Nigeria Could Slide Back To Recession, Becomes Home To 25% Of World Poor~ W/Bank
The World Bank has warned that Nigeria could slide back into recession if crude prices fall by 25 percent to $50 a barrel, and ask policymakers to act to revive economic growth and lift employment.
The bank said in its Nigeria Economic Update report published Monday, also warned that the country risks becoming home to a quarter of the world’s destitute people in the next ten years.
“Under a business-as-usual scenario, where Nigeria maintains the current pace of growth and employment levels, by 2030 the number of Nigerians living in extreme poverty could increase by more than 30 million,” the bank said, noting that “the cost of inaction is significant.”
The economy of Africa’s top oil producer is expected to expand 2.1 percent in 2020 and 2021, the bank said in the report, that’s below the nation’s 2.6 percent population growth rate.
The bank urged President Muhammadu Buhari to increase domestic revenue, remove trade restrictions and improve the predictability of economic policy.
It also called on the government to remove expensive fuel subsidies and reduce the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) intervention in the economy that targeted sectors, which the bank said has crowded out banks.
About half of Nigeria’s almost 200 million people live in poverty, according to the banks. Last year, Nigeria overtook India as the country with the largest number of people in extreme poverty.
Nigeria’s economy is still recovering from its first annual contraction in 25 years in 2016 that resulted from a collapse in crude prices.