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Recession: Sell state assets, forget IMF loan, says Dangote


Aliko Dangote

Aliko Dangote

As Nigeria ponders the way out of its current economic recession, businessman and industrialist, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, has advised President Muhammadu Buhari not to borrow from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), but instead to embark on the sale of state assets to shore up the country’s cash and foreign exchange reserves.

Aliko told CNBC Africa that the sale is an easier route to boosting the economy, just as S&P Global Ratings downgraded Nigeria’s credit rating to B from B+.

I think the real challenge is now for us to have the political will, in terms of selling some assets.

“I think it’s an easier route than the IMF or World Bank to borrow money, because what you need to do is actually to beef up the reserves,” he told CNBC Africa.

S&P said in a report on the downgrade: “Nigeria’s economy has weakened more than we expected owing to a marked contraction in oil production, a restrictive foreign exchange regime and delayed fiscal stimulus.”

Yesterday, Finance Minister, Kemi Adeosun, said government would release N350 billion to fund projects instituted by ministries and departments.

Dangote told CNBC that Nigeria’s economy should have been diversified a long time ago, lamenting its over reliance on oil.

He was, however, optimistic that Nigeria would exit recession in the fourth quarter of this year.

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