Gig economy market size hits $310bn, employs third of world’s workforce – Rewane

The global size of the gig economy, a labor market that relies heavily on temporary and part-time positions filled by independent contractors and freelancers has hit an unprecedented $310 billion accounting for a third of the world’s workforce, said Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Financial Derivatives Company (FDC) Limited, Bismarck Rewane.

He also warned that precaution should be taken said the fall of SVB in the United States may affect Nigeria.

“Another important yet overlooked aspect of today’s world is the gig economy, which accounts for a third of the world’s workforce, according to the ADP Research Institute. “With an estimated global market size of $310 billion, the gig economy seems to be fast emerging as the new working-class norm”, he said in FDC Bi-Monthly publication made available to Blueprint.

He explained that, with a combined unemployment and underemployment rate of 56.1 per cent in Nigeria, the gig economy is becoming increasingly popular.

“While this emerging trend calls for corporates to rethink their workforce plans, tremendous fiscal opportunities remain untapped due to its informal nature”, he added. Rewane said, Onboarding the workforce in the gig economy into the formal sector will not only boost government tax revenues but also guarantee the inclusion of the workforce in the gig economy in social security schemes (including pension and health insurance).

A gig economy is a labor market that relies heavily on temporary and part-time positions filled by independent contractors and freelancers rather than full-time permanent employees.

Gig workers gain flexibility and independence but little or no job security. Many employers save money by avoiding paying benefits such as health coverage and paid vacation time. Others pay for some benefits to gig workers but outsource the benefits programs and other management tasks to external agencies.

The term is borrowed from the music world, where performers book “gigs” that are single or short-term engagements at various venues.

Concerning the fall of the SVB in America, he said, many analysts thought that the days of global financial contagion ended in 2008 after the collapse of Lehman Brothers and the subsequent financial bailout. The rigorous scrutiny of banking system buffers and stress tests by regulators has reinforced this view. The emphasis on proper governance and transparent reporting made investors comfortable accepting banking stocks without reservations. Alas, with the surprise unravelling of SVB, America’s 16th largest bank, we now know that market risks are ever-present and a clear danger to safe and sound financial systems.

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