INTERDEPENDENCE OF INTERNATIONAL TRADE AND
MIGRATION IN A GLOBALISING ECONOMY: THE
EVIDENCE FROM NIGERIA
EBENEZER ADESOJI OLUBIYI
Matric. No. 103681
B.Ed (Econs), M.Sc. Econs (Ibadan)
A Thesis in the Department of Economics
Submitted to the Faculty of the Social Sciences
in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of
DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY
UNIVERSITY OF IBADAN
The connection between trade and emigration has received increased attention in the literature. It
has been shown that trade barriers and lack of adequate technology contribute to low exports and
high imports of developing countries. This partly explains their high unemployment rate which,
by implication, generates tendency to emigrate. Also, remittances from emigrants tend to
increase imports. Although, researchers have investigated various aspects of trade, the
connection between it and emigration has been generally neglected. This study examined the
relationship between trade and emigration in Nigeria covering the period between 1980 and
A gravity model, based on a modified Hecsher-Ohlin framework, was employed to estimate the
trade-emigration relationship between Nigeria and five of her major trading partners – United
States (US), United Kingdom (UK), Sweden, Italy and Canada. Three-level analyses were
carried out in order to gain a deeper insight into trade-emigration relationship as follows: Nigeria
and the trading partners as a group, Nigeria and each of the countries, and product-based
(agricultural goods, textiles, food and beverages, chemicals, manufactures and petroleum
products). Data were sourced from the World Integrated Trade Solution (WITS) and World
Development Indicators (WDI). The Arellano-Bover System Generalized Method of Moments
estimation technique was used to check simultaneity and endogeneity problems, while the Sagan
tests of over-identifying restrictions were carried out to validate the instrumental variables used.
All estimates were set at 5% level of significance.
Emigration was negatively associated with exports (-0.20) and positively associated with imports
(0.03). The export elasticities of emigration to Canada, US and Sweden were positive with 0.47,
0.27, and 3.90 coefficients respectively. Emigration responded positively to changes in imports
from these countries with their corresponding coefficients respectively being 0.39, 0.2 and 1.58.
Exports to Italy and UK were negatively related to emigration with an estimate of -3.90 and -
0.09 respectively, while import elasticities of emigration from these countries were negative with
estimates of -1.58 and -0.11 respectively. Exports of agricultural products, textiles and food and
beverages to Canada, UK and US were negatively associated with emigration. Increases in
emigration to these countries were associated with increases in imports of manufactured
products, food and beverages and chemicals with coefficients ranging from 0.02 to 0.76.
However, increases in emigration were associated with decreases in imports of agriculture and
textiles products with respective estimates ranging from -1.05 and -0.01. Agriculture, textiles,
and food and beverages export elasticities of emigration were, to Italy (0.02, 0.67, and 0.05) and
to Sweden (1.91, 0.03 and 1.28). Manufactured import elasticities of emigration to these
countries were -0.54 and -0.33 respectively.
There is a strong connection between trade and emigration in Nigeria. Declining exports and
rising imports was associated with increased emigration. Declining exports and rising imports of
food and beverages, textiles and agricultural products partly accounted for increased emigration.
Increase in manufactured goods, and chemical were associated with decrease in emigration.
Government should therefore adopt policies that stimulate exports and moderate imports.
Keywords: Emigration, Trade, Gravity Model, Generalized Method of Moments.
Word count: 484
To the Alpha and Omega, the Everlasting and Almighty GOD for;
He is the Author and finisher of my faith.
I am grateful to God Almighty for making it possible by making the long-standing dream come
to reality. He always assure me that the programme will come to a successful end in spite of all
My special appreciation goes to the thesis committee members for their immense contributions at
every level of the thesis. Prof. T. Ademola Oyejide, exposed me to the culture of research and
taught me how to read, digest and summarise the literature. He expanded my sense of
imagination, deepens my understanding, and liberated my innate ability in the area of academic
research. Professor Emmanuel O Ogunkola taught how to be organized, to be specific, objective
and how to ensure coherence in my write up. His role in the theoretical framework and
methodology of the thesis and how the thesis should be structured cannot be overemphasised.
Dr. Abiodun S Bankole was very influential to deepening my thoughts in how to articulate and
establish the thesis’s problem statement. I am grateful sirs.
I am indebted to the Department of Economics, University of Ibadan for providing favourable
environment for those who care to learn. I appreciate the effective contribution of the Head,
Prof. F. Ekwaghide to my thesis. I am also grateful to all the academic staff for imparting
valuable knowledge in me and also for their insightful comments at every stage of the thesis. My
special appreciation goes to Dr. Adeolu O Adewuyi for his brotherly advice and encouragement.
The description of his assistance to this thesis is too voluminous to be mentioned here. I also
recognize the contribution of Dr. Oyinlola, particularly in the development of the thesis’s
I appreciate wonderful assistance rendered by the non-academic staff of the department. May
God reward you abundantly. I recognize the spiritual, financial and physical assistance provided
by many people whose names are just too many to be mentioned because of space. I appreciate
Ebenezer A. Olubiyi.
We certify that this work was carried out by Mr. Ebenezer Adesoji OLUBIYI in the department
of Economics, University of Ibadan.
T. Ademola Oyejide
B.Sc (Ibadan), M.Sc, (London)., Ph.D. (Princeton)
Supervisor and Chairman, thesis committee
Emeritus Professor, Department of Economics
University of Ibadan, Nigeria
E. Olawale Ogunkola
B.Sc., M.Sc., Ph.D (Ibadan)
Member, thesis committee
Professor of Economics and Dean Faculty of the Social Sciences
University of Ibadan, Nigeria.
A. Surajudeen Bankole
B.Sc (OAU), M.Sc., Ph.D. (Ibadan)
Member, thesis committee
Associate Professor, Department of Economics,
University of Ibadan, Nigeria
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title Page i
Table of contents vi
List of tables xii
List of figures xv
List of abbreviations xvi
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION 1
1.1 Preamble 1
1.2 Problem Statement 4
1.3 Objectives of the thesis 9
1.4 Hypothesis of the thesis 9
1.5 Justification of the thesis 10
1.6 Scope of the thesis 14
1.7 Organisation of the thesis 14
CHAPTER TWO: REVIEW OF TRADE AND MIGRATION POLICY IN NIGERIA
AND PERTNER COUNTRIES 16
2.1 Trade policies of Nigeria, Canada, the US and the EU 16
2.1.1 Trade policies of Nigeria 16
2.1.2 Trade policies of the EU in relation to Nigeria 22
2.1.3 Trade policies of the US in relation to Nigeria 25
2.1.4 Trade policies of Canada of Canada in relation to Nigeria 30
2.2 Immigration policies of the US, Canada and the EU 34
2.2.1 Immigration policies of the US 34
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