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Nigeria’s tottering GDP sends warning signal

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Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udo Udoma

For the first and second quarters of 2018, the Nigerian economy experienced turbulence, which analysts have already described as similar to the period prior to recession.

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), in its report of economic activities for the second quarter (Q2), yesterday, said the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) lost momentum, calculated at 0.45 per cent, as growth settled at 1.5 per cent (year-on-year) in real terms on N16.58 trillion.

Meanwhile, the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udo Udoma, has expressed satisfaction that government ‘s efforts at diversifying the national economy from oil were bearing positive fruits.

He made the remarks following results of the non-oil sector in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Communications, Akpandem James.

Since the exit from recession in the second quarter of last year, the pace of recovery has been dubbed “slow and painful” by some while others termed it “fragile.”

But the two consecutive declines, following a peak at 2.1 per cent in Q4 of 2017, saw the country’s growth plummet to 1.95 per cent in Q1 of 2018 and now 1.5 per cent in Q2.

Growth in the second quarter was 0.79 per cent points higher when compared to the corresponding period of last year that recorded an increase of 0.72 per cent, but –0.45 per cent points slower than the 1.95 per cent achieved in Q1 of 2018.

In the period under review, aggregate GDP stood at N30.69 trillion in nominal terms, representing a 7.85 per cent increase compared to the preceding quarter’s N28.46 trillion and 13.57 per cent increase as against same time of last year that produced N27.03 trillion.

The widespread claims on diversification might have impacted activities, as the report showed that growth in Q2 was driven by developments in the non-oil sector, with services therein attaining the strongest positive leap since 2016. The manufacturing sector recorded 9.29 per cent.

Similarly, the agriculture sector, though contributed 22.86 per cent to overall GDP in real terms during the quarter, grew by 1.19 per cent (year-on-year) in real terms, a decrease by –1.82 per cent points from the corresponding period of 2017 and a decrease of -1.81 per cent points over the preceding quarter.


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