Nigeria Already Exiting Recession—Budget Minister
By Dipo Olowookere
Though the International Monetary Fund (IMF) says it doubts Nigeria will quit recession this year, Minister of Budget and National Planning, Mr Udo Udoma, has stressed that the country was already moving out of its economic crisis with the adoption of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP).
Speaking on Thursday in Abuja while inaugurating the Joint Planning Committee for the 23rd Nigerian Economic Summit (NES), the Minister noted that the Federal Government was only concerned about sustaining the present positive momentum.
In the last five months, inflation rate has been on a steady decline after it nearly hit 19 percent earlier this year.
Experts predict that when the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) releases inflation rate for the month July next week, it would have further moderated to about 15.96 percent.
Government believes by the end of next month, the country would have ‘technically’ exited recession it fully slumped into about a year ago.
At Thursday’s inauguration, the Minister said the 23rd Nigerian Economic Summit was coming at a time when the national debate was no longer about how to get out of recession.
“The focus will therefore be on specific sectors such as infrastructure, manufacturing, renewable energy, housing, agribusiness, creative industries, retail trade and digitalisation.
“The summit will essentially be used to see how we can intensify efforts to implement the ERGP to create opportunities, tackle unemployment and improve productivity in Nigeria,” Mr Udoma said.
The summit, themed ‘Actualising the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan: Opportunities, Productivity and Employment,’ will hold in October and it is the single largest gathering of economic and financial experts from the private and public sectors.