Image

Nigeria May Descend Into Extreme Poverty Very Soon — World Bank Raises Alarm |The Republican News

The World Bank in its 2019 Nigeria Economic Update Report which was released on Monday, December 2, stated that the country might soon plunge into poverty if the federal government fails to revive economic growth and create jobs.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the economic update is prepared twice a year (Spring and Fall) to appraise stakeholders interested in economic and social developments, prospects and policies.

Marco Hernendez, Lead Economist of the bank, expressed worry that 100 million Nigerians live on less than 1.90 dollars per day.

According to Hernendez, with population growth estimated at 2.6 per cent, out spacing economic growth in the context of weak job creation, per capital incomes are falling.

He said: “Under a business-as-usual scenario where Nigeria maintains the current pace of growth and employment levels, by 2030 the number of people living in abject poverty can increase by 30 million.”

Hernendez emphasized the need to build reforms to mitigate risks and promote inclusiveness while presenting policy options for increasing economic efficiency to promote growth and job creation in Nigeria.

He further said that robust growth and job creation would require strengthening micro economic management while increasing fiscal revenues to attenuate the impact of oil sector fluctuations.

The lead economist who also called for investments in human capital and infrastructure commended the government for improved regulation to make it easier for entrepreneurs to start and operate businesses.

He, however, commended the federal government for ratifying the social protection policy and establishing a state and national social registry of poor and vulnerable households to enhance social protection.

According to him, “Under a business-as-usual scenario where Nigeria maintains the current pace of growth and employment levels, by 2030 the number of people living in abject poverty can increase by 30 million.”

Meanwhile, The Herald reported that Maryam Uwais, special adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on social investments disclosed that about 620,947 poor and vulnerable Nigerians benefited from the recovered looted funds by the late former head of state, General Sani Abacha.

Uwais who made this known on Monday, October 21, at a public function in Port Harcourt, Rivers, said between August/September 2018 and September/October payment 2019, the total cumulative amount disbursed from the Abacha loot is $76,538,530 and $27,099,028 from the International Development Association (IDA) credit.

Subscribe to The Republican News. Advertise with us. Call us for press release, enquiries. Email: RepublicanNewsNetwork1@gmail.com, phone: +32497220468, +23481819650279, +32466100102

https://facebook.com/TheRepulicanNews, https://twitter.com/RNNetwork1, https://instagram.com/therepublicannews1


Advertisements
Image

Nigeria’s Economy To Grow By 2.5% In 2018 – World Bank |The Republican News

 

Jim-Yong-Kim-world-Bank

The World Bank forecasts that economic growth in Nigeria would edge up to at least 2.5 per cent in 2018, as the country benefits from improved commodity prices, investments and trade.

According to the World Bank’s January 2018 Global Economic Prospect report launched on Tuesday in Washington DC, Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is expected to grow by 2.8 per cent in 2019 and 2020.

The World Bank forecast that global economic growth will go up to 3.1 per cent in the year 2018.

According to the Bank, growth in Sub-Saharan Africa is projected to continue to rise to 3.2 per cent in 2018 and to 3.5 per cent in 2019, on the back of firming commodity prices and gradually strengthening domestic demand.

However, the report showed that growth would remain below pre-crisis averages, partly reflecting a struggle in larger economies to boost private investment.

“South Africa is forecast to tick up to 1.1 per cent growth in 2018 from 0.8 per cent in 2017. The recovery is expected to solidify, as improving business sentiment supports a modest rise in investment.

“However, policy uncertainty was likely to remain and could slow needed structural reforms.

“Nigeria is anticipated to accelerate to a 2.5 per cent rate this year from one per cent growth in the year just ended. An upward revision to Nigeria’s forecast is based on expectation that oil production will continue to recover and that reforms will lift non-oil sector growth.

“Growth in Angola is expected to increase to 1.6 per cent in 2018, as a successful political transition improves the possibility of reforms that ameliorate the business environment,” it stated.

According to the report, Côte d’Ivoire is forecast to expand by 7.2 per cent in 2018, Senegal by 6.9 per cent; Ethiopia by 8.2 per cent, Tanzania by 6.8 per cent, and Kenya by 5.5 per cent as inflation eases.

The World Bank said that the regional outlook for Sub-Saharan Africa was subject to external and domestic risks. It showed that any unexpected activity in the United States and Euro Zone could have a negative impact on the region.

Also, an abrupt slowdown in China could generate adverse spillovers to the region through lower-than-expected commodity prices.

“On the domestic front, excessive external borrowing without forward-looking budget management could worsen debt dynamics and hurt growth in many countries.

“A steeper-than-anticipated tightening of global financing conditions could also lead to a reversal in capital flows to the region. Protracted political and policy uncertainty could further hurt confidence and deter investment in some countries.

“Rising government debt levels highlight the importance of fiscal adjustment to contain fiscal deficits and maintain financial stability.

“Structural policies including education, health, labour market, governance, and business climate reforms could help bolster potential growth,’’ it stated.

The World Bank called on policy makers around the world to focus on human investments to increase their countries’ productivity, and move closer to the goals of ending extreme poverty and boosting shared prosperity.  (NAN)

www.twitter.com/RNNetwork1

Continue reading

Image

What Buhari Told World Bank Chief, Kim Yong – Oshiomhole |The Republican News

adams-oshiomhole

Former Edo State Governor, Adam Oshiomhole

FORMER Edo State Governor Adams Oshiomhole said yesterday President Muhammadu Buhari only asked for assistance on humanitarian crisis during a session with World Bank President Dr. Kim Jong.
He said it was regrettable that a patriotic request made by the President and borne out of altruistic motivation was now being politicised.
He said the idea of trying to read sectional meaning to Buhari’s patriotic request was grossly unfortunate.
Oshiomhole, who made the clarifications in a statement in Abuja, said Buhari remains a statesman.
The statement said: “It is a matter of fact that I was present at the meeting of President Muhammadu Buhari with the World Bank President Dr. Kim Jong on July 21, 2015 at the Blair House, Washington DC.
“It is rather unfortunate that a patriotic request made by Mr. President and borne out of altruistic motivation is now being twisted, manipulated and politicised to suit certain political end.
“Mr. President made the request against the backdrop of the devastation of the Northeast zone and the need for international organisations to rise in support of the efforts of the Nigeria government in arresting the humanitarian crisis in that part of the country.
“The inhuman conditions of the Internally Displaced Persons were also discussed and Mr. President urged the World Bank to look into the best possible ways to address the crisis before it got out of hand.
“In Edo State at that period, the government I headed was also buffeted with the challenge of dealing with internally displaced persons who came to settle in the outskirt of Benin City without the knowledge of the state government.
“It took my personal intervention and the cooperation of Mr. President before we could offer our logistic assistance to make their location habitable to avert any humanitarian crisis.
“For those who are familiar with the devastation of the North-East, where over 20,000 persons have reportedly been killed with over two million internally displaced persons, it smacks of political notoriety for any rational mind to question the request of Mr. President.”
The ex-governor urged Nigerians to stop playing politics with the session between the President and the World Bank chief.
The statement added: “President Buhari remains a statesman, who is not only patriotic and altruistic in his intentions, but one whose actions speak volume for our unity of purpose.
“We should see the country as one indivisible entity driven by common objectives and goals.”

www.twitter.com/RNNetwork1

Continue reading

Image

Deliberate Twisting Of President Buhari’s Commendable Interface With World Bank – Femi Adesina |RN

Buhari-and-World-Bank-Chief

President Buhari with World Bank President, Jim Yong Kim

Those who specialize in a deliberate twisting of information have wailed and raged endlessly on the news item credited to the World Bank Group President, Jim Yong Kim, who disclosed in Washington DC, United States of America, that President Muhammadu Buhari had requested a concentration of the Bank’s intervention efforts in the northern part of Nigeria, particularly in the North-east.

The ignorant and mischievous people, who twist everything for their vile purposes, are making it seem that it was a calculated attempt to give the North an unfair advantage over other parts of Nigeria.

The truth of the matter is that President Buhari, right from his first week in office in June 2015, had reached out to the G-7 in Germany that Nigeria needed help to rebuild the North-east, which had been terribly devastated by the insurgency. He said the country would prefer help in terms of the rebuilding of infrastructure, rather than cash donation, which may end up being misappropriated. In concert with Governors of the region, a comprehensive list of needed repairs was sent to the G-7 leaders.

Also, during a trip to Washington in 2015, and many other engagements that followed, President Buhari sought the help of the World Bank in rebuilding the beleaguered North-east, which was then being wrested from the stranglehold of a pernicious insurgency. It was something always done in the open, and which reflected the President’s concern for the region.

Related: Buhari Asked Us To Focus On Northern Nigeria – World Bank |The Republican News

Those ululating over the disclosure by the President of the World Bank should be a bit reflective, and consider the ravages that the North-east has suffered since 2009 when the Boko Haram insurgency started. Schools, hospitals, homes, entire villages, towns, cities, bridges, and other public utilities have been blown up, laid waste, and lives terminated in excess of 20,000, while widows and orphans littered the landscape. The humanitarian crisis was of monumental proportions.

President Buhari simply did what a caring leader should do. He took the battle to the insurgents, broke their backs, and then sought for help to rebuild so that the people could have their lives back. Should that then elicit the negative commentary that has trailed the disclosure from the World Bank? Not at all, except insidious minds.

President Buhari has a pan-Nigerian mandate, and he will discharge his duties and responsibilities in like manner. Any part of the country that requires special attention would receive it, irrespective of primordial affinities, which narrow-minded people have not been able to live above. This President will always work in the best interest of all parts of the country at all times. Let ethnic warriors sheathe their swords.

FEMI ADESINA
Special Adviser to the President
(Media and Publicity)
October 13, 2017

www.twitter.com/RNNetwork1

Continue reading

Image

Buhari Asked Us To Focus On Northern Nigeria – World Bank |The Republican News

Jim-Yong-Kim-world-Bank

President of the World Bank, Jim Yong Kim

The President of the World Bank Group, Jim Yong Kim, said on Thursday that the bank had concentrated on the northern region of Nigeria in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s request.
Kim and the Managing Director, International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, who spoke at separate press conferences in Washington DC, United States, also advised Buhari to invest in things that would enhance economic growth.
Kim said, “You know, in my very first meeting with President Buhari he said specifically that he would like us to shift our focus to the northern region of Nigeria and we’ve done that. Now, it has been very difficult. The work there has been very difficult.
“I think Nigeria, of course, has suffered from the dropping oil prices. I think things are just now getting better. But the conversation we need to have with Nigeria, I think, is in many ways related to the theme that I brought to the table just this past week, which is the investment in human capital. The percentage of the Gross Domestic Product that Nigeria spends on healthcare is less than one percent.”
He added, “Despite that, there is so much turbulence in the northern part of the country, and there is the hit that was taken from the drop in the oil prices. Nigeria has to think ahead and invest in its people. Investing in the things that will allow Nigeria to be a thriving, rapidly growing economy in the future is what the country has to focus on right now.”
Kim also said, “Focusing on the northern part of Nigeria, we hope that as commodity prices stabilise and oil prices come back up, the economy will grow a bit more. But very, very much important is the need to focus on what the drivers of growth in the future will be.”
According to the World Bank boss, the bank will invest in human capital in other parts of Africa in order to prepare the continent for the next phase of growth.
Lagarde, in her remarks, said Sub-Saharan African countries, including Nigeria, had posted suboptimal growth in recent times.
The growth figures, she said, were far too small considering the huge demographic potential of Nigeria and other countries in the region.
As a result, she said the IMF would be engaging ministers of finance and central bank governors from the region attending the annual World Bank and IMF meetings on how they could boost and stabilise economic growth.
Lagarde said, “The Sub-Saharan Africa is one region of the world where growth is suboptimal. Those countries grow at an average growth of 2.5 percent. That is too low for the demographic expansion of the region.”
The IMF managing director said emerging and developing economies must invest more in their economies through infrastructural spending, strengthening safety nets, allowing women more access to the labour market and carrying structural reforms. (Punch)

The Republican News
www.twitter.com/RNNetwork1

Continue reading

Image

Nigeria’s Revenue Can’t Sustain Interest Payment On Debt, Says World Bank

Worldbank

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim

Everest Amaefule, Abuja

Although Nigeria’s total current debt is relatively low compared to the Gross Domestic Product, the interest rate payment is not sustainable by current revenues, the World Bank has said.

Senior Economist at World Bank office in Nigeria, Yue Man Lee, said this in Abuja on Wednesday on the sideline of the release of the 15th edition of Africa’s Pulse, an analysis of issues shaping the continent’s economic future.

For the interest payment to be sustainable, according to Lee, the country either has to increase its revenues or work towards balancing the debt profile to make way for more foreign debt rather than allow the continued dominance of local debt with high interest rates.

She said, “Nigeria’s debt to GDP ratio is relatively low. What is of concern is the ratio of interest payment to revenue. That is what is concerning. This reflects the fact that there has been a massive drop in revenues because of the drop in oil revenues.

“There are two main strategies to reduce this debt burden. One is to increase the revenues. Here, in order not to be vulnerable to the volatility of the oil sector, the critical thing is to increase the non-oil revenues like the VAT, the income taxes and the excises outside of oil. This is something we have been discussing with the government about.”

Lee added, “The other area in terms of interest payment is to look at the debt profile. Right now, most of the debt is domestic debt – short term domestic debt – and so, the government has already expressed the strategy to move towards external longer-term debt. You have seen them issuing Eurobonds successfully as part of that strategy.

“The key thing for us in terms of sustainability of the debt profile is raising revenues. That is just the key thing.”

Lee also spoke on the nation’s continuing foreign exchange crisis, saying that further liberalisation could lead to depreciation of the naira, but predicted recovery after a short while.

She stated, “Once it is liberalised, the market will determine the exchange rate. We don’t know exactly what the exchange rate will be. Possibly, it will depreciate further; but then, it may adjust back. These are the forces of demand and supply.

“If the exchange rate depreciates further than what it is at the interbank, there could be some inflationary impact. I think we should bear in mind that right now, a lot more of large scale transactions are possibly done outside of the official interbank exchange rate.”

The World Bank official added, “If a number of transactions are being carried out using the parallel exchange rate, the prices have already been incorporated into the current selling prices. So, it’s a question of how much of inflation impact.

“The second thing to note is that the government has chosen to manage the inflation impact, namely monetary policy. So, that is why the IMF recommended further flexibility in the exchange rate regime with tightening of the monetary policy.”  (Punchng.com)

www.twitter.com/RNNetwork1

Continue reading

Image

Nigeria To Exit Recession Soon, Says World Bank |The Republican News

Worldbank

The World Bank Group, yesterday, hinted Nigeria will soon recover from its current economic recession.

Mrs. Eme Essien-Lore, Country Manager in Nigeria, International Finance Corporation, a member of the Group, who made the observation in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Thursday, noted that there were several indications to show that the country’s economy was beginning to rebound after several months of decline.

She stated: “In our perspective and with the numbers that we have seen coming from the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Nigeria’s economy has recorded about one per cent real growth.

“That is a bit lower than government’s expectation, which is about 2.2 per cent growth for 2017. It is a bit modest, but we certainly expect that the economy of Nigeria will rebound and recover from last year’s recession,” she said.

Essien-Lore commended the Federal Government’s new economic plan, but said that there was need to set priorities for its implementation up to 2020.

On government ERGP, she said the plan is very comprehensive, ambitious and thoughtful and that the World Bank had been consulting with the Nigerian government on the plan, adding that the bank was happy that it had been published.

“Now we can sit down and look at it to see how we will align our objectives around what the government wants to do.”

Essien-Lore said the plan was an opportunity to look at the priorities and what the World Bank could do for the Nigerian government as “it comes up with its development agenda. The plan is for 2017 to 2020; it is a relatively short period, but we need to know what the priorities are and collectively work with government on how to achieve them,” she said.

Meanwhile, the naira, on Thursday, consolidated its gains against the dollar at the parallel market.

The Nigerian currency gained two points to exchange at N455 to a dollar, from N457 it posted on Wednesday, while the pound sterling and the euro traded at N550 and N480, respectively.

At the Bureau De Change (BDC) window, the naira traded at N400 to a dollar, while the pound sterling and the euro closed at N550 and N487, respectively. Trading at the interbank segment of the market saw the naira closing at N306.75 to a dollar.

Currency traders said that the boost in liquidity by the CBN had enabled the naira to sustain its gain against the dollar at the forex market.                     (The Sun)

www.twitter.com/RNNetwork1

Continue reading