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This paper examines the impact and nexus between Foreign Policy and Nigeria‟s Economic
Development, using President Goodluck Jonathan administration as a case study. As such, it
focus on Transformation Agenda (2011-2015) as the Foreign Policy thrust of the administration,
in relation to job creation, infrastructure, real sector and governance; income (GDP growth rate),
stability of price (inflation and exchange rate), employment rate (job creation), poverty rate and
so on as the key sectors for measuring the level of economic development in Nigeria. It
postulates bad/weak leadership, corruption, inadequate funding, and insecurity and so on as the
main deficit for the weak outcome of Transformation Agenda. This research work adopts the
descriptive and analytical approach to examine to examine the economic development of Nigeria
under the focused dispensation. The research work is based on System Theory, Soft Power
Theory and Sustainable Development Theory, to analyze the methodology employed in
achieving Transformation Agenda which was a comprehensive framework for transforming
Nigeria to one of the world twenty leading economies by the year 2020.
Title page………………………………………………………………………………………..i
1.1 Background Information 1
1.2 Statement of the Problem 5
1.3 Objective of the Study 6
1.4 Research Questions 7
1.5 Significance of the Study 7
1.6 Research Methodology 8
1.7 Scope & Limitation 8
1.8 Definition of Terms 9
2.1 Conceptual Clarification 11
2.1.1 Economic Development 11
2.1.2 Foreign Policy 16
2.1.3 Personality 19
2.1.4 Transformation 20
2.1.5 Foreign Policy, Personality and National Transformation: The Nexus 21
2.2 Theoretical Framework 22
2.2.1 Systems Theory 22
2.2.2 Soft Power Theory 24
2.2.3 Sustainable Development Theory 25
3.1 Preamble 27
3.2 Research design 27
3.3 Sample and sampling technique 27
3.4 Methods of data collection 27
3.5 Data analysis techniques 28
4.1 Historical Development 29
4.1.1 Introduction 29
4.1.2 Growth Performance before Transformation Agenda 30
4.1.3 Transformation Agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan 31
4.2 Macroeconomic Framework and Economic Direction of the Transformation Agenda 34
4.2.1 Job Creation 36 YouWin 37 SURE-P 37 GIP 38 Agricultural Sector 39
4.2.2 Infrastructure 41 Education Sector 41 Transport Sector 44 Information and Communication Technology 45
4.2.3 Real Sector 47 Power Sector 48
9 Agricultural Sector 50 Healthcare 52 Oil and Gas 54
4.2.4 Governance 55
4.5 Economic Growth Performance during Transformation Agenda 56
4.5.1 Oil Sector 57
4.5.2 Non-oil Sector 58 Agriculture 58 Mining 59 Manufacturing 59
5.1 Summary of Findings 63
5.2 Conclusion 64
5.3 Recommendation 65
States all over the world design and implement foreign policies in order to guide their foreign
relations as well as protect, promote and defend their vital national interests which could be in
areas of trade, strategic and diplomatic interest and whatever a country might consider as its vital
national interests so therefore, foreign policy is a reflection of domestic policy, it is the
promotion of national interest at international level. To this end, the history of Nigeria foreign
policy since 1960 has constantly been changing, though the principles guiding her foreign
relations remain the same either under military or civilian regimes in the recent past, because
various regimes have tried to pursue the country’s foreign policy under almost the same
objectives, the style and vigor of their leadership, agenda setting, mobilization of critical material
and immaterial resources have differed with consequent difference in concrete national goal
attainments (Nwankwo,2013:213). The principles of Nigeria‟s foreign policy have since
independence in 1960 been broadly spelt out in the constitution and has tenaciously guided the
conduct of its foreign relations over the years from the first Prime Minister Tafawa Balewa, to
the Former Head of State, President Goodluck Jonathan. The principles of Nigeria foreign policy
deals with what guides the formulation and actualization of its foreign policy, in other to ensure
the survival of the state and its values in the course of its relations with other actors especially
states in the international system. In the speeches of Nigeria‟s first Prime Minister Sir Tafawa
Balewa, to the Federal House of Representatives and the United Nations General Assembly on
20th August and 7th October 1960 respectively, he enunciated the general principles which would
guide the country‟s foreign policy (Review of Nigeria‟s Foreign Policy; 2012, P289).
The principles which have imbued Nigerians foreign policy since independence include the
following; protection of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Nigerian state, promotion
of the socio-economic well-being of Nigeria, enhancing Nigeria‟s image and status in the world
at large, respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of other states, non-interference in the
internal affairs of other states, promotion of unity and solidarity of African states; total political,
economic, social and cultural emancipation and rejuvenation of Africa, an unflinching
commitment to the liberation of countries still under colonial rule, as well as the removal of
remaining vestiges of colonialism in Africa (Nigeria at the United Nations; Partnership for a
Better World 1991: P29). However, foreign policy in the contemporary world has taken a
completely new shape, the foreign policy of a state in today‟s world must consider issues such
as; production, exchange, technology, markets, economic development, political stability and
predictability, prevailing leadership and its qualities which are prerequisites for effective foreign
policy-making process, this implies the need for a shift in paradigm of Nigeria‟s foreign policy
principles in respect to the dynamics that will shape the formulation and actualization of the
foreign policy objectives of Nigeria and prior to this, the advent of democratic government in
1999 in which section 19 of the 1999 constitution states that, foreign policy principles shall be;
promotion of a just world economic order among others (Review of Nigeria‟s Foreign Policy;
2012, P289). Also, with the advent of democratization, as well as the eradication of apartheid
and racism in the continent of Africa in early 20th century as well as the declining economic
setbacks brought about the change in Nigeria‟s foreign policy focus which led to the emergence
of economic diplomacy aimed at strengthening Nigeria‟s economic interest, promoting and
protecting the country‟s national interest, has become a significant priority of the Nigeria foreign
They have been a number of visions, programs and policies pursued by various heads of
government of Nigeria, either under the military or civilian regimes which is directed towards
socio-economic reforms since independence in 1960, this is consequent upon the fact that
Nigeria‟s foreign policy has always been a product of the Head of State, thus the President must
accept responsibility for policy concept and design. Different heads of state as well as president
of Nigeria has adopted foreign policy as an instrument of economic development, economic
development is a policy intervention aimed at the economic and social well-being of the citizens,
economic growth, increasing the literacy ratio, improve infrastructure and health care services.
Alhaji Shehu Shagari, who was elected in 1979 and ruled up to January 1984, tagged his policy
as the Green Revolution, aimed at transforming the agricultural sector and use the gains to
thereafter to revolutionize other key sectors of the nation‟s economy. Shortly after these General
Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida took over the mantle of leadership in 1984 and hinged his
administration policy package on the Structural Adjustment Program (SAP) aimed at addressing
fundamental and structural imbalance in the economy, diversify the economy, and strengthen the
currency, this he did by opening up the domestic economy to international market forces and
institutions such as World Bank (IBRD) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) to play key
roles with the hope of using the benefits to transform the whole economy. Thereafter, General
Sani Abacha came into power in 1993 after the controversial annulment of the 1993 presidential
elections with a different focus on the foreign policy objective of Nigeria and tagged his policy
thrust vision 2010 which was aimed at reducing the influence of international financial
institutions and centered mainly on the exploitation of domestic efforts towards transforming the
economy. In 1999 to 2007, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo became the president; his first four years in
office were focused mainly on consolidating democracy. Thereafter, he concentrated on reforms
in Banking and Telecommunication sectors; he also initiated the National Economic
Empowerment and development Strategies (NEEDS), this reform program rested on four key
strategies which were; reforming government and institutions, growing the private sector,
implementing a social charter and value re-orientation. These policies, combined together have
been widely acclaimed as successful as they have had some appreciable impact on other sectors
of the economy. Another foreign policy reversal introduced by Alhaji Musa Yar‟adua following
his election and inauguration in may 2007, his foreign policy thrust was tagged the 7-point
Agenda; were he identified seven sectors of the economy as the main source of transforming the
entire economy. Due to the medical conditions of President Umaru Musa Yar‟adua, a Federal
High Court on the 13th of January 2010 conferred on the then Vice President Goodluck Jonathan
the power to carry out state affairs but was formally sworn in on the 6th of May 2010 following
the formal announcement of the death of President Umaru Musa Yar‟adua the previous day.
President Goodluck Jonathan was sworn in as the 14th Head of State on the 29th of May 2011, at
his inauguration he directed for a review of Nigeria‟s foreign policy with focus on Nigeria‟s
domestic priorities which has continued to propel Nigeria‟s actions and reactions on the
international arena; these key domestic priorities include good governance, electoral reforms,
transparency and anti-corruption, commerce and industry, energy (electricity supply) reform and
investment, defense and security as well as agricultural and rural development. And thus tagged
his foreign policy thrust as the Transformation Agenda which covers the period 2011 to 2015,
according to President Goodluck Jonathan (2011), Nigeria‟s foreign policy and diplomacy are
now anchored on the realization of the Transformation Agenda through the attraction of Foreign
Direct Investment (FDI) and most particularly the diversification of the entire economy from
total dependence on oil to a significant reliance on non-oil driven economy upon which real
economic growth and development can be founded. The Transformation Agenda of President
Goodluck Ebele Jonathan draws its aspirations from Nigeria‟s vision 20:2020 which was
articulated under the administration of President Olusegun Obasanjo (1999-2007) in the fourth
republic. The Transformation Agenda captures among other things, the road map and blue print
to achieving national economic growth and becoming one of the twenty largest economies in the
world by 2020 ( Gyong; European Scientific Journal, vol8).
President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan at his inauguration inherited a nation with a battered image
because of the ill health of his predecessor and his inability to attend important international
meetings, Nigeria lost many positions in multilateral associations, forsook obligations and thus
the ship of the Nigerian state was sailing rudderless on the international waters of foreign policy
prompting President Goodluck Jonathan to center his foreign policy on Citizen Diplomacy which
involve diplomatic shuttles with the aim of returning Nigeria to the international arena, such as
the delisting of Nigeria from the discriminatory rule of the Department of Homeland Security on
special screening of passengers on international flights to United States of America that
specifically targeted Nigerians due to the Christmas day attempted bombing of United States of
America airline by a Nigerian in 2009 consequently leading to the signing of the first United
States of America-Nigeria Bi-national Commission in April 2010, aimed to establish a
mechanism for sustained bilateral high level dialogue to promote and increase diplomatic,
economic and security co-operation between the two countries, shortly after the visit of President
Goodluck Jonathan to United States of America. Also, in line with the Citizen Diplomacy
Agenda, President Goodluck Jonathan took time to interact with Nigerians abroad and showed
his ready to take up their problems with their host countries by engineering a purposeful
mobilization and instrumentalisation of Nigerians in the Diaspora for national development
through the formation of the Nigerians in Diaspora Organization (NIDO) in all countries where
there are Nigerians. Remarkably, all these are the component of the foreign policy objectives of
the Transformation Agenda (Nwankwo2013:215).
Furthermore, for the past two years the Nigerian economy has been growing consistently by
nearly 7% per annum, this is one of the highest growth rates in the world owing to the economy
reforms of the Transformation Agenda which has made Nigeria the biggest economy in Africa
with Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for 2013 totaled 80.3 trillion naira and according to the
United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in its 2012 investment
report; Nigeria has become the number one destination for foreign investments in Africa. The
Transformation Agenda aims to deepen the effects and provide a sense of priority policies and
programs which when implemented would transform the Nigerian Economy to meet the future
needs of the people. However, we must put at the back of our mind that Transformation Agenda
cannot be realize in a corrupt system; therefore sincerity of purpose should e the ladder for the
attainment of the Transformation Agenda. To this end, this paper examines the economic
direction of Transformation Agenda as well as its role as the foreign policy thrust of President
Goodluck Jonathan, the paper focuses on the economic growth of Nigeria within the time frame
of 2011 to 2015
Nigeria government is characterized by an inconsistent foreign policy which has made her a
scorn in the committee of nations; this has led to the question on how to manage the foreign
policy of Nigeria to serve her domestic economic development interest. It is against this
backdrop that Transformation Agenda was formulated as the foreign policy thrust of the present
administration, in which Nigeria‟s economy has grown very fast in the last few years making her
the largest economy in Africa. However, the challenge before the government is how to move
the nation away from an oil-dominated economy, institute the basics for a private-sector driven
economy, build the local economy on international best practices, and transform the passive oil
industry to a more pro-active one and restructure the country along the lines of a more
decentralized federalism.
The problem being looked into in this research is the Economic Developmental problem facing
Nigeria since independence. There are various problems related to the development of Nigeria
Economy. This paper identifies the following factors;
Bad Governance; these element pose a serious problem in Nigeria. These phenomenon are
encompassed by the absence of a ruling class (leadership) dedicated to the pursuit of economic &
societal development which will strengthen state institutions and democratize the society. As
argued by Dr. John Akude;
“The rulers of most African states are not interested in pursuing economic
development. They use power to amass wealth which makes the personalization
and misuse of power inevitable. Personal power thwarts institutionalization and
has weakening effects on the state”(Akude, 2007).
As such, bad leadership has often proved to be a source of development impediment in Nigeria
owing to embezzlements of public funds which has hindered governments role in refurbishing
basic infrastructures such as transportation which would have enhanced easy mobility as well as
attract foreign investors through improve power supply. Nigeria leaders are more interested in
filling their bank accounts than ensuring the general welfare of the populace to which they have
been sworn to serve. These leaders indirectly and directly propagate corruption, conflict, ethnic
& religious divide as well as the Institutional failure of bureaucracies within the various
Corruption: Corruption is the perversion of integrity or state of affairs through bribery, favor or
moral depravity. It takes place when at least two parties have interacted to change the structure
or process of society or the behavior of functionaries in order to produce dishonest, unfaithful
or defiled situations. Nigeria politicians are regarded as corrupt, Trillions of Nigeria‟s wealth
have been siphoned continuously, and deposited in European, North American banks. Some of
these wealth‟s are in those continents in form of properties and assets. Examples of such leaders
include; General Sani Abacha. In other words, Nigeria leaders are corrupt, but their corrupt
practices are backed also by the Western financial institutions.
Equally, Nigeria‟s growth is sectorally concentrated as 90 percent of economic activity and
growth come from three or four sectors (oil, crops, trading, and real estate), as well as regionally
concentrated, the remaining 29 or 30 sectors account for only ten to 20percent of economic
growth and activity, including telecoms, manufacturing, banking, insurance, construction and all
the other big name sectors and thus diversifying the economy becomes a serious problem for the
success of the Transformation Agenda.
Specifically, the study seeks to achieve the following objectives;
1. To provide a detailed analysis on the implementation, achievements and limitations of the
Transformation Agenda as a foreign policy thrust of President Goodluck Jonathan.
2. To investigate the nexus between foreign policy and economic development with
emphasize on the foreign policy objectives of Nigeria under President Goodluck
3. To show the current economy development of Nigeria using Macroeconomics framework
factors in the duration of the Transformation Agenda as the Foreign Policy Thrust of
President Jonathan Administration.
1. To what extent has the Transformation Agenda as a foreign policy thrust of President
Goodluck Jonathan contributed to the welfare of the Nigeria state and people, as to hope
of the dreams embodied in vision 20:2020?
2. Are they nexus between Foreign Policy and Economic Development in correlation to
Transformation Agenda as the Foreign Policy Thrust of President Goodluck Jonathan?
3. What is the relationship between Foreign Policy and Economic Development in relation
with the personality of President Goodluck Jonathan?
This study is very important for certain reason which are;
1. First, the study interrogates the foreign policy initiatives of Nigeria under President
Goodluck Jonathan. How far, so far?
2. Secondly, the study is of paramount importance to decision makers and the would-be
diplomats for it traces the foreign policy thrust of economic development of some past
Nigeria leaders with an insight into the present.
3. It brings to light the gradual but definite transformation going on in Nigeria‟s
contemporary foreign policy arena in relation to economic growth in line with Vision
4. It provides an insight or analysis on the achievements, limitations, and challenges of the
transformation agenda as the foreign policy trust of President Goodluck Jonathan
5. It provides an insight into the nexus between the Personality of a Leader, Foreign Policy
and National Economic Transformation in line with achieving Nigeria Vision 20:20.
The research methodology to be used in this paper includes the descriptive and analytical
methods. The method of data collection used for this study is the secondary data, which involves
the use of sources such as; the Internet, Newspapers, Textbooks, E-books, Journals, Magazines,
Annual Reports and other data collection avenues relevant to the study.
The scope of this study covers the planned course of action of the Transformation Agenda of
President Goodluck Jonathan, with focus on 2011 to 2015 which is the duration of the
A. FOREIGN POLICY; The term foreign policy has been over time defined by scholars.
Akindele R.A for example defines foreign policy as a collection of specific policy
strategies chosen from a variety of alternatives and implemented over time and space in
order to achieve specified set of goals and objectives that would lead the society towards
the attainment or protection of prepared values. His definition as it appears sought to
suggest that whatever a nation or possibly what her leaders choose from a variety of
alternatives will be considered as her foreign policy. Corroborating his views, Ofoegbu
.R defines foreign policy as: A set of connected ideas and thoughts, which often is the
product of mental reflective activities and processes which embodies judgment, choices,
decision, evaluation, and systematic insight, appreciation of objectives realities revolving
round the milieu and seeking solutions. Even the definition of Ofoebgu suggests that a
leader and whoever that is in charge of the country‟s foreign affairs department or
ministry is responsible for the country‟s foreign policy formulation.
Chibundu (2004:1) defines foreign policy as a country‟s response to the world outside or
beyond its own frontiers or boundaries, the response which may be friendly or
aggressive, casual or intense, simple or complex. It comprises many elements; namely
diplomatic, military, trade, economic, social, cultural, educational, sporting, etc and it
varies in form and focus according to circumstances. Some countries at different times
might be friends or enemies or valued allies within a relatively short or long period of
B. TRANSFORMATION; According to the Oxford Advance Dictionary, transformation is a
complete change in somebody or something. It is a multifaceted and multidimensional
change affecting every component of the individual or society. In the life of a nation,
transformation involves structural changes in the major institutions of governance and the
society at large. It should guarantee improved living standard, Per Capital Income, Gross
Domestic Product (GDP) and other basic Socio-economic indicators such as food,
shelter, clothing and health for the substantial majority of the citizenry. Thus, on the
whole, transformation can be said to be a total package that involves every facet of the
individual, organization or society. It is meant to be a vehicle for a better society where
virtually everyone will be reasonably comfortable.
C. NATIONAL INTEREST; Definition of the concept has often varied according to the
circumstances of its application. Our intention here is not to advance a series of idle
words but is to rehash the controversies associated with the definitions. In this regards
two schools of thought come to bear; the objectivist and the subjectivist schools of
national interest are worthy of thought. The objectivist school amongst whom is
Morgenthau contends that, the best interest of a nation is a matter of objective reality
independent of the perception of scholars and policy makers. It maintains that there are
basic interests upon which survival and prosperity of a state depends and this survival and
prosperity is based on power. On the other hand, the subjectivist such as Allison and
Brechen maintain that national interest is not an objective truth that prevails whether or
not it is perceived by members of a nation, rather, it is a pluralistic set of subjective
preferences that change when the requirement and aspiration of the nation‟s members
change. To them, power and dialogue can be used by states to pursue their national
interest in the international system. States only use power when dialogue has failed.


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