vocational Institutions

Reports from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) indicate that Nigeria’s technical and vocational education system suffers from inadequate investment, which is evident in the spending of budget allocations for the sector.

Between 2015 and 2017, the budget allocated to vocational education decreased from ₦71 billion to ₦49 billion. This trend replicates the general underfunding of the education sector in Nigeria. The inadequate infrastructure and the poor condition of available facilities, including the training equipment, are also notable challenges plaguing vocational institutions in Nigeria.

Facilities such as libraries, laboratories, and workshops are either non-existent or in deplorable conditions.

Read: Impact of Modern Tech on Traditional Crafts in Nigeria

Trade Skills: Empowering Nigeria's Youth Population

Initiatives to Empower Youth through Trade Skills

Trade Skills Empowering Youth Populations refer to the set of technical skills required for a particular job. Training and practice enable learning of valuable skills.

In Nigeria, empowering youth with trade skills reduces unemployment and boosts economic growth. Various organizations pursue initiatives for promoting trade skills among young Nigerians.

Initiatives to Empower Youth through Trade Skills

Skills Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development (SAED) Programme

The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) introduced the SAED programme to empower youth with entrepreneurial and vocational skills.

All NYSC orientation camps in Nigeria implement the program, benefiting over 1 million young people.

The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme

Launched in 2015, the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme provides funding, training, and mentorship to young entrepreneurs across Africa.

The programme seeks to empower 10,000 entrepreneurs over ten years, and so far, over 8,000 entrepreneurs from Nigeria have benefited from the programme.

The Mastercard Foundation Scholars Programme

The Mastercard Foundation Scholars Programme offers scholarships and career support to economically disadvantaged, academically talented African youth.

The program empowers them with skills and knowledge to contribute to economic and social development.

The UNIDO Youth Empowered Programme

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) Youth Empowered Programme aims to empower young people with the knowledge and skills needed for entrepreneurship and job creation.

The programme provides training and mentorship to young entrepreneurs across Nigeria with a focus on sustainable business practices.

The National Industrial Skills Development Programme (NISDP)

The Federal Government of Nigeria initiates the NISDP to train and empower youth with technical skills.

Training includes welding, carpentry, plumbing, and electrical installation.

Highlighting Success Stories and Impact of Such Initiatives

The SAED programme by the National Youth Service Corps benefited over a million, with many starting successful businesses.

The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme produced numerous successful entrepreneurs in Nigeria and Africa. Beneficiaries gained international recognition and funding, creating jobs and wealth for their communities.

The NISDP empowered thousands with vocational skills, enabling self-employment and contributing to Nigeria’s economy.

The Need for More Investment in Technical and Vocational Education in Nigeria

More investment in technical and vocational education is needed in Nigeria. It remains critical for human capital development. Efforts should empower young people with skills to create job opportunities and enhance employability.

The government and private sector must prioritize investment to bridge the skills gap for economic growth.

Read: Craftsmanship as a Sustainable Livelihood in Nigeria


Trade Skills Empowering Youth Population can financially and contributes to Nigeria’s economy. Government and organizations must prioritize investment to boost job creation and income. This prevents over-reliance on overcrowded white-collar jobs. Government, organizations, and individuals must collaborate for successful trade skill promotion.

Ultimately, trade skills training is a critical component in the development of Nigeria’s economy, and it should not be overlooked.

By investing in these skills, we will see a rise in economic growth and a better future for Nigeria’s youth population. Few institutions maintain industry partnerships for practical training, crucial in technical and vocational education.

This leaves many graduates without practical experience, limiting employability.Nigeria must restructure technical education, providing funding and infrastructure for trade skills programs.

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