Expert: How FG can encourage more diaspora remittances

BY Dyepkazah Shibayan


Olufemi Odebode, chief executive officer (CEO) of Legwork, says the federal government can encourage diaspora remittances by ramping up infrastructure in the country.

Legwork is a company seeking to create a niche market for Nigerians abroad to invest in the country.

Speaking with reporters in Abuja on Wednesday, Odebode said the federal government has already taken some steps to encourage remittances but more needs to be done.

The World Bank said diaspora remittances to Nigeria through official channels stood at $22 billion in 2017, $23.63 billion in 2018, and $23.81 billion in 2019.


Odebode said the remittances could be more owing to the increase of citizens seeking greener pastures abroad.

He said by improving power, providing adequate security and a good transportation network, Nigerians would be encouraged to send money home for investments.


“I will say the federal government has done one thing,” he said.

“The unification of the exchange rate for the dollar is an encouragement. Before now, if I send dollars to Nigeria for an investment, I get about N400, imagine within a month I am sending $1 million home and I am able to get N700 million. By this, you can get greater value and return on your investment in Nigeria.

“The federal government should also improve the power sector, transportation… so one does not spend so much running diesel. By the time there is infrastructure, this translates to higher yield for whoever is investing in the country.”

Odebode also said if Nigerians abroad are assured that their remittances for various investments are safe, travel time would be reduced, thereby cutting carbon emissions.


The International Council on Clean Transportation said around 2.4% of global CO2 emissions in 2018 came from aviation.

“You don’t have to travel frequently from one location to another and the ozone layer is being saved. By the time you reduce your travel time, you are burning less carbon,” he said.

“What we are doing is trying to encourage more inflow of forex which will also help the Nigerian economy. It is not about just the individual, it is about the nation.”

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