The immediate past Director General, West African Institute for Financial and Economic Management, Prof. Akpan Ekpo, yesterday, said though the economy exited recession technically in 2017, it is still in a stagflation state based on very high rate of unemployment, double-digit inflation and sluggish growth.
Ekpo stated this at the Nigerian-American Chamber of Commerce, NACC, February Breakfast meeting, with the theme: “2018 Economic Review: Expectation for 2019”. He however opined that proper implementation of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) would ensure that the economy is on a growth trajectory.
He noted that it is embarrassing that the 2019 budget has not been passed and may not be passed till March, adding that delay in passing the budget will further put pressure on the economy. Ekpo stated: “Going forward, the oil story should not describe the economy, the quality of governance over-time should ensure a continuous improvement in the standard of living of most Nigerians in 2019 and beyond.
The economy has enormous human, material and natural resources. Building a strong economy which can withstand shocks is more often a permanent work-in-progress. Millions lack the basic necessities of life; only 20 per cent benefit from the resources of the country and poverty incidence is increasing and inequality is widening.”