December 15, 2017 /09:15AM / FBNQuest Research
commentators require a full range of macroeconomic and industry data upon which
to base their decisions and analysis. Governments and financial journalists
share this requirement for their own reasons.
despite being the largest economy in Africa, lags some lesser players on the
continent in terms of the quantity and quality of its industry data. In part,
this reflects the size of its informal sector and the limited reach of its tax
The most useful
measures of consumption, notably active mobile lines and internet
subscriptions, are provided by the Nigerian Communications Commission. The
Communications Authority of Kenya, its counterpart, offers rather more,
including: the number of mobile money subscribers, their transactions (number
and value), the number of mobile money agents and total available bandwidth.
authority’s latest report covers April-June 2017. There is no reason why the
regulator in Nigeria could not coordinate a similar data offering. It is not as
if the industry players (banks, IT companies and mobile operators) are
useful measure of consumption is the data series on air passenger traffic
provided by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS). We have to add our own
manufacturing PMI, and the CBN’s too.
largest statistical gap is the absence of a single, unified data source on
production of crude oil and LNG. This makes Nigeria unique among leading oil
producers for the wrong reasons, and forces analysts to choose their favoured
source from a large selection.
outsider might look to the state oil company as the starting point. Yet the NBS
has had to revise its national accounts data from the previous quarter because
the NNPC has changed its historic production numbers. This has happened several
numbers should be available from the larger segments of manufacturing, such as
cement, soft drinks, beer and sugar. Where only a handful of companies is
involved, there is no excuse.
may not have the most glamorous occupation but they should enjoy far better
access to the necessary raw materials for their work. They are not asking for
sensitive or obscure information.
the greatest impact, additional indicators should be published on a monthly
basis and in a timely manner by a single agency. In Nigeria’s case, the obvious
candidate is a properly funded NBS.