Tuesday, November 25, 2020 / 11:49 AM / Bukola Akinyele-Yisau for WebTV / Header Image Credit: WebTV
Nigeria's recovery from the Q3, 2020 recession hinges on the effective alignment of fiscal and monetary policies that are focused on driving productivity. The Former President of Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) and a lecturer of economics at Babcock University Professor Segun Ajibola said this during recent comments on the Nigerian economy.
According to the lecturer the nation needs to drive a more coordinated domestic production policy that emphasizes "producing what the citizens eat and supporting local production".
With a high consumption rate, Nigeria according to the economist, must address the incidence of a high-level of importation of goods and services into the country.
Speaking on the recession he acknowledged the fact that the country failed in harnessing the potentials of the Oil & Gas sector, which would have enabled it to achieve revenue diversification and support the development of other key sectors.
He decried the state of the Nigerian manufacturing sector which was weak. Professor Ajibola said a lot of disruptions affected the Q1 and Q2,2020 performance of the sector due to border closures, port closures, inability to access critical raw materials and low-level business activities.
The economist emphasised the need to address the major lack of connection between the financial and the real sector of the economy. According to him, it was important to fix the gaps and take the country out of the recent economic recession.
On a bright note, Ajibola highlighted the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector which grew at 14.56% amidst the recession, which was not surprising considering the shift to digital technology at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.
He believed ICT would continue to grow even in a period of recession and economic lockdowns because of the role of digital technology in providing fit-for-purpose solutions to broad businesses and consumer challenges.
In reviewing the agriculture sector, Ajibola admitted that Nigeria has put a lot of effort into fashioning different programs and interventions but noted that there were immense opportunities for further accelerating growth in the sector.
The Professor of economics said that the country's economic sustainability plan needs to be more robust to address the current realities, while the government needs to rethink governance.
He said the monetary policy authority's role in ensuring price stability is currently being challenged and emphasized the need for a linkage between the financial market and the real sector, which he considered weak.
Ajibola called for an enabling business environment that could incentivize investments that would lead to jobs and wealth creation.