From Isaac Anumihe, Abuja
International Monetary Fund (IMF) has projected Nigeria’s real Gross Domestic Products (GDP) to rise to 3.3 per cent this year.
It however, hinged the growth on the implementation of Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (2017–20), which emphasises economic diversification. The Fund also noted that Nigeria is indebted to it to the tune of N31. 01 trillion. In May last year, IMF released over $1 trillion to poor members nations including Nigeria. The Managing Director of IMF, Kristalina Georgieva, added that the fund was a response to several distress calls by members who are in dire need of support.
“We have $1 trillion in lending capacity and are placing it at the service of our membership. We are responding to an unprecedented number of calls for emergency financing—from over 90 countries so far. Our Executive Board has just agreed to double access to our emergency facilities, which will allow us to meet the expected demand of about $100 billion in financing. Lending programmes have already been approved at record speed—including for the Kyrgyz Republic, Rwanda, Madagascar, and Togo—with many more to come.
Also in April 2020, IMF said it approved its largest COVID-19 emergency financing package so far to Nigeria—a US$3.4 billion Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI).
But Minister of Finance Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed has said that although Nigeria has a revenue problem, the level of borrowing is still within bounds.
“I want to restate that the level of borrowing in Nigeria as an economy that is having a GDP of N142 trillion is not high. What we have is a revenue problem. I wish people will shift their attention to the problem that we are having which is revenue” she noted.