By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Special Adviser to the President on Economic Matters, Dr Adeyemi Dipeolu, has reacted to the report by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) that the country’s economy was officially in recession.
Dr Dipeolu, in a statement issued on Wednesday, maintained that Nigeria’s economy was performing better than the predictions of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
The NBS in its latest Gross Domestic Product (GDP) figures for the 2016 second had said there was contraction of 2 percent in the economy.
It further disclosed that Nigeria’s economy shrank by 0.36 percent in the first quarter of 2016, to hit its lowest point in 25 years.
Though the Presidency admitted that the inflation and unemployment rates in the country had remained high despite efforts by the current government, it however stressed that there were clear indications that the second half of the year will be better.
“Besides the growth recorded in the agriculture and solid mineral sectors, the Nigerian economy in response to the policies of the Buhari presidency is also doing better than what the IMF had estimated with clear indications that the second half of the year would be even much better,” Dr Dipeolu said.
Quoting the recently released data from the NBS as showing a decline in GDP by -2.06% in the second quarter of 2016 on a year-on-year basis, the Presidency attributed the outcome to a sharp contraction in the oil sector due to huge losses of crude oil production as a result of vandalisation and sabotage.
He assured that the current administration would continue to work diligently on the economy and engage all stakeholders to ensure that beneficial policy initiatives were actively pursued and the dividends delivered to the Nigerian people.