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Nigeria must prepare for imminent economic crisis – CBN Governor Emefiele

The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele

Mr. Godwin Emefiele, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, has given an indication that the country might slip into economic recession again.

Emefiele while delivering a lecture titled; ‘Beyond the Global Financial Crisis: Monetary Policy under Global Uncertainty’ at the University of Benin, Edo State, said that Nigeria must prepare for the next global economic crisis.

“From some of my concluding remarks, you may have observed, whether you like it or not, there is global uncertainty that will, unfortunately, most certainly lead to another crisis,” he said while delivering the lecture on Wednesday.

The CBN governor who was recently appointed for another second term in office said that although Nigeria had made progress in recovering from the last recession in 2017, more efforts must be made ahead of the next crisis.

“The question could be, how are we as Nigerians, particularly our leaders, I am talking of monetary and fiscal policy authorities, how are we preparing our country for the next crisis?

“We have luckily exited recession; we have seen recession pending downward to about 18.72 per cent in 2017 to about 11. 37 per cent today.

“We have seen the reserve moving up but unfortunately we still have issues and those issues border on the unemployment rate and those issues border on how we prepare our country,” Mr. Emefiele said.

He further noted that the introduction of the investors and exporters window helped in increasing Nigeria’s external reserves, adding that the foreign exchange reserve had risen from $23billion in October 2016 to $45billion in April 2019.

Emefiele also said that for over 24 months, the exchange rate at the Investors & Exporters FX window had remained stable at an average of N360 per $1, while the parallel market exchange rate had appreciate from N525 per $1 in February 2017 to N360 per $1 today.

“After five consecutive quarters of negative growth beginning in the 1st quarter of 2016, a coordinated approach by the fiscal and monetary authorities supported a rebound in the nation’s economy during the second quarter of 2017.

“The recovery has been driven largely by improved non-oil activities especially the agriculture sector which expanded consistently by about 3.5 per cent to 4.3 per cent reflecting government’s efforts at diversifying the economy,” he added.

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