Isaac Anumihe, Abuja
The Federal Government, on Wednesday, said that the launch of its focus lab for the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) was to boost 164 identified projects with a potential investment of $22.5 billion and creation of 513,591 jobs in 2020.
It added that over $10.9 billion worth of projects have been categorised under the scheme and ready to go.
Speaking when he declared open the 59th Nigerian Economic Society (NES) summit in Abuja, the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, said that since 2016 when the plan was adopted in response to recession, the micro-economic outcomes for the implementation of ERGP are evident.
According to him, the first objective of ERGP is to restore growth and there are already five successive growth sectors.
“The first objective of ERGP was to restore growth and we have had five successive growths since then. Of course, the growth of 1.5 per cent in the second quarter of 2018 was not really enough, but now the momentum is in the right direction. What is required is to accelerate growth. The current account is in surplus at nearly $4.5 billion this year. Our debt to Gross Domestic Products (GDP) ratio of 20 per cent is within acceptable rate” Osinbajo who was represented by the Special Adviser to the President on Economic Matters (Office of the Vice President), Dr Adeyemi Dipeolu , said.
He pointed out that, although inflation has fallen to 11.23 per cent, it is still below the upper threshold of 12 per cent set by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
“Of course, the growth of 1.5 per cent in the second quarter of 2018 was not really enough, but now the momentum is in the right direction. What is required is to accelerate growth. Our debt to GDP ratio of 20 per cent is within acceptable rate.
“Inflation has also fallen to 11.23 per cent which, by the way, is below the upper threshold of 12 per cent set by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) at which point the relationship between inflation and growth becomes negative.”
What this means, of course, is that there could, at this stage be a positive relationship between growth and inflation. The point is that improved macro economic conditions were themselves not enough to guarantee quicker growth. This will come from the primary and secondary sectors of the economy all of which are linked to the agricultural value chain,” he said.