Experts optimistic about economy despite challenges
Despite challenges faced by the Nigerian economy recovering from recession, experts within the financial and investment sector has expressed optimism in the growth of business activities in the country.
The experts who gathered at the ninth yearly Pan-Africa 1:1 investor conference organized by Renaissance Capital in Lagos on Wednesday, said for Nigeria to maintain macro stability there is need to increase revenue allocation.
In his presentation titled, ‘Investing in Nigeria ahead of the 2019 elections’, Executive Director, African Business Research, Dr. Adedoyin Salami, said oil prices look good to remain very favourable for Nigeria through to the elections, although they are expected to moderate in 2019 and beyond to the $50 to $60 range.
Salami said the economy recovery would firm up to in 2018 and beyond with accretion to foreign exchange reserves continuing into coming months on the back of rising oil prices, and is crucial for capital repatriation.
He identified drivers of the economy to include improved external environment and the continuing stability of agriculture.
He disclosed that government spending appears to decline in the fiscal year preceding election years as the historical trend suggests that capital inflows were more influenced by contingent development.
Chief Executive Officer, Renaissance Capital, Nigeria, Temitope Popoola, said: “Nigeria remains a very key important market for us, it’s a market that we have been operating close to a decade and as results we have been through a lot of circles. When we look at our business today over the short and medium term, the one that gives us excitement, Nigeria in particular and rest of the region. “
Also Chairman of the Board of Directors, Renaissance Capital, Christophe Charlier, said the conference was part of its commitment to the Nigerian market, stating that the company is pleased with the macro directions that it has seen.”We are committed to the market, we would continue to develop it and ourselves across the West African region looking into francophone countries.”
Meanwhile, Sub-Saharan Africa Economist, Renaissance Capital, Yvonne Mhango, said:”We are encouraged by developments in the region this year, the economy seem brighter.
“We have seen growth strengthened; we expect momentum to speak up. The easing of monetary policy, we have seen quite a number of central banks moving towards that direction.
“Nigeria has indicated that they would like to do so as soon as the interest rate is in the lower single digit; we would like to see some policy rate cut in second half of the year. We have seen the ease in Ghana, Kenya have policy rate cut over the past 12 months,” she said.
Get the latest news delivered straight to your inbox every day of the week. Stay informed with the Guardian’s leading coverage of Nigerian and world news, business, technology and sports.