By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Tuesday, March 13, 2018, has been fixed for the launching of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) Focus Labs.
The ceremony would be performed by President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja, the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Mr Udoma Udo Udoma, told newsmen after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday.
The Minister disclosed that during the weekly meeting, he briefed the council of improvements recorded in the nation’s economy, especially with the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) figures released recently by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), which said the economy grew 0.83 percent in 2017.
He also told FEC that inflation also trended downwards, easing from 18.72 percent in January 2017 to 15.13 percent in January 2018.
This, he said, excited members of the council, who were happy that the non-oil sector grew by 1.450 percent last year, the strongest since 2015.
“The numbers clearly show that the economy has fully exited recession. Council members were particularly pleased to note that this growth is very broad based with agriculture growing at 4.23 percent up from 3.06 percent in the third quarter.
“Other sectors such as transportation and storage, electricity and gas production, metal ores, and industry all grew.
“Particularly noteworthy were the growth recorded in Trade, 2.07 percent and Services, 0.10 percent after six quarters of negative growth,” Mr Udoma said.
“We have to continue to work even harder to achieve the goals of the ERGP of diversifying the economy and achieving our growth targets of 3.5per cent this year, and 7per cent by 2020,” he added.
ERGP is an economic plan that builds on the 2016 Strategic Implementation Plan, meant to tackle corruption, improving security and rebuilding the Nigerian economy, while the lab is one of the several initiatives by the Federal Government to drive the implementation of the strategic objectives of the ERGP.
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