Economy on upward trajectory despite hiccups, says Buhari
Notwithstanding disruptions that characterise the global economy and internal troubles, President Muhammadu Buhari has said that the Nigerian scenario has continued to show resilience, maintaining an upward trajectory.
At the inauguration of the Presidential Committee on the National Economy, Buhari said the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), the war in Ukraine and the loss of substantial volumes of oil negatively impacted the Nigerian economy.
His words: “Starting with COVID-19 and now the conflict in Ukraine, the past three years have been turbulent for the global economy. Global inter-dependence has become more apparent, as we have had to deal with volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity.
“In this period, challenges faced by the world have been many, including lockdowns as COVID-19 raged, disruptions to supply chains around the world and sharp fluctuation in prices.”
According to him, just as the world was beginning to recover from COVID-19, the conflict in the Black Sea region between Ukraine and Russia worsened the challenges already being faced and created additional problems to which policy-makers must respond.
“Our economy continues to grow, despite the adverse effect of rising interest rates, a stronger United States dollar and higher inflation across the world,” he said.
The President noted, however, that some of the problems could be addressed internally, making the constitution of the seasoned economic experts expedient:
He added: “It is, however, important to note that some of the issues we must address are peculiar to us; for example, the decline in our production of crude oil. It is estimated that last month, August 2022, we produced less than one million barrels. The fall in production is essentially due to economic sabotage.
“With the high price of oil in the world markets, producing at about half our Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) quota has deprived us of the much-needed revenue and foreign exchange. Government is working tirelessly to reverse this situation.”
Buhari assured Nigerians that despite the hiccups, necessitating borrowings, his administration remains committed to the welfare of the citizens, especially the implementation of the Social Investment Programmes (SIPs).
Chief Economic Adviser to the President, Dr. Doyin Salami; Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed; Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo; Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele and Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal, representing Chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) made presentations at the event.
Chaired by Buhari, the Presidential Committee on the Economy has the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo; NGF Chairman, Dr. Kayode Fayemi; Minister of State for Petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva, as well as Ahmed, Adebayo and others as members.