An Analysis of the Factors Determining the Spatio-Temporal Patterns and Functional Characteristics of Markets in the Yola Study Area, Northeast Nigeria

Ken Allison, Wilfrid Laurier University


The market, and marketplace systems, are very conventional features of the economic space and organization of developing countries. By “marketplace” is meant a specific authorized site where buyers and sellers meet at defined, regular intervals for the purpose of exchange (Good, 1971, p. 1). Nowhere are these markets as prominent as they are in Nigeria. These markets provide the setting for trading and marketing and thus play a vital role in the economic life of the country. Networks of markets serve as nodal points for the collectioon and distribution of a wide range of local and regional goods and services. It is also through these markets that most agricultural and cottage industrial products first enter the exchange system, and imported goods finally reach the consumer. Overall, markets are the linking force between rural populations and the national and international economic structure. These markets, however, are not merely economic institutions but are rather multi-functional, serving a variety of political, religious and social functions as well.