The Ministry of Budget and National Planning has said that Nigeria is targeting economic growth of at least 7 percent a year by 2020, a far cry from its current recession, the first in 25 years.
several private sector operators and employers of labour worked out of a consultative session with the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Sen. Udoma Udo Udoma, describing it as a sham.
Nigeria’s economy is heavily dependent on exports of crude oil and has been hobbled by low global oil prices that have slashed government revenues and the availability of foreign currency.
In the third quarter of 2016, gross domestic product contracted 2.24 percent from a year earlier.
With inflation also at an 11-year high, frustration is rising, with protesters taking to the streets of major cities across the country on Monday to call for a change in government.
The 7 percent target for gross domestic product growth is part of a medium-term economic recovery plan that seeks to address some of Nigeria’s issues, the budget ministry said in a statement.
“Our goal is to have an economy with low inflation, stable exchange rates, and a diversified and inclusive growth,” Minister of Budget and National Planning, Sen. Udoma Udo Udoma said at an economic forum, where he addressed private enterprise, according to the statement.
The plan’s priorities are agriculture and food security, energy, small businesses and industrialisation and stabilising the macroeconomic environment, the minister said.
“Nigerian growth faces various supply constraints including fuel, power, foreign exchange, and even business unfriendly regulation,” the statement said, adding that the recovery plan would seek to address these issues.
While speaking with SweetcrudeReports some of those who worked out of the consultative session noted that questions they raised regarding exchange rate and intra-government agency communication were not answered.
Some of the private sector participants also noted that even though they had been invited to a consultative session, strangely, the committee set up by the office of the vice president including the minister of budget and planning as well as the minister of Industry, Trade and Investment had already prepared and submitted a report without taking input from them.
“We wonder why we were invited in the first place. Especially since they had already put together and submitted a report,” one of the private sector participants wondered.