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Nigeria’s economy to grow by 2.7 percent in 2022 – IMF

THE International Monetary Fund (IMF) has predicted Nigeria’s economy to grow by 2.6 percent this year and, 2.7 percent in 2022.

The global financial institution made this known yesterday in its October Regional Economic Outlook for Sub-Saharan Africa: One planet, two worlds, three stories, made available at the ongoing Annual Meetings of the IMF and World Bank in Washington.

According to IMF, the growth would be driven by a recovery in non-oil sectors and higher oil prices.

“Growth will inch up slightly to 2.7 percent in 2022 and remain at this level over the medium term, allowing GDP per capita to stabilise at current levels, notwithstanding long-standing structural problems and elevated uncertainties,” the outlook stated.

It also estimated that sub-Saharan Africa’s economic growth would be 3.7 percent in 2021 and 3.8 percent in 2022, and attributed that the recovery would be supported by favourable external conditions on trade and commodity prices. It stated that the region had benefited from improved harvests and increased agricultural production in a number of countries.

In his opening remarks at the media briefing on the outlook, Director, African Department, IMF, Abebe Selassie, said the recovery followed the sharp contraction in 2020 and was much welcome.

He, however, said the growth still represented the slowest relative to other regions, attributing the divergence reflected to the slow vaccine rollout and differences in policy space.

“Against this backdrop, I want to highlight three areas which need concerted action by policymakers in countries and indeed the international community. The first of these is inequality. Policies need to be squarely focused on addressing the challenge of poverty to prevent the insecurity in the region.

“Policymakers need to navigate among three challenging pressures: pressing spending needs to address the many social, human capital, and infrastructure needs; limited borrowing capacity given already high public debt levels in most cases; and the time consuming and politically difficult nature of mobilising tax revenues,” Selassie said.

He stated that countries, skillfully navigating the challenges, would have a huge bearing on the macroeconomic well-being and growth prospects. He stressed the importance of international solidarity and support to facilitating divergent health, poverty, and economic outcomes.

The IMF director also said the global population was set to grow by about two billion people over the next three decades, with half of that increase coming from sub-Saharan Africa.

“This presents a huge opportunity: a growing pool of human talent and ingenuity that will have a telling effect on the economic, social, and political trajectory of our planet. We need to pay more heed to this phenomenal opportunity.”

He further reiterated the IMF commitment to supporting sub-Saharan Africa tackle the broad array of challenges it faced.

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